120 S. Olive Ave., Suite 402
West Palm Beach, FL 33401

Category Archives: Criminal Defense

Federal Conviction, Criminal Records and Expungement

Federal Conviction, Criminal Records and Expungement

Depending on a state, a job applicant may not have to reveal any or some types of potentially damaging information, such as arrests not resulting in convictions or convictions for minor matters. Some states have procedures to judicially “erase” a criminal record. A criminal defense attorney can help determine whether you may be eligible to get a conviction sealed, expunged or otherwise legally minimized. Criminal records are technically public records, which means that anyone can access them. Public records are those records which are available for public inspection. These records are often offered for free to the public for review at the location where they are stored. In other cases, they may be available for a small fee. Public records are often named according to where they are kept, or… […]

| Tagged , , | Comments Off on Federal Conviction, Criminal Records and Expungement

What is Illegal Search and Seizure?

What is Illegal Search and Seizure?

The topic of illegal search and seizure seems to be creating a lot of buzz lately as the exact law and definition of what makes a search and seizure illegal is in flux. The law is changing as recent court decisions are having an impact on police conduct. Law enforcement officers have a new code of conduct when it comes to searching you or your property. The Fourth Amendment usually limits the amount of authority police have over searching you or your property but several precedents have been set by court decisions that have greatly altered the dynamics of the law. Search and Seizure The Fourth Amendment in the U.S. Constitution protects citizens from what is called “unreasonable search and seizure” by government or otherwise authoritative figures. The Amendment does… […]

| Tagged , , | Comments Off on What is Illegal Search and Seizure?

When Do You Need A Lawyer

When Do You Need A Lawyer

Sometimes the need for a lawyer is a no-brainer: when you’ve been served with a lawsuit, or when you’re arrested or charged with a crime. But keep in mind that people hire lawyers for advice and expertise all of the time, in all kinds of situations. While you may be able to get through a legal problem without hiring a lawyer, you should always remember that when you represent yourself, you might have a “fool for a client,” as the saying goes. Many problems have a legal dimension and require a lawyer’s help. The following questions and answers can serve as a guidance when searching for legal advise, provided by American Bar organization. Are There Specific Cases When I Should See a Lawyer? Yes, some matters are best handled by… […]

| Tagged | Comments Off on When Do You Need A Lawyer

Criminal Intent, Malice and Motives

Criminal Intent, Malice and Motives

Generally, two elements are required in order to find a person guilty of a crime: an overt criminal act and criminal intent. The requirement of an Overt Act  is fulfilled when the defendant purposely, knowingly, or recklessly does something prohibited by law. Criminal Intent Criminal intent must be formed before the act, and it must unite with the act. It need not exist for any given length of time before the act; the intent and the act can be as instantaneous as simultaneous or successive thoughts. A jury may be permitted to infer criminal intent from facts that would lead a reasonable person to believe that it existed. For example, the intent to commit Burglary may be inferred from the accused’s possession of tools for picking locks. Criminal intent may… […]

| Tagged , | Comments Off on Criminal Intent, Malice and Motives

Criminal Defense Attorney Selection Process

Criminal Defense Attorney Selection Process

If you have a specific legal problem, don’t delay, consult a criminal defense lawyer who can help protect your good name and reputation. There are over 6,000 lawyers in Palm Beach County and less than 1,000 of them specialize in criminal law. A criminal defense attorney is a unique breed of lawyer – unlike anyone else. How do you choose which criminal defense attorney is right for you? Below is a guide that will help you make an informed decision, offered by Attorneys.com Initial Meeting With Your Criminal Defense Attorney Come to the meeting prepared. Some criminal defense attorneys will ask you to fill out a questionnaire and submit it ahead of the meeting. Also, gather together any documents the lawyer asks to see. Some documents that will help the… […]

| Tagged | Comments Off on Criminal Defense Attorney Selection Process

Federal Constitutional Rights In Criminal Proceedings

Federal Constitutional Rights In Criminal Proceedings

Fourth Amendment “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” The Fourth Amendment provides general protections against arbitrary search and seizure of persons and property. While there are many exceptions to the Fourth Amendment “warrant requirement,” it does provide broad protection of the general public from inappropriate police conduct. Fifth Amendment “No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval… […]

| Tagged | Comments Off on Federal Constitutional Rights In Criminal Proceedings

Your Legal Rights: Remain Silent and Have An Attorney Present

Your Legal Rights: Remain Silent and Have An Attorney Present

Investigatory and Accusatory Police Procedure The U.S. Constitution, the Federal Rules and the federal court system’s interpretations of both provide guidance and procedural canons that law enforcement must follow. Failure to follow such procedure may result in the suppression of evidence or the release of an arrested suspect. Substantive due process requires police to make criminal defendants aware of their rights prior to the defendant making any statements if the government intends to use those statements as evidence against the defendant. For example, law enforcement must ensure that the defendant understands the right to remain silent and the right to have an attorney present, as the Fifth and Sixth Amendments respectively provide. The defendant must knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily waive those rights in order for the government to use any… […]

| Tagged , | Comments Off on Your Legal Rights: Remain Silent and Have An Attorney Present

The Weight Of Fingerprints in Criminal Cases

The Weight Of Fingerprints in Criminal Cases

Fingerprint evidence, although sometimes not as high-profile as other high-tech crime-solving methods like DNA typing, is still very much used in criminal investigations and cases. While the principle that no two people can have the same fingerprints cannot be scientifically validated, fingerprint evidence is generally considered to be highly reliable and is particularly accessible to juries: You don’t need a Ph.D. or a scientific lecture on genetics to understand that your own fingers contain a contour map of ridges and whorls that is completely unique. Matching Fingerprints Fingerprint evidence rests on two basic principles: A person’s “friction ridge patterns” (the swirled skin on their fingertips) don’t change over their lifetimes. No two people have the same pattern of friction ridges. Even identical twins have different fingerprints. Police officers use fingerprints… […]

| Tagged | Comments Off on The Weight Of Fingerprints in Criminal Cases

Facing a Criminal Charge

Facing a Criminal Charge

A criminal charge is a formal accusation made by a governmental authority asserting that somebody has committed a crime. A charging document, which contains one or more criminal charges or counts, can take several forms, including: complaint information indictment The charging document is what generally starts a criminal case in court, but the procedure by which somebody is charged with a crime, and what happens when somebody has been charged, varies from country to country. Any person who is facing a criminal charge, no matter how minor, will benefit from consulting a competent criminal defense lawyer. Even if the lawyer is not retained to provide representation in court, a consultation will help a criminal defendant understand the nature of the charges filed, available defenses, what plea bargains are likely to… […]

| Tagged , | Comments Off on Facing a Criminal Charge

What Happens After Arrest

There is a difference between being arrested and being detained. “Arrested” means you have been taken into custody and can’t leave. For example, if you’ve been handcuffed and placed in the back of a police cruiser, you’ve probably been arrested, even though the officer didn’t say, “You’re under arrest.” This is because you can’t leave the car without getting into more trouble. You can be “detained” for a short period of time if a police officer believes you were involved in a crime or are about to commit a crime. Few people understand the criminal justice process. The following provides an overview of what you can expect if you are arrested in Florida. Posting Bond In most cases, you are entitled to a reasonable bond set by the court. Generally,… […]

| Tagged , , | Comments Off on What Happens After Arrest