The Second Department, reversing Family Court in this juvenile delinquency proceeding, determined the court failed to comply with the notice provisions and the plea allocution requirements of the Family Court Act, as well as the proof requirements of the Penal Law. It was alleged the appellant either recklessly or intentionally broke a window:
Although the Family Court, Ulster County, advised the appellant of her rights prior to accepting an admission, the court failed to obtain an allocution from a parent or a person legally responsible for the appellant with regard to their understanding of any rights the appellant may be waiving as a result of her admission (see Family Ct Act § 321.3 … ). The appellant appeared telephonically even though there is no provision under article 3 of the Family Court Act authorizing the appearance by telephone of a minor in a juvenile delinquency proceeding, and the only persons in court that day were the appellant’s attorney and the attorney representing the Ulster County Attorney’s Office. …
Since the provisions of Family Court Act § 321.3 may not be waived, and the record does not support the determination of the court that a “reasonable and substantial effort” was made to notify the appellant’s mother or guardian about the … proceeding … .
… [T]he plea allocution also failed to comport with the sufficiency requirements of Family Court Act § 321.3(1), which mandates that the court ascertain through allocution of the appellant that she “committed the act or acts to which [s]he is entering an admission” … . The appellant’s allocution to breaking a window failed to establish the elements of criminal mischief in the fourth degree under subdivision 3 of Penal Law § 145.00, which requires evidence that the appellant “[r]ecklessly damage[d] property of another person in an amount exceeding two hundred and fifty dollars” … The petition did not allege any monetary amount as to the cost of the damage to the window, and no evidence as to the value of the window was adduced at the proceeding … . In fact, the invoice attached to the petition indicates that the cost of replacing the window, including labor, totaled $225, an amount less than the requisite jurisdictional predicate.
Even if the petition was liberally construed to have charged the appellant with the intentional conduct subdivision of criminal mischief, Penal Law § 145.00(1), rather than the subdivision that was charged, which pertains to reckless conduct … , dismissal of the petition is warranted … . The appellant’s allocution to breaking the window failed to show that she intentionally broke the window … . Matter of P., 2019 NY Slip Op 06497, Second Dept 9-11-19