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New York Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in or Near School Grounds

Charges for New York criminal sale of a controlled substance in or near school grounds depends on the type and amount of drugs involved, and where the alleged sale took place. If you have been accused of bringing illegal substances around children, contact a distinguished drug lawyer about your options.  

Those charged with selling illicit drugs could face harsher penalties if the alleged sale took place in or near school grounds. In such situations where controlled substances are sold such as heroin, Molly, cocaine, MDMA, or similar drugs, the accused could face a Class B felony charge in violation of New York Penal Law 220.44, Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree.

New York State Drug, Narcotic, and Controlled Substance Crimes

In New York, drug crimes are considered a public health hazard. Drug offenses that directly or indirectly involve children are taken very seriously because of the possible health risks. Therefore, the law harshly punishes those convicted of this crime. In fact, upon conviction of PL 220.44, a judge will sentence you to two to nine years in a New York State prison for a first-time offender. If you are a predicate felon with a non-violent or violent history, the sentence will increase significantly.

Selling Controlled Substances on School Grounds

The law that specifically prohibits the New York criminal sale of a controlled substance in or near school grounds is New York Penal Code 220.44. This crime broadly defines “school grounds” as in or near any actual school grounds, school buses, child daycare facilities, or educational facilities.

The law goes on to define day care facilities as a “building, structure, athletic playing field, a playground or land contained within the real property boundary line of a public or private child day care center.”

This means that someone could be charged with criminal sale of a controlled substances in or near school grounds with no children actually present at the time of the alleged sale and as long as the person is within 1000 feet of school ground. In New York City, unlike many suburban areas, there are “school grounds” located in countless neighborhoods. It makes no difference if you, the accused seller, were unaware that the playground, parking area or physical school was 300, 700 or 1000 feet away.

Classifying Felony Convictions

Essentially, New York State law penalizes the unlawful sale of controlled substances anywhere that schoolchildren may be present. Those convicted of this crime face:

  • Class B felony conviction on their criminal record
  • Up to nine years in prison for a first-time offender
  • One to two years post release supervision
  • Extensive fines

Those convicted of the criminal sale of controlled substances in or near school grounds face harsh penalties at the time of conviction. However, a prison sentence and fines are not the only consequences someone convicted of this crime face.

A drug conviction cannot be expunged in New York. This means those convicted of any drug offense will retain a conviction on their criminal record indefinitely. Even if your criminal defense lawyer or drug sale defense attorney convinces both a prosecutor and judge to offer you an alternative without incarceration, such as a treatment program, at best your criminal conviction can be sealed. This, however, is far from an easy task.

Nobody should ignore the fact that a felony conviction, even for a first offense and outside of incarceration, can permanently hinder someone’s career and educational opportunities. For those who are foreign nationals holding visas, green cards or are here illegally, the ramifications are even greater.

If you are facing charges for New York criminal sale of a controlled substance in or near school grounds, do not delay another minute; call a New York drug defense attorney. Your attorney will work hard to defend you in and out of court. Call now to discuss your defense strategy with a criminal defense lawyer to protect your life, liberty and future.

Call the New York City Drug Sale Lawyers and Former Manhattan Prosecutors at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.

Client Reviews
... I was facing a class B felony and potentially tens of thousands in fines and some legit jail time and after hiring Jeremy Saland he obviously struck enough fear into the prosecutors with his sheer litigation might that it was knocked down to a petty misdemeanor and after a few sheckles and a handful of counseling sessions, I will no longer have a criminal record. The offices of Saland Law are the Shaq and Kobe of criminal defense in New York City and to even consider another firm is outright blasphemy. I stand by this statement 100% Evan
Let me start by saying how amazing Liz Crotty is! I am a resident of California, who needed representation for my son who received a desk citation while he was visiting NYC. Liz jumped on the case right away; she was very thorough in explaining things to me. She is strictly business too! She went to court on my son's behalf and had his case dismissed. I am forever grateful to her. Seana G.
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