San Jose Criminal Lawyer
Criminal Defense Information
A felony is a serious criminal offense. It is a classification for a criminal offense which contains the typical punishment of at least one year in state prison, whereas punishment for a misdemeanor (a lesser crime) is less than one year in county jail. Besides a prison sentence, a felony conviction will likely include other additional penalties. These will include the loss of voting rights, the inability to work in certain industries, the inability to obtain professional licenses, and the loss of the privilege of carrying a handgun or firearm. Under California law, a severe and violent felony, such as murder, may also be punishable by the death penalty.
Defending Against Criminal Charges in San Jose
At the Law Offices of Thomas F. Mueller, our criminal attorneys understand the seriousness of criminal charges - no matter if you are facing a misdemeanor or a felony. Whatever the circumstances, we will fight for your rights and make sure we investigate every aspect of the crime you are being charged with committing. A criminal defense attorney, Thomas F. Mueller has almost 40 years of legal experience and is dedicated to helping his clients. With exhaustive efforts and an unwavering devotion to client success, he is able to help with all aspects of criminal law, including:
It is considered to be a criminal offense to attempt to cause bodily injury to someone – even if no injury actually occurred. There are many defenses that can be made against a criminal charge of this nature; for example, that it was done in self-defense.
When the criminal commission of assault occurs while utilizing what is considered a deadly weapon, the criminal charge can be elevated to aggravated assault or assault with a deadly weapon (ADW). This is a "wobbler" and can be tried as either a misdemeanor offense or a felony.
While assault rests on the intentions of the defendant, battery differs in that it rests solely on the injuries that are sustained by the actual victim. Battery is legally defending as physically inflicting bodily injury through intentional actions of physical violence.
There is a heavy social stigma resting on the topic of domestic violence. Unfortunately, however, not every accusation is based in truth. Domestic violence charges can sadly be made out of spite, jealousy or even in the attempts to gain the upper hand in a family law case.
Criminal charges relating to drugs are a large focus on the actions taken by police officers. If they suspect that you have been dealing with a controlled substance of any kind, you could find yourself facing stiff penalties. These cases, however, are defensible.
To be successfully convicted of drug possession, it must be proven that you had knowing constructive or joint possession of an illicit or controlled substance – this means that it was either on your person, in a place that you undoubtedly control or even with someone with whom you possessed it with.
It is a criminal per se offense to be operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content over the legal limit. If it was determined that you had a BAC over 0.08%, you could be facing criminal penalties that include driver's license suspension, mandatory installation of the ignition interlock device and other.
When dealing with a DUI-related charge, it is important that one remembers that there are two separate cases that will be kicked into action as soon as an arrest is made. There is the criminal case and there is the DMV case, which will deal solely with the future of your driving privileges – not the question of your guilt.
While DUI charges are often misdemeanors, it does not mean that every DUI-related charge is tried as a felony. In some cases, depending on the extenuating circumstances, a DUI could be elevated to a felony – for example, should an injury have been sustained in a car accident caused by the drunk driving.
The state of California has enforced what is known as a Zero Tolerance Law – meaning that any driver that is under the legal drinking age of 21 is not to have any discernible amount of alcohol in their system. The legal limit for an underage driver is 0.01% - meaning that even a spoonful of cough syrup could push them over the limit.
Not all crimes are tried on a state level. In some cases, should the crime cross state borders or even if it affects the country on a whole, it can fall under the jurisdiction of the federal government. This includes such crimes as drug trafficking, kidnapping and money laundering.
Has your child been criminally charged with a crime? If so, then you are likely well aware of the stress associated with criminal charges of this nature. While juvenile courts are more likely to favor rehabilitation over punishment, there are some cases where a prosecutor will attempt to get your child tried as an adult.
Having to have a criminal record is difficult – to say the least. You, however, are not without hope. There are some situations where you will be able to get your record cleared through such actions as expungement. This can help you move forward into a cleaner future.
Sex-related crimes are viewed as some of the most heinous ones possible. If you have been criminally charged with something of this nature, you do not have the luxury of wasting time. Due to Megan's Law, all of those who are successfully convicted of a sex crime are required to register – and all of this information is made publically available online. This is not the kind of consequence that you can take lightly.
It is a criminal offense to have sexual intercourse with an unconsenting adult. This is known as rape and can have many different variations, depending on the circumstances of the arrest. No matter whether you have been criminally charged with date rape, statutory rape, spousal rape or other, you need to be confident that you are doing everything possible to protect your legal rights.
Criminal charges of prostitution often arise out of "sting operations" in which the police were impersonating a potential client. These, however, can often become entrapment – which can leave the case up in the air on the validity of the arrest.
Criminal offenses involving theft can have serious consequences. If you have been criminally charged – no matter whether it involved burglary or shoplifting, it is in your best interests it get the involvement of an experienced criminal lawyer that you trust to help defend your legal rights.
Three Strikes Crime
In the state of California, the rules of baseball also apply to the criminal justice system. The three strikes system is simple; if you are convicted of three felonies, you're out. This, however, is not always a completely fair process and in some cases can slap the convicted with grossly unfair penalties.
Not every traffic violation – and just because you've received a ticket does not mean that you should just pay the fine and get over it. Paying a fine is the same as admitting guilt. If you were not guilty, you should not be forced to deal with the consequences. Get the involvement of an attorney from our firm and we will fight to help protect your legal rights.
Hit & Run
It is considered to be a criminal offense to be in a car accident, but fail to stop and exchange information with any involved drivers or owners of any property that was damaged. Unfortunately, not every person who was criminally charged with a hit and run is actually guilty. For example, what if you weren't the person who was driving the car?
White Collar Crime
If a crime involves finance and does not incorporate the element of business, it is likely that it falls under the umbrella category of white collar crimes. These, for example, include criminal actions such as fraud.