(516) 972-1212

Criminal Obstruction Of Breathing/Blood Circulation

In New York, it is against the law to cause someone to stop breathing or obstruct their ability to breathe. Many times this is commonly referred to as choking or strangling a person. These actions can very quickly lead to severe injuries or even death, so, therefore, they are taken very seriously by New York law enforcement officers.

Under New York Law,  an individual may be convicted of criminal obstruction of breathing/blood circulation if:

  • They have the intent to disrupt the normal breathing or circulation of another person, and they either
    • Apply pressure on the throat or neck of the person, or
    • Block the nose or mouth of the person.

As an example, if, throughout the course of a fight, one person places their hands around the throat of another, causing them to struggle to breathe or start to choke, they may be able to be charged with obstruction of breathing.

New York Criminal Obstruction of Breathing Attorney

Penalties for criminal obstruction of breathing charges are steep and can have far-reaching implications on your life, possibly costing you your freedom, reputation, and resulting in a lengthy prison term. Therefore it is important to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who can skillfully represent you in court. At Law Office of Stephanie Selloni, New York defense lawyer Stephanie Selloni has years of experience defending clients from violent crime accusations.

She is prepared to work tirelessly on your case so call (516) 972-1212 today to schedule a free consultation. Law Office of Stephanie Selloni is located in Garden City, but attorney Selloni and her legal team serve clients throughout Nassau County, including Uniondale, Levittown, Mineola, and Hempstead.

Back to Top

Information Center

Back to Top

Penalties For Criminal Obstruction Of Breathing Or Blood Circulation

Obstruction of breathing or blood circulation is considered a Class A misdemeanor. Therefore, an individual could receive up to one year in jail if convicted. However, the judge may also use their discretion and not have the individual serve jail time, instead requiring them to serve probation of up to three years.

Criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation is classified as a family offense. If the incident occurred as a part of a domestic violence incident, there would most likely be additional requirements for the prosecution of the case in accordance with special rules under Criminal Procedure Law § 140.14(4).

Back to Top

Other Consequences Of Obstruction Of Breathing Or Blood Circulation

Outside of the court system, there may be additional penalties for being charged with a crime. These consequences can potentially be lifelong and have an unending effect on an individual’s life. Due to the nature of the crime, the individual may end up with a criminal record. A criminal record can be searched and usually found by anyone running a background check. This can affect employment opportunities, loan approvals, rental checks, and even college applications. None of these effects even take into account the effects that a conviction can have on someone’s personal and professional life and relationships.

Due to the nature of the crime of Criminal Obstruction of Breathing or Blood Circulation, it may also have negative effects on any immigration or child custody issues that may arise for the individual. If there are immigration issues, it is important to keep criminal records as clean as possible. An attorney can help the individual have the best chance of not being convicted of the crime.

With all of the legal and non-legal consequences that an individual may suffer when accused of a misdemeanor, it is extremely important to seek competent legal counsel to help reduce or remove the charges from their record immediately.

Back to Top

Defenses In An Obstruction Of Breathing Or Blood Circulation Case

Under the New York Penal code, there are statutory defenses to the charge of criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation. In addition, if the individual’s actions result from a valid medical or dental purpose, they may have a defense to the choking or strangulation charge.

We may also try to show that it was not the individual’s intent to obstruct the airways or blood circulation of the alleged victim. If it was not the individual’s intent to obstruct the airways, it might be a valid and viable defense to the crime.

Back to Top

Statute Of Limitations For Criminal Obstruction Of Breathing Or Blood Circulation

The statute of limitations covers the range of time that the alleged victim and prosecutor have to file charges. The clock starts once the victim discovers the individual’s crime. Once the statute of limitations expires, an individual no longer has to worry about this offense coming back to haunt them if they did commit it. Yet, it’s uncommon for victims to let the statute of limitations run out before they press charges. For this offense, the state has two years to start the prosecution of the accused individual.

Back to Top

Crimes Related To Obstruction Of Breathing/Blood Circulation

If the individual committing the crime does a similar crime with more intensity, they may also be charged with the crime of strangulation in either the first or second degrees. If the alleged victim loses consciousness or suffers a physical injury, the individual may be charged with strangulation in the second degree. Strangulation in the first degree requires the victim to suffer a serious physical injury due to the fact they did not have the ability to breathe or blood circulation for a longer period of time.

Other types of related charges that our attorneys usually see include harassment in either the first or second degrees, menacing in either the second or third degrees, reckless endangerment, aggravated harassment, assault, and forcible touching. All these crimes range from Class D felonies to Class B misdemeanors. But, when they are added on top of other charges, the penalties for each of the crimes can add up and cause an individual to rack up a lengthy criminal record and serve a long jail sentence.

Back to Top

Additional Resources

Bail Reformation – The New York legislature has worked to reform the types of crimes that are eligible for bail and how the amount of bail is determined in each case. This resource provides more information on the current state of the bail reform amendments and how they could affect an accused individual.

New York Penal Law – The New York State website provides this description of the legal definitions and elements of criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation.

Back to Top

Garden City Obstruction of Breathing Attorney | Nassau County, New York

If you are facing criminal charges for obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, contact Law Office of Stephanie Selloni today. Defense attorney Stephanie Selloni has decades of experience in criminal law and can help form a strong defense for your case. Too much is on the line so the sooner you contact Law Office of Stephanie Selloni, the better.

Call (516) 972-1212 to schedule a free consultation today. New York criminal defense attorney Selloni represents clients on Long Island in Garden City, Glen Cove, Mineola, and throughout Nassau and Suffolk County.

Back to Top