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New York Penal Law § 190.27: Criminal Sale of a Police Uniform

New York Penal Law § 190.27 defines the crime of criminal sale of a police uniform, which is a misdemeanor offense that involves the sale or transfer of a police uniform or other official police equipment to unauthorized individuals or entities. Under this section of the law, a person can be charged with criminal sale of a police uniform if they sell or offer for sale the uniform of any police officer to any person who does not present proof that they are a member of the police department authorized to purchase the uniform. The statute applies to all types of police uniforms and equipment, including badges, identification cards, firearms, and other tools or gear that are used in the performance of police duties.

It is important to note that the sale of police uniforms to unauthorized individuals can have serious consequences, as it can lead to impersonation of police officers and other criminal activities. Therefore, anyone charged with criminal sale of a police uniform should seek the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney to protect their rights and mount a strong defense.


People v. Cappello, 63 A.D.3d 992 (N.Y. App. Div. 2009). In this case, the defendant, John Cappello, was charged with criminal sale of a police uniform in violation of New York Penal Law § 190.27. Cappello had sold a police uniform to an undercover police officer for $500. At trial, the prosecution introduced evidence of the sale and testimony from the undercover officer. The defendant was convicted and sentenced to a prison term of one year.

On appeal, Cappello argued that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction, as the statute did not clearly define what constituted a police uniform. However, the appellate court found that the evidence was sufficient, as the uniform sold by Cappello was clearly designed to resemble a police uniform and was intended to be used in a manner that could reasonably be expected to deceive others into believing that the wearer was a police officer. The court affirmed the conviction and sentence.

Related Offenses
  1. Criminal impersonation in the second degree: New York Penal Law section 190.25
  2. Criminal impersonation in the first degree: New York Penal Law section 190.26

Criminal sale of a police uniform is classified as a Class A misdemeanor. If convicted, a person can face up to one year in jail, probation, and/or a fine of up to $1,000.

New York Penal Law § 190.27: Criminal Sale of a Police Uniform

A person is guilty of criminal sale of a police uniform when he or she sells or offers for sale the uniform of any police officer to any person, unless presented with a valid photo identification card showing the purchaser to be a member of the police department which has authorized the requested uniform or an authorization to purchase specified uniforms signed by the police chief or the police commissioner of such police department accompanied by a personal photo identification. For purposes of this section, "police officer" shall include federal law enforcement officers, as defined in section 2.15 of the criminal procedure law; and "uniform" shall include all or any part of the uniform which identifies the wearer as a member of a police department, such as the uniform, shield, badge, numbers or other identifying insignias or emblems. Criminal sale of a police uniform is a class A misdemeanor.

Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates

It is important to contact an experienced New York criminal lawyer if you are accused of criminal sale of a police uniform who can help you navigate the legal system and ensure that your rights are protected throughout the process. They can also negotiate with the prosecution on your behalf, potentially reducing the charges or having the charges dropped. Without the representation of an experienced New York criminal lawyer, you may be at risk of being unfairly convicted or facing harsh sentencing. Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: Nassau County, Queens, Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Staten Island, Suffolk County, and Westchester County.

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