New York Civil Rights And Criminal Defense Lawyers

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Black man smoking marijuana violently arrested in Brooklyn

New York police are important members of our society. Every day they put their lives on the line to help protect and help the citizens of New York. Unfortunately, while carrying out their task of keeping city residents safe, they sometimes overstep their bounds. If a police officer breaks the law, they should be held accountable for their actions. A man who was at a park in Brooklyn was arrested after a police officer noticed him allegedly smoking marijuana. The arrest involved an undercover officer who pulled a taser on the unarmed black man in a violent manner. The incident was recorded by...

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Were your rights violated? Don’t let it happen again, fight back

There are many civil rights that people have including: The right to vote The right to a public education The right to have an attorney represent you The right to use governmental services The right to an unbiased and fair trial And many others Of all the civil rights, the most common civil rights cases arise from situations that include: Housing discrimination Government discrimination Employment discrimination Of these, one that you may be most concerned about is discrimination through the government, or, put more casually, being discriminated against by the police. False arrests, false...

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Felony Assault Acquittal

On February 25, 2020, Sivin, Miller & Roche LLP won a full acquittal on a felony assault case in Kings County Supreme Court. Our client was charged with slashing the complainant in the face with a knife during a fight. We were successful in persuading the jury that the complainant was the initial aggressor and that our client was justified in defending herself.  The Jury found her not guilty of all charges.

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Police Misconduct Threatens Individuals’ Civil Rights

Encounters with law enforcement officials can be intimidating, no matter the circumstances. When New Yorkers are faced with explaining themselves to badged and often armed officers, they may feel threatened or even scared of what may happen if the officers’ suspicions are raised. When police encounters turn aggressive, individuals’ civil rights may be threatened. That is because in New York and states throughout the nation police brutality and misconduct can run unchecked by local and state governments. The bad actions of some law enforcement officials can jeopardize freedoms and even the...

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Filing a dram shop liability claim

If someone gets behind the wheel of a car after drinking and ends up causing an accident, many people wonder if the bar that served the driver alcohol is partially responsible for the injuries and/or deaths resulting from that accident. Under New York dram shop laws, New York businesses are not allowed to serve alcohol to people who are visibly intoxicated, under the age of 21, or habitual drunkards. By violating state liquor laws, bars and restaurants can open themselves up to liability in cases involving drunk drivers. Dram shop laws allow drunk driving accident victims and their families...

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Unlawful arrests and lack of probable cause

Under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, a police officer can only arrest someone if the officer has a valid arrest warrant, or the officer has probable cause to do so. The purpose of the Fourth Amendment is to protect citizens from unlawful search and seizure by police. Arresting someone without probable cause is a violation of their civil rights and the arresting officer and police force may be civilly liable for damages. What is probable cause? Generally, a police officer has probable cause to arrest you if he or she has a reasonable belief that you were involved in a crime....

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Body camera concerns point out flaws with NYPD

Police misconduct is a horrifying thing to think about. Whether it's an officer harassing someone or brutalizing someone they're arresting for no good reason, the reality is that they aren't doing their job and are violating the law. One thing that has helped in these cases is the use of police body cameras. One problem, though, is how slowly the New York Police Department, or NYPD, has been turning over the tapes. Since the body camera program began, the Civilian Complaint Review Board has asked for body camera footage over 4,000 times. This footage could help substantiate claims made about...

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Class-action law suit challenges ICE no-release policy

Imagine an immigrant family in which the father has been arrested and incarcerated by federal immigration authorities for alleged immigration violations. Prior to the beginning of the Trump administration, most immigrants detained by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office were released if they posed no threat to the community. For example, from 2013 to 2017, 47% of detainees who were deemed to be low risk were released automatically. Following June 2017, the percentage of detainees released without a trial dropped to 3%. That change has caught the attention of the New York Civil...

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Man spends 25 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit

Can you imagine being accused of a crime, convicted and then serving the longest possible sentence? It would be a miserable situation, and you'd probably fight to prove that you were innocent the entire time. That's what happened in this case. Freedom is in the air for a man from the Bronx who spent 25 years of his life behind bars for a crime that he did not commit. According to the news from Jan. 28, the 60-year-old man cried out of joy as he left the courtroom after having a rape conviction vacated. The man had been accused of a rape that took place in 1984 in East Harlem. If he pleaded...

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