Phillip A. Linder
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Dallas Criminal Law Blog

The importance of paying child support during a divorce

Going through a divorce is hard. One day, you're living with your wife and children. The next, you're looking for a new place and paying child support. You can old see your kids on the weekends, and they're living in the house that used to be your home. It can be frustrating, even devastating to go through. However, it's important to remember that the initial arrangements can very well change during the final divorce hearings.

If you want to ensure things are fair, including your child support, you should retain the services of an experienced family law attorney to help you during the divorce.

Marijuana possession charges are serious business in Texas

A half dozen states are enjoying legalized recreational marijuana for adults. Nearly half of the states overall have implemented medical marijuana laws. For some, it may seem like marijuana possession charges are not a very big deal anymore. However, in the state of Texas, marijuana possession charges can drastically alter your life. A significant number of Texas prisoners are there on drug charges, and they often face longer sentences than those accused of assault or other violent crimes. If you have been arrested for or charged with marijuana possession, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney.

The Police May Already Have Your Face On File

Regardless of whether you have ever been arrested or ticketed, it is likely the police already know who you are. Technology advancements in fingerprinting, surveillance, and facial recognition have enabled law enforcement to identify citizens in ways never imagined before. And currently, there are no laws controlling this information. There is a very good chance that even if you are an ordinary citizen, the police may have your face on file in their database.

Justice Reform is a Key Issue This Election Season

Elections are just around the corner and while much of the national news is focused on the presidential candidates, local incumbents in both parties are fighting to keep their jobs. With rising frustration over the lack of progress in Congress and at the state legislature level, there is a bipartisan effort to have an impact on the local level with elections. And a key topic, especially in Texas, is the criminal justice system. With the mishandling of cases, particularly involving drug charges, many people are voting for change.

The Lunacy Of Drug Crime Sentencing

Under mandatory minimum sentencing laws, drug crime convictions can result in penalties as severe as a life sentence without parole. You might think sentences this harsh are imposed only if violence, or the threat thereof, accompanied the offense. You would be wrong. According to former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, in an article published in the New York Times, thousands of people now serve unconscionably long sentences for non-violent drug crimes thanks to the mandatory minimum sentencing rules.

How A Lawyer Can Unmake A Murderer

The recent developments in the Steven Avery case have been making headlines all over the country with the recent overturning of the conviction of Brendan Dassey. If there is one thing to learn from everything they've revealed about the investigation and interrogation that led to the original conviction, it's just how important it is to have a lawyer before any interaction with the police. As discussed in a previous blog post about this case, a lawyer is often the best chance a member of the public has to ensure that they do not accidentally incriminate themselves during an investigation.

How Easily Can Law Enforcement Seize Assets?

You cannot be punished for a crime until you are convicted, and you are innocent until proven guilty. The law is clear. Or is it?

Unfortunately, civil asset forfeiture laws allow law enforcement to easily seize assets believed to be linked to criminal activity. Law enforcement does not need to get a conviction to seize assets. They do not even need to file charges. In other words, you can be punished with the loss of assets simply because law enforcement suspects you committed a crime.

A recent article from the Huffington Post details a case involving law enforcement taking thousands of dollars from a small restaurant without even filing charges, a case that turns out to be one of many of its kind, and a case that should serve as a warning to small businesses and others.

Yes, Bankers Go To Prison For Their Crimes

There is a persistent myth that white collar criminals do not go to prison for their crimes. This myth has frequently been applied to bankers who misused federal funds during the financial crisis or committed other fraud crimes.

However, a recent article in CNN Money points out that 59 bankers have been convicted of fraud related to misuse of Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) funds, 35 of whom were given prison sentences. Another 19 have been charged and are awaiting trial. The TARP inspector general says there is more to come.

Can Police Use Facebook To Investigate You?

We are living in the age of social media. People post and share a wide range of information via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and more. A recent article from WDSU news shows that law enforcement is getting in on the act in a unique way in order to track down alleged criminals and criminal activity.

Making A Murderer: Could It Happen To You?

The popular Netflix documentary series Making a Murderer details the saga of Steven Avery, a Wisconsin man who was wrongfully convicted of rape in the 1980s. In the 2000s, he was exonerated and released from prison after 18 years thanks to new DNA evidence, and then convicted of murder only a few years after his release.

While the errors and events shown in Making a Murderer are extreme, they are indicative of the serious problems that people accused of a crime must be aware of: from police that are more interested in convictions than justice to public defenders who may not truly have their client's best interest at heart.

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