Statements

STATEMENT FROM QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ ON THE U.S. SUPREME COURT’S DECISION TO OVERTURN ROE V. WADE

June 24, 2022

A mere day after SCOTUS decided to put the lives of New Yorkers at risk by striking down our long-standing restrictions on guns, the majority of Supreme Court Justices have now decided to put the lives of millions of women across the entire nation at risk by overturning Roe v. Wade. This decision is beyond…

STATEMENT FROM QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ ON THE U.S. SUPREME COURT’S DECISION IN NEW YORK STATE RIFLE & PISTOL ASSOCIATION INC. V. BRUEN

June 23, 2022

The Supreme Court’s ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association Inc. v. Bruen significantly hinders our ongoing efforts to keep New Yorkers safe from gun violence. I am extremely disappointed in this decision by the highest court which creates undue burden on the commonsense gun laws in this State. We remain committed to…

QUEENS GRAND JURY DECLINES TO INDICT IN CHOKEHOLD CASE

September 14, 2021

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said today that a grand jury considering charges against former police officer David Afanador has found a no true bill and declined to indict. The District Attorney had charged Afanador with using a chokehold on a man he arrested in Far Rockaway on June 21, 2020. “While the law prohibits…

STATEMENT OF QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ ON RECENT GUN VIOLENCE

June 7, 2021

After a weekend of bloodshed that included the senseless death of a young child, it is more important than ever for our communities to come together. Our grief cannot weaken our resolve to stop gun violence. Justin Wallace’s death – indeed, every shooting – underscores the urgent need to stand together with our communities, clergy…

STATEMENT BY QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ AND PEOPLE’S DISMISSAL MOTION – BELL, BOLT & JOHNSON

June 4, 2021

Today, my office moved to dismiss indictments against George Bell, Gary Johnson and Rohan Bolt, who were convicted of the December 21, 1996, murders of Ira “Mike” Epstein and NYPD Police Officer Charles Davis during a robbery attempt of Mr. Epstein’s check cashing business. This follows a thorough, three-month investigation by Executive Assistant District Attorney…

QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ ON VANDALISM AT THE VIETNAM VETERANS MEMORIAL IN ELMHURST PARK

June 2, 2021

The attack on this memorial, in this park, is a foul, criminal act.   This is the only Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Queens that pays homage to all the fallen service men and women from this borough. It exists as a place where we can all reflect and pay tribute.   I am proud to…

STATEMENT BY DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ

December 10, 2020

Today, in court, this Office joined in a motion to vacate two significant convictions from over twenty years ago. This decision is based on clear evidence of unconstitutional discrimination in jury selection.  Specifically, a set of notes found in the trial files of a single ADA, who resigned from the office in the late 1990s,…

CITING EVIDENCE OF IMPROPER DISCRIMINATION IN JURY SELECTION BY AN ADA IN THE 1990S, QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY FILES JOINT MOTION WITH DEFENSE TO REVERSE TWO CONVICTIONS

December 10, 2020

Citing decades-old evidence of improper discrimination based on race, sex, religion, and ethnicity in jury selection, Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced today that she has filed a joint motion with the defense counsel at the law firm Covington & Burling, LLP, to vacate the convictions of Santiago Valdez and Paul Morant.  Both men were…

Statement of the District Attorney’s Office to the Court on Robert Majors Case

October 20, 2020

On May 9th, 1997, a green van pulled up to a payroll delivery truck and 3 masked men exited, armed with 2 assault rifles and a handgun. They immediately opened fire upon the 2 guards, an off-duty NYPD detective and a retired NYPD police officer. A total of 52 shots were fired, including several while…

STATEMENT OF QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ ON THE PASSING OF FORMER QUEENS BOROUGH PRESIDENT CLAIRE SHULMAN

August 16, 2020

“I am extremely saddened to hear about the passing of Claire Shulman. I had the pleasure of working for Claire when she was the Queens Borough President – the first woman to hold the post. She was a trailblazer. A fierce leader who dedicated her life to bettering the lives of all Queens residents and…

Statement Regarding Chokeholds and Other Restraining Techniques

June 9, 2020

As we have seen recently with the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, and six years ago right here in New York City with the death of Eric Garner, the use of chokeholds and other holds or restraining techniques that can cut off the supply of oxygen to a person’s brain have an unacceptably high…

STATEMENT OF QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ IN SUPPORT OF REPEALING THE LOITERING LAW IN REGARDS TO PROSTITUTION

June 1, 2020

District Attorney Melinda Katz today announced her support for a bill that would repeal the crime of loitering for the purposes of prostitution from the New York State Penal Law. Since taking office on January 1st the District Attorney has not charged or convicted a single individual for the crime of loitering for the purposes…

STATEMENT OF QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ ON CORONAVIRUS-INSPIRED HATE CRIMES

April 10, 2020

Queens is arguably the most diverse county in the world and home to the largest immigrant population in New York City. This diversity is our strength and makes Queens County an amazing place to live, work and visit. We are the World’s Borough and hate crimes have no place here. Crimes motivated by hate are…

STATEMENT OF QUEENS DISTRICT ATTORNEY MELINDA KATZ

March 28, 2020

This morning, I was informed that I have tested positive for COVID-19. I had been exposed on Wednesday, March 17th and informed of the exposure on Saturday March 21st. I have been sheltering in place before and since that exposure, and while I was mildly symptomatic for a time I have not experienced any symptoms…

BP LEE, DA KATZ MESSAGE TO SURVIVORS DURING “STAY AT HOME” URGE

March 20, 2020

QUEENS, NY – Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz and Acting Queens Borough President Sharon Lee affirmed the borough’s unwavering commitment to protecting and serving survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, child and elder abuse, in light of the urge for all non- essential workers and their families to “Stay At Home” during the rapidly-developing COVID-19…

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