Penalties For Drunk Driving

February 20, 2010 by Maricopa County Court  
Filed under Criminal Court, DUI

Gone are those days when the local policeman would gently give you a warning and send you home if you were stopped for drunk driving. The maximum punishment in those good old days would be a ticket or a fine. However, with alarming rate of drunk driving accidents, law enforcement are taking a very strict view on drunk driving. The penalties too have become serious and will continue to be so.

If you have been drinking and driving and you get stopped by a police, there is no question that you would taken to jail at least for a night to sober up. If this is your first offence, you will be warned, a proper report will be created and you are let off. However, the penalties for subsequent arrests for drunk driving would be far more serious. Depending on the level of alcohol in your blood, you will be punished. Many states across the US require you to submit the blood alcohol tests. If you refuse, then you are faced with a higher penalty.

It is without a doubt that if you are arrested for drunk driving, you would be spending money for a court case and you might even end up losing your driving license. At times, you might be forced to have an ignition interlock device installed in your car so that you would be stopped from driving if you have been drinking.

If you are a habitual drinker and keep getting arrested, your vehicle may be impounded. You have been drinking and have a child under the age of 16 with you while driving, then you would have to face a child endangerment charges.

Under the circumstances that you lose your driving license, you will have to undergo an alcohol assessment interview. The counselor who assesses you will recommend the treatment. If you do not follow the treatment, you might never get your license back.

With laws getting extremely strict with regard to drunk driving, there is no way you will be able to beat the rap. If you do not want to be convicted to drunk driving then you should completely avoid driving after drinking.

Death Penalty – The Details

October 7, 2009 by Maricopa County Court  
Filed under Criminal Court

By Joseph Devine –

Only used in 38 out of 50 states, the death penalty is one of the forms of capital punishment. Texas does have the death penalty available as a capital punishment, but there are a number of qualifications that you must meet before you can be assigned a capital punishment. Anyone who is up for getting a capital punishment must be at least 17 years of age or older.

Only people that have committed a capital crime can be given the death penalty. A capital felony is a crime that is committed on the highest degree level possible. This includes murder of a police officer, multiple murders, murdering of a child under 6, or murder during a prison escape. This is just a small list of the many people that can and are sentenced to the death penalty on a daily basis. The death penalty can be a very serious conviction and many people need just the right criminal lawyer to take care of it.

Each case is normally looked at on a case by case basis. The judge will usually give you a trial which will either be a bench trial or a jury trial. With a bench trial, the judge will make the decision to whether the person is guilty or not. They judge will also make a ruling to what punishment the person will get. A jury trial, means that the jury will make the decision or guilty or not and the judge will rule on the punishment. You always have the choice to speak with your lawyer and decide what type of trial you want. They each have their positives and negatives that you could understand if you were in a trial for capital punishment.

Appeals normally go through the Court of Appeals, Texas Supreme Court, US Circuit Court of Appeals, and finally reach the US Supreme Court. Each of these courts will make a ruling to whether or not the person is guilty. Once the ruling has been made over the US Supreme Court, the trial is over. The person will then be put on death row and will wait for his sentence to be carried out.

The court system requires that the person have exhausted all types of appeals before the death sentence be carried out. The person will have to have an attorney before anything can ever take place. The court also requires that you have someone representing you before you will go into a trial.

If you are looking for a criminal lawyer to represent you, contact for more help.

Joseph Devine

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What To Expect If You Are Charged With a Crime

November 11, 2008 by Maricopa County Court  
Filed under Getting Arrested

By Jody Ehrhardt -

Although most people never expect to be charged with a crime, there can come a time when that can happen. These types of charges can range form warrants being issued for aid traffic tickets to individuals filing lawsuits against you. The best time to prepare for being charged with a crime is before it ever happens.

Since lawsuits and arrests can move quickly, it is best to understand the basic events that lead up to and constitute being charged with a crime prior to the being charged. If you are knowledgeable about the events beforehand, the process can go easier and hopefully, be less intimidating.

No matter which type of crime you are charged with, the proceedings will usually happen in a predetermined way. First, a warrant will put for your arrest. If a warrant is issued against you, you will usually be notified of the warrant by being served. Being served means that a police officer will locate you and deliver your warrant papers in person. On rare occasions, a person is arrested before being served with a warrant. In these cases, the arresting officer must show the warrant papers within a reasonable amount of time after the arrest has been made.

After you have been arrested, you will be taken to the police station to be booked. Being booked means that you will be fingerprinted and a file will be opened regarding your case. After being booked, you will generally spend a short amount of time in jail while you await your initial hearing and arrange payment for bail.

While you are in jail, you are allowed to contact an attorney. Any person charged with a crime has the right to seek legal representation. It is very important that you at least meet with an attorney before your initial hearing. If you cannot afford an attorney, or you have not chosen an attorney yet, the court can and must appoint a lawyer for you.

During the initial hearing, you will be asked to make a plea of guilty, not guilty or no contest. Your attorney will advise you as to which plea is most favorable for your situation. Even if you are guilty you may opt to plead not guilty. Some defendant’s choose to do this if they feel that the prosecutor does not have enough evidence against them to prove their case. If you plead not guilty, you will be given a trial in which it is the responsibility of the prosecution to prove your guilt. If you plead guilty or no contest, you will not be given a trail, rather you will go straight to a sentencing hearing.

If you are proven not guilty at your trial, you will be released from custody. If you are found guilty, you will be given a sentencing hearing.

A sentencing hearing is a hearing that allows all parties involved in your case to express the facts involving your case that may affect your sentence. These parties could include your accuser, yourself or persons who are defending your case.

After the hearing the judge will consider all evidence presented and then make a decision regarding your sentencing. Your sentencing could include additional jail time, monetary fines, community service or mandatory treatment programs. Depending on the severity of your crime, the evidence against you and your initial plea, the degree of sentencing could vary greatly. For smaller crimes, sentencing may only include a small fine and no jail time.

To insure that all of your rights are protected and that you receive the least sentencing possible, it is important that you hire a competent attorney and become knowledgeable about all of your rights.

Jody Ehrhardt writes for]Lawyer Vista, a website where you can find criminal lawyers in your city or state.

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