Mistakes happen. Most of the time when they do, we learn, we live and we move on. Sometimes, though, these mistakes can leave others harmed, whether physically, emotionally or financially. If severe enough, one of these incidences could lead to criminal charges. However, in an attempt to protect individuals from the long reach of the law’s arms, the legislature has been extremely careful when drafting statutory language. Therefore, when accused of a crime, the first thing an accused individual should do is look to that language to see if they may be able to use it to their advantage.
One Rochester man may need to do this now after being taken into custody on first-degree assault and second-degree weapons charges. The arrest stems from a shooting that left the man’s two-year-old son needing immediate medical attention. Although the authorities have indicated that no other adults or children were in the home at the time of the incident, it is still unclear what exactly happened.
What is clear, though, is that, in order to obtain a conviction on the first-degree assault charge, the prosecution will have to show that the accused individual intended to shoot the child or that he possessed depraved indifference at the time of the incident. Proving intent can be quite difficult for prosecutors, as it is hard to come by evidence that illustrates one’s mental status at the time of the alleged crime. This leaves open the possibility for a criminal defendant to challenge the allegations by either negotiating a plea deal or seeking an acquittal by taking the matter to trial.
Regardless of which route this defendant takes, one thing is clear: most individuals in this type of situation need to know the law and how to use it to their advantage. This is why many accused people turn to an experienced criminal defense attorney to help them with crafting legal arguments that support their side of the story.
James L. Riotto is an accomplished criminal defense attorney serving clients in New York. With an extensive background in law enforcement and criminal prosecution, his approach to each case is unique and informed by years of experience with the New York criminal justice system. As a graduate from Albany Law School and before going on to start his own practice, James worked at the Albany County District Attorney's Office, where he helped prosecute many DWI offenses. His inside knowledge of the tactics used to gain convictions provides him with a particular advantage when defending against DUI and other criminal charges.
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