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17 Common Legal Defenses in California | Jake Brower, Attorney At Law |Criminal Lawyer | Criminal Defense |DUI Defense Attorney |Felony Arrests |3-Strike Cases |Santa Ana, Orange County, CA

Child Endangerment

  • 17 Common Legal Defenses in California

    Posted Jan 18th, 2013 By in Child Endangerment, Criminal Law, DUI, Interrogation Process With | Comments Off on 17 Common Legal Defenses in California

    When you find that you’ve been charged with a crime, you hope for the best criminal defense attorney you can get. But you need to be aware of your options during the defense. If you find yourself caught in any of these situations, you already know what to push for.

    A list of the 17 most common legal defenses in California are listed below.

    1)      Accidents – California law recognizes that accidents happen and excuses alleged criminal conduct that occurs accidentally. If you accidentally commit an act that amounts to a crime without criminal intent or negligence, you should bear no criminal liability. But if it appears you acted with ordinary or criminal negligence (when you fail to act as a “reasonably prudent” person would have, with a reckless “I don’t care what happens” attitude), you will be charged.

    2)      Alibi – “Alibi” is Latin for “in another place.” You have one if you are accused of a crime but where somewhere else at the time it was committed. Your alibi is strengthened if it can be corroborated with evidence.

    3)      Coerced Confessions – Police may not use overbearing measures to coerce an involuntary confession. They cannot continue to question you even after you ask for a lawyer; deprive you of food, water, or sleep; “beat” you (or threaten harm or greater punishment); and/or make false promises of leniency in exchange for a confession.

    4)      Double Jeopardy – The Constitution protects you from being prosecuted a second time for the same offense following an acquittal or a conviction. Nor can you face multiple punishments for the same offense.

    5)      Duress – If you commit a crime because you reasonably believed that your life was in immediate danger, then you are excused.

    6)      Entrapment – This occurs when you would not have committed the alleged crime if you hadn’t been harassed, threatened, or coerced by the police or their agents. It means that the police, who were likely undercover, persuaded you to commit a crime. This is common with sex and drug crimes.

    7)      False Accusations / Wrongful Arrest

    8)      Insanity – In California, the test for determining whether a defendant is legally insane is known as the M’Naghten test.

    9)      Lack of Probable Cause – The California search and seizure rules require police to have probable cause (a reasonable and cautious officer would believe that criminal activity is or was taking place based on the surrounding circumstances) before they can detain you or arrest you.

    10)   Mistaken Identity – Mistaken eyewitness identification

    11)   Mistake of Fact – If you act under an honest and reasonable mistake of fact, you are not guilty of a crime. For example: You take your neighbor’s lawnmower because you believed it was the one he never returned to you.  However, you can’t break a law just because you don’t know it’s a law.

    12)   Necessity – Excuses criminal conduct when it is done only to avoid an even greater harm. If you reasonably believe that you or another person are about to suffer significant bodily harm, and there is no other reasonable legal alternative, you may be entitled to an acquittal of the charged offense(s).

    13)   Parents Right to Discipline a Child – This occurs when you discipline your child, are accused of child abuse, and can prove that your acts were not unreasonable or unjustified under the circumstances.

    14)   Police Misconduct – Planting evidence, lying or embellishing facts in their crime reports or courtroom testimony, or unnecessarily using Tasers or pepper spray on cooperative subjects.

    15)   Self-Defense / Defense of Others – If you injure or kill another person in self-defense or in defending another person, your conduct will be excused. But your actions must be reasonable under the circumstances.

    16)   Unconsciousness – If you are unconscious while you commit a crime, California law excuses your actions. This happens when you’re sleeping, delirious, suffering from an epileptic seizure, or are involuntarily intoxicated.

    17)   Voluntary and Involuntary Intoxication – It may bear on the issue of whether you possessed the requisite mental state to commit certain “specific intent” crimes. “Specific intent” means that you specifically intended the consequences of your act

    Read more about these defenses here.

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Jake Brower Criminal Defense Attorney, DUI Lawyer, Felony Arrests, 3-Strike Cases, Criminal Law, Drunk Driving Lawyer, Los Angeles, Orange, Anaheim, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Irvine, Huntington Beach, Long Beach, Mission Viejo, Aliso Viejo, Lake Forest, Rancho Santa Margarita,Santa Ana, Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Laguna Beach, Laguna Niguel, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, Beverly Hills, Hollywood,Oceanside, San Clemente, Carlsbad, Dana Point, Seal Beach, Long Beach, 1043 Civic Center Drive West, #200, Santa Ana CA 92703