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Lakewood Criminal Defense Law Blog

Forensic changes are changing the way police hunt suspects

Over a year ago, authorities in California finally tracked down an infamous rapist and murderer known as "the Golden State Killer." The suspect was now in his 70s and the crimes had been committed in the mid-1970s and mid-1980s -- but he had been identified through a combination of DNA and detective work.

Where did the DNA come from? Some of it came from his victims -- but the DNA that allowed police to track him down came from his relatives. Those relatives had used for-profit genetic testing sites and public databases like 23andMe and Ancestry. Their genetic information allowed police to narrow down a list of suspects and zero in on one of their most-wanted criminals -- long after he probably expected to get away with his crimes for good.

Understanding your rights: What is entrapment?

If you get arrested for a crime, it's important to fully understand your rights. In some cases, the authorities may have violated those rights during the arrest or the very commission of the crime itself. That's what happens in entrapment cases.

Essentially, entrapment means that the authorities enticed you to commit a crime just so that they could arrest you. This violates a legal theory stating that "[g]overnment agents may not originate a criminal design, implant in an innocent person's mind the disposition to commit a criminal act, and then induce commission of the crime so that the Government may prosecute."

How to find a job with a criminal record

Getting back into the working world following a criminal conviction can be very difficult and stressful. You need to work, you want to work, and you likely know in the back of your head that it will be challenging to do so. It might even feel impossible to secure employment. Here are some tips for finding a job with a criminal record in Florida.

First and foremost, it's important for you to be open and honest during every job interview. Don't try to hide the fact that you have a criminal record. The employer will conduct a background check and investigation, which means they will wind up finding your record one way or another.

Do you know what it means to face felony charges?

If you are facing any type of criminal charge, you probably feel overwhelmed and confused. What did you do to find yourself in this situation? What should you do next? Is it possible to fight these charges? These are just a few questions you may have after an arrest in Florida and the filing of formal charges.

One of the most important steps in fighting back against any type of criminal charge is figuring out exactly what you're up against. Understanding the charges against you is the first step in developing the right type of defense strategy for your unique situation. You will need to know if you are facing a felony or misdemeanor charge. This is an important distinction in the nature of your case and the severity of the penalties you could face.

Domestic violence allegations are sometimes a tactical move

There's no question that domestic violence is a real problem, with real victims. Those victims deserve a great deal of empathy and assistance.

Unfortunately, false domestic violence allegations also happen. While not the norm, false allegations are sometimes a cynical and calculated move on the part of one spouse against the other during a divorce.

Convicted of DUI? An ignition interlock device could await you

In Florida, if you are convicted of driving under the influence, you could be required to have an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle. It's just another one of the inconveniences and costs you could be forced to endure with a DUI conviction.

With an ignition interlock device, a car won't start if the driver doesn't blow a suitable breath sample of less than .025 percent blood alcohol concentration (BAC), if the conviction occurred after July 1, 2013. For those convicted before then, the threshold is .05 percent blood alcohol level.

Man arrested in ongoing human trafficking and prostitution sting

Palm Beach Gardens, an ordinarily idyllic region, has received much notoriety in recent weeks regarding an ongoing investigation centered on prostitution and human trafficking in area day spas. Several days ago, this investigation resulted in the arrest of the then-president of Kolter Homes, a respected community development company.

According to media outlets, the charges against the defendant include soliciting prostitution and using a structure for the purpose of prostitution. The defendant has been speaking to the press but has not revealed much about his case. What he did reveal was his immediate resignation as president of Kolter Homes.

Could you be accused of domestic abuse for handling the money?

When you hear the words "domestic abuse," you probably envision someone physically, verbally or sexually assaulting someone he or she is supposed to care for and love. You are right in thinking that those are forms of domestic abuse, but other behaviors could fall under that definition as well.

Did you know that you could face false accusations of domestic abuse because you handle the family finances? What may have worked for you as a couple during your marriage could now end up used against you in a divorce.

Consult an attorney immediately if accused of domestic violence

Domestic violence is a serious crime, and no one deserves to be a victim.

However, sometimes, people can find themselves accused of domestic violence – perhaps by an angry former partner who wants revenge for a breakup, for example – but those allegations can have a lasting impact.

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