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Criminal Defense Blog

Michigan family accused of distributing heroin, fentanyl

According to the Grand Traverse County Prosecutor, a mother and her daughter and son are all facing multiple charges relating to allegedly distributing large amounts of heroin and fentanyl to users in the northwestern part of the state. The 45-year-old mother and her 19-year-old daughter were charged with multiple felonies for reportedly picking up drugs from their downstate sources and then selling them across the northwestern region. The woman's son was separately charged in his hotel room for possession of cocaine and a firearm.

According to law enforcement officers, the family's name kept coming up in other drug investigations. Multiple informants detailed how they purchased drugs from the family members. The woman and her daughter were arrested and charged after the police said they found almost an ounce of heroin and $800 in a hotel room.

Former football staffer offered plea in drunk driving case

One former football staffer at the University of Michigan has been offered a plea agreement after the man was charged with drunk driving and resisting police. The man was taken into custody on March 5 in downtown Ann Arbor when he allegedly had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.17, significantly above the legal limit of 0.08. The man, who is the former director of football operations and director of performance for the Michigan football team, was accused of an array of related charges.

The man resigned from his university positions nine days after the incident. He was accused not only of OWI/DUI but also two counts of assault, three counts of attempted assault or resisting police, failure to stop after a property damage accident and disorderly conduct. He allegedly attempted to bite a lab technician at the time of his arrest, and police say he was found disoriented by the road after hitting and object and driving away from the scene.

Questioning breathalyzer test accuracy

When an alleged drunk motorist in Michigan is pulled over, authorities generally use a breathalyzer test to establish the driver's blood alcohol concentration (BAC). There is a presumption that a driver is drunk if their BAC is .08 percent or greater. While blood tests are more precise than breath tests, they are invasive and take a significant amount of time to produce results.

Therefore, most OWI/DUI charges are based on breathalyzer tests, which the suspect must blow into. While breathalyzers present reliable evidence of a driver's blood alcohol level, they can be challenged. In general, courts accept breathalyzer results, but the police must show that the device is reliable. Many people accused of drunk driving have successfully questioned the reliability or accuracy of breath test results in court.

Task Force arrests two men on drug chargres

Two men were taken into custody on March 21 on multiple drug charges at a Michigan residence. The arrest of one man, age 21, stemmed from a prior warrant while the second man, age 22, was arraigned after additional evidence was found at the scene.

According to the Goegebic Iron Area Narcotics Team, Task Force members were dispatched to a residence on a warrant for the charges of possession with intent to deliver marijuana, possession of marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school and maintaining a drug house. All three charges were felonies that could carry several years in prison.

Are clumsy people more at risk for OWI arrests?

Perhaps you recall times of your youth when you felt like you could barely walk down a sidewalk without tripping over your own two feet. If you're a parent now, you may have already witnessed your own children clumsily navigating the journey of puberty, when it seems like bodies grow a mile per minute and sometimes feet are ahead of the game, making young adults feel awkward in posture and gait.  

If you are one of many people in Michigan who never quite overcame their clumsy state in life, you may be surprised to learn how not having good balance or agility can land you in a heap of legal trouble. Police officers use field sobriety tests to determine probable cause for OWI arrests. Your clumsiness may lead an officer to suspect you of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. It's critical to know your rights as well as where to turn for immediate support when needed. 

Don't let a charge for possessing drugs drag you down

Facing a charge of drug possession can understandably be terrifying. You may worry about how having a drug possession conviction on your criminal record will impact your ability to apply for jobs in the future. Of course, you might also worry about how being accused of a drug crime will affect your reputation in the community.

Fortunately, just because you face accusations of possessing drugs does not mean you are immediately guilty in the eyes of the law. Instead, the government must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law before you can face a conviction. For this reason, it may be in your best interests to seek legal counsel as soon as possible.

Former college professor sentenced on drug and gun charges

A Michigan college professor who was convicted of drug and gun crimes will be spending a few years in jail. On March 5, a judge sentenced the 49-year-old man to a total of three to six years in prison for three separate charges. After serving his sentences, the Canadian native will then be deported. His lawyer says that the sentence is too harsh.

The Oakland University professor was convicted in January on charges of drug possession, running a drug house and possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony. The gun conviction got him a mandatory two years in prison, and he was sentenced to one year for each of the drug charges.

Michigan State Police release drunk driving crackdown numbers

The Wolverine State has some of the nation's toughest drunk driving laws. Nearly 500 motorists who were arrested in a drunk driving crackdown late last year have been confronted face to face with Michigan's OWI/DWI laws.

The crackdown was called "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" and it was carried out from Nov. 22 (the day before Thanksgiving) to Dec. 10. Of the 482 motorists who were arrested during the event, 71 were charged under the state's high blood alcohol content law, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety said.

Fighting back against federal charges related to fraud

Criminal charges of any kind are serious, but they can be particularly complex if a person is facing accusations of violating federal laws. Michigan readers know that federal financial crimes can bring a host of life altering penalties if convicted. If you are facing charges of fraud or other types of financial misconduct, a strong defense is important for your future.

Fraud involves behaviors that typically relate to the deception or deceit of another person for the purpose of financial gain. This can include various different behaviors, but these charges are quite serious. It is possible to effectively confront these charges, but you would benefit from the support of a legal ally with extensive criminal defense experience and knowledge of federal fraud laws.

There are defenses to every crime, including 2nd degree murder

The criminal justice system in the United States considers people who have been arrested innocent until they are proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. Even so, the perception of guilt based on the initial arrest or charges is difficult to overcome. But know this; if you stand accused of a crime, you retain the absolute right to defend yourself.

This includes charges of second-degree murder. Here in Michigan, anyone charged with this crime faces allegations of killing another person without regard for human life. Ordinarily, this classification of murder occurs in the heat of the moment. Simply being charged does not guarantee a conviction. Below are some of the most common defenses to this particular crime.

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