Family Court Juvenile Delinquency Petition Dismissed Due to Insufficient Statement of Arresting Officer
In Matter of Jahron S. (79 NY2d 632, 634 ) the Court of Appeals dismissed a Family Court juvenile delinquency petition (which it analogized to an information), finding insufficient the arresting officer's statement that he had observed the appellant in possession of 33 vials of crack cocaine and that " 'based upon his training and experience as a police officer assigned to a special narcotics unit with respect to the appearance, handling and packaging of narcotics and other controlled substances,' " he believed the substance to be crack cocaine.
Noting that in People v. Dumas (68 NY2d 729 ) it had indicated that such a statement would be sufficient, the Court observed (79 NY2d, at 640): "Dumas differs from the present case in one key respect, however.
As noted above, that case involved a misdemeanor complaint, and the factual part of a misdemeanor complaint must simply establish 'reasonable cause' to believe that the defendant committed the crime charged (CPL 100.40  [b]).
Thus, a much lower standard is applicable when determining the legal sufficiency of complaints, which, unlike informations and petitions, do not serve as the sole instrument of prosecution and adjudication."