Swift delivery of justice, like just about everything else in 2020, has been a challenge and anything but status quo.  Who better to talk about it than Broome County's District Attorney.

Michael Korchak makes a return appearance on the weekly, local public affairs program Southern Tier Close Up and offers an update on the latest situation with the criminal justice system as cases of COVID-19 have again been increasing, again delaying in-court proceedings like trials.

Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News (file)
Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News (file)

The Republican says the system can already be time-consuming by the nature of exploring and presenting facts in criminal cases but all that is being further complicated by numerous delays and rules concerning juries and court facilities.

Korchak says the system was already in a transition with the bail reform in New York that went into effect prior to the pandemic at the start of 2020.  That provision continues to be contentious as problems that were encountered early on with what may be inappropriate releases of suspects have not been resolved and focus has experienced shifts driven by the pandemic, social unrest, the Black Lives Matter movement and calls for police reform.

Korchak also provides a little inside look into what the District Attorney's office really does.  He laugh that he doesn't have a goal of convicting everybody he sees nor does he get paid 'per-conviction.'  We find the D.A.'s office is actually a kind of criminal justice triage, evaluating the validity of accusations and other aspects of alleged crimes and transgressions.

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It's an interesting look into the world of the local criminal justice system on the Southern Tier Close Up.

Southern Tier Close Up airs Saturdays at 6:04 a.m. on News Radio 1290 and you can check out this and previous programs any time on the WNBF podcast.

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