2007-10-05 / Community

Small Violation Leads To Greater Charges

By Howard Schwach

A Rockaway man found out the hard way last week that it is not a good idea to violate the law in even a small way when you have more to hide.

When police officers from the 101 Precinct in Far Rockaway stopped Michael Howard, 20, of 20-47 Seagirt Boulevard for not wearing a helmet while driving a motorcycle at Beach 20 Street and Seagirt Boulevard at about 1:40 p.m. on September 26, they had planned on giving the local man a summons for that rather minor offense.

After they stopped Howard, however, they found that there was more involved than simply a summons. According to court papers supplied by Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, Police Officer Raymond Rusielewicz of the 101 Precinct said that Howard was unable to provide the officers with insurance or registration documents for the 1998 Katana Suzuki motorcycle he was driving.

A further check with the state's Department of Motor Vehicles showed that Howard's license had been suspended in August of this year and remains suspended. In addition, the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) on the motorcycle was not active and the bike was, therefore, not registered or insured in New York State.

In addition, a check of the bike's license plate revealed that the plate had been stolen, and was registered to another person for a Honda Motorcycle, court records show.

Police charged Howard with criminal possession of stolen property and driving with a suspended license.

He was arraigned in Queens Supreme Court on September 27, charged with driving without insurance, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, driving or parking an unlicensed motor vehicle, driving a motorcycle without a helmet, driving an unregistered vehicle and having improper plates, according to a spokesperson for DA Brown.He was released on his own recognizance for his next hearing, which was set for November 5.

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