Bronx County District Attorneys Office by ghkgkyyt


									OFFICE OF THE

                     Prosecution, Partnerships
                     & Collaborations Violent
                     C r i m e B r o n x Mental
                     Health Court Drug Crime
     Annual          Operation Weed & Seed
                     Bronx Treatment Court
                     Integrated Domestic

                     Violence Part Crime
                     Victims Assistance Gang
                     Initiative Hate Crime
                     Elder Abuse P r o j e c t
     2002            Urban High Crime
                     Neighborhood Initiative
                     Auto Crime Initiatives
                     Economic Crime Safe
                     Neighborhoods Joint
                     Training Program with the
                     NYPD Community Outreach

Robert T. Johnson
District Attorney      
                                              District Attorney’s Message
                                            “... the current challenge facing my
                                           Office is preserving our core function
                                          –doing everything possible to keep the
                                         crime rate falling–within the constraints
                                         of a declining budget. The cuts have been
                                                      real and painful.”
Robert T. Johnson, District Attorney

       The extraordinary fiscal cri-     to have the highest rates of murder,    have attrited some 100 attorney and
sis facing our State and City con-       rape, and felonious assault of any of   staff positions, severely curtailed the
tinues to worsen, forcing difficult      New York City’s five boroughs. For      hiring of new assistant district attor-
choices to be made at all levels of      example, the 171 Bronx murders in       neys, cut internships, redeployed
government. As we strive to meet         2002 constitute nearly 30% of the       staff, and reduced expenses in a
our commitments to the people of         citywide total. In addition, more       wide variety of areas. Currently, all
the Bronx despite new and                than one in four of the City’s rapes    divisions, legal bureaus, and units
increasing constraints on available      and nearly one in four of the City’s    are understaffed. I am proud to say,
resources, the current watchwords        felonious assaults occurred in the      however, that despite all this, last
for my Office are public safety,         Bronx, a level well in excess of the    year my Office sent a higher pro-
efficiency, and leanness.                borough’s 16.6% share of the City’s     portion of convicted felons to state
       Not all the news is dire.         population. Overall arrests for all     prison than the statewide average.
Despite the fiscal crisis, most cate-    crime also rose last year, to a level   We also had some striking successes
gories of crime continued to decline     42% higher than that in 1990.           in court, including one of the earli-
in 2002. Homicides were down                   Accordingly, the current chal-    est trial convictions under the
again from last year, falling below      lenge facing my Office is preserving    State’s new hate crime law.
200 for the sixth consecutive year. In   our core function–doing everything            We also continue to innovate,
fact, in the past 13 years the number    possible to keep the crime rate         partnering with other law enforce-
of homicides in the Bronx has been       falling–within the constraints of a     ment agencies, treatment groups,
reduced by 74%, from 653 in 1990         declining budget. The cuts have         community organizations, and the
to 171 in 2002. Overall violent          been real and painful. Since July       public at large. For example, in 2002
crime also continues to decline. In      2001, my Office has absorbed over       we launched a gang initiative that
2002, violent crime was 6% lower         $5 million in budget reductions and     brings together representatives of
than in 2001 and nearly 65% lower        faces an additional $2 million in       many agencies to share intelligence
than in 1990. Auto crime also con-       FY2004, for a total reduction of        and develop joint strategies aimed at
tinued to decline.                       18.25%. The most optimistic sce-        curtailing gang-related crime.
       Despite the decrease in violent   narios call for further substantial     Project Safe Neighborhoods, a
crime, however, the Bronx continues      reductions in the year to come. We      national anti-gun strategy in which

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                1
Bronx and U.S. Attorney prosecu-       placement, and program evaluation      nity in the northern end of the
tors, police and federal law           for the Bronx Mental Health Court.     county (Community District 12).
enforcement agencies all collabo-      We recommended 98 defendants for             Recognizing that difficult
rate, also began operations in 2002,   placement in this new program,         times are likely to continue, we
as did a joint training program with   which is tailored to defendants suf-   remain committed to serving the
the NYPD.                              fering from both drug dependency       people of Bronx County. Through
      In addition to the traditional   and mental illness. Hundreds more      flexibility, professionalism and plain
prosecutorial tools of conviction      were enrolled in other drug treat-     hard work, we intend to maintain
and imprisonment, we continue to       ment programs. Despite limited         our high standards and do every-
employ treatment programs and          resources, we have also strained to    thing possible to insure that the
other non-traditional strategies. In   continue our community-based pro-      community receives the very best we
2002, we entered into a partnership    grams, even expanding some. In         can give.
with Treatment Alternatives to         2002, with resources from a federal
Street Crime (TASC) and the            planning grant, we began the Urban
Research Triangle Institute to pro-    High Crime Neighborhood
vide mental health and drug depen-     Initiative, which will bring crime
dence screening and assessment,        victim services closer to the commu-

  2                                                                                        Annual Report 2002
                       Table of Contents

            DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S MESSAGE                                                           1
            CRIME OVERVIEW                                                                        4
                      Reduction in Crime and Increase in Arrests                                  5
                      Bronx County ’s Higher Proportion of Violent Crime                          6

            PROSECUTING CRIME                                                                     7
                      LOWER D ISMISSAL R ATE                                                      8
                      C RIME V ICTIMS A SSISTANCE U NIT                                           9
                      V IOLENT C RIME                                                            10
                      D RUG C RIME                                                               13
                      H ATE C RIME                                                               15

            PARTNERSHIPS AND COLLABORATION                                                       17
                      B R O N X M E N T A L H E A LT H C O U R T                                 17
                      B RONX T REATMENT C OURT                                                   17
                      O PERATION W EED           AND    S EED                                    18
                      I NTEGRATED D OMESTIC V IOLENCE P ART                                      19
                      U R B A N H I G H C R I M E N E I G H B O R H O O D I N I T I AT I V E     20
                      B R O N X D I S T R I C T A T T O R N E Y ’ S G A N G I N I T I AT I V E   21
                      A UTO C RIME I NITIATIVES                                                  22
                      E LDER A BUSE                                                              23
                      P ROJECT S AFE N EIGHBORHOODS                                              25
                      M ULTIDISCIPLINARY T EAM                                                   26
                      INTERNET CRIME                                                             26
                      JOINT TRAINING PROGRAM                                                     27
                      C O L L A B O R AT I O N   WITH   AMERICAN RED CROSS                       27

            COMMUNITY OUTREACH                                                                   29

Annual Report 2002                                                                                    3
                                        Crime Overview

     In 2002 crime in the Bronx was reduced to levels not seen in decades. There were 4% fewer crime com-
plaints in 2002 than in the previous year. The largest decrease (11%) was in burglary complaints, which have
declined 73% since 1990 (from 19,326 to 5,159). This year auto theft also declined by nearly 6%, and robbery
complaints declined nearly 8%, contributing to a 77% decline in auto theft since 1990 and a 71% decline in
robbery during the same period. There has been a 74% reduction in murders since 1990.

     Last year we reported that               was less than that for 1990                                  in 10% fewer murders than there
the sum of all murders in the                 alone. In 2002 the number of                                 were in 2001.
Bronx between 1999 and 2001                   murders was still lower, resulting

    Decline In Homicides
    1990 - 2002

        700      653
                                                                                          Since 1990, Bronx homicides
                            554        547
        600                                                                                have declined by over 74%.


                                                                                          196                              190        189
                                                                                                     166                                     171
        200                                                                                                     137


               90      91         92         93         94         95     96         97         98         99         00         01         02

    S o u r c e : N e w Yo r k C i t y P o l i c e D e p a r t m e n t

  4                                                                                                                              Annual Report 2002
     Overall violent crime in                2002 violent crime was 6% low-                      period, arrests in the Bronx
the Bronx has decreased every                er than in 2001 and 67% lower                       increased by 42%.
year between 1994 and 2002. In               than in 1990. During the same

    Bronx Reduction in Violent Crime v. Increase in Arrests
    Percentage Change from 1990 - 2002
          70%                                                                                60.5%                  64.3%
          60%           Arrest %
          50%                                                                       49.6%
                        Violent Crime %                                                                47.0%
          40%                                                           42.1%                                               39.3%
          30%                                         36.4%
          10%            2.1%      -0.2%     10.7%
         -10%                                        14.6%
                     -1.1%         -7.7%   -5.3%
         -20%                                                  -27.2%
         -40%                                                                       -46.3%
         -50%                                                                                          -56.5% -57.5%
         -60%                                                                                                               -64.7%

                90      91         92      93        94       95      96       97           98       99        00       01          02
    S o u r c e : N e w Yo r k C i t y P o l i c e D e p a r t m e n t

     The Bronx was the only New              (NYPD) initiatives such as                          decrease of nearly 5% in the rest of
York City borough to show an                 Operation Spotlight, Bronx mis-                     the City.
increase in arrests in 2002. Led by          demeanor arrests increased close
New York City Police Department              to 6% over 2001, compared to a

    Percent Change in Misdemeanor Arrests
    2001 - 2002

     6.00%                                                                                                           Bronx
     4.00%                                                                                                           Rest of the City

                                        Bronx                                               Rest of City
    Source: NYPD Criminal Justice Bureau

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                                           5
BRONX COUNTY’S HIGHER                categories reported by the NYPD        wide total. Bronx shooting incidents
PROPORTION OF CITYWIDE               (murder, rape, robbery, felonious      represented 26% of such incidents
VIOLENT CRIME                        assault, burglary, grand larceny and   citywide. More than one in four of
                                     motor vehicle theft) dropped in the    the City’s rapes and nearly one in
      Despite these encouraging      Bronx and the rest of New York         four of the City’s felony assaults
reductions in crime, in 2002 the     City. Even with the remarkable         occurred in the Bronx, giving the
Bronx still experienced a higher     decreases in violent crime, however,   county the highest incidence per
incidence of crime than is propor-   drugs and violence are still very      100,000 population of murder, rape
tional to its 16.6% share of the     serious problems in the Bronx. In      and felonious assault.
City’s population. Since 1990,       2002 the 171 murders in the Bronx
crime complaints across the seven    constituted nearly 30% of the city-

    Bronx Violent Crime 2002
    Percentage of Citywide Violent Crime v. Population

                                                                  In nearly every category, the
      Burglary                        16.5%                     Bronx’s share of the City’s vio-
                                                                 lent crime exceeds it’s 16.6%
                                                                share of the City’s population.
      Robbery                                 19.0%

      Felony Assault                                       23.8%

      Rape                                                       25.8%

      Murder                                                                29.5%
    0%           5%           10%          15%16.6%       20%           25%          30%           35%
    S o u r c e : N e w Yo r k C i t y P o l i c e D e p a r t m e n t

  6                                                                                      Annual Report 2002
                                 Prosecuting Crime
     The Bronx District Attorney’s Office prosecuted 6,394 felony-level defendants in 2002, an increase of 7% over
2001. Narcotics cases accounted for more than half of the felony prosecutions in Bronx County.

     Bronx District Attorney’s Office
     Felony Prosecutions: 2002

          Total Felony                                     6% Guns
          Prosecutions: 6,394
                                                                          8% Other
                                                                                7% Assault

                             51%                                                      5% Homicide
                                                                                  3% Sex Crimes
                                                                                 11% Robbery

                                                             5% CPSP & Larceny
                                                       4% Burglary
    S o u r c e : B r o n x D i s t r i c t A t t o r n e y ’s O ff i c e

      In each of the past 13 years, this Office sent a higher proportion of convicted felons to state prison than the
statewide average.

    Percentage of Convicted Felons Sentenced to State Prison
    New York State v. Bronx 1990-2002

    60%             Bronx
                    New York State


            90      91      92     93      94     95      96      97      98     99      00      01     02
    Source: NYS Department of Criminal Justice Services

Annual Report 2002                                                                                              7

      Since 1996 the Bronx District Attorney’s Office has had lower Criminal Court and Supreme Court dismissal
rates than the rest of New York City.

    Criminal Court Dismissal Rate
    Bronx v. Rest of City 1996-2002

    40%        Bronx                                                                                                       38.9%
               Rest of the City                      38.9%             39.9%             38.3%            39.5%
                    35.8%           36.2%
            23.7%           24.3%                              23.5%             24.4%            24.6%

                96                97             98                99               00               01                02
    S o u r c e : O ff i c e o f C o u r t A d m i n i s t r a t i o n

    Supreme Court Dismissal Rate
    Bronx v. Rest of City 1996-2002

      12%           Bronx
                    Rest of City         10.2%                                                                                9.9%
      10%             9.6%                              9.7%              9.5%             9.8%
                                                                                                            8.7%       8.9%
                                                 7.7%                               7.8%
        8%      7.3%                                               6.9%                              6.9%


                    96              97               98                99                00               01               02
    S o u r c e : O ff i c e o f C o u r t A d m i n i s t r a t i o n

  8                                                                                                                 Annual Report 2002

     The District Attorney’s Crime Victims Assistance Unit made over 25,000 service contacts with victims and wit-
nesses during 2002.

    Crime Victims Assistance Unit                                           Total 2002 Service
    Contacts By Type of Service Provided                                    Contacts: 25,451

                     Crisis         Relocation                       CVB Application &
                 Counseling         Assistance                       Affidavits
                                               3.2%                             Support
                      3.9%                1.4%                       5.6%
             Therapy                                                            Counseling
                 5.7%                                                           21.6%   Criminal
                                                                                          0.5% Court
                   Info &                                                                 Accompaniment
                                                                   0.8%       10.7% Personal
                                                               Transportation Advocacy

    S o u r c e : O ff i c e o f B r o n x D i s t r i c t A t t o r n e y

    Crime Victims Assistance Unit
                                                                            Total 2002 Client
    Contacts By Type of Crime                                               Contacts: 2,066

                                                Other Violent
                         Child &                   Crimes
                           Elder                   12.6%
                          Abuse                                              10.5%
                           5.5%                                                     Domestic
                                                                                             Sex Crimes
                Assault                                                     Sex Crimes
                 38.5%                                                      Children
    S o u r c e : O ff i c e o f B r o n x D i s t r i c t A t t o r n e y

Annual Report 2002                                                                                           9
                                            VIOLENT CRIME

     Among the homicides prosecuted by this Office in 2002, some stand out. Four such cases are summarized

     Two Bronx Men Plead Guilty to Double Murder
     Bronx Times Reporter, May 3, 2001

                                                           some of the stolen jewelry. Later that night
            Mr. and Mrs. Pena, a couple in their           they went to a birthday party where they
      late 60s, sometimes sold jewelry from their          bragged about the murders. A concerned
      home. In 1999 Jose Colon and David                   party-goer called police. This witness was
      Rodriguez were only 17 and 16 years old,             able to relate some of the details of the
      respectively. Colon and his girlfriend knew          crime and helped police locate the gun
      the Penas through church and had recent-             that was used to commit the murders.
      ly bought a ring from them. On December                    Colon was arrested the following
      10, 1999, Colon and Rodriguez knocked                day with some of the stolen jewelry in his
      on the door of Mr. and Mrs. Pena’s                   possession. Rodriguez was arrested in
      home in the Soundview section of the                 front of his home. A search warrant was
      Bronx. When Mrs. Pena opened the                     executed at his home, and during the
      door, Colon kicked the door in and shot              search several pieces of stolen jewelry
      Mrs. Pena with a .22 caliber rifle, striking         were found, wrapped up to be given away
      her in the left arm and torso. Colon then            as Christmas presents.
      shot Mr. Pena several times, striking him                  Colon pleaded guilty to two counts
      in the head and neck. Finally, Colon                 of murder in the second degree. On July
      returned to the screaming Mrs. Pena and              10, 2002, he was sentenced to two consec-
      shot her in the head. The Penas’ bodies              utive terms of 15 years-to-life imprison-
      were discovered later that day when their            ment. He must serve at least 30 years in
      adoptive daughter returned home from                 prison before becoming eligible for parole.
      elementary school.                                   Rodriguez also pleaded guilty to two
            Before leaving the apartment, Colon            counts of murder in the second degree
      and Rodriguez took two bags filled with              and was sentenced on June 18, 2002, to
      approximately 350 pieces of jewelry.                 two concurrent terms of 20 years-to-life
      Colon and Rodriguez fled the scene of the            imprisonment. Rodriguez will not be eligi-
      robbery and hid the gun a couple of                  ble for parole until he has served 20 years
      blocks away. They then went to pawn                  in prison. !

    New York Post, December 19, 2002

                                                           daughter and three-year-old son in the
           In November 2001, 24-year-old                   care of her boyfriend, 26-year-old Jason
      Melinda (pseudonym) was admitted to                  Lewis. While Melinda was away, Lewis
      the hospital, leaving her seven-year-old             attacked the girl, fracturing her arms and

 10                                                                                    Annual Report 2002
    New York Post, December 19, 2002 continued

     submerging her right arm in boiling liq-            The medical examiner testified
     uid, resulting in third degree burns from     before the jury that numerous aspects of
     wrist to elbow. Lewis tied composition        the injuries could have killed the child.
     books to the child’s distorted arms as        The autopsy states the cause of death as
     makeshift splints. The school notebooks       “fatal child abuse syndrome.”
     had never been used because the child               Lewis interrupted his trial in
     had never been to school.                     November 2002 to plead guilty to murder
           When Melinda returned from the          in the second degree and on December
     hospital five days later, she found her       18, 2002, was sentenced to life imprison-
     daughter beaten and burned. The girl          ment. He must serve at least 20 years
     was able to tell Melinda from bed that        before being eligible for parole. District
     she had “been bad.” Lewis ended the           Attorney Robert Johnson noted, “Life
     youngster’s life in Melinda’s presence by     imprisonment is a most appropriate pun-
     cracking her over the head with a wood-       ishment in light of the brutal and senseless
     en walking cane, causing a subdural hem-      nature of this crime against a vulnerable
     orrhage of the brain. Medical attention       and defenseless child.”
     arrived too late to save the child. When            Melinda pleaded guilty to endanger-
     Lewis heard police sirens, he jumped          ing the welfare of a child on December
     from the window and broke his ankle. He       20, 2001. Melinda’s son was removed
     informed EMS that he jumped to flee           from the home and placed in foster care.
     because he killed Melinda’s daughter.         Melinda is petitioning Family Court for
     Lewis’ stated reason for the killing was      his return. !
     the child was “a pain.”

    A Deadly Case of Mistaken Identity

                                                   Rivera, Milan never made it to either the
           On Saturday, April 4, 2001, Dwight      barber or the dance.
     Milan and his wife had planned to go to a           Twenty-eight-year-old Rivera, a drug
     dance. Milan, a 40-year-old family man        dealer who recently served nine years in
     with two children, was a UPS supervisor       state prison for attempted murder, shot
     as well as an army veteran and former         Milan six times with a .40 caliber semi-
     EMS medic. In preparation for their night     automatic pistol after Milan entered the
     out, Mrs. Milan went shopping with her        bodega. In an attempt to escape the con-
     disabled mother, while Mr. Milan stopped      tinuing gunfire, Milan ran from the store
     in at a bodega near his home before taking    and collapsed in front of a church. Milan
     his son to get a haircut. Because of Miguel   died later that day at Lincoln Hospital.

Annual Report 2002                                                                                11
 A Deadly Case of Mistaken Identity

           After the killing, Rivera changed his   offered to show that this could have been
     clothes and hid the weapon at a friend’s      Milan’s intent. Police believe that Rivera
     apartment. He then fled to Florida. Rivera    was responsible for violence in the area
     was arrested in September 2001 after          and he was known to “shake-down” other
     returning to the Bronx. At his trial, the     drug dealers in the area. Rivera was found
     jury heard testimony that Rivera admitted     guilty on December 13, 2002, of murder
     shooting Milan because he believed that       in the second degree “in a manner evinc-
     Milan, who was merely an innocent             ing a depraved indifference to human life.”
     bystander, had walked into the bodega         Rivera was sentenced to 24 ½ years-to-life
     intending to kill him. No evidence was        imprisonment. !

 Fiend Gets Life Without Parole

                                                   Olinville Avenue home. Friends designed
           On May 8, 2001, Tamiqua                 posters that read, “We will always love
     Gutierrez knocked on the apartment door       you” and “We miss you on the block.”
     of her neighbor, Clarence Moss, because       Relatives came from as far away as Puerto
     she wanted to play with his grandson.         Rico to mourn Tamiqua’s death.
     Moss, a 43-year-old maintenance man                 On May 30, 2001, a grand jury
     with a criminal record that dates back to     indicted Moss on nine counts, including
     1977, invited the 11-year-old inside and      murder in the first degree. On
     raped, sodomized and strangled the little     September 20, 2002, after two and a half
     girl. Then, on the way to the roof, he        days of deliberations, a jury found him
     dropped her body in a stairwell, to be        guilty of murder in the first degree and
     found by her father.                          two counts of sexual abuse in the first
           A trail of vomit led from the stairs,   degree. The judge sentenced Moss to life
     along the landing, to the killer’s door.      imprisonment without the possibility of
     Vomit was also found on Moss’ pants and       parole. District Attorney Robert Johnson
     on a pillow case in his bedroom. DNA          called the sentence “well deserved” and
     analysis showed that the vomit came from      said the defendant will “never escape
     Tamiqua.                                      awareness of the horribly depraved and
           Mourners placed candles, flower bas-    violent acts that he committed against an
     kets and balloons near the slain child’s      innocent child.” !

12                                                                            Annual Report 2002
                                                DRUG CRIME

     Drug crime has decreased in recent years, both in the number of cases and as a percentage of prosecutions. In 1996
drug cases accounted for more than 65% of the Office’s felony-level defendants, while in 2002, just over half of Bronx
defendants were prosecuted on drug charges. Nevertheless, drug crime is still a very serious problem in the Bronx.

      Over the past 13 years com-        proportion than that for both New       drug charges were sentenced to state
bined, 58% of Bronx defendants con-      York State (53%) and the rest of New    prison, a higher proportion than that
victed on felony drug charges were       York City (52%). This year, 59% of      for both New York State (57%) and
sentenced to state prison, a higher      Bronx defendants convicted on felony    the rest of New York City (58%).

     State Prison Sentences
     Percentage of Narcotics Convictions from 1990-2002

          Bronx                                                                      57.6%

          New York State                                  52.5%

          Rest of the City                             51.6%

       40%                   45%                       50%                        55%                   60%
     Source: NYS Department of Criminal Justice Services

     Heroin dealers get life term
     Bronx Times Reporter, May 2-8, 2002

                                                                   “Scarface,” “Drama” and “Rhumba.”
              On December 8, 2000, police offi-                    These narcotics had an estimated street
       cers stopped a livery cab for speeding                      value of $46,000.
       near the intersection of Reservoir and                             On April 24, 2002, a jury found
       Claflin Avenues in the Bronx. As the two                    both defendants guilty of criminal pos-
       officers approached the car, they noticed                   session of a controlled substance in the
       that a passenger, 28-year-old Hector                        first degree, a class A-1 felony. On May
       Figueroa, was pushing something with his                    14, 2002, Caba, who had multiple prior
       leg, trying to get it under the driver’s seat               convictions, was sentenced to a term of
       of the cab. The police instructed Figueroa                  17 years-to-life in prison. Figueroa,
       and his fellow passenger, 41-year-old Jose                  whose more extensive criminal record
       Caba, to get out of the car. A subsequent                   includes felony convictions for selling
       search of the car revealed that the pack-                   narcotics and assault, was sentenced to
       age pushed under the seat contained                         life imprisonment on the same date. He
       4,598 glassine envelopes of heroin                          must serve at least 23 years before being
       stamped with such brand names as                            eligible for parole. !

Annual Report 2002                                                                                              13
     Heroin Ring Shut Down

                                                         On April 5, 2002, a search warrant
           Between January and April 2002,         was executed at the home of 29-year-old
     the New York City Police Department           Juan Quesada. Although he was not home
     and the Bronx District Attorney’s Office      at the time, police recovered more than
     jointly conducted an undercover narcotics     half a kilogram of heroin with a street val-
     investigation into the large-scale sale of    ue over $80,000, along with packaging
     crack cocaine and heroin in a neighbor-       equipment. Quesada went into hiding, but
     hood near the Tremont section of the          he was found and arrested more than four
     Bronx. On six separate occasions, under-      months later. On August 14, 2002,
     cover police officers purchased over          Quesada pleaded guilty to criminal posses-
     $15,000 of heroin and cocaine from a          sion of a controlled substance in the third
     well-organized operation that stored and      degree, and on September 4, he was sen-
     packaged the narcotics in at least two sep-   tenced to 3 1/3-to-10 years imprisonment.
     arate locations. Each transaction involved    Seven other defendants were also involved
     between 300 and 900 glassine envelopes        in the transactions and all pleaded guilty to
     of heroin. Several of the purchases were      felony narcotics charges. Sentences for the
     videotaped from a surveillance van.           six defendants who have been sentenced
     Telephone calls setting up the sales were     range from five years of felony probation
     also tape recorded.                           to 4 1/2 years-to-life in state prison. !

14                                                                              Annual Report 2002
                                                 HATE CRIME

      Just after midnight on October 8, 2000, New York State’s Hate Crimes Statute went into effect. This was also
the eve of Yom Kippur, the holiest Jewish holiday. The new law provides for increased penalties for crimes motivated
by bias or hate. Within hours of the law’s taking effect, a crime occurred in the Riverdale section of the Bronx which
was the state’s first violation of the new statute. Two years of prosecutorial efforts resulted in convictions in 2002.

                                     Daily News 10-2-2000

                              Daily News 2-27-2003
                                                                                  NY Times 10-12-2000

                            Riverdale Press 10-19-2000                             Newsday 10-19-2000

                                                            Riverdale Press 4-4-2002

                                                                                         New York Post 12-13-2002
                                                  Riverdale Press 4-25-2002

                                                                       ing. These molotov cocktails damaged the
             Twenty-three-year-old Mazin Assi                          front door of the synagogue. Two addi-
       and 18-year-old Mohammed Alfaqih pur-                           tional people were arrested with Assi and
       chased several bottles of 160 proof vodka                       Alfaqih. One defendant’s case was handled
       on the evening of October 7, 2000. Later                        in Family Court because he was 15 years
       that evening, Assi and Alfaqih attempted                        old, and there was not enough evidence to
       to set fire to the Conservative Synagogue                       prosecute the other.
       Adath Israel of Riverdale by lighting and                             A police sergeant and his partner
       throwing one incendiary device at the                           from the 50th Precinct remembered seeing
       building and placing a second incendiary                        a red Honda Civic near the synagogue on
       device at the main entrance of the build-                       the night of the crime. They also remem-

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                  15
     “Hate crimes law to make debut in attack on Bronx synagogue”
     Daily News, October 20, 2000 continued

     bered entering the Honda’s license plate              dent had rekindled painful memories
     number into their computer to determine               among many in the community of other
     whether the car had been reported stolen              events in Jewish history.
     (it had not). Police traced the car and bot-                 Assi was sentenced to the maxi-
     tles of vodka found at the scene of the               mum term of 5-to-15 years imprison-
     crime to the defendants.                              ment on the arson charge. Attempted
            Alfaqih and Assi, both of whom                 arson in the third degree ordinarily car-
     lived in Yonkers, were tried simultaneouly            ries a maximum sentence of up to seven
     by separate juries. The trial lasted three            years imprisonment. However, as a hate
     months, and on December 12, 2002, after               crime the maximum sentence is 15 years
     one day of deliberations, Assi was con-               imprisonment. Assi also received con-
     victed of attempted arson in the third                current sentences of 2 1/3 -to-7 years
     degree as a hate crime, criminal mischief             imprisonment on the criminal mischief
     in the third degree as a hate crime, crimi-           and weapons possession charges and 1 1/3-
     nal possession of a weapon in the third               to-4 years on the charge of aggravated
     degree and aggravated harassment in the               harassment. Assi must serve at least five
     first degree. On December 16, 2002,                   years in prison before being eligible for
     after four days of deliberations, Alfaqih             parole.
     was convicted of criminal mischief in the                   District Attorney Robert Johnson
     third degree.                                         responded to the convictions by saying,
            Evidence at the trial showed that              “This case concerns more than an
     Alfaqih’s stated motive was hatred of Jews            assault on the Conservative Synagogue
     in general. Alfaqih was sentenced to up to            Adath Israel of Riverdale on the eve of
     four years imprisonment, the maximum                  Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the
     sentence allowed by law. He will not be eli-          Jewish year. This case was vigorously
     gible for parole for 16 months. The judge             prosecuted for the protection of Jews,
     told Alfaqih that his crime had caused divi-          Arabs, and all citizens of Bronx County.
     siveness and had deepened a wedge                     No one should have his or her personal
     between the Arab and Jewish communities.              safety or property jeopardized because
     In a pre-sentencing victim impact state-              of their race, religion, gender, ancestry
     ment, Rabbi Barry Dov Katz said the inci-             or sexual orientation.” !

16                                                                                   Annual Report 2002
                Partnerships and Collaboration
BRONX MENTAL HEALTH COURT                sion and sanctions for failure to        with committing specific crimes,
                                         complete treatment as other divert-      have no prior felony convictions and
      The Bronx District Attorney’s      ed defendants.                           no prior convictions for violent
Office has been diverting defen-                                                  crimes. BXTC defendants plead
dants to drug treatment for many         BRONX TREATMENT COURT                    guilty to a felony charge with
years. Over time it became clear                                                  deferred sentence and immediately
that some of these defendants were             Since 1999, the Bronx              enter treatment. Defendants who
suffering from both drug dependen-       Treatment Court (BXTC) has pro-          successfully complete the 12-18
cy and mental illness. Staff always      vided substance abuse treatment          month treatment program have
tried to place such defendants in        under close judicial supervision to      their felony charges dismissed or
treatment programs that were             felony narcotics offenders as an         reduced to a misdemeanor.
appropriate for persons with dual        alternative to incarceration (ATI).      Participants who fail to complete
diagnoses. In 2002 this Office           BXTC, like the national drug court       treatment are sentenced to a state
entered into a formal partnership        model, includes swift defendant          prison term of two-to-six years.
with Treatment Alternatives to           assessment and placement in treat-              In 2002, 160 clients were enrolled
Street Crime (TASC) and Research         ment, close judicial supervision of      in treatment programs through the
Triangle Institute to create the         offenders, urinalysis and graduated      Bronx Treatment Court. A total of 817
Bronx Mental Health Court. Using         sanctions and incentives. The Bronx      clients were enrolled from its inception
federal funds to provide mental          Treatment Court is a collaborative       in March 1999 through the end of
health and drug dependence screen-       effort of representatives from the       2002. In addition, this past year almost
ing and assessment, placement and        Office of Court Administration, the      700 Bronx defendants who were not eli-
program evaluation, staff recom-         Bronx District Attorney’s Office, the    gible for BXTC were diverted through
mended 98 defendants for place-          Bronx defense bar and drug treat-        other treatment programs. Since 1993,
ment in 2002. These defendants are       ment providers. Defendants must be       this Office has placed a total of 7,299
subject to the same level of supervi-    19 years of age or older, charged        defendants in treatment programs.

    Drug Treatment Enrollment*
    1993 – 2002
      PROGRAMS         93      94        95      96      97      98       99       00       01      02    TOTAL
      DTAP            N/A     N/A       N/A    N/A      N/A      26      316      488      481     287      1,598
      BXTC            N/A     N/A       N/A    N/A      N/A     N/A      285      204      168     160        817
      Willard         N/A     N/A       N/A    N/A      N/A     N/A      N/A       57       32      37        126
      Health Court    N/A     N/A       N/A    N/A      N/A     N/A      N/A      N/A      N/A      98          98
      Residential      64      24        90    287      548     883      313      477      416     151      3,253
      Other            89     205       158    168       15     162      210      152      134     114      1,407
      TOTAL           153     229       248    455      563   1,071    1,124     1,378   1,231     847      7,299

    S o u r c e : O ff i c e o f B r o n x D i s t r i c t A t t o r n e y

         *Note: Drug Treatment Alternatives to Prison (DTAP) is for predicate (second and later)
    offenders. Extended Willard Drug Treatment is also for predicate offenders and is operated by the
    New York State Department of Correctional Services in conjunction with the Division of Parole.
    “Other Residential” includes first-time offenders placed in residential programs. “Other” includes
    residential and outpatient programs for first-time and predicate defendants.

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                   7
      One man’s odyssey from drug use to drug free

                                                                   cessfully completed the treatment pro-
              Forty-one-year-old Jason (pseudo-                    gram, Jason’s charge was reduced to a
       nym) has a criminal history dating back at                  misdemeanor and he received a condi-
       least to 1987. Many of his arrests were on                  tional discharge.
       drug-related charges. On March 16, 2001,                          Upon graduation from the treat-
       Jason was arrested for selling drugs to an                  ment program, Jason wrote about how
       undercover police officer. Ten days later he                treatment changed his life and reordered
       pleaded guilty to criminal sale of a con-                   his priorities. He talked about how he
       trolled substance in the third degree. As a                 was given everything he needed to “stay
       predicate felon, Jason was eligible for treat-              clean” and how he regained his sanity.
       ment through the Drug Treatment                             After graduation, Jason entered an after-
       Alternatives to Prison (DTAP) program.                      care program that requires him to attend
       He was placed in Odyssey House, a resi-                     weekly group therapy and individual
       dential treatment center for people with                    therapy sessions. Tests for drugs have pro-
       substance abuse problems.                                   duced drug-free results. He is currently
              Despite his past struggles with sub-                 working as a floor representative for a
       stance abuse, Jason’s record in treatment                   company on Long Island, and he attrib-
       was exemplary. His quarterly case confer-                   utes much of his current success to
       ences revealed good progress reports, and                   Odyssey House. He has been able to
       Jason completed treatment in just under                     obtain permanent housing and lives in his
       two years in the program. Because he suc-                   own apartment. !

OPERATION WEED & SEED                          Each site involves cooperation     South Bronx Overall Economic
                                         by the District Attorney’s Office, the   Development Cor poration
       Weed and Seed is a federally-     U.S. Attorney for the Southern           (SOBRO) and involves collabora-
funded strategy designed to “weed        District of New York, the NYPD,          tion with the NYC Departments of
out” drug traffickers and violent        other local, state and federal law       Sanitation and Parks and
gangs while “seeding” the commu-         enforcement agencies and the New         Recreation, Better Bronx for Youth
nity with federal, state and local       Yo r k C i t y D e p a r t m e n t o f   and St. Ann’s Church.
resources to improve the quality of      Education. Operation Weed and                  In July 2002, through a feder-
life. This effort combines federal       Seed/Soundview also relies on a          ally-funded grant, this office imple-
and local resources to identify, tar-    close working relationship with the      mented a community prosecution
get, arrest and prosecute narcotics      Bronx Borough President’s Office,        program that linked the two Weed
traffickers, gang members and rob-       the Bronx YMCA, Kips Bay Boys            and Seed sites. The linkage was
bery perpetrators in the Weed and        and Girls Club, Pathways for Youth,      achieved by forming Law
Seed area. The Bronx is home to          the Bronx Lions Club, school-based       Enforcement Advisory Committees
two Weed and Seed sites, one locat-      parent organizations, other commu-       (LEACs), comprised of community
ed in the Soundview/ Bruckner/           nity-based organizations and com-        members who live in the Weed and
Castle Hill neighborhood and the         munity residents. Operation Weed         Seed neighborhoods. The Citizens
other in Mott Haven.                     and Seed/Mott Haven is led by the        Committee for New York City will

 18                                                                                            Annual Report 2002
provide customized leadership             children and adults are offered. In            This Office’s collaborative
training for LEAC members and             the Bronx these include recreational     efforts are not limited to these two
the NYPD Citizens Police Academy          programs such as Junior Knicks bas-      neighborhoods, however, and
will provide training regarding law       ketball, mentoring programs and          include working closely with the
enforcement. Once trained, LEAC           crime prevention through the arts.       court monitors programs in the
members will collaborate with the         Many of the individual programs          50th and the 47th Precincts. In
District Attorney’s Office to solve       rely on linkages with other organiza-    addition, Office representatives
problems within the community.            tions, including the Police Athletic     participate in each of the Bronx
      All Weed and Seed sites have        League, Bronx Council on the Arts        precinct community councils.
“Safe Havens” where programs for          and Hostos Community College.

INTEGRATED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE              es, in different courts, would have      to enable Sanctuary for Families, a
PART                                      proceeded completely independent-        non-profit organization dedicated to
                                          ly. Now both cases are sent to the       meeting the needs of victims of
      A new court part opened in          Integrated Domestic Violence Part        domestic violence, to provide legal
Bronx Criminal Court on October           for adjudication and heard by one        and other services to crime victims.
22, 2001. This new part is a com-         judge, who is aware of the circum-             The following cases illustrate
bined Criminal Court and Family           stances surrounding both cases.          two different ways in which the IDV
Court Part, the first in the state and          In October 2002, Bronx             part resolved cases. The cases show
the only such part in the City. The       Borough President Adolfo Carrion, in     how placing related matters before a
underlying rationale recognizes that      collaboration with the Office of the     single judge facilitates the identifica-
domestic violence often involves not      Bronx District Attorney and              tion and resolution of family matters.
only criminal matters but other fam-      Sanctuary for Families, received grant   In the first case, a wife needed pro-
ily matters. For example, a woman         funding from the U.S. Department of      tection from a husband who was
who has been assaulted by her hus-        Justice’s Violence Against Women         threatening her. In the second case,
band may obtain a “full stay away”        Office. With resources from this         which involved children, the solution
order of protection. If the couple        grant, the Borough President’s Office    did not require a Criminal Court
has children together and the father      has formed an advisory committee         conviction. In some cases Criminal
wants to see the children, he must        that will initiate domestic violence     Court convictions may not be the
go to Family Court to obtain visita-      awareness projects. Grant funds are      most desirable outcome.
tion rights. In the past these two cas-   also used to staff the court part, and
      Guilty Plea Obtained In IDV Court Part

                                                                    one month the case was sent to the
             In October 2001 Jane filed a Family                    Integrated Domestic Violence (IDV) court
       Court case against her husband, 37-year-                     part. John pleaded guilty to the misde-
       old John (pseudonyms), alleging abuse.                       meanor charge of criminal possession of
       Jane was granted a temporary order of                        a weapon in the fourth degree. In
       protection. In November 2001 John men-                       exchange for his plea, the Department of
       aced Jane with a gun and was arrested for                    Probation would monitor John and his
       violating the order of protection. Within                    wife would be given an order of protec-

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                  19
      Guilty Plea Obtained In IDV Court Part

       tion requiring that he stay away from her                  case was sent to the IDV part because his
       for three years. Because she received a                    prior case had been resolved there. The
       three-year order of protection on the                      IDV judge deciding the case was already
       Criminal Court case, Jane agreed to dis-                   familiar with the parties and their history.
       miss the Family Court case.                                Within one month in the IDV part, John
             Seven months later, on June 14,                      pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge
       2002, John violated the Criminal Court                     of criminal contempt in the second degree
       order of protection by going to Jane’s                     and received a sentence of six months in
       workplace and threatening her with a                       jail. His wife was given a new three-year
       knife. He was arrested again, and this new                 order of protection. !

      The Same Court Part, But a Different Outcome

                                                                  she did want an order of protection. In
             In September 2001 Maria obtained a                   November 2002, with Maria’s consent,
       temporary order of protection from                         the criminal contempt case against Jeff
       Family Court against her 33-year-old,                      was dismissed. In January 2003 Jeff filed a
       common-law husband, Jeff (pseudonyms).                     request in the IDV part for visitation with
       The order of protection required that Jeff                 his children. By the end of the month, the
       stay away from Maria. In July 2002 Jeff                    parties had worked out a consent agree-
       went to Maria’s house and verbally                         ment for visitation.
       harassed her. Jeff was angry because he                          Jeff had never been arrested
       wanted to see their children.                              before this incident and has not been
             Jeff was arrested for criminal con-                  arrested since. While the criminal case
       tempt in the second degree. Both the                       did not result in a conviction, the arrest
       Family Court case and the Criminal                         did lead to a resolution of important
       Court case were sent to the IDV part.                      family matters. !
       Maria did not want Jeff to go to jail, but

URBAN HIGH CRIME                       the South Bronx, is generally conve-      tive project to bring services closer to
NEIGHBORHOOD INITIATIVE                nient because of its proximity to the     victims in Community District 12.
                                       courts. But for some crime vic-           Under this Urban High Crime
      The Bronx District Attorney’s    tims who reside in the northern           Neighborhood Initiative, the District
Crime Victims Assistance Unit          end of the county, transportation         Attorney’s Office will work with repre-
(CVAU) provides comprehensive          is a problem.                             sentatives from law enforcement,
services to crime victims. The loca-         In September 2002, this Office      schools, hospitals, faith-based organiza-
tion of the unit, in the District      received a one-year planning grant from   tions, local media, local government,
Attorney’s Office on 161st Street in   the federal government for an innova-     youth services, child welfare and com-

 20                                                                                             Annual Report 2002
munity-based organizations to identify      in collaboration with the District                    Although the specific services
the needs of the community and devel-       Attorney’s staff, will develop and             and location have yet to be deter-
op an implementation plan to provide        conduct a needs assessment to                  mined, the initial plan is to open a
services in the community.                  determine the best use of limited              satellite office that will provide ser-
      The Project Director (who is          resources during the implementa-               vices similar to those offered at the
the CVAU Director) has assem-               tion phase of the project.                     District Attorney’s Office. The
bled an Advisory Committee com-             Assessment results will guide the              Advisory Committee is currently
posed of representatives from these         project by tailoring the type of               developing a referral network link-
organizations and from the com-             services and the logistics of                  ing service providers in the commu-
munity at large. The Advisory               their delivery to the needs of                 nity for those services that cannot
Committee meets regularly and,              the community.                                 be provided by CVAU staff.

BRONX DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S                   related criminal activity encourages           Major Case/ Housing Task Force,
GANG INITIATIVE                             communication and coordination of              Criminal Court, Grand Jury/Evaluation,
                                            prosecutorial efforts. A liaison with the      Trial Division, and Domestic
       Despite the decline in violent       NYC Department of Correction pro-              Violence/Sex Offense. The Office’s
crime in 2002, shooting incidents in the    vides further gang intelligence.               Detective Squad and Detective
Bronx increased nearly 15% over 2001.              Gang Initiative meetings are led by     Investigators also participate in the
In response to the growing violence, this   a member of the District Attorney’s            Initiative. A computer program is used to
Office launched a Gang Initiative that      executive staff and by an assistant district   collect information on gang-related inci-
brings representatives of bureaus           attorney who is the Office’s Director of       dents and defendants. The Gang
throughout the Office together through      Gang Prosecutions. Gang-related cases          Initiative provides mechanisms to coordi-
periodic meetings to discuss cases and      may be prosecuted by assistants of the         nate a response to gang-related crime in
strategies. Intelligence is shared across   various bureaus that participate in the        the Bronx.
office divisions. This approach to gang-    Gang Initiative, such as Narcotics, Rackets,

       The Adams Place Boys

                                                                           activity on Adams Place. This investiga-
              Beginning in 1996, the NYPD                                  tion identified the individuals responsible
        received numerous complaints and made                              for the majority of the crimes committed
        numerous arrests on Adams Place, a                                 within this target area, who proved to be
        block in the Bronx composed of residen-                            members of a group who called them-
        tial buildings, private homes and a house                          selves the “Adams Boys.” Their leader was
        of worship. The majority of the com-                               25-year-old Pablo (pseudonym).
        plaints were directly related to the sale                                The Adams Boys operated a prof-
        of narcotics.                                                      itable and sophisticated narcotics business
              In 2001 the Bronx District                                   which produced an estimated $10,000 in
        Attorney’s Gang Unit and the NYPD’s                                weekly profits. The Adams Boys processed
        48th Precinct and Bronx Narcotics initiat-                         and sold crack cocaine mostly in white or
        ed a joint investigation into narcotics                            green bags for $5 or $10 to street cus-

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                           21
       The Adams Place Boys

         tomers. They used violence and threats of                                    common-law wife was also subsequently
         violence to protect their interests and turf.                                arrested for endangering the welfare of
         They provided legal representation and                                       a child because of the presence of
         bail money when gang members were                                            loaded weapons and drug paraphernalia
         arrested. Managers distributed the crack                                     in the home with young children.
         and collected payments.                                                             These two arrests led to a historical
                Police initiated a sting operation                                    conspiracy prosecution case that success-
         when an informant provided informa-                                          fully shut down this narcotics trafficking
         tion about the gang and explained that                                       operation. A historical conspiracy case
         his life was at risk. Pablo was arrested                                     allows the prosecution to introduce evi-
         when he arrived for a meeting with the                                       dence of past crime (in this case from
         informant at a local restaurant, armed                                       January 1996 to June 2002) to establish a
         with two semi-automatic handguns, a                                          continuing course of conduct. In June
         .45 Caliber Sig Sauer and a .40 Caliber                                      2002 a 50-count indictment was brought
         Glock. Subsequent ballistics tests                                           against seven defendants. This was the first
         revealed that these same guns had been                                       use of such a historical conspiracy case in
         used in three attempted murders of                                           Bronx County. The charges included such
         rival drug dealers. During the course of                                     crimes as attempted murder, gun posses-
         this arrest, a search warrant was                                            sion, narcotics trafficking and conspiracy.
         obtained for Pablo’s apartment. The                                                 Two street-level “pitchers” have
         execution of the search warrant pro-                                         pleaded guilty to conspiracy in the fourth
         duced two additional semi-automatic                                          degree. Cases against the other defendants
         handguns, a large amount of ammuni-                                          are still pending. Narcotics activity on the
         tion and drug paraphernalia. Pablo’s                                         block has abated. !

AUTO CRIME INITIATIVES                                Decline In Grand Larceny Auto
                                                      1990 - 2002
       The Office of the Bronx District              25,000   22,946
                                                     23,000            20,567                                                Auto Theft in the Bronx has
Attorney has operated the Bronx Anti-                21,000                                                                   declined 77% since 1990.
Auto Theft Program since 1995. The pro-              19,000                 17,711
                                                     17,000                          15,643
gram, which has been supported with                  15,000                                   14,249
resources provided by yearly grants from             13,000                                            10,875
                                                     11,000                                                     9,607
New York State, was designed to increase              9,000                                                             8,151
                                                                                                                                 7,170 6,968 6,671
                                                      7,000                                                                                          5,528 5,207
the number of successful prosecutions of              5,000
defendants charged with grand larceny of                      90   91      92    93       94      95       96           97      98    99   00        01   02
                                                      Source: New York City Police Department
a motor vehicle, criminal possession of
stolen property, illegal possession of a vehi-   185 vehicles, with a total value of more                       expansion was made possible through a
cle identification number, auto stripping        than $3.3 million. In the last few years, the                  grant from the New York State Motor
and/or unauthorized use of a vehicle. It         program has been expanded to include                           Vehicle Theft and Insurance Fraud
was also expected to result in an increased      document and insurance fraud.                                  Prevention Board, which provides funds
number of stolen cars recovered pursuant               In 1999 the effort was expanded to                       for equipment that enables detectives to
to arrests made and/or search warrants           include night-time surveillance and investi-                   conduct surveillance operations at night
executed. In 2002 detectives recovered           gations of auto-related crimes. This                           (or in other low-light conditions).

 22                                                                                                                                   Annual Report 2002
      He Says He’s Homeless but Drives a 2000 BMW 740i

                                                                  and that he could be charged with giv-
             A silver 2000 BMW 740i, valued at                    ing the officer false information. The
       $38,000, was stolen from the 13th                          25-year-old Mr. Davis then told the offi-
       Precinct in Manhattan on May 3, 2002.                      cer that his name was Ron Stewart, he
       Two months later, on July 11th, an officer                 knew the car was stolen, and he had
       from the 49th Precinct in the Bronx                        bought it for $200.
       observed a double-parked, silver BMW,                            Davis/Stewart was arrested and
       ran the license plate, and determined the                  charged with criminal possession of stolen
       car had been stolen. As the officer                        property and other felony charges. He had
       watched, two individuals entered the car                   a history of arrests involving cars and had
       and drove away.                                            already served time in state prison. On
             When the officer stopped the car,                    July 18th, Davis/Stewart pleaded guilty to
       the driver said the car was not stolen,                    criminal possession of stolen property. He
       and belonged to his mother. He also                        was sentenced to serve three years in
       said he was homeless and his name was                      prison and must serve at least 18 months
       David Davis. The officer told Mr. Davis                    before he will be eligible for parole. !
       that the car had indeed been stolen,

ELDER ABUSE                             These conditions make the criminal       educating the community. The
                                        justice system more difficult to         Coordinator, who improves services
      “Elder abuse” can take many       negotiate and increase the trauma        to victims while facilitating the legal
forms, including neglect or abuse of    of victimization.                        process, is the first point of contact
a physical, financial, psychological,         In 2000 the District Attorney      for elder abuse victims referred to
emotional or sexual nature.             hired an Elder Abuse Coordinator to      the Office. In 2002 the Coordinator
Although anyone can be a victim of      serve as a liaison among the bureaus     handled over 200 calls regarding
crime, age may render victims phys-     and units of the Office, obtain ser-     suspected elder abuse and neglect.
ically weak, physically or emotional-   vices from outside agencies for elder-
ly isolated or mentally disabled.       ly victims and serve as a resource for

      Elder Abuse in a Family

                                                                  Millan had broken his mother’s nose.
             Twenty-nine-year-old Julian Millan                         Lillian felt bad about pressing
       lived with his 70-year-old mother, Lillian                 charges, but she wanted her son to get
       (pseudonym). For 13 months between                         help. A concerned neighbor assisted
       February 2001 and March 2002, Millan                       Lillian by bringing her to the District
       demanded approximately $100 per month                      Attorney’s Office.
       from Lillian. These demands occurred                             On April 5, 2002, Millan pleaded
       after Lillian cashed her SSI benefit checks.               guilty to the misdemeanor crime of crimi-
       There was a history of domestic violence                   nal contempt in the second degree. He
       in the relationship; on a prior occasion                   was sentenced on June 6 to a conditional

Annual Report 2002                                                                                               23
       Elder Abuse in a Family

        discharge and placement in a program to                             essary therapeutic remedy for this family.
        treat mental health and drug dependency                             The resolution to the case provided the
        problems. In addition, a full permanent                             protection Lillian needed, and she was
        order of protection was issued to prevent                           able to make connections with social ser-
        continuation of the abuse.                                          vice agencies. Millan received the inpatient
              This case illustrates how the criminal                        residential rehabilitation he needed. !
        justice system ultimately provided the nec-

       Financial Elder Abuse

                                                                            ship, also co-signed a loan for the purchase of
              Between approximately May 1, 2001,                            a $53,628 General Motors sport utility vehicle
        and February 18, 2002, twenty-nine-year-                            by forging Verona’s name on a loan applica-
        old Raquel Sanchez fraudulently used the                            tion and insurance papers.
        personal and credit information of both                                    On July 25, 2002, Sanchez pleaded
        her mother-in-law, Janet, and an elderly,                           guilty to three counts of grand larceny in
        retired school teacher, Verona (pseudo-                             the third degree and one count of forgery
        nyms). Both Janet and Verona were in                                in the second degree. On September 5,
        their seventies. Sanchez met and befriend-                          2002, Sanchez was sentenced to five years
        ed Verona while buying Lotto tickets.                               probation with the special condition that
        Sanchez submitted credit card applications                          she receive court-ordered psychiatric inter-
        and received and used credit cards in the                           vention monitored by the Department of
        names of both Verona and Janet without                              Probation. In addition, permanent orders
        their knowledge or permission. Using oth-                           of protection were issued against Sanchez
        er people’s good credit, Sanchez racked up                          in favor of Verona and Janet. Finally,
        more than $40,000 in American Express,                              Court Orders of Restitution by Civil
        Mastercard and Optima credit card pur-                              Judgment were issued for each of the cred-
        chases on fraudulently opened accounts.                             it card companies in the amounts charged
              Sanchez, who worked at a car dealer-                          by the defendant. !

       In 1998 the Bronx District              outgrowth of this committee, an Elder        Hebrew Home for the Aged at Riverdale;
Attorney formed an elder abuse commit-         Abuse Multidisciplinary Task Force was       and the Bronx Borough Director of Adult
tee to develop strategies to enhance prose-    created in 2002. The complexities of         Protective Services. This bimonthly gath-
cution in elder abuse cases and to increase    elder mistreatment and neglect necessitate   ering of law enforcement, social service,
the coordination of services to elderly vic-   a comprehensive, multidisciplinary           healthcare, financial, business, govern-
tims. The committee is comprised of staff      approach. The Task Force is co-chaired       mental and private agencies enables the
from the Arson/Economic Crime                  by the Elder Abuse Coordinator at the        sharing of expertise and facilitates the
Bureau, Domestic Violence/Sex Offense          Bronx District Attorney’s Office; the        coordination of efforts to prevent, investi-
Bureau, the Community Affairs Unit and         Assistant Director of ElderServe, the        gate and remedy the abuse of our most
the Crime Victims Assistance Unit. As an       Community Services Division of the           vulnerable seniors.

 24                                                                                                         Annual Report 2002

        Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN)
was introduced in January 2002 as a
national strategy designed to reduce gun
violence in America through the combined
efforts of local police and prosecutors, the
U.S. Attorney’s Office and the federal
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
(ATF). Under this grant program, the
Bronx District Attorney is collaborating
with the U.S. Attorney for the Southern
District of New York to reduce the number
of illegal guns on the streets of the Bronx.       Joint District Attorney - Federal Investigations Result in
                                                   Gun Seizures and Prosecution of Traffickers
        As part of this effort, defendants
charged with either illegal sale or posses-     obtain information that will form the basis   effort is further enhanced with state fund-
sion of guns are interviewed. A Detective       for long-term investigations of weapons       ing, which provides resources to conduct
Investigator and an assistant district attor-   trafficking and the issuance of search war-   complex sting operations and purchase
ney debrief such defendants in an effort to     rants for the seizure of weapons. This        illegal guns.
       Long-Term Investigation Stops Gun Smugglers

                                                                              Although the guns were seized for suspected
              A recent long-term gun investigation                            firearms trafficking, the defendants were
       resulted in the arrest of three defendants and                         released because in New Mexico the possession
       prevented additional guns from being brought                           of even 31 guns is not against the law. Two
       into the Bronx. The investigation began when                           days later, on March 5, 2002, the remaining
       an undercover detective from the Firearms                              two guns were sold to the undercover detective
       Investigations Unit of the New York City Police                        in the Bronx. The investigation widened from
       Department learned of an individual’s interest in                      gun trafficking to drug dealing on March 15,
       selling guns. In December 2001 the detective                           2002, when the undercover bought 28 pills of
       bought a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol for                         the drug ecstasy from Wauchope. That same
       $1,350 from Naashan Wauchope, who was                                  day, all three defendants were arrested.
       handed the gun by Sean (pseudonym) immedi-                                   On April 4, 2002, Collins pleaded
       ately prior to the sale. Over the next two                             guilty to attempted criminal sale of a
       months, the undercover bought 25 guns in five                          firearm in the third degree. This arrest was
       separate transactions for a total of $10,100.                          Collins’ first offense. On May 22, 2002, she
              In late February 2002 the three defen-                          received a sentence of six months in jail and
       dants traveled to Arizona where they rented a                          five years of intensive supervised probation.
       minivan. One of the trio, 27-year-old Latoya                           Wauchope and Sean, who were 23- and 27-
       Collins, obtained an Arizona state ID card                             years-old at the time of the illegal gun
       using a false address. She then purchased thir-                        transactions, were charged with criminal
       ty-three .22 caliber semi-automatic pistols from                       sale of a firearm in the first degree, a class
       two gun shops in the Phoenix area. On March                            B felony. Wauchope subsequently pleaded
       3, 2002, the three defendants were stopped by                          guilty to eight counts of gun trafficking and
       a New Mexico State Police Officer for speed-                           one charge of drug posession. He faces a
       ing. A search of the vehicle produced 31 of the                        sentence of 12 years in prison. Sean is
       33 guns Collins had purchased in Arizona.                              awaiting trial. !

Annual Report 2002                                                                                                               25
      In its efforts to eradicate gun        mary benefit of this multidiscipli-      to acquire a wealth of informa-
violence, this Office will continue          nary approach is the minimization        tion without ever having to leave
to cooperate with the U.S.                   of system-induced trauma to the          their homes. Unfortunately, how-
Attorney to determine whether a              victim. The Multidisciplinary            ever, the availability of this tech-
particular case is best prosecuted           Team assists hospital personnel in       nology may also give sexual
i n s t at e o r f e d e r a l c o u r t .   identifying and treating victims of      predators access to our children.
Defendants with prior domestic               child abuse, and acts as a network       According to the U.S. Census
violence convictions can be prose-           for further referrals.                   2000, there are close to 400,000
cuted federally. Defendants who                    This team approach affords a       Bronx residents who are under
are over the age of 18 and either            number of benefits. First, it            the age of 18. Many of them use
have entered the country illegally           enhances the quality of evidence         computers daily.
or have a prior felony conviction            available to all participants by               In 2001 this Office received a
are eligible for federal prosecution         affording them the opportunity to        federal grant to establish an
in gun cases. Furthermore, if a              be present to ask questions at the       Internet Crimes Against Children
gun has been defaced to thwart its           victim’s first interview. Second, it     (ICAC) Investigative Satellite ini-
identification, the defendant can            minimizes the additional trauma to       tiative. Through this program,
be prosecuted federally even with-           the victim who, if subjected to          detectives and assistant district
out a prior conviction. Under                repeated interviews, must revisit        attorneys have developed excellent
these conditions, when convicted             incidents that may have been emo-        contacts in the law enforcement
in federal court, gun violators              tionally devastating. Third, it avoids   community with whom they share
receive stiffer prison sentences             problems associated with having          ideas and expertise. The agencies
than they would for the same con-            victims repeat their stories, such as    include the New York State ICAC
viction in state court.                      details forgotten or inadvertently       Task Force, New York Attorney
                                             omitted, and having victims              General,        numerous       District
MULTIDISCIPLINARY TEAM ON                    becoming tired and uncooperative.        Attorneys’ Offices, the New York
CHILD PHYSICAL AND SEXUAL                    In 2002, members of the                  State District Attor neys
ABUSE                                        Multidisciplinary Team reviewed          Association, U.S. Customs, the
                                             over 1,500 cases and conducted           Federal Bureau of Investigation
      The Multidisciplinary Team             approximately 250 joint interviews.      and the U.S. Secret Service. In
is a coalition of representatives            Through its participation in the         addition, members of the Satellite
from the Office of the Bronx                 Multidisciplinary Team, the Office       Task Force are members of numer-
District Attorney, Bronx hospitals,          has significantly improved its ability   o u s o t h e r Ta s k Fo r c e s a n d
mental health service providers,             to prosecute child abusers effective-    Committees dedicated to the inves-
school districts, the Administration         ly while addressing the needs of         tigation and prosecution of inter-
for Children Services, the New               child abuse victims.                     net crimes against children.
York City Corporation Counsel,                                                              As a result of this investiga-
the NYPD and the Juvenile Rights             INTERNET CRIMES AGAINST                  tive work, a number of defendants
Division of the Legal Aid Society.           CHILDREN                                 have been prosecuted for internet
Its purpose is to improve communi-                                                    crimes against Bronx children,
cation among participating agen-                  Ever-increasing access to           including the defendant in the
cies and coordinate their involve-           computers and the internet opens         case presented below.
ment in child abuse cases. The pri-          doors for both children and adults

 26                                                                                                 Annual Report 2002
      School guard guilty on perv rap
      New York Post, November 1, 2002

                                                                  meet her at her home. There he was arrest-
           On October 15, 2002, Ben                               ed and charged with attempted rape in the
     Auerbach, a 47-year-old School Safety                        second degree and attempted disseminating
     Officer, went to meet a 13-year-old girl at                  indecent materials to minors, both felonies.
     her home, expecting to have sexual rela-                     At the time of the arrest, Auerbach had
     tions with her. Instead, he met detectives                   four condoms in his possession.
     from the Bronx District Attorney’s Office                          On October 31st, Auerbach pleaded
     who arrested him.                                            guilty to one count of attempted dissemi-
           In late September 2002, using the                      nating indecent materials to minors. On
     screen name “Hotrod 1047,” Auerbach                          December 10th he was sentenced to serve
     began a series of Internet conversations                     six months jail followed by 4½ years proba-
     with someone he believed to be a 13-year-                    tion. In addition, Auerbach was required to
     old girl. But the girl he met in a chat room                 register as a level one sex offender.
     called “I Like Older Men” was really a                             The arrest and prosecution were the
     detective. After a number of conversations,                  result of an ongoing effort of the Bronx
     Auerbach told the “girl” he wanted to have                   District Attorney’s Internet Crimes
     sexual relations with her and described the                  Against Children Task Force Satellite
     specific sexual acts he would like to per-                   Initiative, which is funded by the US
     form. He proposed a date and arranged to                     Department of Justice.!

JOINT TRAINING PROGRAM       WITH       usually two patrol officers per         tion and statement evidence,
THE NYPD                                precinct and two Bronx Task Force       (2) Complaint Room Procedures,
                                        officers, plus officers from special-   (3) Domestic Violence Issues and (4)
      In January 2002 the Office        ized units and a Precinct Training      Case Preparation and Presentation.
launched the BXDA/NYPD Joint            Sergeant. The attorneys are from
Training Program. This is a             various prosecution bureaus and         COLLABORATION WITH THE
monthly program conducted in the        usually have one to two and one-        AMERICAN RED CROSS AND       THE
Litigation Training Unit of the         half years of experience.               MANHATTAN DISTRICT
Office of the Bronx District                  The purpose of the program        ATTORNEY’S OFFICE
Attorney. The faculty is comprised      is to educate and promote an open
of a group of experienced attor-        discussion on criminal law and                Following the tragedy of
neys designated to teach specific       procedural issues and to keep com-      September 11, 2001, the outpouring
topics. During each session approx-     munication open between the two         of both financial and emotional
imately 30 - 35 uniformed mem-          law enforcement agencies. This          support was uplifting to a grieving
bers of the New York City Police        will help both agencies to better       nation and city. Unfortunately, how-
Department are trained together         serve the public and the criminal       ever, some people tried to profit
with approximately ten assistant        justice system.                         from what they saw as easy money.
district attorneys.                           The basic core of program
      The experience level of the       topics is (1) New York Law, includ-
police and attorneys vary. There are    ing search and seizure, identifica-

Annual Report 2002                                                                                               27
     Trying to Profit from the Nation’s Tragedy

                                                  as she emerged from Bronx Supreme Court
       Early in 2002 the American Red Cross       Part A on May 7, 2002 following her
 contacted this Office for assistance with        arraignment on the Bronx charges.
 individuals cashing or attempting to cash              The detective took Pearson/Thomas
 disaster relief checks. In late February and     to Manhattan, where she was indicted for
 March 2002, eight individuals were arrested      applying for 9-11 World Trade Center dis-
 for cashing or attempting to cash counterfeit    aster relief. The basis for her application
 American Red Cross disaster relief checks        was that she had lost her job at the
 in Bronx County. All eight defendants were       “Century 21” department store because of
 charged with criminal possession of a            9-11. Pearson/Thomas had never worked at
 forged instrument in the second degree, a        Century 21 and submitted a forged employ-
 class D felony. They all pleaded guilty and      ee identification card as documentation.
 were ordered to pay restitution in the                 On August 15, 2002, Pearson/
 amount of the cashed checks.                     Thomas pleaded guilty to criminal posses-
       During the course of the investigation     sion of a forged instrument in the second
 of the Bronx cases, the assistant district       degree in the Bronx case and received a
 attorney prosecuting the cases learned that      sentence of “time served.” Because the
 one defendant, Isata Pearson, was also           check cashing establishment had refused to
 known as Alia Thomas. Using the name             cash the check, there was no restitution.
 Thomas, the defendant had cashed other                 Pearson/Thomas was not so lucky in
 relief checks in Manhattan. In cooperation       the Manhattan case. On September 4,
 with the Manhattan District Attorney’s           2002, she pleaded guilty in New York
 Office, the prosecutor arranged for a mem-       Supreme Court to forgery in the second
 ber of the Bronx District Attorney’s             degree, and on October 15th, she was sen-
 Detective Squad to arrest Pearson/Thomas         tenced to one year in jail. !

28                                                                          Annual Report 2002
                               Community Outreach

      Community residents and
business people often serve as the
“glue” that holds together collabo-
rative efforts among public and pri-
vate sector agencies and enhances
each group’s efficacy in preventing
crime and improving quality of life.
The Bronx District Attorney and his
staff actively participate in a variety
of programs and community activi-
ties to better serve the residents of
the county.
      In these collaborations the
Community Affairs Unit often serves         “Read to Me” Celebration at P.S. 205
as a liaison between the District
Attorney and the residents of Bronx       those offered by the Office. Some of     abuse. Each show is a half-hour
County. Staff from the unit attend        the other programs, such as the          long and deals with a particular
community meetings, and the unit          Elder Abuse Initiative and               topic. People from the community
provides speakers and tours of the        Operation Weed & Seed, are dis-          are invited to ask the D.A. and his
courts, offers educational programs,      cussed elsewhere in this report. Still   staff various questions related to
participates in interagency commit-       other programs have been in exis-        that topic. Topics of discussion
tees, and interacts regularly with        tence for a number of years and are      thus far have focused on:
community residents, neighborhood         described on the Office’s web site:      Economic Crime, Quality of Life,
leaders and others. The unit also                         Domestic Violence, Narcotics,
keeps residents informed of the sta-                                               Community Outreach, Elder
tus of a case as it progresses through           ASK THE BRONX D.A.                Abuse, Homicide Survivors, The
the criminal justice system.                                                       Abandoned Baby Protection Act
      The Office’s programs are                 Ask the Bronx D.A., a show co-     and the Bronx Multidisciplinary
coordinated by the unit, but volun-       hosted by the District Attorney          Team on Child Abuse.
teers from both legal and support         and Bronxnet’s Melanie Torres, is
staff are needed to implement             a 12-part series that serves to edu-              PROJECT JUMP
them. These individuals use their         cate Bronx residents about the
own time, often during evenings           criminal justice system. The show             Sophomores, juniors and
and weekends, to work with the            was created as part of an outreach       seniors from the Law, Justice and
Bronx community.                          effort to educate the public on          Public Service Academy at
      The programs highlighted            matters of concern ranging from          Theodore Roosevelt High School
below represent only a sample of          on-the-street drug sales to elder        are matched with volunteers from

Annual Report 2002                                                                                               9
the Bronx District Attorney’s         vides age-appropriate information          YOUTH TRIAL ADVOCACY PROGRAM
Office on a one-to-one basis.         on the negative effects of gangs,
Mentors provide much needed           gun violence and drugs. The pro-                 The Bronx District Attorney’s
support and inspiration to stu-       gram also provides information on          Office Youth Trial Advocacy
dents making their way through        the people and operations of the           Program (YTAP) provides motivat-
school. Traveling to the Bronx        District Attorney’s Office and the         ed students with an opportunity to
District Attorney’s Office to meet    criminal justice system. Over 700          explore a career in law. Students
with their mentors allows students    students participated in the STAR          meet with assistant district attorneys
to experience the mentors’ work       program in 2002.                           to discuss legal careers and the
environment and learn about the                                                  criminal justice system. Students are
functioning of the criminal justice     THE BRONX HIGH SCHOOL FOR                then divided into teams, with an
system. Fifty mentor/mentee pairs       LAW, GOVERNMENT AND JUSTICE              assistant district attorney serving as
were matched in 2002.                   CAREER EXPLORATION PROGRAM               a coach or mentor. Each team
                                                                                 learns how to develop advocacy
       TOURS AND SPEAKERS                  Once a week for four                  skills and debating techniques.
                                      weeks, 10th g rade students                Students then test their newly
      The Community Affairs           from the Bronx High School for             acquired skills in a moot court com-
Unit coordinates requests for         Law, Gover nment and Justice               petition. At the end of the program,
tours and speakers. Assistant dis-    travel to the Bronx District               every student is awarded a certifi-
trict attorneys address communi-      Attorney’s Office to participate           cate marking successful participa-
ty, religious, civic and student      in modules designed to give an             tion in the program.
groups regarding the criminal         overview of the Office’s various
justice system. Speakers discuss      bureaus and units. The students                    PEOPLE’S COURT
a variety of issues of interest to    record their observations in a                    PROGRAM (P.S. 156 )
the community. In addition,           journal which is reviewed by a
assistant district attorneys are      coordinator. T h e s t u d e n t s a r e       Elementary school students
available to conduct tours of the     also encouraged to share                   from P.S. 156 travel to the
courthouses and explain how a         their experiences.                         Bronx District Attorney’s Office
case proceeds through the crimi-
nal justice system.

         RISK (STAR)

     The STAR program uses a
multi-faceted approach to battling
narcotics and violence. Trained
staff at the District Attorney’s
Office participate in a three-part
community outreach program for
5th and 6th grade children and
their parents. This program pro-        District Attorney Johnson Speaks to Children from
                                        Middle School 80

 30                                                                                           Annual Report 2002
                                                                                  trict attorneys have volunteered to
                                                                                  attend these meetings. These repre-
                                               “Workshops such as                 sentatives assure that the District
                                                                                  Attorney is kept informed about issues
                                                   ‘After the Arrest,’
                                                                                  of significance to the community.
                                                 ‘You Be the Judge’
                                                  ‘Gang Awareness’                         SPECIAL PROJECTS

                                               have been developed                     The Community Affairs Unit
                                                 to inform citizens               also implements several special
                                                  about issues...”                events and programs throughout the
                                                                                  year to address various community
                                                                                  needs. Special programs are devel-
                                         - Photo by David Greene                  oped with community organizations
                                                                                  to afford various segments of the
to participate in mock trials.           trial procedures and the presence of     Bronx community an opportunity to
Incidents violating school rules         gangs in our schools and neighbor-       interact with the Bronx District
are brought before the mock              hoods. Staff are currently developing    Attorney and his staff.
court and the children act as            new workshops on “Safeguarding
defense counsel, prosecutor and          your Child on the Internet” and                CLOTHES-LINE PROJECT
court officers. With the assis-          “Court Monitoring.”
tance of assistant district attor-                                                     Each year since 1996, the
neys, the students learn how tri-                PRECINCT COUNCIL                 Bronx District Attorney’s Crime
als are prepared and conducted.                   REPRESENTATIVES                 Victims Assistance Unit collaborat-
The program also assists the                                                      ed with a coalition of crime victims
students by helping them to                    There are 12 precinct communi-     advocates and service organizations
develop effective communica-             ty councils in the Bronx that meet on    to create and organize the annual
tion skills while learning more          a monthly basis. Twelve assistant dis-   Bronx Clothes-Line Project. The
about the complexities of the
judicial system.


      The series provides the District
Attorney’s Office with an avenue to
educate Bronx residents about various
issues related to the criminal justice
system. Workshops such as “After the
Arrest,” “You Be the Judge” and
“Gang Awareness” have been devel-
oped to inform citizens about issues
such as criminal court arraignment,
                                           “You be the Judge” Workshop

Annual Report 2002                                                                                               31
Clothes-Line Project is a display of
t-shirts designed by survivors of
crime to break the silence surround-
ing their victimization and make
their voices heard by others who
support them in their struggle for
healing. Each shirt symbolizes pain,
survival, healing and empower-
ment, and provides a window into
the life of a victim who survived vio-
lence or died as a result of it. The
messages on the shirts are individu-
alized – some poetic, some plaintive
– allowing the artists to express their     Bronx Clothes-Line Project
feelings in their own way.
       In the aftermath of September      importance of helping victims            of real people. It puts a human face
11th, the theme for 2002 was              rebuild their lives.                     on our continuing efforts to combat
“Bringing Honor to Victims.” This               District Attor ney Robert          crime and certainly should increase
theme is reflective of the country’s      Johnson said, “This exhibit is a         everyone’s respect for the courage
heightened awareness of the harsh         poignant reminder that news head-        and tenacity of those who manage
and tragic impact of crime on vic-        lines and crime statistics are about     to survive the often brutal criminal
tims, while underscoring the critical     tragic and painful events in the lives   conduct of others.”

 32                                                                                             Annual Report 2002

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