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Utilizing suppression of evidence in criminal defense

Despite Colorado taking a lenient stance on marijuana possession and use, the fact remains that most drugs remain illegal in every respect. That means that individuals who are accused of possessing, manufacturing or distributing drugs, like methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin and other narcotics can face the possibility of severe penalties. If convicted on drug charges, an individual may be hit with extensive prison time, financially ruinous fines and irreparable damage to one's reputation. This is why a skilled criminal defense is needed in these matters.

One way to defend against drug charges is to assess the legality of law enforcement's actions, particularly as they related to the collection of the evidence on which the case is based. This is crucial because evidence that is gathered subsequent to an illegal search or seizure can be suppressed, meaning that the evidence cannot be used against an individual at trial. This is true even if the evidence is otherwise admissible.

What should I know about DUI in Colorado?

Drunk driving charges are serious legal matters and individuals who are charged with DUI and other alcohol-related driving crimes should know that their rights and privileges may be threatened by convictions. This post is offered as a general and informative overview of Colorado's DUI laws. It is not a substitute for individual legal advice and consultation with a DUI attorney.

In Colorado, a driver may be stopped if they exhibit signs of intoxication and tested for alcohol in their body. A person is considered "per se" intoxicated if their blood alcohol concentration is at or above .08 percent. Per se intoxication means that the person is guilty of drunk driving even if there are no other signs or evidence of intoxication in their driving.

New Year may bring a wave of new divorces

Although December may be a month of making resolutions and planning for the future, for some Colorado residents January may be the month in which they bring about major life changes. That is because throughout the country January, has become known as "divorce month." Americans often wait until after the holidays to end their marriages and begin the process of separating themselves from their partners.

For some, January is the right time to file for divorce so that they do not potentially ruin the holidays for their children and extended family members. They may choose to keep the peace through the end of the year in order to protect those that they love from the experience of divorce. Once the holidays are over and family life goes back to normal, those planning to divorce may choose to act and contact their divorce attorneys at the start of the year.

Digging into the details of Colorado child support

Child support is often a necessary piece of the negotiations that individuals must work through when they choose to end their marriages in divorce. Unlike spousal support, which may be used by a recipient spouse for their own post-divorce needs, child support is money provided by parents for the benefit of their kids. In Colorado, both of a child's parents are expected to contribute to their financial support after divorce.

Several factors will guide the decision on how much support should be awarded in a case involving children. First, the financial situations of the parents will be evaluated to determine how much each of them can contribute to the care and maintenance of their kids. Second, the financial situation of the child will also be looked at; some children may have more financial resources at their disposal than others and those sources of funding must be included in determinations about how they will be provided for.

Should a separation agreement be part of my divorce case?

There might be a perception that a divorce in Colorado will be acrimonious and the parties will battle over every aspect of it. That is true in some instances, but in others, the parties want to come to a reasonable agreement and move forward as efficiently and smoothly as possible. In cases where it is believed to be possible for the sides to negotiate, a separation agreement could be a viable alternative. Before taking this step, it is important to understand the law for a separation agreement and possible divorce.

A written separation agreement is used to have an amicable agreement. In it, there will be provisions to detail how much maintenance is paid and by whom. It will also determine how property is disposed of and split regardless of who owns it individually or jointly. The agreement can also state how parenting issues are handled including custody, support and parenting time.

Man faces drug charges for growing too many marijuana plants

Since Colorado was one of the first states in the union to allow people to legally grow, possess and use marijuana, there can be mistakes with the minuscule details of the law. This might lead to arrests. It is important for people to understand the legal limits. In many cases, it is a simple misunderstanding, and there are strategies to have the charges reduced or even dismissed. Regardless of the situation, it is essential for those dealing with drug charges related to marijuana to have legal advice to seek a satisfactory resolution and avoid the worst possible consequences.

A 54-year-old man was arrested for growing too many marijuana plants in his home. Based on the current law for growing marijuana, people can have up to 12 plants in their home. This man, however, had 50 such plants. When officers arrived at his residence, he asserted that he had a license to grow that many. There is no such license in the state. The value of the plants was around $72,000.

Drivers should be aware of Thanksgiving DUI enforcement

In Colorado and across the United States, people celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday in various ways. Some will visit with friends and family, attend parties and take time to relax and have a good time. Part of that might involve drinking alcohol and other legal substances. While there is nothing wrong with that, it does not mean people can get behind the wheel while intoxicated. Some, however, will do that and it can cause accidents with injuries and fatalities. Law enforcement tries to catch these drivers and arrest them. For people who are arrested for DUI during the holidays, it is important to understand the value of a strong legal defense.

State law enforcement is encouraging Coloradans to enjoy the holiday while simultaneously stepping up its efforts to catch people committing DUI. This is understandable given the dangers of DUI. In 2018, out of every five fatalities during Thanksgiving travel time, four involved DUI. That is 80 percent. In the previous year, it was 40 percent. In 2018, almost 600 people were placed under arrest in the state for DUI-related charges.

What are key factors for parenting time in a Colorado divorce?

Coloradans who are going through a divorce will likely face many challenges throughout the process. That can include property and asset division, determining child support, spousal support and more. One of the most complicated and emotionally draining aspects of family law is parenting time, also referred to as visitation rights. When the court decides on parenting time or the parents come to a negotiated settlement that must be approved by the court, the best interests of the child are paramount. Understanding the law is imperative throughout the case.

The child's well-being will be the most important factor in these determinations. If there are allegations of any form of abuse, this will be a mitigating consideration when deciding on parenting time. Aside from that, the court will weigh various relevant factors when deciding on how parenting time will be allocated. That includes: the parents' desires regarding parenting time; the child's preferences if he or she is deemed to be of sufficient maturity to express that preference; how the child interacts with the parents, siblings and anyone else who might be part of serving the child's best interests; and how the child adjusts to the community, the home and school.

Man faces drug charges for hiding heroin on dog in traffic stop

Drug charges can come about in a variety of ways in Colorado. One common circumstance is when the drugs are found during a traffic stop. People who are confronted with allegations of drug possession, drug sales, drug trafficking and more might also be accused of hiding the substances in creative ways. Frequently, law enforcement will find the drugs and make an arrest. While drug crimes are serious, there are avenues that people can use to cobble together an effective defense to avoid the worst possible penalties.

A 28-year-old man is facing drug charges after his vehicle was stopped by law enforcement and heroin was found hidden in his dog's jacket. The man was in a white Subaru and had illegal license plates. When he was stopped and officers spoke to him, he gave them a phony name. When they discovered who he was, he was arrested because he had warrants. During the investigation, they saw the dog. Because the man was arrested, the dog was brought to the Humane Society. An officer felt a container when holding the dog and discovered it had heroin. The man faces numerous charges related to this series of incidents.

Breathalyzer tests for DUI increasingly called into question

When Coloradans and people across the U.S. are stopped by law enforcement on suspicion of driving under the influence and asked to take a breathalyzer test, they are confronted with the possibility that they will register a blood-alcohol content that surpasses the legal limit and subsequently be arrested. If they do not comply, they will be charged with breathalyzer test refusal, which is a violation by itself. These charges can be problematic in multiple ways and a breath test is commonly one of the main sources of evidence used by law enforcement and prosecutors.

After that test and a BAC beyond the legal limit - which many laypersons generally automatically accept as accurate - they will face a conviction and the accompanying penalties. Increasingly, however, the machines that are used for the tests are called into question. This is drawing newfound scrutiny with a New York Times report about the inaccuracy of these test results. According to the report, the devices are marketed as being exceedingly accurate. Still, in New Jersey and Massachusetts, more than 30,000 of the tests were deemed inadmissible because of a lack of oversight and human error. This is prevalent throughout the nation.

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