Editor’s Message by Jay Shapiro

It is difficult to gauge the passage of time. For many of us, in varied circumstances, it feels like the hours, days, weeks and months are dragging. Then, again, change has exploded upon us. And, of course, no one is used to adapting to life in phases.

But we must move forward. For our Section, we have to find unique ways to deal with the crisis that surrounds us and do our best to continue our efforts to protect the integrity of the criminal justice system.

Even this publication must adapt. The Criminal Law Newsletter has never published its on-line edition first, but now it has. We needed to get messages out to our community. We must provide the update to the bail statutes that were passed in 2020 and now broaden categories of cash bail and pre-trial release conditions. The chart prepared by Leah Nowotarski does just that. There were also new changes to the discovery law; 2019 marked the enactment of CPL Article 245. 2020 provides us with amendments to that new article. Hon. Barry Kamins has delivered a synopsis of those revisions.

Finally, the Chair’s Message appears on-line. Bob Masters delivers to us a challenge about these critical times. Bob’s words sound a clarion about what we need to do together to continue the effective practice of criminal law and guarantee the rights of all in these difficult times.

This on-line Newsletter is an exciting experiment. There’s more to come.