State of New York Archives: on Crime

John Katko: 2002: formulated the Syracuse Gang Violence Task Force

All Americans have a right to feel safe where they live, work, and play. Students have a right to a quality public education in safe schools with equal opportunities.

As a local leader in organized crime and high-level narcotics federal prosecutions, John was instrumental in formulating the Syracuse Gang Violence Task Force in 2002 and overseeing all gang-related federal prosecutions since that time, bringing the first-ever successful RICO gang prosecutions to Syracuse. John's portfolio also includes work with the region's successful Weed and Seed programs and multiple high profile money laundering, health care fraud, and political and police corruption prosecutions.

Source: 2014 N. Y. House campaign website, Nov 4, 2014

Rob Astorino: Block publication of gun owner names and addresses

County Executive Astorino believes in the limits of government as outlined by the U.S. Constitution. Period.

Rob Astorino stood up for law-abiding gun owners when the Journal News published their names and home addresses. It was wrong and it was dangerous. The Journal News had no right to publish the names and home addresses of law-abiding gun owners in Westchester. These were law-abiding citizens, and The Journal News treated them like sex offenders. Further, names on the list included domestic violence victims in hiding and retired judges and detectives. County Executive Rob Astorino immediately spoke out on radio and wrote (and called) the paper's publisher demanding that the online map come down and it came down.

Source: 2014 N. Y. gubernatorial campaign website, Sep 1, 2014

Rob Astorino: Address root causes of student violence like mental illness

County Executive Astorino took responsible action in the wake of the terrible 2012 Newtown school shooting. Over a period of months, he brought together school, mental health, law enforcement, non-profit, and religious leaders to share and implement best practice prevention and response initiatives to better protect our kids and their teachers in the classroom, while at the same time addressing the root causes of student violence, such as mental illness and absenteeism.
Source: 2014 N. Y. gubernatorial campaign website, Sep 1, 2014

John Katko: Capital punishment can be an effective deterrent

Q: Do you support capital punishment for certain crimes?

A: Yes. My twenty-plus years of experience as a federal prosecutor tells me that capital punishment can be an effective deterrent. But such decisions are best left to the individual states and not Congress.

Source: VoteSmart 2014 N. Y. Congressional Political Courage Test Aug 30, 2014

Jason Carter: No ban on the death penalty

Jason Carter distances himself from a man he has loved and admired since boyhood: his grandfather, former President Jimmy Carter. Of the elder Carter's call to ban the death penalty, his grandson said, "I love my grandfather, but we disagree." And when grandfather Carter offered to attend a campaign rally in Albany, Ga., his grandson politely asked him to stay home. "He wanted the people of southwest Georgia to see that he was a man of his own," the former president said in an interview in his office.

So it goes in what may be the nation's most awkward legacy campaign. Political families--from the Roosevelts to the Kennedys, Bushes and Clintons--have long been a part of American politics. Carter's bid to unseat Gov. Nathan Deal, the Republican incumbent, is testing the strength and durability of the Carter name in Georgia, a red state that Democrats hope to turn blue. But it is also a test of something more: a deep bond between a 38-year-old grandson and an 89-year-old grandfather.

Source: N. Y. Times on 2014 Georgia gubernatorial race Jul 26, 2014

Zephyr Teachout: Disenfranchising due to criminal convictions is undemocratic

Voting is a basic principle of our democracy. Yet New York State presently disenfranchises individuals with criminal convictions, taking away their right to vote while they are in jail. This is undemocratic. We should follow the lead of Vermont and Maine, and ensure felons never lose their right to vote.
Source: 2014 N. Y. Governor campaign website, Jul 2, 2014

Zephyr Teachout: We have a long way to go on criminal justice reform

Residents of New York State deserve a criminal justice system that is fair to all and that makes policies with an eye to their long-term impact, ensuring that we don't address problems by only making them worse. Governor Cuomo has made strides in reforming our criminal justice system--but there is still a long way to go.
Source: 2014 N. Y. Governor campaign website, Jul 2, 2014

Zephyr Teachout: Give minorities opportunity, not criminal justice system

Arrests for petty crimes cost taxpayers tens of millions of dollars annually and needlessly introduce young people to the criminal justice system while saddling them with permanent criminal records. Being stigmatized this way has huge long-term consequences, making it far harder to find a job or get into school. We should be expanding opportunities for young blacks and Latinos rather than foreclosing them.
Source: 2014 N. Y. Governor campaign website, Jul 2, 2014

Zephyr Teachout: Raise age of criminal responsibility from 16 to 18

New York State should raise the age of criminal responsibility. Presently, New York automatically prosecutes children as adults: around 50,000 16- and 17-years olds are tried as adults each year. Exposing children to the hazards of incarceration in the adult prison system endangers their well-being and risks setting them down a path of recidivism, as 80% of adolescents forced into the adult prison system go on to reoffend. We should ensure we treat children like children.
Source: 2014 N. Y. Governor campaign website, Jul 2, 2014

Merrick Garland: Prosecuted terrorism as Justice Department official

Days after a huge bomb killed 168 people in Oklahoma City in April 1995, Merrick Garland was on the ground even as bodies were still being recovered, examining the crime scene and preparing for an eventual prosecution. Now a federal appeals court judge, Judge Garland was then the highest-ranking Justice Department official dispatched to Oklahoma City in the aftermath of the bombing. He spent the ensuing weeks helping to start the case, and later supervised the prosecutors from department headquarters.

Source: N. Y. Times, "Bombing case", by Charlie Savage Apr 27, 2010

Merrick Garland: Oversaw death penalty prosecution for Oklahoma City bombers

Garland's former colleagues say that the Oklahoma City case had a lasting emotional impact on Garland. At the time, he was the second-ranking figure in the office of the deputy attorney general, Jamie Gorelick. Ms. Gorelick recalled he insisted that she send him to Oklahoma City to help begin the investigation in person. "He not only volunteered," Gorelick recalled, "he basically said, `You need to let me go.' "

Several prosecutors who worked on the case said Garland worked tirelessly to help run the investigation; overseeing search warrants, interacting with other law enforcement agencies and meeting with surviving victims. He appeared in court for the preliminary hearings of the two main suspects, Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols.

Garland was involved in major decisions including seeking the death penalty for McVeigh and Nichols. Garland apparently did not object to that proposal. McVeigh was found guilty and executed in 2001. Nichols is serving a sentence of life without parole.)

Source: N. Y. Times, "Bombing case", by Charlie Savage Apr 27, 2010

Hakeem Jeffries: Alternative sentencing for non-violent offenders

Indicate which principles you support regarding crime.
  • Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
  • Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenders.
  • Support hate crime legislation.
    Source: N. Y. Congressional 2008 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2008

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