A Queens Criminal Lawyer said that, while the delay has been extensive, the other factors favor the prosecution. Two bar owners were shot point blank after defendant’s cohort allegedly became enraged over a spilled drink, resulting in second degree murder charges. There was virtually no pretrial incarceration. The defense has not been impaired; to the contrary, defendant has enjoyed significant freedom with no public suspicion attendant upon an untried accusation of crime, and the record does not demonstrate undue prejudice to the defense. Far from giving the People an unfair tactical advantage, the delay here has made the case against defendant more difficult to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. In any event, a determination made in good faith to delay prosecution for sufficient reasons will not deprive defendant of due process even though there may be some prejudice to defendant.
A Queens Criminal Lawyer said that, the Homicide Bureau of the Queens County District Attorney’s Office applied in a written memorandum dated March 25, 1982, for authority to present “the case for Grand Jury consideration of two counts of murder in the second degree. As the foregoing discussion demonstrates, the evidence against defendant at that time was indistinguishable from that against him and only differed from the proof inculpating him in the respect that he was the only one of the three suspects arrested and, following the arrest, put in a lineup and identified as a participant in the shootings by the victim.
The issue in this case is whether the constitutional rights of the defendant have been impaired due to denial of speedy trial.
The Appellate Division’s determination that the People established good cause for the delay in prosecuting the criminal defendant is a mixed question of law and fact for which there is support in the record. This case involves a 1981 vicious double murder in a Queens’s bar, for which no one has yet been prosecuted. Three individuals linked to organized crime were thought to be suspects: defendant. While 20 to 25 people allegedly were in the bar at the time of the murders, virtually all of them denied seeing the crime. Shortly after the murders, the main witness either fled the jurisdiction or hid from the police, refusing to cooperate. Another witness recanted her identification of defendant resulting in dismissal of an criminal indictment against him. Defendant has never been located. The Appellate Division’s inference of witness fear has ample support in the record, placing the good cause issue beyond this Court’s further review.
To Be Cont..
The court held that the order of the Appellate Division should be affirmed.
If you are involved in a similar situation seek the help of a Queens Gun Crime Attorney and Queens Criminal Attorney at Stephen Bilkis and Associates.