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Case Results

Overturned conviction on appeal for driver who lost control and hit a pedestrian

December 2018

People v. Smith: David's advocacy led to his client's convictions getting overturned on appeal by successfully challenging prosecution and evidence under the Penal Law and the Administrative Code for accidental collision with pedestrian after the driver lost control of his vehicle.

Background: Following a nonjury trial, defendant was convicted in the Criminal Court, New York County, of reckless driving, failure to exercise due care to avoid collision with a pedestrian, and failure to yield to a pedestrian. Defendant appealed.
Holdings: The Supreme Court, Appellate Term, held that:
1. there was insufficient evidence that defendant's actions were criminally negligent to support conviction for failure to exercise due care to avoid collision with a pedestrian and failure to yield to a pedestrian, and
2. there was insufficient evidence that defendant operated her vehicle in a wilful or wanton disregard of the rights of others to support conviction for reckless driving.

Practice area(s): Appeals, Constitutional Law, Criminal Defense

Court: Supreme Court, Appellate Term, New York, First Department

David Holland

As Executive Director of Empire State NORML and President of the New York City Cannabis Industry Association, David has been a leading advocate in the cannabis space for over 20 years. He has represented clients in marijuana related proceedings everywhere from traffic court to the United States Supreme Court, and he helped obtain clemency for five elderly prisoners servicing life without parole for marijuana. David also handles complex civil and criminal litigation in other areas including employment, First Amendment, and business.

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