MINEOLA, NY – Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas on April 30 shared an update on her office’s efforts during the coronavirus pandemic.
DA Singas said via email, “I hope you and your family are staying healthy during this difficult time. This crisis has brought on unprecedented challenges for our court systems but I wanted to ensure you we are working for justice and your safety everyday. I wanted to give you an update on what's happening in the Nassau County District Attorney’s office.”
Of the courts going digital, Singas said, “Many of our court proceedings have gone digital to ensure the safety of everyone involved. We are in communication with judges and holding arraignments through virtual courtrooms. My office is complying with the state’s new discovery laws digitally to ensure a smooth flow of information between prosecutors and defense attorneys. There should never be a pause on justice and we are continuing our important work through this crisis.”
On domestic violence, Singas said, “Nassau County's domestic violence felony arrests and child sex abuse arrests are down since March 15th but that is not good news. We fear that many instances of abuse are being underreported or not reported at all during the shelter in place orders. Please call friends and loved ones to check in on them if you fear they may be at risk.”
Singas also told Fox5 News in New York, “We are very concerned for women, for children, the elderly because usually crimes against that vulnerable population usually does take place behind closed doors. They don't have the relief of being able to talk to a friend, to go to a domestic violence advocacy group for help.”
Of coronavirus scams, Singas said, “My office has seen an increase in identity theft scams. Thieves are taking advantage of this crisis with schemes promising fake tests and cures for COVID-19. If you or anyone you know has been affected by a COVID-19 related scam, we set up a confidential hotline. The Nassau County District Attorney Coronavirus Scam Hotline is 516-571-3505.”
On addiction services, “We know addiction does not stop during a pandemic. The NCDA’s Office of Alternative Prosecution and Resources is working with the Nassau County Heroin Prevention Task Force through this crisis to help partner the afflicted with services and treatment providers. We are also working with defendants who are good candidates for alternative prosecution programs. My office established New Hope to provide a safe environment for those with addiction to stabilize in preparation for their next steps in recovery. New Hope remains open 24/7 and can be reached at 516-546-7070.”
“My office is continuing to work hard for you through this crisis. I hope you and your family stay safe during this time,” Singas concluded.