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NYC Criminal Defense Attorney
Arrested? Call 24/7 (212) 619-3900 Results-Driven Defense Attorneys Relentlessly Fighting to Protect Your Rights from Start to Finish

NYC Criminal Defense Attorney

Former Manhattan Prosecutor Fighting for You

An experienced and skilled New York City (NYC) criminal defense lawyer can be the difference between a long jail sentence and getting your case dismissed. Lance Fletcher, a former Manhattan Prosecutor with over 15 years of experience, will work tirelessly to get you the outcome that you need. We focus on criminal cases in New York City. Criminal cases typically happen when you've been arrested and you have an upcoming court date or the NYPD has contacted you as part of an investigation into you. Whether the charges against you are felonies or misdemeanors, convictions have consequences so your criminal case may be the last and best opportunity to protect your reputation and liberty.

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    Our firm is dedicated to criminal defense. See how we can help!
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    Thousands of Criminal Cases Handled

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The High Stakes of New York Criminal Law

best nyc criminal defense attorney

Criminal convictions can be devastating and lead to life-altering consequences. You can lose your freedom, your job, your professional license, your right to vote, your ability to stay in your apartment, and you could make yourself vulnerable to civil liability. Even a brief detention (incarceration) in New York City often happens at Rikers Island, made notorious by chronic staffing problems and recent violence. Arrests, even for non-violent offenses, often entails being handcuffed, fingerprinted, and photographed. If you have prior convictions, you may even face enhanced sentencing and if you aren’t a citizen, you may face deportation. Any conviction, even to a low-level offense, can trigger the loss of certain rights and privileges or employment problems.

The Law Offices of Lance Fletcher defends clients facing criminal charges in all New York City courts including Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and the Bronx. We defend cases before arrest (when the police want to speak with you), following arrest and at the arraignment, after the arraignment, and up to and including trial. We defend all types of criminal cases including those that started with a desk appearance ticket and all misdemeanors and felonies.

As a former Manhattan prosecutor, Lance Fletcher deploys a defense tailored to your needs by utilizing private investigators, medical and forensic experts, and conducting an independent investigation when needed to mount the most effective defense of your case possible. Contacts us for a consultation to discuss the details of your arrest and the plan for your upcoming court date.

The ins and outs of New York City Criminal Law

In New York City, there are two ways you may get arrested.

Desk Appearance Tickets. If you’ve been handcuffed and fingerprinted and released with a white piece of paper with a court date on it and that reads “Desk Appearance Ticket” at the top, you’ve been issued a Desk Appearance Ticket which was given to you instead of bringing you to see a judge right away. Desk Appearance Tickets became more common in the 2000s because they saved the City time and effort since by issuing a Desk Appearance Ticket, the arresting officer didn’t have to lodge you in a holding cell downtown and the City has much more time to draft and file charges.

Central Booking. If you’ve been handcuffed, fingerprinted, and brought to see a criminal court judge within about 24-36 hours of your arrest, you were brought to central booking for your arrest. Central booking is where you are brought for post-arrest processing and to wait to see the judge. From central booking, you are taken into a courtroom for arraignment. If bail is set, you are then brought to a detention facility such as Rikers Island. If no bail is set, you may be released from the courtroom. Depending on what your attorney says or doesn’t say, or what you say or don’t say during the arraignment could have significant consequences for you and your case going forward.

In New York, there are three group of offenses

Violations. In New York, violations are criminal offenses that are punishable by up to 15 days in jail and include charges such as disorderly conduct, jay-walking, and certain traffic tickets and other routine offenses.

Misdemeanors. In New York, misdemeanors are crimes that are punishable by up to 364 days in jail and include offenses such as assault, DWI, theft of services, and criminal mischief (property damage).

Felonies. In New York, felonies are the most serious criminal offense and are punishable by over a year of jail and include offenses such as gun possession, felony assault, felony DWI, grand larceny, robbery, burglary, rape, and murder.

Some situations can be charged either as a felony or misdemeanor, depending on how the prosecutor files it. For example, if you are accused of damaging property and the damage is over $250, the prosecutor may charge this as a felony or misdemeanor. Additionally, some charges are generally misdemeanors but if it’s not your first time, it could become charged as a felony. For example, your first DWI may be a misdemeanor but your second one might be charged as a felony.

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Why Choose The Law Office of Lance Fletcher, PLLC?

  • Customized Defense
  • 24/7 Availability
  • Proven Results
  • Former Prosecutor

Striving for The Best Results

    "Justice in Actions"
    In near perfect synchrony with the 2012 enactment of Dodd-Frank shifting the regulatory landscape and posing negative tail risks to an industry defining the entirety of my professional career, more serious legal risks surfaced which had posed real threats for my life in general. Lance Fletcher was recommended with high praise and at the end of the legal procedural protocols, I had not at any given time felt even an iota of disappointment for retaining his services. His communicative abilities, whether it be with client, judge, and/or prosecution is unparalleled...even compared against my numerous retainers of high powered lawyers and attorneys in the past and present. Simply put, Lance is a man of character whose words are never empty and actions always present.
    - Dedication and Virtue Personified
    ""A well worthy professional""
    Attorney Lance Fletcher has a positive attitude, straight forward and knows how to get the job done! The process (my case) was longer than I thought but it was worth it and now I don't have to worry about anything any more. He deeply believes in his work and cares for his clients making sure they don't over-stress the situation. He's a great professional at what he does and I'm indebted for his work. Note: If you're in a situation, Attorney Lance Fletcher is the right choice!
    I Was really worried about my case. I would of never be able to obtain a career with a record, was never charge a felony before,went to Mr. Lance (esq) took care of everything, great outcome to a violation, will definitely recommend, 5 stars all the way. THANKS
    - Marv
    "Knowledgable Guidance"
    Attorney Lance Fletcher was clear and concise and explained all of our options extremely well. He provided calm, confident guidance in a very unfamiliar process with a very professional and knowledgable demeanor. It was apparent that he knew the court well and he had a good rapport with the court staff. I would highly recommend Attorney Lance Fletcher.
    - Mary F.
    "Highly recommended!!"
    Attorney Fletcher is not only experienced and confident, but also taking his time listening and answering every questions I had. Thank you soooo much. I can't express how lucky I was to find you here to help me!
    - Thank you sooo much!!!
    "Thanks a million!"
    I am very grateful to Lance Fletcher. This was my first time ever being in trouble and he listened to my concerns and allayed my fears. He keeps in constant communication via phone, E-mail and text. I am very happy with the outcome of my case.
    "Very polite, honest, and professional"
    I found Mr. Fletcher on the Internet . When I met with him, I found him to be very polite, honest, and professional. When we were in court, he fought aggressively and the criminal charges were eventually dropped. Thank you for everything.
    - N.M.
    "conveyed confidence, professionalism, and the resolve to fight for a successful outcome"
    I think that, in addition to drafting a brilliant motion, you conveyed confidence, professionalism, and the resolve to fight for a successful outcome. You will go a long way.
    - D.S.


New York’s criminal law traces its roots to our colonial heritage and reliance on common law. The common law, which we inherited from England, is a system of rules developed by judges based on the unique set of facts of a particular case. The “common law” stands for the idea that a judge can listen to your lawyer’s arguments and make a ruling. This ruling, if later adopted by other judges, is called case law which is, essentially, a new law. Case law, in addition to statutes, is the law of the land. A statute is a written law passed by the legislature. Statutes are set forth in a collection of laws on a particular subject such as the New York Penal Law. When your case enters New York’s courts, the outcome can be influenced by thousands of individual statutes and the cases interpreting these statutes. Statutes and case law form the framework for everything the prosecutor and judge can and cannot do in the course of your case. 

A New York City criminal case starts when something happens that catches the attention of law enforcement. It could be because of a third party who called the police or something that the police observed directly. From there, numerous reports and actions can be taken by one or many law enforcement officers, each of whom have different motives, observations, and roles. When your case is prosecuted, it is sent to the District Attorney so that criminal charges can be filed in a local court. The District Attorney may be one individual or a large office with thousands of employees. Your case may be based on a simple set of facts or based on many different pieces of evidence including eye-witnesses, video surveillance, financial records, statements, and other facts. You could have one charge, or face hundreds of charges. 

To help our clients, we determine the winning strategy. In some cases, this means taking immediate steps to challenge the legality of the charges and in others it means offering proof of any mitigating circumstances. Selecting the right strategy is everything because it will determine how the arraignment (the first court date) should be handled, and how every additional court date and any trial should be handled. We fight for dismissal not only in some cases, but in all. This is because regardless of whether there is a strong case against you or not, fighting for dismissal may reveal hidden defenses or weaknesses in the prosecutor's case. In pursuing our client's defense, we will look at every document, every relevant law, and every available procedure to obtain a dismissal or reduction of the charges. Contact us today for a Evaluation evaluation. 

  • Felony Assault - Brooklyn
    Client accused of assaulting a police officer. Client was a licensed professional facing a possible state prison sentence and, as a convicted felon, the end of his career. Outcome: All criminal charges dropped, no criminal conviction, no jail time.
  • Macy's - Manhattan
    Client left without paying for two sweaters that were hidden in client's purse- Case dismissed, no criminal record, no fines.

Speak With an Attorney Today

Arrested or contacted by NYPD? Contact us today. Call or text: (212) 619-3900

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