NBC Fact-Checks New York Governor Hochul’s Claims on Released Repeat Offenders [Video]

by J Pelkey
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NBC reporter Melissa Russo sat down with the Governor of New York, Kathy Hochul, for a one-on-one interview last week.

During the interview, Russo questioned Hochul on Crime, Bail Reform, Abortion and her Opponent, Lee Zeldin.

Breaking Digest reported that Republican gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin won the debate with Democrat Kathy Hochul.

Zeldin performed well throughout the debate and blasted Hochul on New York’s crime problem.

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From the NBC interview:

Russo:  You said during the debate that Lee Zeldin is trying to scare voters. Does that mean that you think he’s exaggerating the crime problem?

Hochul: I think he is trying to scare voters and not offer a legitimate plan. You cannot say you’re tough on crime and be soft on guns.

Russo: And you often pivot to that point. But I’m just wondering, are you saying that he’s creating a worse impression of crime…

Hochul: No, what I’m saying is he does not have a serious crime plan…

Russo: Is there more to do on bail reform?

Hochul:  I took strong steps. I gave more discretion to judges, more power to district attorneys. It’s been in place a few months. I want it to work, but I’m absolutely willing to look at it all over again in the next session, if you find out that there’s areas still weakness.

Russo: Not that long ago in New York, in our city, crime was down, incarceration was down, stop and frisk was down. How is it okay that we’re now seeing people who commit a dozen burglaries face zero consequences?

Hochul: That’s not okay. It’s not okay. That’s why I need the system to work with the laws we put in place. We changed the laws. Repeat offenders need to be held.


NBC conducted informal interviews with New Yorkers to gauge public opinion on Hochul’s approach to the city’s rising crime rate; the responses were mostly negative.

“I care about Kathy Hochul being elected. I’m nervous about that because she wasn’t voted in,” One New Yorker told NBC.

“Bad people are going to get their hands on guns no matter how many laws you write. That’s why they’re bad people because they don’t follow the rules,” one man said.

“What is she doing? Making a mess. People are getting released on charges they should be in jail,” another woman told NBC.

Russo then asked Hochul about the subject of nonviolent crimes.

Then NBC fact-checked Hochul’s claim on released repeat offenders.

“But despite Hochul’s changes, repeat offenders are still being released because New York’s new laws still require judges to use the least restrictive bail. Meaning, even when bail is set, it’s set low,” NBC said.

Breaking Digest previously reported that a Buffalo mother blames Kathy Hochul’s no-cash bail for her daughter’s murder.

Adam Bennefield, 45, who has a prior conviction for kidnapping another ex at gunpoint, is now charged with fatally shooting his 30-year-old wife, Keaira Bennefield.

Keaira’s mother, Tammy Hudson, spoke about her daughter’s execution-style death on Oct. 5, when Adam Bennefield allegedly crashed into her car, pulled out a shotgun and killed her with her children in the back seat.

Adam Bennefield had been released from jail less than 24 hours before the killing for savagely beating Keaira in an attack she caught on camera.

Keaira posted the video to her Facebook page on the night of Sept. 28, showing her being punched, kicked, and slapped by Adam. Kearia wrote on the Facebook post: “this is what this man dose to me but i’m always treated like i’m the abuser!”

A week later, Adam was arrested for the beating but was charged only with misdemeanors, and he was able to walk out of Cheektowaga Town Court.

As far as Hudson is concerned, Hochul’s no-cash-bail law has directly led to her daughter’s murder.

The mother of a slain New York teen also called Hochul out for being soft on crime and bail reform.

“The bail reform is not working… we have criminals coming out of jail, out of prison,” the mom said.

Please vote for Lee Zeldin!

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