Saratoga County District Attorney Karen A. Heggen reports that her office filed a Notice of Appeal on February 3, 2022 in the Saratoga Springs City Court regarding a Decision and Order that dismissed the charges of Unlawful Imprisonment and Disorderly Conduct in the interest of justice regarding an event that occurred on July 14, 2021.
District Attorney Karen Heggen previously noted that on the day the Court issued its ruling, “Clearly the judge’s decision is based not as much on the facts of the case involving Ms. Miles’ actions on July 14, 2021, but rather on the other factors. This decision is about Ms. Miles’ background and community involvement and not her actions on July 14, 2021. My office proposed a disposition of a plea to a disorderly conduct that took that background and personal information into account, but was rejected by Ms. Miles. I am not surprised by the Court’s decision, as the Court, on a prior date, proposed a disposition of an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal, which Ms. Miles rejected. I am concerned that this decision sends the wrong message that someone can violate the law and stop traffic, but if you have a background with involvement in your community and family, that can sway a court to dismiss the charges against you. I believe this may invite others to do the same in the future.”
DA Heggen observed that appellate courts interpreting cases involving motions to dismiss a case in the interest of justice have held that such dismissal authority should be “exercised sparingly”. The Saratoga Springs City Court decision starts by noting that “…blocking traffic is a serious matter…” and that with “…respect to the evidence of guilt, there is little question the Defendant’s [Jamaica Miles] actions constitute disorderly conduct…”.
Heggen states that “My office has filed this appeal because we believe the reasons set forth by the Court in its written decision dated January 24, 2022 do not adequately support the Court’s conclusion that the charges against Ms. Miles should be dismissed in the interest of justice.”