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August 2012 Archives

Kent County to have increased Labor Day drunk driving patrols

Much like last year at this time, motorists in Kent County will want to be extra careful because extra patrols will be out scouring the county for drunk drivers. Though the number of alcohol-related crashes is falling, the federal government continues to fund programs like the Labor Day "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" program.

Nationwide push to end life sentences for juvenile offenders

Within Michigan and across the country there are 2,500 people who have been convicted of murder, but, unlike many of the other people in the country serving time for the crime, these individuals committed the crime while they were children. Despite being juveniles at the time of their alleged offenses, they have been sentenced to life sentences or de facto life sentences.

Grand Rapids meth charges may lead to big fines, life in prison

With Michigan's war on drugs raging, questions have been raised about whether punishments are too severe. There has been a drastic shift in public and police perception of methamphetamines recently and many people in Grand Rapids are feeling the effects of overzealous drug prosecutions. Whether it is arresting and charging people on insufficient or shoddy evidence or excessively punishing someone who is found guilty, meth has had a large impact on current police activity.

Michigan asked to change ignition interlock laws

Anyone convicted of a second or subsequent drunk driving offense in Michigan will not only face harsher penalties and a greater social stigma, but he or she will also need to install an ignition interlock device. Michigan devices will prevent a vehicle from starting if the driver has a blood alcohol content of 0.025 or higher, well under the legal limit for intoxication.

Michigan man denied bond for having sex while a teenager

When judges decide who is and is not eligible for bond, they generally look to see who will be a threat to society. Though there is no hard and fast rule about who is and who is not eligible, judges often don't deny bond unless there is a good reason. In this case, however, it is unclear just whether a judge's reason for denying a 22-year-old Saginaw man's bond as he awaits an appellate court's decision was truly for good reason.

Ochocino arrested for allegedly head butting wife

We have covered numerous times the problems that come with being arrested and charged with domestic violence. While the American legal system insists that individuals are innocent until proven guilty, many people in Grand Rapids know that there are certain people for whom it is reversed: they are guilty until proven innocent. People in the public eye, such as famous athletes, are often assumed to be guilty the moment an accusation comes out.

Michigan activists push for more super drunk convictions

In Michigan and across the country, there is a lot of moral condemnation of drunk driving. When people are convicted of drunk driving, it comes with considerable negative assumptions about the individual and his or her behavior. In reality, some of the people who are convicted of operating while intoxicated may have had just one drink too many. That has not stopped some people from talking about how upset they are that there aren't more drunk driving convictions.

Felony conviction hinges on whether man was seriously injured

The difference between a felony and a misdemeanor conviction lies in the hand of a visiting Saginaw County circuit judge after a suspended Michigan State Police officer was arrested and charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing serious injury and is also facing charges under the Michigan Super Drunk law. The officer had asked that the felony charged be dropped, but the county's chief circuit judge said the question of whether the man the trooper allegedly hit was seriously injured needed to be decided by the trier of fact.

Facebook video leads to arrest of 2 teenagers for murder

There is a new story emerging about the lengths police will go to investigate crimes. Two teenagers, 17- and 18-years-old, have recently been charged with first degree murder following the death of a 62-year-old man. In order to be charged with such a serious crime, police need to have substantial and credible evidence of these teenagers' involvement in the crime. What they actually have, however, calls into question whether prosecutors had sufficient evidence to charge the teens.

Wyoming can't stop Michiganders from growing medical marijuana

One 60-year-old man from Wyoming, Michigan, thought that when he was given a prescription by his physician for medical marijuana that there wouldn't be any problem with growing his own supply of his medicine. Unfortunately, Wyoming passed a city ordinance that would have made it a drug crime to grow marijuana, even for medical purposes, citing the federal restrictions on marijuana. The 60-year-old sued his city, saying they couldn't outlaw what the state just made legal and now, he's won.

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James K. Champion Criminal Defense Lawyer Grand Rapids MI 616-773-2748 Grand Rapids MI attorney James K. Champion has the experience to help you get the best outcome if you are charged with a crime such as drunk driving, rape and other violent crimes.

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