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NYC Menacing Defense Lawyers

March 16, 2021

New York Penal Code 120.13: Menacing in the first degree

Menacing is one of the most common crimes that involve doing an action that places an immediate person in fear of death or physical injury. For you to be charged with the menacing crime, you don’t have to inflict any physical injury. Under the New York Penal Code, there are four menacing offenses. Menacing in the first, second, third, and fourth degrees are most common. Moreover, you can menace a peace officer or a police officer in the line of duty. Under the New York penal code 120:13, you can be prosecuted for the first-degree menacing offense if you have ever committed a menacing offense in the second degree. You can also face this charge if you committed this crime within the past one decade. If you have ever convicted for committing a menacing crime against a police officer or a peace officer, you can face this charge in a New York criminal court.

Example
The defendant held a big knife across her woman’s neck and threatened to kill her. During the action, the man did not touch the woman’s body with that knife. In this case, he did not also cause any physical injury to her body. Since the knife can be classified as a dangerous instrument or deadly weapon, the man can be charged with a first-degree menacing crime in a criminal court if he has been convicted of a second-degree menacing crime. Otherwise, the man could be accused of a second-degree menacing charge.

Related offenses
1. Menacing a peace officer or a police officer: New York Penal Code 120:18
2. Third-degree menacing: New York Penal Code 120:15
3. Second-degree menacing: New York Penal Code120:14

Defenses
To be convicted of the first-degree menacing offense, the prosecutor must be ready to prove to the court that you threated another person with a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument. As a matter of fact, not every knife is always a dangerous instrument or a deadly weapon. For instance, a common butter knife or loaf knife cannot be considered as a dangerous weapon.

Sentence
First degree menacing is one of the most serious offenses in the criminal court. It is classified under the class E felony. A four-year term in prison is one of the possible sentences you are likely to face if you are found guilty. You can also face a five-year probation jail term with the inclusion of a $5,00 fine to compensate the victim.

New York Penal Code 120.13: Menacing in the first degree
A person is said to be guilty of committing a first-degree menacing offense when he or she commits the menacing crime in the second degree. During the second-degree menacing crime commitment, the person must have been convicted. You are also likely to be charged with the first-degree menacing crime if you have been previously accused of menacing against the peace officer or a police officer within the past one decade.

The nyc criminal attorneys Law Firm
The consequences of the conviction for the first-degree menacing crime is so severe. While most people think that this is a small crime, they will realize how wrong they are after facing a prison sentence. This crime will give you a straight ticket to land in a county correction facility accompanied by a heavy fine. In the end, you will face the world with a criminal record. However, an experienced defense against these charges can result in the charge being reduced, dropped, or acquisition. The staff at NYC Criminal Attorneys Law Firm has many years of professional experience in successfully defending their clients in the New York Criminal Courts. For a free consultation, please call the law firm and talk to an experienced legal representative.

New York Penal Code 120.14: Menacing in the second degree

Menacing is one of the most common crimes that involve doing something that puts another person in danger of physical injury. You do not have to inflict an injury on a person to be charged with menacing. This statute provides that you only threaten another person with physical injury if you display a weapon as your action, then you will be charged with second-degree menacing as defined under the New York Penal Code: 120: 14. For you to face prosecution under this statute, the prosecutor must show the following:
1. You committed the third-degree menacing crime in violation of a protection order, or
2. You engaged in a cause of conduct or followed someone repeatedly to place them in fear of death or physical injury, or
3. You intentionally placed someone in a reasonable fear of death or injury by displaying a dangerous instrument or deadly weapon.

Example
Two women come shouting over issues concerning drugs. One woman came out claiming that the other woman stole a bunch of marijuana from her. In that incidence, the woman pulled out a gun and pointed it out to her. While she threatens to use the weapon, she does not use it. Instead, she pulls back the gun and walks away to her car. The woman who pulled out her gun could face a second-degree menacing charge because she displayed a deadly instrument or weapon to put the other in reasonable fear of death or physical injury.

Related offenses
1. First-degree criminal contempt: New York penal code 215:51
2. Menacing a peace officer or a police officer: New York Penal Code 120:18
3. Third-degree menacing: New York Penal Code 120:15
4. First degree menacing: New York Penal Code 120:13

Defenses
For you to defend a third-degree menacing charge, you must prove to the judge that you did not display a dangerous weapon or deadly instrument. Not every knife or gun is necessary a hazardous or deadly weapon. For instance, a small utility knife can be used for many other purposes than just threatening another person. For this reason, it is not serious to threaten the life or another person or cause a physical injury.
Sentence
Because the second-degree menacing is a class A misdemeanor, you are likely to face a one-year jail term if found guilty. You will be taken to a county jail. However, the judge can opt to sentence you to a probation term instead of a typical jail term. Also, you may be required to pay a fine of $1,000 instead of going to jail.

New York Penal Code 120.14: second-degree menacing
A person is found guilty with a second-degree menacing when:
1. He or she attempts or intentionally places another person in fear of death or physical injury by displaying a dangerous weapon or deadly instrument. You can also display anything that appears to be a revolver, gun, pistol, machine gun, short gun, or any other firearm.
2. He or she repeatedly follows another person repeatedly in a manner that suggests they might be in danger of physical harm or death.

The nyc criminal attorneys Law Firm
You might think that being arrested for a second-degree misdemeanor offense is not so serious. However, this is a serious offense. The conviction resulting from this offense can affect you for the rest of your life living with a criminal record. You may spend one year in jail away from your family members and close friends. However, there are many defenses associated with this criminal offense to make it dropped or reduced. The staffs at the NYC Criminal Attorneys Law Firm have enough experience in representing and defending clients with criminal charges. Please contact us for a free consultation session.

New York Penal Code 120.15: Menacing in the third degree

Menacing is defined in the New York Penal Code as a crime that involves conduct or words that place another individual in fear of immediate bodily harm. Actual physical contact or injury is not required for a person to be charged with menacing. There are three levels of menacing in the New York Penal Code, including menacing in the third degree.

Elements of Menacing in the Third Degree

Menacing in the third degree is the least serious of all three of the basic menacing charges listed in the New York penal code. The Code classifies menacing in the third degree as a class B misdemeanor.

Unlike first or second degree menacing, a weapon need not be displayed in order to be charged with this crime. Rather, threatening words and physical action, short of physical contact, can be sufficient to warrant a charge of menacing in the third degree.

Examples of Menacing in the Third Degree

An example of menacing in the third degree is a situation in which a person follows another individual around. This differs from stalking in that menacing does not require recurring instances of a perpetrator following the alleged victim around.

A person subject to a restraining order might face a menacing in the third degree charge if he or she violates that court decree. In other words, in addition to being charges with contempt for violating the court order, a person subject to a restraining order may face a charge of menacing in the third degree if he or she follows the person who obtained the retraining order.

Sentence for Menacing in the Third Degree

Because menacing in the third degree is a misdemeanor, the maximum possible sentence upon conviction is one year in the county jail. If a person has no criminal record to speak of, that individual is likely to obtain a sentence of probation if found guilty of menacing in the third degree. Even if a jail sentence is imposed, the term is likely to be less than a year on a conviction for menacing in the third degree. This particularly is the case if a person does not have an extensive criminal history.

The court can also impose a fine in a case involving menacing in the third degree. The maximum fine that can be imposed in this type of case is $1,000.

Defenses for Menacing in the Third Degree

The primary defense to a menacing in the third degree charge is that the complaining witness has not accurately described what occurred. In other words, a skilled, experienced NYC criminal lawyer will argue that the person charged with menacing in the third degree did not engage in any conduct that constitutes threatening behavior pursuant to the terms of the law.

Another defense to a charge of menacing in the third degree is based on what is known as the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations sets a two-year time frame within which this type of misdemeanor charge must be filed. If charges are not brought within that two-year time period, a person can raise the defense that it is too late to prosecute a charge of menacing in the third degree.

An experienced New York criminal defense attorney will schedule an initial consultation to discuss potential defenses in a menacing in the third degree case. In addition, a lawyer will provide answers to any questions about a case and menacing in the third degree charges. As a matter of practice, New York criminal defense lawyers do not charge at attorney fee for an initial consultation with a prospective client in a menacing case.

New York Penal Code 120.18: Menacing a police officer or peace officer

As per New York Penal Law section 120.18, the crime of menacing a police officer is punishable as a class D felony. A person can be charged with the crime if he or she intentionally “places or attempts to place a police officer or peace officer in reasonable fear of injury, serious personal injury or death by displaying a deadly weapon, pistol, revolver, rifle, shotgun, machine gun or other firearm or other firearm, whether operable or not, where such officer was in the course of performing his or her official duties and the defendant knew or reasonably should have known that such victim was a police officer or peace officer.”

There’s no statutory requirement that a person must actually harm a police or peace officer. In fact, there’s no requirement that actual physical contact must be made. Causing a police or peace officer to have imminent apprehension of bodily harm or death while in the course of their official duties is sufficient.

A scenario
For example, a purse snatcher knocks down an elderly lady and steals her purse. A uniformed police officer in an unmarked car witnesses the attack. He gets out of his car and gives chase. He yells at the snatcher ahead of him that he’s a police officer, and he commands him to stop. Yes, the snatcher stops, but he brandishes an unloaded gun. Under those circumstances, it’s perfectly reasonable for the police officer to have an imminent apprehension of bodily hard or death. Regardless of whether the gun was loaded or unloaded, the purse snatcher is likely to be found guilty of menacing a police officer.

How should the snatcher know he was being chased by the police?
In our example, the officer involved in the chase identified himself as a police officer, and he was in full uniform. If he wasn’t in uniform, and he failed to identify himself as a police officer, the snatcher might have a viable defense on the menacing charge. Standard New York jury instructions look as to whether “in the same circumstances, a reasonable person in the same position and possessing the same knowledge, would have known that such intended victim was” a police officer or peace officer.

In the course of official duties
A police officer might be off duty but still carrying a badge and a weapon. Had the officer identified himself to the snatcher as a police officer and flashed a badge, it would likely be determined that he was acting in the course of his duties.

The class D felony
New York classifies menacing a police officer as a violent crime. On that basis, the maximum penalty for a violent class D felony in the State of New York is seven years in prison with a mandatory minimum sentence of two years. Much of a judge’s sentencing discretion in that range depends on whether the individual who was convicted has a prior criminal history.

Under the circumstances of this case, the snatcher would probably be facing several felony charges, and an NYC criminal lawyer will be needed. It’s also possible that the snatcher will be followed for life with a felony conviction for a violent crime. There might be sentencing alternatives available to avoid prison and a conviction for a violent felony. We have vast experience in defending these types of cases. Don’t give the police any type of statement or confession. Talk with us first by calling 888-608-3420 for a free consultation. We’re available 24 hours a day, and we treat each case as if it’s the most important case in the courthouse. Your case certainly is for you.

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