Lerner & Lerner, P.C.

Former prosecutors with more than 50 years combined experience

Nassau County Criminal Defense Lawyers
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Criminal Defense Archives

Actress Naya Rivera charged with domestic battery

Different jurisdictions throughout the country have different laws that govern the permissible and impermissible conduct that their residents may undertake. However, physical violence against another person is a universally criminalized action and one of the forms it may take in terms of a criminal charge is battery.

Protecting your rights during a criminal legal matter

Often when a crime allegedly occurs much of the narrative surrounds the alleged victim. The victim is the person who purportedly suffered the consequences of another person's alleged criminal actions, and in New York and other American jurisdictions the person who allegedly committed the criminal wrongdoing is the defendant. Defendants are often seen as bad individuals even before the facts of their cases are heard due to the allegations prosecutors bring against them.

What is a felony charge?

If you have been accused of a crime, you may know that there is a difference between misdemeanor and felony charges but may wonder what that difference is. Felony charges are the most serious type of charges an accused individual can face. Felonies may be divided into classes and penalties associated with a felony charge may vary according to the class of felony charged.

Girls in Slender Man sacrifice case to be tried in adult court

Most juvenile crimes in New York are unlike the case of two 13-year-old girls charged in the stabbing attack of another girl. At their hearing, the judge insisted that the character of their alleged crime demanded a response at an adult level. He reasoned that if they were convicted in the juvenile system, then they would be released at age 18.

Understanding the juvenile system

Some families in New York may benefit from finding out more about the existing dynamics that are prevalent in the U.S. juvenile system. Over the last 16 years, U.S. incarceration rates for juveniles have dropped by about 50 percent. The result is that more minors have been sentenced to probation instead. Some public advocates claim that the transition toward doling out more probation and less time in juvenile hall has caused more problems for the youth in America.

New York criminal defense and alternative sentencing

New York judges have some degree of discretion in handing down sentences in certain types of criminal cases. Sentences for major offenses are often prescribed by state or federal law and afford the judge significantly less latitude than in more minor cases. However, in many situations, alternative sentencing is becoming more popular, giving the accused a chance to demonstrate ongoing compliance with the law to the court's satisfaction. There are many reasons an alternative sentence may be a viable option.

Defense of New York theft cases

Every year, many New York residents find themselves charged in cases involving allegations of theft. Many believe they have no recourse other than to plead guilty. There are several possible defenses available to people who have been issued these charges, even when the person charged actually took the property in question.

Defenses to murder in New York

When an individual is charged with murder in the second degree in New York, it does not mean that he or she committed the crime. An attorney may come up with several defenses against the charge at trial or in the hopes of having the charge dismissed prior to a trial. A common defense is to argue that the defendant did not commit the crime that he or she is accused of taking part in.

New York defendants may benefit from Supreme Court ruling

In late June, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered an 8-1 decision in favor of a plaintiff who had three felony convictions. The man, who had been convicted for his third violent felony after being found in possession of a firearm in the mid 1980s, sought to have his jail term reduced. After initially reviewing his case, however, the Supreme Court also decided to challenge the relevant federal law, the Armed Career Criminal Act of 1984.

The insanity plea as a defense

New York residents may wonder how the insanity defense works and how common it is. Although many people who commit violent crimes are mentally ill, mental illness is not the same as insanity from a legal standpoint, and the National Institute of Mental Health found that it is used in only one out of every 100 cases in county court. Furthermore, it is only successful about 25 percent of the time.