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Monday, July 11, 2011

New York Courts Hit New Low

Long harm of the law
The New York Post by William J. Gorta  -  July 12, 2011

Wait to be arraigned 'inhumane'

Hundreds of prisoners are languishing in holding pens -- in violation of a court order -- as overtime and budget cuts wreak havoc with Brooklyn arraignments, The Post has learned.  According to data obtained by The Post, nearly half of the prisoners awaiting arraignment at the start of each of six days last week had been held longer than 24 hours without seeing a judge.  The arraignment courts were so jammed over the Fourth of July weekend that on July 3 more than 57 percent had exceeded the 24-hour limit.  And it only got worse on Independence Day, when it hit 59 percent, with more than a quarter of those 379 prisoners having waited more than 36 hours.  Between Sunday and Friday, July 8, nearly 44 percent of the people in the system had been there in excess of 24 hours.  The delays -- spurred by $170 million in budget slashes that included weekend courtroom hours -- are in direct violation of a 1991 Court of Appeals ruling that any delay over 24 hours was "unnecessary."  "Last week was not a great week, and the holiday weekend did not help matters," said Judge Lawrence Marks, administrative director of the Office of Court Administration.  Delays are common throughout the city, he noted, but "Brooklyn has presented the greatest challenge."  And while he insisted that the daily snapshot numbers exaggerate the extent of the problem, his own figures were not much better: On average, 37 percent had been illegally held more than 24 hours without seeing a judge.  Reduced weekend hours, in place since June 11, are causing the system to bottleneck, Marks said.  Arraignments used to run from 9 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Those days now have a single shift of 1 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.  A 3-11 p.m. shift and a third arraignment part were added on Fridays to try to reduce the weekend workload, Marks said.  Still, many of the people arrested over the weekend finally got to see a judge yesterday afternoon.  "They arrested me on Friday at 5:30 [p.m.], and I just got out now -- 72 hours later. It ain't right," said Donald Haywood, 16, after being arraigned on assault and weapon-possession charges.  Ana Rios, arrested for alleged criminal mischief Saturday night, waited about 40 hours.  "It's horrible," she said. "It's inhumane. There's nothing clean back there."  Defense lawyer James Kirshner said the holding pens were "packed like sardines" yesterday.  And that, said Dennis Quirk, head of the court officers' union, endangers his members and the public.  "It is a safety issue, definitely a major security problem," he said.  A lawyer can get a writ of habeas corpus from a Supreme Court justice to force officials to produce the prisoner, but "by the time you're finished, the guy will probably be out anyway," Kirshner said.  "It's a law with no effect." Defense attorney Gerald Lefcourt, who submitted a friend-of-the-court brief in the 1991 appeal, knows that all too well.  "This has been a perennial problem," he said. "It just goes on and on."


disgusted said...

This shows where Jonathan Lippman's priorities are.

Anonymous said...

What did you expect?

This is how they intend to force the legislature to give them all money they want.

The only function the Administration of the Court has, is to provide as much employment to as many of their friends and families for as much as they can get. Just look at how many employees make well over $100,000.

Lippman and Pfau keep the Courts in a disorganized mess so no one will be able to know what is going on and no one will be able to clean it up.

Saw this coming months ago when Lippman asked for that ridiculous increase in their budget and then threatened what would happen if he didn't get it.

This was his self-fulfilling prophecy.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Have you actually filed your class action lawsuit?

You only need one person to file one.

Has you case been granted class action status?

You may be frustrated, but don't think that many who post here haven't done a lot of things that have not been successful and have put themselves in danger.

Anonymous said...

Cannot join your action as there is pending a very long time Federal action in place, that is being manipulated by OCA constantly..but I blog here to alert everyone to the facts of judicial treachery.
Not everyone who complains can participate in legal action and your judgmental and aggressive attitude is a turnoff.
Post what you have...anyone who reads knows if they can or want to join...and please be kinder in your reprimands.
I have litigation, but I do not fault anyone for not doing same, as an OCA pltf takes tremendous strength, contacts, investigators , time and patience.....a person's entire life is on hold for almost a decade.

Anonymous said...

they don't let you file, they pay off or threaten the next attorney, complaints get tossed, they start a whole terrorizing the innocent using a bunch of cheats & liars, the only thing you can do, is discredit the cheats! then OCA will listen and only then!

Anonymous said...

Contempt of court for Lippman and Pfau. Equal justice for all, including the Chief Judge and his poodle.

Anonymous said...
Ex wife kidnapped my son to columbia feds/embassy will not help me advice needed and help please contact me via my blog thanks citizens.

Anonymous said...

Investigative Reporters and Editors

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Directory of Investigative Journalists:

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Center for Investigative Reporting:

Judicial Independence
Investigating Conflicts, Influence, and Agenda in the Federal Courts
About CIR

Founded in 1977, the Center for Investigative Reporting is the nation's oldest nonprofit investigative news organization, producing multimedia reporting that has impact and is relevant to people's lives. Building on our long track record of award-winning print, broadcast and web reporting, CIR is now seeking to help lead the way in transforming journalism for the 21st century

Judicial Watch:

About Judicial Watch:
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Other Source for Investigative publications and Reporters: (this page has hyperlinks)

Notable Investigative Reporters (Current day)

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Bureaus, centers, and institutes for investigations
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Center for Public Integrity
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Television programs
Exposé: America's Investigative Reports (PBS documentary series)

External links
North America, Investigative Journalism Centers or Bureaus
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Education Centers
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See Video of Senator John L. Sampson's 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption

The first hearing, held in Albany on June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:

               Video of 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption
               The June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:
               CLICK HERE TO SEE Part 1
               CLICK HERE TO SEE Part 2