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Indianapolis Criminal Defense Law Blog

Some possible defenses when accused of sex assault

Being charged with sex assault can be a life-changing setback for any individual as laws in Indiana are harsh when it comes to dealing with people convicted of a sex crime. The situation is worse if the accused is actually innocent and has been framed due to circumstances beyond his or her control. This is often the case when the defendant believes that the sexual acts were performed only after receiving due consent from the person who eventually accused the defendant of sexual assault.

There are, however, some recognized defenses that an accused can use to counter the charges in court. Those include claiming innocence, establishing consent and proving insanity or mental incapacity.

Field sobriety tests a suspected drunk driver has to take

In order to detect whether a person is driving under the influence, the first step that police officers in Indiana and elsewhere usually take is to conduct a set of three standardized field sobriety tests. Although not fully accurate, these tests allow the apprehending officer to assess reasonably whether the driver's intoxication level is within the permissible blood alcohol concentration level of 0.08.

The first of those three standardized field sobriety tests is the "horizontal gaze nystagmus" test in which a DUI suspect is asked to follow the slow horizontal movement of an officer's pen or a flashlight while the officer observes the suspect's eyes for three signs of intoxication. This test is based on the premise that, beyond a BAC of 0.08, a person's eyes may jerk involuntarily even when asked to observe an object at low angles of deviation.

Common white-collar crimes and associated penalties - III

Over the last couple of weeks, the posts on this blog discussed some common white-collar crimes and the penalties associated with those. Those two posts provided an overview of insurance fraud, insider trading, tax evasion and money laundering and the penalties associated with these four white collar crimes.

This third and final blog post in the series on white collar crimes will discuss embezzlement and its associated penalties. According to current laws, individual embezzlement can be divided into four broad categories, depending on the type of money or property that was stolen. As a result, the penalties associated with each type of embezzlement are also different, based on the same set of factors.

3 ways criminal charges can be filed

If you find yourself in trouble with law enforcement, you may immediately think that you will have serious charges brought against you. However, a simple traffic stop or other relatively minor interaction with a police officer may not mean that you will face formal charges as some cases may warrant a warning only. Still, the possibility does exist that criminal charges could come against you in other scenarios.

Even after an officer takes you into custody, you likely have not had formal charges brought against you. When it comes to filing formal charges, a prosecutor could utilize various methods.

Common white collar crimes and associated penalties - II

Last week's blog post discussed the penalties associated with insurance fraud. Insurance fraud is a white collar crime that attracts penalties both at federal and state levels. In addition to insurance fraud, some other common white collar crimes are insider trading, tax evasion, money laundering and embezzlement. This post will discuss the penalties associated with insider trading, tax evasion and money laundering.

Insider trading is a securities fraud in which participants enter an organized scheme centered on the idea of trading confidential business information. Insider trading is considered a federal offense and can attract a prison sentence that can range from 15-21 months and up to 20 years. In addition, the court may slap a fine of up to $5 million for an individual offender and up to $25 million for an organizational offender.

Common white collar crimes and associated penalties - I

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, white collar crime relates to the full range of frauds committed by business and government professionals. Some major characteristics of white collar crime, per the FBI, are deceit, concealment and violation of trust. It does not involve physical force or violence and the motive is related to obtaining money, property, services or personal/professional advantage.

Penalties for committing a white collar crime are based on the gravity of the actual crime. For example, some less-serious white collar crimes attract fines, home detention, community confinement and covering the cost of prosecution, while white collar crimes that are more serious attract penalties such as forfeitures, restitution, supervised release and even imprisonment. However, if a defendant admits to committing the crime and agrees to help the investigators, it is possible to reduce the sentence.

Removal from the Indiana Sex Offender Registry - Part II

Readers who have visited this blog earlier may know that the previous post discussed how a non-incarcerated registrant can protest the inclusion or modification of his or her information in the Indiana Sex Offender Registry. This post will continue the discussion by sharing further details with the reader about what needs to be done in the event that the non-incarcerated registrant's protest is denied.

According to the Registration Appeal Procedure in Indiana for Non-Incarcerated Registrants, Indiana law enforcement agencies are supposed to let a non-incarcerated registrant know, in person or via mail, whether the protest has been granted or denied. If denied, the response states that the non-incarcerated registrant must file an appeal within seven days. The registrant is also made aware that he or she should be aware of all the relevant rules and that failure to follow the rules might result in an unfavorable ruling.

Removal from the Indiana Sex Offender Registry - Part I

Indiana has a comprehensive legal system in place for matters related to sexual offences. In addition to listing the penalties for sexual offences and the provision for including a sexual offender's name in the Indiana Sex Offender Registry, the state's laws has provisions for a non-incarcerated registrant to appeal the inclusion of his or her name in the Registry in order to have it removed from the list.

Since October 2013, law enforcement agencies in Indiana are required to notify an individual before including his or her name in the Sex Offender Registry. Upon receipt of this notification, that individual has the right to appeal the decision, provided certain conditions are met.

Are you looking for information regarding posting bail?

After a police officer placed you under arrest, your main thoughts may have related to getting out of jail as soon as possible. The amount of time this takes -- if it happens at all -- depends greatly on the circumstances of a specific situation. After all, bail differs from case to case.

When it comes to posting bail, you may want to remember that this option does not apply to every person. If a judge believes that you pose a threat to the community or believes that you will attempt to flee if released, it is likely that he or she will not allow bail. Still, other scenarios regarding bail could apply to your case.

State courts and federal courts: What are the differences?

The judiciary in the United States is divided into federal and state courts. Federal courts are under the purview of the Constitution of the United States state courts are under the purview of the state constitution, which means that Indiana state courts are under the purview of the Constitution of Indiana. There are, however, certain differences between state and federal courts, based mainly on the type of cases that are heard in each type of court or, in other words, the jurisdiction of each type of court.

State courts have jurisdiction over various matters. Some examples of a state court's jurisdiction would include family law cases, criminal cases, antitrust cases, bankruptcy-related cases, intellectual property cases and certain types of maritime law cases. Some of these types of cases can also be heard in federal courts, provided that jurisdiction over that particular type of case is listed in the U.S. Constitution.

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