Facing criminal charges is no laughing matter. Both your personal and professional reputations are at stake. It is important that you obtain legal representation as quickly as possible. However, it is possible to make your situation worse by choosing the wrong attorney. Luckily, there are questions you can ask a Dublin criminal defense attorney during your initial consultation to help you make an informed decision. These questions include:
- What are the fees and costs for your legal services? During an initial consultation, an attorney should be upfront about the costs for his or her legal services. You should also have a conversation about the amount of defense investigation that needs to be done to prepare for trial. These services cost money, and it is important to discuss this before making a decision.
- Do you have experience defending clients whose cases were similar to mine? A Dublin criminal attorney should be willing to provide you with references and openly discuss his or her legal experience. Having experience working within the criminal justice system means that an attorney is in a better position to advocate on your behalf.
- What are my legal options? At the end of your initial consultation, an attorney should have a preliminary evaluation of the case against you. He or she should have a general idea of the legal strategies they would use to defend you at trial. If a criminal defense lawyer is unwilling to discuss your legal options, then you should consider looking elsewhere.
- Are there any actions I can take to help my legal situation? Often times, there are steps you can take to improve your chances for legal success. An attorney should have a list of information or records that you can provide to help him or her craft your legal defense. You should also ask about enrolling in classes, counseling or programs that could help lessen your sentence.
- Why are you the right attorney to handle my case? Every criminal defense attorney in Dublin, CA should have an elevator pitch explaining why you should retain his or her legal services. If the response you receive is not persuasive or lacks specificity, then you should continue your search for legal representation.
Schedule a Free Initial Consultation With a Dublin Criminal Defense Attorney
When facing a criminal charge, you need experienced legal counsel. Dublin criminal defense attorney Louis Goodman has spent over 30 years defending individuals from varying degrees of criminal charges. As a former Alameda County Deputy District Attorney, he knows what tactics prosecutors will use to increase the likelihood of a conviction.
If you have been arrested or are under investigation, then contact the Law Office of Louis J. Goodman today at (510)582-9090 and schedule a free initial consultation. You can also contact our criminal defense law firm online and tell us more about your case.
When a witness is brought in for questioning, they may be asked to provide evidence that could potentially incriminate them. The Fifth Amendment, however, protects witnesses from sharing incriminating information against themselves should it be invoked, and the witness refuses to answer any more questions. However, it is possible for an investigator to push past this privilege and obtain the information they require. By offering the witness immunity, the witness could avoid prosecution in exchange for a testimony.
The broadest type of immunity that is usually granted is transactional immunity. Also known as “total” or “blanket” immunity, transactional immunity offers complete protection from future prosecution for anything mentioned in the witness’ testimony. Keep in mind, however, that transactional immunity does not protect against prosecution for unrelated crimes mentioned in the testimony. Further, transactional immunity is not offered by the federal system, so it may not be offered as readily as one might think.
Used by both federal and state systems, use and derivative use immunity is a common but narrower type of immunity that could be offered to the witness. This immunity stops the prosecution from using the witness’ statements or the evidence derived from those statements against the witness. Use and derivative use immunity does not protect against additional investigation, on the part of the prosecution, into crimes mentioned by the witness. Charges could be brought against the witness for their mentioned crime only if independent evidence is provided proving the crime. If independent evidence separate from the testimony is not provided, the judge could block the use of the immunized testimony.
A witness can also waive immunity if they wish. Immunity can be waived using a written statement, testifying before immunity is granted, or by not asking for immunity in a timely manner. When a witness waives immunity, the previously immunized testimony can be used in the case. However, before you consider waiving immunity, meet with criminal defense lawyer beforehand. Our team at the Law Office of Louis J. Goodman can protect your rights and interests as a witness.
In many cases, people are accused of stalking even though under the definition of the law, they did not commit any acts that would be considered stalking in California.
Definition of Stalking in California
CA.gov features a page on stalking in California. The page has a section on it regarding behaviors that are defined as stalking. These behaviors include the following:
- Spying – This can include cyberstalking, literally hiding and spying or showing up at an event and keeping watch.
- Threatening – Making threats that cause the victim fear or apprehension, such as threatening to enter the victim’s home.
- Monitoring – Keeping track of the victim’s activities by following them online through their social media pages, using a GPS device or questioning the victim’s friends and family about the victim’s activities and whereabouts.
- Harassing – Making several calls to the victim that are harassing in their frequency or due to their content.
There are several defenses that can be used if you have been accused of stalking. To learn more about what happens if you are accused of stalking in California and what you should do about it, call the Law Office of Louis J. Goodman. Criminal defense lawyer Louis J. Goodman has been successfully protecting the rights of people charged with stalking. Contact our office today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your situation with him.
Attorney Louis J. Goodman, speaks about guns and gun charges in the State of California. Watch as he sheds light on legal matters concerning this issue.