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Derry, NH Criminal Defense Blog

How DUI affects child custody

There are many reasons why you do not want to get a DUI conviction. It can become much more difficult to get a job, and you may lose your license for up to one year if you are not careful. 

DUI arrest can stay with you for years. In the event you end up with a divorce later in life, a DUI conviction can play a role in the proceedings, especially if you have children. A judge needs to look at a child custody agreement that is in the best interests of the kids. Therefore, you need to fight DUI charges now not just to retain your job but also to continue seeing your kids. 

Domestic violence encompasses many forms

Domestic violence cases involve people who live in the same home or family members. Instances of domestic violence can also occur between former partners who share a child or who were once in a relationship. It is imperative that you fully understand exactly what comprises domestic abuse so that you can avoid being accused of it. If something does happen and you are charged with domestic abuse, this information might affect your defense strategies.

Domestic violence comes in many forms. Many people focus on the physical manifestation of it, but it is possible to also inflict emotional, psychological or economic abuse. Some domestic abuse can involve sexual abuse. Cyberstalking or traditional stalking are also sometimes part of these cases.

Reasonable suspicion is vital in drunk driving cases

This Easter weekend, people are going to head out to gatherings with family members and friends. Making sure that you have a suitable way to get home is imperative if the gathering will include alcoholic beverage offerings. One thing that you shouldn't ever do is assume that you are sober enough to make it home after you've had a couple of drinks.

Alcohol can decrease your inhibitions. You might feel like you can drive safely, but the actions you take behind the wheel might provide a different story. There are specific tell-tale signs of drunk driving that police officers look for when they are patrolling. With this being a holiday weekend, they might be paying closer attention than usual.

Not all criminal cases are eligible for a jury trial

One of the fundamental rights of a person who is charged with a crime is that they can have a jury trial. What some people might not realize is that this doesn't necessarily apply to everyone. There are some cases in which a defendant might not be able to have one, but they may have a bench trial instead. A bench trial is one in which each side presents their case to the judge. That judge then decides the outcome of the case.

Typically, a person facing a felony will be able to have a jury trial because felony charges are associated with incarceration periods of more than six months. The right to a trial before your peers is only guaranteed to serious offenses, which has been classified as one that has a possible incarceration of at least that period. This has been upheld by the Supreme Court.

Compliance with parole terms can keep you out of more trouble

A person who is on parole has to lead a law-abiding life or they run the risk of being placed back in prison. For many, the terms of the program are hard to live with. This is done on purpose because the courts want to ensure that the individuals will be productive citizens when they are done with their sentence.

Some of the rules of the parole program might seem harsh. For example, you can't just quit your job because you don't like it. Having stable employment is usually a requirement of the program. The same is true for housing. You might also be forbidden from traveling outside of a certain area, and you may not be able to associate with people who have pending criminal cases or who have been found guilty of felony charges.

When can you exercise your right to remain silent?

Like many of your Derry neighbors, you can probably recite the warning. That is, you have likely heard officers inform suspects of the right to remain silent countless times on television cop shows. If officers ever detain you, exercising your right to remain silent may be the best thing you can do. 

You can exercise your right to remain silent a few ways. You can inform officers that you do not wish to talk to them. You can simply say nothing. Or, you can ask for an attorney. When it comes to asserting your right not to incriminate yourself, though, timing matters. When can you exercise your right to remain silent? 

Officers sometimes use reasonable suspicion to initiate a stop

Now that the warmer months are here, people are going to be out enjoying bonfires and outdoor activities with friends. There are many things that go on at these events. One of them is that alcoholic beverages might be present. If this is the case, anyone who is driving must ensure that they avoid the drinks or they might run the risk of facing a drunk driving charge.

Even though you might think you are fine to drive, your body and mind might have subtle changes that make it impossible for you to remain safe on the road. Oftentimes, others will notice your impairment before you do. Police officers, for example, will look for specific signs of impairment as they watch drivers.

Your drug defense must be based on facts

A drug crime defense, like all defenses, must be based on facts. How you present those might be the key to your defense. When you have this type of charge, you have to look at what you might be able to do for the defense because your options will depend largely on the circumstances of the case.

One of the first things you will have to decide is how you are going to plead to the charges. You have three options. The first is not guilty, which means you deny that you committed the crime. The second is guilty, which means you fully admit that you did what you've been accused of. The third is no contest, which means that you don't admit that you did the crime, but you do admit that the evidence in the case could lead to a conviction.

Could your divorce lead to domestic violence charges?

Family law and criminal law sometimes intersect, and it frequently occurs during a divorce when one spouse accuses the other of domestic violence. That definitely escalates the situation between the parties and makes civil resolution far more difficult.

Without negating the very real horrors domestic violence can inflict upon the victims, there are cases when the accuser makes such allegations in order to get the upper hand in the divorce proceedings.

Annulments for criminal records have specific requirements

In New Hampshire, criminal record expungements are known as annulments. There are very strict requirements for records to be annulled. Understanding some of the requirements might help you determine whether your case may qualify or not. It is important to remember that the court has great discretion about whether to grant the petition or not.

One of the most important things to remember in these cases is that you can't even begin the waiting period for the annulment until you have completed all the sentencing requirements for your conviction. If you weren't convicted, you can petition the court right away once the case is finished through a dismissal, nolle prossed or not guilty finding.

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