Many Louisianans work in professions where they control or have access to the finances of another. A corporate manager, for example, may be responsible for making large transactions on the company's behalf. When an audit discovers that money is missing, an individual in a position of power may be subjected to questioning and, eventually, criminal charges.
Being stopped by the police can be enough to set anyone's heart racing, even those who have done nothing wrong. A traffic stop can become even more stressful when a police officer suspects that an individual has been drinking and driving. A motorist may be asked to submit to field sobriety tests, the results of which could determine whether an individual faces DUI charges. One of these tests used in Louisiana is the horizontal gaze nystagmus test. "Nystagmus" refers to the involuntary jerking of one's eye, which can be exacerbated when an individual is under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Many New Orleans residents find themselves interacting with police officers for one reason or another. When those interactions are based on suspicion of criminal wrong-doing, an individual may find him or herself facing allegations of criminal wrongdoing. This can snowball, and what was once allegedly a minor crime can turn into something much more serious. Yet, no matter how damaging the situation may seem, individuals are innocent until proven guilty, and their legal rights are paramount. Any breach of those legal rights could lead to evidence suppression and either reduced charges, dropped charges, or acquittals. However, protecting those legal rights is entirely up to a criminal defendant.
A few weeks ago on the blog we discussed the penalties for convictions on drug charges. The severity of these penalties can vary greatly depending on the type and the amount of drugs involved, as well as what was being done with the drugs. For example, selling heroin will pose much harsher penalties than mere marijuana possession for personal use. Yet, despite the drug charges an individual may face, a conviction can severely damage his or her life. Prison, fines, and a tarnished record can threaten what could otherwise be a stellar personal and professional reputation. The effects can last for years, decades, or even a lifetime.
Not all states use ignition interlock devices, but Louisiana state law does give judges the power to assign them in DWI cases. The device is fairly simply in design: It forces you to essentially take a breath test before you can start your car, and it locks out the ignition system if alcohol is detected. Being forced to use this system is one of the biggest things to consider when facing such charges and formatting your defense. Below are five things you must know about ignition interlock laws within the state.
Louisianans who are facing DUI charges have a lot to think about. They may be overwhelmed by the mere thought of the potential penalties they may face, which might include a significant period of incarceration, a large fine, license suspension, license revocation, and damage to their personal and professional reputation. Accused individuals shouldn't let what might happen paralyze them into inaction. Instead, they need to do everything they can to put forth the best criminal defense they can in hopes of obtaining an acquittal.