TOMS RIVER-Shore News Network has been called “fake news” by a man whose firm makes millions of peddling bail reform and strong armed by the NJ court system to try to get us to stop covering the fiasco, but the Toms River Policeman’s Benevolent Association said this week it’s a very serious problem.
We were once the only media outlet covering this topic, but now many others are following suit, seeing the real dangers to the communities they serve.
At first police officers and prosecutors were camera shy when it came to speaking out against the reform. Especially after a gag order from the District Attorney’s office was reportedly sent down the chain of command, effectively locking out senior appointed and elected law enforcement officials from speaking out further on the subject.
Now some in the law enforcement rank and file are beginning to speak out.
The Toms River PBA issued a statement saying that the problem is “very serious” for everyone in New Jersey, that is except for the criminals.
“This NJ Bail Reform is becoming a serious problem for everyone in NJ except criminals. Keep a close eye on this problem,” the PBA said. “Sometimes you have to scratch your head and wonder what our duly elected politicians were thinking when they made this garbage law.”
To date, Governor Chris Christie and Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno have collectively buried their heads in the sand on the subject.
The only one willing to address the fundamental flaws in the program at the state level was Peter McAleer, a communications Manager Administrative Office of the Courts. McAleer contacted SNN after our first investigative report on bail reform, in an attempt to insert rainbows and unicorns into the story, but after notifying mcaleer that we would only accept his comments in writing, via email, he disappeared.
A second public information officer from the state court system wanted to engage us in debate over the reform, but we responded we would only like to hear directly from the Governor himself on the subject and we’re not interested in speaking to aides armed with marketing data written by the company who has made at least $7 million pushing this reform in New Jersey.
To date, the Governor’s office has yet to reply to our requests and neither has Gubernatorial candidate Kim Guadagno.
A Facebook page (Not affiliated with SNN) has been established and is keeping a daily tab on bail reform failures all over the state.