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Defendant Claims Insufficient Evidence for an Indictment


This case involves the plaintiffs, the People of the State of New York versus the defendant, Edward Cicciari. The case is being heard in the Criminal Term of the Supreme Court of the state of New York in Queens County.

A New York Sex Crimes Lawyer said the counsel for the defendant is seeking an inspection of the minutes presented to the Grand Jury that resulted in the defendant being indicted for first degree rape, first degree sodomy, first degree burglary, aggravated sexual abuse, attempted burglary, criminal mischief, and resisting arrest.

The defendant is seeking that a number of counts on the indictment be dismissed based on the fact that the indictment was not founded on competent and sufficient legal evidence.

Court Discussion and Decisions

The court has allowed for the Grand Jury minutes to be reviewed and the following has been found.

The court does not find any evidence to support the accusation of first degree sodomy. The female complainant has testified concerning the alleged rape that took place. A New York Sex Crime Lawyer said the court agrees that there are sufficient facts for the indictment of rape against the defendant. However, the only support for the alleged sodomy is the statement made by the plaintiff stating that he placed his finger in her anus.

Sodomy in the first degree is described in the Penal Law as an act that occurs when a person engages in deviant intercourse with another individual through forcible compulsion. It is also described as contact between the penis and the mouth, penis and the anus, and of the mouth with the vulva. The court has not found any acts of this nature in the Grand Jury minutes. A Nassau County Sex Crimes Lawyer said while this second count of the indictment would typically be dismissed, the Court is not dismissing the complaint because there is the possibility of a lesser offense that could be included in the case.

In regard to the third count of the indictment for aggravated sexual abuse, the defendant is accused of inserting a foreign object into the vagina or rectum of the victim. From the provided testimony it is found that the defendant inserted his finger into the victim’s rectum and the question is whether or not a finger should be considered a foreign object as identified by the Penal laws.

Section 130 of the Penal Law defines a foreign object as anything that is inserted into the vagina or rectum that is capable of causing a physical injury. Examples of foreign objects provided in the code include gun handles, brooms, and other such physical instruments.

It is felt that the insertion of a finger into the rectum of the victim is not the kind of mental or physical trauma that would be considered under section 130 of the Penal law. In addition, there is no report of any physical injury to the victim. A Queens Sex Crimes Lawyer said the victim states that she went to her gynecologist the day following the rape and received tests for diseases and penicillin shots.

After reviewing the case the court is denying the motion to dismiss the counts of rape, sodomy, burglary, and resisting arrest. The aggravated sexual abuse, attempted burglary, and criminal mischief counts are dismissed.

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