What to do about charges stemming from tresspass and theft?

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What to do about charges stemming from tresspass and theft?

My brother’s wife moved out of the home 8 months ago after 15 years of marriage. She has been taking away property with the help of hired hands in the middle of the night on most occasions. The police have stated that this is not a criminal matter, but rather a civil one. Recently, he confronted his wife and 2 males entering the property in the middle of the night. They rammed his vehicle, after which, he got out and attacked their vehicle with an axe, and now he is in jail with a felony charge and 2 misdemeanors. The police allowed them to stay at the property and continue to load their vehicle with personal property, stating that she has a legal right to be there and do as she sees fit. Is this really happening?

Asked on June 9, 2013 under Criminal Law, New York

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

I would be less concerned about the property and more  concerned aout the charges that your brother is facing. He is in a great deal of trouble here and needs to speak with a criminal law attorney ASAP.

The police were corrct in telling him that the removal of possessions was a civil matter. In fact until there was a court order otherwise, his wife had every right to do what she did. Your brother could have stopped her but he should have gone to court to do it. Not used a deadly weapon to destroy another's property. The fact is that things could have easily gotten even more out of control and people could have been seriously hurt if not worse.

Again, he needs to speak with experienced criminal counsel immediately.


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