You are reading

Candidate Running on “Crimefighter’ Platform Launches Borough President Campaign

Jim Quinn (Jim Quinn for Queens campaign)

Jan. 12, 2020 By Allie Griffin

A former Assistant District Attorney has entered the Queens Borough President race, running as the tough-on-crime candidate among a group of left-leaning opponents.

Jim Quinn kicked off his campaign at a reception at Villa Erasmo in Middle Village Wednesday night, with a special election for the position to be held March 24.

Quinn, a lifelong Queens resident who lives in Richmond Hill with his wife, is aiming to make the switch to Borough Hall after working in the Queens District Attorney’s Office for 42 years.

He resigned from his position as Executive Assistant District Attorney of the Trial Division in December — just prior to Melinda Katz taking over the position as top prosecutor and installing a new executive team.

He is running on a campaign to “Keep Queens Safe,” positioning himself as a crime fighter who will protect Queens residents.

Quinn said he decided to run for Queens Borough President to use the position as a bully pulpit to speak out against the closure of Rikers Island as well as the new state bail laws, which ended pretrial detention and cash bail for most misdemeanors and nonviolent felonies.

“When I decided to leave the DA’s Office in early December, I wanted to have a platform to talk about these two issues and to bring certain things to the attention of the public and politicians,” Quinn said.

Quinn has been an outspoken critic for some time against the closure of the Rikers Island prison facility, which the city plans to replace with four borough-based jails including one in Kew Gardens.

“I’ve been opposed to the closing of Rikers for the longest time — I’ve studied it, I’ve looked at it and I think it’s irresponsible on part of the city,” he said.

He also says that the new state bail laws need to be changed, arguing that the city will see more dangerous criminals on the streets. Advocates for these reforms, however, argue that cash bail criminalizes poverty and keeps poor New Yorkers incarcerated for minor offenses, while the wealthy walk free.

However, as borough president Quinn would have no authority to stop Rikers from closing or repeal state laws. While he acknowledges that fact, he said a Quinn victory would send a message to politicians that Queens is against the closing of Rikers Island and the bail law changes.

He also plans to host public hearings on these issues — an option within a borough president’s purview.

“I would hold legitimate public hearings about the effect that closing Rikers and releasing all these inmates will have on the community,” Quinn said. “I would do everything in my power to stop the city’s plan to spend approximately $10 billion to build [four community-based jails].”

Instead, he wants the city to rebuild the existing Rikers facilities. The city, however, has already begun the land use process to prevent future jails from being built on the island.

Quinn said he considered running for Queens District Attorney, but ultimately decided against it. He said he was concerned with how it would affect the office while he was campaigning, since he was on the executive team.

  • The former Assistant DA grew up in Ravenswood Houses in Long Island City and lived there until he was married. He attended public school in the area and graduated from Columbia University and later Fordham Law School.

  • Quinn joins a crowded field of candidates including Council Members Donovan Richards, Jimmy Van Bramer and Costa Constantinides; former Council Member Elizabeth Crowley; and police reform advocate Anthony Miranda.

He said he stands out from the other candidates because he’s not a politician “looking to move up on the political food chain” and isn’t beholden to any groups.

“I am trying to appeal to responsible people throughout Queens County,” he said. “I’m appealing to people who will look at the issues not passionately, but rationally and look at these things as to what effect they’re actually going to have on the lives of the people of this county.”

email the author: [email protected]

One Comment

Click for Comments 
hart

Quinn is intelligent and balanced. Exactly what we need right now. I only hope he will campaign better than Lasak.

Reply

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Urgent manhunt underway for ‘animal’ who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in Flushing park on Thursday: NYPD

The NYPD announced a $10,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of a Hispanic man who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in a wooded area of Kissena Corridor Park on Thursday afternoon.

More than sixty investigators were at the crime scene late into the night. During a press briefing by NYPD brass on Friday, Chief of Department Jeffrey Maddrey said that the manhunt was expanded city-wide and that the department would spare no expense until the suspect was apprehended.

Op-ed: Protecting Forest Hills Stadium

Jun. 14, 2024 By Thomas Grech

After more than a decade since its rebirth, it is unfathomable to consider Forest Hills without our venerable 101-year-old Forest Hills Stadium. The iconic venue is an asset to our community in so many ways – from creating jobs, to supporting local organizations, to providing invaluable links to our community’s rich history. Amazingly, a small band of unrealists who fail to understand that communities are constructed on the mutual grace and respect of our neighbors, want to shut down Forest Hills Stadium for good.

Op-ed: Congestion pricing would do much more harm than good for New Yorkers

Jun. 11, 2024 By Assemblymember David I. Weprin

Like many residents throughout the five boroughs and across the New York Metro Area, I was pleasantly surprised by Governor Kathy Hochul’s decision to “indefinitely pause” the implementation of Congestion Pricing. Rather than seeing this as a cynical calculation, as some have alleged, I see the Governor’s decision as a deeply pragmatic response to the crescendo of public concerns that I and many others have raised for years. As the countdown to the June 30 implementation date neared, everyday New Yorkers did what we do best: we spoke up for ourselves and said we won’t accept a bad deal! I applaud Governor Hochul for having the courage not just to listen to us but to take a tough stand against this misguided policy.