RK&O partners join amicus brief to preserve bail precedent

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June 16, 2020

RK&O partners David B. Massey and Lee S. Richards III joined more than 50 fellow former federal prosecutors in filing an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in support of bail for two attorney activists who were charged with throwing a Molotov cocktail at a marked police car in New York City. 

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York has argued that the defendants are “a continual danger to society” and has declined to credit their legal careers and community ties as mitigating factors for bail.  

Messrs. Massey and Richards and other former prosecutors disagreed, stating “This Court should reject the government’s argument that factors existing prior to an alleged offense — such as strong family and community ties, stable employment, stable addresses, and lack of criminal history — are inherently insufficient to defeat the presumption and support bail in a case involving dangerousness.”  They went on to say that the U.S. Attorney’s bail stance “contradicts settled bail law” and could “risk altering lower courts’ assessments of routine bail applications.”

 Click here to read the amicus brief

Related Media Coverage

56 former prosecutors write to appeals court in support of bail for lawyers accused of throwing molotov cocktail at police vehicle – The Washington Post