Bronx Student Defense Lawyer
If you are a student, your primary focus should be on completing your studies and participating, not dealing with criminal charges or the penalties associated with them. If you are accused of a crime, however, help is available.
A qualified Bronx student defense lawyer could review your situation and provide knowledgeable and dedicated legal assistance. If need be, your criminal defense attorney could also represent you in court to defend your rights, always with the goal of ensuring your life is disrupted as little as possible while they work to resolve your case.
What are Some Common Legal Issues for Students in the Bronx?
Although every legal case is different, there are several criminal charges that commonly arise against students, including driving while intoxicated (DWI), assault and battery, domestic violence, and various offenses related to underage drinking and possession of illegal drugs. These and other similar charges may be prosecuted differently depending on the severity of the allegations, as well as whether the charge is a misdemeanor or a felony.
For example, an individual who is convicted on charges of DWI may need to pay a fine of between $300 and $500, according to New York Vehicle and Traffic Law §1193. Additionally, they may be imprisoned for up to 15 days. Any student facing these or other criminal charges should contact a Bronx student defense lawyer for advice and assistance.
Criminal Punishments for Students
In some situations, criminal punishments may be different for students compared to other adults. For example, a student under the age of 21 may face DWI charges under NYVTL §1192-a if found behind the wheel of a vehicle with a blood alcohol level of 0.02 percent, while the equivalent legal limit for adults over 21 is 0.08 percent as per NYVTL §1192.
Additionally, students face potential civil or administrative punishments from their school or university as a result of criminal charges. Even if a student is ultimately acquitted of a charge in criminal court, their school may take steps to suspend or expel them.
Generally, each school has a different procedure for dealing with students that are accused of a crime that is typically set forth in a student handbook or other similar document. Usually, a school administrator or other official must initiate a disciplinary hearing against the accused student. In most cases, such hearings are similar to an abbreviated trial, meaning students have the opportunity to present evidence or other mitigating circumstances in their defense that may reduce any potential punishment.
However, since such hearings are not governed by New York Penal Law, students may not have the same rights as they might in criminal proceedings. For example, they may not have the opportunity to cross-examine those testifying against them. Since each school disciplinary situation is different, any student who needs assistance with disciplinary hearings or defending themselves against administrative punishments may benefit from calling a student defense attorney in the Bronx to get personalized advice on their specific case.
Role of an Attorney During an Administrative Hearing
Students have the right to representation by an attorney when they are facing criminal charges. This right also extends to student disciplinary hearings. However, unlike a criminal charge, the university does not provide a student with legal counsel if they are facing disciplinary charges. In fact, many schools fail to inform students of their right to legal counsel at all. While a student must arrange for their own attorney, they are entitled to representation during their hearing. It is important to note that a Bronx defense attorney may not be allowed to appear with a student at these hearings, but they still may seek advice and prepare with legal counsel.
Can Student Face Administrative Discipline for Off-Campus Incidents?
In many cases, students could face administrative discipline for activities that occur off-campus. However, the ability of a university to discipline students based on activity that occurs off-campus or even when school is not in session will depend in part on the notice provided to the students. It could be possible to overturn disciplinary actions based on violations if the rules are unclear. The same is true in cases where the university never gave clear notice of prohibited behavior.
How Could a Criminal Conviction Impact Future Educational Opportunities?
For many students, the primary concern when facing criminal charges or administrative review is the immediate consequences they face. This is understandable, as the threat of jail time or expulsion from college involve steep and immediate consequences.
However, these accusations could also have future consequences. In fact, a criminal charge that does not upend a student’s college career could still diminish their chances of pursuing a post-graduate degree. Every university is different, but many schools will weigh a criminal conviction heavily when considering an application.
Speak with a Bronx Student Defense Attorney
Although most students do not have to face criminal prosecution during their collegiate careers, sometimes youthful mistakes, unfortunately, turn into criminal ones. If this happens to you, there are resources available for you to call on for legal assistance if you need it.
If you need help, get in touch with a Bronx student defense lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney who knows how to address and defend cases like yours could investigate your unique situation and work to collect and establish evidence that may be helpful to your case. Call today to schedule an initial consultation.