Fairfax Criminal Lawyer Articles

Faraji A. Rosenthall has been educating the public and clients alike through online articles about common legal topics and through the distribution of free educational downloads.

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Theft Lawyers and Crimes in Fairfax Virginia

Have You Been Accused of Theft? Being convicted of a theft charge can change your life forever, and not for the best. Once convicted, and sometimes if you were simply charged but not convicted, you may not be able to get certain jobs nor be put in any form of fiduciary positions. These charges tend to last throughout your lifetime, unless you have gotten your record expunged or sealed.   Though it may seem like the only people convicted of theft charges are those considered to be poor, those who have means also can be convicted of theft charges. For instance, in recent news, a Judge in New Mexico and a high school bookkeeper in Wisconsin were charged and convicted of embezzlement. It can happen to anyone at any time. However, if you lack the requisite intent, you may be able to dodge a theft conviction. If you or a loved one have been charged with theft, contact an experienced Virginia theft charge attorney to consult about your case. Different Forms of Theft Charges in Virginia In Virginia, all theft and theft-related crimes are considered larceny. Though there is not an exact definition for larceny, larceny is, essentially, unlawfully taking property of another with the intent to permanently deprive that person of their property. Larceny in Virginia comes in many forms: Larceny of certain animals and poultry; Larceny of bank notes and checks; Concealing or taking possession of merchandise; Receiving stolen goods; Embezzlement: Embezzlement is considered the wrongful taking of money or valuable property that took place while the offender was entrusted with someone else’s property. Shoplifting is committed... read more

Fairfax County Hit and Run Lawyer

Can I Face Criminal Penalties for a Hit and Run? We are human beings and because of this we are not perfect all of the time. However, because we are human, whenever we are in the wrong, one of two things tends to happen: We accept whatever consequences come from our actions or we flee from the harm that our actions have caused. Facing the consequences is admirable, but fleeing the scene of an incident can have huge consequences. This is especially true when there is a hit and run accident. If you or a loved one have been charged with a hit and run you should contact an experienced Virginia hit and run attorney to look into your case. What is a Hit and Run? A hit and run is a car accident with either an object, another car, or a pedestrian, in which the driver intentionally leaves the scene without leaving proper contact information. When there is a hit and run, the crime is committed as soon as you leave the scene of an accident that you have caused without following proper protocol. What are the Consequences of a Hit and Run? In Virginia, it is illegal to leave an accident without following the proper protocol set out in Virginia’s laws. Generally, whenever you are involved in a car accident, you are required to wait at the scene until the police arrive and investigate. Virginia Code Section 46.2-894 states that if a driver is involved in an accident with an injured person, or damaged property, the driver is required to stop and report his or her name,... read more

Fairfax County DWI Enforcement Over Holidays

DUIs During the Holidays Most people cannot wait for the holidays to come around. Holidays are usually connected to friends, family, parties, and fun. Though every day may be important to you, there are certain holidays that require a good time with family and friends, like Independence Day, Memorial Day, Thanksgiving, and New Year’s Eve. Enjoying yourself with family and friends may be important during this holiday, but it is best to be wise while celebrating. Though you may decide to indulge in a drink, be sure to make it minimal because law enforcement will be looking for drunk drivers. If you or a loved one have been charged with a DUI, contact an experienced Virginia DUI attorney to seek legal advice. How Do the Holidays Effect DUIs? During the holidays there are many parties and other social gatherings. These times are fun filled, but can often lead to driving while intoxicated. In Virginia, DUIs are considered driving under the influence. Between the months of November and January, law enforcement is increased to protect other drivers on the road from drunk drivers. Virginia has a Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign, and during this time more people are pulled over and arrested for drunk driving than any other time during the year. The number of accidents and deaths tends to increase drastically during this time, as well. During the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, 145 people were arrested for DUIs, which is 54 more than last year, with the numbers steadily increasing. During Christmas and New Year’s the number of accidents and deaths is expected to rise by 12% with New Year’s Eve continuously... read more

When Can a Juvenile Be Charged As An Adult in Fairfax Virginia?

Can a Juvenile Be Charged as an Adult? Your kids are everything to you. Even when they disobey you and get into trouble, they are still your kids and you will do anything for them. Though you love them and will give them as many chances as necessary to get things right, the criminal justice system is not as considerate. What happens when your minor child get into trouble with the law? Will the criminal justice system treat them as a child or will the criminal justice system see them as an adult? If your loved one has been charged with a crime that could have them charged as an adult, it is important to contact an experienced Virginia juvenile defense attorney to fight for your child’s rights. When Can a Juvenile Be Charged as an Adult in Virginia? In Virginia the age for criminal accountability is 18, and anyone less than 18 years of age is defined as a juvenile. However, depending on the crime that the juvenile has been charged with, those who are 14 years of age and older and are competent to stand trial can be transferred to adult court. When determining whether a juvenile case should be transferred to the adult court, the court will look at whether the alleged offense was committed in an aggressive, violent, premeditated, or willful manner. If a juvenile has been charged with a felony such as capital murder, first degree murder, lynching, or aggravated malicious wounding, then a transfer to adult court is mandatory. In contrast, though transfers are mandatory, written notice that the case is being transferred... read more

Fairfax, VA Grand Larceny Lawyer | Former Prosecutor Faraji Rosenthall

What to Do if You Have Been Charged with Grand Larceny in Fairfax County, Virginia It can be surprising how quickly a larceny can be a life changing event. People may make an error in judgment, taking something without realizing that the value of the object they took made the action a felony. From there, life can be an uphill battle. Employers in particular are skeptical of hiring individuals with grand larcenies on their record because of the perceived harm that stealing will do to their business. If you have been charged with Grand Larceny in Fairfax County, Virginia, you need to know what the offense entails and what your options may be. So, what is grand larceny? Grand larceny is covered under Virginia Code 18.2-95. Typically, the Commonwealth needs to prove that you intentionally took something without permission and that the thing you took was valued at more than $200.00. You can also commit a grand larceny by taking something valued at more than $5.00 from the person of another or by stealing a firearm. However, those portions of the statute are rarely used. This piece will instead focus on what it means to be charged with stealing something valued at greater than $200.00 in Fairfax County, Virginia. What Qualifies as a Grand Larceny? The thing about grand larceny in Fairfax County, Virginia is that it includes basically any kind of theft. One of the more common ways to get charged with grand larceny is to commit shoplifting. If you handle merchandize in a way that goes beyond what the store allows, you could be in trouble. Critically,... read more

Juvenile Drug Distribution Lawyer Fairfax Va

Juvenile Drug Distribution Charges Kids do stupid things. Maybe because they are following cultural suggestions or maybe because they just want to make an easy buck, minors sometimes get caught up in the drug distribution racket. Their parents are probably aware that such actions can have long term consequences. The good news is that, while drug charges are serious, Virginia takes a rehabilitative approach that presents the possibility of keeping a long term conviction off the minor’s record. Generally, for adult marijuana distributions the offense is a Class 1 Misdemeanor if it involves less than half an ounce. More than a half ounce but less than 5 pounds is punished as a Class 5 felony. More than 5 pounds leads to a sentence of between 5 years and 30 years. However, in many case the key is not getting the juvenile charged as an adult at all. Keeping the Case in the Juvenile Courts For minors, that is, those under the age of 18, criminal cases must originate in the Juvenile & Domestic Relations Courts. The judges in these courts have a wide range of options available for disposing of juvenile defendants. They can, for example, place the defendant on house arrest or, in some cases, they can even defer ruling on the charge and dismiss the case if the defendant complies with a probationary period. The decision on whether or not a juvenile case will be transferred will often depend on the judge. If the child is above the age of 14, the Commonwealth can request that an offense that would be a felony if committed by an... read more

Fairfax Va Juvenile Traffic Lawyer

What are the Consequences of a Juvenile Traffic Violations? Despite the common belief, traffic violations are actually fairly serious business. This can be especially true for juvenile traffic convictions, which can have a whole range of consequences for the child. A child can have his licenses suspended or his insurance can go up. Of course, this can limit a student’s ability to engage in after school activities or employment. Even worse, serious criminal charges might need to be disclosed on the juvenile’s college applications. Juveniles can be convicted of the same sorts of traffic convictions as adults. This includes reckless driving, DUIs and speeding. They can also be charged with a series of offenses that are relevant only to minors. For example, a juvenile defendant can be charged with a kind of DUI that is specific to minors. They can also be charged with violating curfew. Many of these offenses are infractions and can be prepaid. However, juveniles will need to appear in court for the same offenses in which adults are required to appear. What are the Components of Juvenile Specific Driving Offenses? In Virginia, those under the age of 21 are not permitted to drink alcohol. A minor with a blood alcohol level of between .02 and .07 can be convicted of what is often called a “baby DUI.” The consequences for a baby DUI were once softer than a normal DUI, but changes in the law have since brought the penalties up to par with the adult version. Like an adult DUI, the offense contains a potential jail sentence of up to 12 months. There is... read more

Fairfax Va Juvenile Assault and Battery Lawyer

Juvenile Assault and Battery There was a time when fights between youths were just considered a normal part of growing up. The Commonwealth understood this as well and made an effort not to prosecute such scuffles. However, the Commonwealth more and more these days has found it worthwhile to drag these charges into court. As technically violent offenses, an assaults and batteries can have a troublesome effect on a child’s future. First, it can get the child involved in the criminal justice system through probation or detention. As well, colleges may ask about juvenile convictions in their application process. As a misdemeanor, a juvenile assault and battery is prosecuted as a delinquent act in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court. The J&DR judge has a wide range of options to deal with juvenile ranging from deferment to detention to house arrest. That being said, an assault and battery can be charged as felony, usually relating to the involvement of a police officer or teacher. Under this circumstance, a conviction will result in a lifelong criminal record for the child. What is an Assault and Battery? An assault and battery is a very commonly charged offense. By itself, an assault is putting someone else in reasonable fear of eminent bodily harm. Think of it as a threat with an action towards that threat and the present ability to carry out the threat. Simple statements are not enough, but a threatening action will usually suffice. An assault and battery is essentially any kind of harmful or offensive touching. Even spitting can count as an assault and battery. A defendant may also... read more

When Is Domestic Violence a Felony Under Virginia Law?

WHEN IS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE A FELONY IN VIRGINIA? Domestic Violence, or Assault and battery against a family or household member as it is known under Virginia law is typically a class 1 misdemeanor.  That means that it is technically punishable by up to 12 months in jail and a fine of $2500.  In actuality penalties are typically much lighter than that.  First time offenders, for example are eligible for diversion which is frequently given, unless there is particularly egregious injuries or some other exaggerating factor.  However there are certain conditions where a domestic assault charge can be prosecuted as a felony. Virginia has a sort of 3 strikes law when it comes to Domestic violence.  If a person is convicted of a third domestic violence act the third conviction is a class 6 felony.  That increases the potential jail time to 5 years.  Additionally, all the other consequences that come with being a convicted felon (criminal record, loss of right to vote or possess guns) are all involved.  The prior offenses do not have to be specifically for domestic violence.  Any priors for domestic violence count, but so do convictions for malicious or unlawful wounding, aggravated malicious wounding, strangulation.  In order to make the new charge a felony there must be a prior record of 2 of those charges committed in the last 20 years. So the short answer is that Domestic Violence is typically a misdemeanor, unless you have previously been convicted of other violent charges twice in the last 20 years.          ... read more

What to Do If You Got a Reckless Driving Ticket in Fairfax, VA and Live Out of State

What to do if you live out of state and received a reckless driving ticket in Fairfax County If you have been stopped by the police and issued a ticket for reckless driving, you were probably surprised when the officer told you that you would have to come to court.  If you live out of the state, this probably made you very nervous, because a return to the state would be inconvenient and possibly expensive.  Unfortunately, the nature of the charge requires you to appear in court.  This is because it is technically a class 1 misdemeanor and jail time is a possibility.  Obviously, the vast majority of reckless driving tickets do not result in jail time.  That only happens for people who were going well above the speed limit and were going over 90 miles an hour.  However, until your case is resolved in the courtroom there is no way for the judge to waive the requirement that you appear in court. Fortunately, Fairfax has recognized that this requirement places an undue burden on a number of people who may have just gotten the ticket while they were passing through the state.  The court has no interest in making individuals who would not be facing jail time suffer the expense of returning.  To that extent the court has established a policy that allows drivers who do not want to come to have a lawyer take their place at the hearing.  It is a relatively simple procedure and happens several times a day. If you want to hire a lawyer to take your place, you will first need to... read more

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Email faraji@fairfaxcriminallawyer.com

10560 Main Street • Suite 310 • Fairfax, Virginia 22030

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