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Bronx DA offers to dismiss all charges against Pedro Hernandez, the teen who became the face of bail reform

NEW YORK — He became the face of bail reform after he chose to remain in jail rather than take a plea deal for an attempted murder he didn’t commit, but Pedro Hernandez had other charges pending against him in an underlying case. On Tuesday, those charges were all adjourned.

Pedro Hernandez on June 12, 2017.

Hernandez, 18, had still faced a burglary and reckless driving charge after his attempted murder charge was dismissed last year in a high-profile case.

In that case, Hernandez’s $250,000 bond was reduced to $105,000, after the Robert F. Kennedy Foundation, a bail reform advocacy group, got involved. It learned of Hernandez’s situation in part due to PIX11 News coverage.

Attorneys associated with the foundation also ultimately got the attempted murder and other charges dismissed.

Still, a robbery charge and a reckless driving charge remained on Hernandez’s record from another case. He faced a total of 11 charges in the last two years. Late Tuesday, a judge adjourned the final two charges.

“We believe in dispositions outside the criminal justice system whenever possible and when they provide consideration of the rights of the victim, fairness to the defendant and do not compromise public safety,” District Attorney Darcel Clark said.

Hernandez has been accepted by a college and, if he enrolls and completes a semester, the court will fully dismiss both cases, Clark said. They “believe this disposition will give Mr. Hernandez the opportunity to put his life on the right path to succeed.”

Manuel Gomez, a private investigator who gathered the evidence that led to Hernandez’s cases being closed, celebrated the decision.

“I said all along from the beginning that he is an innocent person and I’d bet my life on it,” Gomez said. “Now this family has justice and he can go about his life.”