Case Results

Disclaimer: The results obtained in past criminal defense cases is not necessarily indicative of the results that may be achieved in your case because the facts and circumstances of every case are unique.

May 2015

Theft Charge Reduced to Unauthorized Use of Property: My client was charged in connection with the theft of a guitar from a residence. The prosecution had a video of my client selling the stolen guitar at a pawn shop. The prosecution connected my client to the theft because her boyfriend was working at the victim’s house when the guitar was stolen. To make matters worse, my client had a previous history of theft.

After several hearings the prosecutor agreed to reduce the theft charge to unauthorized use of property. My client, instead of facing 6 months in jail and $1000 in fines, was only given a $50 fine.

Threatened Hit and Run Charge Never Filed: My client was accused by law enforcement of being involved in a hit and run on a vehicle. As my client was exiting the highway, she allegedly hit another vehicle and ran from the scene of the accident. Moreover, she refused to give her insurance information to the police after being contacted later. She called my office after the police began harassing her about the incident and showing up at her home and employment.

We decided to contact the police to discover what was going on. After several phone calls to the police, during which the police continued their threats of charging my client with hit and run, which carries 6 months in jail, $1000 in fines and 6 points assessed to the person’s drivers license, the police were persuaded to not charge my client. The harassment of my client ceased and she was never charged with any offense related to the incident.

July 2015

Driving Under Suspension and No Valid Operator’s License Reduced to Approaching Safety Vehicle with Caution: My client, a licensed CDL driver, was charged with driving under suspension, driving a vehicle without a valid operator’s license, and approaching a safety vehicle with caution. My client drove pass a police officer’s vehicle without slowing down or attempting to switch lanes. Another officer, who was responding to the scene of an accident, stopped my client’s vehicle and placed him under arrest. The entire incident was on the officer’s dash camera.

Facing a potential 10 points being added to his driver’s license, thousands in fines and possible jail time, we were facing an uphill battle because of the dash camera. However, after negotiating with the prosecutor, we were able to persuade the prosecutor to dismiss the driving under suspension and no valid operator’s license offenses. My client pled guilty to the remaining charge, approaching a safety vehicle with caution. My client received a $50 fine and only 2 points on his license, allowing him to drive commercially.

September 2015

Consent Issue Leads to Dismissal of Drug Offense Case. My client was suspected of shoplifting from a department store. After my client left the store, a store employee called the police. The police responded to the scene as my client was preparing to drive away. The officers stopped my client, told my client that she was suspected of shoplifting, and then asked for my client’s consent to search her vehicle. My client gave consent to search her vehicle and the police found drugs and a syringe. My client was charged with drug paraphernalia, with the prosecutor’s office deciding whether to charge her with drug possession.

We decided to file a motion to suppress the evidence based on the officers exceeding the scope of my client’s consent. After a motion hearing was held, the court held that the officers had exceeded the scope of my client’s consent. As a result, the prosecutor dismissed the case.

Two No Valid Operator’s License Offenses and Driving Under Suspension Reduced: My client was charged with two offenses related to operating a vehicle without a valid operator’s license and driving under suspension. He was looking at $3000 in fines and jail time because of my client’s previous driving history. However, after negotiating with the prosecutor, one no valid operator’s license offense and the driving under suspension offense were dismissed. My client only paid $250 in fines and had his license reinstated.

Assault and Domestic Violence Reduced to Disorderly Conduct: My client was charged with assault and domestic violence after allegedly throwing a glass ash tray at her boyfriend and striking her boyfriend’s daughter. My client was also charged with disorderly conduct after behaving belligerently towards the police prior to her arrest. The boyfriend and daughter were very interested in having my client found guilty. However, we argued that self-defense applied because the boyfriend and his daughter were the initial aggressors.

The day before trial was to commence, the prosecutor was persuaded to dismiss the assault and domestic violence offenses based on the self-defense theory. Even though my client had an excellent case to take to trial, my client decided to plea guilty to the disorderly conduct charge. Instead of facing a one year in jail, thousands in fines and probation, my client was only given a $50 fine.

October 2015

DUI/OVI Reduced to Reckless Operation: My client was charged with DUI/OVI after being stopped for speeding. My client submitted to field sobriety tests and did not perform badly. However, she admitted to drinking and technically failed the field sobriety tests. After reviewing the evidence, we decided to file a motion to suppress the evidence because the officer did not perform the field sobriety tests in substantial compliance with the NHTSA manual and lacked probable cause to arrest my client.

After filing the motion to suppress, and immediately before the hearing on our motion, the prosecutor offered to amend the original DUI/OVI charge to reckless operation. My client, instead of facing a mandatory 3 days in jail, $1000 in fines and probation, was fined $250. Moreover, we were able to remove the court-imposed driving suspension.

December 2015

Hit and Run Offense Reduced to Braking and Equipment Violation. My client, a licensed CDL driver, was driving his commercial flatbed truck in an area where these vehicles are strictly prohibited. While driving through this area, my client’s vehicle pulled down several power lines and damaging city property. The officer who responded to the scene accused my client of fleeing the scene of the area, which is an offense that carries six (6) months in jail. Moreover, it also carries 6 points on the person’s drivers license. My client was also charged with a traffic violation relating to driving his truck in the area, which carried 2 points.

As a CDL driver, my client could not afford any points on his license. After consultation and negotiation with the prosecutor, we agreed to dismiss the hit an run offense and amend the traffic violation to a no points violation. My client, facing 8 points on his drivers license, six (6) months in jail and more than $1000 in fines, entered into a plea agreement whereby he pled guilty to a braking and equipment violation. This is a no points offense. My client paid a $100 fine and was able to continue his career as a truck driver.

Felony Drug Offense Reduced to Misdemeanor. My client was charged with felony marijuana possession. My client was driving in a neighborhood when he ran a stop sign and almost hit a police cruiser. After being pulled over, the officer immediately noted the strong smell of freshly cut marijuana in my client’s vehicle. After giving consent to search, the officer found a substantial amount of marijuana under my client’s seat. Having several previous drug offenses, my client was facing up to one (1) year in prison.

After speaking with the prosecutor at his first hearing, we agreed that if my client passed a drug test two months later, the possession charge would be reduced to a misdemeanor. My client passed the drug test and the prosecutor agreed to reduce the charge to a misdemeanor and recommend no further action (i.e., jail, probation, etc.). My client was only fined $250.

January 2016

Marijuana Possession and Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor Dismissed. My client, a high school student, was smoking marijuana with his girlfriend when she began feeling ill. My client called an ambulance for her and the police responded to the residence. After my client admitted to possessing marijuana and smoking it with his girlfriend, the officer cited my client for marijuana possession and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Since my client wanted to go to college, but needed student loans to attend (drug convictions can result exclusion from federal student loans), only a complete dismissal of the charges would suffice.

After speaking with the prosecutor, we agreed that if my client completed a marijuana diversion program both charges would be dismissed. My client successfully completed the diversion program and both charges were dismissed, allowing him to attend college with the assistance of federal student loans.

Domestic Violence and Assault Charges Dismissed. My client was arguing with his girlfriend outside of a grocery store. She began to walk away and he grabbed her arm. She responded by striking him in the face. A bystander called the police after hearing the argument. The police responded and my client behaved poorly by attempting to prevent the police from placing him under arrest. He was charged with domestic violence, assault and disorderly conduct.

At the arraignment, my client informed the court that his girlfriend was pregnant at the time of the incident. The information would have resulted in the charge being modified to a felony. However, the prosecutor was persuaded to not proceed with any felony charges. After attending the arraignment and pretrial, the prosecution was unwilling to amend or dismiss any of the charges. However, on the eve of trial, the prosecution was persuaded to dismiss the assault and domestic violence charges and only proceed with the disorderly conduct offense. My client was facing more than a year in jail and thousands in fines. Instead, my client pled guilty to disorderly conduct and received only a $250 fine.

Client Enters Diversion to Dismiss Marijuana Possession and Paraphernalia Charges. My client’s vehicle was stopped after law enforcement witnessed him commit a traffic violation. After giving consent to search his vehicle, the officer found marijuana and drug paraphernalia in his vehicle. My client was cited for possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

After attending the arraignment, we negotiated a dismissal with the prosecution upon the completion of a diversion program. After my client completes the diversion program, the charges will be dismissed and his record will be clean.

Client Enters Diversion to Dismiss Theft Charge. My client was in a grocery store and decided to steal several items. This was observed by a loss prevention officer and recorded on video. The loss prevention officer stopped my client and called the police, who placed my client under arrest for theft.

At the arraignment, we negotiated a dismissal with the prosecution upon completion the completion of a diversion program. After my client completes the diversion program, the charge will be dismissed and her record will be clean.

February 2016

Felony Assault Reduced to Misdemeanor. My client was driving his vehicle late one night when he was pulled over for allegedly improperly passing two vehicles. After being stopped, my client was suspected of driving under the influence and was removed from his vehicle. After being questioned by two officers, my client was placed under arrest. During the course of the arrest, my client behaved poorly and began fighting the officers. The entire incident was captured on video and things did not look good for my client. He was ultimately charged with assault on a police officer (4th degree felony), resisting arrest, obstructing official business and improper passing of vehicles.

My client was facing up to 2 years in prison for these offenses. At his arraignment we were able to have the improper passing offense dismissed. At a subsequent hearing the prosecution was persuaded to dismiss the resisting arrest charge and reduce the obstructing official business to a lesser offense. Finally, on the day of trial, we negotiated with the prosecution to reduce the felony assault on a police officer offense to a misdemeanor. My client walked away with no prison sentence and only probation.

Possession of Marijuana and Paraphernalia Dismissed. My client was drinking with a friend when they decided to walk to a gas station. While at the gas station my client became separated from his friend. When my client’s friend returned home she called the police because she couldn’t find my client. The police, as they approached the friend’s house, spotted marijuana and drug paraphernalia in my client’s vehicle. The police later found my client stumbling around the gas station. My client was charged with disorderly conduct public intoxication, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

My client worked at a car dealership and could not afford to lose his driver’s license for the mandatory minimum of 6 months because of the two drug offenses. After negotiations with the prosecution, we arrived at an amicable plea agreement where the possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia charges were dismissed and my client pled guilty to disorderly conduct. Instead of having his driver’s license suspended, my client only received a $150 fine.

March 2016

Dismissal of Possession of Marijuana and Marijuana Paraphernalia Offenses. My client, a college student, was driving home one night when he was stopped by the police for speeding. Upon my client rolling down his window, the officer immediately smelled an odor of marijuana. Based on this odor, the officer searched my client’s vehicle and found a small amount of marijuana, a grinder and a one hitter. My client was charged with possession of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia. While both of these are minor misdemeanors and, thus, do not carry a jail sentence, my client was soon to be graduating from college and could not afford a drug conviction on his record and to have his license suspended for a mandatory 6 months.

The county in which my client was charged in does not offer any diversion programs for drug offenses. At the arraignment, we instead sought a motion for continuance so that my client could be evaluated for Intervention in Lieu of Conviction (ILC). Under Ohio law, this allows an offender to argue that his or her offense(s) were related drugs and, thus, the offender should be permitted to enter counseling or receive drug education instead of being sentenced. After being evaluated, we persuaded the court to grant my client’s request for ILC. One year from now my client’s case will be dismissed and he will have no drug conviction on his record.

Theft Offense Results in Only a Small Fine. My client, a mother of two young children, was caught shoplifting and charged with theft. The entire incident was caught on the retailer’s camera and clearly showed my client doing exactly what she was accused of. To complicate matters, my client was previously convicted of a felony theft offense and two misdemeanor theft offenses. Facing up to 6 months in jail, it was imperative to keep her out of jail because she was the primary provided for her two young children.

After several hearings, the prosecutor was persuaded to recommend only a minimum fine, no jail and no probation. My client, instead of being sent to jail like so many in her position, only received a $100 fine.

April 2016

Dismissal of Possession of Marijuana and Marijuana Paraphernalia Offenses. My client, a high school student, was in a vehicle with several of his friends one night when law enforcement approached their vehicle. The officers had received complaints from neighbors that several teenagers were smoking marijuana in front of their houses. After smelling the odor of marijuana emanating from the vehicle, the officers ordered my client and his friends out of the vehicle. A search of the vehicle uncovered several bags of marijuana, a grinder and a one hitter. My client was charged with possession of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia.

As a high school student in the middle of applying to colleges, a drug conviction would have severely hampered his ability to gain admission to those universities and apply for student loans. Moreover, my client was most likely going to be a commuter student and could not afford to lose his driver’s license for 6 months. At his arraignment, we persuaded the prosecutor and judge to grant his application for diversion. Upon successfully completed the diversion program, my client will have no criminal record.

Dismissal of OVI, OVI Refusal, Marijuana Possession, Open Container, and No Operator’s License Charges. My client, who had a previous OVI conviction within 6 months of these charges, was charged with OVI, OVI Refusal, Marijuana Possession, Drug Paraphernalia, Driving Under Suspension and No Operator’s License. Since my client had a previous OVI conviction within 6 years, my client was looking at increased penalties, such as a mandatory 10 day jail sentence for the OVI offense, ignition interlock device, SCRAM bracelet, and yellow license tags. In addition to the mandatory 10 days for the OVI offense, my client faced a mandatory jail term of 20 days for the OVI Refusal offense.

To make matters worse, my client admitted to possessing and smoking the marijuana, and to drinking that night. All of this was caught on the officer’s dash camera. My client, as the sole provider for his family, could not afford a 10 day mandatory jail sentence which would have resulted in the loss of his employment as a chef. At his second hearing, called a pre-trial, we negotiated a plea agreement with the prosecution whereby the OVI, OVI Refusal, Marijuana Possession, Open Container and No Operator’s License charges were dismissed. My client pled guilty to Physical Control and Drug Paraphernalia. Facing a mandatory jail sentence of 30 days, and a maximum jail sentence of more than 1 year, my client received only 5 days in jail and was granted work privileges.

Probation Only for a Felony Drug Offense. My client, an out-of-state resident, was observed speeding and tailgating by law enforcement. Upon being pulled over, my client changed seats with his girlfriend in their vehicle. His girlfriend moved to the driver’s seat while my client moved to the passenger seat. This was done in view of the officer. The officer asked my client to step out of the vehicle, patted him down for weapons, and found both marijuana and clonazepam on his person. My client then admitted it was his and was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance, marijuana possession, drug paraphernalia, operating a vehicle without a valid driver’s license and speeding.

To make matters, my client had a significant criminal and drug possession history, had been to prison multiple times for, and pled guilty to marijuana possession, drug paraphernalia, operating a vehicle without a valid driver’s license and speeding prior to having an attorney represent him. My client was facing up to 1 year in prison for this offense and he had already admitted the facts as alleged because of his plea to the other charges. However, at my client’s arraignment, both the prosecutor and judge were persuaded to sentence my client to only probation. Instead of going back to prison, my client was released and placed on probation.

May 2016

Diversion Program for Possession of Marijuana and Drug Paraphernalia Offenses. My client, a college student, was charged with Speeding, Possession of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. The officer clocked my client going more than 20 MPH over the speed limit and smelled marijuana emanating from her vehicle. Thus, the officer had probable cause to search my client’s vehicle and seize the marijuana and paraphernalia found inside.

Relying on student loans, my client could not afford to have a drug offense on her record as she would have lost her student loans. Prior to my client’s arraignment, we contacted the diversion coordinator and the prosecutor regarding enrolling my client in a diversion program. When we appeared for my client’s arraignment, my client was permitted to enroll in the diversion program. Upon the successful completion of the program, we will have my client’s record expunged and she will have no criminal history.

Dismissal of Contributing to the Delinquency of a Child Offense. My client, a father, was charged with Contributing to the Delinquency of a Child after his teenage son refused to attend class. My client’s son was enrolled in an online program for high school and was required to log on by a certain time each day or be counted as having missed class that day. The son refused to log on for a significant period of time, and the state responded by filing a contributing charge against my client.

My client is employed full time. He could not be home to monitor whether his son was actually logging in and completing his school work. After two hearings, the prosecutor was persuaded to dismiss the charge against my client.

June 2016

Domestic Violence, Assault, Aggravated Menacing and Use of a Firearm While Intoxicated Charges Dismissed. My client was charged with the aforementioned offenses after allegedly striking his wife with a gun and threatening to shoot her while in a heavily intoxicated state. This was witnessed by their adult son, who called the police. To make matters worse, my client’s wife and son each provided a witness statement to the police and could be heard on a dash camera video recording accusing my client of the above mentioned conduct.

Each of the charges listed above carried 6 months in jail, for a total potential sentence of 2 years. However, after several hearings, the prosecutor was persuaded to dismiss all charges the day before trial and instead only pursue a Disorderly Conduct offense. My client, facing potentially a multiple year sentence, was instead given only a $150 fine and probation.

Diversion Program for Theft Offense. My client, a juvenile, was charged with theft after assisting her friend in stealing make-up from a local store. To make matters worse, a loss prevention officer attempted to stop my client and her friend, but my client got in her vehicle and drove away. My client was later stopped by law enforcement and charged with theft.

As a high school student who had never been in trouble before, my client was terrified of what would happen in court. However, after consultation with the prosecutor and diversion coordinator, my client avoided having to appear in court and instead enrolled in the court’s diversion program. Upon successfully completing the program, my client’s case will be dismissed.

July 2016

Cruelty to Companion Animal Charge Dismissed. My client, a mother to a teenage child and avid dog lover, was charged with Cruelty to Companion Animal after law enforcement found her dogs unattended in a vehicle when it was below freezing outside. The officers accused her of purposefully leaving her dogs unattended for over an hour in her vehicle.

After obtaining discovery, we discovered that the officers were clearly lying about what had occurred. My client was stopping by a relative’s house and her daughter remained the vehicle with their dogs. My client’s daughter went inside for a few minutes to go to the bathroom and, while returning to the vehicle, the officer’s accused and charged my client. Instead of leaving her dogs unattended for an hour, my client left her dogs with her daughter and were unattended for only a few minutes. After speaking with the prosecutor, the charge was dismissed.

Possession of Marijuana Offense Never Charged. My client, a pharmaceutical representative, was stopped by law enforcement after allegedly failing to use a turn signal. With no reason to search his vehicle, the officer waited for a K-9 unit to arrive and sniff the outside of my client’s vehicle. The dog “hit” on a smell and law enforcement searched my client and his vehicle. The search turned up a bag of marijuana on my client’s person. After a short wait, a detective with a drug task force arrived and wished for my client to wear a wire while visiting the person that my client bought the marijuana found.

Upon this request by the detective, my client politely informed the detective that he needed to speak with an attorney. After consultation with Johnson Legal, LLC, we spoke with the detective. We were able to persuade the detective to not only not press charges, but also to not make this conditioned upon my client wearing a wire and being involved in the detective’s investigation. My client walked away with no possession of marijuana charge.

Marijuana Possession and Drug Paraphernalia Charge Dismissed. My client, an out-of-state residence, was pulled over after a minor traffic infraction. The officer, with my client’s consent, searched his vehicle and found marijuana and paraphernalia in my client’s vehicle. As a graduate student in need of student loans, my client could not afford to be ineligible for student loans or have his driver’s license suspended for 6 months.

After speaking with the prosecutor, we were able to persuaded the prosecutor to amend one of the charges to a minor misdemeanor disorderly conduct and dismiss the other. My client never had to appear in court and was only required to pay a small fine. He remains eligible for student loans and retained his driver’s license. One year from now we will be filing to have his offense expunged and it will be as if it never happened.

August 2016

Diversion Program for Marijuana Possession and Marijuana Paraphernalia Offenses. My client, a high school student with aspirations of attending college next year, was charged with marijuana possession and paraphernalia after the vehicle he was in was approached by law enforcement while parked in a parking lot. While cooperative with law enforcement, my client admitted that the marijuana and paraphernalia was his. My client was cited and served a summons to appear in mayor’s court.

The mayor’s court he was to appear in has a reputation not wanting to admit many individuals into their diversion program (only 4 participants in diversion in the last 13 years). However, after several consultations with the diversion coordinator, persuading the citing officer to agree to permit my client to enter the diversion program, and appearing before the magistrate, my client was admitted to the program (now the 5th participant in 13 years). Upon completing the program, my client will have his case dismissed and we will expunge his record.

Speeding Ticket Dismissed. My client, a CDL driver, was having a rough year driving. He accumulated multiple speeding offenses and moving violations, resulting in a total of 8 points on his license. To make matters worse, my client was informed by his employer after a previous speeding offense that any future traffic violations of points on his license would result in the termination of his employment. Since my client was looking to retire in less than 2 years, he was very concerned about not being hired by another company.

At our first appearance, the prosecutor was unwilling to amend the speeding offense to a non-moving violation (i.e., no points). Therefore, we scheduled a trial for the matter. However, after filing for discovery and, specifically, demanding the officer’s certification to use a radar speed device and records regarding the calibration of the device, the prosecutor chose to dismiss my client’s case. My client will be able to maintain his employment.

Theft Offense Dismissed in Favor of Diversion. My client, an immigrant on a work visa, was charged with theft after walking out of a grocery store with several items without paying for them. Since any criminal offense can result in his deportation, my client could not afford to have this on his criminal record. However, after speaking with the prosecutor and diversion program before his arraignment, my client was permitted to enter a diversion program. Upon completing the program, my client’s case will be dismissed and we will expunge his record.

September 2016

Assault Dismissed. My client got into an altercation with her roommate after her roommate returned home from a night of drinking. My client’s roommate started the altercation and it escalated to a fight that was so loud that their neighbor’s called the police. Upon arriving on scene, the officers found a house in complete disarray and evidence of an assault. The officers first arrested my client’s roommate, but my client’s roommate wanted to press charges against my client. The police arrested both and my client and her roommate pressed charges against each other.

Both my client and her roommate cooled down before their arraignment and wanted to dismiss the charges against each of them. However, the prosecutor refused to do this and continued his refusal at their pre-trial. After failing to handle her case without an attorney, my client secured the representation of my firm. We reached an agreement with the prosecution soon after that resulted in the dismissal of her case upon completing 20 hours of community service. This was completed and my client’s case was dismissed.

Domestic Violence and Assault Charges Dismissed. My client’s girlfriend called the police after having a fight with my client. My client accidently shut her finger in a door during an argument. Officers responded to my client’s residence and placed my client under arrested for domestic violence, assault and disorderly conduct.

The prosecution refused to dismiss any charges before trial. However, on the eve of trial, the prosecution agreed to dismiss the domestic violence and assault charges. Even though this was a case worthy of trial, my client simply wanted to end the case and move on with his life. Therefore, my client agreed to plea guilty to disorderly conduct if the state dismissed the domestic violence and assault charges. My client was given a small fine only.

October 2016

Probation Only for Felony Drug Offenses and Endangering Children. My client, a father of three suffering from serious physical ailments, was charged with 2nd degree felony illegal manufacture of drugs, 2nd degree felony illegal assembly or possession of chemicals for drug manufacture and 3rd degree felony endangering children. A neighbor called the police in response to a strange smell coming from my client’s residence. Upon responding to my client’s residence, the officer’s immediately noted a strong odor of marijuana coming from my client’s residence. To make matters worse, my client consented to a search of his house. The officers found a significant marijuana grow operation and charged my client with the aforementioned offenses.

My client was facing up to 19 years in prison. However, after several conversations with the prosecution, we reached an agreement whereby my client agreed to enter a guilty plea to the sole charge of 3rd degree felony illegal cultivation of marijuana. The other two offenses were dismissed, along with the juvenile specifications. At the sentencing hearing, we were able to effectively argue for probation (known as “community control” in Ohio). My client received probation only, no driver’s license suspension and avoided having his children removed from his home due to the endangering children offense being dismissed.

Probation for Significant Felony Theft Offender. My client, a man with a significant criminal history for theft’s, assault and drug offenses, was charged with felony theft, breaking and entering, possession of criminal tools, and misdemeanor criminal damaging. To make matters worse, my client had two co-defendants. After reviewing the evidence, I advised my client that the case against him was suspect, but the case against his co-defendants was quite strong. Despite this evidence, my client refused to accept any plea agreement because it would have required him to testify against his co-defendants. Therefore, my client went to trial with his co-defendants.

After the jury deliberated for hours on a Friday evening, the jury returned a verdict finding my client and his co-defendants guilty. However, at the sentencing hearing, we were able to effectively argue that my client should only be subject to a term of community control. The judge imposed community control and my client avoided a potential jail sentence of more than 3 years in prison.

November 2016

DUI / OVI Reduced to Physical Control. My client, a nurse, was driving home one evening and stopped her vehicle at a convenience store, blocking the entrance. Law enforcement observed this and approached her vehicle believing that my client may have been in distress. The officers immediately noted the strong smell of alcohol emanating from my client and my client admitted to consuming several glasses of wine. The officers then asked that she perform several field sobriety tests, which my client failed. In addition, my client was very combative with the officers who stopped her and she made numerous statements that she was going to harm herself. To make matters worse, she was previously charged with DUI / OVI.

My client retained a different attorney to represent her. This attorney applied for driving privileges for my client, which was denied, and did not return my client’s phone calls or emails. My client terminated that attorney’s representation and retained Johnson Legal, LLC. We immediately filed for driving privileges, which were granted, and began working on the case. Even though the evidence was not favorable and my client behaved combatively with law enforcement, we were able to secure an agreement with the prosecution to a reduced charge of physical control. This offense is a non-moving offense, carries zero points on a person’s driver license and will not allow for escalated penalties should my client ever be charged with DUI / OVI again.

Diversion Program for Marijuana Possession. My client, an older gentleman who owns his own business, was in town for a wedding when his vehicle was stopped because his tail light was out. The officer noted the smell of marijuana in my client’s vehicle and asked to search the vehicle. My client consented and the officer found marijuana in his vehicle. My client was cited for possession of marijuana and scheduled for an arraignment.

Since my client was an out-of-state resident and his home was in the path of a major hurricane, he was unable to attend his arraignment. A not guilty plea was filed on his behalf so that my client did not have to attend his arraignment. This was highly unusual because diversion is usually only permitted if the individual enters a guilty plea at the arraignment. However, we persuaded the prosecutor to permit my client to enter diversion at the trial date. My client will soon have this matter expunged and his record will remain spotless.

December 2016

Client Avoids Prison Term for Felony Breaking and Entering and Theft Charges. My client, a young man with a significant criminal history, was indicted for Breaking and Entering, Theft and Possession of Criminal Tools after breaking into a store and stealing thousands of dollars worth of cigarettes. To make matters worse, my client voluntarily went to the police station without an attorney and admitted to being the person who committed the theft.

After several consultations with the prosecution, we reached a plea agreement whereby the prosecutor dismissed the felony Theft and Possession of Criminal Tools offenses, and my client entered a guilty plea to the Breaking and Entering charge. However, the prosecution would only agree to not recommend a sentence to the court. Therefore, we had to prepare for a sentencing hearing and convince the judge to place my client on probation.

At the sentencing hearing, we presented the testimony of my client’s wife, who stated that she was five months pregnant, unable to work due to a high-risk pregnancy, and needed the financial support of her husband (my client). We also argued that the purposes and principles of sentencing were satisfied by placing my client on probation, instead of a prison term. The probation department, via a pre-sentence investigation, recommended that my client serve a prison term. However, the judge disregarded this recommendation and sentencing my client to probation only.

January 2017

Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor Charge Dismissed. My client, an individual on parole from another state, was charged with Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor. My client’s was a manager of a bar and asked my client to help out at the bar since they were short on staff. The bar had an individual checking all of their patrons identification’s prior to entering the bar. However, this individual was not doing his job that night and let in a person working undercover for the police without checking her identification. This person was underage and my client served her an alcoholic beverage at the bar.

After several hearings and conversations with the prosecutor, the prosecutor agreed to dismiss the charge against my client. Even though Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor is a strict-liability offense, we demonstrated to the prosecutor that my client was not an employee of the bar, was only trying to help out his wife, and the individual that was supposed to be checking identification’s that night was terminated from his employment at the bar.