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Mahopac Criminal Defense Law Blog

Drug charges filed against former coach after traffic stop

Drug charges arising from traffic stops always warrant some degree of extra scrutiny by criminal defense counsel. The stop must be for a legitimate traffic violation, and must not be a manufactured, pretextual event. The stop must be conducted for the limited purpose of ticketing the driver for the traffic violation. Turning a limited traffic stop into drug charges in New York or any other state can constitute a violation of Fourth Amendment rights.

A recent arrest on heroin possession and intent to sell charges occurred after Rochester police stopped a pickup truck for no license plate lamps and not signaling when turning. Police allege that the driver told them that he had just snorted heroin. Police searched the vehicle and allegedly found 198 bags of heroin, roughly the equivalent of 45 grams.

Woman charged with drunk driving two times in three hours

It may be reasonably argued that zombies should not be allowed to drive. Over the Halloween season, however, that rule is widely and jovially flouted. Police arrested a woman dressed and made-up as a zombie in upstate New York at 2 a.m. on Oct. 25. She was pulled over and charged with drunk driving after being spotted driving without headlights.

She said she had been attending a Halloween party. The Rochester native was picked up at the Montgomery County police station by a friend and driven home. She then apparently took off the zombie apparatus and proceeded to get in her car and drive again.

Man faces sex offenses involving 3 minors in New York

One man in New York was recently arrested after police said he had sex with three minor girls. The girls were between the ages of 12 and 13, police reported. The man accused of the sex offenses reportedly said that he didn't believe all girls of that age were the same, which is why it was okay for him to engage in sexual activities with them.

The man, said to be 39, allegedly committed the crimes between 2009 and 2010. The man was permitted to go onto a military base because he had befriended the mom of one of the female victims. The two had worked at the store Kohl's together.

Police file drug charges against 3 for allegedly making meth

When police enter someone's residence with a valid arrest warrant, they may make a limited search based on what they see in plain view. The New York State Police arrested two men and a woman on drug charges recently when they went to a residence in Plattsburgh to attempt to find an individual who was the subject of an existing arrest warrant. Police entered the premises and while there allegedly found needles, Sudafed, ammonium nitrate and other precursors to methamphetamine on a table.

They charged the occupants with unlawful meth manufacture, marijuana possession, drug paraphernalia, and several counts of possession of a controlled substance. When illegal contraband is found is plain view that will justify a more extended search. It is not known precisely where the precursor items were other than the allegation by police that they were "on a table."

Drug charges on the increase after more heroin overdoses

There has been an increase in large-quantity heroin busts in New York. These include huge heroin seizures by the task force in New York City and also a number of busts on the upstate highways, all leading to drug charges. Part of the reason for the upswing in arrests is due to the growth recently in the numbers of deaths from heroin overdoses in the Lower Hudson Valley.

According to the DEA, seizures of heroin have almost quadrupled since 1996. Additionally, the federal government has designated Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties as High Intensity Drug Traffic Areas. Despite the continuing efforts to wage the war on drugs, enforcement activities do not appear to curtail to any degree the continuing increase in the use and dissemination of heroin.

Popular teacher arrested for sex offenses and other charges

A clever mobile phone app allows people to send a photo that disappears on the recipient's unit after a few seconds. It's apparently a favored method to send nude or other insensitive pictures without proof that it was done. However, one young woman this past June disrupted that popular image. She took a screen picture to preserve the photo, and in the aftermath of an ensuing investigation, the 44-year-old New York teacher who sent it is now under arrest on 36 criminal charges, including a number of sex offenses.

The man taught physics, math and aerospace at Brooklyn Tech, a high school with some 5,400 students. The students who knew him the best apparently revered him as a special teacher, who spoke on their level, wore jeans, gave them cigarettes, listened to them in confidence. Dozens of students stated their admiration for the teacher and disavowed knowing about any alleged wrongdoing.  He had brought in a flight simulator and taught students how to use it.

New York man charged with drunk driving after fatal accident

It does not matter how safe of a driver a person is or how clear their driving record may be, there are often circumstances that are difficult to compensate for. For example, driving in the dark in the early morning hours could reduce a person's visibility, resulting in an accident. Although the cause of an accident in New York is unclear at this time, the driver has already been charged with drunk driving.

The accident occurred just before 6 a.m. one morning in early October. Police say that the 27-year-old driver of a sedan lost control of his vehicle and slammed into a tree. Some sources suggest there is a stop sign nearby that the driver could have missed.

Police charge criminal offense for alleged hawking of iPhone

Is it illegal to buy Apple cell phones from an authorized Apple retailer and then turn around and sell them for a modest profit? The New York Police Department thinks so. The NYPD arrested a woman who stood in line for days with her husband to buy 12 cell phones at the Fifth Avenue Apple Store. The police arrested her for the criminal offense of operating as an unlicensed vendor, when she allegedly tried to sell one of her phones to an undercover police agent.

 The 51-year-old suspect claims that the undercover cop approached her and asked for a phone, which she refused to sell. She says that the phones were all purchased for gifts or for family members who will reimburse her. The couple apparently paid between $700 and $800 for the phones. Police say they saw her trying to sell a phone for $850 prior to approaching the officer to sell him one.

Suspect charged with sex offenses, second man still sought

Cases of street rape are sometimes difficult for the authorities to prove due to the well-known issues of witness misidentification that may arise in some circumstances. With respect to the recent grisly story of a New York woman being raped by two successive attackers in Brooklyn on Aug. 31, one of the rapists has allegedly been identified and arrested for sex offenses. Authorities arrested the 17-year-old male on charges of sexual assault, robbery, and weapons offenses.

The incident is emotionally-charged due to the horrific attack on the victim, who endured two separate rapes a few minutes apart by attackers who appear to have been working together. They allegedly told her in advance what they were going to do, saying it in similar terminology. The attacks took place at 5 a.m. in Clinton Hill as the 31-year-old female was walking home from a local night spot.

New York narcotics investigator arrested on felony charges

In New York, as well as other states, it's not unusual for public officials, including police officers, to be arrested and convicted of criminal violations. Depending on the severity of the violations, an official or member of the police force may lose his or her position, and in some instances a term of imprisonment may be imposed. When a police officer is arrested on felony charges, it may be particularly challenging for criminal defense counsel to defend the accused.

On Sept. 12, a New York State narcotics investigator was arrested on one or more felony charges after scuffling with an acquaintance over possession of his gun after leaving a bar on the upper West Side. Reports don't indicate why the acquaintance took the defendant's 40-caliber semiautomatic firearm. After he took it, the defendant reportedly tried to take it back, which initiated a struggle. During the struggle, the gun went off, striking two bystanders, a 42-year-old man and a 31-year-old woman.