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MURDER

Murder is the intentional unlawful killing of one human being by another. It is distinct from manslaughter, the accidental unlawful killing of one human being from another, and lawful homicides, which are either justifiable or excusable.

Sentences for a conviction on a charge of murder include:

  • Up to life imprisonment with or without parole
  • Death penalty
  • Significant fines
  • Other

Defenses for Murder may potentially include:

  • Defense of self/ home/ family, especially in states with "no duty to retreat" or "make my day" laws
  • Insufficient evidence
  • Provable innocence
  • Insanity
  • Battered woman
  • Other

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RAPE

Rape is defined as an act of sexual intercourse between two or more persons which is against the will of one person, and the act was accomplished by means of force, violence, duress, menace, drugs, or fear of immediate and unlawful injury to the alleged victim.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Rape include:

  • Long prison sentence
  • Sex offender registration for the rest of your life
  • Loss of the right to vote or own a deadly weapon
  • Probation or parole
  • Court ordered AIDS testing
  • Mandatory rehabilitation
  • Significant fines
  • Other

Defenses against a charge of Rape include:

  • Proving consent
  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving mistaken identity
  • Other

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MOLESTATION

Molestation, often termed "sex crimes," is when an adult commits any lewd or lascivious act upon or with the body of a child, with the specific intent of arousing, appealing to, or gratifying the lust or passions or sexual desires of that person and/or the child. The child is never considered a consenting partner.

Consequences for a conviction on a charge of Molestation include:

  • Long-term imprisonment
  • Sex offender registration for the rest of your life, including movement and living restrictions
  • Loss of the right to vote or own a deadly weapon
  • Long-term probation or parole
  • Court-ordered AIDS testing
  • Prohibition from being near minors, even family members
  • Mandatory rehabilitation
  • Significant fines
  • Other

Defenses of Molestation may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving mistaken identity
  • Other

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THEFT/ARMED ROBBERY

Theft is when one person takes personal property of some value belonging to another if the person who took the property had the specific intent to deprive the alleged victim permanently of that property and that person carried the property away by obtaining physical possession and control for some period of time and by some movement of the property. Armed robbery is theft while in possession of a weapon.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Theft include:

  • Long-term imprisonment
  • Probation or parole
  • Loss of the right to be bonded, which has many employment consequences
  • Payment of restitution to the victim
  • Court ordered counseling
  • Significant fines above and beyond restitution
  • Other

Defenses of Theft may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving you are the true owner of property in question
  • Other

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FRAUD

Fraud is when a person makes or causes to be made directly, indirectly, or through agency, a false statement with the specific intent that it be relied upon, while knowing this statement was false, especially when the false statement was made with the specific intent to procure either the delivery of personal property, the payment of cash, the making of a loan, credit, the extension of credit, the execution of a contract of guaranty, the discount of an account receivable, or the making, acceptance, discount, sale or endorsement of a bill of exchange or promissory note before the benefit of either that person or another person.

Consequences for a conviction on a charge of Fraud include:

  • Long-term imprisonment
  • Probation or parole
  • Loss of the right to be bonded, which has many employment consequences
  • Payment of restitution to the victims
  • Mandatory counseling
  • Significant fines above and beyond restitution
  • Other

Defenses of Fraud may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving true owner
  • Proving the statement was
    • Not known to be false
    • Not intended to be relied on
    • Not made with the intent to procure property or money
  • Other

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EMBEZZLEMENT

Embezzlement is when a person abuses a relationship of trust and confidence extant between him and another person for the intent of procuring property or money belonging to the other party.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Embezzlement include:

  • Long-term imprisonment
  • Probation or parole
  • Loss of the right to be bonded, which has consequences for employment
  • Payment of restitution to the victims
  • Mandatory counseling
  • Significant fines above and beyond restitution
  • Other

Defenses of Embezzlement may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving accused is the true owner of property in question
  • Proving no relationship of trust existed
  • Proving the actions were perceived as being consistent with relationship
  • Other

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ILLEGAL POSSESSION OF WEAPONS

A person may be charged with illegal possession of weapons if one has actual or constructive possession of a deadly weapon such as a gun, knife, etc, and the person is either not allowed to possess such a deadly weapon as a condition of a prior conviction or the possession is inconsistent with the laws for registration and possession of deadly weapons.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Illegal Possession of Weapons include:

  • Long or short-term imprisonment
  • Probation or parole
  • Loss of the right to own a deadly weapon
  • Significant fines
  • Other

Defenses of Illegal Possession of Weapons may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Other

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PROBATION VIOLATION

Probation is usually made with very specific conditions relevant to the conviction for which probation was sentenced. A violation of these conditions can lead to revocation of probation and the imposition of a custodial (Jail or Prison) sentence.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Probation Violation include:

  • Probation revoked
  • Jail or imprisonment (depends upon original conviction)
  • Significant fines
  • Probation reinstatement with additional terms including:
    • Jail/Prison
    • Longer term
    • Community service
    • Rehabilitation program
    • Additional fines
    • Other

Defenses for Probation Violation may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving probation terms complied with
  • Other

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VEHICULAR MANSLAUGHTER

Vehicular manslaughter is when a person unintentionally but unlawfully kills another human being while driving a motor vehicle.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Vehicular Manslaughter include:

  • Long-term imprisonment
  • Probation or Parole
  • Revocation of driving privilege
  • Significant fines
  • Higher insurance rates
  • Other

Defenses for Vehicular Manslaughter may potentially include:

  • Proving not at fault
  • Proving lack of negligence
  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Other

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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Domestic violence is when a person has willfully inflicted severe bodily injury upon his/her spouse or a co-habiting person.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Domestic Violence include:

  • Mandatory domestic counseling
  • Probation or parole
  • Imprisonment
  • Mandatory anger management class
  • Significant fines
  • Loss of the right to own a deadly weapon
  • Punitive divorce court settlements
  • Loss of custody and/or visitation rights with children
  • Other

Defenses for Domestic Violence may potentially include:

  • Proving act of self defense
  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving act was justifiable / excusable
  • Other

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DRUNK DRIVING

Drunk driving is when a person operates a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, controlled substance, medication, or prescription that impairs the driver's ability.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Driving Under the Influence include:

  • Imprisonment
  • Revocation of driver's license
  • Probation or parole
  • Revocation of auto insurance or higher rates
  • Mandatory driving school
  • Impounding of vehicle
  • Mandatory installation of ignition device
  • Significant fines
  • Other

Defenses for Driving Under the Influence may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving illegal or improper police procedure
  • Other

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ASSAULT & BATTERY

Although tort law separates these two terms, under criminal law, assault and battery are considered a single offense wherein a person threatens immediate physical violence of which the person is immediately capable and that threat creates a well-founded fear of violence in the other person.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Assault and Battery include:

  • Imprisonment or jail term
  • Probation or parole
  • Mandatory anger management class
  • Significant fines
  • Loss of the right to own a deadly weapon
  • Other

Defenses for Assault and Battery may potentially include:

  • Showing motivation by defense of self / others / property
  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving threat was not practicable or fear unfounded
  • Other

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EXTORTION

Extortion is when a person obtains property from the alleged victim by consent induced through the wrongful use of force or fear induced with the specific intent to induce the alleged victim to consent to the giving up of their property.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Extortion include:

  • Imprisonment
  • Probation or parole
  • Loss of the right to be bonded, which has serious consequences for employment
  • Payment of restitution to the victims
  • Mandatory counseling
  • Significant fines above and beyond restitution
  • Other

Defenses of Extortion may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving accused was true owner of property in question
  • Proving that consent was not induced through force or fear
  • Other

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DRUG OFFENSES

Drug offenses constitute a whole series of crimes in which a person had actual or constructive possession of a controlled substance, the person knew of its presence, and the person knew of its nature as a controlled substance, and the substance was in an amount sufficient to be used as a controlled substance, and the person intended to use, sell, or barter the substance for illegal purposes.

Consequences for a conviction on the charge of Drug Offenses include:

  • Imprisonment
  • Probation or parole
  • Registration as a narcotics offender for life
  • Mandatory periodic drug testing
  • Court ordered counseling or rehabilitation
  • Revocation of driver's license
  • Search and seizure of motor vehicle
  • Search and seizure of property
  • Significant fines
  • Other

Defenses of Drug Offenses may potentially include:

  • Showing insufficient evidence
  • Proving factual innocence
  • Proving valid prescription or other legal rationale for possession
  • Proving illegal or improper police procedure
  • Other

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The statement above is not legal advice! This statement is not intended to be a correct statement of law in your jurisdiction. This statement is intended to give you a very general understanding of what is involved in this type of crime. Please consult an attorney to find out what law applies in your jurisdiction.

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The Cochran Firm handles Civil Litigation and Criminal Defense claims for clients throughout the United States of America. The information on this website does not constitute legal advice nor form an attorney-client relationship.Please contact The Cochran Firm today to schedule a free consultation.

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