Outrageous NYC Judge Releases (Without Bail) Men Who Threatened to Kill Cops
A Brooklyn judge is facing criticism after releasing two men who threatened to kill NYPD officers following last weekend's murder of two cops.
Criminal Court Judge Laura Johnson ruled on consecutive days this week that the two men could be released without bail, overruling prosecutors who wanted to keep them in custody.
Johnson allowed Devon Coley (above), an alleged gang member, to go free after he posted the photo below on Facebook.
Coley wrote “73Nextt” - an apparent reference to the 73rd Precinct in the Brownsville neighborhood of Brooklyn. The post came just hours after the execution of officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu.
Prosecutors wanted Coley, 18, held on $250,000 bail. He's reportedly already facing charges in separate cases for assault and gun possession.
In a subsequent ruling, Johnson freed Travis Maye, 26, after his violent altercation with officers.
According to court records, Maye took swings at cops at Flatbush Avenue and Prospect Place at around 1:35 a.m., socking one officer in the eye and sending him to the hospital.
After being pepper-sprayed, stunned with a Taser and put in handcuffs, Maye, 26, ranted at the cops that he would “find out where you live” and “get you,” court papers say.
“You will die!” he allegedly ranted.
Johnson, however, sided with defense lawyer Adam Lubow.
Johnson said the incident “appears to have been an extraordinarily emotion-laden and hectic situation,” adding that it would be “wrong” to impose bail “because of the current climate.”
We heard some reaction to these cases on "Fox and Friends" today from Sgt. Patrick Cullen, president of the New York State Supreme Court Officers Association.
Cullen said the judge is sending a message that attacks against cops is "acceptable."
"It is dangerous and tragic. But what it does most though is it strengthens our resolve to be as alert and as vigilant as we've been to make sure we are always on the lookout for those who seek to do harm to law officers," said Cullen.
He pointed out that these sorts of rulings frustrate police officers every day.
"This is newsworthy now because of current events but every day those of us who work in the courts, see people released who probably shouldn't be," said Cullen.
Johnson's term expires at the end of the year and Mayor Bill de Blasio - heavily criticized by NYPD officers - will have to decide whether to keep her on the bench.
Cullen said the mayor could take a "small step on a very long road to recovery" if Johnson is not re-appointed.