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May 2017 Archives

What Is Restorative Justice and Is It Right For Nashville?

There is a growing consensus among Nashville civic leaders for the city to initiate a restorative justice program. Davidson County District Attorney General Glenn Funk has just come out in favor of such a program, joining Mayor Megan Barry and other officials who have previously expressed support. There is already a pilot program under development in Juvenile Court that is focusing on cases involving certain types of burglaries. But as with other proposed municipal initiatives, finding additional funding for the development and implementation of a full-scale program remains a problem.

What are field sobriety tests?

Often, police officers in Nashville will use field sobriety tests as a precursor to a blood alcohol content (BAC) test, or a breathalyzer test. But just what are field sobriety tests, and what purpose to they hold in the overall process of potentially being arrested for driving while under the influence?

Murfreesboro,Tennessee DUI Alert

Owner/passenger DUI charges are handled differently in Murfreesboro. I recently wrote a post about the owner/passenger DUI charge. It is where the owner of a car allows another person to drive their car. Then the person driving the car is charged with DUI and the owner is charged with DUI. In Rutherford County, it is commonly referred to as DUI by allowance.

Should Nashville Put Body Cameras on Police Officers?

Last week, Davidson County DA Glenn Funk announced his decision to not prosecute Officer Joshua Lippert for the shooting death of Jocques Clemmons. That death in an East Nashville public housing complex in February 2017 once again put the spotlight on alleged bias against African-Americans on the part of the Nashville Police Department.

What is an Obstruction of Justice Charge ?

While listening to NPR coming back from General Sessions Court in Murfreesboro,  the talk wasw hether the President should be charged with an obstruction of justice charge. Under 18 U.S.C. section 1503, the government must prove three elements to obtain a conviction on an obstruction of justice charge.

Tennessee Expungement Law Alert!

Tennessee will soon be lowering their fees for expungements. The Tennessee Legislature passed a bill lowering the fee for an expungement of your criminal record to $180.00. The bill is awaiting Governor Haslam's signature. Tennessee State Representive Raumesh Akbari is to be congradulated for pushing this bill in order to help people restart their lives.

How Accurate Are Field Sobriety Tests?

If you are one of the many people in Tennessee who has been arrested for suspected drunk driving, it will be important for you to know that you do have the right to defend yourself against any charges. There can be several elements of a drunk driving arrest that may provide opportunities for you to do this. One of these may involve the field sobriety tests that are typically administered at the site of your traffic stop before you are officially placed under arrest and charged.

Charged With Shoplifting in Williamson County, Tennessee?

Being charged with theft also referred to as  shoplifting in Williamson County, Tennessee is not to be taken lightly. Both the Franklin,Tennesee Police Department and the Brentwood, Tennessee Police Department prosecute these cases very seriously. Back when I started practicing there was a rumor everyone got 48 hours in jail to help the Cool Springs mall.

State Supreme Court Rulings Change Search Warrant Laws

In a new ruling, The Tennessean reports, the Tennessee Supreme Court has changed the standard law enforcement needs in order to receive a search warrant based on evidence provided by confidential informants. In the past, a confidential informant needed to have both knowledge and be deemed a trustworthy source of information. The new ruling changes a 28-year old decision making the new standard for evidence to be judged worth of a warrant based on the "totality of the circumstances."

Should Your Lawyer Waive Your Preliminary Hearing?

Conducting a preliminary hearing is one of the most fundamental building blocks of building a great defense for your criminal case. Waiving a preliminary hearing means you give up your right to require the state to put on evidence indicating your guilt. Yet, I see lawyers waive their client's right to have a preliminary hearing daily. Waiving a preliminary hearing seems more common in the counties outside of Nashville like Sumner County, Williamson County, and Rutherford County.

Can I Get a DUI If I Let Someone Else Drive My Car ?

DUI law can be very complex. One question I was asked today is "can I get a DUI charge if the car is titled to me and  my son got arrested for DUI while driving my car?" Under Tennessee law, there is no answer on whether the owner of the car must be present in the vehicle. 

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