January 8th, 2012
Twenty six men were charged for having sex with a thirteen year old girl in Turkey. The Turkish Court made a ruling the thirteen year old girl had “willfully engaged in consensual sexual relations with the twenty six men.” The public in Turkey was outraged. This decision is truly outrageous.
The incident took place in 2002. Twenty six men were accused of having sex on multiple occasions with a thirteen year old girl. The men paid two adult women for the sexual liaisons during the period of seven months. The men were sentenced pursuant to Turkey’s lenient Penal Code regarding sex with underage juveniles. The country’s penal code was thereafter modified in 2005. The older Turkish Penal Code gave reduced sentences regarding sexual liasions between adults and children under the age of fifteen if the child consented. A women’s group spokesman, Pinar Iikkaracan in Turkey stated “in the new Turkish Penal Code there is no question of consent, that is incredibly important to us.” “In terms of girls and boys under fifteen it is very clear any violation of the body for sexual purposes is defined as sexual abuse in the new code. Which means that sexual assault or the violation of the body should have a higher sentence.”
Some of the twenty six men who had sex with the thirteen year old were acquitted, while others received jail sentences of one to four years imprisonment.
In the United States young children are considered not capable of consenting to sexual liasons with adults. Sexual abuse cases are handled as child abuse and neglect proceedings in the Family Courts as well as in the Criminal Courts in the State of New York. These types of cases are usually aggressively enforced by procecutors in New York.
Men and women accused of crimes in the United States are innocent until proven guilty. The prosecution has the obligation of proving beyond a reasonable doubt the individuals charged with offenses have actually committed those offenses. Individuals charged with crimes are entitled to defense counsel. The Law Office of Elliot Schlissel have been defending individuals charged with all types of criminal matters for more than 30 years. We represent individuals charged with sex crimes, white collar crimes, violent crimes, computer crimes, internet crimes, drug offenses, domestic violence, assault and battery, juvenile defenses, driving while intoxicated (DWI), weapons possession and all other misdemeanors and felonies. Call us for a free consultation. Our phones are monitored 24/7. Our phone numbers are 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.
January 7th, 2012
Jacquline M. drove her car with her children in it while she was intoxicated. The Department of Social Services was notified of the situation. They investigated the matter and brought a proceeding in the Family Court claiming that Jacquline’s actions amounted to neglect of her children.
The children’s father also had some problems. He did not take anti-seizure medication because he wanted to drink alcoholic beverages. He was aware his failure to take the anti-seizure medication could cause him to become violent when having a seizure.
Both parent’s actions amounted to child neglect pursuant to the Family Court. Both parents appealed the court’s decision. The Appellate Court found that both parent’s neglect was supported by the evidence.
One of the Appellate Judges strongly dissented from the court’s decision. The Judge stated “there were no allegations of actual harm, thus, could not conclude the agency established either parent placed the children in eminent danger of physical, emotional or mental impairment.” The Judge also stated there was not sufficient evidence to show the mother was intoxicated or that her actions put the children at risk.
The Law Office of Elliot Schlissel have been protecting both mother’s rights and father’s rights in child neglect and child abuse cases. We represent individuals brought up for child abuse by Child Protective Services (CPS) and Administration for Child Services (ACS). We provide aggressive child abuse defense on behalf of our clients in both the Criminal and Family Courts. We represent both fathers and mothers in cases involving Social Services trying to change custody or visitation. We also represent individuals with regard to applications for orders of protection. Should you, a friend or family member have a divorce , Family Court or criminal problem related to actions involving children, feel free to call us. We have developed an expertise in handling these cases. Our phone numbers are 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.
January 5th, 2012
Nassau County Court Judge Peck had made a determination that Assistant District Attorney Michael Bushwack had improperly manipulated a grand jury to change it’s decision in a case after it had voted to drop two charges against a defendant named Ryan Draper, in the case of People vs. Draper, Indictment No.: 894N-11.
Motion to Reargue
The Nassau County District Attorney’s Office brought a motion to reargue the Judge’s decision. Judge Peck reviewed the Motion but stated in the Motion’s Decision he was still convinced that the incident involving the defendant, Ryan Draper was anything other than a simple accident. District Attorney Kathleen Rice is upset with Judge Peck’s decision. She has indicated that she would appeal Judge Peck’s decision. Judge Peck stated he based his decision on the case of People vs. Montanez. A case where the court disapproved an Assistant District Attorney’s intervention in grand jury deliberations. Judge Peck claimed in the Draper case, the prosecutor re-entered the grand jury room and gave additional instructions to the grand jury without seeking judicial permission from the court.
The criminal lawyers at the Law Office of Elliot Schlissel represent individuals investigated or charged with crimes throughout the Metropolitan New York area. For more than 30 years the firm has provided high level criminal defense legal representation for it’s clients. The office has an expertise in a variety of criminal cases, such as drug offenses, domestic violence, shoplifting, burglary, juvenile defenses, driving while intoxicated (DWI), weapons possession, sex crimes, white collar crimes, violent crimes, computer crimes, internet crimes and all other types of felonies and misdemeanors. The law office’s phones are monitored 24/7. Call for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718- 350-2802.
December 23rd, 2011
Mothers and fathers both have the right to have parenting time with their children. All things being equal, and if both parents are fully capable of caring for their children, there is no reason why both parents cannot spend time with their child ,even if the parents have never been married and are not living together.
When there is no court order in place fixing legal custody and parenting time with the child, both parents have equal rights to have access to their children. In New York, when a non-custodial parent is prevented from seeing the children, he has the right to file a petition seeking court ordered visitation with their child.
Once an order from a Court fixes custody and visitation, any attempt by a parent to prevent the court ordered visitation can be a violation of that court order. The noncustodial parent has the right to return to the Family Court and ask a judge to enforce an existing order fixing parenting time and custody.
The worst form of interference with custody and visitation is when a parent abducts the children and relocates without permission from the Court and without consent of the non-custodial parent. Relocating with the children can severely impact on the non-custodial parent’s visitation with their children.
Custodial parents who wish to move far away from the non-custodial parent must petition the family court for an Order which allows them to relocate. The custodial parent who wishes to relocate has the burden to show that relocating with the children is in the children’s best interest, and not just in the interest of the relocating parent.
Mindy McCready Abduct her Child
Recently, the matter of the famous singer Mindy McCready having allegedly abducted her own child from the child’s legal guardian has received extensive news coverage. Though not involving interference with custody by a non-custodial parent, the interference of court ordered custody can still be a criminal offense.
Aggressive Fathers’ Rights Lawyers
The Law Offices of Elliot Schlissel have more than thirty years experience aggressively fighting for the rights of the fathers we represent. We deal with relocation problems, interstate abductions, international relocations and all other cases where the custodial parent seeks to move the child away from the locality where the father lives.
In addition, our law firm represents fathers with regard to domestic violence cases in both the Criminal and Family Courts, orders of protection, allegations of child abuse and child neglect, as well as paternity issues and divorces. We also represent grandparents in grandparents’ rights cases. Call for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.
December 8th, 2011
Are eyewitnesses always accurate in identifying alleged criminals? Recent studies have shown that in more than 75,000 eyewitness identifications, approximately 33% of the identifications were incorrect. Mistaken identifications have put thousands of Americans behind bars. There have been approximately 250 DNA exonerations in recent years. 200 of these convictions resulted from bad eyewitness identifications.
Eyewitnesses, who make statements similar to “the face of that criminal is something I will never forget”, are often wrong. Memories are fragile. Identification by witnesses of strangers is a very inexact science. The reliability of witness identifications are subject to questioning. Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. wrote in a 1991 dissenting opinion regarding a study that convincingly showed “a live human being who takes the stand, points a finger at the defendant and says, that’s the one!” has a major impact on the juries. A study by the American Psychological Association produced research that showed juries tend to give greater weight to eyewitness testimony than other types of evidence.
Supreme Court Reviewing the Issue of Eyewitness Testimony
The United States Supreme Court has recently taken a case involving issues concerning eyewitness testimony. Barry C. Scheck, who is the Director of the Innocence Project at Benjamin N. Cardoza’s School of Law located in New York, New York, stated the courts need a new “legal architecture” which judges can use in authenticated gatekeeping roles. He referred to a study submitted in a New Jersey court by a special master Jeffrey Gaulkin, which showed eyewitness identification should be treated “as a form of trace evidence: a fragment collected at the scene of the crime, like a fingerprint or blood smear, whose integrity and liability need to be monitored and assessed from the point of its recovery to its ultimate presentation at trial. This suggests judges should instruct juries about the limitations involved with eyewitness testimony. Hopefully the Supreme Court will set up a new set of guidelines dealing with the one in three mistakes made by eyewitnesses. Innocent men and women should not be convicted by victims and other witnesses who believe their eyewitness testimony is accurate, when in reality it is wrong in a third of all cases.
If you have been charged with a crime or are under investigation for committing a crime, the Law Office of Elliot Schlissel can help you. We represent individuals charged with a variety of offenses including, but not limited to, white collar crimes, violent crimes, sex crimes, weapons possession, drunk driving (DWI), shoplifting, burglary, juvenile defenses, assault and battery, domestic violence, drug offensesand all types of felonies and misdemeanors. Call us should you have criminal problems. We can help you!
June 20th, 2011
In a recent case before Judge Sciarrino, sitting in the Criminal Court in Queens County, the judge found that the possession of cocaine can amount to endangering the welfare of a child. In the case before Judge Sorentino, the prosecutors filed an accusatory instrument claiming that cocaine was recovered from the defendant’s apartment. At the time the police made the arrest, there was a small child residing with the defendant. The cocaine was unsecured and was just lying around in the apartment. The defendant claimed that the cocaine was on top of the refrigerator and therefore it was beyond the reach of the child. Judge Sciarrino was concerned. If the cocaine was left lying around, the child could assume that this illegal substance was a common household item. He felt this would create and set a terrible example for the child. The court ruled that since there were factual allegations set forth by the prosecutors in their accusatory instrument, they had sufficiently laid out pleadings for endangering the welfare of a child and that the case would not be dismissed.
The law office of Elliot Schlissel represents individuals charged with drug offenses and all types of misdemeanors and felonies. We also litigate orders of protection and issues involving child abuse and child neglect. Feel free to call us for a free consultation.
March 4th, 2011
Mr. Warney was convicted for killing a man and a woman in Rochester, New York. He was sentenced to twenty-five years to life in prison. He had signed a confession admitting that he killed the man and woman. He later took the position that he was tricked into confessing.
The innocence project at Cardoza Law School represents Mr. Warney. In 2008, after serving nine years of his twenty-five to life prison sentence, DNA evidence excluded Mr. Warney as a suspect of the crime.
Mr. Warney Sues New York State For Compensation
Attorney Peter Newfield brought a lawsuit in the Court of Claims in New York asking for compensation for Mr. Warney, claiming he was wrongfully convicted. The New York statute regarding compensation states that the state is exempt from liability in situations where a defendant “by his own conduct” caused or “brought about his own conviction”. Peter Newfield, Esq., claimed that Douglas Warney confessed due to a inherently coercive interrogation. Mr. Warney, due to his low I.Q., was vulnerable to the pressures brought upon him by the police during his interrogation. It is Attorney Newfield’s position that Mr. Warney was coerced into confessing to a crime he didn’t commit.
Lower Court Dismisses Compensation Lawsuit
The initial action for compensation brought by Peter Newfield on Mr. Warney’s request was denied by the Supreme Court. Peter Newfield appealed the conviction and it was again denied by the Appellate Division. Peter Newfield now seeks the Court of Appeals to render a decision allowing his client to sue New York State to collect damages.
Task Force Appointed
A task force has been appointed by Court of Appeals Judge Theodore T. Jones to examine approximately fifty cases where individuals were wrongfully convicted. The task force is due to issue a report showing the role of prosecutors, the courts, police and defendants with regard to these wrongful prosecutions.
At the time of Mr. Warney’s confession, he claims there were eleven pieces of information that provided details concerning the crime by the police. These pieces of information were contained in his confession.
It is now up to the Court of Appeals as to whether Mr. Warney and defendants in similar situations will be able to collect from wrongful convictions based on coerced false confessions.
Individuals charged with crimes are entitled to be represented by counsel. There are two types of crimes in New York, misdemeanors and felonies. Misdemeanors are lesser crimes and felonies are more serious crimes. Legal representation is important for individuals charged with all types of crimes, whether these crimes involve drug offenses, domestic violence, assault and battery, juvenile matters, shoplifting, burglary, driving while intoxicated, weapons possession, sex crimes or white collar crimes.
Every New Yorker charged with crime is presume innocent until proven guilty. It is defense counsels’ job to aggressively represent their clients. This is what we do! We’ve had excellent results in representing our clients for more than thirty years. Should you, a friend, a family member or loved one be charged with a crime or investigated related to a crime, feel free to call us at 1-800-344-6431, 718-350-2802 or 516-561-6645. Our phones are monitored 24/7.
October 18th, 2010
The most common interaction that a law-abiding citizen has with police is being stopped pursuant to a traffic violation. It is important that you do not act in an aggressive or disrespectful manner to the police officer when being stopped. It is especially important that you do not get into an argument with the officer. Do not ask “what are you stopping me for?” and do not try to control the situation. The best way to handle the stop is to be polite, charming and apologetic. The police officer has stopped you for a reason. By claiming that you did not do whatever activity he or she witnessed you doing, you are insulting the officer’s intelligence.
Chris Rock’s Advice
Chris Rock has a video on YouTube in which he gives advice about what to do when you get pulled over for a traffic violation. In the video, Chris Rock recommends that you should “obey the law, stop immediately and stay in your car with your hands on the wheel. If your woman is mad at you, leave her at home. There’s nothing she’d like to see more than you getting your ass kicked”. This is generally good advice!
Honesty is the Best Policy
Do not lie to the police officer when you are stopped. In addition, do not tell the police officer that you don’t know the reason you were pulled over. This will not be helpful. Police officers are concerned with their safety at traffic stops. They do not know if you are an honest citizen or a hardened criminal with a gun under your seat. Stay calm!
When the police officer approaches your car, remain inside the vehicle. Turn the interior dome light on in your car and keep your hands on the steering wheel. It is important that you avoid making quick movements. A police officer may misinterpret a quick movements being an aggressive action to obtain a weapon.
If the police officer asks you for your license and registration, tell the police officer where you are going to put your hands to try to find these items. When you move to obtain your license and registration, do not move quickly. Instead, move slowly in a non-aggressive manner. If you need to open the glove compartment, ask for the police officer’s permission before doing so. He or she may be concerned that there is a weapon in the glove compartment. Be friendly with the police officer. Do not tell him or her that you have important contacts or that you know a lawyer who will straighten this matter out. This would be a mistake. Furthermore, do not, under any circumstances, try to offer the police officer a bribe!
Traffic tickets can be a minor nuisance or they can destroy your livelihood and result in significant hardship by causing you to lose your driver’s license. Should you be issued a summons for traffic violation, an experienced traffic court attorney can help you deal with these problems. Feel free to contact the law office of Elliot Schlissel to assist you in this matter, at 1-800-344-6431, or by email.
October 8th, 2010
In October of 2003, Kenneth Stevens was charged with robbing one Citibank branch and three branches of Chase Manhattan bank in New York. Mr. Stevens’s modus operandi in each of the robberies was to give the teller a note demanding money. The note also stated that he had a bomb with him.
The fourth robbery was his last one. Several blocks from the bank he was stopped and arrested. At the time of arrest he was carrying the $4,700 in cash he had taken from the bank. Unfortunately for Mr. Stevens, he also had a deposit slip that read, “I have a bomb. Give me all the money”. Mr. Stevens was also carrying with him a black plastic bag containing a coffee canister, not a bomb!
Mr. Stevens was represented at the time of his trial by a court appointed attorney named Michael Young. During the course of the trial, Michael Young had a man named Harvey Alter sit at the defense table. Mr. Young referred to Harvey Alter as his “associate”. Mr. Alter was present during the entire course of the trial. When there were conferences at the bench, he also approached the bench with Mr. Young. The court was under the impression that Mr. Alter was an attorney.
In September of 2004, the jury found Mr. Stevens guilty. Judge John F. Keenan of the Southern District of New York sentenced Mr. Stevens to 216 months in jail.
Harvey Alter Was Not An Attorney
After the trial, it was discovered that Harvey Alter was not an attorney. He was instead a convicted felon and had a business relationship with Michael A. Young, Esq.
Mr. Stevens brought an appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the second department. He claimed ineffective assistance of counsel. He further claimed that he was convicted on the felony charge of bank robbery, labeled a career offender and sentenced to eight years in prison due to the fact that his attorney’s associate was a felon.
The court found that even though Mr. Stevens attorney sat next to an individual that was a felon, it did not impact the effectiveness of his counsel. The court also pointed out that the jury was never aware that Mr. Alter was not an attorney and therefore it had no impact on the jury deliberations. Unfortunately for Mr. Stevens, he is still stuck in jail!