Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) faced backlash at the start of the week for advocating for lowering bail amounts set by prosecutors in the New York City court system, which comes just a day after a man who was out on “inappropriately low” bail killed at least five people and injured well over 40 others during a Christmas parade in a different part of the country.
“We have grave concerns that excessive bail amounts are leading to unnecessary pretrial detention and contributing to a humanitarian crisis in New York City’s jail system, particularly on Rikers Island,” AOC and two other members of Congress said in a statement. “Fourteen people have died this year in the custody of New York City Department of Correction. Condemning thousands of individuals to languish in an environment plagued by persistent overcrowding and mounting violence as they await trial is not acceptable, and risks violating the federal civil rights of these individuals. If these conditions are not addressed, federal intervention may be necessary to protect detainees from additional harm.”
The Daily Wire reported:
Ocasio-Cortez’s remarks come just one day after a 39-year-old black male was taken into custody by law enforcement officials and charged with five counts of first-degree intentional homicide after driving over dozens of people in a Christmas parade. …
Earlier this month, the suspect was arrested for allegedly punching his child’s mother in the face and hitting her with his car at a gas station. The criminal complaint from the incident says that “officers observed tire tracks on her left pants leg.”
The suspect was later released on $1,000 bail, which the Milwaukee Co. District Attorney said in statement today was “inappropriately low in light of the nature of the recent charges and the pending charges” against the suspect. “The bail recommendation in this case is not consistent with the approach of the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office toward matters involving violent crime, nor was it consistent with the risk assessment of the defendant prior to setting of bail,” the statement added.
The following are some of the notable reactions that AOC received over the statement she published on her Congressional Twitter account:
- Ben Shapiro, The Daily Wire: “Your timing is…odd.”
- Mike Cernovich, political commentator: “The day after a massacre occurred in Wisconsin by a violent criminal released under bail reform policies, AOC posts this.”
- Dana Loesch, radio host: “Because Waukesha wasn’t bad enough apparently.”
- Matt Walsh, The Daily Wire: “Holy sh**. @AOC is a demonic sociopath. A guy out on $1,000 bail just mowed down a bunch of women and children, and her immediate response is to ensure that even more violent criminals are released back into their communities. These people are really, truly, diabolically evil.”
- Erick Erickson, radio host: “The Squad really is a House Freedom Caucus parody project, right? I refuse to believe these people aren’t part of a satirical project poking fun at the left.”
- Matt Whitlock, political strategist: “The day after a man kills 5 people and injures 48 while out on a $1,000 bond (after trying to kill someone ELSE with his car), AOC comes out with a letter arguing that bails are too high. Can’t make it up.”
- Tom Fitton, Judicial Watch: “The extremist Left opposes incarceration, in principle. Don’t be distracted by arguments about bail, criminal justice reform, etc. The communist revolutionaries believe the criminal justice system has no moral authority to jail anyone (other than their political enemies).”
- Dan McLaughlin, National Review: “Today was really not the day to be pushing to get more dangerous people out on bail. Really, really not.”