Articles Posted in Criminal Defense

Domestic violence charges can result from a wide array of actions. In California, the most common domestic violence charges are filed when one party physically harms another with whom they were intimate at some point. This type of corporal or physical punishment between intimate parties can have criminal implications if reported to law enforcement. Domestic violence charges in California can be at the felony or misdemeanor level.

Being arrested for domestic violence, even if you are not charged, can greatly damage your reputation and negatively impact your life for the long term. Such accusations can tear families apart and even have professional ramifications. Guarding yourself against domestic violence charges is incredibly important. If you were arrested for a domestic violence incident in the greater San Diego area, the San Diego domestic violence attorney at the Law Offices of David M. Boertje offers effective and strategic legal defense services that may help you secure the best possible outcome for your case.

Basics of Domestic Abuse in California 

Domestic violence is not just restricted to adult men; people of all genders and ages have the potential to harm a loved one. Also, abuse happens in every environment including those that are rural, in the city, or in the suburbs. Additionally, no one race is immune from domestic violence nor is any income level. 

The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence reports that as many as 20 people every minute will be a victim of domestic abuse in the United States. This means that over 10 million people annually will be the victims of abuse.

There are several contributing factors common in many domestic abuse situations: 

  • People who have witnessed abuse as a child can come to believe that is how to interact with others. 
  • Being a victim of abuse at some point in a person’s life can lead them to be abusive, too.
  • As a matter of routine, a couple may go through the progressions and stages of violence, cycling from calm to intense rage.
  • Individuals experiencing certain mental health issues may act out violently. Schizophrenia, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder are a few examples.
  • Drug and alcohol use can cause a person to act differently when they have a substance in their system than they would if they were sober.
  • A person who was raised without examples and guidance on proper values may translate into an adult that is also unable to judge what is acceptable and what is not.

Every domestic abuse situation is unique, and the contributing factors will vary from couple to couple. 

If you are struggling with managing your anger, understanding why can make all the difference. There are programs and supportive resources that can help you cope with your internal strife. Looking at root causes and putting efforts toward getting better and changing behavior can not only keep you and your partner together in a healthy relationship, but it can also improve your overall quality of life. It can also keep you out of trouble with the law. Continue reading

Wisconsin has been the center of media attention and unrest with the recent verdict of the Kyle Rittenhouse case followed by the Christmas parade that was terrorized by a motorist. According to reports, Darrel Brooks was charged with an attack on parade-goers who were attending a Christmas parade in Waukesha, WI. As a result of his arrest, he was held on bail at $5 million. On Tuesday, November 23, Brooks came to his first court appearance. 

What Was the Aftermath of the Massacre in Waukesha?

It has been reported that as a result of allegedly driving his car into a Christmas parade in Waukesha, WI, Darrel Brooks killed at least six people and injured 62 individuals. The state of Wisconsin does not have a statute for the death penalty, but each person who succumbed to their injuries will count toward a homicide charge. In Wisconsin, homicide can be life in prison with no potential for parole.

Brooks was stated to have a long criminal record before the incident in Waukesha took place. Even with police barricades set up, Brooks is said to have driven his car through the crowd that came to see the Christmas parade and participate in it. Two officers attempted, unsuccessfully, to stop the vehicle from mowing down the crowd. The vehicle that Brooks used was a red Ford Escape SUV.

When seen in his first court appearance, it was noted that Brooks appeared regretful and sad about his actions. Authorities have mentioned that the incident did not appear to be a terroristic threat.

Because his bail is so high, it is not expected that he will be able to pay it, and because of this, he is going to stay behind bars. Should a conviction happen, the most likely result is life in prison. 

There is no doubt that Darrel Brooks has a tall hill to climb to overcome his charges. While his case is egregious in nature, he still deserves his day in court. Having a smart and skilled legal defense may secure the best possible outcome. Often, the quality and experience of a person’s legal counsel are what makes the difference between the harshest penalties and those that are more sustainable.

If you have been charged with homicide in California, you may face many years behind bars if not life, and extremely high fines. Also, it is possible that victims’ families may bring civil suits against you and that can come with a hefty price tag if they win their case. The aftermath of a murder charge in California is very serious and can be life-altering. Having the right legal defense representing your best interests can be pivotal to how your case turns out. Continue reading

If you were issued a restraining order in California, you are required to follow the guidelines set forth in that decree. Violations of these legal pronouncements are a crime, and because of this, jail time and fines could be the end result.

It is best to get in touch with a San Diego criminal defense attorney as soon as you can once charges are made that you violated your restraining order terms. The best way to counter your charges is to get a talented and knowledgeable legal professional on the case and in a position to best protect your interests. David M. Boertje is a San Diego criminal defense lawyer who has helped countless individuals facing criminal legal challenges overcome their situation and secure the best possible outcome. David M. Boertje can assist you with your specific legal predicament.

What Punishments Can Result From a California Restraining Order Violation?

Prostitution is illegal in the state of California. Despite this, it is possible that if a person is arrested for prostitution, they may not be prosecuted. It is not just the person selling prostitution services who can be arrested and charged with crimes, the buyer of such services can also be arrested. “Johns” may also face harsh criminal penalties if convicted of soliciting sex services.

If you have been arrested for a sex crime, either selling or soliciting sex services, you will need a skilled criminal defense attorney protecting your interests. Since law enforcement engages in sting operations to identify sex workers, but mainly their customers, being caught engaging in these illegal acts can have devastating results. Working with a San Diego sex crime defense attorney improves your chances of overcoming your charges and getting the most favorable results.

How Do Prosecution Stings Happen in San Diego?

Police officers in San Diego who are tasked with finding prostitution activities go undercover in many different ways including:

  • Posing as a prostitute on websites, chat rooms, social media, and other online forums.
  • Renting venues that are commonly associated with sex solicitors. Massage parlors are common.

Prostitution stings in San Diego have the main goal of identifying the people who are looking for sex services and willing to pay for them. If you are arrested for solicitation of sex services in San Diego and convicted, you can spend months in jail and pay heavy fines. With multiple solicitation arrests, you may be subject to an extended jail sentence.

It is necessary that the authorities show that a defendant had the intent to engage in a sexual act with another party and that there would be a transaction of some form of compensation for the sex. One defense available to a defendant is that they have been the victim of entrapment. Entrapment by police is different from simply being caught in a sting. If entrapment exists, it can make for a strong defense against solicitation charges.

Entrapment happens when a person is forced into committing a crime they had no prior desire to  commit. For example, if it can be shown that a defendant was tricked, intimidated, pressured, or was on the receiving end of other forceful acts to get them to pay for sex services, this would be considered entrapment. 

Law enforcement largely goes after solicitors more so than prostitutes themselves. This is because it is believed that if the demand for sex services is eliminated, the supply will disappear. Also, there is some belief that it is improper to punish someone for offering sex-related services. Amnesty International, for instance, believes that all sex services, both buying, and selling should be decriminalized.

Still, in some cases, prostitutes themselves are arrested and people who are shown to be their pimps can also be arrested. Continue reading

You teach your child to avoid danger and to protect themselves when appropriate. You also teach them not to start fights or try to hurt other people. It can be quite confusing for kids. Across the country, fights and other violent acts are taking place in schools. The causes of these incidents can vary, but it is nonetheless a serious problem for all of us. 

In some situations, a person may engage in violence as a result of trying to defend themselves against physical harm by another party. If self-defense can be shown, the legal criminal implications will be much less than if the aggressive actions were intentional and unprovoked.

If your child was involved in a physical altercation in which law enforcement had to intercede, it is best to connect with an experienced criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. If you believe that your child was the victim of an attack and acted in self-defense, it will take a proficient and knowledgeable legal professional to help make the case. David M. Boertje is a San Diego criminal defense attorney who can help your family should your child find themselves facing criminal charges.

Can Minors Plead Self-Defense?

When it comes to physical violence, there is assault and then there is the battery. California’s assault and battery definitions are not the same. The two are quite different. Assault happens when a person has the ability to inflict harm and attempts to inflict harm on another person. For example, if a person tries to push another party but no harm was inflicted, it can still be considered assault.

By contrast, battery takes place when someone attempts to harm another party and succeeds. So if the damage inflicted on another party did cause injuries and harm, then the crime would no longer be assault but rather elevated to battery.

When an adult is facing an assault and/or battery charge, they will be processed in the criminal justice system. The result is likely going to be some severity of punishment in the form of prison time and potentially a costly fine. Not to mention, the blemish on the person’s record will reflect poorly on them when they try to get a job, apply for a loan, or take part in other life opportunities.

For juveniles, though, the case is likely to be adjudicated in the juvenile court system. The main difference between the criminal justice system and the juvenile court system is that the former relies on punitive actions while the latter emphasizes rehabilitation.

As long as a young person under the age of 18 did not commit an egregious act that warrants the adult criminal justice system, they can get a second chance in the juvenile system. Though, if your child is convicted of assault or battery, their school may take action such as expulsion due to zero-tolerance rules. This is why having a skilled criminal defense lawyer advocating for your child is so critically important. Continue reading

The statute of limitations for a crime is the length of time that a person can be charged with committing that crime. If the statute of limitations has passed, and no criminal charges have been made, prosecutors may try to still apply criminal charges. However, an experienced attorney will be able to defend against such actions if charges are brought about after the statute of limitations has expired.

When a crime is committed, law enforcement will investigate the incident. When the perpetrator or perpetrators of the crime are unknown, the police will be looking for a person of interest who may have committed the offense. 

Even if you are not an official person of interest, law enforcement may be an ongoing presence in your life. It is normal to feel distressed, anxious, and uneasy if your life is constantly being scrutinized by law enforcement. 

Similarly, if you were arrested for a crime, but the prosecution did not charge you, you would be let go. However, the prosecution may still believe that you have a connection to the crime, and if they want to charge you, they will keep on your case. This too is a perplexing and upsetting position for anyone.

When Does the Time Run Out for Law Enforcement to Charge Individuals With Crimes?

The classification of crime, whether a felony or misdemeanor, will impact the duration of time in which a prosecutor can bring charges. Once the police establish that a crime has taken place, the statute of limitation begins to toll. In California, misdemeanor crimes typically have a one-year statute of limitations, while felonies have three years. There are some deviations from this general rule, in which the statute of limitations has different time frames:

  • Assault and battery misdemeanors have one year while felonies have three years.
  • Theft crimes in San Diego are one year for misdemeanors and three for felonies.
  • Fraud of public money and any crime that has the death penalty, life in prison, or life in prison without parole have no statute of limitations.
  • Forcible rape has no statute of limitations.
  • Violent or forceful rape of a spouse has no statute of limitations.
  • Murder has no statute of limitations.
  • Gang rape has no statute of limitations.
  • Treason has no statute of limitations.
  • Aggravated kidnapping has no statute of limitations.
  • Felonies, where at least eight years or more behind bars can be assessed, have a six-year statute of limitations.
  • Making child pornography or not registering as a sex offender when a conviction exists has a 10-year statute of limitations.
  • Elder abuse has a five-year statute of limitations.
  • Various forms of fraud can have a four-year statute of limitations.
  • Medical professionals who have committed sexual crimes against their patients have a two-year statute of limitations.

Continue reading

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. 

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.

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