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Lynchburg Criminal Defense Blog

What are forms of cybercrime?

Given how much time Virginia college students spend on the internet, cybercrime is bound to be a concern. In fact, according to the VoIP Shield website, cybercrime is projected to cost as much as $6 trillion globally by the year 2021. Cybercrime takes many forms, and chances are you or someone you know has been a victim of at least one form of it.

Hacking into computers is a form of cybercrime that is commonly reported on. The aim of hackers is to breach into the computer system of a company or another party to gain important information and data. Hacking comes in many forms, but is generally aimed at corporations and government computers.

How to fight a DUI charge

It's best to never drink and drive. Not only can this lead you to legal trouble, but it also increases your chance of being part of a motor vehicle accident that results in injury or death to you and/or others.

Unfortunately, people make mistakes that can have serious consequences. If you're charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, it's important to learn more about your legal rights and the steps you can take to defend yourself.

What are the consequences of fraud in Virginia?

Fraud is a crime in Virginia. If you were convicted of or if you were to plead guilty to charges involving fraudulent acts, you would likely have to deal with the same issues as any other similar convict in the state.

There is a range of offenses in this category in state law, however. In fact, some of the infractions currently on the books may seem to you to be less than serious. Regardless of your perception of the validity of the charge, it is usually wise to approach any and every criminal accusation with sobriety and diligence.

What happens during a sobriety checkpoint?

The most wonderful time of the year for many Virginia residents entails celebration and merriment. Whether you are driving home from the office holiday party or after enjoying egg nog at a friend’s home, you might encounter a sobriety checkpoint at some time during the next few weeks. This is not unusual during the holiday season, when drinking is heavier than usual.

Sobriety checkpoints are utilized in many states to assist law enforcement in curtailing drunk driving, explains FindLaw. What exactly is a DUI checkpoint, you might wonder? Unlike a normal traffic stop, where an officer needs to have a reason to pull you over, drivers are randomly stopped at checkpoints and subjected to sobriety tests.

How a DUI conviction can negatively impact your life

At the law offices of Mark B. Arthur PC in Virginia, we know that a DUI charge represents one of the most serious vehicle-related charges you can face. If convicted, not only do you face the possibility of substantial jail time and payment of a large fine, the conviction can haunt you for years to come.

As FindLaw explains, any conviction on your record, including that of a DUI, can negatively impact your employment prospects. If you are a college or post-graduate student who will apply for a professional license after graduation, the licensing board could refuse to issue you a license to practice in your chosen field based on a DUI conviction. In addition, prospective employers could decline to employ you once they find the conviction on your record.

What role do ignition interlocks have in Virginia?

Drunk driving convictions in Virginia can lead to an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle. There are several things to know about these contraptions and the requirements of the program. Making sure that you are in compliance can prevent you from facing more legal issues.

The ignition interlock program is overseen by the Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP), but the device installation and monitoring are handled by private companies. When you are required to have it installed, you have 30 days from the date on the order. Here is some important information about ignition interlocks:

Va. orthodontist files embezzlement suit against former employee

Misappropriation of funds in small increments over a long period of time is one form that embezzlement can take. A woman accused of embezzling more than $400,000 while employed as the manager of an orthodontist's office in Virginia now faces a civil lawsuit from her former employer after pleading no contest to embezzlement charges.

The office manager's former employer, an orthodontist in Roanoke, Virginia, has filed a civil lawsuit against her former office manager for punitive damages in the amount of $500,000 and compensatory damages of $850,000. This comes after the former office manager pleaded no contest to four felony counts of embezzlement. In November, the court indicted the 43-year-old woman on 10 counts of embezzlement, but following her no contest plea, she saw the remaining six of the charges against her dropped.

What does battery mean?

Emotions tend to run high for Virginia college students, and heightened emotions can lead to a fight, especially if alcohol is a factor. If you become involved in a physical altercation, you may face battery charges. However, according to FindLaw, battery encompasses a much wider range of offenses than just physical violence.

Boiled down to its most basic definition, a battery consists of unwanted, nonconsensual physical contact with another person. A battery may be sexual in nature, such as fondling or groping another person without his or her consent. Many batteries are violent, but the court may deem an act of unwanted physical contact a battery even if it was not violent in nature. 

Officers rewarded for DUI arrests

Residents in Virginia who have either personally been arrested for suspected driving under the influence or who know someone who has been charged with this type of offense may have a lot of questions about these cases. These questions may well start with how the decision to pull a driver over in the first place is made. Some people even wonder if law enforcement officers are given quotes for how many DUI arrests they must make in a given period of time.

While it is not known for sure if police departments or other units issue actual quotas for DUI arrests or any other type of arrest, what is known is that offers can receive special recognition for placing as many people as possible under arrest for alleged drunk driving. WSLS 10 News recently reported on a ceremony that was held by Mothers Against Drunk Driving in which numerous officers were celebrated for their high number of DUI arrests.

Are breath test devices accurate?

If you have ever been pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, you may have been asked to submit to a roadside breath test. Law enforcement officers often use this method to read your blood alcohol content in order to determine whether you are driving while intoxicated. The problem lies in the fact that handheld breath test devices do not always provide accurate and reliable results. The results obtained from these machines may even lead to a DUI conviction.

Rather than measure how much alcohol is in your blood through a blood test, breath test devices evaluate an exhaled breath sample to get a blood alcohol level reading. Research from the State University of New York at Potsdam shows that the BAC level obtained from a breath test device can vary by as much as 15 percent from the BAC level reading obtained by an actual blood test. Approximately 23 percent of people may show erroneous elevated readings from these devices.

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