A defendant appealed from three judgments of the Criminal Court. Each judgment convicted the offender involved, upon his plea of guilty, of petit larceny. On appeal, the court ordered that the judgments of conviction are reversed, on the law, the guilty pleas entered are vacated, and the matters are remitted to the Criminal Court for further proceedings on each of the accusatory instruments.
The People charged the alleged offender with petit larceny and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. He pleaded guilty to criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree in satisfaction of the accusatory instrument, and was permitted to participate in an outpatient drug treatment program in lieu of incarceration, with the proviso that if he was rearrested or otherwise failed to complete the program, he would be sentenced to a year’s incarceration. Some time later, based on a new incident, the People charged him in with petit larceny and criminal possession of stolen property in the fifth degree. He appeared in Criminal Court and pleaded guilty to petit larceny, whereupon he was restored to the outpatient treatment program, again as an alternative to a year’s incarceration, to run concurrently with the prior disposition. On a later date, he was arrested again and charged in a single accusatory instrument with petit larceny, criminal possession of stolen property in the fifth degree, and false personation. He appeared in Criminal Court and, although his prior guilty pleas had not been vacated, pleaded guilty to three counts of petit larceny, in satisfaction of the three accusatory instruments, and was sentenced to three concurrent terms of six months’ incarceration. He has served his sentences.
On appeal, he contends that his state statutory and federal constitutional protections against double jeopardy were violated when, without his prior guilty pleas having been vacated, he pleaded guilty a second time to offenses charged in the accusatory instruments in satisfaction of these accusatory instruments, and to a third charge of petit larceny in satisfaction of the accusatory instrument, as part of a comprehensive plea and sentencing disposition.
A New York Criminal Lawyer said that although his state statutory double jeopardy rights were forfeited by his guilty pleas, his constitutional claim survives. Absent vacatur of the prior pleas, the guilty pleas entered, purportedly in satisfaction of the first two accusatory instruments, were barred and the judgments of conviction entered thereon must be reversed and those two guilty pleas vacated. Further, because the guilty plea in satisfaction of the offenses charged in the third accusatory instrument were integral parts of a comprehensive plea and sentencing agreement involving the dispositions of all purportedly outstanding charges, it cannot be severed therefrom. Consequently, the judgment of conviction entered thereon must similarly be reversed and that guilty plea vacated.
A New York City Criminal Lawyer said that he argues that, as he has served his sentences on the three judgments and the offenses charged are relatively minor, no penological purpose would be served by reinstating the proceedings to their pre-April 22, 2010 statuses. He therefore urges that the three accusatory instruments be dismissed as a matter of discretion in the interest of justice. However, because the proceedings in this case involve numerous charges arising from three arrests, at least two of which occurred during the period when he was to lead a law-abiding life and undergo drug rehabilitation and, thereby, qualify for the dismissal of certain of the charges, the court decline his request that we dismiss the accusatory instruments. Consequently, we restore the matters to their statuses prior to April 22, 2010 for further proceedings on each of the accusatory instruments.
A Manhattan Criminal Lawyer said that accordingly, the judgments of conviction are reversed, the guilty pleas of April 22, 2010 are vacated, and the matters are remitted to the Criminal Court for further proceedings on the three accusatory instruments compelled the jury to resort to sheer speculation. His remaining contentions have been examined and found to be without merit.
Stephen Bilkis & Associates handle varying cases. They have a legal team who specializes in different fields of law. In cases involving grand larceny, felony shoplifting, or those concerning petit larceny defenses, the firm has its Kings County Petit Larceny Lawyers or its New York Criminal Defense Attorneys who will aid you with the right remedy to take.