For anyone concerned about protecting the rights of crime victims – or about keeping New Yorkers safe from crime – these have been very troubling times in our State government.
While the State Parole Board keeps setting free murderers, cop-killers and domestic terrorists, the Senate Democrats just passed a soft-on-crime "Criminals' Bill of Rights" that will hurt the ability of prosecutors and law enforcement to keep dangerous criminals off our streets.
In contrast, I’ll never stop fighting for the rights of crime victims and their families, as well as to support our law enforcement professionals who put their lives on the line to keep our families and communities safe and free from harm. That's why I was proud to join with my Senate Republican colleagues in recently unveiling our comprehensive “Victims’ Justice Agenda.”
Our Victims’ Justice Agenda aims to reform the parole system to keep violent criminals behind bars without parole, while also easing the parole process for suffering victims, families and the public. It will help tip the scales of justice back toward law-abiding citizens and the victims of crimes -- not the perpetrators.
The following are some of the common sense bills sponsored by our Senate Republican Conference as part of our Victims’ Justice Agenda to ensure justice for crime victims and strengthen public safety for all New Yorkers:
S1995 - Provides that the sentence for murder in the first degree shall be life imprisonment without parole.
S357 - Authorizes imposition of life imprisonment without parole sentence for persistent violent felony offenders upon conviction of a violent felony offense when such person has previously been subjected to two or more predicate violent felony convictions.
S1410 - Requires that all comments and testimony made by a third party either in support or opposition in a parole hearing shall be considered when coming to a decision; adds provisions relating to confidentiality of victim statements.
S4127 - Requires that all victim impact statements in New York state be video recorded; requires that the members of the parole board review all relevant victim impact statements prior to the conduct of a parole hearing.
S1745 - Provides that any person interested in the grant or denial of discretionary release shall have the right to submit a written statement of views in support of or in opposition to the granting of discretionary release that the parole board may consider.
S5320 - Requires unanimous consent of the Parole Board to release an inmate on parole.
S3734 - Requires inmates to have an acceptable residence to qualify for parole.
S4354 - Enacts "Lorraine's Law"; increases from twenty-four to sixty months, the time for which reconsideration for parole for a violent felony offense shall be determined.
S3268 - Enacts "Cesar's law" to require the retaking of parolees, who abscond from the supervision of the state board of parole.
S4644 - Enacts "The Domestic Violence Protection Act -Brittany's Law" requiring registration of violent felony offenders; sets forth duties of the division of criminal justice services; establishes a special telephone number; requires the division to maintain a sub directory of violent predators.
S1406 - “Clara’s Law” Requires health care facilities to report incidents of a sexual offense to the departments of health and education.