A recent report by the U.S. Sentencing Commission indicates that black men serve longer sentences than white men convicted of the same crimes. The commission is an independent and bipartisan agency of the judicial branch of the federal government. It is tasked with issuing sentencing guidelines and monitoring how closely these guidelines are followed by federal judges in New York and across the country.
Criminal case defendants in New York may be more likely to be offered favorable plea deals if they are white. A study of over 30,000 misdemeanors in Wisconsin found that white defendants had more than a 70 percent higher chance of being offered a dismissal, reduction or dropping of charges than black defendants.
A New York dentist pleaded guilty to drug and child pornography charges on Oct. 10, according to federal prosecutors. He was arrested and charged with the crimes two years ago.
Drug charges can result from a number of different incidents. A sting, a routine traffic stop or an investigation may lead you to be charged with possession or another drug-related crime. Typically, to file such charges, law enforcement will perform a search and seizure to collect evidence against you. This practice, though typical, is controversial--and it may be unfairly performed. According to the United States Commission on Civil Rights, police in New York City perform thousands of stop and frisk or search and seizure procedures every year. The legality of such interactions is worth questioning, though, and there are a few things you should know if you have been subject to a search.
If a New York resident tries to conceal or alter evidence, that may constitute tampering. Evidence is roughly defined as anything that may be useful to a criminal investigation such as a document or a physical object. To provide tampering, it is first necessary to show that an individual intended to do so. Accidentally destroying or losing evidence is not necessarily tampering.
When a New York resident is being questioned by police, he or she is free to walk away as a formal arrest has not been made. However, once a police officer prevents a resident from walking away, he or she has been detained and is now under arrest. In order for an arrest to be legal, the officer must have had "probable cause".
When people are arrested in New York, they may need to post bail for their release. The arresting officer determines whether to give them a ticket and release them or to take them into custody.
New York residents may be aware that federal agencies including the National Security Agency have been accused of monitoring the electronic communications of millions of Americans, but they may not know about a new technique being used by law enforcement that places malware on the computers of people who have been suspected of being involved in illegal activity. Civil rights groups are especially concerned about this development because it allows federal agents to monitor the online activates of large numbers of internet users after obtaining a single search warrant.
A New York prosecutor in the high-profile murder trial of an 11-year-old boy has revealed that a witness saw someone who was not the accused entering the boy's home minutes before he was murdered. On trial for the murder is the boyfriend of the boy's mother despite no forensic evidence tying him to the case. The man allegedly seen entering the house was an ex-boyfriend of the mother.
When a New York resident is charged with a crime, there are three areas of negotiation that a defense attorney may potentially use if the prosecution has strong evidence. These areas include charge bargaining, sentence bargaining and fact bargaining.