The New York Penal Law is vast, and encompasses hundreds of charges that are classified as Class “A” or Class “B” misdemeanors. Just because they are misdemeanors and not felonies does not mean that these charges should be taken any less serious. Indeed, both Class “A” and Class “B” misdemeanors can lead to city jail time, fines, orders of protection, and permanent criminal records. Some of the more frequently charged Class “A” misdemeanors include assault, criminal contempt, petit larceny, fare evasion, criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree, and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. In the alternative, some of the more common Class “B” misdemeanors include menacing and some forms of harassment.
Pursuant to bail-reform laws enacted during January of 2020, some Class “A” and Class “B” misdemeanors allow for a police officer or detective to issue a defendant a desk-appearance ticket, which provides a future criminal court date. Instead of being arrested on the spot and arraigned by a judge, a desk-appearance ticket, or DAT, requires that you return to criminal court on a later date for your first appearance.
Importantly, just because you were given a DAT does not mean that the charge is any less severe. The potential penalties and orders of protection are the same whether or not you are arrested instantly or are instructed to come back to criminal court on a future date. Part of the bail-reform statute even allows for a DAT when charged with certain Class “E” felonies, which encompass serious charges carrying upstate prison time or lengthy probation if convicted.
Being charged with any misdemeanor or violation in New York can having lasting impact. For individuals who work in finance, it can mean losing a Series-7, while doctors may have their medical license revoked or suspended upon a conviction. Hence, these charges must be met with an elevated, relentless defense to ensure that your record remains clear and that you avoid any amount of jail time. To get help and find an experienced Criminal Defense Attorney in NYC The Law Offices of Jason Goldman can help.
If you are accused of a misdemeanor or violation, hire a former prosecutor and prominent criminal defense attorney who has dealt with these offenses on both sides of the courtroom. The steps your defense attorney takes, by way of investigation and creative advocacy, will increase your chances of successfully walking away from these accusations and shape the rest of your life.
The sooner you put your case in the hands of an experienced criminal defense lawyer, the more opportunity you will have to work toward a favorable outcome.