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Northern Virginia General Law Blog

Helping you assert a strong criminal defense strategy

Being accused of a criminal charge is a serious situation even if the charge is not considered serious. For the most part, this is an overwhelming situation and one that causes a defendant to have many questions. It is nerve wrecking to see the evidence piling up against you; however, defendants should not let this deter them. It is still possible to build up a strong defense, helping to get rid of some or all of this evidence against you.

At Boyce, Leahy & Francescon Lawyers, our skilled attorneys understand that a criminal defense's strength lies with what the judge and jury will hear. Because of this, we take the time to assess the evidence collected, the credibility of the witnesses and whether there are any issues related to an unlawful search and seizure. We use all of our resources to ensure that the best defense possible is used for our clients in the Manassas area.

Penalties associated with child pornography allegations

Being accused of certain crimes can be extremely impactful and detrimental to a defendant's life. Facing allegations of possessing child pornography is not a situation to take lightly. Not only do these allegations damage a person's reputation but also they are criminal charges that carry with them serious penalties. Thus, it is vital to understand this matter to its fullest, exploring criminal defense options.

In the state of Virginia, anyone who knowingly possesses child pornography is guilty of a Class 6 felony, and any person who commits a second or subsequent violation is guilty of a Class 5 felony. A person guilty of intentionally operating an Internet website for the sole purpose of facilitating the access of child pornography through payment is charged with a Class 4 felony.

Speeding is a serious offense in the Commonwealth

The court system treats speeding as a serious offense in Virginia, especially if a driver has previously received a conviction for DUI or other traffic-related issues.

Speeding is a form of aggressive driving and, in the Commonwealth, a conviction can bring some severe penalties.

What are the penalties in Virginia for first time drug offenders?

Being accused of a drug crime is a serious situation. If this is a person's first run-in with the law, this can be a very overwhelming and scary situation. However, even if the accused offender has a criminal history, the penalties that often follow a conviction of a drug charge can be harsh. No matter a person's situation, it is important to understand the scenario and what penalties one might face.

What are the penalties in Virginia for first time drug offenders? With charges related to possession of narcotic drugs, marijuana, stimulants, depressants or hallucinogenic drugs, a first-time offender could have a criminal proceeding against them dismissed provided that they plead guilty, are placed on probation and follow terms and conditions of the plea.

Virginia woman faces multiple drug charges after traffic stop

Being stopped by law enforcement is anything bet enjoyable by motorists, however, traffic stops can occur for many reasons. Whether it is a minor or major infraction, a traffic stop could lead to officers investigating a driver for more than what the driver was stopped for. Therefore, it is important to consider a defense process that can help address any and all criminal charges he or she is facing due to a traffic stop.

A Virginia woman was recently arrested following a traffic stop. Reports indicated that the woman attempted to flee from police during the traffic stop. Apparently, the woman was stopped for an equipment violation. During the stop, the officer claimed that he detected an odor of marijuana coming form the vehicle.

Penalties for a parole violation

Being accused of a crime is tough. It is even more challenging facing conviction. Penalties associated with a criminal charge can be harsh; however, some offenders are afforded the opportunity to reduce his or her term of imprisonment. A conditional release before the end of an offender's sentence is complete is known as parole. If an individual is granted parole, it is vital to understand the terms of his or her release. Violating parole could result in criminal consequences.

Essentially, when a person is on parole, he or she is still under sentencing; however, he or she is now serving time outside of confinement. Therefore, any violation of the terms outlined for probation could result in an individual returning to jail.

When could you face gun charges?

As United States citizens, individuals in Virginia and elsewhere are likely aware of their rights protected by the Constitution. While one may not have all of these memorized, some of these rights are better known than others. Take, for example, the right to bear arms. The Second Amendment provides this right; however, there are some exceptions, especially if a person is not permitted to own or use a gun or is unlawfully possessing a firearm. Thus, an individual could face charges for a gun crime.

There are certain times when a person cannot possess a gun for personal or business use. This occurs when a person is convicted of a crime that is punishable with a prison term for more than one year; if they are a fugitive from justice; if they are addicted to or illegally use any controlled substance; if they have been ruled mentally defective by a court or are committed to a mental institution; if they are an illegal alien that is living in the U.S. unlawfully; if they were dishonorably discharged from the military; if they renounced their U.S. citizenship; if they are subject to a restraining order that involves an intimate partner; or if they were convicted of domestic violence as a misdemeanor. A criminal charge could result if a person is unlawfully in possession of a firearm.

Challenging evidence for DUI includes the breath test

If you are arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol in the Commonwealth of Virginia, you will be required to take a breath test.

You may be nervous about the results produced by a breathalyzer, thinking that this kind of machine is infallible. This is not so. An incident in Philadelphia proves that breathalyzers can have problems.

A strong defense requires a hard look at the evidence

Being charged with a crime can be an overwhelming experience, but the accused do have the right to a defense and must be presumed innocent until proven guilty. By poking holes in the prosecution's case, a defendant can increase his or her chances of having the charges against them reduced or even dismissed.

In some cases, a defendant can show that police exceeded their authority in a search or arrest, violating the defendant's constitutional rights under the Fourth Amendment. In such cases, the court may have to suppress the evidence, greatly weakening the prosecution's case.

Understanding probation violations

The release of an offender can be subject to conditions or alternatives to incarceration can be implemented. Probation is frequently used as a form of criminal penalty; however, it is also used to reduce the prison population. Depending on the crime a person is charged with or convicted of, specific terms outline what an offender can and cannot do. Violating these terms and conditions could result in a person facing additional criminal penalties. Thus, it is important to understand the situation, whether a violation actually occurred and what defense options are available.

A probation violation occurs when a person breaks the terms or conditions of their probation. There are consequences associated with a probation violation, however, this is dependent on the nature of the violation and how serious it was. Additionally, factors such as prior violations as well as specific circumstances that could lessen or worsen the severity of the matter are taken into consideration. It is possible for a probation violation to result in harsh penalties, including hefty fines, extended probation and even jail time.

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Manassas, VA 20110

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