FindLaw Blotter - The Findlaw Crime and Criminals Blog

FindLaw Blotter - Crime Blog - Crime News - The FindLaw Crime and Criminals Blog


Any time you are arrested for suspected DUI, your constitutional rights may come in to play.

Regardless of what state you are arrested in, any person in police custody is guaranteed certain rights by the U.S. Constitution. Many of these rights are often recounted by police at the time of the arrest through what is commonly known as a Miranda warning, which advises those arrested on their "right to remain silent."

But what else does the Constitution guarantee for those arrested for an alleged DUI? Here are three constitutional rights you should know:

A Tennessee dad has been arrested after he allegedly forced his 15-year-old son to drink alcohol until he passed out unconscious, as punishment for being caught drinking.

Mark Hughes, 35, has been charged with aggravated child abuse and neglect in addition to contributing to the delinquency of a child. According to East Tennessee's WBIR-TV, witnesses told police that Hughes forced his teen son to play a drinking game with him during Saturday's Tennessee football game after he caught the boy drinking.

What was this father thinking?

Using physical force to discipline your children, such as spanking, is generally legal in most states as long as it's done reasonably.

But what about the use of implements to discipline a child, such as a belt or a "switch," as a tree branch stripped of its leaves is called in some parts of the country? NFL star Adrian Peterson was indicted on child abuse charges last week in Texas after it was discovered he had disciplined his four-year-old son using a switch.

When, if ever, is it legal to use a switch to discipline your kids?

Parolees and probationers are required to check in with their supervising officers as part of the conditions of their release. However, inevitably some of these individuals will fail to meet with their POs, triggering some nasty legal consequences.

Going AWOL on your probation or parole officer could mean going back to jail or prison, unless you have a very good reason for why you failed to report.

So what can happen if you fail to check in with your probation or parole officer?

Tomorrow is Constitution Day, which commemorates the signing of the U.S. Constitution on September 17, 1787. What does the Constitution have to do with criminal law?

Not everyone is familiar with the specific rights guaranteed by the Constitution's Bill of Rights. Fortunately, if you are arrested or accused of a crime, you're entitled to these rights, whether you know them or not. That being said, knowing your rights will help you determine when they are being violated.

Which constitutional amendments should you know if you're being accused of a crime? You're probably familiar with your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent, but here are three more:

When police ask you to identify yourself, what are your legal options?

In the most practical sense, refusing to identify yourself seems like a surefire way to get on a cop's bad side. Just ask "Django Unchained" actress Daniele Watts, who was cuffed on Thursday after refusing to identify herself to the LAPD (she was not arrested, however).

You may believe that your privacy rights allow you to walk the street anonymously, but is that true in all situations? Here's what you need to know about when you can refuse to identify yourself to police officers:

If you're charged with a drug crime, you could always choose to go it alone as a pro se defendant or take the public defender who may be provided to you by the court.

However, you may also choose to work with a criminal defense attorney who's particularly knowledgeable about handling drug crimes, such as the offense you are being charged with. What makes hiring a drug crimes lawyer worth the money?

Here are five things a drug crimes lawyer can do that you probably can't:

College is, among other things, a place for learning. But the lessons to be learned in college aren't all contained in textbooks or lectures; they're sometimes learned the proverbial "hard way." And what harder way to learn the limits of socially acceptable behavior than to be arrested?

Here are 10 really dumb ways that college students can get themselves arrested:

Confidential informants ("CIs") often provide law enforcement and prosecutors with valuable evidence that can lead to arrests and even convictions of criminal suspects.

However, very few CIs have a clean criminal record, and many of them are "flipped" by law enforcement to avoid harsher punishment for their own crimes. So how can a court find a CI's testimony to be credible?

There must be some legal guarantee that a CI's info is good. Here are five common factors courts will consider in judging the credibility of a confidential informant:

A video posted by a California woman on YouTube documenting the antics of her "neighbors from hell" has led to DUI and an assortment of other criminal charges against the woman shown in the video.

Huntington Beach resident Sarah Oliver posted the video -- which appears to show her neighbor Laura Angela Cox in a violent confrontation with her boyfriend -- on Sunday to YouTube, where it quickly went viral, racking up over 2 million views in less than four days. Meantime, Cox had already been arrested by Huntington Beach police, reports KTLA-TV.

What sort of legal trouble is Cox facing for her turn as an Internet video superstar?