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Dayton Family Law And Criminal Defense Blog

Hactivism may have good intentions but it's still illegal

Activists who wanted to make a point or have an effect on society used to have to take to the streets in public protest or haunt congressional floors -- now they often sit behind computers and look for ways to stop corruption by exposing the secrets hidden inside personal, corporate and governmental computers.

For example, the group of cyber activists known collectively as "Anonymous" has exposed thousands of corporate and government documents that never would have seen the light of day otherwise. This type of activity has been called "hactivism," and it's illegal. Anytime you gain unauthorized access to someone else's computer it's a crime, even if you think that you are doing the right thing.

The 'fun' of binge drinking can have serious consequences

A young driver who has been engaged in binge drinking before getting behind the wheel will obviously be a threat to other motorists. If a police officer arrests the driver for frunk driving or underage drinking and driving, the person will face stiff penalties. However, it may be a blessing in disguise, considering other possible consequences of drunk driving.

The accused, who will need representation by an experienced defense attorney, may well find this brush with the law to be a sobering experience.

High-profile drunk driving defendants face tough time in court

Does being a public figure make fighting the charge of operating a vehicle while under the influence (OVI) of alcohol or drugs harder?

Quite probably. In Butler county alone, there have been three high-profile OVI cases recently. One involved Middletown's Fire Chief, one involved Ohio Representative Wes Retherford, and the last involved a West Chester police officer. All three are public figures who are expected to set an example for others.

4 reminders about survivor benefit plans and military divorces

Survivor benefit plan (SBP) coverage is one area of military divorces that can be particularly confusing -- but it's incredibly important to make sure that you understand what needs to be done to enforce the SBP coverage. Otherwise, the SBP award may lapse, and it cannot be reinstated.

What are the most important things to keep in mind about SBP coverage after divorce?

Can a judge reject the plea deal you made with the prosecution?

Many people who are faced with the possibility of a lengthy trial, a longer incarceration and the loss of their personal and professional reputation as details of their activities become public knowledge, choose to accept a plea deal rather than take their case to trial. It's important to understand, however, that plea deals aren't always honored by the judge.

If the prosecution and the defendant can come to an agreement on what equals a fair sentence, why would a judge impose a different one?

Don't be intimidated into a plea deal that's unfair

Since the 1980's, when the United States starting seeing the introduction of mandatory minimum sentences and "tough on crime" laws, there's been a steady transference of power away from the judges and the nation's people—and directly into the hands of the nation's prosecutors.

This had lead to a legal system that's increasingly slanted against defendants, so much so that barely any now go to trial. In 1980, 19 percent of federal defendants went to trial. By 2010, less than 3 percent went to trial, and the numbers have hovered there ever since.

Drunk, drugged and behind the wheel: Ohio's growing problem

Summit county, home to Akron University and some of Ohio's major employers, saw a spike in the number of fatal vehicle crashes involving drivers under the influence of either drugs or alcohol.

In 2016, more than half of the 40 fatal accidents in the county were related to drivers operating under the influence of a mind-altering substance. Out of those 21 cases, 12 were attributed to drugs, not alcohol.

Pump and dump scams can catch even the experienced up in the hype

Penny stocks are a great way for beginning investors to practice trading without risking more than a few dollars—and, if you're lucky, some of the investments might even be profitable in the long run.

Unfortunately, penny stocks are also a perfect vehicle for "pump and dump" investment scams, a type of stock fraud that preys on the unwary.

Private citizens can be charged with public corruption

The Hobbs Act is a federal law often used in connection with cases whenever a public official is said to be involved with corruption while acting under the color of official right.

What exactly does that mean?

Alcohol can give drivers a false sense of confidence

You have probably been to a social function where certain guests feel confident about their ability to drive despite having had a few drinks. One of the reasons for this is that everyone reacts to alcohol differently depending on their physiological makeup. While one person may not appear to be affected by having a glass of wine, someone else may feel dizzy or giddy and become sleepy or overly talkative. It only takes a few drinks to exceed the legal limit of 0.08 percent blood-alcohol content (BAC), but many experts feel there is cause for the legal threshold to be lowered.

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