Falsely Reporting an Incident in the Second Degree

Any felony arrest or indictment has potential ramifications well beyond the threat of prison. Falsely Reporting and Incident in the Second Degree is no different. An “E” felony, New York Penal Law 240.55 is punishable by up to as many as four years in state prison. If this is not your first felony offense, the four year cap remains the same, but you may also face a mandatory minimum of one and one half to three years in state prison if you are convicted NY PL 240.55. It should be fairly clear that your mistake or even drunken prank can utterly destroy your future whether you are a college student, lawyer, teacher, financial services employee or any other professional. What will compound this criminal act is not putting yourself in the best position to fight the charges with the assistance of an experienced New York criminal lawyer.

The general premise around Falsely Reporting an Incident in the Second Degree is that you convey or circulate information that you know to be false. In doing so, you must also act in a manner as described in one of the following sections:

  1. Report that the information circulated pertains to a false warning or occurrence of a fire or explosion in which it is not unlikely the public will be alarmed or even inconvenienced.

  2. Make a report, regardless of the manner, to an agency (government or quasi-official), that’s role or job is to deal with emergencies involving danger to property or life. This report must be of a false past occurrence or one that you know will not transpire and concern a fire, explosion or release of a hazardous substance. Lastly, as a result of this report, it must not be unlikely that the public will either be alarmed or inconvenienced.

  3. Report or warn of an alleged incident or impending incident of a fire, explosion or release of any hazardous substance on private property. Like the section above, you must know that the information shared is false or baseless and it must be under circumstances that are likely to inconvenience or alarm the general public.

Obviously, the above definitions and subsections of Falsely Reporting an Incident seem fairly nominal. In fact, that pulling of the fire alarm can potentially be a felony act. Make no mistake, there may be some viable defenses to the allegations against you. Even if not, it may be that this act was an aberration in an otherwise your otherwise impeccable track record. Regardless, do not let a felony Falsely Reporting an Incident, along with a misdemeanor or felony Reckless Endangerment, destroy your future. Educate yourself on the law and consult with counsel to put this incident behind you.

Call the New York criminal defense lawyers and former Manhattan Assistant District Attorneys at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.

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