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St. Louis Criminal Defense Law Blog

Know where you can legally carry your gun to avoid charges

Some people tend to think that they should be able to bring firearms and weapons wherever they want without having to face consequences. They often cite the Second Amendment to back up this desire. Unfortunately, this isn't how it works in reality. There are limitations on the places where you can have weapons.

The Gun Free School Zones Act of 1995 limits where you can carry firearms. This law clearly prohibits any firearm from being carried within 1,000 feet of a school. While this might seem incredibly restrictive, it is meant to help protect children.

What to do if the police want to talk

When you face accusations of or an arrest for a crime, it is paramount that you understand the law. For example, the state of Missouri has three different types of assault charges, including first degree, second degree and third degree. You want to understand each type if the police arrest you on assault charges.

It is also important for you to understand your rights. Whether the criminal accusations or charges are for kidnapping, assault or murder, you are guaranteed certain rights, and an arrest may not happen automatically. Police may wait until they can gather more evidence. During that time, they may ask you to come in for an interview. You should understand what options are available to you.

Think about how you will answer to white collar crime charges

White collar crimes are some that many people tend to overlook. They might think that they won't be caught. In some cases, the people who are doing wrong don't even realize that they are doing things that are illegal.

One thing is true in all white collar crime cases. This is that there is usually considerable evidence about the case. This means that you might be facing a difficult situation. We choose to look at the mound of evidence as opportunities to try to find things that we can call into question as part of your defense.

Identity theft and fraud can lead to prison terms

You have to be careful with what you do to make money. While many people turn to regular jobs, other people try to use creative ways to make money. Two people in Missouri recently discovered that there are legal limits when it has to do with creative ways to get paid.

These two individuals were recently sentenced in connection with a scheme that involved cashing checks that weren't theirs to cash. The 26-year-old male and 22-year-old female took checks out of other people's mailboxes and cashed them as their own.

Voluntary manslaughter means you are facing imprisonment

Any criminal charge related to a homicide is difficult to deal with, but you shouldn't try to just ignore the charges. Trying to ignore them means that you will have to rush and throw together a defense at the last minute. This could mean that you miss critical points that could help your case.

When you are facing voluntary manslaughter charges, you might be relieved that you aren't facing murder charges. Please remember that voluntary manslaughter charges are still very serious matters and can lead to some life-long penalties. This is because it is a violent felony charge, which means that you will be branded as a felon for the rest of your life.

Sex offenders can't face blanket ban from social media websites

Sex offenders, especially those who have to register on the sex offender registry, face a laundry list of requirements and prohibitions. Recently, the United States Supreme Court shot down one prohibition that is associated with these cases.

The Supreme Court ruled that sex offenders can't be banned from using social media. The ruling comes in response to a case that began before social media existed. The sex offender was convicted of charges related to a child. The state's court issued a blanket ban on sex offenders using social media.

Criminal appeals involve a lot of written documentation

Appealing a criminal conviction is something that many people convicted of crimes consider doing. For the men and women who feel this need, determining if their case meets the legal requirements for an appeal can be challenging. We are here to help you determine how you might proceed with your case.

One thing that you have to realize is that your appeal will have to be based on the prior criminal case. This means that the trial is going to be at the center of the appeal. Some defense attorneys work criminal trials with an appeal in mind; however, this isn't always the case.

What type of criminal charge carries the most stigma?

Murder, kidnapping and even DUI can be serious crimes to be charged with. However, it is sex-related crimes that tend to carry the most stigma. Even if someone is not guilty or otherwise cleared of the charges, the stigma remains.

One reason for this could be the fact that society in general sees people convicted of, say, murder, kidnapping or DUI as capable of rehabilitation. Not really so for sexual offenders. Anyone who has to register as a sex offender may be branded as a dangerous person, with little thought paid to the exact circumstances of the alleged crime. For example, a 19-year-old boyfriend could be found guilty of statutory rape of his nearly 17-year-old girlfriend and made to register as a sex offender for years and years.

Determine if your conviction meets the requirements for an appeal

When you are convicted of a criminal charge, there is a chance that you might decide to appeal the conviction. While this isn't very common since very specific requirements exist for these cases, it is something that should be in your mind as you work on your defense.

One thing that you need to remember about criminal appeals is that you can't present new evidence in the appeal. This means that you need to make the defense that you can during the trial. This could be the key to finding a successful grounds for appeal.

Violent crimes are harshly prosecuted; Think about your defense

Violent crimes are often handled very harshly in the criminal justice system. The nature of these crimes often makes the prosecution want to set an example with the case. This places defendants in these cases in a precarious position. We know that you might have some concerns about the direction of your defense. We don't have any promises that we can make; however, we can let you know what choices you have.

There are several different things that separate violent crimes from other crimes. One of these is that the victim might still be alive and able to testify to what happened and how it impacted their life. This can have a big effect on the case.

    • Richard H.Sindel | Best Lawyers In America | Best Lawyers - 2016
    • Richard H. Sindel | America's Most Honored Professionals | 2015
    • Top Attorneys in Missouri & Kansas | 2014 | Richard H. Sindel
    • Top Attorneys in Missouri & Kansas | 2013 | Richard H. Sindel
    • Super Lawyers
    • Richard H. Sindel | Best Lawyers | Lawyer of the year | 2011 | Criminal Defense: Non-White-Collar St.Louis
    • AV Peer Review Rated. Highest Rating For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability
    • MATA - Helping To Balance The Scales Of Justice
    • Member of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    • Member of the National Association of Criminal Defence Lawyers
    • The Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
    • U.S.News| Best Lawyers | Best Law Firms | 2010
    • Charles M. Shaw Award
    • Bar Register Preeminent Lawyers
    • The Missouri Bar
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