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Connecticut defense lawyer, Connecticut juvenile crimes attorneyAs parents, we go out of our way to protect our children. If someone bullies them, we do what we can to help them heal, learn to defend themselves, and punish those at fault. When our child is the one who misbehaved, protection takes a different form. They need punishments for learning experiences, as long as they are within reason. However, when the other parent comes knocking at your door, be careful what you say. Words you say to defend your child may be used against you in a parental liability suit.

Parental Liability

You are likely aware that being a parent comes with a significant amount of responsibility. Not only does your child need to be fed and sheltered, but also needs to obtain an education, maintain health, and attend regular dental visits. What you may not be immediately aware of is that your child also cannot become a disruptive member of society. Anything that your child does can have a direct impact on you and you may be held responsible. Children are not accountable for the same standards that adults are. However, they do have a level of behavior to which they still must adhere. If they are under 16 years of age, an unwritten standard of conduct exists for the rational behavior of those of similar age, experience, and intelligence. This reasonable expectation is how their behavior is judged.

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Connecticut defense lawyer, Connecticut criminal attorneyAccidents do not always have to involve other vehicles. An accident can happen with an entirely stationary object, such as a street sign, mailbox or even a tree. Property damage happens for a variety of reasons. Most of the time, the property needs to be replaced or repaired by the person at fault, and any additional consequences are minimal. However, if the incident happened because the driver of the vehicle was driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the repercussions are more severe.

When Cause Matters

DUI consequences are harsh, carrying a life-long impact. However, with the inclusion of property damages or personal injuries the penalties can double in severity. Additionally, the cause of the property damage carries variable outcomes. If the incident was avoidable if behavior had been different, the penalty is higher. Let us explore the variances of property damage.

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Posted on in Violent Crimes

Connecticut criminal statutes, Connecticut defense lawyerThe term “hate crime” seems to be rearing itself more often in news stories today. From social media to mainstream television stories, this term is being thrown about, often with disregard to the full legal definition. Although there are individuals who appear to reject the idea, the United States as a whole is embracing the idea of diversity. After all, the country is a “melting pot” of the world, where people from all walks of life are invited to join our great nation. However, with such a wide variation, it is becoming increasingly difficult to determine whether a crime is a crime of convenience or a hate crime.

Constitution of a Hate Crime

If proof beyond a reasonable doubt exists that a violent act or other criminal activity occurred due to the violence or bigotry of an individual, a lesser crime may escalate to a higher charge. Stronger punishments await those charged for violent discrimination against any person for any protected characteristics, including:

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Posted on in Juvenile Crimes

Stamford juvenile defense attorney“They were mean to me!” Most parents have heard this or a similar complaint from their child. In previous generations, children were often left to learn from the experience by handling it themselves. If the methodology chosen was incorrect, our parents were sure to let us know about it as soon as we got home. In the present day, there is a national outcry for the school system to step in and protect children. Although school should have some responsibility to ensure the safety of the child, there is a point where the bully becomes a victim.

What Constitutes Bullying?

Stereotypically, the bully is the child that dominates their classmates, taking their lunch money and locking them in lockers. Bullying comes in all forms, including verbal, emotional and physical. The term has expanded to encompass a broad range of behaviors, which, by law, each school district is to define independently. However, legislation exists at the state and federal level to combat violence and harassment in the education system. The law dictates that bullying is:

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Posted on in Driving Under the Influence

Fairfield County criminal defense attorneyMany children are similar to sponges in that they absorb everything around them. Have you noticed that your child repeats your language or behavior? This repetition is thought to be practicing behavior for children. They practice forming sentences or saying new words by verbally repeating your words. In the same way, they repeat behavior they see, such as exercising or spending time on electronics. Due to this and because children do not have a significant amount of leverage with the behavior of their parents, crimes such as DUI/OUI when children are present are punished more severely.

Risk of Injuries

When a child is under the age of 18, they are in the direct care of a parent or other guardian. It is the responsibility of that adult to ensure the safety of the child in question. The law specifically requires children under the age of 16 to be guarded safely, and anyone who violates this statute is subject to legal repercussions. Among other situations, the law explicitly states that it is illegal to:

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Posted on in Violent Crimes

Fairfield County criminal defense attorneyAs children, many of us were taught not to hit others, but if they hit us first, it was okay to defend yourself. Although that method works for small children, once they reach the pre-teen years, perhaps we should be a bit more elaborate. After all, the law states that only under certain, pre-defined circumstances is it okay for you to use violence as a form of defense. In many violent crime situations, it is entirely possible that the scenario can reverse in court, and the victim can quickly become the aggressor.  

The Scenario

Although the potential to be criminalized for defensive action can occur with almost any circumstance, for the brevity of this post, only one situation will be discussed. What if someone is breaking into your home through the window to your child’s room and protecting your kids asleep in bed, you shoot the intruder as they are crossing the threshold of the windowsill? What if the criminal dies as a direct consequence of their injuries sustained? If their family is distraught over their lost family member, they may obtain legal counsel and bring forth charges against you as the homeowner for murdering this person. You did not seek out to break any laws; you just were defending your family.

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"StamfordBeing accused of any crime is a sobering experience. Whether you are innocent, were in the company of an offender at the time they committed a crime, or made a poor choice that led you to an arrest, being faced with criminal charges of any kind is an unnerving, stressful experience. Along with imprisonment, some criminal charges can affect your most basic rights. Felony charges, in particular, can have a significant impact on your rights as a citizen.

What Crimes Are Considered Felonies?

Connecticut law defines a felony as an offense for which a person can be sentenced to a term of imprisonment in excess for one year. Felonies are broken down into classifications, ranging from Class A to D, unclassified, and capital. Aggravated assault, battery, robbery, theft, vandalism, and driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs are all deemed felonies. These types of crimes typically involve some kind of serious physical threat or harm to a victim, and are considered one of the most serious criminal charges.

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Fairfield County juvenile defense attorneyHearing that your teen is involved in any bullying incident is alarming enough; no parent wants to see one of their biggest fears come to fruition. What about when your teen is not on the receiving end of the incident, though? What happens when the young person in your life is the one being accused of the bullying behavior? Where can you turn, what can you do, and how can you prevent the incident from happening again?

Stay Alert to the Warning Signs

Many parents feel helpless when their child is accused of bullying, but the truth is parents do have some power when it comes to prevention and damage control. While you cannot prevent all poor choices your teen may decide to make, you can help prevent some of them by watching for signs that they might be partaking in harmful bullying activities.

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Stamford Criminal Defense AttorneyBeing accused of any crime is an unnerving experience; criminal charges have the power to severely alter your present circumstances and your entire future, potentially affecting everything from your employment options to your educational choices. Assault charges in particular are especially damaging, as they are often the most serious and carry with them the most devastating consequences. There are some important things to consider when discussing the crime of assault.

“Assault” is a Broad Term

Assault crimes and charges can vary greatly. The law uses the term “assault” to refer to the carrying out of physical, bodily harm on someone else, or a presented threat to carry out such harm. Threats to hurt someone, being involved in a public disturbance, domestic violence, a breach of peace, and other types of disorderly conduct that involve the harm of another human being are all considered forms of assault. In general, less serious assault charges are categorized as third-degree. They are typically the lowest level of assault charges, while first-degree charges are the most serious. The severity of the injury and whether or not a weapon was used are just a few factors that determine the level of assault charge.

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Stamford juvenile criminal defense attorneyFor a variety of reasons, young people are, sadly, the culprits of countless crimes—theft and property crimes, in particular. Such behavior is typically indicative of a much larger problem. Youths who commit crimes are often emotionally and mentally troubled, or they have simply surrounded themselves with negative influences who have paved the way for their poor choices. Most youth-driven crimes are usually minor, but what may be considered a small theft or abuse of property can be the beginning of a pattern early on that later becomes a much more serious problem.

Delinquent Acts Versus Adult Crimes

Juvenile crimes are like any other crimes; they include everything from burglary, larceny, and motor vehicle theft to shoplifting and assault. One of the distinctions is that when a juvenile commits an offense that is considered by law to be an “adult” crime, the juvenile is deemed a delinquent--essentially a young criminal. This means they are prosecuted for delinquent acts, not crimes, with the exception of serious delinquent acts, which can, depending on the circumstances, be tried in court as adult crimes.

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Stamford DUI defense attorneyOne of the most prevalent questions drivers arrested for the suspicion of operating under the influence tend to have is whether or not they are permitted to refuse the breathalyzer test upon arrest. The answer to this question is generally straightforward. According to the law in the state of Connecticut, you are within your rights to refuse to submit to a breathalyzer test if you are pulled over for the suspicion of drinking and driving. However, there are consequences you need to be aware of should you decide to refuse the test.

1. Your Driver’s License Is Automatically Suspended

One of the first consequences you will face when you are found to be operating under the influence is the suspension of your license. The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has the authority to suspend your driving privileges if you fail or refuse a breathalyzer test or other form of chemical testing. As a first time offender, you will lose your license for six months for failing a test if you are over the age of 21, or for 12 months if you are between the ages of 18 and 20. Younger first time offenders who are 16 or 17 years of age will lose their license for 18 months.

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Stamford juvenile crime defense attorneyJuvenile crimes are among some of the most heartbreaking, especially where parents and loved ones are concerned. Everything from bullying, campus crimes, sex offenses, and drug allegations continue to impact not only the juveniles found guilty of such crimes, but families, friends, and, of course, victims, as well. Anyone involved in these juvenile offenses can testify to the life-altering effects brought on by such tragic behavior.

Recent Developments in Juvenile Crime Rates

As of January 2016, Connecticut has seen a 54 percent decrease in annual juvenile arrests and incarcerations since 2009.  During that same period, there has been a 75 percent decrease in inmates under the age of 18. These statistics are encouraging, driven by the “Raise the Age” state initiative that went into effect back in 2012, which raised the age of juvenile jurisdiction to age 18. Additionally, the percentage of young offender cohort arrests declined, and arrest rates for juveniles aged 16 to 21 on an annual basis have been consistently dropping.

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Fairfield County drug crimes attorneyWhen you are found to be in possession of marijuana or other drugs, whether you are in a public place or in the company of friends, you may face serious criminal charges from a number of different angles. The consequences can be even more grave when those charges involve distributing, selling to, or employing minors to sell such drugs.

Penalties for Possession

According to Connecticut law, marijuana charges (and other certain controlled substances) are penalized in the following ways:

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Fairfield County criminal defense lawyerWhen it comes to your driving record, your wallet, and your safety, certain traffic violations can either mean minor inconveniences or major consequences for you as a driver. By avoiding the following driving behaviors, you can help keep the roads safer, keep your driving record clear, and hang on to that extra cash in your pocket.

Driving With a Suspended License or No License at All

If you are 18 years old or older and you receive two or more tickets for driving without a valid driver’s license, the next repercussion you will face is a mandatory driving privilege suspension that lasts for a period of 90 days. You are required to serve the full term of the suspension before you are eligible for license restoration. The same standards apply if you are found to be driving with a suspended license; you are not permitted to drive a motor vehicle until your privileges are restored and any applicable fees have been paid.

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Fairfield County criminal defense attorneyWith or without any direct evidence of a person's BAC (blood alcohol concentration), Connecticut police have the right to prosecute when a driver is found to be impaired by drugs or alcohol while operating a vehicle. The state of Connecticut considers this a criminal offense and takes the prosecution of such offenses very seriously, beginning with the automatic suspension of one’s driver’s license. 

The moment you are arrested for OUI, you are escorted to the police station and your vehicle must be towed at your expense. There are two ways you can lose your license following an OUI arrest in the state of Connecticut: by failing or refusing a chemical alcohol test or through court conviction.

What Happens to My Driving Privileges Under Connecticut Law?

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Stamford criminal defense attorneyReputations can be completely devastated simply by the mere mention of a sexual offense charge. When a child is included, lives and families can be ripped apart just by a simple accusation. When someone is convicted of such a crime, the impact has the potential to wreak so much havoc that the person convicted is unable to recover. It is imperative to find the best possible defense for yourself as doing so can be life altering. What are the potential defenses for a charge of online solicitation of a minor?

What the Charge Entails

It is important to understand that anything involving a crime facilitated by a computer or other device is governed by laws that are ever-changing. The rate at which technology is advancing presents a legal struggle for the law to address this fairly new realm of crime. In Connecticut, solicitation is known as “enticement”. Connecticut General Statutes provide that “a person is guilty of enticing a minor when such person uses an interactive computer service to knowingly persuade, induce, entice or coerce any person under sixteen years of age to engage in prostitution or sexual activity for which the actor may be charged with a criminal offense.”

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Fairfield County juvenile defense attorneyIt is very common for parents of children facing a juvenile offense to feel overwhelmed following the initial accusation. Is your child really guilty? How could they have committed such a crime? Who will be responsible financially, and how long or how severe will the punishment be? Juvenile crime cases can affect a child’s future in countless ways, especially when they occur during or around graduation time, during college, or before a big life transition. Jobs, career paths, and even college plans can all be impacted as a result of a juvenile offense.

Common Juvenile Criminal Offenses

The state of Connecticut sees young offenders get involved with everything from drug, theft, and assault crimes to more serious and dangerous crimes, such as murder and sex crimes. Some common juvenile criminal offenses that require proper legal representation include:

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Fairfield County criminal defense lawyerOften when we think of traffic violations, we think of hefty fines, arrests, and various crash statistics. While it is true that all these things typically accompany traffic violations, another area that is impacted by these incidents is the driver’s record. No matter how minor or major your violation might seem, the repercussions do not always end with a simple ticket and a fine.

Depending on the circumstances that surround your violation, you might face a serious hit to your driving record--consequences that can follow you long-term and affect everything from your car insurance rates to your privileges on the open road.

Point Assessments and Your Driving Record

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Stamford criminal defense attorneyInternet-based business fraud and theft in the state of Connecticut is a multi-faceted crime that has far-reaching consequences for everyone involved. Computer and internet crimes can include everything from identity, credit card, check, and wire fraud to healthcare theft and Medicare scams. Crime rates for these types of offenses continue to grow as our technological abilities continue to advance. Offenders are continually developing new, creative strategies and evolving in their schemes to reflect the current trends and stay one step ahead of authorities.

Types of Internet Fraud

Internet fraud varies and covers a wide range of areas, including but no limited to:

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Stamford traffic violations attorneyNo one wants to get a speeding ticket. The fines, the hassle of often dealing with license points, and the time it takes in the actual moment of incident to deal with law enforcement officials are costly in more ways than one. Driving even five miles over the posted speed limit in any area can result in being pulled over and handed a ticket—but if you are driving far faster than the speed limit, or in a manner that law enforcement determines is dangerous for yourself and other motorists on the road, you may be slapped with a reckless driving charge.

Reckless driving in Connecticut is considered a serious driving offense. Other serious driving offenses include improperly changing lanes, texting while driving, or following too closely. If you receive two serious offenses within three years, your license will be suspended for 60 days. If you receive three serious offenses within the same time period, your license is subject for suspension for 120 days.

Subjective Criteria 

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