Mother and son get reduced or no charges

Harold E. Albright III

Mary J. Miesowicz

BERNE — By pleading guilty, 18-year-old Harold E. Albright III was sentenced to disorderly conduct, a violation, satisfying all charges for strangulation, imprisonment, and assault of his girlfriend after the last St. Patrick’s Day parade in Albany.

Albright’s mother, Mary J. Miesowicz, who drove the car from the parade to the Hilltowns, was charged with unlawfully dealing with a child and unlawful imprisonment, both misdemeanors. Her charges were adjourned in contemplation of dismissal after her court appearance with Albright in Berne on Jan. 14.

If she commits no additional offenses in the next six months, Miesowicz, 49, would be clear of her charges. Albright had no fine but a $125 surcharge to pay.

No-contact orders of protection require the mother and son to stay away from and to not make contact with the woman who told police she was choked and punched by Albright and kept from escaping their car. She was 18 and Albright was 17 at the time.

In addition to the original charges of two misdemeanors and a felony, Albright’s plea satisfied a criminal contempt charge for his violation of an order of protection. In June, police discovered Albright in a parked car near the Fox Creek with the woman who accused him in March; he was sitting in the passenger seat and she was on the driver’s side, according to the sheriff’s office. The Enterprise is withholding the woman’s name.

Albright said in December that he hasn’t been able to find work because of his outstanding charges and told Berne Town Judge Albert Raymond on Jan. 7 that he plans to join the military after high school.

“I don’t want to make any comments on it,” Albright told The Enterprise after his sentencing, saying he has been in the newspaper enough.

Miesowicz said in court that her pending charges have prevented her from working, as well.

She was previously arrested in 2006 with intent to cause physical injury, a misdemeanor.

Albright was arrested by Albany City Police in August 2011 for third-degree assault, a misdemeanor. He was charged with aggravated criminal contempt later that month.

His attorney, Lee Greenstein, declined to comment to The Enterprise.

In police reports from 2013, Albright is described as 5-feet-9-inches tall and 150 pounds.

The defendants have said that, during the parade on March 16, the woman police referred to as Albright’s girlfriend had obtained alcoholic drinks on her own and became unruly when they wanted to bring her home. Albright was trying to restrain her, they said, as she kicked Miesowicz in the car. His father, Harold Albright, told The Enterprise that the woman caused the bruised eye evident in Miesowicz’s mug shot.

In her sworn statement to police, the woman said Miesowicz bought vodka for the two teenagers, as she had done in the past, and that they were both drunk. She wrote that Albright “began acting mean,” so she wanted to go home, at which point Albright became physical with her.

Albright was charged with second-degree strangulation, a felony, and two misdemeanors: second-degree unlawful imprisonment and third-degree assault. They were reduced to the violation of disorderly conduct, which involves the “intent to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof.”

“With the evidence and facts that were presented, this was an appropriate resolution,” said Cecilia Walsh, spokeswoman for the Albany County District Attorney’s Office, declining to elaborate on the record about the reasons for the reduced charge in order "to protect the victim.”

More Hilltowns News

  • Following the closure of Rensselaerville Volunteer Ambulance, the Albany County Sheriff’s Office has had to offer an ambulance with an emergency medical provider as well as a paramedic in a fly car. This has led to an increase in the costs for the three Hilltowns served: Berne, Westerlo, and Rensselaerville.

  • At Berne-Knox-Westerlo, a new program will teach students the many aspects of agriculture, from water pH to horse care.

  • The Berne-Knox-Westerlo Board of Education is putting up for a Nov. 2 vote two propositions for capital projects — for $15 million and $5 million. After a lengthy debate over whether the capital project was a “blank check” or a means of improving student education, three board members voted yes, one voted no, and one abstained.