Help! My High School Student’s Locker Was Searched

We’re all aware of the recent senseless school shooting in Parkland, Florida. This has resulted in more calls for beefing up school security. With that, tensions flare between privacy, freedom, and individual rights versus the school’s need for safety. Fourth Amendment and Search and Seizure Watch CNN, Law & Order, or any television police, crime, […]

Shoplifting Is Big Business

The National Association for Shoplifting Prevention (NASP) reports some staggering statistics. There are 27 million shoplifters in the United States today. This averages to about one out of every 11 persons. You might think shoplifting is a crime associated with teenagers, but out of this group, 75 percent are adults, and only 25 percent are […]

What Is Manslaughter?

In Florida, manslaughter is a killing of another human being that does not meet the requirements of murder. Unlike murder, manslaughter does not require premeditation. Florida breaks manslaughter into two different categories: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter. What are the elements of voluntary manslaughter? For voluntary manslaughter, the elements usually consist of knowing the actions […]

What is a Plea Bargain?

A plea bargain is an agreement between the defendant and prosecutor that involves the prosecutor recommending a lighter sentence or bringing less serious charges in exchange for the defendant pleading guilty. According to the Department of Justice, 90 percent to 95 percent of all cases are resolved through plea-bargaining. Some defendants choose no contest or […]

Marijuana Arrests are Serious

With the legalization of marijuana on the rise across the United States, it is easy to underestimate the seriousness of marijuana arrests. According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), most drug arrests involve illegal possession or abuse of marijuana. Additionally, 88 percent of marijuana arrests between the years 2001 and 2008 were for simple […]

Can the Police Peek in Your Windows?

Generally, in Florida, police cannot search a person’s property without a search warrant or consent from the owner of that property—unless some type of exception applies. Under the Fourth Amendment, people have a reasonable expectation of privacy and government may not engage in an unreasonable search and/or seizure. When they do, the evidence that they […]

What is DUI Manslaughter?

DUI manslaughter is a serious crime in Florida that can result in equally serious penalties. In Florida, if a driver causes another person’s death while operating a motor vehicle and while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then the State can charge him or her with DUI manslaughter. If a judge or jury convicts […]

Sharing Your Prescription Pills is a Crime

Giving Xanax to a friend or family member before a long flight—or lending someone else your old pain pills after suffering an injury may seem harmless. When it comes to sharing prescription pills—especially with friends or family—many people take a “who cares” attitude. However, in Florida, sharing prescription pills is actually a crime that can […]

Insurance Fraud is a Serious Crime

Insurance fraud is usually classified as a type of white-collar crime. “White collar crimes” are financially motivated and are usually accomplished with a pen or a computer—rather than with a gun or illegal drugs. Significantly, white collar crimes like insurance fraud can be prosecuted under both state and federal laws, and the penalties upon conviction […]

How a Marijuana Arrest Can Derail Your Future

In the State of Florida, marijuana remains illegal unless it used for medical purposes by an individual who has obtained a doctor’s authorization to use it. If you are charged with or convicted of a crime related to the possession or distribution of marijuana, you will have a criminal record. This record will be accessible […]