October 2016 Criminal Law Update
This morning a suspect in a New York City shooting was shot six times in the chest after the suspect was spotted leaving the erotica book launch party on West 22nd Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenue in midtown Manhattan. According to witness accounts, several individuals became involved in an oral argument and seemed to quash it and even hugged. Then one party started shooting. One of the gunman crashed his vehicle with a police vehicle after fleeing and during a police pursuit. The suspect will likely face charges of attempted murder, assault in the first degree, reckless driving and criminal possession of a handgun, among others. Our New York City criminal defense lawyers have defended these types of charges in the past.
In Queens, a woman was arrested after shooting a New York City Detective with a pellet gun. Although the detective was not seriously injured, the woman, who is being arraigned in the Queens Criminal Court in Kew Gardens, will likely face felony charges of Assault in the Second Degree. Whenever a garden variety assault occurs and the victim is a police officer, emergency medical technician or a bus driver or transit worker, the victim’s occupation raises the level of the crime to a felony. Bus drivers were recently added to this law. The underlying rationale is that these public employees are a protected class and it signals the New York legislature’s intent to add more serious punishment when the victim is employed in certain occupations.
Our White Plains criminal defense attorneys know that Westchester is no longer just a quiet suburb and many of the Westchester cities such as Yonkers, White Plains, Mount Vernon, Port Chester are now seeing criminal activity that was thought to only occur in New York City. For example, this weekend in Yonkers, there was a car jacking at a local gas station. The victim was held up at gun point and the robbers took his car. Since a gun was involved, this is a high level felony of robbery in the first and if caught the perpetrators face significant jail time.
Also in Yonkers, a young girl who suffered an accidental gun shot would, which appears to be self inflicted after she and her friend had been playing with a gun in their apartment. Now in New York, even possession of a firearm inside your own home is a felony. Whether this new law will withstand Second Amendment scrutiny remains to be seen. This girl also gave a cover story that she was shot while walking on the street. Unfortunately, these types of events sometimes lead to wrongful arrest when the police go forward based upon falsified information from someone who is trying to keep themselves out of trouble.
Also this week in the Westchester criminal court in White Plains, a man from White Plains was sentenced to 30 years in state prison for stabbing his girlfriend several time this summer. The incident arose out of a domestic violence argument in Greenburgh where the man grabbed a kitchen knife and stabbed his girlfriend.
Heroin is a growing problem in Westchester and in Mount Vernon, twenty five people were arrested for conspiracy as part of a suspected herion distribution ring. The Police seized more than $13 million worth of drugs in what is alleged to be a national heroin smuggling ring., which is part of a Mexican drug cartel.