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Case Conclusion Date: 08.25.2015
Practice Area: Criminal defense
Description: Client charged with Theft in the Third Degree under RCW 9A.56.050. This is a gross misdemeanor punishable up to 364 days jail and a $5,000.00 fine. Client was investigated by her former government employer for defrauding the government of travel reimbursement checks. This charge was particularly debilitating because Client risked losing federal disability benefits if she was convicted of this crime of dishonesty. At first, Prosecutor did not want to negotiate. However, Mr. Ransom assembled a compelling merit package and proceeded with a strong Diminished Capacity Defense. This defense requires proof from an expert that the Defendant experienced an impaired mental condition, caused by disease, trauma, or intoxication but short of insanity, that can reduce the criminal culpability, intent and/or responsibility of the defendant. Mr. Ransom's pretrial motions compelling discovery (evidence) revealed that client was over-prescribed pain medications after suffering debilitating work-related injuries. Also, the government lacked documentary evidence showing that client intentionally defrauded the government. Finally, Mr. Ransom persuaded Client's doctor to testify as the expert necessary to prove the Diminished Capacity defense. All these facts and circumstances persuaded Prosecutor to enter a 6-month Stipulated Order of Continuance, also called an "SOC Agreement" (for more information on SOC's please read Mr. Ransom's Legal Guide titled, GETTING CASES DISMISSED VIA STIPULATED ORDER OF CONTINUANCE). This was an excellent resolution which avoided a criminal conviction to a crime of dishonesty and prevented Client's federal disability benefits from being cut.