“Not Guilty” is Not Enough When it Comes to Your Criminal Record

When someone is arrested and charged with a crime, they go through an extensive booking process. We’re all familiar with the concept of being “booked” by which the arresting authority takes the arrestee’s photograph, fingerprints, and biographical information about the person. But what exactly do they do with it, and how does it affect that person in the future, after the case is closed? All of this information, Read More

Understanding Federal Criminal Forfeiture

Did you know that if you are charged with and convicted of a crime in federal court, you could lose a lot more than your freedom as a penalty? The process is called “Criminal Forfeiture,” and it gives the government sweeping powers to seize certain property and assets both before and following a criminal conviction. The FBI defines the purpose of criminal asset forfeiture as follows: The use of asset forfeiture Read More

Understanding the Dangers of Talking to the Police—Even When You Think You Are Innocent

What would you do at work if your boss called you into his office and said you were going to face disciplinary measures for something you know you didn’t do? Of course, you would detail exactly what happened and why you are not at fault, right? What about if you got home late from running errands and your spouse begins to yell at you because they suspect you of infidelity? Certainly, you would do all you can to Read More

What To Do When the FBI Comes Knocking

So, you are just sitting down to dinner when you hear a knock on your door. You weren’t expecting company, so who could it be? You open the door to see a pair of FBI agents brandishing their badges. They need some information, they say. They just want to talk to you, they say. “Am I in trouble?” you ask. “We just want to ask you some questions,” they respond. What do you do in this situation? They haven’t Read More

A Step-By-Step Guide to the Arrest Process

If the government elects to charge you with a crime, one of the first things that is going to happen is that you will probably be arrested. Most of us know the term “arrested.” We have a general understanding that it means being taken to jail by the police. However, most people really do not know how the process works on a step-by-step basis. In fact, unless you’ve actually been arrested before, you probably only Read More

How to Protect Yourself Against False Domestic Violence Accusations

Domestic violence accusations can ruin your life, whether you are ever convicted of a crime or not. False accusations of abuse are detrimental on numerous levels, causing sometimes irreparable harm to the life and reputation of the falsely accused abuser, and raising doubts and taking focus away from the thousands of real victims of domestic violence. There are numerous reasons someone might falsely accuse another Read More

Key Differences Between Federal and State Court

The United States judicial system can be incredibly complex and sometimes difficult to follow. Many citizens are not aware of the differences between the federal and state courts, or how the criminal justice process will apply to them if they are charged with a crime. One aspect of the US judicial system that can be especially confusing is the fact that there is more than one court system. The US government is Read More

The Difference Between Assault and Battery

If you’ve ever watched a crime show on TV you’ve probably heard the term “assault and battery.” While it is true that these two charges are related and often come together, did you know that they can actually be two separate crimes depending on the jurisdiction in which the case occurs and will be tried? There is a misconception that assault and battery are always the same thing, but there are some key differences Read More

Understanding the Federal Jury Selection Process

In the United States, most people know that, if you have been charged with a crime, you are entitled to a trial before a jury of your peers. But what exactly does a “jury of your peers mean?” And how is that jury selected? If you are a defendant in a criminal case, selecting a jury can be the most important part of your case, because it is those 12 people who will decide if you are not guilty or Read More

Understanding the Difference Between a Trial Jury and a Grand Jury

There is a lot of confusion and misunderstanding out there about the difference between a grand jury and a trial jury, and their roles in a criminal case. It’s important to understand how each one works and how they differ from one another. Let’s examine some of the main differences between a grand jury and a trial jury. Purpose A grand jury is a body of individuals summoned from the community to determine Read More