DESPITE REDUCTION OF FELONY TO MISDEMEANOR FELONY ENHANCEMENT UPHELD

Cesar Julio Salazar-Mojica was convicted of a felony assault with a deadly weapon in California in 1980. He was placed on probation. The probation was revoked in 1982 and he was sent to prison. When he was released from prison he was deported to Mexico. On June 5, 2008he was arrested near the border and charged with returning to the United States after being deported in violation of 8 U.S.C. § 1326. While awaiting trial on the Federal charge, Salazar-Mojica […] Read more »

LINDSAY LOHAN: BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE

Lindsay Lohan is in a difficult position. She is facing both a hearing on whether she violated her probation and a felony trial for grand theft. She is on misdemeanor probation for a third DUI. She could get up to a year on the probation violation since it is a third DUI with credit for the time she has done on prior violations and she could get up to three years in prison for the felony. More likely she will […] Read more »

SUPREME COURT REVERSES NINTH CIRCUIT AND FINDS PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS UNTIMELY

A Federal Court will not review a state denial of a writ of habeas corpus if the state ruling is based upon an independent state ground that is independent of the federal question and adequate to support the judgment.To be considered an adequate state ground the rule must be “firmly established and regularly followed.” Walker, Warden et al v. Martin decided yesterday by the Supreme Court builds upon Beard v. Kindler, decided last year. The Supreme Court held in Beard […] Read more »

POLICE OFFICER ARRESTED FOR SEX WITH JUVENILE VICTIM

Walnut Creek, California authorities announced that former police officer, Shawn Wallace was arrested on suspicion of unlawful sexual intercourse with an underage woman and dissuading a witness. He has been released from custody and he has not been charged with any crimes. While on duty he investigated the sexual assault of a seventeen year old girl. The victim ended up moving into Wallace’s house and, according to his lawyer, Michael Rains, they had a sexual relationship. If this is true, […] Read more »

FORMER JUDGE CIAVARELLA CONVICTED

Former Luzerne County Pennsylvania Common Pleas Court Judge Mark A. Ciavarella Jr. was found guilty of racketeering, racketeering conspiracy, honest services mail fraud, money laundering conspiracy and a host of tax fraud charges in what has become known as the“Kids for Cash Scandal.” As a juvenile court judge, it was alleged that Ciavarella received money from a for profit company in exchange for sending children to the company’s private jail. Many of the children were sent to the facility for […] Read more »

76 MONTHS FOR FAILURE TO REGISTER AS A SEX OFFENDER

Federal sentencing is a complicated area of law. The Guidelines which are voluntary but must be considered consist of a numerical evaluation of the person’s criminal history and of the crime. In United States v. Conca the Second Circuit Court of Appeals faced a few of the problems found in determining criminal history. Marc Conca plead guilty to failure to register as a sex offender when traveling from one state to another state. He traveled from Texas to Oklahoma to […] Read more »

OGLALA SIOUX DRUG CONVICTIONS UPHELD

Colin Spotted Elk and Flint Thomas Red Feather, along with fourteen others,were convicted of participating in a conspiracy to sell drugs on the Pine Ridge Oglala Sioux reservation in South Dakota. Spotted Elk was originally convicted on a number of charges including using a firearm in a drug trafficking crime. While his appeal was pending the Supreme Court held that the statute did not apply to people such as Spotted Elk who traded drugs for guns. The case was remanded […] Read more »

RAE CARRUTH’S WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS DENIED

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals denied Rae Carruth’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus following the conviction of the former Carolina Panther football star for conspiracy to commit the murder of his pregnant girlfriend, use of an instrument to destroy their unborn child, and discharge of a firearm into occupied property. Carruth went to a movie with Cherica Adams, who was eight months pregnant with their son. After the movie they went to his house to pick up […] Read more »

KNOWLEDGE OF THE AGE OF MINOR NECESSARY FOR CONVICTION OF RECEIVING CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

Daniel Szymanski pled guilty in the United States District Court to receiving child pornography. At the time of the plea the judge was hesitant to take the plea because it required a five year minimum sentence and possession of child pornography had no minimum sentence. What the judge, the defense attorney, the defendant and at the time of the plea the United States attorney did not realize is that unlike possession of child pornography, receiving child pornography require knowledge at […] Read more »

SIXTH CIRCUIT APPROVES SEARCH WARRANT

Friday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeal upheld the conviction Reginald Ellison, Sr. on various drug charges. The only question on appeal was the sufficiency of the nexus between the residence that was the subject of a search warrant and crime. Neither a search warrant or the affidavit supporting a search warrant must name an individual suspected of committing a crime. The warrant need only name a place to be searched. The affidavit must show probable cause that evidence of […] Read more »