Perhaps no recent case better shows how broken the city is, as Mayor Eric Adams noted over the weekend, than that of Michelle McKelley.
Shoplifter extraordinaire McKelley was arrested for what may be her 100th time – yet prosecutors were barred from asking for bail by the state’s disastrous 2019 criminal justice “reforms” and could ask for nothing more than a supervised release.
So the suspect had to be freed, presumably to fly again, get caught and get out once more. She’s already skipped 27 court dates (you read that right!) and has five cases pending.
And, no, she doesn’t steal out of desperation. In her own words, she’s a “professional booster” who fly. . . “to get a new outfit.”
This madness must stop. McKelley isn’t even the only serial shoplifter with such a record. The Post alone quoted Lorenzo McLucas, who actually manages to beat McKelley with 122 arrests, as well as Laron “I steal for a living” Mack and obsessive Duane Reade targeter James Connelly.
And don’t think (despite what crazy progressives claim) that shoplifting is a victimless crime. This endangers the cashiers and low-wage workers who stock the shelves. This creates real fear and desperation among law-abiding citizens. This forces stores to lock in merchandise, raise prices and/or close. It even ends up hurting the scammers themselves.
Meanwhile, chaos and anarchy gnaw at the heart of the city – a guarantee that there will be never be a real recovery.
Even Alvin Bragg, DA of Manhattan, said recently, “We cannot accept a system in which individuals who shoplift again and again go in and out of prison, just to shoplift again.”
He is right. And it’s a chance to prove he really means it, for example, by aggressively finding ways to keep these repeat offenders behind bars.
And by starting to put pressure on his comrades on the left to make real corrections to bail reform.
Otherwise, they are just empty words.
New York Post