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New York Criminal Defense Law Blog

Understanding federal sentencing guidelines before going forward

Not everyone faces charges filed by the state of New York. Some individuals here in the state find themselves facing criminal charges filed by the federal government, which means going through a similar but different process. As part of preparing a defense, it is important to gain an understanding of federal sentencing guidelines.

Many factors go into making a sentencing recommendation. The way the guidelines are written, two people charged with the same federal crime could end up with widely different sentences. This means prosecutors have wide discretion, which makes negotiations advantageous and problematic at the same time. Without a competent and experienced understanding of the guidelines and knowledge of how they work, you could end up spending more time or any time at all in a federal penitentiary.

Criminal defense: New York teens faces charges

A teenager accused of taking part in a joyride is facing charges after his friend was killed in the resulting accident. New York authorities have arrested a 15-year-old boy, who allegedly took part in the theft of an SUV that later crashed, killing a 13-year-old boy who had been at the wheel. The 15-year-old has not been publicly identified due to his age, but it has also not been disclosed whether he will be tried as an adult. There is no word as to whether he or his family has retained criminal defense representation at this time. 

According to the partial report, it is claimed that the two boys stole an SUV before driving it through Harlem at a high rate of speed. The 13-year-old was apparently driving when the vehicle ran a red light in front of a police officer. The boys reportedly attempted to flee the scene by bailing out of the moving SUV, but the vehicle was already in the midst of turning. It struck three parked cars before flipping onto the 13-year-old, pinning him. 

Did a New York police officer accuse you of drunk driving?

If you see flashing red and blue lights in your rearview mirror as you drive home after a night out with friends, you might immediately feel nervous. Even if you believe you haven't done anything wrong, just knowing a New York police officer is attempting a traffic stop can make your stress level soar.

It's helpful if you know your rights and can make informed decisions as the events unfold and the police officer approaches your driver side window. If you lack knowledge, you might wind up saying or doing something that makes matters worse down the line. An officer that suspects you of drunk driving might ask you to take a preliminary breath test, in which case, there are things you should know ahead of time.

Criminal defense: New York man faces charges

A Cheektowaga man is facing multiple charges after allegedly shooting his girlfriend, according to local sources. New York police arrested the man, who was arraigned on March 6 and now faces several charges pertaining to the incident. The man has retained criminal defense representation, and the attorney was set to meet with his client for the first time on the date of the arraignment. 

According to police in Cheektowaga, the man and his girlfriend were eating dinner at Texas De Brazil on March 5 when the incident occurred. Allegedly, the man reached into his pocket for his wallet and accidentally discharged his firearm. His girlfriend was shot in the leg. 

Criminal defense: Woman accused of murder

An altercation turned deadly on Feb. 11 when one woman was apparently beaten to the point of death. The New York Police Department has arrested one of the three individuals implicated in the incident, which took place in the Bronx. The arrested woman has retained criminal defense counsel, and a not guilty plea was entered at her Feb. 28 arraignment. 

According to the information provided in the police report, it appears the 44-year-old female victim was using an ATM in a vestibule of a bank when the accused woman apparently banged on the glass, asking to be let in. Her lawyer has told authorities the woman had forgotten her bank card and wanted to retrieve it. The victim refused and left the bank, going across the street to a second bank where the alleged assault took place. 

Criminal defense: Former police officer accused of drug running

A former police officer with the New York City Police Department has been charged, along with four other individuals, in a large drug sting, according to local sources. The former New York officer is reportedly still at large as of this report, but his four alleged accomplices have all been arrested. All of the accused individuals, including the former officer, will be represented by criminal defense counsel at their hearings and throughout the trial process. 

According to the indictment, the five accused individuals are believed to have conspired over the course of three years to distribute 500 grams of methamphetamine in the vicinity of Westchester County and New York City. They are also believed to have conspired to distribute GBL, or gamma-butyrolactone, a common date-rape drug. The seriousness of the drug problem in this area has encouraged prosecutors to seek stringent penalties for all the involved individuals. 

Criminal defense: 30 people arrested in ICE protests

Protesters blocking traffic in midtown were reportedly arrested by police on Feb. 16, according to local sources. New York police were required to remove protesters who were there to protest U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. None of these individuals have been identified publicly at this time, so it is unknown whether any of them have retained criminal defense counsel. 

Limited information about the nature of the protest was available as of this report, but police confirmed that approximately 30 people were arrested during the protest. Police described the event, saying protesters locked arms to block traffic at the intersection of Seventh Avenue and 42nd Street, with some sitting in the crosswalk. This caused significant backlogs of traffic in the area, prompting police action. 

Facing DUI charges in New York can ruin your college career

If you attend one of the many colleges or universities in New York, you're likely no stranger to stress. It can be quite challenging to keep up with the rigors of academics. If you also happen to be an athlete, you have training and competition to worry about as well. Pulling all-nighters to study for finals is a typical component of life on a college campus -- so is drinking.

You might be among many college students who enjoy having a few drinks with friends in your free time. If you're age 21 or older and you don't live on a dry campus, there isn't necessarily a problem with that. It's a fact, however, than many students have ruined their college careers because of alcohol-related issues, such as facing DUI charges while they're in school.

Criminal defense: New York woman faces charges

A woman in Plattsburgh has been accused of abandoning her child in a store as well as stealing almost $1,200 in merchandise from a Walmart, according to local sources. The New York State Police say the woman was arrested twice in the same day for the two alleged infractions. It is not yet known whether she has retained criminal defense counsel, and no court date has been announced at this time. 

The details of the incidents are limited. However, it has been confirmed that the 32-year-old woman from Esopus was arrested around 7 p.m. at a Walmart in Plattsburgh after allegedly being caught with approximately $1,149 in merchandise. She was charged with grand larceny and apparently released on her own recognizance.

Criminal defense: New York woman charged with hate crime

A woman accused of a bizarre crime could be facing criminal consequences, according to local sources. An upstate New York woman stands accused of hurling pork products at a synagogue, an action authorities are calling a hate crime. She has been released on her own recognizance and was scheduled to appear in court on Feb. 3, likely alongside a criminal defense attorney. 

According to police reports, on Jan. 19 the 47-year-old woman is believed to have thrown a package of pork chops on the front steps of the Congregation Anshe Emeth Jewish Temple in Greenport. This caused the package to rupture, spilling fluids onto the temple steps. This constitutes an insult in the Jewish faith, which eschews pork products. 

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