Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

Baton Rouge Criminal Defense Law Blog

What is capital punishment in Louisiana?

Serious crimes mean serious punishments. For many, murder is considered the most serious and heinous crime, making it an extremely overwhelming and stressful situation for those facing a murder charge. Being accused of murder could significantly alter the life of the defendant, even if he or she is not convicted. Because of this, it is important to understand the consequences that could follow these charges and how best to pursue a criminal defense immediately following allegations.

Louisiana, like the majority of other states, views capital punishment as the appropriate sentence for those convicted of the most serious crimes, such as murder. In 2013, there were 32 states utilizing the death penalty. While these numbers have shrunk over the past several years as states abolished these practices, the state of Louisiana still utilizes the death penalty.

Understanding underage DUI laws in Louisiana

As we get older, our responsibilities tend to increase. At the age of 16, residents in Louisiana and elsewhere are entrusted to operate a motor vehicle. At the age of 21, individuals can legally consume alcohol. While there are milestones for certain privileges, this does not mean that everyone will follow the rules that often come along with them. Underage drinking unfortunately occurs, and when teenagers decide to get behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming alcohol, they not only put lives at risks but also risk facing criminal charges.

Age 21 or not, drunk driving charges are considered to be serious. If convicted, individuals could endure criminal penalties for the act. Nonetheless, those facing underage DUI charges will face different consequences when compared to those 21-years-old and older. This is because there are different intoxication standards for those under the age of 21.

Prosecutors charged you with assault but can they prove it?

If you've been living on a Louisiana college campus for any length of time and have participated in the social scene, you've likely been to a party or two where things got a bit out of hand and a fight broke out. Perhaps you've even been involved in a similar incident yourself. When disputes occur, especially if those involved have been drinking alcohol, people sometimes say things they later regret. In fact, someone whose temper is flaring may even threaten to file assault charges against someone else.

Maybe that's what happened to you but you know you were merely defending yourself when you threw a punch. Before you knew what was happening, police were there, telling you to put your hands out so they could put handcuffs on you. Your next minutes were spent riding in the back of a police car to a county jail. Officials have since informed you that you will face assault charges in court. However, you stand by your assertion that you were acting in self-defense. Is avoiding conviction possible?

Baton Rouge woman facing contractor fraud charges

When an individual is accused of a crime that relates to his or her job, this can tarnish his or her reputation. In addition to facing penalties for criminal allegations, a person could endure harm to their personal and professional reputation based on the allegations faced. White collar crimes may seem less serious than other crimes, such as drug and violent crimes; however, crimes of fraud are considered to be very serious and can carry harsh penalties if an individual is convicted.

According to recent reports, a Baton Rouge woman was recently arrested based on allegations of fraud. Based on reports, the woman supposedly claimed to be a licensed contractor, failing to complete cabinet repairs that stemmed from a flood in August 2016.

Initiating a defense against fraud allegations

Fraud is often considered to be when an individual intentionally misrepresents a material fact, and with this knowledge of falsity, induces another to act, causing that person to suffer injury or damages. These acts of deceit or trickery can be very damaging to those that fall victim to these crimes; however, those accused of committing such a crime can suffer damages to their personal and professional life, as many of these criminal allegations stem from a person's role or position in the workplace.

White collar crimes have the tendency, like most crimes, to carry serious consequences. And depending on where the supposed crime occurred and what career a person holds, an allegation of fraud can be very detrimental even if the accused is not convicted. Thus, it is vital that defendants in Baton Rouge and elsewhere understand their rights and criminal defense strategies available to them.

Woman faces attempted murder charges after grocery store incident

Misunderstandings between people in Louisiana occur all the time. Sometimes they are minor bumps in the road of life, and people quickly get over them. Other times they are more serious, leading to verbal arguments in which one or both sides feels angry or insulted. And, sometimes, they cumulate in one person accusing the other of causing them physical harm in an argument.

A Louisiana woman is facing charges of attempted murder after allegedly stabbing another woman at an area grocery store. The woman who was stabbed claimed the accused started a fight in the grocery store after the woman's sister had phoned the police on her claiming she broke into her house.

What are the effects of a blood alcohol content level of 0.08?

Louisiana is a state known for its celebrations. Whether it is Christmas, New Year's Eve or Mardi Gras, people will toast to the season with a drink and a cheer.

However, it is important that those who choose to drink this time of year do so responsibly. This is because if a person's blood alcohol concentration is at 0.08 or above, that person could be charged with drunk driving. Having a BAC that high can be dangerous, as it can affect a person's ability to concentrate. It can also cause short-term memory loss and make it difficult for the driver to maintain the proper speed. In addition, a person's ability to process information is compromised when their BAC is that high, and their perception may be impaired.

What should I do or not do at a DUI checkpoint in Louisiana?

You may have noticed that police show increased presence on Louisiana roadways at certain times of year. That is because drunk driving crashes tend to spike around particular holidays like Fourth of July weekend, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day.

If you get caught in a long line of standstill traffic and realize the holdup is due to a police checkpoint, not only might you be late in reaching your destination; you might wind up facing a DUI charge if things don't go your way when it's your turn at the checkpoint.

What are some possible defenses to drug possession charges?

Sometimes a person in Louisiana is just in the wrong place at the wrong time when a crime they are not involved in allegedly takes place. This can be the case with certain drug offenses, such as drug possession. In situations like this, it is good to have an understanding of what possible defenses a person may have. Of course, this is just a general overview of drug possession defenses -- an attorney can assess a person's case to determine which defenses are appropriate.

One defense is that the drug charges came from an unlawful search and seizure. For example, if police made a lawful traffic stop, and drugs in the vehicle were in "plain view" this would not violate the Fourth Amendment. However, if police broke into the trunk of the vehicle with a crowbar without the permission of the accused, this may violate the Fourth Amendment. If this is the case, then the drugs found cannot be admitted as evidence in a person's case and it is possible that the charges against the person will be dropped.

Police officer accused of payroll fraud, falsifying tickets

Police officers are important members of the community, upholding the law and making Louisiana a safe place to live. Therefore, when a police officer is accused of a crime, it can have a very detrimental effect both in the life of the officer and his or her reputation in the community.

A Louisiana State Police officer has recently been suspended from his job after being accused of payroll fraud and falsifying tickets. He allegedly made misrepresentations on his timesheets and he also allegedly issued false traffic tickets. According to reports in 2016 the officer earned $240,000, $147,000 of which was compensation for overtime. However, reportedly investigators saw him at his house during the times he reported as being at work for shifts lasting as much as 16 hours.

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