Manhattan DA Candidates Respond to NACDL & NYSACDL Trial Penalty Questionnaire

Manhattan DA Candidates Respond to NACDL & NYSACDL Trial Penalty Questionnaire 

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In March 2021, NYSACDL and NACDL released the first ever report examining the prevalence and impact of the trial penalty in New York, The New York State Trial Penalty: The Constitutional Right to Trial Under Attack, finding the trial penalty is a major driver of injustice in the state requiring widespread action by criminal justice practitioners to eradicate. 

Several months earlier, in a Manhattan District Attorney candidate forum hosted by VOCAL-NY, the then nine Democratic candidates pledged to end the “trial tax,” or the “trial penalty” as it is also known. 

To gain an understanding of how the candidates might accomplish this task, NYSACDL and NACDL asked each one to respond to a questionnaire focused on the trial penalty, its causes, and the impact it has on the criminal legal system in Manhattan. The questions we asked and the candidates' responses can be found here.