When you hire a criminal defense attorney after you are charged with a crime, the ultimate goal of your attorney is to get your charges dropped or secure a “not-guilty” verdict. To accomplish this, your attorney will comprehensively review your case and develop the most tactical and strategic plan to negotiate with the prosecution or persuade a judge or jury. If it is possible to avoid having your case tried in the first place, that is another angle that your lawyer may pursue.

There can be very serious implications to criminal convictions, such as extensive time in jail, costly fines, destroyed reputation, and missing time with your family. Having quality legal counsel improves your chances of overcoming your charges. Your attorney will employ specific methods and actions that will improve your chances of getting the best results.

Five Tactics That Could Beat Criminal Charges

The following tactics could be successful in winning your criminal case:

  • Simply because charges are made and a case is active does not mean that it will go to trial. There are many instances in which there are clear flaws in a criminal prosecution. A lawyer who identifies these issues can file a Motion to Dismiss your case. If there are established grounds for a case dismissal, a judge may grant the motion and you will be free from your charges.
  • If law enforcement did not have legitimate legal cause for stopping or detaining you, it is possible to file a Motion to Suppress. If your lawyer can show that the police wrongfully stopped you and detained you and the motion is granted, it is likely that the prosecution will back down and drop the case.
  • Your lawyer can break down the forensic test results and show that they cannot be trusted and were conducted improperly.
  • Finding mistakes on behalf of law enforcement and discrediting officer testimony.
  • Taking the time to scrutinize every piece of evidence and each detail of the case to show that you are innocent of the charges you are facing.

The quality of your legal counsel will weigh heavily on how successful and effective your defense will be. An aggressive, convincing, and experienced attorney who has a history of getting the best possible results will be your best choice. Skilled lawyers like David M. Boertje know what they are doing and can provide the peace of mind that they will work hard for you.

If your case can be concluded expeditiously and not be tried in court, you will save time, money, and be better shielded from public shame. It is incredibly important that you connect with a qualified attorney as soon as you can after your arrest. Continue reading

If you were arrested in California for a crime, connect with an attorney to protect your rights and your freedoms right away. Depending on what crime you allegedly committed and the details surrounding the incident, it is possible that you will spend many years in prison and have to pay high fines if you are convicted. The aftermath of a conviction can be life-changing, and not in a good way.

Every year many Americans attempt to defend themselves from criminal charges without legal representation. The criminal justice system, though, is complex and tough to navigate. Accused people can easily be mistreated if they go it alone and are not prepared or knowledgeable about what to do to be successful.

In San Diego County, David M. Boertje is a San Diego criminal defense attorney who has represented thousands of criminal cases. As an experienced criminal defense lawyer, David M. Boertje has dedicated most of his professional life to providing superior legal defense services to people accused of crimes ranging from low-level misdemeanor cases to complicated felony charges. After an arrest, consider connecting with the Law Offices of David M. Boertje.

Why is the Criminal Justice System So Complicated?

Navigating the criminal justice system in the United States without proper training, with no understanding of how the system works, and with inadequate knowledge of laws and legal rights is virtually impossible. Even the most basic criminal charges may require many steps and actions to be taken combined with skilled strategy along the way.

There are several things to think about before you decide you want to self-represent yourself in your criminal case including:

  • Do you know how to interpret the law?
  • Do you know how to compile evidence to support your case?
  • Do you know how and when to file motions?
  • Do you know how to negotiate with prosecutors?
  • Do you know how to develop an effective and persuasive defense strategy?
  • Do you know how to challenge evidence presented against you?
  • Do you know what objecting to witness testimony is and how to do it?
  • Do you know how to formulate articulate and convincing arguments?
  • Do you know how to question witnesses and call them?

The questions above only represent a portion of the knowledge necessary to mount an effective defense that has a chance of getting a not guilty verdict or having charges dropped. 

This is why working with an experienced attorney with a proven track record of success getting charges reduced, dropped, obtaining favorable plea deals, and securing not-guilty verdicts is so critical. While Americans have a constitutional right to self-representation, when it comes to achieving the most favorable outcome possible, it is wise to work with a professional criminal defense attorney. Continue reading

The terms ‘murder’ and ‘homicide’ are sometimes used interchangeably as if they mean the same thing. In the legal world, however, the meanings of ‘murder’ and ‘homicide’ are quite different. Because of this, the way that a person is sentenced if they are convicted of murder or homicide will vary.

The one thing these two terms have in common is that whether a murder or a homicide was committed, the outcome is the same. Another person loses their life. Murder and homicide are some of the most serious crimes that go to court. These criminal acts often result in the harshest penalties.

If you live in or around the greater San Diego area and you were arrested for allegedly killing another person, it is in your best interest to immediately connect with a San Diego homicide attorney. Working with an experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney will improve your chances of beating your charges or having them lessened. 

If you were charged with statutory rape in California because the person you were intimate with portrayed themselves as older than they actually were, could you still be convicted? 

It has never been easier to get in touch with people you know or want to get to know. Even with restrictions and limitations on in-person gatherings, there is nothing holding people back from connecting online. Whether it be through dating services, social media apps, or other online platforms, communication between people can be done without having to actually be physically next to someone.

If you are meeting someone for the first time, or you have met them before, assuming they are a certain age is not good enough. When sex is involved, you still may be criminally charged if the person with whom you were intimate was not of legal age. When the person you had relations with showed you a fake ID or met you in a club where only those who are 21 years of age and older can frequent, you may think it is reasonable to be mistaken about their age. 

Going to court can be scary and distressing. Knowing that there will be a district attorney set to ensure you are convicted of your charges does not make things any better. 

When it comes to criminal cases, the defendant, or the person who is accused of the crimes, is not given the opportunity to choose who the prosecutor is. Also, the defendant will not be able to ask for a different prosecutor than the one who is assigned to their case. The only thing that a defendant can do is preclude some prosecutors from being considered. 

If there is a real and clear conflict of interest, then there is a chance for a new prosecutor. A conflict of interest happens when one party has something to gain from the fall of another. For example, if the defendant is alleged to have harmed a particular victim who is related to the prosecutor, it could be argued that the prosecutor has a bias and therefore should be ruled out as an option.

If you were arrested for a crime in California, the best thing to do right after is to get in contact with a San Diego criminal defense attorney. Building a persuasive and thorough defense is the only way that you can fight your charges and get your desired outcome. Ultimately, defendants will hire an attorney to get their charges dropped and their case thrown out.

Any competent criminal defense attorney in San Diego is going to be fighting for this result. In some cases, though, having this happen is not feasible. When that is the reality, your attorney must be ready to quickly switch to Plan B, which is getting your charges reduced. Reduced charges come with reduced penalties and that is key for any legal professional to shoot for as they represent their clients.

How Does Mistake of Fact Work?

Depending on the nature of your crimes, whether you have been charged with a felony or a misdemeanor, and how much warranted evidence there is against you, your defense attorney will help you build an effective defense. There are situations in which a defendant is charged with a crime that they did not even know they committed. Or a defendant may not think they were committing any crime when they took certain actions.

Think about this: If you believe that a piece of property is rightfully and legitimately yours and you take it, another party can call the police and say that you stole it. When you took the property, you did not believe it was owned by anyone other than yourself. You had no malicious intent to deprive another person of that property because you did not believe it belonged to anyone else. Yet, another party may feel like the property is theirs. 

A qualified criminal defense attorney will be able to show that you in no way took the property from your accuser because you wanted to permanently strip them of ownership of that property. In fact, this could not be true because you never truly believed the property belonged to your accuser in the first place. When you have a reasonable and logical belief that property was your own and you can illustrate this, then charges of larceny likely will not stick.

This type of defense is called Mistake of Fact. As the name implies, as a defendant, you did not know about a specific fact that you would have had to know in order to truly commit a crime. Mistake of Fact is a defense strategy that is used quite often. In the presence of sufficient evidence and quality legal counsel, a defendant can beat their charges using this strategy. Continue reading

A California arrest can be a  distressing and trying experience. If you have been arrested for a crime in the greater San Diego area, you are likely feeling many different emotions as you consider your future. Depending on the nature of your charges, you could be facing harsh penalties that will change your life forever. 

The best way to protect yourself and your freedom is to work with an experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney. David M. Boertje is a criminal defense lawyer in San Diego who understands the way that the criminal justice system operates and how to develop customized defense strategies that can improve your chances of having your case dropped or your charges reduced. With a keen understanding of all legal procedures, David M. Boertje has the background you want to handle all the intricate aspects of your case.

What Should You Ask a California Criminal Defense Attorney?

Preparing to choose a criminal defense attorney in California is an important first step towards equipping yourself with the best chances of having a favorable result in your case. When you meet with an attorney, asking targeted questions can help you determine which legal mind will be the best for you. Choosing a defense lawyer in California should not be taken lightly as the outcome of your case will be highly dependent on your legal representation.

Consider bringing with you a list of questions. Here are some samples:

  • Are you licensed and experienced in practicing criminal law in San Diego?
  • How long have you been practicing in San Diego?
  • Do you have courtroom experience? If so, how many years?
  • Have you represented cases like mine? If so, what was the outcome?
  • How will communication work? What is the frequency of communication?
  • Are you responsive to phone calls and emails?
  • Can you tell me what defense strategies may work for my case?
  • What is the payment structure that you offer? Do you have payment plans?
  • Do you charge by the hour or is there a fixed rate that you use?
  • What would be a rough estimate of how much it will cost to hire you for my case?
  • Would pleading guilty be the right avenue for my case?

Writing down the information that you gather when you meet with an attorney is a good way to remember it, evaluate it, and determine then what attorney will serve you the best. When your liberties and freedoms are on the line, working with the most knowledgeable legal counsel is necessary.  Continue reading

If you were arrested in San Diego and your crime is considered a misdemeanor, you may think that you do not have to be too concerned about the outcome of your case. Ideally, avoiding jail time and fines is always the desired end result. Even when a crime is just a misdemeanor, it can still have harsh repercussions. 

It is critical to connect with an experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney after you are arrested for any crime. Understanding your rights and fighting to overcome your charges is incredibly important. Working with the right legal counsel in San Diego could be the difference between a clean criminal record and your freedom and costly criminal penalties that will have a negative impact on your life over the long term. David M. Boertje is a California criminal defense attorney who can examine your case and help you after your arrest.

The Negative Im[plications of a Misdemeanor Conviction in California

If convicted of a misdemeanor crime, defendants could face:

  • Community service
  • Jail time
  • Probation
  • Costly fines

It is not just the physical punishments like jail time or fines that will affect your life. If your record is clean, it will not be any longer when a conviction takes place. Any employer, financial institution, or another party that wants to do a background check on you will see your conviction. This could mean that you will have a difficult time moving forward after your conviction. It may be considerably harder to:

  • Get a loan.
  • Be accepted into a school.
  • Find a job.
  • Keep your current job.
  • Develop new relationships with others.
  • Get financial aid.
  • Have a housing application accepted.

These are just some of the struggles a person that was convicted of a California misdemeanor crime can face. It is certainly true, getting along in life is much easier without a criminal background.

It is possible to fight misdemeanor charges, especially if you have a talented and knowledgeable San Diego misdemeanor attorney on your side. Potentially the evidence against you was obtained illegally and can be thrown out. Another way to gain a favorable result is with a persuasive defense strategy. Some examples include:

  • You were under duress at the time the crime was committed and could not avoid doing it without sustaining harm.
  • You were compelled to commit the crime to avoid a much more severe crime from taking place.
  • You committed a crime because you were acting in self-defense.
  • You did not understand or intend to commit a crime and instead, the crime was a mistake of fact.
  • Intoxication was a factor in the crime that was committed.

Continue reading

Being arrested in California for an alleged crime is never a good thing. An arrest can mean serious legal repercussions including jail time and expensive fines. The implications of a criminal record can follow a person around for a very long time, impairing their ability to succeed in life and society.

Depending on the crime that is committed, it can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. Misdemeanor crimes tend to be less grievous than felonies and because of this, the penalties that come with them are not as harsh as felonies. Also with misdemeanor crimes, there is often more flexibility with regard to sentencing after a conviction. On January 1, 2021, updated California law gives judges expanded discretion to grant diversion for more individuals convicted of misdemeanor crimes.

How Do New California Sentencing Laws Affect People Convicted of Misdemeanor Crimes?

Before California Assembly bill 3234 was enacted, there were many misdemeanor crimes that did not qualify for diversion programs. Individuals who struggle with drug addiction and mental health issues were typically the only individuals who could be considered for diversion. Now almost all of the misdemeanor crimes with the exception of just a few for stalking, domestic violence, and sex crimes can be considered for diversion by a judge.

This means that if you are charged with any of the following misdemeanors you could be given a diversion by the judge in your case:

  • Drug crimes
  • Criminal threats
  • Elder abuse
  • Child abuse
  • DUI
  • Assault
  • Vehicular manslaughter
  • Carrying a concealed gun

If you are lucky enough to be given a diversion, under AB 3234, it is possible to have your case dismissed. If you complete all requirements of your diversion as set forth by the judge, then you could even have your criminal case erased from your record. Avoiding a criminal record will be critical to the outcome of the rest of your life and your potential success.

Even in situations in which the prosecutor objects to a diversion, the judge still has the final say and can grant it regardless of the position of the prosecution. A judge will set the conditions of the diversion program. Depending on the defendant’s circumstances, this could mean:

  • Attending a substance abuse program.
  • Engaging in some type of community service.
  • Taking anger management courses.
  • A combination of beneficial and rehabilitative programs.

While the enlargement of the diversion program in California is a valuable opportunity for people convicted of certain misdemeanors to overcome their charges and start anew, there are still repercussions that will not change. Restitution to victims must still be paid. If protective orders were issued, they must continue to be followed. Continue reading

When jail should be used as a sentence, how severe it should be, and who it benefits are questions that have been discussed widely in recent years. There are some crimes to which many people would agree jail time is an appropriate response, such as homicide. However, for other crimes, there are different sides in staunch opposition regarding the use of jail time as a penalty. Drug use is one of the crimes that many believe is not remedied with jail time. Individuals addicted to drugs are said to have a disease, and so jailing them for a disease is not fair or effective.

David M. Boertje is a San Diego drug crime defense attorney who can thoroughly investigate your criminal case and develop a decisive strategy for your defense. Specifically, if you have a drug addiction and were arrested because of your condition, there may be alternative programs and options available to avoid jail time and get the help you need to beat your dependency issues.

How Does Jail Time Affect Crime and Drug Use?

With the exception of marijuana in recent years, there are many illegal substances that will result in an arrest if an officer finds them on you. For drug abusers, it may be unavoidable to stay out of prison because of the addiction they suffer. Several experts have labeled addiction a medical condition that can be treated. Medical experts agree that jail time is not an appropriate remedy for someone suffering from a disease of the brain, a.k.a. drug addiction.

What jail time does for drug addicts is potentially keep them away from certain drugs for the period of time they are behind bars. But jail is not a therapeutic experience that gets to the bottom of their condition. It is also true that jail may not even keep users away from drugs because illegal substances are routinely found circulating around prison populations. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, if substance abuse is not treated, the result is going to be negative social consequences. For the state of California, one study showed that when treatment was provided to drug offenders, crime in various communities actually went down.

Certainly, jail can be a scary place for some individuals who make mistakes and get sentenced to time behind bars. The time spent in jail could be enough for some to refrain from engaging in illegal activities again. But for a great many of the jailed population, the criminal history that they have makes it difficult to rejoin life as a productive member of society. Without other options, formerly incarcerated individuals often fall back into the same old habits of breaking the law. Furthermore, addicts who are not given proper treatment opportunities never have their disease addressed. These individuals will likely continue to use drugs. Continue reading

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