Who We Are | Strategic Plan 2017-2020

At this time of momentous reform for New York City’s criminal justice system, the New York City Criminal Justice Agency’s pretrial services are central to discussions around system change. We deliver pretrial services in the courts, gather pertinent information at the pretrial stage, produce knowledge about the justice system, and support new approaches—all of which play an important role in advancing the City’s ambitious criminal justice reform agenda. We intend to continue leveraging our organizational strengths to ensure the delivery of quality pretrial services and to carry out our mission of preventing unnecessary detention.

Our Mission

The New York City Criminal Justice Agency seeks to reduce unnecessary detention by helping the courts make more informed pretrial release decisions, delivering exceptional pretrial services, and providing critical information to criminal justice policymakers, City officials, and the public.

Our Charge

We work in service to the City of New York and its criminal justice system, and we are dedicated to serving the public good. Our charge involves decreasing detention for defendants who are likely to return to court without bail, encouraging court attendance among defendants who are released pending the disposition of their court case, making it easier for people to pay bail and enhancing perceptions of fairness of the pretrial justice process

Our Work

We advance our mission through the provision of four core functions:

  • We conduct a pre-arraignment interview with defendants, make a release recommendation to the judge and the court assessing the defendant’s likelihood of returning to court, and facilitate bail payment where bail is set at $5,000 or less in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn and the Bronx;
  • We notify released defendants of their upcoming court dates and, when a defendant fails to appear, we contact them and facilitate their return to court;
  • We operate a Supervised Release program in Queens to serve eligible defendants who would otherwise be held in jail; and
  • We aggregate data from multiple agencies and provide research services to criminal justice policy makers, City officials, and the public.

Our Strategic Goals

Over the next three years, CJA will work to achieve the following goals:


CJA will conduct original and salient research that influences and advances criminal justice policy and reform efforts in New York City. Graduate Center

  • We will modernize our data system by improving our data collection, sharing, and analysis capacity.
  • We will strengthen our research capacity and continue to work with the City of New York and other criminal justice stakeholders to ensure that our work influences criminal justice policy and reform efforts.


CJA will deliver exceptional pretrial services contributing to the reduction of unnecessary pretrial detention and improved public safety outcomes in New York City.

  • We will redouble our efforts to deliver exceptional pretrial services by revising our tools and procedures, providing new and enhanced programs for defendants, and providing additional training to our staff.


CJA will enhance existing pretrial services by working with partners to pilot, test, and develop new approaches to strengthen outcomes in New York City.

  • We will pursue partnerships to develop and test new approaches, and open the pretrial interview to additional questions of operational or policy interest from other stakeholders.


CJA will build a robust communications program to increase the agency’s reach to relevant audiences in order to influence justice system practice in New York City.

  • We will proactively tell the story of our work—including the impact of our research findings—to build CJA’s profile.

Recent Reports

Release and Bail

Pretrial Release Without Money: New York City, 1987-2018

Aubrey Fox, Stephen Koppel, Ph.D. (2019)
Court Outcomes

Conviction for Disorderly Conduct

Marian J. Gewirtz, Stephen Koppel, Ph.D. (2019)
Court Outcomes

Disorderly Conduct (§240.20) — New York City’s Catchall Disposition

Marian J. Gewirtz, Stephen Koppel, Ph.D. (2019)
Release and Bail

Understanding the Past, Imagining the Future: 13 Highlights from 30 Years of New York City Criminal Justice Data

Aubrey Fox, Stephen Koppel, Ph.D., Freda F. Solomon, Ph.D. (2018)