ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — At a Wednesday afternoon news conference, Governor Kathy Hochul addressed concerns and redoubled support for the ‘Less is More’ law, signed days ago.
Gov. Hochul took questions from reporters following the Constellation Brands press event, and was pressed on concerns raised by law enforcement regarding the new law.
The Governor told reporters people on parole who are sent back behind bars on technical violations “have literally paid their debt to society. They’ve already been incarcerated and they’re out on parole, and we’re simply saying the jails don’t have room to keep these individuals who are not dangerous to society who are being held on their parole violation.”
The law is intended to reduce the amount of people incarcerated for technical violations in New York State, such as missing a parole officer appointment or violating curfew.
Police say 17 local inmates were released as part of the law on Tuesday; one of whom was rearrested and charged with second-degree murder in a July case.
Gov. Hochul affirmed police should charge those they see fit, and said people shouldn’t be in jail on technical violations alone.
“Anyone who the police think is guilty of murder, they can build a case on murder, I believe they did the right think here. These people should be in jail, and I support what the law enforcement did,” said Governor Hochul.
On Tuesday, local police chiefs expressed concern over the new law after the 17 inmates were released. The local chiefs showed support for parole technicalities, saying they keep people on the straight-and-narrow.
Randy Cimino, an ex-parolee and local drug abuse support advocate, told News 8 rules for people on parole are needed.
“You’re not helping these men and women by just letting them not follow rules, not go by any kind of guideline and not have any consequence for breaking the rules,” said Cimino.
Hochul said New York’s new policy follows those of states “who have a policy that says, individuals should not be held in jail on a technicality.”