As of July 30, 2019, hemp became legal in the State of Ohio. The difference between marijuana and hemp could be an important legal defense in drug trafficking and drug possession cases.
When most Americans hear the phrase "double jeopardy" it usually brings to mind one of two scenarios: 1) a chance for a contestant to score big on the TV gameshow "Jeopardy!", or 2) the idea that you cannot be tried twice for the same crime. While recently the former has been getting a lot of attention in the news, the United States Supreme Court had an opportunity to provide very important insight into the latter.
If you are being questioned by the police and want a lawyer, you need to make a clear statement indicating you want a lawyer before your right to counsel is triggered.
Laws and regulations can be passed at the city, county, state and federal levels. Laws tend to pile up in the dark and dusty corners of government. We rarely go back and clean out these old laws by officially repealing them. As a result, there are some truly strange laws that stayed on the books long past the point where they were useful. Here is just a sliver of the odd laws that apparently made sense to officials at the time.
Butler County Judge Charles Pater has refused to preside over future cases involving sex crimes. His recusal is due to a written admission issued two months ago stating he may have been biased in sentencing a defendant based upon Judge Pater's own personal experience with a family member who was a victim of a sex crime.
Those with a history of low-level drug and theft charges that were previously prevented from having their cases expunged will be happy to know that the law has changed. Starting this year, the Ohio legislature has expanded the number and type of cases that can be expunged. This will benefit those who have long been haunted by past mistakes on background checks.
The Reinstatement Fee Amnesty Initiative
On January 31, 2019, more than one third of the 1.1 million Ohioans with suspended driver's licenses will have an opportunity to petition the BMV to reduce their reinstatement fees or waive them entirely. This opportunity falls under a new six month program called the Reinstatement Fee Amnesty Initiative.
We recently represented a hard-working single father with no criminal record who is thirty-seven years old. His girlfriend told him that she would accuse him of domestic violence if he ended the relationship. When he ended the relationship, she followed through with her threat and called 911. She told the arresting officer he hit her a few times in the back of the head and pulled her hair. Our client denied harming her or any woman. Even though the officer noted in the complaint that he did not observe any injuries, he felt as though he had probable cause to charge and arrest our client and charge him with first degree misdemeanor domestic violence based solely upon the ex-girlfriend's statements.
For the second time this year, Ohio has expanded its Intervention in Lieu of Conviction ("ILC") statute, once again benefitting defendants across the State. Effective on October 29, 2018, the new ILC statute gives a person countless opportunities to enroll in ILC. In other words, even if a person has previously been given an opportunity for ILC, the court now has the discretion to permit a defendant to enroll into the program again.
It's Sunday morning. You just woke up to a piercing headache, a mysterious stain on your favorite shirt, and wait, what's that paper in your pocket? You pull out a crumpled up rectangular sheet of blue paper. The words "ordered to appear" and "prohibited acts" jump off the paper. Your heart begins to race as it all comes rushing back to you. Take a deep breath. We have seen it all and we can help.