Republican candidate for governor Lee Zeldin on Thursday urged the man accused of attacking him at a rally in Monroe County last week to seek services meant to aid veterans while also defending Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley's handling of the incident.
Zeldin, meanwhile, continued to press for a special session in Albany to repeal the law that largely ended cash bail requirements for many criminal charges in New York.
David Jakubonis, the man facing federal charges in the case, will continued to remain in custody following a hearing earlier in the day. Doorley's office previously charged Jakubonis with a non-bail eligible offense.
"She made that decision quickly and correctly," Zeldin said during a news conference. "The decision that was made was without her involvement."
Doorley was previously named as a co-chair of Zeldin's campaign, a largely ceremonial role. In the spring, Doorley declined role with the campaign. She reportedly appeared at the rally in question but did not speak at it.
Zeldin, an Army reservist, pointed to the reports of Jakubonis' troubled background and mental health. He suggested keeping Jakubonis in custody would help him access services better.
"I would even say a release of someone on cashless bail quickly isn't just a disservice to law abiding citizens and the criminal justice system... but in so many other cases we're seeing people just aren't getting help," Zeldin said.
Jakubonis should also reach out to the Monroe County veterans' service program, he added.
"These are veterans, they are very passionate about what they do, they want to assist veterans," Zeldin said. "I think it's important for Mr. Jakubonis, his attorney, whoever is speaking with him, to make that outreach."
The issues surrounding crime and public safety, meanwhile, remain a centerpiece of Zeldin's campaign for governor. He embraced New York City Mayor Eric Adams' calls for a special session in Albany to address the bail law while also pledging to work with the mayor if elected.
Adams has rebuked Zeldin's support, however, pointing to the Republican congressman's opposition to gun law changes.