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Stop And Frisk Searches Rejected By Courts In New York City – Part II

criminal defense attorneysSuppression Hearings

Lawyers can ask for a hearing to determine the propriety of the material seized by police related to searching individuals. At the suppression hearing, the Courts consider the totality of the circumstances involved in the search. They look into the suspiciousness of the behavior of the individual stopped by the police. Examples of things the Courts take into consideration are: did an individual stopped for questioning match the description of someone who had recently committed a crime? Is the area of the stop an area known to the police to be a high crime area? Did the encounter take place during the day when the lighting is good or in the evening when lighting is poor? How did the individual respond to the police presence? Was he or she nervous or agitated? How did he or she answer the police’s questions? Was he or she trying to be deceptive? Did the police see anything led them to believe the individual was carrying a weapon? Was there a bulge in the individual’s waistline? Did the bulge look like the individual had a gun in his or her pants? Did the individual cooperate with the police or try to walk or run away?

Arrested: Guns Or Drugs Seized

When an individual is arrested pursuant to a search, guns, drugs or other contraband are seized by police, it is in an individual’s best interest to retain a criminal defense lawyer. The lawyer can take legal action to challenge the propriety of the search. If the challenge is successful, the items in the search are suppressed (cannot be used to prosecute the individual). The Courts in New York are more willing to throw out the evidence seized from bad searches today than they were in the past.

About The Author

assistance in criminal court mattersElliot S. Schlissel and his associates have been practicing criminal defense law representing individuals charged with misdemeanors and felonies throughout the metropolitan New York area for more than 30 years.

Stop And Frisk Searches Thrown Out By Courts In New York – Part I

criminal defense assistanceIn July of 2012, two New York State Appellate Courts threw out searches related to stop and frisk situations by the police. The searches resulted in the police finding loaded guns. However, the Courts held, just because teenagers are nervous in high crime areas this is not a sufficient basis for the police to stop and frisk them. In each of these cases, the guns were suppressed and could not be admitted into evidence by the prosecutors.

New York City Police Departments Utilization Of Stop And Frisk Tactics

There is a debate going on in New York City. This debate deals with the propriety of stop and frisk techniques used by New York City police officers in high crime areas. This year, Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York City, has taken the position stop and frisk procedures are an effective means of reducing crime and prosecuting criminals. A New York Daily News editorial stated “the courts are going to get people killed. Judges are risking New Yorker’s lives by barring police from taking even the most reasonable actions to prevent crime.”

In the past, courts have deferred to police officers with regard to dangerous street situations. The courts in New York are now taking a more active role in setting standards as to when police officers can intrude into the personal lives of New Yorkers by stopping them and frisking them for weapons.

Defense attorneys today are arguing more often the propriety of searches related to a stop and frisk situations violates the individual’s rights to unreasonable searches under the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution and also violates New York State law.criminal search and seizure

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