Marijuana And Driving  – Intoxicated or Not?

Marijuana and driving may be the next big drunk driving issue within the United States, which is due to the passage of many laws allowing for the drug’s use for either recreation or medicinal purposes. It is interesting for individual’s who qualify for protection under the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (known as MMMA), while it is per say illegal for general recreational users of marijuana when they are found to be driving or operating a motor vehicle. This means that if marijuana or THC is found within an individual’s system they will automatically be determined to be intoxicated even if they are not high. This is different for MMMA Patients. The reasoning for this is the MMMA and the decision opined in People v Koon.

However, the protection afforded by the MMMA and interpreted in Koon is not absolute, and thus individual’s need to understand what it takes in order to be convicted of drunk driving while using marijuana and being an MMMA patient.

Even the scientific and forensic communities are not certain about the correlation between marijuana and driving habits, issues or inferiorities. In fact, there are discrepancies in studies when attempting to determine whether or not there is an actual correlation between being intoxicated by marijuana and driving a motor vehicle, i.e. is your ability to operate a car effected when your high?

I recently scribed an article attempting to explain and outline the difficultes in detecting a level of intoxication that was indicative of an individual being high because of marijuana while driving a motor vehicle. If you are interested in the topic of marijuana and driving under the influence of the substance please read “Marijuana And Driving In Michigan: Identifying Intoxication.”

IT IS IMPERATIVE TO ALWAYS REMEMBER TO NEVER USE ANY OPINION, STATETMENT OR OTHERWISE POSTED ON THIS WEBSITE [OR ANY OTHER WEBSITE] WHEN ATTEMPTING OR TRYING TO REPRESENT ONE’S SELF IN A COURT OF LAW. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS OBTAIN PUBLIC OR PRIVATE REPRESENTATION WHEN INVOLVING IN ANY CRIMINAL OR CIVIL COURT MATTER. KNOW THE LAW, MAINTAIN YOUR RIGHTS AND LAWYER-UP. 

Firearm Satefy Flier JPG

FIREARM SAFETY TIPS POSTER

This firearm safety tips poster has been created in order for individual to know some of the most basic firearm safety tips so that they can prevent harm to themselves and others. Firearms are dangerous, yet they are used on a daily basis for protection and recreational purposes. Firearm safety tips are forever, whether you are carrying a concealed weapon or a rifle during hunting season.

It is better to be safe than sorry because when handling firearms being sory could mean death, which could mean criminal charges. Therefore, anytime you are handling or using a firearm make sure to follow this basic firearm safety tips. They could mean the difference between life and death. Of course, this firearms safety tips poster does not provide every policy that an individual should follow when using a firearm; however, the following ten (10) tips can make a difference in numerous situations involving firearms.

Remember, that depending upon the situation you could see yourself involved in criminal charges when using or possessing a firearm. Michigan does have favorable firearm laws; however, they are not exclusive to every individual in every situation. Therefore, not only should you be aware of the above firearm safety tips, but also when you are and are not allowed to possess or use a firearm. They are dangerou because they can injure and kill, but they are also dangerous with regard to the potential risk and punishments that an individual could face in a given situation that involves a firearm.

Josh Jones handles all Michigan criminal misdemeanors and felonies, criminal expungements, probations violations, and specializes in marijuana defense (medical and non-medical). Contact him 7-days a week.

REMEMBER, NEVER RELY ON INFORMATION OBTAIN ON THE INTERNET WHEN ATTEMPTING OR WANTING TO DEFEND YOURSELF IN A COURT OF LAW OR IN ANY SITUATION INVOLVING A LEGAL MATTER WITHOUT FIRST CONTACTING, DISCUSSING AND RETAINING LEGAL COUNSEL. THIS INCLUDES ALL INFORMATION FOUND ON THIS WEBSITE OR ANY OTHER LEGAL OPINION WEBSITE ON THE INTERNET.

 

 

Marihuana.Tip.Flier copy

MEDICAL MARIJUANA TIPS – FOR YOUR SAFETY

This marijuana tips flier, poster or card was made for individuals who are medical marijuana patients and caregivers. It was created in order to provide you with vital and important information dealing with medical marihuana here in the State of Michigan. Knowing the law then maintaining your rights can and will impact your case so that when you lawyer-up you are in the best situation you can be. Following these basic medical marijuana tips can held you smoke carefree.

Josh Jones understands the Michigan Medical Marijuana law, and this is the reason he believes that this medical marijuana tips poster can assist you when you are approached or confronted with law enforcement. This medical marijuana tips poster outlines the basic criminal and constitutional rights that you maintain when you are involved with law enfrocement activities and investigations whether they are in the home, on the street, or in a motor vehicle. It is beyond important to exercise your constitutional rights, and thus knowing them becomes the first step.

Michigan has an ever changing medical marijuana law, which is why it is imperative to remember your basic constitutional rights. This Medical Marijuana tips poster will assist in that. It is important to not solely rely on these medical marijuana tips if trying or wanting to defend yourself in a court of law or other proceeding or legal situation. Therefore, you should always see a marijuana defense lawyer whenever you are involved or charged with criminal acts or incidences. However, if you keep the basic principles of the Medical Marijuana tips poster in mind you will be assisting yourself when and if you are criminally charged.

Please, download, share, print and save these Michigan Medical Marijuana Tips, so that you can smoke carefree. Josh Jones hopes that these Michigan Medical Marihuana Tips will assist medical marijuana patients and caregivers throughout the State of Michigan. You can contact Josh Jones 7-days a week. He always has your back, and is your Michigan Marijuana Lawyer.

What Is The Vehicle Search Exception?

Once an individual motorist has been pulled over and the police officer has probable cause to perform a vehicle search a warrant will not be necessary in order to actually vehicle search. This is known as the Motor Vehicle Search Exception to the Fourth Amendment’s requirement of first obtaining a search warrant. The reasoning for such a rule is because of the easy ability for a vehicle to be readily mobile.

The rule generally states that an officer is allowed to perform a vehicle search of all compartments and areas of a vehicle, without the need for a warrant, if there is probable cause to believe that the particular area to be searched contains contraband. This can occur if the contraband is viewed in plain sight, meaning as the officer is near the vehicle and sees the contraband then he or she will have probable cause to search the vehicle. Moreover, this rule does not stop a police officer from performing a vehicle search of the passengers of the vehicle when the individual to be searched has the ability to conceal or hold the suspected contraband.

Michigan law explains that a police officer will have probable cause to perform vehicle search if he or she smells marijuana coming from the vehicle. However, it can and should be argued that if a police searches the passenger compartment of a vehicle, because he or she smelled burnt marijuana, yet did not discover any contraband during the search then he or she may be precluded from searching the trunk compartment of the vehicle. Michigan courts have yet to answer this specific question; on the other hand, the United States Supreme court does have precedent indicating that an officer may not continue the vehicle search when he or she has come up empty handed.

PLEASE DO NOT RELY upon any of the information contained in this article when trying or attempting to represent yourself in court. You should always consult with an attorney before relying upon any written advice, article, blog etc.

Josh Jones is here for all your criminal matters (whether felonies or misdemeanors) and all your marijuana matters (both medical and non-medical). Call Josh Jones today when you are involved with a vehicle search here in the State of Michigan.

THE MICHIGAN CRIMINAL PROCESS

THE ARREST

The Michigan criminal process begins with the arrest, generally. In order to properly arrest, the police must have probable cause that a crime was committed. Probable cause is reasonable belief that you (the defendant) committed a crime.

Warrants are not required in order to arrest individuals, yet they are required prior to a “search,” sometimes. The following exceptions apply requiring no warrant or the establishment of probable cause to allow for a warrantless search:

1. Incident to (or after) a valid arrest; however, you may be patted down for weapons.
2. Exigent Circumstances—emergency situation; i.e. destruction of evidence of crime, police in hot pursuit, or threat of death or harm to an individual.
3. Plain View or Smell—no search occurs but criminal activity is discovered; i.e. seeing alcohol in motor vehicle from window, smelling burnt, fresh or other marihuana in vehicle
4. Consent to Search person, property, or residence—there is no requirement stating you must allow an officer to search if he or she does not have a valid warrant to do so.

IMPORTANT NOTE: after your arrest, yet prior to any interrogation, you must be advised of your rights. This includes the right to remain silent and to have legal counsel. These rights must be expressly stated and made by you (the defendant).

POST ARREST

After you are arrested and taken to the local jail you will proceed through the booking process ,which will include, but may not be limited to:

• Providing your name, address, phone number, etc.
• Fingerprinting
• Cataloguing of your personal property

The Jail will hold you for up-to 72-hours for that particular charge or citation. Within that period you may post bond, if it has been set; be released and cited with a citation; or be presented to a magistrate or judge.

IMPORTANT NOTE: You may be held in-custody longer depending on your current criminal status. Being able to post bond does or may not allow for you to be released from custody if you have outstanding warrants or other holds from other jurisdictions. A full consultation and review of the facts regarding your case by an attorney is in order to properly and effectively provide advise and explanation of any given case.

It is essential to obtain a criminal defense attorney immediately following any citation, release from custody, or pending criminal matter. Criminal convictions and charges can have life changes consequences. Know the law, maintain your rights, and lawyer-up with Josh Jones. He handles all felony and misdemeanor criminal matters and specializes in marihuana (medical or non-medical) matters.

COMMON CRIMINAL LAW TERMS

Arraignment – It is the first hearing within a criminal case and will occur at District Court. A second arraignment will occur in all felonies matters, yet it will occur at the Circuit Court. The main two focuses of the arraignment are the amount of bond and the type of plea to be entered. A plea consists of one of the following:

• Guilty—an admission of guilt and statement of facts pertaining to the crime being admitted too.
• Not Guilty—a denial of the crime and the charges stated.
• No Contest—neither admitting guilt nor disputing the facts and charges.
• Standing Mute—no admission of the correctness of the charges; i.e. asserting you are standing mute and understand the charges pending against you.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Never plead guilty at an arraignment, and instead assert a not guilty or stand mute plea. You have that right and the right to obtain counsel, so lawyer-up. ALWAYS consult an attorney prior to pleading guilty or no-contest to any and all crimes. You may not know the consequences of such a plea.

Plea Agreement – The formal agreement between the parties, which identifies the charges sought to be plead to and possible sentencing agreement. These will vary from case to case.

Trial – The formal hearing determining guilt. Here there will be testimony and the presentation of evidence presented to the Jury (or a Judge if a Jury Trial is waived).

Sentencing – This will occur after a plea or trial (when the verdict is guilty). Here the Judge will determine the appropriate sentence or punishment to render, which will be based upon a number or factors including statutory rule, a probation recommendation, or other facts or evidence presented during such a hearing.

Verdict – The rendering of judgment by the Jury (or Judge), which will either be innocent or guilty.

Appeal – In the State of Michigan, a Defendant generally has 42 days from the judgment to file an appeal. There are two kinds of appeals: by right or by leave. The Judge will state such on the record at the time of plea or trial.

Please, do not rely on this information when or if attempting to represent yourself in a criminal court. This is not meant to replace counsel, and you should always lawyer-up when you are facing any criminal charges here in the State of Michigan. Josh Jones maintains a full-service Criminal Defense law firm, and specializes in Marijuana law, so call him today if you are involved in the Michigan Criminal Process.

Stop and Frisk or Pat Down – When Can It Occur?

A police officer has three opportunities to perform a search (or a stop and frisk or pat down) on an individual:

(1) A Search Warrant,

(2) Consent, or

(3) A Search After Arrest.

All three ways or opportunities to search are fairly straight-forward. However, each way has possible defenses, which can in-turn affect the ultimate outcome of the legality of the search performed.

But this article is not here to explain those three ways to perform a search on a person; rather, what I will discuss is when a Stop and Frisk or pat down can occur. It has been determined and found that this brief detention and limited “search” does not violate an individual’s right to privacy.

The United States Supreme Court has explained police are legally allowed to stop an individual and briefly detain you to inquire about name and address (or identification). To hold an individual longer or not allow them to leave would be construed as a custodial detention, and thus begin the invocation of privacy rights (such as the right against self-incrimination). This also brings about the requirement of Miranda Warnings. This can be a complex area of the law; therefore, it is advisable to simply provide your name and address, proceed to end the conversation, and if you are not free to leave invoke your rights to counsel and silence.

But what about a Terry Stop and Frisk or Pat Down? The truth is a Terry Stop and Frisk or Pat Down can only occur if the police are able to articulate reasonable suspicion that you are carrying a weapon. This is a very low threshold; however, merely stating a need of safety without being able to articulate facts indicating a present danger is not enough to perform a Stop and Frisk or Pat Down.

If the officers insist on searching you DO NOT RESIST. Simply and calmly state that you do not consent to the search (Stop and Frisk or Pat Down). Make your refusal known, but do not create more problems with the officer.

Following these tips will provide counsel with the best possible outcome when it comes to conduct that leads to police encounters. Know the law, maintain your rights, and lawyer-up with Josh Jones. He provides a full-service criminal defense law firm, specializing in marijuana laws.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR REPLACE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST ALWAYS CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. ALWAYS LAWYER-UP.

New Preliminary Roadside Analysis – Drunk Driving Law Update

Effective January 12, 2015, the State of Michigan will have a new law controlling drunk driving cases. Governer Synder signed the bill October 14, 2015. The new law amends the pre-existing drunk driving statute, changing the way arrests can and will be performed here in Michigan. The new law creates a new term known as “preliminary roadside analysis.”

It seems, after reading the newly enacted statute, that this preliminary roadside analysis will replaced field sobriety tests and roadside preliminary breathe tests. The new law allows the officer to choose which investigative techinque to pursue within a drunk driving case by use of the preliminary roadside analysis. Furthermore, and an additional change to the pre-existing law, the refusal of a preliminary roadside analysis is not unlawful and an individual can be additionally charged for the refusal.

Pre-existing law only allows an officer to require a person only to submit to a preliminary roadside breathe test if the officer had reasonable cause to believe that the person was operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated or impaired. However, the new law expands the requirement new “preliminary roadside analysis” term and essentially replacing the term “preliminary chemical breath test”.

The new law and term (preliminary roadside analysis) applies to all forms of drunk driving cases and is used for investigating whether the individual is operating the motor vehicle under:

(a) Alcoholic liquor.

(b) A controlled substance, as that term is defined in section 7104 of the public health code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.7104.

(c) Any other intoxicating substance, as that term is defined in section 625.

(d) Any combination of the substances listed in subdivisions (a) to (c).

It is apparent that the new law signficantly changes the course of events and circumstances that will now occur within drunk driving case. Under pre-existing, field sobriety tests were used in part to obtains facts to support a “reasonable cause” determination, which is then used to allow the police to search to request a preliminary breath test. Technically speaking, this new term and law takes away the need to first obtain reasonable cause before providing a roadside preliminary breathe test.

Furthermore under pre-existing law, an officer must advise the driver that failure to take a preliminary breath test is a violation of Michigan law, so the driver can then make a choice to take such a test or risk the punishment for refusal. However, this leads to questions that must be answered at some point in time, such as  “must the officer advise of such pentaly under the new law?” or “if the driver refuses to submit to preliminary roadside analysis will this be admissible before a jury?”

Ultimately, these questions and many more will not be answered until the new law becomes effective and the first drunk driver is arrested under the new law. It will be interesting to see how these matters will be handled by officers and the court system. Various issues will arise, which means that a criminal defense attorney will become even more necessary. Remember, know the law, maintain your rights, and lawyer-up. Josh Jones has your back 7-days a week and is only a phone call away. Call today for your free consultation.

Stop And Frisk Searches By Police Officers – United States v Noble Explained

On August 8, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals in the 6th Circuit, in United States v Noble, explained the limits and constraints place on an officer when he chooses to perform a Terry Stop and frisk searches on individuals. The Court explained that only in situations where the officer performing stop and frisk searches are able to reasonable articule suspicion of the individual concealing or carrying a dangerous weapon can the officer legally and consitutionally perform a Terry Stop and frisk on an individual.

The facts involved in the Noble case presented a scenario where local police were requested, by the DEA, to perform a traffic stop on a particular vehicle. The defendant was sitting in the passenger seat at the time of the traffic stop, and after the driver consented to the search of the vehicle both driver and defendant-passenger exited the vehicle. Prior to the search, one of the officers noticed the defendant seemed nervous and upon exiting the vehicle determined it was proper to perform a frisk of the defendant in order to ensure the officer’s safety. During the frisk search the officer located several baggies of narcotics, narcotic paraphernalia, and a hand-gun.  The defendant was subsequently arrested and eventually came-forth the matter to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The Court in Noble explained that Police Officer must remember that there is no general safety rule or exception to the warrant requirement, even when stop and frisk searches are performed. An Officer may rely on his or her own personal experience and training when determining whether there is reasonably articulable suspicion that an individual may be concealing or carrying a dangerous weapon. Even more, the assumption that individual’s involved in drug-trafficing or smuggling are or could be possessing a dangerous weapon is very real; however, in order to perform legal stop and frisk searches of an individual in such a situation, as the one involved in this case, some corroboration must be made linking the individual to be frisk searched to the activity of drug-dealing or trafficing.

Therefore, the Court in Noble went on to conclude and explain that the individual defendant in that particular case was searched illegally. There were no facts indicating that the defendant was involved in drug-dealing, and whats more even the driver was not positively identified as the individual the DEA had been watching. This case reiterates long-standing case precedent involving Terry Stop and Frisk searches. It is so essnetial to know the law, maintain your rights, and lawyer-up whenever you are facing a criminal charge (misdemeanor or felony).

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

PROSTITUTION SOLICITING AND ACCOSTING FOR IMMORAL PURPOSES

Selling yourself or your body for sex has been a long standing crime in the State of Michigan and most of the United States. The term, as you may know, for selling ones self for sex is prostitution soliciting and accosting. It is also known as prostitution soliciting or accosting for an immoral act. See MCL 750.448. In order to be convicted the act, gesture, statement, or any other means to commit prostitution while in a public place, public building, or in a vehicle.

The statute means that an exchange for money does not need to occur in order to be convicted of the crime. Moreover, sex also does not actually have to occur. This means that an individual can be charged and arrested for prostitution by simply making a gesture that suggests he or she is enticing another to engage in his or her serves of sexual gratification.

In some instances a prostitution soliciting and accosting charge will be pled down to a disorderly conduct (common prostitute) charge. This is not always guaranteed; however, they can be common in cases where the individual charged has no record and other positive attributes in his or her life. On the other hand, some counties in Michigan make it a policy decision not to deal with individuals charged with prostitution soliciting and accosting for immoral purposes.

As an individual racks up more prostitution soliciting and accosting charges on his or her criminal record the possible punishment for the crime increases. It begins as a 93-day misdemeanor, attaching a $500.00 fine or both, and the maximum for an individual with 2 or more prior convictions under MCL 750.448 is a 2-year felony punishable by a $2,000.00 fine or both. See MCL 750.451.

In the end, it is best to contact and hire and attorney for this charge. It allows for the negotiations to be fair, straightforward, and judicial. Josh Jones has your back and is here for you 7-days a week at 734-355-0424 and 810-691-7308.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. LAWYER-UP.

What is Michigan Consecutive Sentencing?

Michigan Consecutive Sentencing involves the stacking of felony convictions and sentencing judgments on top of one another. For example, if Bill was sentenced on two counts of distribution to 5 months for each count to run consecutively then Bill would have to serve 10 months in jail.

Enforcement of Michigan Consecutive Sentencing

Michigan consecutive sentencing is mandatory for a felony firearm charge; when a prisoner escapes or attempts to escape from prison; when a prisoner escapes or attempts to escape from jail while serving a felony sentence or awaiting disposition on a felony charge; when a person on parole commits a new felony and is convicted and sentenced to a term of imprisonment; when a person who has been charged with a felony commits a major controlled substance offense while the first felony charge is pending; and when an inmate commits a crime during incarceration or as an escapee and the new crime is punishable by prison.

Michigan consecutive sentencing is possible when a person who has been charged with a felony commits another felony while the first felony charge is pending; when a term of imprisonment is imposed for any other offense arising from the same transaction as to first-degree home invasion; for carjacking or for any other sentence imposed for a conviction that arises out of the same transaction; for attempting to influence a juror; for bribing a witness; for using a computer to commit a crime; for committing a crime against a vulnerable adult; for committing identity theft; for having separate convictions under the Medicaid False Claims Act; and for taking a weapon from a police or corrections officer or for any term of imprisonment imposed for another violation arising from the same transaction.

It is important to understand all of the consequences when determining whether you want to accept a plea agreement or take the matter to trial. Michigan consecutive sentencing can and does occur from time-to-time. Make sure you have the right counsel handling your criminal matter.

Whenever you are faced with a criminal misdemeanor or felony you need counsel who always has your back. Contact Josh Joens 7-days a week. He maintains a full-service criminal defense law firm, specializing in Marihuana Defense.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.