"We can't let the cure be worse than the problem," President Trump emphasized to the press several weeks ago when talking about coronavirus. Perhaps he should have been stressing that message to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo instead.
Eight registered sex offenders were among those recently released from Monroe County Jail in New York, according to WIVB, as part of statewide orders by Governor Andrew Cuomo to allow 1,100 parole violators out of prison due to concerns about the coronavirus.
“We’re releasing people who are in jails because they violated parole for non-serious reasons,” Cuomo told MSNBC last week.
More than 50 prisoners were released from the jail on Saturday. Among the inmates released, three of them are level 3 sex offenders and are deemed by NY courts as "likely to re-offend". All three of the Level 3 offenders that were released have been convicted of the rape of minors.
Sadly, we're not making this up. Instead of being in jail, the former prisoners are now being put up at the Holiday Inn Express in Greece, NY. Patrick Phelan, the Greece, NY Chief of Police, said:“It doesn’t make any sense. If you could present an argument to me that makes sense, I’m willing to listen. But this doesn’t make any sense.”
“So you have a violent criminal who’s done time in state prison who’s been given the chance of parole, and not followed the conditions of their parole. That’s who you’re talking about right now,” Phelan continued.
He also said that he wasn't notified of the releases when they happened: “We weren’t told by anyone. I think good practice would be if you’re going to release convicted felons. Some of them very violent some of those level 3 sex offenders, You might want to give law enforcement the heads up.”
Meanwhile the Department of Corrections and Community Services, a statewide organization responsible for the releases, said in response: “This significant action is being taken in response to a growing number of COVID-19 cases in local jails over the past few days and weeks. Our top priority remains the public health and safety of New Yorkers during this global public health emergency and this measure will further protect a vulnerable population from contracting and transmitting this infectious disease.”
"That's right at the edge of a neighborhood. It's a couple hundred feet from a school," Phelan said of where the convicted felons are being put up.
"Once again, it doesn't make sense to me in a jail where you have no cases of the virus. There are zero cases. No one has it. No one is sick in the jail," he concluded.
You can watch WIVB's full report on the prisoners here: