Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Ithaca Cortland Lawyer What Does Any Legal Sentence Really Mean?


Legal sentences are sentences (punishments) allowed by law. Remember that in New York State Judges are given wide latitude to punish people. New York is an old common law state with many laws stretching back hundreds of years. We have over 6,000 little town, village, and city courts. They dote the landscape over hill and dale.

Under our statutes even for a speeding ticket (a non-criminal) violation under NYS VTL (vehicle and traffic law) section 1180 you can be sentenced to up to 15 days in the county jail. In fact, for the majority of our traffic offenses, all non-criminal you can get up to 15 days in jail:

VTL 1160 (a) Improper Right Turn  up to 15 days in jail
VTL 1160 ( c) Improper U- Turn     up to 15 days in jail
VTL 1128 ( c) Failure to Use Designated Lane   up to 15 day in jail

and it goes on and on,,,

How often do I see people being sent to jail for speeding? 

Rarely, I have seen a few motorcycle cases with speeds in excess of 100 mph that got a weekend but generally NO! Traffic infractions rarely land people in jail but the power invested and entrusted to the bench is huge.

ANY Legal Sentence has Lots of Weight

But the main point is that ANY LEGAL SENTENCE on a New York misdemeanor (a crime) means up to a year in county jail, or up to three years of probation supervision (monitoring), and fines, and surcharges, and with some Judges community service hours, and with some Judges drug/alcohol assessments and programs, and the list goes on and on.

KEY TAKE AWAY: 

What is allowed (legally) in terms of punishments under the laws of the state of New York is huge!

Always consult with an attorney about any criminal or non-criminal charges you have pending to discuss your options and/or defenses.

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