Greg D. Rawlings, P.C.

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Domestic violence and what do I do if I am charged with it?

October is Domestic Violence Awareness month. The month provides an opportunity to better understand the topic of domestic violence. Domestic abuse can be both physical and psychological and occurs when one intimate partner, such as a spouse or other type of intimate partner, attempts to dominate the other through physical and psychological means. Domestic violence is the name given to the abuse when it includes a physical component.

Domestic violence can occur between both straight and gay couples and across all ethnicities and economic backgrounds. Domestic violence takes place at any age and men may also be recipients of domestic abuse. It is, therefore, important for both men and women to recognize the signs of abuse. The physical component of domestic abuse is the use of force that endangers or injures an intimate partner which is committed by an intimate partner. Physical assault and battery are crimes which can lead to criminal charges and involve the police.

Man faces DUI and felony charges in Colorado after accident

The criminal law process may seem complex but understanding the ways it works to protect accused individuals can be important. Following a motor vehicle accident in a Denver suburb, a 54-year old man is facing DUI and vehicular homicide charges. The accident killed one 17-year old teenage girl and injured another 18-year old. According to authorities, the man was driving southbound when he crossed multiple lanes of traffic and collided with the northbound vehicle the two teenage girls were in. The man was arrested for driving under the influence, reckless driving, vehicular assault and vehicular homicide. According to police, the man does not have a prior arrest record in Colorado and his blood alcohol content level was twice the 0.08 legal limit in Colorado.

Both felony charges and DUI charges have significant potential to disrupt the life of an accused party in undesirable ways. By definition, felony charges, such as vehicular assault and vehicular homicide can carry severe penalties, including more than a year in prison. DUI charges can also carry serious penalties which can be both criminal and administrative in nature.

Colorado man arrested for domestic violence, faces gun charges

The right to prepare and present a criminal defense to criminal charges is an important right that is guaranteed by the criminal justice system. A man was recently arrested south of the Denver area following a standoff with police. The 37-year old man was allegedly locked in a home with a shotgun. Negotiators were able to end the standoff. The man was arrested and charged with felony domestic violence. According to authorities, the man is a convicted felon so because he was allegedly armed with a shotgun, weapons charges are also pending against him.

Illegal weapons possession charges can be serious and threaten serious consequences and potential penalties. Both federal and state gun laws exist. In Colorado, as under federal law, it is illegal for a person who has been convicted of a felony to own or possess a gun. Some weapons are considered illegal in Colorado and others may be illegal in certain circumstances, such as when the accused individual already has a felony conviction.

Understanding driving under the influence of drugs in Colorado

When considering changes to Colorado drug laws, it can be important to understand the important implications of those changes. For instance, it is not legal in Colorado to get behind the wheel of a vehicle and drive while experiencing the effects of a drug even when use of the drug is legal. Driving under the influence of drugs is illegal and can lead to criminal charges and penalties. It is important to note that driving under the influence of legal drugs, such as marijuana and prescribed medications, is illegal.

According to the Colorado Department of Transportation (DOT), 23,519 drug and alcohol evaluations were collected by the Colorado Department of Human Services in 2012. Nearly 5 percent, or 1,045, of the evaluations collected involved marijuana. Also according to the Colorado DOT, of the 286 drivers tested for drugs in 2012, 35 had only cannabis in their system.

Vice President in Denver to discuss domestic violence

Domestic violence charges can carry potentially serious consequences, as domestic violence is a country-wide concern. Vice President Joe Biden was recently in Denver to discuss the topic of domestic abuse. The discussion was held on the 20th anniversary of the passage of the Violence Against Women Act. Biden spoke as part of a roundtable to community leaders and those impacted by domestic violence. While Department of Justice statistics show that domestic violence is declining overall, Biden noted that there is more left to be done concerning the issue. The White House recently launched a campaign of online pledges to involve men in ending violence against women.

Under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), protective orders are recognized in all jurisdictions including state, tribal and territorial; special domestic violence training for law enforcement is provided for; and funding and creation of special domestic violence units in local communities is also provided for. The VAWA applies to intimate partner violence. Intimate partners include spouses, former spouses, parties that share a child in common or parties that live together or have lived together.

What are the basics of Colorado drunk driving laws?

DUIs are, unfortunately, rather common. They are a serious concern that may cause many people to have questions about the basic DUI laws in Colorado. In Colorado, laws about driving while under the influence include provisions for both alcohol and drugs. The legal limit, or blood alcohol concentration limit, for driving while under the influence of alcohol is 0.08 percent. In addition, failure to pass a roadside sobriety test can result in an arrest for DUI. Those arrested for DUI are usually taken to a local jail.

Penalties for DUI can be serious and unpleasant. For a first DUI offense, the party's driver's license can be revoked for nine months. In addition, the driver can receive a fine ranging from $600 to $1,000, be ordered to attend alcohol education classes and complete up to 96 hours of required community service. Finally, a DUI offender can face up to a year in jail. Additional DUI offenses can carry increased penalties. After multiple DUI offenses, drivers may be required to install ignition interlock devices on their cars. Penalties can also attach for any attempts to start the car after drinking, as the ignition interlock device detects alcohol on the driver's breath.

Colorado man accused of domestic violence faces criminal charges

Understanding criminal charges, the criminal justice system and the rights of accused parties can be important for any party facing criminal charges. A recent alleged domestic violence incident in a neighboring community northwest of Denver ended in assault charges for a 30-year-old man. According to authorities, the victim suffered serious bodily injury and was strangled. She was taken to a hospital in the area. Following the alleged incident, the man was charged with first-degree assault, which is a class three felony.

Domestic violence charges, in some circumstances, can lead to significant consequences and penalties for the accused party. The negative impact of domestic violence charges can extend to a damaged reputation. Jail time is a possible penalty following a domestic violence conviction and domestic violence classes are a possible consequence as well. The ability to obtain housing or educational opportunities, as well as the ability to own a firearm may also all be adversely impacted by domestic violence charges or a conviction for domestic violence.

Colorado man facing weapons charges after discharging weapon

Criminal charges should never be taken lightly and all available options for criminal defense should be considered when facing criminal accusations. According to police in a neighboring Colorado community northwest of Denver, a man recently shot a gun through his neighbor's window. The neighbor was nearly hit as he was passing by the window at the time. The 24-year old man who is accused of firing the weapon allegedly did so while under the influence of a controlled substance.

A warrant was obtained by police and the home was searched where several firearms were allegedly found. The 24-year old man was arrested and charged with possession of a firearm as a previous offender, illegal discharge of a firearm, prohibited use of weapons and another charge. Weapons discharge and weapons possession charges can be serious and present serious consequences for the party facing weapons charges.

Domestic violence by definition and by the numbers

Domestic violence can include several different kinds of abuse. Domestic violence can be a serious concern for victims and those accused of domestic violence crimes. Statistics reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, reveal that one in four women and one in seven men have experienced serious physical violence at the hands of an intimate partner. According to estimates from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, more than 1 million women in the United States fall victim to physical assault at the hands of an intimate partner each year.

It is estimated that 10 percent of women are stalked by a partner at some point during their lifetime. In addition, almost half of all men and women report that their partners show psychological aggression at some point during their lifetime. Domestic violence can, of course, have a devastating impact on families. In 2006, there were 14,123 criminal cases for domestic violence in Colorado. This number represents many families and many individuals accused of domestic violence.

What is a felony charge and why is it serious?

Through both legal and everyday conversations, most individuals are aware that felony charges are serious charges. Some people might wonder what makes felonies so serious and how felony charges might be distinguished from other types of criminal charges. In general, felonies, unlike misdemeanors, are crimes that can be punished by more than one year in prison. Misdemeanors, on the other hand, are punishable by less than one year in jail.

Felonies are defined by the place of incarceration, as well as the length of incarceration; felony sentences are typically served in state prisons, whereas misdemeanor sentences are served in a local jail. Additional penalties, such as fines, also are possible following a felony conviction.

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