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Eleanor Miller’s Answers

75 total


  • My son received a letter from Ga dept of corrections that he is in violation of his probation. Does he need to get a lawyer?

    He was sentenced to be on probation for 5 yrs. with two different probations. One, he has paid in full. The other one was a non report and just send whatever he could send. This letter he received by mail shows that he has vilated the second pro...

    Eleanor’s Answer

    I suspect that your son was either misinformed, or misinformed you. He needs a competent criminal defense lawyer immediately.

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  • Is it normal for my attorney to not go with me to an initial appearance in court?

    My lawyer says he is not going to be attending my initial appearance in court. I thought a lawyer was always supposed to go to court with you.

    Eleanor’s Answer

    If your attorney has a good reason for not being able to attend (another, more serious court appearance with another client for example), then he should arrange to have an attorney from his firm or another attorney attend with you. It is inappropriate to send a client to court alone, once you have been retained (or appointed).

    I agree with the others. Find someone new.

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  • Should this deserve a jury trial?

    Charged with M1 disorderly conduct, M1 assault, M3 trespassing, city court, bench trial. Defendant is a green card holder with restrictions (2 year temporary green card), in the process of removing the status and become 10 year green card holder. ...

    Eleanor’s Answer

    None of the charges you mention are jury eligible in AZ. Did you (if you represented yourself) or your attorney make any kind of objection when the judge made the racist comments? It would have been a good time to ask for a mistrial and notice the judge for cause. However, even if you didn't, you might be able to convince the appellate court (which is superior court for your purposes) that it was "fundamental error," i.e., the kind of error which precluded you from having a fair trial.

    I truly hope that you had an attorney, and I would suggest that, whether you did or did not, you consult with an immigration attorney. Depending on the underlying facts of the offenses, you may still have deportable problems, especially with the assault.

    The sentences do not matter for purposes of a jury trial. The court doesn't have the authority to "stack" misdemeanor sentences to any sentence over 6 months. Neither do the
    immigration consequences. However, if you had an attorney who did not advise you of the immigration consequences for convictions on these charges, and you would have taken a plea agreement if you'd known those consequences, you may have a shot at a petition for post-conviction relief, based upon the attorney's failure to advise you when you were making that decision.

    I suggest you consult immediately with a good, competent defense attorney as well as an immigration attorney -- or have the defense attorney do that for you. Your stay in this country may count on it.

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  • Are witness statements supposed to be shown to anyone other than law enforcement prior to charges being filed?

    I am trying to find out if statements made by "alleged victim" in a criminal investigation can legally be shown to public figures by the investigating detective before charges are formally filed?

    Eleanor’s Answer

    I don't practice in IN, but I suspect that there may be some law concerning public records (and non-public records) which might answer this question. I suggest you contact an attorney in IN.

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  • Should i get a public defender?

    if i do get supoena and i go to court...do i have to anwser the questions that the prosecutor asks me? what would happen if i refuse to answer? i have never been in trouble in my life..what's the worst that can happen or least?? Additional i...

    Eleanor’s Answer

    A subpoena is a court order. If you fail to obey it, the court could issue a warrant for your arrest.

    If you are called (by subpoena) to be a witness at a hearing or trial, and the questions you are asked might incriminate you in some crime, you must tell the judge that, and ask that an attorney be appointed to represent you.

    If, on the other hand, the questions and answers will NOT incriminate you in a crime, you must answer the questions.

    As the previous attorney instructed, if you are on the stand and refuse to answer after a judge orders you to do so, even if you have said you are afraid of incriminating yourself, you must answer the questions truthfully, or the court may hold you in contempt.

    Your fear of incriminating yourself must, of course, be real. You cannot pretend or use that as an excuse if it isn't true. However, most judges in Maricopa County will, if they believe there is a real threat of incrimination, will appoint a lawyer to represent you on that issue alone.

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  • How can i go about getting my sons charges reversed

    My son was convicted of child molestation.He sat in county jail for 20 months befor he was convicted. His lawyer had written evidence that the girls had not been touched. But in his interogation he admitted to bathing the girls, and that was the e...

    Eleanor’s Answer

    I would suggest speaking with a competent criminal defense attorney who did not represent your son and who does post conviction relief. I do not practice in OK, so I do not even know if there is a post conviction relief avenue there. However, I suspect there is, and if your son's attorney did or did not do something which fell below the standards AND it prejudiced your son's case, a good post conviction relief attorney can tell you whether there is a way to assist your son.

    Of course, if OK doesn't have such a proceeding, there may not be a way to help him at the state level.

    Good luck.

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  • Can I have my possession charges dropped because the policeman pulled me over and ticketed me for a brake light that was not out

    i was told my brake light was out and it was not. then he asked to search my car and said he would call the k9 unit. for no reason.

    Eleanor’s Answer

    This is a Fourth Amendment problem that absolutely requires the assistance of a competent criminal defense attorney to analyze all the facts (e.g., did you give consent to the search? Is that abrogated by an unlawful stop?) pertaining to the stop and what happened after it.

    No attorney can answer the question you asked without all the details. You must discuss this with a Georgia defense attorney, and if you have the police reports, bring them to the meeting.

    Good luck.

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  • Anybody been released early on probation for sex offenses?

    I am raising a kid that has 5yrs deferred for criminal solicitaion of a minor. Any chance that he can apply to get off early?

    Eleanor’s Answer

    Are you talking about JUST probation or sex offender registration as well? They are different and handled differently in most jurisdictions.

    I don't practice in Texas, and recommend strongly that you see a good criminal defense lawyer to have your questions answered.

    However, as I said, in most jurisdictions, if the defendant is JUST on probation, there is a possibility for early termination, depending strongly on how well he is obeying the terms and conditions of his probation. If, on the other hand, he must register as a sex offender, it will certainly be more difficult to end probation early, and a separate court proceeding would probably be needed to handle the issue of whether he must/must not continue to register as a sex offender, even if he is off probation.

    Please contact a good attorney there in Houston who can assist you with these questions.

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  • Do i need a lawyer for this assault charge

    I was on my motor cycle and some guy almost hit me cutting me off i passed him and my wife gave him the "hands in the air what are you thinking come on act" he started driving aggressively behind me honking the horn and followed me off an exit whe...

    Eleanor’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Consult with and retain a lawyer. If you are contacted by the police, direct them to your lawyer. An experienced, competent criminal defense lawyer should know how to "run interference" for you with the police, and possibly even head off a criminal accusation. Even if he/she is unable to do that, there is no reason for you to talk to the police. Their job is to establish probable cause without your statements. If they can't do that, then you can't be charged. If what you are saying is correct, the "other guy" won't have any bruising or other signs of assault, and without that, all the officers have is his word, and no physical evidence. You do not need to assist the police by saying something which might be misconstrued against you.

    Further, should you be charged, your attorney may be able to discuss your version of what happened with a prosecutor, by making a special kind of proffer which cannot be misconstrued or used against you.

    Ultimately, if you are charged with any criminal offense, you may tell the court what happened at the appropriate time, from the witness stand.

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  • Do I have to appear in another state to handle a misdemeanor warrant for failure to appear on a public intox charge?

    I was living in CA at the time of this ticket and failed to appear in court because I was deployed to Iraq. This was about 4 years ago. My license is suspended here in CO and they said I need to go to CA to handle it. In order to appear in their c...

    Eleanor’s Answer

    I don't practice in CA or CO. However, on a misdemeanor charge, an attorney in the state where the misdemeanor took place (here, CA) can probably arrange for telephonic proceedings, on your behalf, including a guilty plea, if that's what you want to do.

    On the other hand, since this is so old, the attorney may want to move to dismiss it, based upon post-charging delay. If a warrant issued for your arrest, the state has some obligation to act diligently to execute (serve) the warrant This involves many factors, however, and you need to discuss them with a knowledgable attorney. For example, have you lived under your own name since you returned from Iraq? Did you have a DL in your name, with a correct address on it, so you could have easily been tracked down by the CA court? As you know, in this age, it is extremely easy for police officers to locate people with outstanding warrants.

    So, if you can't afford a CA attorney, borrow some money and get this taken care of. If you are ever traveling through CA, and are stopped for a minor traffic offense, they will run a check on you for warrants. If one pops up, it will probably cost a lot more than if you voluntarily take care of it.

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