Written by attorney Bruce Robert Connolly

Public Urination in Manhattan

If you receive a summons for public urination in Manhattan, you will most likely be given instructions to appear at a certain date at the branch of the New York Criminal Court located at 346 Broadway. This matter cannot be disposed through a payment via mail; you must appear personally in court or authorize an attorney to do so on your behalf. While this is a relatively minor charge, it still needs to be handled with the seriousness and sophistication as any other criminal charge. For this reason, an attorney can be quite helpful in navigating you through what can otherwise be an unfamiliar atmosphere.

Upon arrival at court, your attorney can review the documents in the court file to see if any arguments can be made about the validity of your summons. If so, your attorney will make these arguments when you stand before the judge. If there are no such arguments to be made, your attorney can request that you be given an ACD, which is an Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal. Simply put, this means that as long as you do not get arrested within the next six months, the case is automatically dismissed, sealed, and will not lead to a criminal record. The dismissal is automatic after the six months, and you need not appear or do anything else to trigger the dismissal.

If the judge is not inclined to grant an ACD, he or she will probably offer a plea to a violation of a littering charge, pursuant to the New York City Administrative Code. This will typically involve a 50-dollar fine. Note that this plea is to a violation, not a crime, and will not lead to a criminal record.

A public urination offense was most likely committed due to a quick lapse of good judgment. It can be disposed of just as quickly, so contact an experienced attorney to inquire about what steps need be taken to ensure that this incident does not affect your future.

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