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If you've watched just about any mob movie in the last 30 years or so, you've heard the phrase "witness protection program." It either involves a former gangster going in (like the end of Goodfellas) or comically navigating his new life (like My Blue Heaven). There are all kinds of conditions like changing names and moving to the suburbs, and always the risk of whomever the gangster is testifying against hunting them down.

But how does witness protection actually work? Here's a look.

Parents do their best to keep their kids out of trouble. Sadly, the best isn't always good enough. For a multitude of reasons, children can turn to rebellious, illegal activities during their teenage years, even going so far as to join gangs.

If those gangs are engaged in criminal activity, parents should rightly be concerned, not only for their teens' criminal liability but for their own. Here's what you need to know.

Drug addiction can be tragic, and can take a personal toll on addicts and their families. And when the addiction spills over into the criminal realm, it can impact their communities as well. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, almost a quarter of prisoners incarcerated on property and drug crimes say they committed their current offense to obtain money for drugs.

Here are some of the most common crimes drug addicts commit, aside from the general, addiction-funding property crimes:

Dear diary,

Today I learned that you could one day stab me in the back.

There's no doubt that writing about your problems, like talking about them, is therapeutic. However, you may want to think about drawing the line when it comes to confessing crimes to your diary.

While you don't have to worry about your diary calling the police to report you, if you are arrested and your diary is discovered during a valid search, it can be used against you as evidence in court. Also, as one teen recently learned, if you live with roommates, or family, there's likely to be no Fourth Amendment protection against your privacy being invaded if one of them reads your diary and reports you to law enforcement.

For many gun owners, the reason for purchasing a firearm is to keep your family and property safe. And trespassing is against the law. Still, police are pretty adamant that citizens not take the law into their own hands.

So what happens if you have a gun and you have a trespasser on your property? Are you allowed to point your gun at that trespasser?

For better or worse, the presumption of innocence rests in large part on appearances. And the appearance of a defendant in court, shackled "like a bear on a chain," can undermine that presumption. Therefore, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that lower courts may no longer routinely of shackle all pretrial detainees in the courtroom, even if there is no jury present.

Instead, courts will need to make assessments on a case-by-case basis as to whether a defendant must be shackled. So what will that analysis entail? And what will that mean for criminal defendants?

A Florida man has been sentenced to 180 days in jail for failing to give police a working passcode to his iPhone. A judge had issued a warrant to search the phone as part of a child abuse investigation, and when the passcode provided by the man didn't work, the judge held him in contempt.

The case highlights privacy interests and search and seizure rules in the age of mobile device storage and access to digital files and data, and why defendants might be better off forgetting their passwords than refusing to give them over.

Being charged with a crime is scary. Even the most minor crimes, including traffic violations, can cause serious life disruption. Most defendants get some comfort from retaining an experienced defense attorney, though some may feel that they need a whole team of lawyers.

Generally, depending on the severity of the criminal charges, a person won't need a team of lawyers. However, in some circumstances, an individual may need more than one type of lawyer, or may actually need a team working round the clock.

The penalty for criminal hit and run charges can be much more severe than many people expect. In some jurisdictions, serious jail time can be on the table. That's especially true if a defendant was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or caused an injury.

However, in the heat of the moment, people are prone to make bad judgment calls. Frequently, people flee the scene of an accident because they are afraid of the consequences. Unfortunately for those people, fleeing the scene of an accident amplifies the consequences from potentially only financial to criminal. And because cars all have license plates on them, tracking down a hit and run driver is often simpler than expected.

If you've been charged with a hit and run, below you'll find three of the most effective defenses that may apply to your case.

Investigations, criminal and otherwise, need cooperative witnesses to supply evidence. In some cases, that assistance is forthcoming -- people report crimes, testify against defendants, or hand over DNA, documents, and other physical evidence. In other cases, witnesses are a little more reluctant.

Take the case of retired Lt. General Michael Flynn, President Trump's former national security adviser and center of two investigations (one congressional and one criminal) into the Trump campaign's contact with Russia before and after the 2016 presidential election. Flynn is not eager to testify in front of Congress, so the Senate Intelligence Committee issued a subpoena for his testimony and related documents. Flynn, through his lawyers, politely declined the request. So what happens now?