Most people are familiar with the legal concept of "double jeopardy." Protections against it are rooted in the Fifth Amendment, which says in part, "No person shall ... be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb."
With so much communication done online and digitally now, it can be too easy for some people to write things that they wouldn't say face-to-face. However, words that can be reasonably construed as threatening can have consequences. So can emojis -- those symbols that are becoming a staple of online communication.
Charges of lying to or withholding information from law enforcement authorities are nothing to be taken lightly. A Bardstown, Kentucky, man is facing 38 counts of perjury. He is accused of lying under oath to investigators regarding the disappearance of a Kentucky woman in July 2015. He is being held on $200,000 cash bond and due in court on Jan. 7.
Going to prison is just one of the long-term consequences associated with a criminal conviction. All the talk recently in the media about prisoner release programs and the need for sentences for conviction of a criminal charge that do not rely incarceration appear to be falling on deaf ears.
As a general rule, what the police can see from a road or public sidewalk can be seized by them without violating someone’s constitutional rights. What this means is that leaving an illegal explosive device out in the open on your kitchen table so it is clearly visible to anyway, including police, from the sidewalk is visible from the sidewalk is probably not a good idea.
The complexity of today’s criminal laws can make it easy for even normally law-abiding citizens to run afoul of them. False allegations, such as frequently occur in domestic assault cases, may result in the filing of a criminal charge.
A traffic violation usually results in a lot of grumbling about having to pay penalties because you forgot to activate your turn signal. Sometimes, however, being stopped by the police can end with serious misdemeanor or felony charges because of what police find during a search of the vehicle.
Criminal defense attorneys frequently advise their clients not to give statements to the police because those statements can be used to convict the person of a criminal charge. It should go without saying that if making statements to the police is not a good idea, then putting them into a book and publishing it has got to be one of the worst ideas ever.
The plethora of both federal and Kentucky state laws that you may be subject to at any given time, whether your are at work or even at home, can be daunting to consider. “Ignorance of the law is not a defense” is a phrase you may already be familiar with, but it can take on a more frightening meaning when you consider the law in terms of, “You don’t know what you don’t know."
There is a saying among lawyers, "The law is a seamless web." What this means is that when you are involved with one part of the law, you will frequently discover that you will also touch upon one or more other areas at the same time. This is true of criminal as well as civil law in Kentucky, as an incident involving three men illustrates.