Posts Tagged ‘New Orleans Criminal Defense’

New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney Granted AVVO Client’s Choice Award

Criminal Defense Attorney New Orleans

 

Elizabeth Bagert Carpenter — Attorney New Orleans

 

Criminal Defense Attorney Granted AVVO Client’s Choice Award

 

This is old news that we probably should have shared months ago.  Better late than never, I suppose.  Avvo.com awarded Attorney Elizabeth Bagert Carpenter the Client’s Choice award for 2012.  Being recognized in such a way is an honor, especially since Ms. Carpenter always aims to provide exceptional client services and regularly asks former clients to review her performance.

 

Avvo.com is an expert-only Q&A forum where people can ask legal questions of lawyers, for free.  The Q&A forum also includes an online directory of lawyers licensed in the United States. Avvo provides listings to which attorneys can submit their own profiles and histories. The listings may also include client reviews, disciplinary actions, and peer endorsements.

 

 

SUMMARY OF THE MULTIPLE OFFENDER LAW — Louisiana

Habitual Offender Criminal Attorney New Orleans

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. —  New Orleans Criminal Defense

 

If you are being charged of a crime as a Habitual Offender, Contact attorney Elizabeth B. Carpenter.  Our firm is ready to fight for your freedom.

 

SUMMARY OF THE MULTIPLE OFFENDER LAW  – La R.S. 15:529.1

 

The District Attorney may charge a person as a multiple or habitual offender after that person has been convicted of more than one felony.

A felony is any crime which is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor. Common felonies include theft and receiving stolen things valued over $300.00, nearly all crimes of violence and drug crimes, burglary, issuing worthless checks over $100.00, and many other crimes.

After the first felony conviction, the penalties for all subsequent felony convictions become much more severe. A prior conviction in any state or country may be considered if the crime would be a felony in committed in Louisiana.

 

Sentencing:

 

         On a second felony conviction (one prior conviction) the minimum penalty is ½ the maximum term of imprisonment applicable to a first offender; the maximum penalty is double the maximum term of imprisonment applicable to a first offender.

 

       On a third felony conviction (two prior convictions) the minimum penalty is 2/3 the maximum applicable to a first offender; the maximum penalty is double the maximum applicable to a first offender. However, if the last and two prior felony convictions were for crimes of violence OR sex crimes against a person under 18 OR drug crimes punishable by ten years or more OR any crimes punishable by twelve years or more, the sentence for the 3rd felony conviction is NATURAL LIFE imprisonment without parole.

 

         On a fourth or subsequent conviction (three prior convictions) the minimum penalty is twenty years at hard labor and the maximum penalty is NATURAL LIFE imprisonment without parole.

 

Noteworthy:

 

No conviction may be considered if the defendant has satisfied the 10 year cleansing period, beginning the date of release from actual custody or supervision by the Department of Corrections for probation, parole, or supervised good time, and ends on the date of the commission of the latest offense.

No sentence imposed under 15:529.1 may be suspended and the defendant may not be placed on probation. Most of these sentences are without reduction for good time.

 

In calculating whether a person is eligible for sentencing as an habitual offender, the sequence of offenses and convictions must be: commission of offense A, then conviction of offense A, then commission of offense B, then conviction of offense B, then commission of offense C, the conviction of offense C. Convictions on the same day for several district offenses committed in different incidents do NOT count as one conviction.  See: State v. Michael Johnson, 2003-2993 (La. 10/19/04), 884 So.2d 568.

 

Each prior conviction must have been with counsel or an expressed waiver of counsel, and there must have been a complete Boykinization. Prior adjudication as a multiple offender is not required.

Defendants convicted of certain crimes which became felonies due to repeat offender status may not me multiple billed (such as repeat offender theft, possession of marijuana, convicted felon with firearm). However, those convictions may be used as prior (predicate) offenses if subsequently the defendant is convicted of another felony.

 

 

Second Degree Cruelty to Juvenile — Louisiana

New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter — Criminal Attorney Contact 

 

Second Degree Cruelty to Juveniles — La RS 14:93.2.3

Second Degree Cruelty to juveniles is:

A.(1)  Second degree cruelty to juveniles is the intentional or criminally negligent mistreatment or neglect by anyone over the age of 17 to any child under the age of 17 which causes serious bodily injury or neurological impairment to that child.

(2)  For purposes of this Section, “serious bodily injury” means bodily injury involving protracted and obvious disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty, or substantial risk of death.

B.  The providing of treatment by a parent or tutor in accordance with the tenets of a well-recognized religious method of healing, in lieu of medical treatment, shall not for that reason alone be considered to be intentional or criminally negligent mistreatment or neglect and shall be an affirmative defense to a prosecution under this Section.

Penalties

Whoever commits the crime of second degree cruelty to juveniles shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than 40 years.

This offense is considered a Crime of Violence, therefore it is not expungeable.  However, it is a crime for which jail time is not mandatory — one may receive probation only.

 

Synthetic Drug 25I: A New Schedule I Drug

New Orleans Drug Crime Attorney

 

By Elizabeth B Carpenter — Criminal Defense Attorney New Orleans 

 

Elizabeth B Carpenter Law is a premier law firm for Drug Crime defense.  We have defended almost every type of Drug Crime imaginable in South Louisiana.   If you are in need of a New Orleans drug crime attorney, contact our office today.

 

 

 

Synthetic Drug 25I: A New Schedule I Drug

State health officials, top lawmakers and law enforcement personnel announce steps they have taken to ban a dangerous new drug, 25i, making it illegal in Louisiana.

This relatively new drug, 25i, also called Smiles or N-Bomb, has been added to the state’s Controlled Dangerous Substance Act, effective immediately.  It is classified as a Controlled Dangerous Substance — Schedule I.

Simple Possession of 25I will carry a sentence of 4 to 10 years.

Manufacturing and Distribution of 25I will carry a sentence of 5 to 50 years.

Lawmakers began eyeing criminalizing the drug after an Arkansas man died last week in New Orleans after reportedly overdosing on 25i at a festival.

At least five people have died nationwide this year after taking 25i, including the man who died in Louisiana, according to officials. Other deaths reportedly occurred in Minnesota, North Dakota, California and North Carolina.  Today, Louisiana becomes the second state, along with Virginia, to make 25i illegal.

Louisiana revised statute 40:962, gives State Health Officials authority to add new compounds as a Schedule I drug in the Controlled Dangerous Substance Act by rule if the substance has a high potential for abuse, has no currently accepted medical use in the U.S., and if there is no accepted safety use of the substance under medical supervision.

Officials said the synthetic drug is commonly manufactured in China and India, and is being sold in powder and liquid form online, which is how people access it in the United States.

 

Elizabeth B Carpenter — New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney

 

Court Says Child Porn Victims Can Get Restitution — New Orleans Child Pornography Attorney

New Orleans Child Pornography Attorney 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter Law is uniquely qualified to defend clients who have been accused of a child pornography offense in New Orleans area. We have represented countless clients in child pornography cases in Louisiana.  Some of the specific types of cases we address include the possession, production, possession, distribution or sale of child pornography in New Orleans. Our knowledge of the law and experience in child pornography defense gives us the skill you need to effectively challenge the allegations made against you.

 

 

 Court Says Child Porn Victims Can Get Restitution

 

Child pornography victims can recover money from people convicted of viewing their abuse without having to show a link between the crime and their injuries, a federal appeals court ruled Monday.

The decision conflicts with rulings by several other federal circuits, possibly setting the stage for a Supreme Court challenge.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a woman, identified as “Amy” in court documents, was entitled to restitution from Texas resident Doyle Randall Paroline and New Orleans resident Michael Wright, both of whom pleaded guilty in separate cases to possessing child pornography that included images of Amy.

Amy sought more than $3.3 million from Paroline to cover the cost of her lost income, attorneys’ fees and psychological care. A federal judge rejected her request.

Amy also sought more than $3.3 million from Wright, who had images of Amy and at least 20 other identifiable children stored on his computer. A federal judge ruled Wright owed Amy more than $500,000.

Wright argued he didn’t owe Amy any restitution because he didn’t obtain the images until years after she was abused. He also said there wasn’t any evidence that she knew he personally viewed the images.

Amy, now her early 20s and living in Pennsylvania, was a child when her uncle sexually abused her and widely circulated images of the abuse, according to court records. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children said it has found at least 35,000 images of Amy’s abuse in more than 3,200 child pornography cases since 1998.

In at least 174 cases, Amy has been awarded restitution in amounts ranging from $100 to more than $3.5 million. James Marsh, one of her attorneys, said in January that she had collected more than $1.5 million.

Nine of the 15 judges joined in the majority opinion written by Judge Emilio Garza. The opinion said a federal statute dictates that a child pornography victim be awarded restitution for the full amount of their losses in each defendant’s case.

“Fears over excessive punishment are misplaced,” Garza wrote. “… Ultimately, while the imposition of full restitution may appear harsh, it is not grossly disproportionate to the crime of receiving and possessing child pornography.”

“No other circuit that has addressed this issue has adopted such a one size fits all rule,” he wrote. “Other circuits have given the district courts discretion to assess the amount of the restitution the offender is ordered to pay.”

Stanley Schneider, one of Paroline’s attorneys, said they will ask the Supreme Court to review the ruling.

 

Contact

If you need a Child Pornography Defense Attorney in New Orleans, contact attorney Elizabeth B. Carpenter to schedule a consultation.  Early intervention by an experienced sex crime defense attorney can make a tremendous difference in your case.  We are here to help you, not judge you.

 

Harahan Seeks Cyber-Crimes Unit to Catch Online Sex Predators — New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney

Louisiana Sex Crime Computer Crime Defense Attorney

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. — New Orleans Criminal Defense

 

If you are being accused of a Sex Crime, Computer Crime, Internet Crime, it is imperative that you have a skilled, aggressive attorney by your side.  Contact Elizabeth B. Carpenter Law for a consultation.

 

 

Harahan Seeks Cyber-Crimes Unit to Catch Online Sex Predators

From the Times Picayune

Harahan moved Thursday night to establish its own cyber-crimes unit in the Police Department, hoping to catch online sexual predators who target children in the city of 9,277. The City Council voted 5-0 to request help setting up the unit from the Kenner Police Department, which started one in 2006.

Online solicitation of children in Harahan has not been known to be a problem, but Councilwoman Dana Huete said the potential is real. “With advanced technology now, our kids have iPads and iPhones, and we can’t always police what they’re doing,” said Huete, who sponsored the resolution.

Harahan has no money earmarked for the project, but Huete said it will seek a grant. Police Chief Mac Dickinson likely will assign an officer to work part-time on cyber-crime, she said.

Kenner police have made more than 50 arrests since starting their cyber-crimes unit six years ago, often using an officer posing online as an underaged girl. The suspects have been as near as Kenner and as far away as California and England, said Sgt. Robert McGraw, who staffs the Kenner unit.

“Just remember every time you’re child logs online, there are people all over the world looking to solicit them for sex,” he said.

 

The crime of “computer aided solicitation of a minor” became law in Louisiana on August 15, 2005.

The penalties for violating the computer-aided solicitation statute are severe. For a first offender, the sentencing guidelines require a mandatory minimum sentence of 2 years and a possible maximum of 10 years along with a fine of up to $10,000.  Whoever commits this crime must register as a sex offender.  The statute also specifically denies eligibility for probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

Whoever is convicted of the crime Computer-aided Solicitation of a Minor shall  Register as a Sex Offender for 25 years, to be conducted semi-annually.

 

 

If you or a loved one has been accused of a Sex Crime, you should contact a New Orleans Sex Crime Defense Attorney as soon as possible.   Elizabeth B. Carpenter Law.   Ms. Carpenter is dedicated to defending and protecting the rights of those accused of Sex Crimes.  We are here to help you, not judge you!

 

 

Can the Police Search My Car?

Drug Possession Distribution Attorney Louisiana


Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. — New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney
  

 

 

The Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects citizens against unreasonable searches. The amendment applies to government agents, like police officers. It does not apply to searches by private individuals. This protection extends to automobile searches, but it is not absolute. However, if a court finds that evidence was taken during an unlawful vehicle search, the court will not allow the prosecution to use that evidence.

 

Searches and Your Expectation of Privacy

A “search” can occur when a governmental agent intrudes in an area where you have a “reasonable expectation of privacy.” Deciding a “reasonable expectation of privacy” involves two questions. First, did you have an actual – meaning subjective or in your own mind – expectation of privacy? Second, would the subjective expectation of privacy be reasonable to an objective, uninvolved person?

 

Consent to Search

In certain situations, you may refuse to let a governmental agent search your vehicle. The agent is not required to inform you of your right to refuse. If you agree to the search, it must be voluntary – meaning you weren’t under pressure to comply. You also have the right to limit where the agent can search – the trunk but not the glove box, for example. You are free to change your mind at any time, even after the search has started.

 

Probable Cause to Search

A government agent with probable cause can search your car without you agreeing. Probable cause means a reason to believe the car more than likely contains evidence related to a crime. A routine traffic stop can develop into probable cause to search the vehicle. After pulling a car over for a traffic violation, a police officer might notice that the driver matches the description of someone suspected of stealing parts from automobiles. The officer also notices automobile parts in the back seat. These additional facts most likely create probable cause for the police officer to search the vehicle.

 

Search Incident to Lawful Arrest

When a police officer makes a lawful arrest, the officer may search not only the arrested person but also the area immediately around the arrested person – like the car the person was traveling in just before the arrest. However, this only applies if the person is arrested. If the driver is only given a traffic ticket, the police officer cannot search the vehicle. If a police officer has the choice to either issue a ticket or make an arrest, the officer must make the arrest in order to search the car.

 

The law surrounding searches of vehicles is complicated. Plus, the facts of each case are unique.

 

“The goal of every drug crime case is to not be convicted”

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. — New Orleans Criminal Lawyer

 

Elizabeth B Carpenter Law is one of the premiers law firms for Drug Crime defense.  We have defended almost every type of Drug Crime imaginable in South Louisiana.  When approaching a Drug Case, the first issues we examine are the client’s constitutional rights against unlawful search and seizure:

  • Did the police have the right to pull our client over?,

 

  • Did the police have the right to search our client’s home?,

 

  • Did the police have the right to search out client’s car?

 

Our first goal is to try to exclude / suppress any and all evidence of a drug crime.  If the evidence is suppressed, the state cannot use the evidence to convict our client.  The goal in every drug crime case is to not be convicted.

If you have been arrested for Drug Possession, contact our office for a consultation.  We want to protect your rights!

 

 

Supreme Court Declares Life Without Parole Unconstitutional — New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney

Criminal Defense Attorney New Orleans

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. – Serving clients in Orleans, Jefferson, Terrebonne, Tangipahoa, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. Tammany, St. John, Assumption and Plaquemines Parishes.

 

 

Life-without-parole sentences for juveniles declared unconstitutional by Supreme Court

The Times-Picayune

 

Life-without-parole sentences for juveniles are unconstitutional, according to a 5-4 opinionMonday morning from the U.S. Supreme Court that involved a 14-year-old convicted of murder in Alabama. Evan Miller was convicted of arson and murder in Lawrence County, but his life without any possibility of parole sentence violates the Constitutional protection against cruel and unusual punishment, according to the justices.

juvenile-court.JPG
Life-without-parole sentences for juveniles are unconstitutional, according to a 5-4 opinion Monday morning from the U.S. Supreme Court.

The opinion was written by Justice Elana Kagan. The ruling, which also includes a case from Arkansas, is another in a line of decisions that don’t allow the criminal justice system to give up hope that the youngest criminals can be rehabilitated.

“By requiring that all children convicted of homicide receive lifetime incarceration without possibility of parole, regard- less of their age and age-related characteristics and the nature of their crimes, the mandatory sentencing schemes before us violate this principle of proportionality, and so the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment,” according to the opinion that was just released this morning.

The Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth, which advocates for an end to lifetime mandatory sentences for youth, said that Louisiana has 332 youths serving life terms. That’s the third highest in the United States, behind only Michigan and Pennsylvania, according to the group.

“(The decision) will impact Louisiana significantly because we do have mandatory life sentences for juvenile offenses,” said Dana Kaplan, executive director of the Juvenile Justice Project of Louisiana. Kaplan, though, is reading the Supreme Court ruling, just out this morning, and says she’ll have a more thorough analysis later.

The four justices that dissented include Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Samuel Alito, Justice Clarence Thomas and Justice Antonin Scalia.

Cheating and Swindling — Louisiana

New Orleans White Collar Crime Defense Attorney

 

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. — White Collar Crime New Orleans

 

 Cheating and Swindling — La RS 14:67.18

A.  It shall be unlawful for any person who by any trick or sleight of hand performance, or by fraud or fraudulent scheme, cards, dice, or device, for himself or another, wins or attempts to win money or property or a combination thereof, or reduces a losing wager or attempts to reduce a losing wager, increases a winning wager or attempts to increase a winning wager in connection with gaming operations.

B.(1)  Whoever violates the provisions of this Section when the value of such money or property or combination thereof or reduced or increased wager amounts to a value of one thousand five hundred dollars or more shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than ten years, or may be fined not more than three thousand dollars, or both.

(2)  When the value of such money or property or combination thereof or reduced or increased wager amounts to a value of five hundred dollars or more, but less than a value of one thousand five hundred dollars, the offender shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than five years, or may be fined not more than two thousand dollars, or both.

(3)  When the value of such money or property or combination thereof or reduced or increased wager amounts to less than a value of five hundred dollars, the offender shall be imprisoned for not more than six months, or may be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or both. If the offender in such cases has been convicted of cheating and swindling two or more times previously, upon any subsequent conviction he shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than two years, or may be fined not more than two thousand dollars, or both.

 

Facing an indictment for a white collar crime is one of the most difficult experiences one could possibly endure. In addition to whatever consequences a conviction might bring, including prison time and permanent felony conviction on your record, a white collar crime charge can do lasting damage to your reputation and tear apart your family, even if you are not convicted. Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Law understands the stress that you are experiencing. Our job is to minimize any potential damage to your future and protect your rights.

Fraudulent Portrayal of a Law Enforcement Officer or Firefighter — Louisiana

New Orleans Criminal Defense Attorney

 

Elizabeth B. Carpenter, Esq. — New Orleans Premiere Criminal Defense Attorney


Serving Clients in Orleans Parish, St. Tammany Parish, St. John Parish, St. James Parish, St. Bernard Parish, St. Charles Parish, Assumption Parish, Tangipahoa Parish, Terrebonne Parish, Plaquemines Parish and Jefferson Parish.

 

Fraudulent Portrayal of a Law Enforcement Officer or Firefighter — 14:112.2

Fraudulent portrayal of a law enforcement officer or firefighter is the impersonation of any law enforcement officer or firefighter for the purpose of obtaining access to a public building, facility, or service.  The fraudulent portrayal includes but is not limited to any of the following:

(1)  Portraying or impersonating a law enforcement officer or firefighter by any means.

(2)  Possessing, without authority, any uniform or badge by which a law enforcement officer or firefighter is identified.

(3)  Performing any act purporting to be official while portraying a law enforcement officer or firefighter.

(4)  Making, altering, possessing, or using a false document or document containing false statements which purports to be a training program certificate or in-service training certificate or other documentation issued by the Council on Peace Officer Standards and Training, pursuant to R.S. 40:2405, which certifies the peace officer has successfully completed the requirements necessary to exercise his authority as a peace officer.

(5)  Making, altering, possessing, or using any false documents or credentials which purport to identify the person as a law enforcement officer or firefighter.

For the purposes of this Section, “law enforcement officer or firefighter” shall include police officers, sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, marshals, deputy marshals, correctional officers, constables, wildlife enforcement agents, state park wardens, firemen, and probation and parole officers.

 ”Access to a public building, facility, or service” includes but is not limited to the following:

(1)  Free and unhampered passage on and over toll bridges and ferries in this state.

(2)  Free passage on and over the Crescent City Connection Bridge at New Orleans.

(3)  Free passage on any tollway as defined in R.S. 48:2021(17).

(4)  Free parking at any parking facility owned by the state or any of its political subdivisions.

(5)  Free admission or reduced price admission to any entertainment, cultural, or sporting event.

Whoever commits the crime of fraudulent portrayal of a law enforcement officer or firefighter shall be fined not more than $1,000.00 dollars or imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than 2 years, or both.