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Intoxication, Without More Evidence, Does Not Establish Reckless Driving

nassau county criminal defense attorneysIn October of 2012, the Appellate Division of the Third Department, an Appeals Court in the State of New York, found a jury should have been instructed intoxication, without further evidence, did not establish reckless driving. Upon making this ruling, the court set aside the conviction of a defendant named Goldblatt.

Goldblatt had been convicted of aggravated vehicular homicide, vehicular manslaughter in the first degree, manslaughter in the second degree (2 counts), assault in the third degree, reckless endangerment in the second degree, driving while intoxicated (two counts) and reckless driving.

Goldblatt had been driving an SUV in a 40 mile an hour zone at 55 miles per hour. His car went off the road. He hit two people who died from their injuries.

An Appeal

Goldblatt’s lawyers argued on appeal he should not have been convicted on the top count of the indictment which was aggravated vehicular homicide. Their position was this conviction was not supported by sufficient evidence. They claimed the Court at the trial level did not properly instruct the jury regarding the criminal charge of aggravated vehicular homicide. The appeals court reversed the conviction on the aggravated vehicular homicide. The case was sent back for a new trial on this criminal charge. The reason for the Judge’s finding was he agreed with Goldblatt’s lawyers’ argument that the jury had not been properly instructed as to what they must find to convict him of this criminal charge.criminal attorney to assist

Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) Charges Dismissed

nassau county criminal defense attorneysIn a case before Gerri Pickett in the criminal court of Kings County the Judge found the accusatory instrument charging an individual with driving while intoxicated was facially insufficient. Her conclusion was based upon the fact there were no actual allegations supporting the charges essential elements in the accusatory instrument filed by the Kings County District Attorney’s office.

The accusatory instrument alleged that a police officer observed an individual named Padmore standing with a non-party named More. The officer’s statement alleged Padmore stated “he hit and sideswiped another vehicle.” Damage was caused to the other vehicle. Other individuals then drove his car away from the scene of the accident. The officer further stated she observed Padmore to be intoxicated.

Evidence Of A Criminal Offense

The Court’s decision stated in New York Criminal Procedures Law Section 60.50 for an individual to be convicted, in addition to a confession, there had to be evidence the criminal offense was actually committed. The Court found the prosecution did not meet the minimum requirement of facial sufficiency. There is a question as to whether Padmore “operated the vehicle.” Since no one saw Padmore driving the vehicle his own statement was the only proof of the officer’s conclusions. Since there was no corroborating evidence of driving while intoxicated, the Judge dismissed the case.

About The Author – New York Criminal Defense Lawyer

criminal defense on Long IslandThe Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo has been representing men and women charged with misdemeanors and felonies throughout the metropolitan New York area for more than 34 years. Call the law office for a free consultation.

Speed Racing on the Long Island Expressway

Darnel Anderson, 25 years of age, decided to have a race with Darrel Squiers. The race took place on the Long Island Expressway in Nassau County, New York. Both drivers were speeding in excess of 100 mph. Darnel Anderson had two children in the car with him while he was racing his friend. In court documents, he stated “I knew we were going way too fast.”
It was estimated that Darnel was proceeding at approximately 120 miles per hour when he was stopped by the police. He was charged with endangering the welfare of a minor, being involved in a speed contest and numerous additional traffic violations. His racing buddy, Darrel Squiers of Bay Shore, was charged with driving while being intoxicated, being involved in a race on the Long Island Expressway, speeding and a variety of additional vehicle and traffic violations.
Individuals who want to see if they have the fastest car should race their cars on a race track. This can be done under conditions that are safe for everyone involved. In this situation two young children’s lives were in danger and only by the grace of God did they avoid serious injury. These racing buddies now face significant criminal prosecution.

Criminal Lawyer

Our law office represents individuals charged with the following criminal offenses: violent crimes; white collar crimes; sex crimes; weapons possession; driving while intoxicated (DWI); shoplifting; burglary; juvenile defense; assault and battery; drug offenses; domestic violence and all other types of misdemeanors and felonies. If you, a friend or loved one is either being investigated for a crime or charged with a crime, call us for a free consultation, we can help you.

The Prosecution of Pedestrians

road.bmpRecently, in Georgia, a pedestrian was convicted of vehicular homicide related to the death of her four year-old son. The boy was killed in a car accident caused by a hit and run driver.

Raquel Nelson took a long bus ride with her three children. This was in April of 2010. At the end of the bus ride, she tried to cross the road directly in front of the bus stop. She was tired after a long day spent on the bus. Her apartment complex was approximately a third of a mile from the nearest traffic light. This would have caused her to cross five lanes of traffic and then walk a third of a mile back in the opposite direction. She would have to do this while having three young children to take care of. Instead, she crossed a road to a three foot medium in the center of the road. They crossed the road during a break in the traffic. Unfortunately, Nelson’s four year old son AJ followed other adults who were crossing ahead of them.

AJ was struck by a motorist who fled. After he was caught, the motorist admitted he was high on alcohol and pain killers. The driver spent six months in jail and is now serving five additional years probation.

Pedestrian Tried and Sentenced

Nelson was tried and sentenced to a year probation. In addition, she had to pay fines and complete community service. She was also given the option of a new trial, which option she has taken. It is unusual to prosecute a pedestrian. Nelson was convicted of contributing to the death of her son being in the “wrong place”.

Pedestrians will usually take the shortest route crossing the road. If the bus stop is placed far from a pedestrian crossing, most pedestrians will cross where the bus lets them out.

Low income families living in the suburbs are at a disadvantage. Many suburbs are designed for families who have cars. Low income families who are dependent on buses for transportation are forced to risk their lives crossing busy roads when there are no crosswalks near the bus stops.

Nassau and Suffolk Counties Have High Pedestrian Death Rates

Nassau and Suffolk counties on Long Island are the third and fourth most highly ranked counties in the United States on pedestrian fatalities per hundred thousand inhabitants. Approximately a third of all traffic deaths involve pedestrians in Nassau County, whereas only 20% of traffic deaths involve pedestrians in Suffolk County.

Pedestrians Should Not Be Prosecuted

Urban road designers should take into consideration women with young children needing to cross roads in location where buses drop them off.

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Criminal Defense Lawyers

For over 30 years, the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have been defended individuals charged with crimes throughout the Metropolitan New York area. We handle criminal matters in which an individual is charged with drug offenses, domestic violence, assault and battery, driving while intoxicated, juvenile defenses, shoplifting, burglary, weapons possession, sex crimes, white collar crimes, and all other types of misdemeanors and felonies. Call us for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

NYC Child Welfare Workers Charged with Negligent Homicide

In March of 2011, two former New York City child care workers were charged with negligent homicide related to a girl’s death. The girl was four years old at the time of her death. The child care workers had a responsibility to monitor her family’s situation. Damon Adams was a child welfare worker who worked for the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS). He had a responsibility to visit the home of Marchella Pierce. He was supposed to be conducting his visits during the three month period prior to Marchella’s death. Damon Adam’s supervisor was Chereece Bell. She was supposed to provide oversight for Mr. Adams. She has also been charged related to Marchella Pierce’s death. Damon Adams falsely reported that he had been visiting Marchella’s home to check up on her. His failure to follow up and supervise her home situation contributed to her death.

Carlotta Pierce caused Marchella’s Death

Marchella’s mother is named Carlotta Pierce. She had been beating Marchella with household items. She refused to provide Marchella with food and water. She force-fed Marchella antihistamines. Marchella weighed only eighteen pounds at the time of her death. Marchella was a premature baby. She had undeveloped lungs. She had a twin sister who died at birth. Marchella had been in and out of hospitals her entire life. At the time of her release from the hospital in February of 2010, she had a tracheal tube inserted to assist her in breathing.

Administration for Children’s Services had been monitoring the family since November of 2009. Her mother was found to be a drug abuser. Mr. Adams and Chereece Bell are the first two workers working for the Administration for Children Services to be charged with negligent homicide. Anthony Rells, a union representative for the accused child welfare workers, stated, “it is unprecedented and outrageous that workers doing their jobs are being blamed for the deaths of children.”

Mr. Adams faces a potential sentence of seven years in prison and Ms. Bell faces up to four years in prison if they are convicted. The mother, Ms. Brett, faces a term of twenty-five years to life in prison if she is convicted of second degree murder.

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Criminal Attorneys

Our law office represents individuals charged with juvenile defenses, assault and battery, misdemeanors, felonies, domestic violence, drug offenses, driving while intoxicated (DWI), weapons possession, sex crimes, white collar crimes and violent crimes. We also help our clients obtain bail. We’ve been representing individuals charged in criminal matters throughout the Metropolitan New York area for more than 30 years. Call us for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

Modification of Criminal Law

DWI’s

Generally driving while intoxicated convictions (DWI’s) are not subject to being expunged. Instead, in some circumstances these records can be sealed. We can also obtain for our clients waivers of civil disabilities for individuals convicted of DWI’s. This  allows them to obtain commercial licenses in the future or have their commercial drivers license reinstated.

The Expungement Process in New York

To expunge a criminal conviction in the State of New York it is necessary to bring an application to the court that rendered the original decision to convict the defendant. The court has discretion and on a case by case basis decides whether to allow the criminal conviction to be expunged. Generally speaking to have a criminal conviction expunged you must have been convicted as a juvenile, convicted of an allowable drug related offense, or have been arrested in a case and not convicted. Feel free to contact the expungement attorneys at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo for a free consultation regarding the issue of expunging a criminal record.

Contact an Experienced New York DWI Attorney

Based in Lynbrook, New York, The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo represents clients throughout Long Island and New York City, including  Nassau County, Suffolk County and Queens, as well as Westchester County, Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Staten Island.  Call us at 800-344-6431.

Loss of License for Talking on a Cell Phone

cell.jpegIt is against the law to speak on a cell phone while driving a motor vehicle in the state of New York. This past summer, Justice Edmead, sitting in the Supreme Court located in New York County, suspended a driver’s license for thirty-one days when she was found guilty of talking on her cell phone.

The defendant argued that the courts determination was arbitrary and that the sentence was excessive. The court stated otherwise. The defendant had two previous convictions for talking on a cell phone. These convictions took place within the past eighteen months and were still on her driver’s license.

The court claimed that sections 1225-c(2)(a) and section 510(3) of the New York Vehicle and Traffic Laws provided the court with discretion to temporarily suspend the license of a driver for multiple convictions related to the same offense. The court stated in its decision that monetary fines did not stop her from driving while talking on a cell phone. The court further indicated that there was a “reasonable prospect” that without the suspending of her drivers license, she would continue to violate the law. Therefore, the punishment was not disproportionate to the offense, shocking to one’s conscience or unreasonable.

Criminal Defense Lawyers

Our office has extensive experience in representing individuals charged with a variety of crimes, such as drug offenses, domestic violence, misdemeanors, felonies, assault and battery, juvenile offenses, shoplifting, burglary, driving while intoxicated, weapons possession, sex crimes, white collar crimes, violent crimes and traffic tickets. Call us for a free consultation.

Nassau County, New York’s Crime Lab is an Embarassment!

crime1There have been recent disclosures with regard to the numerous problems faced by the Nassau County Police Crime Laboratory. Nassau County faces the potential that numerous individuals were convicted based on erroneous findings of the Nassau County Crime Laboratory. There is the potential for many lawsuits related to the poor quality of the testing work performed by the Nassau County Crime Laboratory.

History of Problems

Crime Laboratories

The police and the district attorneys’ offices rely on crime laboratories to process data related to drugs and other compounds seized by the police. When the crime laboratory’s integrity is challenged, it undermines the credibility of the entire law enforcement system.
Bad lab results can result in improper convictions. Individuals can be convicted of crimes they did not commit. Forensic evidence which includes blood samples, fingerprints and hair analysis is necessary for the investigation and prosecution of criminal cases.

There have been many failures regarding the crime laboratory in Nassau County. Television viewers throughout the United States are familiar with the excellent work that can be accomplished by well-organized, sophisticated forensic investigations of a crime. The CSI television programs are largely responsible for educating the American public regarding these matters.

Presumption of Innocence

Approximately four years ago the Crime Laboratory was placed on probation by the American Society of Crime Laboratory directors. They took this action due to the poor quality of the analysis of drugs taken from criminals by the police. In 2010, the New York State Commission on Forensic Science conducted an inspection of the Nassau County Police laboratory. This resulted on the laboratory being placed on probation a second time. In February of 2011, all testing on narcotics in the laboratory ceased.
Individuals charged with crimes are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Individuals charged with crimes are entitled to due process. This amounts to a fair and impartial legal system. There can be no due process when the police and prosecutors are relying on faulty, inaccurate, erroneous laboratory results caused by a flawed poorly run crime laboratory.

Criminal Defense Lawyers

If you are charged with a crime, the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo can provide you with aggressive legal representation. We experienced in representing individuals charged with drug offenses, domestic violence, assault and battery, juvenile defenses, driving while intoxicated (DWI), weapons possession, sex crimes, white collar crimes, violent crimes and other misdemeanors and felonies. We can assist you and help you save your license if you’re charged with traffic tickets. Feel free to call Elliot S. Schlissel, Esq. at 516-561-6645, 718-350-2802 or 1-800-344-6431. Our phones are monitored 24/7.

Wrongfully Convicted

wrongful-150x150 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.

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Long Island and New York City Criminal Attorneys

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.

Suffolk County Develops Gun Shot System

gunshot-150x150In March of 2010, Suffolk County deployed a gun shot detection system in the two square-mile area of Huntington. This gun shot detection system uses computerized sound sensors to pick up the sounds of gun shots. The system is designed to establish the location of the origin of the gunshot. It is accurate to within approximately eighty feet. The system sends an alert to the police department of the origin of the gun shots.

A similar system has been utilized in Nassau County. The system in Nassau County has helped in providing of medical care for individuals who have been wounded by gun shots. They also have assisted the police in Nassau County in quickly identifying witnesses and making it easier to find the shooters and arrest them. The gun shot detection system in Nassau County, New York, was installed in Roosevelt and Uniondale, Long Island, in July of 2009. Since the installation of the system in Nassau County, there have been nine-hundred shooting incidents. The system in Nassau County is credited with the reduction of shooting incidents in Roosevelt and Uniondale.

Suffolk County decided to install the gun shot detection system after there was a series of shootings near Jack Abrams High School in Huntington Station. The gunfire involved was thought to have emanated from individuals who were members of the Latin Kings gang. The shootings in July of 2010 resulted in a sixteen-year-old being wounded. It forced the closing of this school. It is hoped that the gun shot detection system installed in Suffolk County will reduce the number of violent crimes utilizing firearms.

Criminal Defense

criminal-150x1504 The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo represents individuals charged with a variety of criminal charges.  We  represent individuals charged with sex crimes, weapons possession, white collar crimes, as well as  all types  of violent criminal behavior. In addition, we assist our clients in driving while intoxicated cases (DWI’s),  juvenile crimes and all types of domestic violence allegations. Feel free to call us at 1-800-344- 6431; 516- 561-6645 or 718-350-2802 for a free consultation.

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