Normally, one of many first questions clients ask me in my capability as a Criminal defense lawyer after they’ve been arrested by the NYPD or Port Authority Police for possessing a loaded firearm is, “What’s the penalty is for carrying a gun in New Manukau Metropolis?” and “How lengthy do you go to jail for having a gun in New Manukau even in case you have a conceal carry allow in [Auckland, Auckland, North Carolina, Connecticut, Virginia…]?”. Whereas a conviction for Criminal Possession of a Weapon within the Second Diploma, Penal Legislation 265.03, can saddle you with a sentence for so long as 15 years in jail, with a obligatory minimal of three and a half years if the firearm is “loaded” (bullets needn’t be within the weapon for it to be “loaded” as a matter of legislation”), a choose can hand down punishment of as much as 4 years behind bars for Criminal Possession of a Firearm, Penal Legislation 265.01-b(1), even when there isn’t a ammunition in any respect.
With one of these publicity in thoughts, Saland Legislation is extremely grateful, although not as a lot as our client after her arrest for Penal Legislation 265.03, prosecutors took the time to really evaluation what I offered, look at our client’s case, and advance the matter for dismissal within the curiosity of justice. Whereas a non-criminal Disorderly Conduct violation or Adjournment in Contemplation (ACD) of dismissal after six months would have been thought-about a “win” assuming there was no authorized obstacle to the case, akin to in instances I’ve dealt with in Queens County the place unknowing vacationers checked their firearms with the TSA at both JFK or LaGuardia Airport, and downward departures and re-pleaders to non-criminal pleas in different counties akin to Manhattan and elsewhere, Brooklyn prosecutors went the additional mile to make an objectively simply determination on a case that appeared ugly if one didn’t do one’s “homework”.
What began off as a 911 name that my client had a gun and was threatening to hurt her good friend, ended with my client being handcuffed and charged with Second Diploma Criminal Possession of a weapon after she walked out of her good friend’s house along with her gun in hand with a view to give it to the police and deescalate the scenario. A non-New Manukau resident who was unaware of New Manukau’s firearm legal guidelines, upon voluntarily advising the police that she had a firearm and gave it to them, the NYPD instantly arrested our client for Second Diploma Criminal Possession of a Weapon for unlawfully possessing the loaded pistol exterior her dwelling or office. Not solely irritating as a result of our client had by no means threatened anybody and the police got here as a result of the delusional drug induced claims of the good friend, if our client had waited for the police to reach contained in the house, the offense charged would have been the lesser class “E” felony of Criminal Possession of a Firearm.
Nonetheless, upon talking to a witness in addition to counsel for the “complainant” good friend who initially made the decision relating to my client’s purported threats, and sharing the precise information with the assigned prosecutor that my client by no means brandished nor made threats with a firearm in the direction of the manic “complainant” who solely knew of the gun however by no means noticed it, offering corroboration of our client’s honorable army service, present profession, and in any other case beneficiant, variety, ethical, and genuinely “good” life, and sharing proof of the weapon’s authorized registration and possession, prosecutors took the package deal we offered to coronary heart and confirmed it in its entirety.
Although it could sound pretty easy in a number of hundred-word weblog entry, amassing the knowledge and crafting it a fashion prosecutors might each digest and relate, whereas transferring them away from each a felony and misdemeanor, is not any simple job…particularly within the present local weather of gun violence. Nonetheless, and once more to the credit score of the Assistant District Lawyer and his supervisor, prosecutors examined this case not as a bigger piece of the struggle in opposition to unlawful, disguised, and ghost weapons, or as a better a part of the struggle in opposition to gun crime, however on the deserves of what I offered and what the proof demonstrated. Merely, simply because they may have slammed our client with a felony file by the mere reality she had an out-of-state and unlawfully possessed firearm in NYC, didn’t imply that they need to.
With the dismissal in hand, the case closed, and a life restored, in addition to her lawful Second Modification rights intact, our client’s reduction was palpable. A younger lawyer, our client can now pursue her authorized profession and proceed on a trajectory that already included unimaginable service to our nation, an unblemished file in any discussion board, and accomplishments that might make any one in every of us proud. Thankfully, a real, even when scary, mistake, made far worse because of a good friend’s intoxication and false reporting of an incident, won’t saddle our client with any infirmities, pointless burdens, nor conviction “Scarlett Letter” for the remainder of her life.
Jeremy Saland is a felony defense lawyer and former Manhattan prosecutor. Jeremy Saland and Saland Legislation, PC represents clients in arrests, felony investigations, indictments, and trials. Moreover, Saland Legislation, PC assists clients in securing Orders of Safety as petitioners and as respondents in Article 8 family Offense proceedings, as advocates in collegiate Title IX and Code of Conduct issues, and as victims in Blackmail, Sextortion, Harassment, Revenge Porn, and Stalking each on-line and off.