Arguably finding out there is a warrant out for your arrest can be one of the scariest parts of a criminal matter. Often people have never been in trouble before, don’t know what they’re being charged with, and don’t know what to do. While we can only give general advice without knowing the details of any particular case, in general it is best to contact and attorney and make a plan to turn yourself in. Then someone who is experienced in these matters can either get your arraignment waived or accompany you to the arraignment to ensure your rights are protected and have the bench warrant removed. This initial conversation is a good time to find out what the possible long term results of the crime you have been charged with are, and how we can work to mitigate them.
As part of a larger court of specialized courts such as the Drug Court, or Mental Health Court, Wayne County recently instituted the Solutions Oriented Domestic Violence Prevention Court. On April 25th, 2011 it heard its first case.
Funded by federal grants, the Court is meant to address the larger problem of domestic violence within families through combining all cases involving the parties which will then be heard by one of three judges who are specially trained in issues of domestic violence.
Cases are selected for referral to the SODVPC at the time a Personal Protection Order petition is filed. If the filing clerk believes there is a high probability of fatality, or the abuse alleged is very severe, a representative will interview the Petitioner to further assess the probability of mortality. If it is considered probable, the Petitioner will be offered the opportunity to transfer the case to the SODVPC.
If it is transferred, all pending cases will be consolidated and heard by one of following Judges: Halloran, Elder, or Kelley. Other than that, the PPO matter will be handled in the same way as usual.
As a new court it is hard to know whether SODVPC will turn out to be advantageous or disadvantageous to a Defendant/PPO Respondent. On one hand, if your case is assigned to SODVPC it means it has been evaluated and found to be very severe. However this does not mean the allegations are true or not. If Petitioner’s claims are false, you stand just as good of a chance of being exonerated in SODVPC as any other court. Additionally, the Judge’s additional training may be to your advantage in rooting out the truth of what really happened.
Previously juvenile court used to be a strictly rehabilitative venture. The consequences were light and the court had the best interests of the child alone at heart. As it evolved though, it became more of a punitive endeavor, taking the best interest of the public into consideration in sentencing. As a result attorneys began to get involved to protect the liberties and due process rights of the children being charged. As an example of this shift, one need only look as far as the 35th district court. In the Northville/Plymouth area juvenile offenses are now handled out of the same court as adult offenses. While there are some differences such as dedicated probation officers and the application of juvenile as opposed to adult law, this is still a dramatic difference. If you or your child have been charged in the 35th district court or any other, you need an experienced advocate to represent you. This is not the time to let your child learn a lesson, as the court has made a clear statement it is no longer playing the role of a disciplining parent but rather a punitive body. An experienced attorney can work to get you one of these “best case scenarios.”
The results we got this morning in Roseville District Court are too exciting not to share! Our client was charged with a misdemeanor leaving the scene of a property damage accident and a careless driving charge. These are very serious charges carrying possible sentences of 93 days in jail, $500.00 fines, court costs, fees, and even possible licensing sanctions. We were able to negotiate with the prosecutor on his behalf and get him a plea deal where he only received a two point infraction for failure to stop within an assured clear distance. In a few years these points will fall of his driving record and most importantly, he will have no criminal record at all! This will help him in the future because it makes him a more attractive employee, will not pop up on background checks, or generally cause any trouble for him in the future.
Trespassing in Michigan is very common, and depending on the circumstances can be a felony or misdemeanor charge. You may be charged under local ordinance, or state law. Michigan law has further narrowed the crime through a series of laws prohibiting trespassing to specific locations such as railroads, or cars. Trespassing can carry heavy court fines, fees, and even jail time. An experienced attorney can negotiate with the prosecutor or city attorney to get these charges reduced, modified, or even dismissed.
The attorneys of Garmo & Kiste, PLC have experience in all Metro Detroit Courts and know the prosecutors, city attorneys, and judges who may be assigned to your case. To retain Garmo & Kiste on these or other matters, PLC call us at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.
Often people are unsure exactly why they should hire a lawyer in a criminal matter rather than have a public defender or just represent themselves. However, people who show up to Court unrepresented or without a committed advocate are really missing out on a lot of opportunities that may be available to them. For example, in Michigan you may have the option to plead guilty under what is called a Cobb’s Agreement. This means that in exchange for a guilty plea, the Judge agrees to sentence you within some range, usually much lower than what you would otherwise be facing. Cobb’s agreements can be a win-win since the Court doesn’t want to waste its time doing your trial, you want to save money, and can be assured a good result.
If you think a Cobb’s Agreement might be right for you, it is important to hire an experienced criminal attorney in order to ensure you are getting exactly what you bargained for. While this and many options like this are available to those represented by court appointed attorneys and in pro per, it can be difficult to negotiate the complicated options that you are eligible for and how to best take advantage of them. Court appointed attorneys may do 15-20 hearings a morning, so they don’t have adequate time to consider the nuances of your case.
Larceny of a Motor Vehicle or Trailer is a more specific kind of larceny described in MCL 750.356a. Similarly to general larceny, the charge can be either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on your criminal history, the amount of property stolen, etc. The attorneys of Garmo & Kiste, PLC have experience working in all of the metro Detroit courts with the very judges, prosecutors, and city attorneys who may be assigned your case. Our attorneys can use this experience to negotiate the charges, arrange a plea agreement, or even get the charges dropped. In some cases if you are eligible we can work to get you sentenced pursuant to a diversionary program so that after a period of probation and good behavior, your record will be clean. This is important because when it comes to looking for a job or a new apartment even if you have the same qualifications as another candidate, if you have a criminal record it makes you less desirable to employers and landlords. This is one of those cases where investing in a good attorney is an investment in your future.
Larceny is legalese for theft that does not meet any more specific type of theft. In Michigan, the crime of larceny is described in MCL 750.356. Depending on the value of the goods stolen, and the number of prior convictions a larceny can be either a misdemeanor or a felony carrying heavy court fees, restitution, and jail time. If you or someone you love has been charged with larceny it is important to hire an experienced criminal lawyer right away. We can make sure your rights are protected and negotiate with the prosecutor assigned to your case in order to attempt to reduce, modify, or even dismiss the charges. In some cases if you are eligible we can work to get you sentenced pursuant to a diversionary program so that after a period of probation and good behavior, your record will be clean. This is important because when it comes to looking for a job or a new apartment even if you have the same qualifications as another candidate, if you have a criminal record it makes you less desirable to employers and landlords. This is one of those cases where investing in a good attorney is an investment in your future.
While sexting may seem like harmless fun, if either of the parties are under the age of 18 it can result in some very serious charges. The state sees this as the creation and distribution of child pornography. Even the child him or herself can be charged, and if a computer was involved at any time it can result in sentence enhancements. If you or a loved one have been charged with a crime associated with sexting it is important to retain an experienced criminal lawyer to protect your rights. Our experienced attorneys are regulars at metro Detroit courts and have developed relationships with local judges, prosecutors, and city attorneys who will be assigned to your case. We can negotiate with the prosecutor to get these charges reduced, modified, or even dismissed. We can work to get you sentenced pursuant to a diversionary program so that if all goes well your record will eventually be clean.
Whether you are living in the dorms with an assigned roommate, or living off campus with friends, there are times when your roommate’s actions can put you at legal risk. If your roommate is committing some drug crimes such as manufacture, distribution, or even possession, in some cases you could also be charged. If the police believe you were aware of what was going on or involved you can be charged as well. If you do not hire an experienced attorney to protect your rights, you could end up going down for the same crimes as the guilty party. If you find yourself in this situation, it is important to contact an attorney sooner than later as drug charges can affect your financial aid eligibility.
An experienced attorney can negotiate for a plea agreement get the charges reduced, modified, or even dismissed. Even if you have already been sentenced we may be able to get you sentenced pursuant to a diversionary program with the effect that the charge will eventually fall off your record after a probationary period of good behavior.