For more than thirty years, Assemblyman Chuck Lavine practiced complex criminal law as appointed counsel in the federal and state courts. As a member of the Assembly Codes and Judiciary Committee, Chuck puts his extensive experience to good use.
While Assemblyman Lavine was a leading force behind the pragmatic modifications to the rigid and outdated “Rockefeller Drug Laws,” he remains a staunch supporter of enhanced punishments for violent offenders. Chuck authored the RULED—“Related Use of a Lethal or Explosive Device”—bill, mandating an additional 10 years in prison for anyone convicted of committing a crime while possessing a firearm or explosive device. The additional, consecutive sentence can be waived or avoided if the offender honestly discloses to the satisfaction of law enforcement how and from whom the weapon was procured. With compliance, the criminal will be “ruled out” from having to serve the extra 10 years; without it, he will then be “ruled in” and will serve the additional, lengthy prison sentence.
Like other criminal justice experts, Chuck believes that that the ability to gather intelligence and take preemptive action is the key to effective law enforcement. When criminals learn they will face the mandatory 10-year additional, consecutive sentence for having used a gun during the commission of their crimes, many will be persuaded to honestly disclose the identities of the criminals from whom they got the weapons. Law enforcement then has the information it needs to investigate, charge, prosecute and convict the underground enterprises and gangs that profit on the death and injury of our citizens. Throughout his time as a legal counsel, local elected official, and member of the Assembly, Chuck Lavine has shown a deep commitment to providing for the public safety. He is a respected and knowledgeable leader on all issues related to public safety and welfare in the New York State Legislature.