Content Related To 'criminal-law'

Before Arrest : the DWI Traffic Stop

Lea en español Last update: Aug. 29, 2008 Reasonable Suspicion and Probable Cause Contrary to popular belief, police officers are not required to have probable cause to pull over a person. All they must have is a reasonable suspicion that a crime has been or is about to be committed. This is a lower standard […]

After Arrest for DUI/DWI: The Legal Process

Lea en español Last update: Aug. 29, 2008 Typically after a DWI arrest, a suspect is taken to jail and given a chance to perform more sobriety tests or repeat the ones conducted at the roadside. Like the tests at the roadside, the suspect may choose whether to perform them, except in the case of […]

Electronic Surveillance

Lea en español Using electronic devices to keep surveillance over a person may implicate the investigated individual’s Fourth Amendment rights. One form of electronic surveillance is attaching a “bug” to a person’s telephone line or to a phone booth and recording the phone conversation. Courts have held that this practice constitutes a search under the […]

Search & Seizure Law

Lea en español The 4th Amendment protects two fundamental liberty interests: the right to privacy and the right to freedom from arbitrary invasion. A search occurs when a government employee or agent violates a reasonable expectation of privacy. A seizure is the interference with an individual’s possessory interest in property. The property’s owner must have […]

COMMENTARY: Supreme Court Averts Danger by Disallowing the Death Penalty for Child Rape

by Jeff Stanglin, J.D. July 3, 2008 The Supreme Court has undoubtedly lurched toward conservatism in the past 20 years, but death penalty cases have largely been an anomaly. Just in the past six years, the Court has banned the execution of juveniles and mentally retarded individuals, ruling that such executions violate the Eighth Amendment’s […]

Forfeiture

Lea en español Forfeiture, the government seizure of property connected to illegal activity, has been a major weapon in the federal government’s war on drugs since the 1980s. The U.S. Department of Justice established the Assets Forfeiture Fund in 1985 and seized $27 million from drug-related forfeitures that year. As the dollar values of seized […]

Defenses to Crimes

Lea en español The defenses raised in criminal cases generally fall into two categories: you did not commit the crime, or you committed the crime, but should not be held responsible. Defenses Based on a Claim of Innocence The most powerful defense when you did not commit the crime is the establishment of a solid […]

Fundamental Rights of the Accused

Lea en español 5th Amendment Rights Under the 5th Amendment, you have the right to refuse to answer questions, or make statements, that might incriminate you. This applies at any stage of a criminal investigation or prosecution. The 5th Amendment also contains the Due Process Clause, which protects you from suffering certain consequences without due […]

Criminal Law Types

Websites General HG: Criminal Law – Links to criminal code for all 50 states. Also links to international resources, articles, and other information. Penal Law – Comprehensive online digest of American criminal law. Links to statutes, cases, and analysis. Theories of Criminal Law – Excellent essay from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Types of crimes […]

White Collar Crime

Lea en español White-collar crime generally involves financially motivated offenses perpetrated by business and government employees or officials. The crimes are not violent, and are usually committed by persons in whom some level of trust or autonomy is placed. They frequently cause significant losses for companies, investors and employees. The Types of White-Collar Crimes Fraud.By […]

NJ Internet Sexual Predator Law Bans Some Sex Offenders From the Internet

by Laura Smith Jan. 4, 2008 New Jersey is the latest state to pass laws dealing with the volatile mixture of computers, the Internet and convicted sex offenders. The state, along with Florida and Nevada, has made it a crime for some convicted sex offenders to use the Internet. The law affects sex offenders who […]

Texas Inmate Plans for Freedom as DNA Exonerations Continue in Texas

by the GetLegal editorial staff Jan. 3, 2008 Charles Chatman has spent the last 27 years in prison, having been convicted of rape and sentenced to life in prison in 1981 at the age of 20. Now 47, Chatman is expected to be released, making him the 15th person in Dallas County to be wrongfully […]

Misdemeanor Crimes

Lea en español As a general rule, a misdemeanor is a criminal offense that carries a penalty of up to one year in detention. In most instances, the incarceration is in a county jail or similar facility, rather than a prison. Most misdemeanor convictions also require the payment of a fine. Probation, community service, and […]

Traffic Tickets

Lea en español Though many individuals may consider them little more than a nuisance, traffic citations are generally considered to be criminal offenses. The fines for certain types of infractions can be substantial and can lead to significant increases in the cost of auto insurance premiums. In some circumstances, traffic convictions can add points to […]

Expungement

Lea en español A prior criminal record can haunt you for years, making it difficult to get a job, obtain credit, or find a decent place to live. Under certain circumstances, however, you can expunge a prior arrest or conviction, so that, for all practical purposes, it no longer exists. Qualifying for Expungement Though the […]

The Late Claude Howard Jones’ Innocence Hangs on a Single Strand of Hair

Lea en español by Laura Smith Sept. 11, 2007 A 1-inch piece of hair is proving to be a Texas-size bone of contention. The hair: Authorities are not sure whose head it came from. The bone: Some criminal justice groups want the hair for DNA testing, and a district attorney doesn’t want to give it […]

Death Penalty Losing Support as Science Uncovers Flaws

Lea en español by Paul Goetz June 13, 2007 The thought of being sentenced to serve time for a crime you didn’t commit certainly can cause uneasiness and fear. Add the possibility of facing the death penalty as an innocent person and your mind may question whether the system we have in place needs some […]

Criminal Law

Lea en español Learn about some specific types of criminal offenses. We all make mistakes. When we do, it is important not to make things worse through ignorance of the law or of our rights. If you find yourself facing criminal investigation or prosecution because of choices you have made, the more information you have […]