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Newport News Criminal Law Blog

Virginia's drug courts handle cocaine cases

Virginia has specific laws pertaining to the use and distribution of cocaine, a Schedule II drug. This illegal drug may not be purchased or distributed in the state. If you possess it, you can face up to a year in jail and a financial penalty of $2,500. If you sell it, the penalty could include a sentence as long as life in prison.

Thankfully, Virginia does recognize the importance of alternatives to prison for drug offenders. As such, there are drug treatment courts that help nonviolent drug offenders obtain probation while seeking addiction treatment. Those who participate in the program must be monitored by probation officers, but even if there is a relapse, that doesn't necessarily mean probation has been violated. The goal is to help individuals get back on their feet and to live a drug-free lifestyle instead of placing them in prison where they are taken out of society without treatment.

Grandparents can play a positive role during a divorce

When children go through a divorce, it's difficult for them. They have to adjust to new situations and may have their lives uprooted. They might find themselves in new homes or living alone with a mother or father and unable to see the other parent.

As a grandparent to a grandchild going through this, you want to help. There are, fortunately, some things you can do to help your grandchild adjust. Your relationship is special, because you aren't involved in the divorce directly. Your grandchild may feel more comfortable talking to you, which can help him or her vent frustrations and worries.

How can you get through Thanksgiving custody issues?

Divorce can make holidays difficult for your family. You might want to have your children for Christmas, for example, but be unable to because of your custody arrangements. Fortunately, there are ways for you to handle the holidays, so you and your children get the most out of them.

One major concern among parents during the holidays is that they aren't seeing their children on the actual date of holiday itself. Some worry that this may influence their children negatively or that it makes them look like they're bad parents. The truth couldn't be further from that. Parents who take time to have holiday events on different days and who are willing to compromise are teaching their children problem-solving skills to handle difficult situations.

Rose McGowan believes charges are meant to silence her

Imagine knowing something horrible about someone but being unable to say anything for fear of repercussions. When you finally do get the nerve to speak out, you coincidentally find yourself the center of a criminal case. That might be what's happening in this case.

If you're familiar with the actress Rose McGowan, you may be surprised to know that she has a warrant out for her arrest in Virginia. According to the news from Oct. 27, the woman was traveling by plane and left her luggage on her flight at Washington Dulles International Airport. The authorities claim that her luggage tested positive for narcotics, but she doesn't believe this is an honest finding.

Do the holidays promote more drunk driving?

It's no secret that the holidays bring out the booze. Family members that many people don't see often come into town for the holiday, and that makes it a time for celebration. With so many holidays coming up soon, it's important to understand how drinking could end up affecting you if you choose to get behind the wheel and drive. Since there is an increase in the number of people on the roads, drinking and driving is more likely to result in a crash and could lead to serious injuries or fatalities.

The night before Thanksgiving is called "Blackout Wednesday," because many people arrive at their destinations and begin to party with friends and family. Since most people don't work on Thanksgiving Day, they may drink more than usual. This sets people up for making mistakes, and those mistakes could take lives.

A guardian ad litem protects children's rights

A guardian ad litem is a person appointed by the court to represent a minor during proceedings. For example, a minor whose family is going through a difficult divorce may have his or her own representative who looks out for his or her best interests.

The guardian ad litem can be anyone, but the courts generally appoint those who are close relatives of the children in question. It's possible for an attorney to represent the child, too. The court does have the right to appoint anyone as the child's guardian ad litem.

Parental alienation has 2 sides and can result in a struggle

Parental alienation syndrome is a serious problem in some child custody cases. Parental alienation is a situation where one parent believes that the other has turned his or her children against him or her as a result of the custodial parent's indoctrination and manipulation. Parents who believe their children are becoming alienated from them may accuse the other of telling their children lies or taking actions to make the child reject the noncustodial parent.

Not all accusations of parental alienation are true, but it's vital that the court takes them seriously. Children who suffer this abuse long enough could reject the parents who aren't in their lives and struggle with the ability to accept them back into their lives if the parental alienation is discovered. Many children in that position end up needing therapy to overcome the lies and dishonesty they've faced.

Man charged for death of 1 in single-vehicle crash

When you're accused of a DUI, it's in your best interests to defend yourself regardless of the situation. Even if you are in an accident that results in a death, you still have rights and need to protect your interests. While it's appropriate to feel remorse, you don't need to give in to the harshest penalties.

Take for instance this case involving a man in Virginia. The man from Poquoson has been charged in a fatal DUI collision. The news reports that the 23-year-old man was involved in a crash on Sept. 17 at around 3:30 a.m. At that time, he was heading east on Interstate 64.

Men facing false allegations of abuse need to protect themselves

As a man, you know that when you do something a woman doesn't like, she may be able to make allegations against you. You may be worried that your spouse will make allegations of domestic abuse against you since you've asked for a divorce. You know the relationship is volatile, and this was a risk you had to take to get out of the situation.

If this is the case, it's important to talk to your attorney about your fears of being falsely accused of domestic violence. To be convicted, there would need to be evidence, but an allegation can hurt you all the same. It can put pressure on you to do as your spouse wishes and could hurt your reputation in court enough to damage your divorce settlement if you're not careful.

Aggravated malicious wounding is a serious charge in any case

As someone accused of malicious wounding, it's vital that you understand exactly what that means. This is a serious allegation that could land you in prison. It is a felony in most cases, and it can ruin your reputation and stain your record.

Aggravated malicious wounding includes stabbing, cutting or causing bodily injury with the intent to disable or kill. If someone is accused and found guilty of this, he or she is guilty of a Class 2 felony if the victim suffers an injury and permanent or significant impairments. Those who maim pregnant women with the intent to kill, disfigure, maim or cause the involuntary termination of her pregnancy are guilty of a Class 2 felony as well if she is injured or suffers a significant impairment. The termination of a pregnancy due to an attack is considered to be a severe injury and significant physical impairment in Virginia.

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