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Kansas City Criminal Defense Law Blog

Information about the role of bail bondmen in felony cases

Last week, we discussed the options that are available for a person who is facing a felony charge to get out of jail. If you recall, we discussed how some people who face a felony charge will be given a bail. Once the court sets the bail amount, there are three options that are possible.

The first is that the person will remain in jail until the case is resolved because he or she can't post the bail. The second is that the person will post the full bail amount to be released from jail. The third is that the person will use a bail bondsman to get him or herself out of jail.

Options for release from jail while criminal case is pending

When you are charged with a felony charge, you will be arrested and sent for a bail hearing. A bail hearing is a chance for you to learn the conditions that must occur in order for you to get out of jail until your trial date or until your case is finished. In most cases, there are three options that might be presented at a bail hearing -- denial of bail, a release on your own recognizance or a bail amount set.

If you are denied bail, which can occur if you have violent charges like capital murder or are considered a flight risk, you will remain in jail for the duration of your case. If you are granted a release on your own recognizance, you will be allowed to leave jail without having to put up any money. You must attend all the court dates for your case or you will have a warrant issued for your arrest.

Don't let a DUI charge ruin your winter holiday season

The busy holiday season is coming up. Halloween is right around the corner and the other winter holidays will follow shortly. Parties during this time often involve alcohol. If you are consuming alcohol, the best way that you can ensure you aren't arrested for drunk driving is to have a designated driver. If you are unable to find a designated driver and find that you have to drive yourself home, you might end up being arrested.

We know that the circumstances you find yourself in might necessitate your having to get behind the wheel after the party. We can help you to explore your defense options to determine how you want to move forward with your DUI defense.

What does consent mean in a sex-related criminal case?

Sex-related criminal charges in Missouri encompass a variety of different charges. The one thing that all sex-related criminal charges have in common is that they all must have the element of lack of consent to the sexual activities.

Is consent always required for sexual activities?

Halloween comes with specific laws for registered sex offenders

Halloween is just around the corner. While this is a popular holiday for many children and adults, it can mean trouble for sex offenders. Missouri is one of the states that has specific laws that forbid registered sex offenders from taking part in any Halloween festivities that involve children. Failing to abide by the laws regarding Halloween and sex offenders can lead to a sex offender facing new criminal charges.

As we previously discussed, sex offenders can't participate in any Halloween activities involving children. That includes passing out candy. All registered sex offenders are required to keep their lights off during the trick or treating hours for their community. Additionally, a sign must be placed at the residence that says, "No candy or treats at this residence."

Fight the allegations against you in a criminal case

In our previous two blog posts, we have focused on drug crimes. While drug crimes are very serious crimes, there are also some very other serious charges that a person might face. Some of these, such as violent crimes like rape, and white collar crimes like embezzlement, are also very serious. In fact, any criminal charge can be serious because any criminal charge on a background check can have a big impact on your life.

We know that the stress of dealing with a criminal charge can be debilitating. It is vital that you work to understand the charges against you and the options you have for a defense. By gaining understanding, you might be able to reduce some of the stress you feel. This might help to give you a clearer mind when you are making choices about how to proceed with your defense.

Marijuana-related convictions carry harsh penalties in Missouri

News about the decriminalization of marijuana seems to be occurring at a rapid pace. While some states have opted to decriminalize the drug or even legalize it, the federal government hasn't changed federal laws pertaining to the drug. Missouri laws still takes a harsh stance against marijuana, so building a defense if you are charged with a crime relating to marijuana is vital.

The penalties for marijuana-related convictions in Missouri are so severe that you can face time in jail for having the equivalent of one joint of marijuana. Selling 30 grams or more of marijuana can carry a life sentence. In some cases, mandatory minimum sentences apply to marijuana-related convictions.

What is drug possession with the intent to distribute?

A person who is accused of having drugs can face a multitude of charges. One of those charges is possession with the intent to distribute. This charge is a complex charge for drug crimes because it involves three elements. Understanding those elements can help you better plan your defense if you are facing a possession with the intent to distribute charge.

What are the three elements of a possession with the intent to deliver?

Defendant cleared of high-stakes assault charge in drug deal

A criminal defendant from nearby Wichita, Kansas, has been acquitted of felony murder in connection with a deadly drug deal. The defendant was accused of causing the fatal assault during an exchange in which marijuana was sold. However, the man's family members and community rallied around him, arguing that his case should never have been considered in the violent crimes category that generally encompasses a felony murder charge.

The man in this case was tried under a law that expands the definition of felony murder to capture a larger group of defendants. That Kansas law states that anyone who participates in an illegal activity in which someone dies may be held accountable for felony murder, even if he or she is never accused of the use of a weapon or other assault charges. Charges ranging from drug trafficking to robbery may escalate to felony murder, even if the defendant did not participate in any activity that directly caused the victim's death.

Take swift action when you are charged with drunk driving

Last week, we discussed the story of the 15 people who are facing charges after getting caught at a sobriety checkpoint. It is no secret that drunk driving charges carry some serious penalties if you are convicted. How you are caught drunk driving has very little bearing on how your case is handled from the prosecution's side. We know that how you were caught can sometimes have a significant impact on your defense.

When we investigate a drunk driving case, we look into what happened just prior to the arrest. We consider the reason why you were stopped, how the police initiated the stop, how the police moved through the procedures during the stop and how the Breathalyzer was handled. We understand that it is important to scrutinize every second of the incident to determine if there were any errors made.

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