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Misdemeanor Assault, Theft of Service Charges Dismissed for Partygoer

“Out of Towner” Case Stemmed From Argument with Cab Driver

Challenge: Our client was a young woman visiting family in Williamsburg, Brooklyn during the summertime. A petite and aspiring actress from another state, she posed no immediate physical threat and had no prior criminal record.

After a night of clubbing in Manhattan she got into a cab to take her home. During the ride, a dispute arose over the fare between her and the driver. We believed the cab driver was trying to take financial advantage of an out-of-towner and our client refused to pay. The cab driver called the police and she was booked for assault and misdemeanor theft of services.

Solution: Though distraught about spending any time in a jail cell, our client was clear-headed enough to be polite to the officers, comply with their instructions and also to ask for a lawyer before answering any questions. She knew a mutual friend of D’Emilia Law, who asked us to intervene on her behalf. 

We accepted the case and were confident that we could secure a favorable outcome. First we wrote extensive motions and collaborated with the district attorney to ensure our client would be treated as fairly as any New Yorker. When it came time to argue the case, we contended that the taxi driver sought to take advantage of someone he knew to be slightly inebriated who would be a proverbial “fish out of water.” He aimed to collect an outrageous fee and was met with resistance by what he thought was an absentminded passenger.

Result: D’Emilia Law already felt it was in an advantageous position when we crafted her defense, and we ultimately convinced the district attorney to dismiss the charges. The client was the classic example of a defendant who thought her world would end with the misdemeanor charge. We made good on our promise to treat her like family and secured the best-possible result.  

This case was a standout for us because of the scene we came upon when we picked up our client from her jail cell. She had been crying, with makeup running down her face. She was being comforted by other women—some of whom could be described as “ladies of the night”—and was relieved to be released. We became her new shoulder to lean on. With the charges dropped and her record untarnished, she enjoyed the rest of her Williamsburg visit.