Second Degree Aggravated Interference with Health Care Services

Second Degree Aggravated Interference with Health Care Services, New York Penal Law 240.72, is enhances Criminal Interference with Health Care Services or Religious Worship in the Second Degree while at the same limiting the scope of the crime to those offenses only involving health care services. In other words, even though New York Penal Law 240.72 incorporates Criminal Interference with Health Care Services or Religious Worship, actions involving or aimed at religious institutions and the free practice of religion are not included.

A class “E” felony with a potential sentence of one and a third to four years in a New York State prison upon conviction, you violate Second Degree Aggravated Interference with Health Care Services if you use force, the threat of force, or physical obstruction and intentionally injure, intimidate or interfere with (or attempt to do the same) another person who is obtaining or providing reproductive services. What makes this crime “aggravated” and more significant than New York Penal Law 240.70, is that Second Degree Criminal Interference with Health Care Services or Religious Worship pursuant to New York Penal Law 240.70(1)(a) merely requires an injury regardless of how insignificant, Aggravated Interference with Health Care Services mandates a physical injury.

“Physical injury,” unlike a mere injury, is defined in the New York Penal Law and the various legal decisions that address crimes including Third Degree Assault. In substance, a “physical injury” is a type of injury that causes substantial pain or an impairment of one’s physical condition. Such an injury would likely not include an insignificant slap, but at the same time the New York criminal law would not require stitches, broken bones or a similar type of harm. In fact, injuries that maim, cause protracted and long term physical ailments or are precariously close to causing death, are considered “serious physical injuries.”

A “blue” state, New York respects and protects the right of women and men both obtaining and providing reproductive healthcare services. New York Penal Law 240.72 codifies this protection and provides law enforcement with the tools to enforce the rights bestowed upon these people seeking and giving reproductive health care treatment. Should you obstruct this right or, as with Second Degree Aggravated Interference with Health Care Services, cause a physical injury, expect that the local District Attorney where your case is pending to vigorously enforce the law.

Despite the clear language in the statute, remember that you too have rights and the police must follow the law in their enforcement measures. Never hesitate to explore all of your potential defenses and ready yourself to implement the best defense available. The alternative, a failure to take action, may mean months or years locked away in jail or prison.

Contact the New York criminal defense attorneys and former Manhattan prosecutors at Crotty Saland PC to both navigate the criminal justice system on your behalf and to best defend you both inside and outside the courtroom.

Call us at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.

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