Criminal Law

We understand the fear and stress associated with being arrested and prosecuted. It is a time often filled with uncertainty and misinformation. The Law Office of Katherine E. Smith will guide you through the process each step of the way and navigate this landscape for you. We are prepared to fight for you all the way through trial, so with us you will not be pushed into taking an unfair plea deal.

In addition to facing criminal penalties, criminal cases also may affect many other areas of your life. For example, your criminal case may affect child custody, housing, employment, probation, and suspension of driver’s license.

Marijuana Possession

In New York State, it is still illegal to possess marijuana in most circumstances. The penalties you face typically depends on how much marijuana you possessed. Penalties range from fines to incarceration, and can also include court-imposed drug addiction treatment. Individuals who possess smaller amounts of marijuana for personal use face lesser penalties than those who possess large amounts of marijuana or who intend to sell it. Those you have a small amount of marijuana may be arrested and put through the system, given a desk appearance ticket, or a summons. In each of these scenarios you must appear in court, unless the criminal case is immediately dismissed.

Disorderly Conduct (PL 240.20)

Disorderly conduct is a violation punishable by up to 15 days in jail. Individuals are often arrested for disporelry conduct when they are not actually committing a crime but they are nevertheless alleged to have intended to create “public inconvenience and alarm.” That means that you can't commit disorderly conduct in a bubble - there must be actual people who were inconvenienced or alarmed. Some conduct that is deemed to be disorderly: blocking the sidewalk or road, cursing, refusing to comply when police order you to leave. Remember, these acts alone are not enough to be disorderly conduct, they acts must also cause public inconvenience and alarm.

"A person is guilty of disorderly conduct when, with intent to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof:

  1. He engages in fighting or in violent, tumultuous or threatening behavior;
  2. He makes unreasonable noise;
  3. In a public place, he uses abusive or obscene language, or makes an obscene gesture;
  4. Without lawful authority, he disturbs any lawful assembly or meeting of persons;
  5. He obstructs vehicular or pedestrian traffic;
  6. He congregates with other persons in a public place and refuses to comply with a lawful order of the police to disperse; OR
  7. He creates a hazardous or physically offensive condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose."
Resisting Arrest (PL 205.30)

Resisting arrest is a class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail. A person is guilty of Resisting Arrest when he "intentionally prevents or attempts to prevent a police officer or peace officer from effecting an authorized arrest of himself or another person." An individual may not be arrested for only resisting arrest, because there must be an underlying, valid, arrest that the person is alleged to have resisted.

When an individual is charged with resisting arrest, police typically claim that an individual flailed their arms, making handcuffing difficult. in fact, other ways of preventing officers from handcuffing you can also be resisting. Running away, kicking your legs, sitting on the ground and refusing to walk can also common resisting arrest allegations.

The Law Office of Katherine E Smith is dedicated to protecting the rights of accident victims. If you've been injured because of someone else's actions we can help you get justice. You have the right to be compensated for injuries caused by others.. While you are recovering you should not have to deal with handling these legal actions on your own; we can help. Please call us for a free consultation.

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