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Criminal Defense Archives

Troubling statistics illustrate rising arrest rate

In Florida and across the country, an increasing number of Americans, especially young people, have been arrested. In fact, young people are much more likely to be arrested than they were in generations past. This comes despite the fact that violent crime has been dropping for decades. However, researchers note that while arrests may seem less necessary than in the past, police may be more likely to turn to arrests and criminal charges for relatively petty matters. Criminal arrests, charges and convictions can interfere with a person's ability to gain employment, education and housing for many years to come, so the increasing arrest rate is of concern to many.

Problems for felons in America

Felons in the United States lose many of their rights after a conviction. In addition to the more well-known losses of the rights to bear arms and vote, felons also cannot serve on a jury, live in certain places or adopt children. There are those who question whether America is too strict when it comes to felons, and South Carolina residents might wish to know more about this topic.

Cognitive bias may play a role in wrongful convictions

In some cases, police or prosecutors in South Carolina and other states will engage in misconduct that wrongfully sends a defendant to prison. However, researchers from Texas State University say that defendants are wrongfully convicted based on a variety of other factors. For instance, police may develop tunnel vision after identifying the individual who they believe likely committed the crime. Instead of objectively viewing the evidence, authorities may try to make it fit their narrative.

Poor punished for not paying citation fees, court fines

For years, politicians in South Carolina who have promised citizens to not raise taxes have been forced to increase fines and court fees as a means of running the state. Unfortunately, many of these fines and court fees result in jail time and probation when they can't be paid. Many people believe that these policies end up hurting members of the lower class.

Few federal cases actually go to trial

In fiscal year 2018, there were roughly 80,000 defendants from South Carolina and other states who were charged with federal crimes. Of those defendants, only 2% decided to take their cases to trial, and another 8% had their cases dismissed according to the Pew Research Center. That means that in 90% of cases, defendants chose to plead guilty instead of taking their cases to trial. Of those who chose to go to trial, only 320 were acquitted by a judge or a jury.

First Step Act could move toward justice reform

For people in South Carolina who have interacted with the federal criminal justice system, the First Step Act could be of serious interest. The bill has been endorsed by a wide and unusual coalition of supporters, ranging from President Donald Trump to longtime criminal justice reform advocates like the American Civil Liberties Union. The First Step Act is widely regarded as a compromise proposal, and it has received a number of criticisms. Some say that the bill is too weak to address real flaws in the system. For those who could be affected by the legislation, it is important to understand its provisions.

Nine in custody after South Carolina drug busts

If you drive about an hour and a half west of Myrtle Beach, you will come to Lake City, South Carolina. The town is perhaps best known as the home of Dr. Ronald E. McNair, one of the astronauts who died many years ago in the ill-fated Challenger shuttle explosion.

Criminal defense: Routine traffic stop results in drug bust

A man from out of state was operating his vehicle in the Myrtle Beach area when he allegedly ran a stop sign. Upon seeing this, police initiated a traffic stop and things just went downhill from there for the driver. He was ultimately arrested on drug charges. Due to the severity of the charges filed against the accused, the criminal defense offered is going to make or break this case.

South Carolina criminal defense: Accused of shoplifting?

In South Carolina and elsewhere, shoplifting is an issue that plagues numerous business owners. There are those who believe this to be a harmless act, but the truth of the matter is it hurts retailers and the loss, if significant enough, gets passed onto consumers in the form of increased prices. Because so many people can be affected by shoplifting, the state does not take this type of crime lightly. As such, those accused of shoplifting could benefit from a strong criminal defense to help them achieve the best outcomes to their cases.

Let a criminal defense attorney help you with that theft charge

Have you been arrested and charged with committing theft? If you have, you could face some substantial consequences if you are convicted in a South Carolina criminal court. At the end of the day, the outcome of your case will all depend on the details of the event for which you stand accused and how you choose to defend yourself. Coming up with a defense strategy is something with which a criminal defense attorney can help.

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