The holiday season between Thanksgiving and New Years are among the happiest times of the year for many people. People have more time off to spend time with their families and loved ones. However, the holiday season may also cause an increase in certain risky behavior that may lead to criminal conduct and criminal charges. If you are suspected of committing a crime and make the wrong statement, you could be facing significant criminal fines or prison time. However, every American has a Constitutional right to an attorney if they are accuse of a crime. Below are some common criminal charges during the holidays:
Automobile Deaths and DUI Deaths
Vehicular manslaughter from a DUI is a serious crime. Vehicular manslaughter in most states is considered the operation of a motor vehicle in an unlawful and/or negligent manner which ultimately causes the death of another person. A convicted defendant can also have his or her driver’s license revoked. The sentence for vehicular manslaughter may be greater if the defendant was intoxicated. Be sure to speak with an attorney if you are accused of an automobile death.
Larceny, Robbery, and Other Property Crimes
Property crimes are some of the most common charged crimes in any state. Property crimes may range from simple shoplifting to burglary or motor vehicle theft. Certain property crimes may increase during a holiday season. Shoplifters without money to purchase gifts may be tempted to take an item even if they cannot afford it. Robberies may also increase as potential victims often carry more cash during the holiday season.
The potential sentences for property crimes scale with how severe the crime is. A robbery felony conviction will likely carry a greater sentence than larceny. Criminal fines may be imposed and prison time may range from a few days to a few decades. There are potential defenses to property crimes so consult with an attorney if you are accused of a property crime.
Domestic violence often increases during the holidays. Domestic violence often increases due to financial pressure to purchase gifts and excessive alcohol consumption. Child custody and visitation disputes often trigger violence between parents. Domestic violence can occur regardless of gender, age, or legal status of the relationship (marriage, girlfriend/boyfriend, or roommates).
Domestic abuse includes any conduct that causes or threatens to cause injury between family members, spouses, and/or residents of the same household. Domestic abuse can also include non-physical conduct, such as stalking, threatening violence, or even degrading language.
One potential legal solution is to apply for a restraining order. Restraining orders, or protective orders, are court orders restricting one person from harming another. Restraining orders typically require the offending individual to do, or refrain from doing, a specific action. An example of this would be requiring the abuser to stay fifteen feet away from the victim, or cease all contact.
Do I Need an Attorney for a Criminal Law Issue?
If you have been the victim of a crime, you should call the police immediately. A criminal prosecutor may be able to assist in punishing the wrongdoer. You may also wish to contact a civil attorney to assist you in filing a civil suit against the accused.
If you are a criminal defendant or suspect, you should contact a local criminal defense attorney. An attorney can defend your rights and interests and will know the best strategies to help you get the best outcome possible in your case. With criminal charges, access to a criminal defense attorney is your right.