Criminal & Traffic
Property - Contracts - Business
Criminal & Traffic
WHEN READING THE DESCRIPTIONS OF THESE PAST CASES, PLEASE KEEP THIS IN MIND:
1) THE OUTCOME OF A PARTICULAR MATTER DEPENDS ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO THAT CASE.; AND
2) CASE DESCRIPTIONS ARE NOT INTENDED TO GUARANTEE OR PREDICT ANY SIMILAR OR PARTICULAR RESULT IN THE FUTURE AND YOU SHOULD NOT ASSUME THAT A SIMILAR RESULT CAN BE OBTAINED IN A LEGAL MATTER OF INTEREST TO YOU.
Leonard Buscemi’s experience and training began in criminal courtrooms where he learned firsthand the law and procedure. In 1979, Mr. Buscemi served as the full-time legal intern to District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Leonard Braman, assigned to preside over felony cases. At the same time, he worked part-time investigating assault, armed robbery and arson cases for Washington, D.C. criminal defense attorney Richard Stern. In his third year of law school, Mr. Buscemi was selected to be a Special Assistant United States Attorney in the Misdemeanor Division the District of Columbia Superior Court pursuant to D.C. Law Student in Court Program. There he was assigned 40 criminal misdemeanor cases and argued 30 substantive motions on behalf of the Government at hearings (all ruled in favor of the Government) and tried five cases (all returning convictions).
Since entering private practice, Mr. Buscemi has represented individuals charged with criminal and traffic offenses such as the following:
Assault and battery
DWI (Driving While Intoxicated)
Possession of a controlled substance
Possession of alcohol (under the age of 21)
Speeding over speed limit;
Speeding too fast for highway conditions;
Speeding at school crossing;
Improper driving on controlled access highway;
Following too closely;
Failing to give proper signals;
Failing to pay full time and attention to operation of motor vehicle.
Driver and Learner permit violations;
Notable Criminal Cases
Airport – Traveler – Baggage Clerk – Criminal Assault and Battery –Class 1 Misdemeanor
A tired and irritated out-of-town business traveler, delayed overnight in a DC snowstorm, had to wait for a flight the next morning from Regan National Airport and could not retrieve his luggage from baggage claims. Interaction between the traveler and a U.S. Airways baggage claims clerk resulted in the arrest of the traveler on charges of criminal assault and battery under Virginia Code § 18.2-57, a first class misdemeanor. The Commonwealth’s Attorney based his case on witness accounts of aggressive verbal and physical behavior on the part of the traveler. Before trial, the Commonwealth’s Attorney allowed counsel to assess the strength of the Commonwealth’s case and interview the baggage clerk and an airport police officer who corroborated the offending behavior. The case was then disposed of by plea agreement in lieu of a trial whereby the business traveler wrote a letter of apology, received anger management counseling, paid a fine, court costs, and had the charges dismissed after one year of good behavior.
Trial & Acquittal – Assault and Battery – Altercation – Co-Workers- Self- Defense
Trial and acquittal in General District Court for Fairfax County for male delicatessen worker charged with criminal assault and battery of a female co-worker stemming from a workplace altercation. Female co-worker was only minimally touched when the male co-worker raised his hand to avoid being struck in the face by the female worker who struck him earlier and had followed him to the back of the store to continue the argument. The case involved a factual dispute as to who was the real aggressor. The trial court found that the Commonwealth failed to establish quilt beyond a reasonable doubt and acquitted the male-coworker of the charges.
Reckless Driving Charges on U.S. Army Base Dismissed
A 67 year old child care worker at child care center located on Fort Myer U.S. Army Base was departing the base driving her vehicle when she collided with another vehicle exiting a parking garage and into the path of her vehicle.
An officer who later arrived at the scene took a statement from only the other driver and her passenger. The officer never interviewed the child care worker who was foreign born and had limited proficiency in English, but charged her in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia with reckless driving (Reckless driving is a charge which can affect security clearances, insurance costs, and other sensitive matters). Based on photographic evidence of the vehicle, an inspection of the scene and aerial photos, the United States Attorney agreed to dismiss the charges.
Reckless Driving- 6 Demerit Point Violation –Mitigating Circumstances – Hospital
Director of a government agency charged with reckless driving when she was detected by laser equipment to be driving more than 20 miles per hour over the posted speed limit. The violation exposed her to this 6 point violation which would remain on her driving record for 11 years. Mitigating circumstances that she was responding to a call from a hospital nurse that her mother’s condition had worsened and she needed to get to there were taken into account and presented to Commonwealth’s Attorney which led to a plea agreement to a lesser speed violation.
Notable Traffic Cases
Taxicab Driver – Tire Blow Out on Interstate – Reckless Driving Charges Dismissed
A minor vehicular collision (no injuries) occurred when a taxibcab tire blew out on Interstate 395. The taxicab driver was able to safely navigate in the pouring rain at high speed across three lanes to the shoulder of the road. Despite being able to control his vehicle under exigent circumstances, the police officer who arrived at the scene charged the cab driver with “reckless driving.” Aerial photographs, maps, driving record, inspection records, etc. were presented to Commonwealth Attorney before trial and the charge was dismissed.
Scooter Driver – Failure to Obey Highway Sign – General District Court
Driver of 50cc Vespa scooter charged with failure to obey highway sign and faced incurring demerit point on his operator’s licenses. The photos showed a complicated, urban intersection and unclear signage at an Arlington intersection near George Mason University Law School where Kirkwood Road, Fairfax Drive, Jackson Street, and 10th Street that created many different interpretations in the mind of the driver as to what direction and lanes to lawfully proceed. Photographic evidence presented to Commonwealth Attorney and police officer pre-trial led to a plea to a lesser violation (defective equipment) and no demerit points.