Breaking and Entering: Dismissal Contemplated by Adult Court Disposition

Property Offenses

A repeat offender was arrested for Breaking and Entering into a residential dwelling during the daytime. The allegation was the man entered a residential home when no one was home and stole a variety of personal belongings to include electronics and jewelry valued in the thousands of dollars. No one saw or heard the incident. However when the occupants returned and discovered their home burglarized they notified authorities. Police arrived on scene and discovered a thumb print on a jewelry box located in the bedroom from which various items of heirloom and expensive jewelry were missing. Police recovered the thumb print subjected it to print analysis and comparison which yielded a match to the repeat offender. This resulted in filing of charges and issuance of a warrant for the manӳ arrest in Rhode Island Superior Court.

At the time charges were filed and the warrant issued the man was incarcerated in Massachusetts and serving a sentence in connection with unrelated charges. The young man who was in his early twenties had a colorful criminal history. His record contained charges and convictions for offenses such as receiving stolen property carrying a dangerous weapon witness intimidation disorderly conduct assault and battery larceny from a building breaking and entering vandalizing property unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle possession of a stun gun and possession of heroin. While incarcerated on some of these charges in Massachusetts the young manӳ mother passed away. She was his last living parent as his father had previously passed during a boating accident years earlier when the man was a young boy. Given these unfortunate circumstances the man retained Attorney Calcagni to represent him in connection with these matters.

Once retained Attorney Calcagni first petitioned the Massachusetts Court for his clientӳ release. He cited the hardship associated with the death of his last living parent. The man was also the beneficiary of his motherӳ life and/or funeral insurance policy. The Court granted Attorney Calcagniӳ request. Once released Attorney Calcagni also voluntarily surrendered the man to the Rhode Island Superior Court in order to vacate the pending warrant for his arrest there and to be arraigned on the Breaking and Entering charge. Attorney Calcagni was successful in this regard. On account of his clientӳ voluntarily surrender and other mitigating circumstances the Court agreed to release the man on personal recognizance notwithstanding his recent incarceration and extensive criminal history.

Attorney Calcagni next began working on a resolution of the manӳ pending felony case. After obtaining the supporting evidence and discovery materials in the case Attorney Calcagni retained a latent print or fingerprint expert to evaluating the quality of the single print collected by police during the course of the investigation in this case and then its comparison to the manӳ thumb print. According to the Defenseӳ own expert there was a strong match between the collected print and the manӳ known print making it difficult to later dispute this issue at trial. Once confirmed Attorney Calcagni then began negotiating a pretrial disposition. During negotiations the man reoffended in Massachusetts and was re-incarcerated as a probation violator. Grappling with an uncontrollable heroin addiction the man needed immediate substance abuse treatment and intervention.

Attorney Calcagni persuaded the manӳ Massachusetts Probation Officer to not press for a lengthy jail sentence as a result of the probation violation. The two then worked together to place the man into a long-term drug treatment program that had in-patient and out-patient components as part of the overall program. The man was then released and allowed to enter the program. Once released Attorney Calcagni managed to get his clientӳ presence in Rhode Island Superior Court for months while the man cleaned himself up from drugs. After the in-patient course of his treatment the man was discharged and then placed into the out-patient component of the program. Once this occurred Attorney Calcagni resumed negotiations for a pretrial disposition of the pending felony Breaking and Entering charge.

Resolving this case became about communicating to the prosecutor the extenuating and mitigating circumstances of the manӳ life. After several months of negotiating he ultimately persuaded two prosecutors and two judges to allow the man to enter the Rhode Island Adult Court Program. This decision was the product of extensive deliberations and consideration of the manӳ family history; commitment to recovery; battle with heroin; young parenthood; and promise for a future. Acceptance into the Drug Court Program provided that so long as the man continues to remain clean of drugs and alcohol; provides clean urine screens for 12 months; attends treatment as directed; and complies with all other conditions imposed by the Court the matter would be dismissed after one year. The man was successfully accepted into this program and is well on his way to having this felony charge dismissed. Congratulations!