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An attorney can assist in the defense of the charge of driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) by looking at various factors including whether or not there was reasonable suspicion under the law for the automobile to be stopped, if there was probable cause to for the arrest, the admissibility of any statements, and issues surrounding field sobriety tests and testing after arrest.
A formal record is made when an individual is arrested for a crime, even if the individual is never formally charged. A record is made even if the individual is charged and found not guilty. These records are public and potentially visible to government agencies, employers, and others. An individual can file an action in court to have an arrest expunged or removed from his/her record.
Qualifying felony offenses may be expunged from an individual's record. If the individual is eligible for expungement the felony conviction will be removed from the his/her record. An individual who has been convicted of writing a bad check, possession of controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, false pretense, larceny, malicious mischief, or shoplifting may be able to have his/her record expunged five years after the completion of the terms of the sentence. A criminal record can affect an individual's ability to gain employment, security clearance, professional licenses, school opportunities, etc., thus he/she may benefit from expungement of the felony conviction.
Qualifying misdemeanor offenses may be expunged from an individual's record. If the individual is eligible for expungement the misdemeanor conviction will be removed from the his/her record. An individual who has been convicted of a misdemeanor, excluding traffic offenses (this includes DUIs), and who is a first offender, may petition a court for an order to expunge the conviction from all public records. A criminal record can affect an individual's ability to gain employment, security clearance, professional licenses, school opportunities, etc., thus he/she may benefit from expungement of the misdemeanor conviction.
A felony is a crime for which the defendant on conviction can be punished for one year or more in a state of federal prison, or death. Examples of felony crimes include aggravated assault, armed robbery, burglary with intent to commit a felony, drug trafficking, embezzlement, kidnapping, manslaughter, murder, rape. An individual should not plead guilty without speaking with an attorney and considering all options available to him/her.
In Mississippi many offenses committed by juveniles, minors under the age of 18, may be subject to the Mississippi Youth Court. However, there are some offenses that will cause the minor to be treated like an adult within the judicial system. The Youth court may make a finding that the minor child that committed the offense is a child in need of supervision or a delinquent child.
A misdemeanor is a crime for which the defendant on conviction can be incarcerated for one year or less and/or fined. Examples of misdemeanor crimes include driving under the influence (DUI), drug possession, resisting arrest, public intoxication, and soliciting prostitutes.
Traffic offenses, other than DUI, including speeding, driving with suspended license, drag racing, reckless driving, can have consequences that are beyond the fine for the ticket, such as higher automobile insurance costs, limit eligibility for certain jobs, and license suspension. Many traffic tickets can be easily handled, but the individual should not always assume that the ticket automatically means that he/she was in the wrong. An individual should never simply accept a questionable ticket, and should consult with an attorney to determine what options are available to limit future consequences of being found guilty for the traffic offense.
An individual's right to possess a firearm is forfeited as a result of felony conviction, domestic violence conviction, and conviction of other violent crimes. An individual who has a conviction preventing him/her from possessing a firearm may petition the court for a certificate of rehabilitation. The court may grant the certificate upon a showing that the individual has been rehabilitated; has led a useful, productive, and law abiding life since the completion of his/her sentence; and he/she is not likely to act in a manner which endangers public safety.