Months before Governor Cuomo’s new bail reform law went into effect on January 1st opponents had already been warning that the bill would eventually increase crime within the state, and in particular within the “big apple” due to its revolving-door guidelines of eliminating bail for repeat offenders.
Both law enforcement organizations along with state procurators around the country were especially concerned that career criminals would use the law, as a “get-out-of-jail” card to re-offend or worst yet perhaps target witnesses.
However not even law enforcement organizations and procurators could envision that within less then 3-weeks, their concerns would become reality, and New Yorkers would be faced with another dangerous threat to their civil liberties, complements of Democratic lawmakers in Albany.
A homeless and violent derelict released from police custody (thanks to the new law), after being arrested Friday night for aggressive panhandling near a bank entrance in Greenwich Village, was arrested again a few hours later, for aggravated assault, after viciously punching a young woman in the face resulting in two teeth being knocked out.
Eugene Webb, 26, was arrested Friday evening after assaulting the 23-year old woman in lower Manhattan. The victim, who lives on the Upper West Side, was walking on W. Houston Street near Sullivan Street around 6:10 a.m. when Webb suddenly punched her in the face.
The unidentified woman attempted to run away, however, Webb pushed her against a parked yellow cab before fleeing the scene.
Webb had also attacked another women-only days before, in midtown Manhattan near Grand Central Terminal where daily commuters and out-of-towners converge.
According to police, the 35-year old woman had just left Grand Central Terminal when Webb suddenly pounced on her punching her in the face, knocking her to the ground, where he continued beating her, kicking the back of her head as she laid on the ground.
However, because of the new state law, Judge Ann Thompson had no choice on Friday but to let Webb go, despite a long and violent rap sheet, with at least 4-prior arrests for assaults.
At his arraignment, Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Ashlyn Rich told Judge Thompson there was, “clear and convincing evidence that the defendant (Webb) is fully capable of moving around Manhattan, at will,” and asked that Webb be held on $10,000 cash bail, however because of the new law the Judge was forced to release Webb.
Webb smiling, as he left the courthouse, was back at his old turf within hours, aggressive panhandling and threatening passerby’s demanding money within 10 feet of a Chase Bank entrance on W. 4th Street near Grove Street at about 7 p.m., authorities said.
However this incident is simply one of several being reported regarding this ridicules law, aside from violent predators assaulting law-abiding citizens, the law is also responsible for releasing Manhattan’s notorious “Burberry Bandit” who was recently released from prison under the bail reform law.
Dapper bank robber Cornell Neilly, 29, was recently paroled, after being linked in 2019 to a series of Manhattan bank robberies.
According to police, the skilled bank thief attempted to rob 7-banks from June 22nd to July 3rd and was successful with 4, netting him a total of $10, 600 dollars.
On Saturday Neilly who was out of jail less than a month once again attempted to rob a Chase Bank branch on Lexington Avenue, when he casually strolled into the midtown bank and handed the teller a note reading, “This is a robbery. $3,500 now. Thanks,”
However according to prosecutors, Neilly lost his nerve when the teller alerted her supervisor, and he ran off, only to be nabbed 45 minutes later.
“The defendant admitted to the attempted bank robbery and, channeling famed bank robber the infamous Willie Sutton exclaimed when he got caught “I did it because I need the money,’” Assistant District Attorney Jillian Shartrand said during Neilly’s arraignment Sunday.
Shartrand then informed the court, “As the defendant himself noted, he just got out of jail on Dec. 16th because of bail reform.”