On behalf of Law Office Of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC posted in violent crimes on Friday, May 24, 2019.

New York is being hailed as a progressive leader in justice system reform with the recent signing of the Domestic Violence Survivors Justice Act. According to MEAWW, the law considers the abuse history of someone who is accused of committing a crime against their abuser. It allows judges to consider the history of abuse to provide more lenient sentences to the accused.

There are still strict sentencing guidelines and many judges may use the history to offer alternative to incarceration programs or shorter sentences. In the past, any crime committed was treated separately from who it was committed against. This means that a domestic violence victim who hurt or killed their abuser would still be charged with a harsh crime even though they were being abused. Judges could not formerly use the history of abuse when determining sentences.

Supporters of the act feel it will lead to more humane sentencing. It requires that the crime be committed during the period of abuse and the domestic violence must have been a large part of the defense. The judge will also consider whether former sentencing guidelines were extremely harsh for the situation when determining new sentences.

The law does not apply to those convicted of sex offenses, aggravated murder, terrorism offenses or murder in the first degree. Those who have already been sentenced but want to request re-sentencing must be facing an original sentence longer than eight years and they must be currently incarcerated because of the offense. As research suggests that domestic violence is a large factor in many crimes and that some would not have committed a crime if it were not for the abuse, supporters hope that the state can become an example for other states to provide more appropriate sentencing guidelines.

By : First Page Attorney | May 24, 2019 | Violent Crimes


On behalf of Law Office Of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC posted in violent crimes on Monday, May 13, 2019.

The perception amongst many in New York is that violent crimes are limited to those that involve actual physical confrontations between individuals. In reality, a violent crime can be one where no action was taken, yet great fear and intimidation was inferred. You are probably familiar with the age-old saying of “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” In the eyes of the law, that statement is most definitely untrue.

Per Section 490.20 of New York’s Penal Code, you can be prosecuted for making terroristic threats. These are threats intended to cause the reasonable fear or expectation that terrorist actions are imminent. In the context of this law, terrorist actions are defined as:

Intimidating or coercing a civilian population
Influencing the policy of a unit of government by intimidation or coercion
Affecting the action of a unit of government by murder, assassination or kidnapping
As you can see, these actions differ from the more commonly city offenses of inciting panic by yelling fire in a theater. Terroristic threats must be detailed in their description and targeted at a very specific audience. Such a charge could leave you facing a Class D felony.

The common defense to accusations of making threats is that you never intended to follow up on them. However, in the case of terroristic threats, you can be found guilty of making them even if you show that you never did intend on carrying them out. Instead, challenging such allegations will likely come down to you showing that any statement you are accused of making was not targeted at a particular individual or group and this was taken out of context.

By : First Page Attorney | May 13, 2019 | Violent Crimes

Clients Testimonials

Contact Us

Please fill in the form below to get in touch with us

I am attorney Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., and my firm is located in downtown Brooklyn near the Borough Hall and Jay Street stops. The Law Office Of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC, offers free initial consultations to individuals living within all five New York City boroughs. You can reach me at any hour of the day or night, regardless of the complexity of your issue.

To schedule your initial consultation or to learn more about my firm, call 718-596-1829 or complete the lawyer contact form below.