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Criminal Defense Case Victories

New York City Attorneys Successfully Defending Clients in the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan

Domestic Violence

People v. Sullivan

Client was arrested for allegedly calling and threatening his ex-girlfriend over the phone. After obtaining and reviewing the telephone records of the parties involved, Mr. Watford was able to prove that the client never called the complainant as alleged. Mr. Watford was able to convince the District Attorney’s Office to dismiss all charges. In a rare turn of events, the ex-girlfriend was arrested and charged with several felony offenses after she admitted to the Assistant District Attorney assigned to the case that the fabricated the allegations.

People v. Segure

Charged in Criminal Court with violating Family Order of Protection by calling the complainant solely for the purpose of obtaining work uniforms. Mr. Watford obtained and produced various court records demonstrating that the client was granted access to the residence by the Family Court judge for the purpose of retrieving his property on three (3) occasions prior to his arrest. Upon presenting the documents to the District Attorneys Office they agreed to dismiss the charges.

People v. Weathers

Client found not guilty after trial of domestic assault. Mr. Watford was able to prove that the client was justified using force to prevent his ex-wife from forcibly entering his house without permission or authority from the client.

People v. M. Jackson

Client charged with assaulting his brother in law who was upset over client’s prior domestic violence incidents with complainant’s sister. The arresting officers and DA office refused to believe that client was defending himself after being ambushed by the complainant. Mr. Watford visited the crime scene with the client and obtained video surveillance recordings which proved that unbeknownst to the client, the complainant was lying in wait and initiated the fight. After submitting the video to the prosecutor all charges were dismissed.

Weapons Possession

People v. Torricella

U.S. Park Police officer charged with weapons possession and menacing for allegedly displaying and threatening to harm his problematic teenage son. Found not guilty after trial.

People v. T. Williams

Client, an Air Force Veteran who resided in Virginia, was charged with illegally possessing five (5) firearms in NYC and was believed to be a firearms trafficker from Virginia. The District Attorney’s Office was originally seeking ten (10) years prison. Mr. Watford was able to demonstrate that all of the firearms were legally purchased by the client while he was an active member of the service. Mr. Watford filed a motion to dismiss all weapons charges which required mandatory prison time in the interest of justice due to the unique circumstances related to the client transporting the weapons with him during his visit to NYC. The judge granted the motion and dismissed all felony weapons charges.

People v. Dunkley

Drugs and weapons charges dismissed against client after it was demonstrated that the arresting officers illegally entered the home of the client and conducted a search of the residence which resulted in the recovery of the items. The officers were seeking to arrest the client’s boyfriend on a traffic violation warrant. Prior to the case being presented to the Grand Jury, Mr. Watford was able to convince the prosecutor that the outstanding warrant needed to be a felony warrant in order to permit the police to forcibly enter the residence of a third party and that there were no exigent circumstances that justified the entry or search of the premises.

People v. P. Byas

Felony gun possession charges dismissed on speedy trial grounds where during prosecution of the case, it was discovered that the arresting detective’s credibility was questionable. The gun was recovered in a car with 4 occupants and never processed for fingerprints or DNA evidence. During the prosecution, it was also discovered that the arresting detective had several lawsuits and allegations filed against him for false arrest and fabricating evidence. Consequently, the DA never produced the arresting detective to testify at the pre-trial suppression hearing which ultimately violated the client’s right to a speedy trial.

People v. G. Williams

A NYC Correction Officer was charged with misdemeanor weapons possession for allegedly shooting a BB which shattered the window of the complainant’s car. At the suppression hearing, Mr. Watford was able to demonstrate that the arresting officer’s search of the client’s car was illegal. The police admitted during the hearing that they searched the client’s vehicle minutes prior to the complainant arriving at the scene and identifying him as the perpetrator. The judge suppressed the BB gun and the all charges were dismissed.

People v. C. Williams

Client was charged with felony gun possession and facing a potential mandatory prison sentence of 16 years to life. At the suppression hearing, Mr. Watford was able to demonstrate that the arresting officers illegally seized the client without reasonable suspicion when the officer grabbed the client who refused to allow the police to enter the house after he answered the door. The officers subsequently kicked in the door and illegally pursued the client who allegedly threw an unidentifiable object which the police said was a firearm. After the hearing, the judge reviewed the memorandum of law submitted by Mr. Watford and granted the suppression motion.

Assaults

People v. Paterson

Client was charged with Attempted Gang Assault in the First Degree. Four months later, during an adjournment period, the District Attorney attempted to reduce the charges off calendar to misdemeanor assault and other related charges. At the appropriate time, we successfully filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds that the client’s speedy trial rights were violated when the District Attorney’s office failed to comply with Criminal Procedure Law when they did not follow the proper procedure for reducing a felony to a misdemeanor off calendar.

Murder and Homicide

E.R. (Suffolk County)

DWI Murder case under a theory of “Depraved Indifference”, after the defendant killed 3 teenagers in a car crash, while heading home on New Years Day. Defendant acquitted of Murder, thereby being spared a life sentence.

G.C. (Queens)

Defendant acquitted of Attempted Murder and all related charges, stemming from a bar room brawl, in which the victim was stabbed within an inch of his life.

D.M. (Brooklyn)

Defendant acquitted of Attempted Murder and all related charges, after shooting another man multiple times in Self Defense.

D.B. (Bronx)

Defendant was acquitted of Murder, and Manslaughter conviction reversed after the Trial Judge refused to permit jury to consider Self Defense.

People v. Brown

Mr. Brown was charged with Murder in connection with the shooting death of his daughter’s boyfriend, after they had a dispute in the lobby of his residence. Mr. Brown fired a single shot in Self-Defense after his daughter’s boyfriend angrily approached him while swinging his fists at Mr. Brown and grabbing for his gun. Despite these facts, the Judge would not permit Mr. Jackson to argue that Mr. Brown acted in Self-Defense. The Jury found Mr. Brown Not Guilty of Murder, but still convicted him of Manslaughter. In speaking with the Jury, Mr. Jackson realized they were troubled that the Judge would not allow them to consider that Mr. Brown was defending himself. On appeal, the Appellate Court reversed Mr. Brown’s conviction, ruling that the Jury should have been permitted to consider that Mr. Brown was defending himself.

People v. D. Moore

Client was charged with Attempted Murder in a case involving a love triangle. A woman with whom he was romantically involved, was also in an intimate relationship with someone else. After leaving a Diner with a her, the other man followed them in his truck. It escalated into a high speed chase in which the other man forced them off the road, and aggressively jumped out of his truck to confront Mr. Moore. Believing himself to be in serious danger, Mr. Moore shot the man in the face and the chest. Despite that, he was arrested and prosecuted. Mr. Jackson was able to successfully argue that Mr. Moore acted in Self Defense. The first jury ended in a mistrial, with jurors split over whether Mr. Moore acted legally in shooting his attacker. The second time around, Mr. Jackson was able to obtain a Not Guilty Verdict, and the case was dismissed.

Sex Crimes

People v. Cosme
People v. E. Drummond

Client charged with forcible rape by an ex-girlfriend. Mr. Watford was hired after the client pleads guilty to a felony and before he was sentenced to probation. Mr. Watford successfully argued to have plea vacated due to the fact that client was not advised that he would be deported based upon his guilty plea. Thereafter, Mr. Watford filed a motion to dismiss all charges for violating the client’s right to a speedy trial which was granted after the complainant repeatedly failed to appear for trial.

DWI

People v. J.J.

Client was charged with killing an elderly woman in an early morning car crash-- while driving drunk. She was killed upon impact after being struck by his truck. When the police responded, they noticed that my client had the odor of alcohol on his breath, slurred speech, and watery and blood shot eyes. He was also observed to be unsteady on his feet after being asked to exit his vehicle. Accordingly, he was arrested and prosecuted for Vehicular Manslaughter. Mr. Jackson was able to successfully argue that his client was not the cause of the accident. As such, the focus was placed upon the weather, the road conditions, the dangerous nature of the area where the accident occurred, and the manner in which the woman was driving her car. Additionally, Mr. Jackson was able to provide the jury with alternative explanations as to his client’s alleged visual signs of purported impairment and intoxication. At that hour of the morning, it would not be unusual for a person's eyes to be red and watery, especially if he didn’t get a good night sleep. Further, a person can, and may in fact, have an odor of alcohol on their breath -- without actually being drunk. And as to his lack of balance, the impact of the crash would certainly lead to disorientation. Following a multi- week trial, the jury returned a Not Guilty verdict, completing clearing the client of Vehicular Manslaughter.

People v. LS

Defendant was charged With Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs in Suffolk County, after crashing into a fence on his way home from a party. When the police arrived, the Defendant was fast asleep in his car. Police smelled marijuana and asked him if he was smoking— which the Defendant admitted. He then gave a urine sample, which revealed that he had five (5) different drugs in his system. The Prosecutor refused to reduce the charges, arguing that he could have killed someone or himself. They pressed the Judge to hold him accountable, and not reward him for being lucky enough to not to have killed himself nor anyone else. Nonetheless, since rehabilitation is a central tenet in the law, Mr. Jackson was able to persuade the Prosecutor to dismiss these serious charges. He did so by arguing that his client should be permitted to enter drug treatment to cure his addiction, perform community service, and check back with the Court to ensure he met his obligations.

People v. MB

Client was charged with Aggravated DWI on two separate occasions which occurred 4 months apart in the same upstate county but in two different towns. In both cases, the client’s Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) was .32 - which is four times the legal limit of .08. Mr. Watford drafted and submitted a mitigation package to both courts which provided a detailed history regarding the client’s stable background, his continued voluntary participation in alcohol treatment and documented mental health issues which caused his alcohol dependency. The District Attorney’s Office was seeking jail time. Mr. Watford was able to obtain a package plea bargain deal where he convinced the judges in both cases to sentence the client to a non-jail disposition (probation) which permitted the client to continue receiving outpatient alcohol and mental health treatment.

People v. Carroll

Client arrested for DWI. At the pre-trial hearing, Mr. Watford demonstrated that client drove to precinct in order to have the police assist him in removing his intoxicated female companion from his car who refused several requests by client to exit. Mr. Watford played the videotape from the precinct which demonstrated that the client was not intoxicated and that the arresting officers violated his rights by refusing to honor the client’s request to call his attorney and that client did not refuse to take the breathalyzer. At the conclusion of the hearing, Mr. Watford was able to convince the judge to persuade the District Attorney’s Office to dismiss the case via ACD despite the client having a case of unopened 40 ounce bottles of beer in his trunk.

People v. Montalvo

NYC Correction Officer was charged with DWI and allegedly menaced the complainant with his firearm. Mr. Watford was able to get the misdemeanor criminal complaint dismissed for a violation of the client’s right to a speedy trial under NYS law. When the District Attorney tried to proceed forward with the remaining traffic infraction of Driving While Ability Impaired by Alcohol, Mr. Watford pointed out to the judge that the remaining traffic infraction was defective under the NYS Criminal Crimnal Procedure Law. The judge dismissed the remaining charge.

People v. Jeffries

Acquitted by a Manhattan Supreme Court jury of DWI despite blowing a .18 on the breathalyzer and police testimony regarding alleged intoxication.

People v. Santana

Acquitted by a Bronx Criminal Court jury of DWI despite being involved in a collision and having the police and eye witness attest to his alleged intoxication.

Technical Dismissals

People v. Paterson

Client charged with Attempted Gang Assault in the First Degree. Four months later, during an adjournment period, the District Attorney attempted to reduce the charges off calendar to misdemeanor assault and other related charges. At the appropriate time, Mr. Watford successfully filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds that the client’s speedy trial rights were violated when the District Attorney’s office failed to comply with Criminal Procedure Law when they did not follow the proper procedure for reducing a felony to a misdemeanor off calendar.

Trial Victories

People v. Weathers

Client found not guilty after trial of domestic assault. Mr. Watford was able to prove that the client was justified using force to prevent his ex-wife from forcibly entering his house without permission or authority from the client.

People v. Torricella

U.S. Park Police officer charged with weapons possession and menacing for allegedly displaying and threatening to harm his problematic teenage son. Found not guilty after trial.

People v. China

Acquitted by a Queens Supreme Court jury of Attempted Murder despite the victim’s DNA recovered on his knife, and numerous witnesses asserting he was responsible.

People v. Stephens

Acquitted by the Court of Stalking and Aggravated Harassment despite a detailed email trail to the alleged victim.

People v. Sanata

Trial Order of Dismissal where client accused of filing a false report with the police.

People v. Thomas

Client was accused of excessive force in the beating of an inmate. Mr. Jackson demonstrated that client was justified in the Use of Force he applied by showing that the inmate was not complying with procedure when told to face the wall to be searched after coming back from Rec. Time. Mr. Jackson played the videotape from the jail which demonstrated that the inmate was not complying with procedure of facing forward while being searched and had turned his head and proceeded to spit on client. Client, according to his training applied the Use of Force necessary to make the inmate comply. At the conclusion of the trial, client was found not guilty and was able to return to work.

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