Thursday, February 5, 2015

Minnesota Terroristic Threats Charges


In the State of Minnesota making a Terrorist Threat is considered a felony offense. That being said ... even a innocent statement can be considered a threat when it was never intended to be such. Maybe you said something out of frustration, anger, or were annoyed. In the end, it all comes down to how someone else interprets the statement that was made. If they do so incorrectly, then it turns into something very serious. That is why you need to turn to an experienced Minneapolis Criminal Defense Attorney who can defend your rights and reveal the facts in your case. 

What Are Terroristic Threat?

There are different types of terroristic threats. One of the most common type is when someone threatens violence --- and a conviction can result in a fine of up to $10,000 and five years in prison. 


If any of the following factors exist, then a terroristic threat charge could result:
  • A public place or mode of public transportation is evacuated because of an alleged threat
  • The public experiences an inconvenience caused by an alleged threat and/or the threat is the result of reckless disregard for others and the terror that the threat can cause them.
  • The threat is to commit a violent crime with the intention of terrorizing another person or other people.
A person may also tell another that they are going to commit a terrorist act or terrorize people in some way. Simply saying that there is a possible threat, such as an explosive or another device located within a building or area, regardless of whether it is or not, a conviction can result. 

How to Defend a Terroristic Threat Accusation?

Every type of alleged threat is taken very seriously, by the government, and this is why you need a Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer.  While it may seem as if the charges cannot be beat, it is not impossible. Like ... when the accusations don’t have enough evidence to back them up. 
 

Terroristic threats are very serious crimes ... with just as serious penalities and consequences.  So ... know this: it will be aggressively prosecuted, even if that statement or action was not a threat at all. If you have been accused of making a terroristic threat, call the Rolloff Law Office at (612) 234-1165 for a FREE CONSULTATION.  

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

MN Domestic Assault Charges (Victim's Rights)


Domestic assault, believe it or not, one of the most commonly charged crimes in State of Minnesota ... and, if not handled properly, can carry significant consequences.

Honestly, it is not an exaggeration ... if your significant other or family member says you struck them, or even placed them in fear of being harmed ... that is all it takes to be arrested.  

However, often those expressions - ie., that someone believed they were in fear of being harmed are not what the alleged victim actually says; rather, it is the "rush to judgment" conclusion of the officer on the scene ... and can lead to (without that person's say-so) their loved one being hauled off to jail --- often an unintended consequences of a call to the authorities.  

The State "Presses Charges" - not the Victim

One thing many people do not learn until well after the fact is that, if the alleged victim does not want to “press charges”, even if she changes her story or admits she lied, the charges do not get dismissed on that statement.  As an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney, I have dealt this situation ... ie., "she doesn’t want to press charges" ... and many believ that this will lead to an easy dismissal of a case.  Sadly, that is often not true.  


I think we'd all take some comfort in knowing that once an accusation has been made, if that individual has lied or misunderstood a perceived incident can come forth and tell the truth, and spare the accused the very real consequences of criminal prosecution.  Unfortunately, the tactics of many prosecuting authorities, officers, and even non-profit shelters and similar organizations, encourage the alleged victim to stick to her story, no matter what.  This has become systemic.  

What is a DANCO?

A Domestic abuse no-contact order, or “DANCO”, prevents the ability of the 911 caller to have subsequent conversations with the accused which might clarify the circumstances of the incident.  An order for protection may do the same.  The accused is automatically arrested, preventing any contact with other witnesses or demonstration of evidence proving the alleged victim’s story is not true.  From the beginning then, both parties are isolated from one another, and the accused is isolated from everyone, leaving only the accuser free to function and assemble a case, and be influenced by other people.

You’ll often see staff from shelters sitting in court, consulting with the woman afterward, speaking to police and the County.  To be clear, these shelters do great work and help and protect thousands of abused women every year, especially when they have no place to live or hide from an aggressive stalker.  However, at times,  staff from these facilities function as an agent of law enforcement, and in a handful of cases, they shelter and alleged victim from her obligation to tell the truth.  It doesn’t help that these incidents are often not black and white, and perhaps the accuser wants separation, but has embellished her story and only qualifies for the benefits of this shelter while she sticks to her story.  There may be children involved, and sometimes family attorneys and shelter staff will end up advising the accuser to stick to her story put her in the best position to have custodial advantage.  


Earning a Dismissal

Perhaps the greatest act of true violence to the truth, however, is when the state threatens their “victim.”   Again, we have a justice system that SHOULD encourage the truth.  We should not have to wait until a trial with sworn jurors and the accuser under oath to hear the truth.  This happens more often then people would like to think.  In fact, when push comes to shove, it happens nearly every time.  We have personally fielded calls from victims in tears saying they made it up, and that they told the prosecutor, and the case still is not dismissed.  We never ever put down our shield and sword, and continue to fight the case through trial.

If you’re charged with domestic assault, the fact is you cannot rely on your accuser to close your case.  You need an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney that understands procedure, investigation, and who will do the witness preparation that the state apparently won’t.  The fact is, with a “not guilty” plea, and a trial setting, if your lawyer sends an investigator to speak with the accuser and she recants, the state cannot call her as a witness just to get in her statement to police.  That is a rule born out of some complicated case law.  That statement CAN be suppressed, and the case can be dismissed on the day of trial, if you hire a lawyer that understands the rules of evidence, and who can secure the necessary information ahead of time.

  

If you’ve been accused of Domestic Assault, you need to contact an experienced St. Paul & Minneapolis Criminal Defense Lawyer who serves the south metro area such as Apple Valley, Eagan, Lakeville, Burnsville, Woodbury, Farmington, Rosemount, and Northfield.  Call the Rolloff Law Office - today - to set up a FREE CONSULTATION: (612) 234-1165.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Minnesota Disorderly Conduct (Explained)


Facing disorderly conduct charges? You may want to consider employing the services an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney to help. 


What is Disorderly Conduct?

Disorderly conduct charges can encompass a variety of crimes from yelling to fighting. Specifically disorderly conduct includes:

  • Engaging in brawling or fighting
  • Disturbing an assembly or meeting
  • Engaging in offensive, obscene, abusive, boisterous, or noisy conduct or in offensive, obscene, or abusive language tending reasonably to arouse alarm, anger, or resentment in others.
What are the Penalities?

A typical, disorderly conduct charge is deemed a misdemeanor --- punishable by up to 90 days in jail and/or a $1,000 fine. 

If the person is a caregiver and commits disorderly conduct against a vulnerable adult, that individual could be charged with a gross misdemeanor, punishable by up to one ear in jail and / or a $3,000 fine. 



If you have questions or want to with a former prosecutor to help you with your case, contact the Rolloff Law Office and set up a FREE CONSULTATION: (612) 234-1165

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

City of St. Paul Prostitution Arrests


If you are charged with solicitation of a prostitute ... not only is it a humiliating experience - one that can be devastating to your reputation and family relationships ... it can also lead to large fines and possible jail consequences.   

While the penalty for soliciting prostitution in MN can vary greatly depending on the circumstances, even simple solicitation charges deserve the attention of an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer.  


Prostitution and Minnesota's Laws

Under typical most circumstances, the criminal penalties for solicitation and prostitution are not as severe as other sex crimes - ie., rape/molestation. 


Most often, a first-time solicitation is treated as a a misdemeanor carrying a maximum jail sentence of 90 days and a fine of $1000. (There are also mandatory minimum fines - ranging from $500 and $1500.)  Subsequent charges can be deemed a gross misdemeanor and lead to up to a year in jail and a $3000 fine.  These are the typical sentences.  

That being said ... most resolutions of these cases are not TYPICAL.  Because for some people ...  there are consequences that can be felt outside for court.  As an example, if you are here on non-immigrant visas such as an H1-B work visa, or are here illegally, the consequences of a criminal conviction you might risk the revocation of your visa and possible deportation. 

With so much on the line, it is important to contact an attorney immediately to defend you.

What is There to Fight?

Prostitution arrests frequently involve undercover operations - ie., "stings.".  To me, this raises certain issues that an attorney for solicitation of a prostitute is best equipped to address. If we can convince a judge to find that the police violated your constitutional rights in the process of an investigation, a dismissal of the charges might be warranted.
 


The Rolloff Law Office can help you  effectively defend your case. Call today to set-up a FREE CONSULTATION: (612) 234-1165.

Hiring a Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney - Part II (Explained)


If you believe you need an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney to help you or your loved one, be smart about your decision. After reading this ... you may also want to consider the following:

Trust Your Gut

If you aren't comfortable with the Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer that you've consulted with try a different office. Believe it or not: you do not have any obligation to hire a lawyer merely because you met with him or her. If your lawyer is promising you that your case is easy, or makes promises that you won't go to jail, speak to other lawyers before signing a retainer agreement - some lawyers misrepresent the gravity of the situation or the complexity of a case ... in order to entice someone into paying a huge fee, and then blame the judge or prosecutor when the promises they made don't come true.

Pay Lawyer or Public Defender?

People who are charged with serious, felony offenses, and many individuals who are charged with certain misdemeanors, may be eligible for a free lawyer - ie.,, the public defender.  This is based on an assessment of the defendant's resources to determine if the he/she will qualify for an appointment of a free lawyer. 

Some people assume that a court appointed criminal defense lawyer will offer services which are inferior to a privately retained lawyer --- this isn't always true.  Sure, some public defenders will prove to be insufficiently skilled or dedicated to their work to provide an effective defense --- but, you could find some private attorneys who are equally flawed.

One main difference ... "customer-service."  A private attorney is likely to have more time to involve themselves in your case --- able to answer your questions at any time/anywhere.




If you can hire an effective Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer you should not hesitate to do so. Not all lawyers are the same ... and prices vary widely.  Call the Rolloff Law Office to see if we might be able to help you: (612) 234-1165. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Minnesota Domestic Assault Charge - False Allegations


As a Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney, I get loads of calls about domestic violence/assault charges.  Here is an article from the Huffington Post that sets for a number of things anybody facing allegations of this nature should consider.  

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Domestic violence is an important public health issue, and one which has been gaining increased attention in recent years on a variety of fronts, particularly with respect to professional athletes. States, of course, have various approaches for dealing with the issue, including housing and employment protections, protecting the identity of residents of domestic violence shelters, and broadening the definition of abuse.

One of the areas where states are falling short, according to experts, is in focusing on at-risk demographic groups. Different groups face different risks when it comes to domestic violence investigation. 

For instance, African American women are more likely to be killed by a partner than victims in other groups, whereas women who are unable to speak English are more likely to be unable to communicate to police officers to give an accurate version of incidents. Hispanic women are less likely to seek help from a shelter, while Native American women are more likely to be in a situation where police are unable to arrest a battering partner. Each of these unique challenges has to be met if the problem is to be adequately addressed.

As important as it is to ensure protection for those who suffer at the hands of an abusive partner, though, it is also important to remember that those accused of domestic violence have a right to defend themselves from unjust charges. Because of the nature of domestic violence investigations, it can and does sometimes happen that officers fail to gather the evidence necessary to make an accurate judgment about an incident. In some cases, those errors are not corrected and the accused face charges that don’t accurately reflect the events that took place.

Those who have been unjustly accused of domestic violence need to know that they don’t just have to succumb to the criminal process, but that they have rights. Working with an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney can help to ensure that all the evidence is presented in their case and that they are able to take advantage of protections available to them.

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Source: Huffington Post, “When It Comes to Handling Domestic Violence Cases, States Are Still Falling Short,” Teresa Wiltz, September 22, 2014.
 
 
If you or someone you love is facing a court date, feel free to contact the Rolloff Law Office and set up a free consultation: (612) 234-1165

Sunday, January 25, 2015

What is Minnesota Gross Misdemeanor?


As an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney, I get lots of questions.  Here's a common one:

What is a Gross Misdemeanor?

Under the laws of the State of Minnesota, a gross misdemeanor is a category of criminal offense that is punishable by a fine of up to $3,000 and/or one year in jail. 

Gross misdemeanors are considered more serious than misdemeanor offenses, but they are not as serious as felonies. If you have been charged with a gross misdemeanor, it is your right to secure the services of a highly qualified Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer

Although a gross misdemeanor may not seem serious, the consequences of a conviction can follow you for the rest of your life. By fighting the charges, you may be able to minimize – or in some cases, completely avoid – the consequences.

A List of Gross Misdemeanor Offenses

  • Repeat assault offenses
  • Refusal to Submit to Testing
  • Some DWI offenses (such as repeat violations or high alcohol readings)
  • Certain other traffic violations
  • Fifth Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct
  • Interference With a 911 Call
  • Prostitution and some other sex crimes. 

When you hire an experienced Minnesota criminal defense attorney, you will receive the guidance that you need throughout the legal process. The Rolloff Law Office has helped many individuals throughout Minnesota with defending against gross misdemeanor charges.  A conviction can lead to fines and jail time. The judge may also order counseling, house arrest, restitution or community service. This is in addition to the conviction that is present on your criminal record, which can be seen by potential landlords or employers, financial institutions, or anyone else who might be curious. Even a non-felony theft conviction can cause you problems in the long-term, putting your future at risk. Your attorney will help you by giving you the comprehensive legal help that you need to get the best result in your case.

Call today, for a FREE CONSULTATION: (612) 234-1165