On August 16, 2022, at approximately 1:27 a.m., Watervliet police officers conducted a motor vehicle stop in the area of 19th Street and Second Avenue after observing violations of the NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law. The passenger, Zaquon C. Woody, initially provided officers with a false name but due to exceptional teamwork, Woody was identified and charged with Criminal Impersonation in the 2nd Degree (Class A Misdemeanor). In addition, he was wanted for failing to appear at a September 2021 sentencing hearing in Albany County Court regarding an April 2020 arrest in the City of Watervliet.

Woody was remanded to the Albany County Correctional Facility without bail.

“Any reasonable person knows that when an offender is convicted of illegally possessing a loaded handgun and has a prior violent felony conviction for Robbery in the 2nd Degree, that defendant should not be released while awaiting sentencing. That is exactly what occurred in this case and it is an undeniable consequence of New York’s bail reform laws,” said Watervliet Police Chief Joseph Centanni. The primary mandate of the criminal justice system is to protect neighborhoods and punish criminals, not release dangerous ones to wreak havoc in them. The Watervliet Police Department remains committed to removing gun offenders from our streets,” concluded Centanni.

A Summary of Woody’s Criminal History  

1.      In March 2011, Woody was convicted of Robbery in the 2nd Degree and served three years in New York state prison. Woody was released to parole in May 2014. He was violated several times resulting in many addition years of incarceration. His parole concluded in June 2019.

2.      On April 2, 2020, at approximately 11:43 p.m., Watervliet police officers responded to the 1400 block of First Avenue for a domestic dispute. Upon arrival, the victim reported that her boyfriend, Woody, damaged her property. Through investigation it was discovered Woody unlawfully possessed a loaded 9mm handgun.  

Watervliet Police charged Woody, a 28-year-old male from Albany (photo attached) with Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the 2nd Degree (Class C Felony) and Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the 3rd Degree (Class D Felony). He was arraigned in Watervliet City Court and remanded to the Albany County Correctional Facility without bail. However, during a November 2020 bail hearing and despite the Albany County District Attorney Offices’ recommendation that Woody be remanded, he was released on minimal bail.

3.      On June 29, 2021, Woody pled guilty to Attempted Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the 2nd Degree (Class D Felony). As a provision of his guilty plea, Woody agreed to serve a five-year prison sentence which was scheduled to commence on September 13, 2021. In the meantime, Woody remained free on bail. 

4.      On September 13, 2021, Woody failed to appear for his sentencing hearing resulting in the issuance of a Bench Warrant for his arrest.