Archives : 2011 : August
In California, you could be charged with a misdemeanor DUI under Vehicle Code Section 23152 or a DUI felony under Vehicle Code Section 23153 if you are driving under the influence and cause an accident and injure another person. For more serious crimes involving the death of another person while driving a vehicle under the influence, you should be charged with vehicular manslaughter under Vehicle Code Sections 191.5 and 192. California has very complex DUI penalties and takes DUI crimes quite seriously. Penalties are enhanced for prior driving convictions, when a minor child under 14 years of age is in the car at the time of the violation, when speeding occurs, when your BAC is over .08% or you refuse to take the chemical test.
For a first offense DUI with a BAC over .08%, your driver’s license may be suspended for four months at the time of your arrest or up to one year if you refuse to take a chemical test. If you are under 21 years of age with a BAC of .01% or more, your license will be suspended automatically for one year. For a second offense DUI conviction, you could receive a one year suspension of your license and a two year suspension if you receive to take a chemical test. You could face jail sentences from 96 hours to three years and fines up to $1,600, and also be required to complete a driving under the influence program, and have to pay for the installation of an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in your vehicle, as well as being required to obtain SR22 (California Proof of Insurance Certificate) car insurance. A conviction of three or more DUI’s within 10 years and a BAC of .08% or more is considered a felony crime.
Actress Lindsay Lohan’s ex-lover, Samantha Ronson, was arrested for a DUI on Monday August 1, 2011, around 10:30 a.m. in Baker, California. Police officers stopped her for speeding because she was driving 19 miles over the posted speed limit of 70 miles per hour. Police suspected after she was pulled over that she was under the influence. She was given a balance test which revealed indications of intoxication. Police arrested Ronson after she refused a breathalyzer test. It has been reported that at the police station she tested over the legal limit. Ronson did admit she had been drinking alcohol earlier, and claimed that she had been drinking late the previous evening and that she was on her way home from Las Vegas. She was released on Monday. Lohan has also been in the news the past couple year’s over her drug, alcohol and shoplifting cases.
If you are arrested in California for DUI, you should hire a California criminal defense attorney immediately. The attorney can investigate the police report to make sure the police had cause to stop you, and determine whether they have sufficient evidence to charge you. The attorney can argue that the search and seizure was illegal and try and get the case dismissed. Also, if the police failed to properly give you your Miranda rights, the attorney may be able to argue that your constitutional rights were violated and get the charges dropped. Another defense that the attorney may assert is that you were speeding. A skilled California criminal defense attorney may be able to get you probation or get you into a drug and alcohol counseling and treatment program in lieu of jail time.
Under Article 245.01 of the New York Penal Code, a person can be found guilty of the crime of indecent exposure if they appear in a public place and expose private or intimate body parts, including genitals, pubic area, buttocks or a women’s breast below the top of the areola, even if there is no violence or touching. Indecent exposure in New York is considered a misdemeanor sex crime. However, if there is any contact between the offender and another person, it could be considered sexual assault, which is a felony crime. If a minor is involved as a victim of indecent exposure, the punishment is harsher. Penal Code Section 130 defines sexual contact as “any touching of the sexual or other intimate parts of a person not married to the actor for the purpose of gratifying sexual desire of either party. It includes the touching of the actor by the victim, as well as the touching of the victim by the actor, whether directly or through clothing.”
Breastfeeding and performing nude in a play, theatre or entertainment venue are excluded under the law. Nudity in strip clubs in New York is not allowed where alcohol is served. Many strip clubs have “juice bars”, which permits their nude employees to be anywhere in the club. Each municipality is allowed to pass their own nudity laws regarding entertainment and the restriction of strip clubs. It is also illegal to display offensive sexual material in a public place under Penal Code Sections 245.10 and 245.11.
For a Class A misdemeanor sex crime, you may be subject to a fine not to exceed $1,000 and/or jail time. If you are a repeat or habitual offender, your sentence will be increased. Punishments for repeat offenders and felony sexual assault convictions include jail time; fines, mandatory rehab, and you may be required to register as a sex offender on the National Sex Offenders Registry.
Three people were arrested on Monday August 1, 2011, after taking off their clothes in front of the New York Stock Exchange during an art performance project involving dozens of people. The three were taken to the 1st Precinct stationhouse in Tribeca and released with a summons. The performance was organized by artist Zefrey Throwell, who gathered 50 people as part of an art event entitled “Ocularpation”, where participants pretended to be traders, janitors and secretaries. Zefrey’s inspiration for the performance was his 65 year old mother who lost most of her retirement savings during the Wall Street crash and has now been forced to return to work. Zefrey defended his project as an educational project about transparency that he believes Wall Street needs.
Although an arrest for indecent exposure or public indecency is considered a lesser sex crime in New York, it still should be taken seriously. It is important to hire an experienced New York criminal defense attorney to represent you. The attorney can argue that you were falsely accused or possibly that your first amendment rights to freedom of speech were violated to get the case dismissed. If you have been convicted of previous sex crimes, the attorney may be able to arrange a plea bargain, get you reduced fines and possible avoidance of having to register as a sex offender.
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