Raising the Age of Criminal Responsibility
Ending a Decades-Long Injustice
With the passage of the FY 2018 State Budget, the age of criminal responsibility will be raised to 18 years of age, ensuring that minors who commit non-violent crimes are provided with age-appropriate services and opportunities to lead productive lives.
Specialized Juvenile Detention Facilities
Rather than being placed in adult jails and prisons, young people will be placed in specialized juvenile detention facilities certified by the State Office of Children and Family Services, in conjunction with the State Commission of Correction.
The Raise the Age legislation will take effect for 16-year-olds on October 1, 2018 and 17-year-olds on October 1, 2019.
Improving New York's Criminal Justice System
These reforms, from raising the age of criminal responsibility to improving witness identification procedures, will help create a stronger, fairer and more just system for all.
Governor Cuomo will alleviate the barrier of a criminal conviction for people convicted of non-violent crimes when they were minors & who have lived crime-free for 10 years.
Restoring the Integrity of our Criminal Justice System
In July 2015, Governor Cuomo appointed the NYS Attorney General as a special prosecutor in matters relating to the deaths of unarmed civilians caused by law enforcement officers.
The Council is tasked with identifying barriers formerly incarcerated people face and making recommendations for change, including issues ranging from employment to housing to health care.
Expanding New York's DNA Databank
Preventing Crimes and Exonerating the Innocent
"All Crimes DNA" Expansion
New York was the first state in the nation to require the collection of DNA samples from anyone convicted of a felony or Penal Law misdemeanor. This measure dramatically expanded New York’s DNA database to better enable state and local law enforcement to convict the guilty and exonerate the innocent.
Access to DNA Testing for Certain Criminal Defendants
Defendants in certain criminal cases are allowed to obtain DNA testing prior to trial or, under appropriate circumstances, after conviction and following a plea, to demonstrate their innocence.
Access to Discovery for Certain Criminal Defendants After Trial
In limited circumstances, defendants are able to seek discovery of property and other materials to demonstrate their innocence after their conviction.
Creating a stronger, healthier and safer state for all New Yorkers
In partnership with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, NYS developed a training program for volunteer attorneys to assist incarcerated individuals with clemency petitions.
In 2017, Governor Cuomo signed legislation investing over $200 million to combat the heroin and opioid epidemic in New York.