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Faqs: Criminal Defense

  • Does hiring an attorney make me look guilty?
    Any interaction with the police can be scary, especially if you are being questioned or interrogated in relation to a crime. Unfortunately, many people don’t contact an attorney first thing—usually because they do not want to appear guilty to law enforcement or a judge. While it’s perfectly normal to be concerned about this perception, it is important to obtain legal representation to protect yourself. If you’ve been contacted by the police, the chances are high...
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  • Are the police allowed to lie in order to get a statement or confession?
    Many of us are raised to believe we can trust the police to protect us. While this is usually true, police officers can and will use questionable tactics to elicit a confession or statement out of someone they suspect of a crime. These techniques sometimes involve lying. Law enforcement officers can legally lie to you in order to gain the truth they are seeking if they suspect you of a crime. Why Police Offers Are...
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  • I was acquitted of a crime In Virginia. Can I get my police record expunged?
    Virginia upholds a criminal code that can come with severe repercussions, including hefty fines and jail time, depending upon the law that was broken. Having a criminal record can negatively impact a person’s future, from job opportunities to housing options. While an individual can’t ask the court to remove all mention of a criminal conviction, they can ask them to wipe the record clean if they have been acquitted or the charges have been dismissed...
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  • What are felony charges?
    Because felony criminal charges are some of the most serious criminal charges accused individuals can face, it is important to be familiar with what they are. In short, it is best to think of felony charges as the most serious types of criminal charges in the criminal justice system. As a result, they require a strong criminal defense. Felony charges can be distinguished from misdemeanor charges that, while serious, are considered less serious than felony...
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  • What is petit larceny?
    A common charge to face here in Virginia after being accused of stealing is petit larceny. Petit larceny is one of the two main offenses that cover theft in state law. The other is grand larceny, which is the more severe of the two. Whether a given theft would be petit or grand larceny depends on what was stolen. Generally, under state law, theft of less than $500 of property is petit larceny. There are...
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  • What are field sobriety tests?
    A field sobriety test is a set of assessments that law enforcement officials use to determine if individuals are intoxicated. They are often used when police officers stop vehicles and need to determine if drivers are under the influence of alcohol. There are three general assessments that drivers may be subjected to if they are stopped in Virginia. One of those assessments is the walk and turn test. During this test, a person must walk...
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  • When can the police legally search my car?
    You were pulled over for a traffic offense, but the police searched your car and found something incriminating—maybe there were drugs or an illegal weapon. Now you are facing something much more serious than a speeding ticket. But you are wondering—was the search even legal? What gave the police the right to go through your trunk, glove compartment, and back seat? Unreasonable searches of your vehicle following a traffic stop are illegal under the Fourth...
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  • How do I challenge a breathalyzer test when needed?
    Breathalyzers tests are a piece of evidence that accused drivers can challenge in a variety of different ways. A breathalyzer test may be used as a key piece of evidence against the accused driver which is why it is essential for accused drivers to be familiar with how to challenge a breathalyzer test. To begin with, it may be possible to challenge the Breathalyzer test on the basis that it is unreliable. Breathalyzer tests must...
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