HG.org Legal Resources

Criminal Law Articles

Articles written by lawyers and expert witnesses worldwide
explaining the different aspects of Criminal Law.


What the Confrontation Clause Means Today

  By HG.org
The Confrontation Clause of the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution gives a defendant the right to confront his or her accuser....

License Suspended and Acquiring a License from Another State

  By HG.org
Many traffic violations may cause the suspension of a driver’s license. When multiple crimes have been accumulated, when some violations have...

What is a Nolo Contendere Plea?

  By HG.org
A nolo contendere plea is offered in some states as an alternative to pleading straight guilty or not guilty. This plea can sometimes lead to...

Reliability of Polygraph Tests

  By HG.org
Polygraph or lie detector tests attempt to discern if someone is being dishonest. Every test is different, offering different features and being...

Consequences of Probation Violation

  By HG.org
Many criminal defendants receive probation as part of their criminal sentence. During this time, they must be on their best behavior or suffer...

Evidentiary Privileges in Criminal Cases

  By HG.org
Evidentiary privileges concern confidential communications, such as those between spouses or between a lawyer and his or her client. The United...

Duty to Disclose

  By HG.org
A prosecutor has the duty to disclose certain information to the defense. This helps aid the defendant in being able to lodge a proper defense.

Constitutional Rights and Carrying a Dirk or Dagger

  By HG.org
When most people think of the right to bear arms, they think about guns. However, there are other weapons that may be used for self-defense,...

Enhanced Criminal Penalties for Weapons Charges

  By HG.org
Many criminal defendants receive an additional charge pertaining to a weapon in connection with another crime, such as burglary or assault. If a...

Crime of Shoplifting

  By HG.org
Shoplifting occurs when someone goes into a store and takes something that does not belong to him or her. Many businesses have to carefully...

The History of Police Brutality, and What it Means for You

Police brutality in the United States has always been a huge problem, though it is more visible now that widespread ownership of handheld...

When Is It Self-Defense and When Is It Manslaughter?

  By HG.org
Manslaughter, self-defense and murder are often closely tied together. It can be difficult to determine when self defense changes things so that...

New Guidelines Regarding Drug Offenses Established by Sentencing Commission

  By HG.org
When a person is facing federal charges, he or she must be concerned with the federal sentencing guidelines. In the event that he or she is...

Prevent Identity Theft

  By HG.org
Today, there are higher risks of being victimized of identity theft than ever before. This is due to the easy access that many culprits have due...

Why Choosing an Arson Criminal Defense Lawyer Is So Important

  By HG.org
Arson is a serious criminal offense. As such, it can have serious implications. It is vital to involve a qualified criminal defense lawyer in...

Pawning Stolen Property

  By HG.org
Sometimes a person may happen upon stolen property. There may be many innocent reasons for why he or she is in possession of such property....

Stand Your Ground Laws Explained

  By HG.org
One of the most notorious stand your ground cases involved George Zimmerman. The Florida case made national news, not the least of which...

How to Avoid a Traffic Stop

  By HG.org
Many DUI and drug-related arrests start as a simple traffic stop until law enforcement observes signs of impairment or other criminal activity....

Texting While Driving

  By HG.org
As the number of people texting has steadily increased, so have the number of cases involving motor vehicle accidents caused by texting while...

Defenses after Being Stopped in a Speed Trap

  By HG.org
Many individuals are stopped for speeding in certain areas known for speeding. Often, law enforcement establishes a speed trap in these...

No Duty to Retreat in Self Defense Cases

  By HG.org
In self-defense cases, there are generally two different approaches that states take. The first is the duty to retreat. The second is stand your...

All About the Attorney Client Privilege

  By HG.org
There are a number of privileges that criminal defendants have that protect certain communications. These privileges include clergy privilege,...

Application and Limitations of the Clergy Privilege

  By HG.org
Many states enact a number of privileges in order to protect criminal defendants. These privileges help prevent certain people from testifying...

How Long Will an Expungement Take in New Jersey?

Your criminal record does not have to impact your life forever. Depending on your circumstances, such as the number of years since your...

Police Interrogation and Confessions

  By HG.org
When someone is suspected of committing a crime, one of the most effective ways to convict the individual is to present a confession from him or...

Criminal Appeal Based on Unfair Trial

  By HG.org
In the United States, all criminal defendants have the right to receive a fair trial. There are numerous constitutional safeguards in place to...

When Is a Person Legally Insane?

  By HG.org
The insanity defense is one of th emost controversial defenses. Additionally, it has one of the lowest success rates among all criminal...

Five Acts Better Left for Professionals in Criminal Defense Cases

  By HG.org
While your life, liberty and reputation may be on the line in a criminal case, there are certain aspects of your criminal defense that may be...

Steps to Take Before Being Sentenced

  By HG.org
After a person has been found guilty either by pleading guilty, accepting a plea agreement or being found guilty by a judge or jury, the next...

Police Confessionals

  By HG.org
One of the most common pieces of advice that a lawyer gives to his or her client is not to say anything. This is especially true when dealing...

Static-99 Reports Explained

  By HG.org
In criminal cases, it is common for there to be a number of confusing terms, such as arraignment, indictment, information, constitutional rights...

Rules Regarding Evidence Spoliation

  By HG.org
At civil trials, both parties may present evidence and testimony to prove their side of the story. In many cases, the most effective way to...

Criminal Cases and Marital Exceptions

  By HG.org
One of the biggest public policies in the United States is protecting the sanctity of marriage. Marriage is considered by many to be a sacred...

Right to a Speedy Trial

  By HG.org
Every US citizen has the right to a speedy trial as provided by the United States Constitution. Many state constitutions also contain similar...

Can a Spouse Testify Against His or Her Spouse?

  By HG.org
When one or both spouses are in legal trouble, the question of privileges and testimonial exceptions may arise. This is an important concept as...

Prevent Loss of Driving Privileges with the Help of a Lawyer

  By HG.org
Many individuals may find their driver’s license revoked, suspended or made useless along with driving privileges removed for various reasons....

Criminal Defense Strategies

  By HG.org
When a person is facing criminal charges, there are high stakes. His or her liberty may be at stake, along with his or her standing in the...

Travel Restrictions While on Probation

  By HG.org
When individuals are convicted of crimes, they often face a number of punishments. One such punishment that is often imposed is probation. It is...

Plea Bargaining Basics

  By HG.org
A criminal defense lawyer may be able to negotiate an agreement between a criminal defendant and a prosecutor. This agreement is referred to as...

Constitutional Rights of Criminal Defendants

  By HG.org
Individuals who are facing criminal charges have a number of key rights that must be honored throughout the process. By being aware of this...

Pleading Not Guilty Even When Guilty

  By HG.org
Many individuals have heard the phrase “innocent until proven guilty.” This means that all criminal defendants are presumed to be innocent. The...

Steps to Take If You Cannot Afford to Make Bail in Your Case

  By HG.org
The Eighth Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits the issuance of excessive bail. However, courts have found that excessive bail...

Common Questions about Plea Bargains

  By HG.org
Rather than trying every criminal case, the prosecutor and criminal defense lawyer may resolve a case by agreeing to a plea agreement. Many...

Analyzing False Confessions and Exonerations

  By HG.org
Given the significant number of exonerations that have been issued in recent years, it is important to consider what events led to these...

How Bail Is Set

  By HG.org
In many cases, a criminal defendant can leave police custody by posting bail. The amount that bail is ordered at is different in each case...

Criminal Defense for Vehicular Manslaughter Charges

  By HG.org
One of the most egregious criminal charges a person may face involving a vehicle is the traffic violation of vehicular manslaughter. This crime...

Impounded Vehicles Explained

  By HG.org
A vehicle is impounded often when tickets issued by law enforcement officers go unpaid or other crimes such as driving under the influence of...

History of Plea Bargains

  By HG.org
A plea bargain is a negotiated agreement for a criminal defendant whereby he or she agrees to plead guilty in exchange for a more favorable...

Stages of Criminal Defense

  By HG.org
The American criminal justice system is one of the most complex, making it difficult for many criminal defendants to navigate this system alone.

Reasons to Expunge a Criminal Record

  By HG.org
When a person has been convicted of a crime, he or she usually acquires a criminal record which can be accessed by landlords, potential...

Need for Experienced Lawyer in Drug Trafficking Case

  By HG.org
Drug trafficking charges are extremely serious with the potential to carry some of the stiffest penalties in the country. For this reason, it is...

Facing Assault and Battery Charges? What You Need to Know

  By HG.org
Assault and battery charges are very serious in nature. Being convicted of a crime of this nature corresponds with potentially life-altering...

Explanation of Violent Crimes

  By HG.org
Individuals who have been charged with a violent crime may wish to seek immediate legal counsel in order to help combat the potential...

Domestic Battery Laws

  By HG.org
Domestic violence instances continue to run rampant throughout the country. Learning about the laws related to domestic battery and the...

How Assault and Aggravated Assault Differ

  By HG.org
Assault charges and aggravated assault charges differ in a number of important ways. An assault charge may be elevated to an aggravated assault...

Is Domestic Violence a Felony or Misdemeanor?

  By HG.org
Domestic violence is taken seriously in jurisdictions throughout the country. In some areas, domestic violence is considered a felony. In...

Repercussions of Domestic Violence Accusations

  By HG.org
When domestic violence ensues, the person that perpetrates the acts and is convicted may find himself or herself on the receiving end of many...

Right to Confront Accuser in Sex Abuse Cases

  By HG.org
Individuals accused of crimes of sexual abuse often face serious consequences when the allegations become public. Various areas of their lives...

Choking as a Felony

  By HG.org
Many states are taking proactive steps to make choking a more serious offense by elevating it to a felony charge. Choking is a criminal act that...

An Overview of Domestic Violence

  By HG.org
Domestic violence is an act that has been difficult to categorize legally in some states, but it has been increasing in occurrence throughout...

Constitutional Right to a Fair Trial

  By HG.org
When a person is accused of a crime, the consequences at stake are significant. A conviction can mean the loss of freedom with years behind...

Constitutional Right to Legal Counsel

  By HG.org
Any citizen in the United States who is facing criminal charges is guaranteed the right to legal counsel. If he or she cannot afford his or her...

Federal Criminal Appeals Process

  By HG.org
If a defendant is convicted of a crime in a trial court, he or she has the right to appeal this decision to the appellate court. In order to...

Combating Felony Charges

  By HG.org
Criminal offenses are typically classified into categories: misdemeanors or felonies. Felony charges are considered more serious than...

Discovery in Criminal Cases

  By HG.org
The discovery process involves the parties sharing information about the case so that a proper counter-argument can be presented. In a civil...

Self Defense Laws

  By HG.org
Many individuals believe that they have the legal right to protect themselves. However, there are times when self-defense laws do not apply. If...

Common Defenses in Criminal Cases

  By HG.org
When a person is facing serious criminal charges, he or she needs to develop a strong defense. A criminal defense lawyer can advise a defendant...

Potential Defenses to Crimes

  By HG.org
In order to avoid a conviction, it is necessary to build a defensive strategy in a criminal case. This strategy is based on the particular...

What Are My Rights If Stopped on the Street?

  By HG.org
It is not uncommon for a person to happen upon a law enforcement officer. He or she may be stopped by the law enforcement officer and asked...

Resisting Arrest without the Presence of Violence

  By HG.org
When someone imagines someone else resisting arrest, they often have a mental image of a person violently thrashing around and physically...

Dangers of Stop and Frisk

  By HG.org
The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution protects Americans from unreasonable searches and seizures. Despite this important...

Laws Regarding Stop and Frisk

  By HG.org
The term “stop and frisk” refers to a law enforcement officer’s limited right to detain a person momentarily and inspect him or her for weapons....

Pedestrian Stop Laws

  By HG.org
While many people are aware of the frequency of being pulled over by law enforcement when driving, fewer individuals may be aware of law...

Fighting Restraining Order Petitions

  By HG.org
Restraining orders are an important tool for victims of domestic violence. They limit the interactions that the victim is subjected to when...

Evidence Necessary for a Protective Order Involving Family Violence

  By HG.org
When attempting to get a protective order when family violence is involved, victims are often confronting a complex issue. However, it is...

Abuse Inflicted on Elderly Women

  By HG.org
Although abuse may be inflicted on anyone, young or old, male or female, there is a disproportionate number of incidences involving elderly...

Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act

  By HG.org
The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act is an extension of the Violence Against Women Act, which was passed in 1994. This important law...

No Contact Orders in Family Law

  By HG.org
In some family law cases, a no contact order may be issued. This order prohibits the defendant from having any contact with the alleged victim....

Retrieving Personal Property when No Contact Order Is in Place

  By HG.org
A no contact order is a civil order that instructs a person not to have contact with another person, often because the other person has alleged...

Criminal Charges vs. Civil Complaints

  By HG.org
Criminal law and civil law are two different types of law that vary based on their purpose, potential punishments and the process in which cases...

Battery: Civil and Criminal Consequences

  By HG.org
When a person is the aggressor in a battery case, he or she may be subject to criminal charges. He or she may also be subject to a civil...

Domestic Violence against Men

  By HG.org
When people think of domestic violence, they often visualize the image of a distressed woman who has been mistreated by her boyfriend or...

Are Pennsylvania Judges and Court Administrators Required to Provide Interpreters?

The number of United States residents who are deemed to be Limited English Proficient (LEP) has substantially increased in the recent decades. A...

False Allegations Regarding Domestic Violence

  By HG.org
Domestic violence affects every socioeconomic level, culture and race in the United States. Due to the prevalence of domestic violence in the...

When Protection Orders Are Misused

  By HG.org
Victims of domestic violence can secure a protection order so that the alleged abuser cannot be around them. This is a court order that...

What You Should Know About Domestic Violence

  By HG.org
Domestic violence is a serious problem in the United States. It often affects every segment of society. Whether you are a victim of domestic...

When You Need a Protective Order

  By HG.org
Every year, victims of domestic violence are seriously injured and some are even killed. Victims of domestic violence can take a step toward...

Can the Indiana Violent Crime Victim Compensation Fund Help You or Your Clients?

What is the Victim Compensation Fund and can it help you or your clients? Many people have no idea the Victim’s Compensation Fund exists, nor do...

Assault and Battery in Personal Injury Claims

  By HG.org
Along with the criminal charge of assault and battery, the person affected may have a personal injury claim. It is important to know which...

Domestic Violence Process Explained

  By HG.org
Domestic violence is a serious violent crime with aggressive behavior from one person often injuring another. Bodily harm to various degrees is...

DUI and Child Endangerment

  By HG.org
When a child’s safety, health or wellbeing is in danger of being compromised while, a person causing this danger may be prosecuted for child...

DUI Penalties are Greater with Child Involvement

  By HG.org
When a person is convicted of multiple drunk driving offenses, they are typically subject to greater penalties. When a child under sixteen is...

DUI and Traffic Events Regarding Commercial Driver’s License Laws

  By HG.org
When a commercial driver is convicted of a DUI, he or she may face a one year disqualification from driving a commercial vehicle per the Federal...

Violation of Probation

Probation In Colorado In the state of Colorado, after a defendant pleads guilty or is found guilty of an offense, they are often placed on...

Immigration Consequences of a Domestic Violence Conviction

  By HG.org
Individuals who are not United States citizens risk being removed from the country if they are convicted of certain crimes. A conviction for a...

If the Witness Refuses to Testify, Are the Charges Dropped?

  By HG.org
A common question that prosecutors are asked is if a case will be dismissed if the victim decides not to testify against the alleged abuser. The...

Drunk Driving Involving Children

  By HG.org
When children are involved with a driver that has been drinking, the crime becomes more serious than normal DUI offenses. These crimes may end...

Relationship between Alcohol and Domestic Violence

  By HG.org
Unfortunately, it is all too common for a link to exist between alcohol intake and domestic violence. In most situations, a person who commits...

Going to Trial or Accepting a Plea Bargain in a Vehicular Manslaughter Case

  By HG.org
When a person drives drunk and causes an accident that results in death, he or she may be charged with vehicular manslaughter. The major...

Federal BAC for Pilots

  By HG.org
While most individuals associate drinking and transportation with drunk drivers of passenger vehicles, other people responsible for...


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