Blog

Se Habla Español

Call Today for a Free Consultation

203-348-5846

24 Hoyt Street, Stamford, CT 06905

Recent blog posts

Connecticut defense attorney, Stamford defense lawyerOne of the obstacles those with a criminal record face is finding an employer who will hire them despite that record. A newly-enacted law will now keep Connecticut employers from asking job applicants about their criminal records on employment applications. The law went into effect January 1, 2017.

Specifics of the Law

The law only covers the questions asked on a job application. In an interview, an employer could ask about a criminal record. Also, the law does not apply to jobs where background checks are legally mandatory, such a jobs in schools. The law prohibits any questions about arrests, criminal charges, or criminal convictions.

...

Connecticut defense attorney, Connecticut criminal lawyerWhen someone makes violent crime accusations, they are effectively jeopardizing the future of the accused individual. An allegation on its own can wreak havoc on a once-clean reputation. With enough notoriety, the accused can lose family, jobs, and more. Intelligent and efficient representation early on can help to mitigate any lasting effects of any false claims. Additionally, it is beneficial to understand what the terminology means in a legal realm. In daily conversation murder and homicide are interchangeably used, but each has unique meaning when used in a court-of-law.

Murder: Capital, Felony, and Arson

Murder is the intentional killing of another individual, including forced suicide with duress or deception. Connecticut’s unique legal structure breaks the charge down further into capital, felony, or arson murder rather than first, second and third degree. The differences are as follows:

...

Posted on in Criminal Defense

Connecticut defense lawyer, Connecticut criminal attorneyBeing pulled over by a police officer is a nerve-wracking experience. Because of this, many people make the mistake of consenting to a police search of their car. Criminal defense attorneys routinely advise clients that they should never allow an officer to search their car.

Reasons Why People Consent to Officer Searches of Cars

People have many misconceptions about what the consequences of a car search entail. They may think one or more of the following:

...

Connecticut drug charges, Connecticut defense attorneyFor years police have use trained dogs to help them discover drugs and drug paraphernalia on citizen’s bodies, in bags, and in cars, which will lead to criminal charges. It comes as a surprise then studies show that police K-9s have high error rates.  One study reviewed Chicago police records over three years and determined that police found drugs or paraphernalia 44 percent of the time that a dog alerted an officer it smelled drugs. According to the study, the success rate fell to 22 percent when the person searched was Hispanic. 

How Drug Dogs Are Supposed to Be Used

Drug dogs are supposed to be a way for police to find drugs without infringing on the public’s constitutional rights. For example, if police pull you over for a traffic stop, officers do not have the right to search your car. 

...

Connecticut defense attorney, Connecticut juvenile crimes lawyerWhile watching any teen movies these days, it seems that all our children want to do is drink alcohol and break rules. As the story progresses, a parent is nearly always out of town, and their child invites the entire school over for a night of unsupervised events. Luckily for these cinematic plots, there almost always seems to be a hero who opposes underage drinking and good choices triumph. Perhaps these scenarios serve as a cautionary tale for us as parents to never leave our children alone. However, on the other end, you also do not necessarily want them to go off to college without ever being trusted while you and your spouse run to the grocery store. What our juvenile children do while we are away can have us met with handcuffs and parental liability when we return.

Underage Drinking

If your child sneaks into the liquor cabinet while you are gone, it is not likely that the police will immediately come knocking on the door. However, once neighbors begin to notice droves of children flocking into your home while your car is absent, someone may be inclined to involve the police. Officers jump on the opportunity to make a public example of the teen in question. The problem with making a display is it supersedes the right to a fair court hearing. In too many cases, these juveniles invited over just a couple close friends and those friends are the people who called the school, unbeknownst to you or your child. In similar scenarios, leaving your adolescent alone with an open supply of liquor can result in a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of $2,000.00. Your child can also face charges, resulting in:

...

Connecticut defense attorney, Connecticut criminal attorneyConnecticut laws have seen a shift in the severity in which crimes are punished. While certain drug crimes recently became less troublesome other issues are being treated more harshly, including several traffic laws. One regulation experiencing a severity elevation is evading responsibility, also known as hit and run. Drivers mistakenly choose to leave the scene of an accident hoping to avoid the repercussions. More legal trouble awaits a driver opting to flee without leaving contact information.

How Did They Find Me?

An evading responsibility charge often begins with an emergency 9-1-1 phone call made by the victim or a witness of the accident. Once police arrive at the scene they begin gathering all information available. Cops ask all passengers of the remaining car as well as any witnesses for descriptions of the driver, car, or license plate. From there they utilize all avenues available, including:

...

Connecticut defense lawyer, CT drug lawyerLaws surrounding various recreational drugs, such as marijuana, are in a fluid state of change. Changes occur so frequently that even those paying the closest attention may miss a minor alteration. Frequent modifications cause uncertainty among the general populous as to what the current regulations entail. Officers depend on this ambivalence while doing their searches, hoping the unsuspecting individual will offer further information to incriminate themselves of a drug crime. However, officers are also aware that improper protocol opens themselves up for failure in court.

The Fourth Amendment

The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution is enacted most frequently during questions over proper police procedure. In short, its creation protected the people against British King George’s overbearing and excessive invasion into their privacy and furthermore it protects the rights of citizens against unwarranted search, seizure, and even detainment. It helps to understand what the amendment says, which is:

...

Connecticut stalking laws, Connecticut defense attorneyWhen a relationship ends unexpectedly, it is natural to want to find closure. The closure may come from a variety of sources such as a long conversation about what went wrong or seeing your ex with someone else. When you fail to receive the closure necessary to move on, life often becomes full of turmoil and answerless questions. Many pursue communication long beyond what is acceptable by the opposing party in search of relief, leading to stalking and harassment charges if left unchecked.

Explanation of Charges

Although a phone call is permissible and perhaps a visit under the right circumstances, if someone asks you to cease your behavior, it is important to respect their requests. Over time, the object of your affection may be willing to discuss in detail what went wrong. Failing to give them the time, distance, and respect they need can cause fear for their safety and that of their children. Depending on the circumstances, stalking or harassment charges may ensue. The differences between the two charges are:

...

Connecticut DUI lawyer, Conncecticut drunk driving attorneyConnecticut is notorious for being one of the harshest states with their punishments of DUI. On holidays, the police do not take a break and lend a blind eye to questionable behavior. In many cases, it seems like circumstances point to the contrary. If they are in a bad mood for having to work while you are celebrating, there is an increased likelihood that they will spot potential driving errors. This year proved exceptionally difficult, leaving many excitedly anticipating a new start and a chance for a better year. If you are part of the population going out for New Year’s celebrations, take precautions to ensure you make it home safely instead of sitting behind bars.

Statistics

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, adults drive intoxicated an average of 80 times before their first DUI arrest. Additionally, the likelihood of being involved in a drunk driving accident increases on weekends after dark. During particular occasions throughout the year, such as holidays and summer, arrests skyrocket. In Connecticut, DUI is among one of the most common arrests made. Other statistics include:

...

Connecticut defense lawyer, Connecticut domestic violence attorneyBoth gun ownership and domestic violence are taboo subjects. The treatment of women and the Second Amendment are both at the forefront of debate, especially in election years. Even though we will have a new president and there will likely be plenty of legislative changes, one significant change has already taken place before the early election process began. On October 1, 2016, a law regarding domestic violence and gun ownership altered the previous status quo.

Prohibitions for Convicted Abusers

The previous restrictions are still intact in regards to gun control and those with severe or violent crimes. The prohibitions pertain to both possession and purchase of weapons by those who have been convicted of a violent misdemeanor, regardless of the relationship between the accused and the victim. Crimes that would preclude anyone not being eligible for gun ownership include:

...

Connecticut defense lawyer, Connecticut traffic violation attorneyNo matter how minor a traffic violation may be, repercussions will follow upon determination of a guilty verdict. In addition to surcharges assessed through a fine or penalty, points are added to your driving record. These points not only will likely increase your auto insurance rates, but may have an adverse impact on future legal issues as well as prevent employment opportunities. If you handle the situation appropriately, it is possible to prevent a long-lasting impact due to a minor traffic violation.

Infraction vs. Violation

A traffic incident receives a classification of either infraction or violation. To adequately defend yourself, you must understand to what the terms refer. The difference is:

...

Illinois defense attorney, Illinois sex crimes lawyerWhen an individual finds themselves convicted of a serious crime, they rightfully expect that their future will change. However, upon conviction of a sexual crime, the difficulty of the uncertainty of their future and any behavior expectations may become overwhelming. One dilemma revolves around sex offender registration. What does this mean for everyday life and how will it impact the future? Sex offender registrants must meet certain requirements to abide by Connecticut laws.

Types of Sex Crimes

Nearly every conviction for any sex crime in Connecticut requires that the offender register on the National Sex Offender Registry. A few of the crimes that are under these regulations are:

...

b2ap3_thumbnail_Refusing-a-Breathalyzer.jpgA social drink with friends or family can become a legal headache when the police are involved. Once the lights start flashing in your rearview mirror, that buzz may dissipate, but the alcohol remains in the system. Throughout the United States, you are innocent until proven guilty. Therefore, no matter how erratic you were driving, as the officer approaches the vehicle, substantial evidence of DUI is unavailable. However, if there is reasonable belief of driving while intoxicated, a breathalyzer is requested. You do have the right to refuse. However, refusal does come at a price.

Implied Consent Law

It is true that you are innocent until proven guilty of any crime, yet you must also watch out that you are not breaking a different law in the process of maintaining your innocence. While refusal of a breathalyzer or other chemical test may prevent the procurement of quantifiable evidence, the refusal may be construed as proof of knowledge of breaking the law. In the state of Connecticut, as well as many other states, drivers accept their driving privileges with the understanding of implied consent. The implied consent law says that after an arrest under probable cause of DUI, as a part of your driving privileges, you agree to blood, breath, or urine testing.

...

Connecticut juvenile lawyer, Connecticut defense attorneyWith an increasing amount of pressure on our teens, we see a rise in unusual behavior. Our children face uncertainty upon leaving high school, partly due to fluctuation in job markets as well as climbing education costs. The need for perfection in school and extracurriculars is high to obtain scholarships to pay for education. Not to mention the additional stress for social status and every mistake spread wildly across social media outlets. Many of these stressors may lead to a cry for help or an error to fit in, potentially resulting in criminal accusations, such as theft or other property crimes.

A Learning Curve

A juvenile is an individual under the legal adult age of 18. In Connecticut, anyone under the age of 18 has a proclivity to make mistakes, and many deserve punishment, although not as severe as the adult counterpart. Many consequences for those in this age bracket are designed to teach a lesson rather than remove rights. This theory applies to a certain extent encompassing mostly theft related crimes because in many other situations adult punishments are the only option.

...

Connecticut defense lawyer, Connecticut DUI attorneyBeing convicted of driving while under the influence of alcohol is life-altering under any circumstances. The offense can have a substantial impact on your driving privileges and can also negatively affect sentencing for future non-related crimes. As if these penalties were not prerogative enough to dispute any allegation of DUI, if you are a CDL license holder, your career may be put jeopardy.

Different Laws to Follow

The career of a commercial driver license (CDL) holder revolves around the ability to safely operate a vehicle. In most situations, the trucks they are responsible for maneuvering are many times larger than the average car on the road. If they were to collide, significant, potentially catastrophic injuries and even death are possible. For these reasons, the standards set for CDL drivers to uphold are higher. Regulations pertaining to operating a commercial vehicle are as follows:

...

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.

...

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.

...

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:

...

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:

...

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:

...