Town of Newburgh police report rise in open warrants since bail reform

When it comes to bail reform and whether it works for New York, it depends on who you ask.

Blaise Gomez

Sep 8, 2022, 7:34 PM

Updated 623 days ago

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When it comes to bail reform and whether it works for New York, it depends on who you ask. 
Advocates for low bail or none at all for low-level crimes say it’s a huge success. 
Members of law enforcement largely disagree and blame bail reform for increased crime and overwhelmed police departments across the state. 
In the town of Newburgh, the police department shares a “Warrant Wednesday” post on their Facebook page each week, with mugshots of people who allegedly skipped out of court after getting arrested and released. 
This week, they posted 20 photos of defendants on the lam for low-level crimes that are not bail-eligible. 
“It’s just a revolving cycle,” said Town of Newburgh Lt. Adam Zeilberger. “Then they don’t show up for the next court appearance and the court issues more warrants for the same person and they get rearrested. It’s basically a catch and release.” 
Zeilberger says the department has seen a 40% increase in open warrants since the start of bail reform in 2020. 
He says there’s currently 80 open warrants, up from 19 in 2020. 
“It puts a tremendous strain on our resources because we have to transport for arraignments, and we have to assign two officers to do that,” said Zeilberger. “A lot of times, there’s individuals who just accumulate warrants and they are getting ROR’d and sometimes they have four or five warrants.” 
In the meantime, Newburgh police want the public to take a close look at the people they’re looking for and say anyone with information should give them a call. 
Those who would like to report a tip to the Town of Newburgh Police Department can call 845-564-1100.  


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