We are often asked to step in when a public defender has already been appointed to a defendant in a criminal defense case. Although we typically advise prospective clients that a public defender can provide competent, sometimes even excellent, criminal defense services, a defendant can often benefit from the assistance of a private attorney. A private attorney often has more time to devote to a case than a publice defender who may be overwhelmed with a high volume of cases. A private attorney may also have more experience as an attorney, or more experience with a particular type of case than a public defender.
The Arraignment is the defendant's first appearance in court. If the case was initiated by a citation issued from a police officer (like in a criminal speed case, for example), the arraignment date appears at the bottom of the citation. If the case began with a summons and complaint, which may be mailed to or served on the defendant by the Sherriff or a licensed process server, the arraignment date will appear on the summons. If the defendant was arrested and released, the release orders will also list the next court date.
A victimless crime is an activity that the government has decreed criminal even though there is no identifiable victim. A victimless crime is an activity that is performed by one or more consenting people, that causes no harm, injury or violation to anyone outside of the people performing the activity.
John Morales, an actor who once played McGruff the Crime Dog, was recently sentenced to 16 years in federal prison. In 2011, Morales was pulled over while driving in Texas and a drug sniffing dog alerted on the trunk of Morales' car. Police then searched his car and found blueprints for an indoor marijuana growing facility as well as marijuana seeds. Police subsequently searched Morales' home where they found over 1,000 marijuana plants and a rocket launcher, as well as other weapons and thousands of rounds of ammunition.