Representing Students Charged with Criminal Activities
Episode 6: Louisville criminal defense attorney Tim Denison discusses representing students charged with criminal activities. Let’s listen to Tim explain the details, in this episode.
This charge can generally be dealt with by volunteer work and some commitments from the student to stay out of trouble. The charge can eventually be dismissed. After the dismissal, the charge could also be expunged, as we discussed in Episode 5.
In Kentucky, this is often both Assault and Battery. Assault 4 is a misdemeanor (up to 12 months). There’s either no injury or a minor injury. Assault 3 is a Class D felony, usually reserved for some type of contact with a law enforcement officer or healthcare worker such as a nurse or doctor. Assault 2 is a Class C felony, often involving a substantial injury or disfiguration, with a dangerous instrument, such as in a bar fight. Assault 1 is a Class B felony (10-20 years) such as a DUI resulting in an injury to a victim you crashed into. It might be a shooting that did not resolve in death.
Kentucky allows many of these cases to be resolved via a misdemeanor drug diversion program, which dismisses the charge if you complete it. Again, 60 days later, the charge could be expunged. In Jefferson County, marijuana possession is generally not being enforced at this time. Depending upon the amount of marijuana, it may be considered trafficking with different penalties.
The school or university may decide to take additional punitive action. Tim has also represented students in these administrative hearings.
Heroin, meth and other drugs are taken more seriously. How these are pursued depend on the amount seized, the type of drug and the defendant’s criminal record.
Working to Get the Charge Reduced
There may be a possibility of getting the charges reduced. Each case is unique, but a skilled criminal defense attorney may be able to successfully get the charges reduced to minimize the impact on the defendant’s record. Drug charges and related charges need to be positioned, if possible, to eventually enable them to be expunged. The long-term impact of having these charges is that they’ll remain on your record and will negatively affect your ability to apply for certain jobs.
The damage can usually be mitigated, if action is quickly taken. Entering a diversion program may be an option to get the charge dismissed and then expunged after 2 years (not the normal 60-day period). If convicted, the DUI will remain on your record for 10 years.
The diversion program can also enable you to keep your license, while you’re actively participating in the program.
Avoid Common Misconceptions
Students typically don’t understand how DUI offenses can be enhanced. They also fail to recognize how serious the ramifications can become with a second or third offense. As with other criminal charges, people commonly make the mistake of thinking just because the charge was dismissed, they were found not guilty or if they’ve served their sentence, their records will be automatically cleared. Without an expungement, this does not happen.
Do You Need to Talk to Tim?
Do you need to speak with an attorney who has experience representing students charged with criminal activities? Tim’s office phone number is (502) 589-6916. You can learn more via TimDenisonLaw.com. Tim’s principal office is located at: 235 South 5th St., Third Floor, Louisville, KY 40202. The information from this podcast is for informational purposes only and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Co-host Jim Ray is a non-attorney spokesperson. This is an attorney advertisement.