Bratton: NY’s Crime Problem Began in Albany with Criminal Justice Reforms, Now They’re Trying to Fix It ‘After the Fact’

On Tuesday’s broadcast of CNN’s “Situation Room,” former Police Commissioner of Boston, Los Angeles, and New York Bill Bratton blamed the “well-intended, but incredibly flawed criminal justice reform set of initiatives” passed at the state level in New York for the state’s crime issues and argued that while he thinks New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) announced initiative on crime is a good first step, more will need to be done and “Police are the essential element in any plan trying to deal with this.”

Bratton said that crime in New York City had been “conquered” before 2018, “but then the legislature in Albany, in New York, got into the mix with a well-intended, but incredibly flawed criminal justice reform set of initiatives. And thus the crime epidemic began in New York. So, you don’t have to look too far as to where it began. It began basically in Albany. Now Albany’s going to try and solve it after the fact.”

He added, “Police are the essential element in any plan trying to deal with this. The governor came out with a seven-point initiative today…it’s a good first step. But I haven’t seen all the details of it, but a lot more is going to need to be done, including, in the case of New York City, New York state, reforming the reforms which are still basically having great impact. The court system is basically failing to function as a result of the coronavirus epidemic, very slow to get back into operation.”

Bratton concluded that there isn’t one solution for every city, adding, “But believe me, police are going to have to be an essential element to basically dealing with this problem. And right now, they’re demoralized, dispirited, defunded in many locations. New York City, for example, is still basically defunding their police by almost a billion dollars from last year.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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