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Criminal Defense

Can I Legally Drive With My Trunk Open?

By Teo Spengler, J.D.

Many people occasionally drive their cars, trucks, or SUVs with the trunk open. This may or may not be legal, depending on the vehicle you are driving, the state you live in, and whether you are carrying cargo in the back of the truck.

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Illinois Says Police Interrogators Must Stop Lying to Minors

By Richard Dahl

Do police interrogators knowingly lie to minors to gain confessions that might be false? The answer, at least sometimes, appears to be yes. And now some states are taking steps to halt the practice. In July, the governors of Illinois and Oregon signed bills into law making their states the first to bar police from lying to minors during questioning. In New York, a similar bill would go even further, barring police interrogators from lying to anyone.

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Could Rioters' Defense Be: 'Trump Said It Was OK'?

By Richard Dahl

Let's say you know the police chief in your town and he tells you it's OK to park in a "No Parking" zone. Let's say that you do and when you come back to your car, there's a parking ticket tucked beneath your windshield wiper. If you would decide to contest the matter in traffic court, you might have a strong case. That's because you received permission from a "public authority" to do something that otherwise would be considered illegal.

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Did the Capitol Rioters Commit Sedition?

By Richard Dahl

In September, Attorney General William P. Barr reportedly told federal prosecutors that they should consider charging rioters in Portland and elsewhere with sedition. It's probably fair to say that when most of us think of sedition, words like “conspiracy” or “government overthrow” come to mind, so Barr's suggestion sounded like a reach. Many legal experts thought so too, including Andrew Napolitano, a former judge and Fox News commentator, who called it “a bridge too far.

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Difference Between First and Second Degree Murder?

By FindLaw Staff

Differences Between Murder Charges To help make sense of the degrees of murder, we're going to start with the most serious crime in the murder spectrum. We will also pinpoint exactly what differs between a first-, second-, and third-degree murder (or manslaughter) charge.

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What Happens If Your Criminal Case Is Suspended Because of a Pandemic?

By FindLaw Staff

As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads each day, many courtrooms are closing their doors to the public and postponing criminal cases. This is a situation that our country has not seen since the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, so many legal professionals and courts are making emergency plans as they go. During this time, it is very likely your case will face delays somewhere along the criminal justice process. What Parts of Criminal Cases Are Courts Suspending?

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