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New York Civil Rights And Criminal Law Blog

The signs of racial profiling in New York

Police racial profiling is a controversial topic, with both advocates for and against the practice. There is no universally accepted definition of racial profiling, but it does seem to refer to any action taken by law enforcement that disproportionately affects an individual's race. Sometimes, this can result in an individual being stopped or searched in New York City because they are minorities. In other cases, it can be due to more general policing practices targeting one race over another. Here are a few potential signs: 1. Open hostility or hostile questioning Persons being questioned by...

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Justice delayed is not justice denied

While it won't make up for the many years lost in a New York maximum security prison, the $26 million settlement acknowledges the woeful injustice that was imposed upon two innocent men. When civil rights leader Malcolm X was killed, three men were convicted and sentenced to in 1966. Two of the men denied these charges, while one admitted to his role in the murder. The two defendants maintained their innocence and were, based upon the uncovering of evidence, exonerated of murder charges in 2021. Miscarriages of justice The men's cries of innocence largely fell on deaf ears until a former...

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Police misconduct is a leading cause of wrongful convictions

Police misconduct is a leading cause of wrongful convictions in New York and across the country, according to a 2020 study. The research was conducted by the National Registry of Exonerations, a project that collects data on wrongful convictions to prevent future cases of injustice. Police misconduct For the study, researchers analyzed 2,400 convictions of defendants who were later exonerated over a period of three decades. They found that 35% of cases involved some sort of police misconduct, such as falsifying evidence, witness tampering or violent interrogations. More than half involved...

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Tax avoidance versus tax evasion: Is there a difference?

New York residents may not know that tax avoidance is legal and tax evasion is illegal. Whether you pay taxes as an individual or a business owner, the Internal Revenue Code permits you to avoid paying some taxes by following specific practices. For instance, the tax code allows companies deductions to mitigate the cost of operating a business. You as an individual are also permitted to set up 401(k) plans for employees so that you can delay paying taxes until a future date. Tax avoidance loopholes exist to help lower your taxes Although IRS rules are complex and easily misinterpreted, it is...

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Police killings in New York and why people don’t report them

Police brutality is a problem that has been around for many years. However, it seems to be evolving as time goes on. There have been several high-profile police killings in the past few years, but many more that have not been reported. How do police killings occur? There are a variety of ways police killings can occur, and one of the most common is through the use of excessive force. This can happen when police officers are trying to subdue a suspect, and they end up using more force than necessary. In some cases, police officers may also shoot and kill suspects who are unarmed or pose no...

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What is the psychology behind police brutality?

Police misconduct and brutality is a common problem in New York. Sadly, it’s often directed at people of color, who are not treated the same way as those who are white. Here is how to understand the psychology behind the matter. How police brutality impacts Black people For years, police brutality has shown its ugly face against people of color (POC), especially those who are Black. Two notable cases involved George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, who were both killed by police in 2020. George Floyd was killed after an officer knelt on his neck for over nine minutes. Floyd pleaded and said he...

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Issues disabled people deal with while in contact with the police

Getting pulled over by the police in New York is a stressful time for anyone. Unfortunately, this stressful situation is often worse for disabled individuals. In some cases, law enforcement can misread someone's disability as criminal behavior. Disabled people could be accused of a crime, such as DUI or resisting arrest, that they did not commit. Difficulty hearing law enforcement's commands Many civil rights or police misconduct matters involve commands given to civilians. If someone is deaf, these people won't be able to hear an officer's commands. Similar situations happen when a disabled...

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Who commits different types of Section 8 fraud

Section 8 is the program administered at the federal level by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The program pays all or some of the rent for low-income people. This is a massive program that landlords rely on for income and tenants need for housing. With so much money on the table, the temptation to commit fraud can strike landlords, administrators or tenants. Bribery, false billing and side payments A property owner or administrator for Section 8 housing holds a position of power over people who are often desperate for housing. Strong competition for limited rental units...

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What are hate crimes, and how are they punished?

New York federal law enforcement officials take hate crimes seriously. A person who faces charges needs immediate help with their case as hate crimes are considered federal offenses and carry serious consequences. Understanding hate crimes Hate crimes are motivated by bias against a specific group of people who are considered protected. Crimes perpetrated against anyone for certain characteristics or perceived characteristics such as race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability or national origin are not taken lightly. As such, a person who commits a hate crime can face...

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Your rights while in prison

After being arrested and taken to jail in New York, you might think that you will have the bare minimum of supplies and poor conditions to get you through. However, there are certain rights that you have as an inmate so that you feel safe and so that you are as healthy as possible while awaiting trial or until your release date. Humane conditions One right that inmates have is humane conditions. You also have the right to not be treated as though you're guilty before you have a trial. The facility should have running water and proper plumbing so that you can maintain your hygiene. Your...

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