Areas of Practice
Domestic violence and domestic abuse crimes cases vary and can include any of the following:
- Assault and Battery
- Criminal Trespass
- Reckless Endangerment
- Restraining Order Violations
- Sexual Assault
- Spousal Rape
- False Imprisonment
Almost all of the above charges can be filed as felonies or misdemeanors, creating the possibility of the defendant being sent to either county jail or state prison. Therefore, it is important for everyone involved in a domestic violence or domestic abuse case to know that once the police are called, the complaining party does not have the ability to “not press charges” or ask the police or the prosecutor to drop the charges. In fact, once the police are called out to a situation of domestic violence, the police will arrest someone if there is any sign of an injury, such as a bruise or skin discoloration. The complaining party becomes the alleged victim, and the prosecutor solely determines whether to file charges.
Juveniles in the state of California can be charged with virtually any crime that an adult can be charged with, and depending on the nature of the crime, he or she may be tried in juvenile or adult court. However, the penalties associated with a juvenile conviction are different. The primary goal of the juvenile justice system is treatment and rehabilitation, so juveniles convicted of a crime may face penalties such as:
- Treatment programs
- Community supervision
In addition, schools have the authority to suspend or expel juvenile students who commit crimes on school property.
Three strikes crimes
The “Three strikes” laws in California are the toughest in the country. In many states, similar repeat offender laws target those convicted of violent or serious crimes on three separate occasions, mandating harsher penalties for the second and third convictions.
However, in California, any felony conviction for a crime of any kind, even simple theft, can trigger the “three strikes” law. More than half of inmates serving sentences for a third felony conviction under California law were convicted of a non-violent felony offense or a charge that the district attorney could have filed as a misdemeanor rather than a felony.
If you are facing a criminal charge such as:
- Drug possession
—and you already have a felony conviction, you must consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Your liberty is at stake.
Drug crimes include a variety of offenses such as:
- Drug possession
- Drug dealing, distribution or trafficking
- Drug manufacturing
The charges filed, misdemeanor or felony, typically depend on a number of factors, such as the type and amount of the drug in question and whether minors were involved, for example.
Illegal and Controlled Substances
If you are charged with the illegal possession, distribution or manufacturing of any of the following drugs, you could face serious penalties including, but not limited to, fines, prison time, and probation:
- Cocaine, including crack cocaine
- Methamphetamine (crystal meth)
- OxyContin or other prescription opiates
If you have been charged with:
- Accidental death
it’s important to seek legal counsel to discuss your options. An experienced defense attorney can help you plan a course of action so your case has the best possible outcome.
White Collar Crimes
White-collar crime is a broad term used to describe crimes committed by individuals of a certain social status such as business professionals. Fraud is perhaps the most common type of white-collar crime, but the following crimes fall into this category as well:
- Tax evasion
The government does not look kindly on white-collar crimes and a conviction on any of the above or similar charges can result in:
- Permanent Criminal Record
Driving under the influence, or DUI, is an offense that is prosecuted vigorously in Los Angeles County. An individual charged with DUI faces penalties that may include:
- Suspended or revoked driver’s license
- Community service
- Mandatory substance abuse counseling
- Jail time
DUI charges, both misdemeanor and felony, should always be taken seriously. If you have been charged with DUI, you need someone who will defend your legal rights and maximize your interests.
Rape and Sexual Assualt
Sex crimes are among the most vigorously prosecuted in the state of California and a conviction can lead to mandatory, lifetime registration as a sex offender, probation, prison time and fines, among other things.
If you have been charged with:
- Sexual assault
- Rape (including forcible, spousal, date or statutory rape
- Indecent exposure
- Child pornography
—or another sex crime, it’s important to seek legal counsel to discuss your options. An experienced defense attorney can help you plan a course of action so your case has the best possible outcome.
An individual charged with a violent crime in the state of California is looking at penalties that may include fines, heavy prison time, and even the death penalty. If you have been charged with:
—or some other violent crime, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side.
How an Attorney Can Help
It is always wise to have skilled counsel by your side if you are facing criminal charges. At the law office of James P. Cooper III, PLC, the attorneys can help you:
- Provide valuable legal guidance and support
- Conduct an investigation on your behalf
- Interview witnesses
- Negotiate with prosecutors
- Argue your case before a judge or jury
- File an appeal, if necessary