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What is a New York City Desk Appearance Ticket (D.A.T.)?

Regardless of whether you arrested for Petit Larceny for shoplifting in Manhattan (NY PL 155.25 or 165.40), Theft of Services (NY PL 165.15) in Brooklyn, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance (NY PL 220.03) for personal drug possession in Queens or Criminal Possession of a Weapon (NY PL 265.01) for possessing a gravity knife anywhere in New York City, in certain circumstances the New York City Police Department can issue you a Desk Appearance Ticket or DAT. As a result, it is possible to be out of police custody in three to six hours instead of being shipped off to central booking. Regardless of the crime alleged, if you need a New York criminal lawyer for your arrest and processing that may take up to 24 hours in a “regular” case, you will also need an attorney for a Desk Appearance Ticket arrest as well. At bottom, the charges and potential ramifications of a criminal record and to your career are identical.

The authority to issue or give New York City Desk Appearance Tickets instead of processing an accused through the tombs and central booking, is based in New York Criminal Procedure Law Article 150. In substance, the statutes contained there address what a DAT is, who can issue such a notice and the means by which it is done.

Despite what some people may believe is true, a Desk Appearance Ticket is not a charging document. Unlike a traffic ticket where a mistake may mean the difference between a dismissal and a conviction, the same cannot be said for a DAT. That is, a Desk Appearance Ticket in New York City is merely a vehicle or device to advise and inform you of a future date in court. If your name is spelled incorrectly, the section of the New York Penal Law is mistyped or there is some other clerical error, the case against has not been impacted in any way. In fact, if you retain counsel to represent you at your arraignment (the first time you see the judge) for your Desk Appearance Ticket charges, the court will provide your attorney with a charging document called a criminal court complaint. This complaint may have additional crimes alleged beyond those contained on the papers the police gave you. Moreover, at that point in time your actual DAT will have little or no use.

For additional information on Desk Appearance Tickets as well as relevant DAT laws, please review the New York Criminal Lawyer Blog Desk Appearance Ticket section. Further information is available on specific crimes such as Shoplifting (New York Penal Law sections 155.25 or 165.40), Drug Possession (New York Penal Law 220.03) and Knife Possession (New York Penal Law 265.01) through the respective links as well.

Beyond these resources, Crotty Saland PC’s is an additional source of information for those arrested in New York City for misdemeanor crimes.

Call our criminal 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 Crotty Saland 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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