Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop blasted a loophole in bail reform legislation that classifies illegal gun possession as a non-violent crime, in the wake of Tuesday’s murder of DaJour Riley, in his sixth and final state of the City speech in Ward B last night.
As with his other speeches throughout the city, the Mayor highlighted the city’s broad and specific neighborhoods’ policy measures to improve public safety, job growth and business expansion. But the mayor deplored how easy it is for young people to acquire guns.
“This story is a sad reminder of the access young people have to guns in our city,” said Fulop.
Incredibly, he noted that the Jersey City PD had just arrested Riley last month for illegal gun possession and that’s when he placed blame on Trenton.
“In this situation, this young man who died should be alive and likely should be incarcerated. The JCPD had arrested this individual just last month with an illegal gun,” Fulop said in his speech.
“However, due to the new bail reform from Trenton, possession of illegal guns has been classified as a non-violent crime. I’m taking this opportunity to call on Trenton to change this loophole that allowed this to happen.
He then recognized in attendance State Senator Sandra Cunningham (D-31) for also advocating to close the loophole in the bail reform legislation.
While public safety was an important issue to address in his final State of the City speech in light of Tuesday’s shooting, the Mayor informed Ward B residents of the initiatives that his administration is pursing to advance some of his policy agendas.
For example, he credited the City Council for recently voting on a rezoning proposal to create a restaurant row along West Side Avenue, and he highlighted how the New Jersey City University’s expansion will transform the neighborhood and also how the creation of the West Bergen-East Lincoln Park Historic District will improve property values.