Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

July 2012 Archives

Media coverage could compromise jury impartiality

In the criminal law system, every defendant is innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. In highly publicized cases in which the defendant has already been convicted, so to speak, in the court of public opinion, this basic assumption becomes especially important. The ability to have a fair trial, presided over by an impartial judge, heard by a fair, open-minded jury, is paramount. When excessive media coverage of a local murder makes it hard to find 12 unbiased individuals, defense attorneys start thinking about a change in venue.

Once-abandoned statewide DWI database potentially back in the works

In 2004, a project known as the Integrated Criminal Justice Information System (ICJIS) was proposed, developed, and abandoned. With its failure came a corresponding inability to track DWIs across counties in the state of Louisiana. Prosecutors, members of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and thousands of citizens were disappointed.

Illegal or improper police activity can provide grounds for DWI challenge, P.2

In our previous post, we began discussing the topic of illegal police behavior, and how this can provide various grounds for challenging DWI charges. We already noted the possibility of challenging such charges based on an improper stop or arrest. DWI challenges can also be based on an improper blood or breath test.

Illegal or improper police activity can provide grounds for DWI challenge, P.1

Last week, a 27-year-old police officer in Louisiana resigned after being accused of stealing an iPhone from the scene of a DWI crash. According to a police spokesman in Baton Rouge, the phone was not in the car when the driver was released from jail. The tracking feature on the device later showed that the phone name had been changed to the name of the officer now suspected of stealing the device.

Shreveport dentist sentenced on two counts of Medicaid fraud

Conviction on charges of Medicaid fraud have resulted in five years of probation, including two years of home incarceration, for a Shreveport dentist. The dentist was found guilty in January on two counts of Medicaid fraud. In addition to probation and home incarceration, the dentist will have fines, restitution and community service to perform.

Double homicide at Baton Rouge apartment sets investigators to work

In our last post, we noted that homicides have increased in East Baton Rouge Parish. Although authorities aren't clear what is behind the increase in homicides, some common have pointed to the high number of domestic cases.

Homicides increase in first half of 2012 in East Baton Rouge Parish

Ten more homicides have reportedly occurred within the first six months of 2012 in East Baton Rouge Parish compared to the same period last year. As of Saturday, the number reached 50. Fourteen of the homicides occurred outside the city limits and are being investigated by the Sheriff's Office. Thirty five are being investigated by the Baton Rouge Police Department.

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Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

8048 One Calais Avenue | Suite A | Baton Rouge, LA 70809-3483 | Phone: 225-250-1812 | Fax: 225-769-0195 | Baton Rouge Criminal Law Office