In a recent case before a New York court, the defendant argued that his defense attorney was ineffective in representing him at the trial level. Originally, he was found guilty of both criminal contempt and committing an aggravated family offense, but the defendant thought he was entitled to receive an entirely new trial because of his attorney’s mistake. After reviewing the defendant’s argument, the higher court dismissed the aggravated family offense count but ultimately upheld the conviction for criminal contempt.
Facts of the Case
According to the opinion, the defendant went into his former girlfriend’s apartment one day in 2016 when there was an active stay-away order that legally prohibited him from being in her presence. While he was there, the defendant put his hands around his ex-girlfriend’s neck and stole her ID cards. The ex-girlfriend called the police, and the officers arrested the defendant immediately.
He was subsequently charged with criminal contempt because he had violated the stay-away order that was in effect. He was also charged with committing a family offense, which means that he committed a violent act against a relative or person with whom he had an “intimate relationship.” The defendant was found guilty, and he promptly appealed.