Assemblyman Dov Hikind Blasts DA Cyrus Vance For Handling Of Suspect In Anti-Semitic Incidents
NEW YORK (1010 WINS) – “All the Jewish are going to die” says a voice on a tape released by Assemblyman Dov Hikind today.
Hikind and Public Advocate Bill de Blasio are upset with Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance and two judges, saying they are going too easy on hate crime suspect David Haddad.
Vance flatly rejected that accusation, and a spokesman representing the New York State court system took issue with it as well.
Hear audio of an anti-Semitic call released by Hikind (WARNING: Content is offensive.)
Haddad, 56, was arrested for allegedly making anti-Semitic phone calls to elderly women and vandalized the inside of an apartment building.
Haddad is also being eyed in connection to a series of other threatening calls and acts of vandalism in Midwood, and was released after posting bail.
Hikind is upset with that, and with Vance for seeking a bail of only $5,000.
“What message are we sending to criminals out there who commit these heinous acts?” Hikind said. Hikind and de Blasio called on Vance and two judges to explain their decision.
Hikind says a couple who received a threatening phone call over the weekend found their car window smashed in yesterday. He wants Haddad re-arrested.
David Bookstaver of the Office of Court Administration suggested that what Hikind is calling for, in terms of bail, is legally impossible.
“In New York State bail can only be used to ensure a defendants return to court. It can not be used for preventive detention or for punishment. In this case it seems that Mr. Hikind would like to have bail used for another purpose which is simply not what the law allows,” Bookstaver said.
Haddad was released; one judge let him out on his own recognizance, another judge set bail at $2,500.
1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports
The Manhattan’s District Attorney also pushed back at Hikind.
“By law, prosecutors are not permitted to consider anything other than a defendant’s risk of flight when setting bail, including the defendant’s risk of re-offending or dangerousness to the community,” Vance said. “These guidelines are set by Assembly Member Hikind and the Legislature in Albany, and we look forward to reviewing any legislation he might propose to address whatever concerns he has.”
“Bail is also not intended as a gimmick or ‘message,’” Vance said. “Our commitment to aggressively prosecuting these cases is the true measure of how we treat bias crimes.”
Vance points out that securing bail in the first place for Haddad is noteworthy because Haddad is a “first-time, non violent offender charged with the lowest level felony.”
Vance went on to tout his Hate Crimes Unit and its work.
“Those familiar with the work of this Unit, from victims to advocates to others in law enforcement, know that no public office in New York City does more every day to fight hate crimes than the Manhattan DA’s Office.”
Should the bail have been higher? What do you make of the case? Sound off in our comments section below.