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Drunk Driving Convictions and Potential Deportation

A driving under the influence conviction in Massachusetts is a serious thing because it can mean that you will have to pay a fine and face jail time, but you will also establish a permanent criminal record, add points to your driver’s license, and face loss of your driving privileges for some amount of time. Yet another possible consequence of an aggravated drunk driving conviction is deportation from the United States Continue Reading

Imagine that you are out on the town with your friends having a good time. You have not seen each other in a while, and thought that it would be fun to get some drinks and catch up. After throwing back a few, you all start to reminisce about your younger, crazy days together. Pretty soon a walk down memory lane turns into action: Your group decides to go out and do something crazy like when you were younger! Your group ends up at a local nightclub, and while exercising poor judgement due to your excessive drinking, one of your friends dares you to pull the fire alarm. You are under the influence and not thinking clearly, so you decide to take the dare. You quickly run up to a fire alarm and pull the handle. Panic and confusion at the club ensues because the patrons do not know that there is no real emergency. The club has to be evacuated, and the fire department arrives to conduct an inspection before anyone is allowed to return to the club. Now you are going to be charged with disorderly conduct.


Disorderly Conduct

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The Crime of Mayhem

It is not uncommon when a fight breaks out at a bar or some other public place for the fight participants to do whatever it takes to win. The fighters might punch one another, slap each other, kick, or hurl objects at the other, and sometimes one of the fighters might even bite the other if the fight gets up close and personal. When a fight involves biting, or some other form of harm that is capable of producing long-term disfigurement or scarring, the individual who caused the injury is often charged with the crime of mayhem, on top of being charged with other criminal offenses, such as assault and battery. Continue Reading


OUI Marijuana

On September 19, 2017 the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decided the case of Commonwealth v. Gerhardt, SJC – 11967. This dealt with the admissibility of field sobriety tests as they relate to operating a motor vehicle under the influence of, or OUI marijuana. The Court held that in these cases, the term “field sobriety tests” cannot be used in court, rather the tests can be called “roadside assessments”. The Supreme Judicial Court further held that the officer cannot conclude that the driver passed or failed the test. Finally, the Court in Gerhardt crafted a jury instruction addressing the value of the roadside assessments that strongly assists the defense in these cases. Continue Reading


Threatening to Commit a Crime

Most people do not realize that threatening to commit a crime in Massachusetts is actually a crime itself. Someone who makes a threat against someone or property can be charged with a crime under M.G.L. Chapter 275, Section 2. While a threat to commit a crime is clearly not as serious as actually committing the crime itself, it is still a criminal matter and charges for making a threat to commit a crime should be taken and defended against seriously. The gravity of the charge is fact specific. The more serious the threat the more ardent the prosecution. Continue Reading


Criminal Charge Stacking

Sometimes when law enforcement officers makes an arrest, they charge as many crimes as they can at once. Police have the right to use their discretion when asserting criminal charges, and they sometimes err on the side of caution and assert more charges than is actually fair. This processes is known as criminal charge stacking and it affects many criminal defendants in Massachusetts. You may have heard of police making numerous charges in an attempt to see what charges stick after being scrutinized by the court, that is exactly what charge stacking is. Continue Reading


Sex For a Fee Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, soliciting a prostitute or the act of prostitution is a crime under G.L. c. 272 Section 53A. The statute has a variety of subsections that make a conviction for this crime punishable by up to ten years in some circumstances. Until recently first time offenders were offered pretrial probation under G.L. c. 276 Section 87 for one year with the condition they take a short class on the dangers of engaging in this activity. In the last few months, in many counties this has changed. Prosecutors are now making sex for a fee cases more difficult to defend. Continue Reading


Massachusetts Drug Cases

The Annie Dookhan saga continues in the High Court of Massachusetts. The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has ordered state prosecutors to review the 24,000 Massachusetts drug cases that had been handled – or rather, potentially mishandled – by Annie Dookhan between 2003 and 2011.  Some 20,000 criminal defendants who were convicted of drug charges could potentially have their convictions dismissed, or cases retried, as a result of the state’s debacle concerning Ms. Dookhan’s misconduct while working in a Boston-area drug analytics lab. Continue Reading


Domestic Assault and Battery and Deportation

Any experienced criminal defense attorney will tell you that if you charged with domestic assault and battery and you are not a citizen you are at risk of being deported. That risk has increased exponentially over the past several months. This is likely the result of the current political climate in this country. Government agencies such as ICE and Homeland Security are now taking an active look at these cases before disposition. In many instances they are monitoring domestic assault and battery cases involving non-citizens shortly after arrest or arraignment. This post examines one such case and what is needed to prevent deportation. Continue Reading


Massachusetts Marijuana Laws

Marijuana has been legalized in Massachusetts for just a few months and legislators are already trying to prune back some of the provisions concerning the cultivation of marijuana, among other changes that could curb how people use and grow marijuana in the future. Being one of the first states to adopt legalization of marijuana statewide, the Commonwealth is struggling to get comfortable with the idea that marijuana is legal, that small amounts can be possessed without fear of prosecution, and that Massachusetts residents can grow cannabis in their homes if they so choose. Massachusetts marijuana laws however are evolving.  Continue Reading