As Part Of Legal Aid's Program To Mark The Landmark Gideon Right To Counsel Ruling, Legal Aid Co-Sponsors "Stop and Frisk" Town Halls With The New York City Comptroller
MONDAY, MARCH 18, 2013

As part of The Legal Aid Society's program to mark the 50th anniversary of the landmark United States Supreme Court ruling in Gideon v. Wainwright finding a right to counsel in criminal cases, The Legal Aid Society is co-sponsoring a series of "Stop and Frisk" Town Hall community education programs in all five boroughs of the City with the New York City Comptroller John Liu and a number of community-based organizations. As the oldest and largest legal services organization in the United States and the primary criminal defense organization in all five boroughs of New York City, The Legal Aid Society is participating in this initiative to provide "know your rights" information to adults and young people about the City's "stop and frisk" practices that result in wrongful arrests. The Legal Aid Society is challenging these City practices in law reform litigation aimed at ending unlawful marijuana arrests and the arrests of New York Housing Authority residents and their guests for allegedly trespassing in Housing Authority developments.

"Every day, in every borough, front-line Legal Aid Society lawyers and professional staff see New Yorkers who are improperly stopped, questioned and frisked and who are then wrongfully arrested," said Steven Banks, the Attorney-in-Chief of The Legal Aid Society, in a press release issued to announce this community "know your rights" initiative.

Denise Dominguez, Eric Poulos and Jodi Smith from The Legal Aid Society's Criminal Defense Practice (CDP) and Eileen Malunowicz and Rebecca Stegman from the Society's Juvenile Rights Practice (JRP) will participate in the Bronx Town Hall tonight, March 18, the actual anniversary of the Gideon ruling. Arthur Peeples, Daniel Ashworth and Jane Fox from CDP and Norah Van Dusen and Lauren Katzman from JRP will participate in the Brooklyn Town Hall on Wednesday, March 20. Stacy Meisner and Erica Holder from CDP and Ian Spiridigliozzi and Natasha Fortune from JRP participated in the Queens "Stop and Frisk" Town Hall on March 13. Town Halls in Manhattan and Staten Island will be scheduled shortly along with additional programs in some of the boroughs.