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New City Criminal Defense Law Blog

Negotiating a plea deal may lead to a less serious sentence

Despite what you may have seen on television, a majority of criminal cases are resolved without going to trial. Generally, prosecutors and defense attorneys will work together to negotiate a deal based on the circumstances surrounding the alleged crime and the amount of evidence the prosecutor has against the defendant.

When both parties agree to work out a deal, the prosecutor will likely go in to the plea negotiation process with the goal of getting a guilty plea of some kind. This often means that they will agree to let the defendant to plead guilty to a less serious charge.

When will a motorist face problem driver restrictions?

Many people in New York will go to occasions this summer where alcohol is served. After all, summer is a popular time for block parties, weddings and one cannot forget the Fourth of July and Labor Day holidays. Unfortunately, after attending such celebrations, some people may be charged and convicted of driving under the influence.

When a person has been convicted on drunk driving charges multiple times, the penalties they face are stiff. For example, if a person has multiple DUIs on their records, and their license to drive has subsequently been revoked for a reason that is not even related alcohol, upon relicensing they still may face problem driver restrictions. Such restrictions could have a major impact on a person's life.

Seeking a pardon in New York for a crime committed as a teen

Sometimes, a teenager in New York will commit a crime. They may have been influenced to do so through peer pressure or they may not be mature enough to understand the long-term consequences they would face if caught. No matter what the reason, if convicted the teen's criminal history may be accessible to the public. This could be very detrimental to a teenager, especially once they reach adulthood. Their criminal history may be available to potential employers, landlords and others. Because of this, the teen's criminal history could affect them not just in the here-and-now, but for their entire future.

Fortunately, teens who committed a crime at ages 16 or 17 may be able to seek a pardon as adults. If granted, the New York State Office of Court Administrations will impose restrictions on the public's ability to view the person's criminal history. However, certain elements must be met in order for a pardon to be recommended.

Former USPS worker charged with grand larceny and identity theft

Stealing someone else's mail for any reason is generally considered a crime. Stealing someone else's mail and using their private information to commit fraud or embezzlement is especially serious and can result in severe penalties, which may include time in federal prison and hefty fines. In many cases involving mail theft, the person accused of the crime is someone who handles mail every day for a living. For example, one former United States postal worker was recently charged with grand larceny and three counts of identity theft. The worker is currently in jail with bail set at $35,000 and will appear in court in the next few weeks.

The postal worker, who worked for the USPS for about a year leading up to her arrest, allegedly stole mail from drop boxes in a New York neighborhood. According to police, there have been many mail theft incidents in the area, and surveillance images apparently have captured someone putting their arm into a mailbox.

What should you know if you charged with underage drunk driving?

Although the legal drinking age in New York is 21, people under 21 will sometimes decide to drink alcohol. The situation can be made worse if the person gets behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking. They are subject to the Zero Tolerance Law.

Those under 21 who drive with a BAC of .02 percent to .07 percent will be subject to zero tolerance. When the traffic stop is made, the officer will likely ask the driver to take a breathalyzer test to gauge the BAC. Some might be under the impression that it is within their rights to refuse to take the test. This is not the case and will result in a license revocation of one year. For those whose BAC registers between .02 percent and .07 percent, there will be a violation of zero tolerance and an administrative hearing. If it is higher than .05 percent, but less than .08 percent, it will be a driving while ability is impaired by alcohol violation and will go to criminal court. If it is .08 percent or more, it is a DWI and will go to criminal court.

What factors determine my DUI penalties?

New York drivers who are convicted on DWI charges will likely lose their license for a period of time and could possibly face jail time. However, the severity of the consequences they face will usually depend on certain factors.

One factor that will impact your DWI penalties is whether your blood alcohol concentration was less than the legal limit. Many people think that they will automatically go free if their blood alcohol concentration is less than .08. However, this is not always the case. First, your age and the type of license you have may result in different limits. For example, the legal limit for drivers under the age of 21 is only .02. A driver under 21 who drives with a .02 to .07 BAC automatically violates the Zero Tolerance law and will have to pay a civil penalty of $125 and have their license suspended for six months, plus a $100 fee to terminate the suspension. Drivers operating a commercial vehicle also have stricter rules than other adult drivers, and only have a legal limit of .04. It is also important to note that even traditional adult drivers with a BAC level under .08 can be charged with a DWAI, or Driving While Ability Impaired by Alcohol, if they have a BAC of .05 to .07, along with other signs of impairment.

Man faces felony assault charges after allegedly fighting cops

It is an unfortunate reality that some family disagreements in New City escalate to the point that it is considered a domestic assault. Being arrested on these charges can cause major upheaval in a person's life not just personally, but professionally as well. There can be fines, jail time, restraining orders and many other issues in the aftermath. What can make these situations worse is when law enforcement is called and the person who is alleged to have committed domestic violence is accused of refusing to comply with orders from law enforcement. It might even rise to assault charges against police, opening a whole different level of charges. Those who find themselves confronted with these problems must remember their right to have a legal defense.

According to a recent report, a domestic dispute between a man and his wife ended up with the man charged with felony assault in the second degree, felony criminal mischief and other charges. Police were called to investigate an alleged domestic dispute. The man reportedly refused to cooperate with the police. As they investigated they found that he had done damage to the home, including broken furniture, holes in the walls from punches he had allegedly thrown and general disarray. He was about to be placed under arrest when he reportedly refused to allow them to put him in handcuffs. He subsequently took hold of his wife and tried to pull her away.

What are the best ways to defend against robbery charges?

Robbery charges often stem from allegations that a person threatened the use of immediate physical force while attempting to deprive someone of their property or while committing larceny. Forcibly taking property from another person in New York can result in serious consequences. Generally in New York a conviction for third-degree robbery may result in two to seven years in jail, while a first-degree robbery conviction may result in 10 to 25 years in prison. The court may also fine you up to $5,000 or double the amount you gained from the robbery.

In order to convict you of robbery rather than larceny, a prosecutor will have to establish the additional element of force. You and your defense attorney can come up with a criminal defense strategy that proves that no force was used during the incident, which, if successful, could allow you to avoid the harshest penalties. For example, you may be able to prove that the gun you had in your possession was unloaded or not able to be discharged at the time of the alleged robbery. If the prosecution is unable to prove that you used or attempted to use force, your charge may be dropped down to larceny.

Mayor pushes to stop arrests for smoking marijuana in public

While medical marijuana is legal in New York, smoking marijuana is still illegal. According to current New York law, you could be arrested if police catch you smoking marijuana in public and you will likely have to be fingerprinted and required to appear in court. On the other hand, when someone is in possession of a small amount of marijuana, they are issued a summons instead and are not generally arrested or fingerprinted, unless they do not show identification. However, Mayor Bill de Blasio is making an effort to stop public marijuana smoking arrests. The mayor has told New York City police to stop arresting those smoking marijuana in public and instead issue them a summons.

In 2017, police in Manhattan made 5,500 drug arrests relating to public pot smoking or possession of small amounts of marijuana. Many believe that the laws that led to these arrests disproportionately impact minorities.

Man faces felony drunk driving charges related to Leandra's Law

Facing drunk driving charges in New City and throughout New York can happen in a variety of ways and lead to many different allegations and penalties if there is a conviction. For example, people might not realize that they can be confronted with DUI allegations even if the vehicle is not moving and a law enforcement officer finds a person who is under the influence behind the wheel. This can be compounded if the person has children in the vehicle. Those who are dealing with an arrest in such a case must remember the importance of having legal help.

According to a recent report, a man who fell asleep in his vehicle while in the drive-thru at a fast food establishment was arrested on drunk driving charges. These allegations were raised to the level of felony charges because he is also accused of violating Leandra's Law, as he had two children in the automobile. According to the investigation, the man was in a Jeep Cherokee at the time.

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