Woman Arrested for Failing to Keep Yard Clean

Posted on: December 15, 2014 by in Criminal Defense
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Denver criminal defense lawyersThe growing criminalization of America is something that Denver criminal defense lawyers and civil rights advocacy groups around the country have been very concerned about. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, over the past 20 years, police officers across the country have made more than 250 million arrests. As many as one out of every three Americans is included in the FBI criminal database. Those statistics point to the increasing over criminalization of society.

For yet example of this growing criminalization, look to Tennessee where a woman was recently arrested for failing to mow her lawn. According to the woman, she initially was cited by the city over the summer, because her lawn required some care. But the woman says that she didn’t have time to maintain her lawn, because of lack of time. Both she and her husband worked full-time, and shared a single vehicle.

Over a period of time, the lawn did begin to look shabby, and while that may not have made for great neighborhood aesthetics, it’s hard to understand why this was treated as an offense. The woman received another citation, and then recently after a hearing, was informed that she would have to spend five days behind bars.

Any Denver criminal defense lawyer would find several transgressions that seem to have occurred in this case. The woman says that she was never informed of her legal rights, and was never informed that she could have legal representation in court. As a result, she had no lawyer representing her in court.

To set things straight, the judge recently acknowledged that the woman was not guilty of any criminal offense, and reduced her sentence to six hours in jail. The judge insisted on the woman spending some time behind bars, even though the woman offered to perform community service instead. She has served out her six hours in jail, but the judge says that he could possibly sentence her to additional jail time if he’s not happy with her yard work.

Marijuana Law Does Not Provide Immunity from DUI

Posted on: December 12, 2014 by in DUI
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Denver DUI defense lawyersAn Arizona Court of Appeals recently ruled that medical marijuana cardholders in the state do not necessarily have immunity from DUI prosecution if they are driving with marijuana in the body.

This is an important ruling that Denver DUI defense lawyers will be particularly interested in, especially because Colorado recently legalized the sale of marijuana for recreational purposes. In the Arizona case, the man was arrested back in 2011, and charged with driving while impaired, and driving while having marijuana in his body. The man is a medical marijuana user.

He was acquitted of driving while impaired, but found guilty of driving with marijuana in his system. He appealed the ruling, arguing that medical marijuana cardholders in Arizona are exempt from DUI prosecution under the Medical Marijuana Act. The only exception to the rule, he argued, was if motorists operated a vehicle while impaired. Marijuana use in Arizona is legal only for medicinal purposes. But the court has now ruled that persons who use marijuana cannot drive with marijuana in their system, and claim immunity. A person may not operate a vehicle while he has any traces of THC in his system.

That is an interesting ruling, especially when you consider that the byproducts of marijuana, like inactive marijuana metabolites may continue to remain in a person’s system for weeks after he uses the marijuana.

Colorado recently became one of the first states in the country to legalize the sale of recreational marijuana. However, Denver DUI defense lawyers have found that the law has resulted in complications, especially those related to DUI. In Colorado, you are guilty of DUI, if you are found to be operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. You can also be charged with DUI if you operate a motor vehicle, while being a habitual user of any prohibited substances. Persons, who are operating a motor vehicle with 5 ng per liter of THC in their system or higher, can be charged with DUI.


Man Loses DUI Appeal Based on Warrant

Posted on: December 10, 2014 by in DUI
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Denver DUI lawyerA Supreme Court ruling delivered last year that required that police get a search warrant before they draw blood from a person they suspect of DUI will not help a man, whose blood was taken in exactly such a manner without his consent, more than a year earlier. He recently lost his DUI appeal, based on the improperly acquired warrant.

The man was arrested by California Highway Patrol officers in November 2011. Officers were alerted to the fact that he was driving at about 90 mph in a 65 mph zone. When the office pulled him over for speeding, he noticed that the man appeared to be under the influence of alcohol. He was arrested and taken to a local area office. However, he fused an alcohol test. Then, police officers restrained the man while blood was drawn from him. When tests were conducted, his blood-alcohol limit registered at.19%, which is much higher than the maximum limit of .08%.

A judge refused to suppress the blood test results. The man pleaded no contest, and was sentenced to one year in jail. However, just two months before he was sentenced, the United States Supreme Court ruled in another case in Missouri, that police officers are required to get a warrant before taking an alcohol test. The only circumstances in which the police have an excuse for not getting a warrant, is when time does not permit them to do so.

The man’s lawyers argued against his conviction based on the fact, that the officers should have been able to get a warrant in his case, and that the forcible blood test results, were the result of an illegal search. His lawyer asked that his blood test results be excluded from the evidence, but the First District Court refused, and has upheld the conviction.

According to the court, judges in California have frequently allowed blood tests without a warrant, and therefore officers in this case, were acting legally when they obtained the blood test without the man’s consent. The results are admissible as evidence even if the search, as a result of the Supreme Court ruling, was illegal.

Speaking to a Denver DUI lawyer is crucial, when you are arrested for driving under influence of alcohol. On your own, you are likely to make mistakes that can jeopardize your case and result in a conviction. If you’re arrested for DUI, speak with a Denver DUI lawyer.

Court Allows Challenge of Specific Breath Testing Machine

Posted on: December 8, 2014 by in DUI
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Denver DUI defense attorneyIn an important decision in the state of Ohio, the state’s Supreme Court has ruled that DUI defendants can challenge their arrests by specifically challenging the accuracy of the testing machine that was used during the arrests.

In Ohio, the law prohibits challenges of the reliability of testing machines, but does not prevent defendants from challenging the accuracy of specific breath testing machines. The decision came in a case involving a man who was arrested for DUI in Cincinnati. The man was arrested after he allegedly blew at 0.143 on the breathalyzer. That was higher than the legally permissible level, and the man was arrested.

However, the man challenged the accuracy of the testing machine that was used in his arrest. A lower court dismissed his DUI arrest as a result of the state’s failure to hand over the previous DUI data from the breath testing machine. Now the, Supreme Court has upheld that decision.

The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that the man is allowed to challenge the accuracy of the breath test by asking for prior data results from the same breath testing machine. The Ohio Department Of Health however has not been keen on releasing the data. Health officials have presented their case in court, arguing that it is not possible to turn over years of data and that it wouldn’t be technological impossible to do so. The testing machines were purchased by the Health Department in 2009, and were distributed to police departments across the state of Ohio. If the data is handed over, and if problems with the machine are confirmed, it would impact thousands of DUI arrests in that state every year.

Breathalyzers are not free from problems. The device can suffer from a mechanical malfunction that can deliver inaccurate results. In other cases, officers may not follow the correct procedures for the administration of the test, leading to incorrect results. In all these cases, a Denver DUI defense attorney can help you fight your DUI charges, by calling into question the accuracy of the breathalyzer. If you have been arrested for DUI, speak to a Denver DUI defense attorney.

Ban on Solitary Confinement of Juvenile Offenders

Posted on: December 5, 2014 by in Criminal Defense
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Denver criminal defense lawyerThe state of New York has finally decided to impose a ban on the practice of imposing solitary confinement penalties for juvenile offenders.

The announcement was made by the Office of Corrections, which announced that it has decided to end the practice of placing juvenile offenders in solitary confinement cells. That move came after a report that was released earlier this year criticized the use of solitary confinement as a punishment for offenders below the age of 18.

The report specifically criticized such penalties as being excessive and inappropriate. The ban on solitary confinement will take effect on January 1, 2015, and a large number of offenders below the age of 18 are likely to be affected by that ruling. According to the Department of Correction, approximately 300 out of the 11,500 inmates in the city’s jails are between the ages of 16 and 17.

Denver criminal defense lawyers have found a number of states moving to ban such penalties for juvenile defenders. Those moves have come as a result of increasing evidence that seems to indicate that the minds of these juveniles are still under development, and therefore, such punishment can actually have a detrimental effect on their personality. In one study that was recently published in the Iowa Law Review, researchers analyzed MRI scans of juvenile offenders, and tracked the development of the brain from childhood through adulthood. The scientists found during the analysis that adolescent brains are not as developed as previously believed.

Based on their research, the scientists have concluded that teenagers may have the ability to differentiate between right and wrong, but do not have sufficient impulse control. That means that they are less likely to be able to stop themselves from performing an action even though that they know that it is wrong. Denver criminal defense lawyers believe that solitary confinement to penalize such offenders is not only ineffective, but could also be dangerous because it changes the person’s brain development.

Teens Less Likely to Take Marijuana DUI Risks Seriously

Posted on: December 3, 2014 by in DUI
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Denver DUI attorneyTeenage motorists are much less likely to take the DUI arrest risks after consuming marijuana seriously, compared to the DUI risks involving alcohol. In a recent study, most of the teenagers reported that they believed use of alcohol led to dangerous practices like drunk driving, while the use of marijuana only harmed the person’s relationship with authority figures.

The teenagers in the study reported that they found that the use of alcohol was tied to a much higher risk of DUI. They did not seem to be as concerned about the risks of DUI after consuming pot. Clearly, teenagers underestimate the DUI arrests involving marijuana.

Denver DUI attorney have seen many efforts to regain teenagers about the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol, and the risks of a DUI arrest when they drive after drinking alcohol. The consequences of an underage DUI in Colorado are very serious. However, there are also consequences for your DUI record when you’re arrested after having smoked pot.

Data clearly indicates to Denver DUI attorneys that the number of teenagers smoking pot is on the increase. An overwhelming majority of teenagers in the study reported that they had consumed alcohol, while as many as 60% admitted that they had used pot. In fact, according to one study by Students against Destructive Decisions, as many of 19% of teenagers across the United States have operated a car while under the influence of marijuana. In comparison, only 13% reported operating a car after consuming alcohol. Teenagers seem to be much more comfortable about driving a car after smoking pot. With the legalization of recreational marijuana in Colorado, those numbers are likely to increase, even though the law does not include underage users.

Even with the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, it continues to remain illegal for persons under the age of 21 to sell or possess marijuana. The only exemption is the city of Denver, where the age limit is 18. Violators could face fines as well as prison time.


Fingerprinting Backlog Hampers Attempts to Solve Criminal Cases

Posted on: December 1, 2014 by in Criminal Defense
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Criminal defense attorney in DenverOne of the country’s largest police departments is suffering from a severe and massive backlog of fingerprinting evidence. As a result, thousands of cases involving burglaries, thefts and other crimes continue to remain unsolved.

The Los Angeles Police Department admits that the number of unsolved cases involving unanalyzed fingerprint evidence has more than doubled over the past couple of years. The Police Department is trying to processing fingerprinting more efficiently. The Department for instance, is getting officers to collect evidence at some crime scenes, instead of waiting for analysts to do so. However, in spite of those efforts, the backlog has actually increased. In 2012, the finger printing backlog at the Department was approximately 2,200 cases, and that number more than doubled to 5,455 cases in 2014.

Part of the reason for the backlog is that many of the finger prints are now useless. The three-year deadline for prosecuting offenders has passed in many of the cases. Other officials at the Police Department blame a severe staffing shortage of staff at the Police Department, for the backlog. There is a need for more analysts, and the officers say that they are working on this. Currently, the finger printing analysis division has 60 employees, which is at least 35 lower than full capacity

The backlog has resulted in thousands of property crime cases, including burglaries, Shoplifting, and thefts being unresolved.

Property crimes are those that affect another’s property. The kind of crimes, that are covered under the category of property crimes include burglary, robbery, theft, the destruction of someone else’s property via arson and vandalism, and other crimes. Criminal defense attorneys in Denver find that many persons make the mistake of treating a property crime charge as a minor charge.

Not all property crimes are treated as misdemeanors. Some are also treated as felonies. A shoplifting conviction, for instance, may seem like a minor matter to you, but it can be included in your criminal record, and can turn up on criminal screening checks and background checks. That can seriously affect your ability to get a job in the future, especially in certain industries like accounting, retail, and the financial sector.

Speak to a criminal defense attorney in Denver about the charges you face, to determine what kind of defenses can be used to get your charges dismissed, or lowered.

Leaked Nude Celeb Photos Raise Questions about Sex Crime Charges

Posted on: November 28, 2014 by in Sex Crimes
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Denver criminal defense lawyersA number of female celebrities recently had their phones and computers hacked into, and nude pictures of these celebrities were released on the Internet. The Federal Bureau of Investigations is investigating what kind of charges can be filed against the persons responsible for the sharing of the images.

According to FBI representatives, there are many charges that could be filed. The most obvious crime that these people have committed is a violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Denver criminal defense lawyers believe that these people could face charges of wire fraud. There are also violations of privacy laws, as well as copyright law involved here.

However, what Denver criminal defense lawyers find more interesting is the possibility of charges of sex crimes against children, especially if any of these nude photographs involved celebrities below the age of 18. So far, it seems that most of the photographs involved celebrities above the age of 18. However, photographs of United States Olympic Gymnast McKayla Maroney are also available online. Maroney only turned 18 recently. Her images were posted on some websites, and recently administrators at Reddit informed the users of a subreddit site that those leaked images could be considered child porn because Maroney was below 18 at the time. Reddit has told the users of the site to remove pictures of the gymnast immediately.

Obviously, charges of wire fraud, and violations of privacy are serious, but the penalties that are attached to charges of child porn are very stringent. For example, in the case of the leaked pictures of Maroney, any person who downloaded her images could immediately be guilty of possession of child porn. The sharing of nude images of the gymnast could also be considered a violation of the law.

The use of social media makes it easy for people to share questionable images that could actually get them in trouble. For instance, on Twitter, if a person retweets an image of a celebrity below the age of 18, he could be violating the law. However, simply retweeting a link that features the image, may not necessarily qualify as distribution of child porn.

Hacking of Photos Does Not Constitute Sex Crime

Posted on: November 26, 2014 by in Sex Crimes
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Denver criminal defense attorneyThe term “sex crimes” can include a vast and wide category of crimes that can range all the way from a sexual relationship with a person below the age of legal consent, to the production and distribution of child pornography. However, the recent celebrity photo scandal in which thousands of digital images of celebrities were leaked and released on the Internet does not constitute a sex crime, even though the pictures depicted the celebrities in the nude.

Recently, Jennifer Lawrence in an interview, alleged that the hacking which involved many of her own pictures too, constituted a sex crime. Lawrence, however, is wrong. The hacking of her nude pictures, while it might have been emotionally distressing to her, does not meet the criteria for a sex crime.

That doesn’t mean that the leak of those photographs cannot have other types of charges apply to them. For instance, Denver criminal defense attorneys believe that wiretapping, or invasion of privacy charges can be filed against the persons who were responsible for hacking these computers and distributing the celebrities’ nude pictures on the Internet. However, distribution of those pictures, even if they were nude pictures, does not constitute the distribution of child pornography, creation of child pornography, inappropriate touching of a minor, or the wide variety of other crimes that constitute sex crimes in Colorado.

The distribution of nude photographs in some situations and in some states has been specifically defined as a crime, if the distribution takes place without the permission of the person in the pictures. For instance, New Jersey has an invasion of privacy law that allows charges to be filed against persons distributing nude pictures of other persons without their permission. Typically, those kinds of charges are seen in revenge- porn cases, in which a person in a spurned relationship, posts pictures of his ex on the Internet without her permission, in an attempt to humiliate her. If you are facing sex crime charges, consult with a Denver criminal defense attorney immediately.

Mesa County Records Highest BAC Levels in 2013

Posted on: November 24, 2014 by in DUI
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Denver DUI lawyerAmong all the counties in Colorado in 2013, it was drivers in Mesa County who managed to rack up the highest blood-alcohol concentration levels last year. That information comes from a drunk driving prevention program in Colorado, which confirmed that drivers in Mesa county who were arrested for DUI in 2013 reported higher blood-alcohol levels than any other county last year.

The statistics came from the Persistence Drunk Driver Program,. According to the website, the average blood-alcohol level content for drivers arrested for DUI in Mesa County was .176. That is more than twice the legally permissible level of 0.08%.

Drunk driving is a serious offense in Colorado. If you are arrested for DUI, get in touch with a Denver DUI lawyer as quickly as possible. A person who is arrested for drunk driving in Colorado faces two charges possible charges of drunk driving. He could be charged with DUI or (driving under the influence of alcohol.) These charges are filed if the driver registers at .08% or higher. He could also be charged with a DWAI (Driving While Ability Impaired) charge. These charges are filed when the motorist has registered at .05% or higher, but less than .08%.

Both of these charges come with severe consequences. If you are charged with DUI in Colorado, it is not just the criminal case that you have to worry about, but also the hearing conducted by the Colorado Department Of Motor Vehicles.

The Colorado Department Of Motor Vehicles will conduct its own hearing into your DUI arrest, and may decide to suspend or revoke your license. The criminal case is separate from the DMV hearing. Losing your license is not a minor matter, and can severely impact your ability to go to work, to school, or go about your other activities.

If you are facing a DUI arrest, get in touch with a Denver DUI lawyer immediately, to avoid getting your license suspended or revoked. A DMV hearing is not something that you want to face all alone without the help of an attorney.