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Letter: Putting cost above security of residents

Andrew A. Quattrone, 32, of Lindenhurst, was arrested

Andrew A. Quattrone, 32, of Lindenhurst, was arrested on Monday, Feb. 23, 2015, and charged with attempted use of a child in a sexual performance, endangering the welfare of a child and criminal solicitation, police said. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Chatter about get-out-of-jail-free cards in Nassau County has been brought into laserlike focus with the bizarre case of Andrew Quattrone, who pleaded guilty to criminal solicitation of two 14-year-old girls [“Ill inmate given house arrest,” News, April 21].

It appears that Nassau County officials have put the county’s finances over its public safety.

A respected county court judge recently canceled Quattrone’s $500,000 bail, and released him on his own recognizance, due in part to the high cost of jailing Quattrone, who suffers from acute lymphocytic leukemia and requires 24-hour medical care. He will wear a GPS monitoring bracelet. This is a sad day, especially when the prosecutor called this man a “danger to children” and a “risk to society.”

Public safety is every government’s most important function; there can be no exceptions. Perhaps our state officials should get to work and make it illegal for a judge to factor in the cost of incarceration when making a bail decision.

Jeff Toback, Long Beach

Editor’s note: The writer was a Nassau County legislator from 2000 through 2009.