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Visiting Minnesota? Check Out These Crazy State Laws!

September 20, 2015

Every state in the United States has crazy state laws that are outdated, useless, or simply comical. The state of Minnesota is no exception; although several of the state’s “craziest” laws have been proven fictitious, there are still several authentic strange state laws that have remained in effect in both state and local legislation. Keep reading to learn more about just a few of the crazy laws you might encounter when visiting the state of Minnesota.

Bingo Limits

Charitable gambling has been legal in the state of Minnesota since 1945. However, the state laws originally in place to regulate such gambling restricted nursing homes and senior centers to only two days of bingo per week. Furthermore, individuals visiting friends or family in nursing homes and senior centers were prohibited from participating in bingo events. This crazy state law remained in effect until it was recently overturned this year.

Public Drunkenness

Although most crazy laws appear to be historical in nature, a law enacted as recently as 2010 states that “No person may be charged with or convicted of the offense of drunkenness or public drunkenness.” Thus, public drunkenness is not considered a punishable offense of any sort in Minnesota.

Mosquito Nuisances

Mosquitoes are a common and widespread nuisance in much of the United States. In Minnesota, state law declares that areas where mosquitoes are incubated or hatched are considered a “public nuisance” and may be subject to governmental pest abatement as overseen by an established mosquito abatement board.

Despite the fact that these crazy state laws exist, the vast majority of state laws remain important and relevant in modern times. If you have legal questions about criminal charges you are facing in Arizona, Tucson Attorney Janet Altschuler can help—you can reach our law firm by calling (520) 829-1741, or contact us or toll-free at (866) 377-7808. You’ll also find more information about our criminal defense services when you visit us on the web.

This article is part of a collection of The Most Ridiculous Laws in the United States! Some of these laws are downright hard to believe. Do you know what might be illegal in your state?

ridiculouslaws

What You Should Know About Medical Marijuana Laws in Arizona

September 15, 2015

The marijuana plant contains chemicals called cannabinoids, which have been proven effective in the treatment of a variety of medical conditions and the symptoms they cause. In the state of Arizona, the possession of marijuana for medical purposes is legal under certain circumstances. Understanding medical marijuana laws in Arizona and how they may affect you can help you prevent an erroneous charge of drug possession.

Possession Purposes and Limits

Arizona state law limits the amount of medical marijuana an individual may possess at any given time, as well as restricts the medical conditions for which it may be used. An individual may legally possess up to 2.5 ounces of medical marijuana at one time. The use of medical marijuana is approved for qualifying conditions that include Alzheimer’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, Crohn’s disease, cachexia, cancer, chronic pain syndromes, glaucoma, hepatitis C, HIV and AIDS, post-traumatic stress disorder, seizures, nausea, and persistent muscle spasms.

Marijuana Dispensation and Cultivation

In addition to restricting the use of medical marijuana, Arizona state law also governs the dispensation and cultivation of this drug. Medical marijuana may be dispensed by state-licensed dispensary facilities on a not-for-profit basis. Patients who live more than 25 miles from the nearest state-licensed dispensary are authorized to cultivate marijuana at home for medical purposes. Home cultivation of medical marijuana is limited to 12 or fewer plants that are kept in an “enclosed, locked facility” to prevent unauthorized or illegal access.

A drug possession charge or conviction can negatively affect your life in many ways. If you are facing a drug possession charge in Tucson, Attorney Janet Altschuler is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide the help you need. You can reach our law firm to schedule an appointment by calling (520) 247-1789 or our toll-free line at (866) 377-7808

What Drivers Should Do When Pulled Over on Suspicion of DUI

August 31, 2015

If arrested for a DUI in Arizona, you are required to submit to a blood, breath, or urine test because of Arizona’s implied consent law. According to Arizona law, if the arresting officer has reasonable grounds to believe you are driving while under the influence, you consent to taking a chemical test. Additionally, the arresting officer gets to choose which test you take.

Submitting to the test

Even if you aren’t driving, you may be required to submit to a chemical test. In fact, an officer can arrest you for suspicion of DUI, so long as you were in actual, physical control of the vehicle. This generally means you have the ability to make the car move. For example, if you are under the influence and pull over to sleep in your car, you may be charged with DUI if you leave the motor running to keep the air conditioning on. If you refuse the test, the officer will require you to surrender your license and will file a report for a license suspension up to twelve months.  

Refusing the test

Though the officer will take your license for refusing a chemical test, you will receive a temporary driving permit good for fifteen days. The officer will then submit a sworn report explaining that there were reasonable grounds to believe you were driving under the influence. If this was your first refusal, then your license suspension will only last a year.

Understanding the consequences

Refusing a blood, breath or urine test is unlikely to help you when arrested for a DUI. However, in Arizona, the consequences of refusal are milder than those for a DUI conviction, which include jail time and fines. In fact, you may be found guilty for a DUI even if the state doesn’t have proof your BAC was more than 0.08 percent.

Attorney Janet Altschuler can handle your Arizona criminal defense from start to finish. We offer careful guidance from an advocate you can trust. To schedule a free initial consultation, please call (520) 829-1741.

Crazy Laws: Weirdly Illegal Acts in Arizona

August 13, 2015

Like many strange laws still on the books in Arizona, you can face criminal charges for cutting down a cactus. Arizona’s history dates back hundreds of years to the days of cowboys, and some of the laws have remained through the years. For example, it’s still illegal for cowboys to wear spurs inside a hotel lobby.

Refuse a glass of water

Perhaps one of Arizona’s most popular urban legends is that it is illegal to refuse someone a glass of water. Though everyone who grows up in Arizona considers this rumor to be true, no one can point to the governing statute. Indeed, there are plenty of Arizona laws regulating water. However, no laws referencing providing someone a class of water.

Protect yourself with the same weapon

If a criminal or burglar attacks you in Arizona, you may only protect yourself with the same weapon that he or she possesses—or so the legend goes. In reality, it’s difficult for Arizonans to believe this legend, as there are frequently stories of residents shooting home intruders. In fact, there are many situations in which you can shoot a burglar armed with nothing. This legendary law is a poor interpretation of the use-of-force continuum, which isn’t really a law in Arizona.

Six girls in a house

Another misconception of Arizona laws is that Maricopa County residents can’t have more than six girls live in a single house. This would make sorority houses around the county unlawful. If you familiarize yourself with Maricopa County zoning ordinances, you will find they don’t make any such claim.

Hunt camel

Though there is a story involving the law prohibiting camel hunting, there really isn’t such a law. However, any camel you do find in Arizona likely belongs to a circus or zoo. As a result, you should think twice before hunting said camel, even if it’s not technically illegal.

Attorney Janet Altschuler handles all types of criminal cases, including domestic violence, drunk driving and drug charges. Whether you are charged with a felony or misdemeanor in Tucson, Attorney Altschuler can help. You can reach us by calling (520) 829-1741.

This article is part of a collection of The Most Ridiculous Laws in the United States! Some of these laws are downright hard to believe. Do you know what might be illegal in your state?

ridiculouslaws

Looking at Common Drug Charges

August 7, 2015

Arizona law treats drug charges very seriously, as they can lead to prison time, permanent criminal record and tarnished reputation. When Arizona odds are stacked against you, it’s important to contact a Tucson defense lawyer who is familiar with the local system. Your Arizona drug attorney can also help you understand consequences you face under particular circumstances.

Arizona drug classifications

Charges and potential penalties for Arizona drug possession depend on the type of drug in question. In fact, the state has a very clear method of designating different drugs and prescribing specific penalties for those designations. For example, under Arizona law, controlled substances include dangerous drugs, narcotics and marijuana.

Possession of dangerous drugs

Dangerous drugs include methamphetamines, LSD, steroids, psilocybic mushrooms, mescalin, and ecstasy. If you are charged with possession of dangerous drugs, then you face Class One Misdemeanor charges. This results in up to six months in jail time and fines reaching $2,500. Possession of cocaine, heroin and oxycodone are considered Class Five Felony charges, which carry a potential 18-month prison sentence. Arizona marijuana laws are almost more complex than laws governing drugs considered more addictive and dangerous. For example, possession of less than two pounds is considered a Class Six Felony, which carries a potential year in prison.

Sentencing and penalties

If you’re charged with possession of a controlled substance, you may qualify for deferred prosecution. This allows the state to keep you out of jail while giving you a second chance. However, it isn’t available under all circumstances, so you should consult with a Tucson criminal lawyer about this option in your case. If deferred prosecution applies, the state will hold off prosecution you while you participate in a probationary term. If successful in deferred prosecution, then your original charges will be dropped. However, if you don’t complete probation, you will face prosecution for your drug charges.

Even drug crimes that seem minor can carry very serious consequences. If you’re facing drug charges in Arizona, defense lawyer Janet Altschuler can help. Call (520) 829-1741 to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your situation.

A Look at Crazy Laws in Idaho

August 5, 2015

Every state has its quirks, and Idaho is no exception. Over the years, Idaho legislators have passed a number of odd laws that are still on the books today. Here’s a closer look at some strange Idaho laws governing hunting, fishing, and even gifting chocolate to a sweetheart.

Fishing laws

With thousands of square miles of rivers and lakes, it’s no surprise that fishing is a famous Idahoan sport. However, the popularity of the sport has led to several laws ensuring Idaho residents exercise their fishing licenses correctly. For example, residents are not allowed to introduce foreign fish into the state’s waters, or fish with a net, electrical current, or dynamite. For local fishers, it is also illegal to fish off the back of a camel across the state. In Boise, it’s illegal to fish from the back of a giraffe.

Hunting laws

Hunting is another popular Idahoan sport, and like fishing, there are several laws governing hunters’ conduct. In particular, the state has passed a number of laws to ensure the sport is fairer for wildlife. For example, Idahoan hunters cannot hunt with a remote control over the Internet. However, the law does not address hunting with a remote control not over the Internet. It is also illegal to hunt from a helicopter, even if the helicopter isn’t flying.

Miscellaneous laws

Perhaps the most unusual Idaho law, the state makes it illegal for a man to give a woman a box of candy weighing more than fifty pounds. The state also passed two laws governing Election Day ballots. For example, someone who bets on the outcome of an election faces misdemeanor charges. It’s also illegal for someone to sell hard liquor on an election—though it’s unclear how often this law has been enforced.

Even a minor criminal charge can dramatically impact your life. Your criminal record is public information, which any future lenders and employers can access. If you’ve been charged with a crime in Arizona, schedule a free consultation with Janet Altschuler Criminal Defense Attorney by calling (520) 829-1741.

This article is part of a collection of The Most Ridiculous Laws in the United States! Some of these laws are downright hard to believe. Do you know what might be illegal in your state?

ridiculouslaws

Repealing Colorado’s Ban on Sunday Liquor Sales

July 26, 2015

Effective July 1, 2008, Colorado’s Senate Bill 82 officially lifted the ban on liquor sales on Sundays. This ended a sales ban that had been in effect since Prohibition days, which banned liquor stores from selling wine, beer, and other spirits on Sundays. In lifting the ban, Colorado became the 35th state to pass a law allowing Sunday spirit sales.

Bill history

Colorado’s lift on the ban of Sunday liquor sales represents the latest movement in a growing trend toward modernizing archaic alcohol laws across the United States. Since 2002, Colorado, along with 12 other states, has passed legislation to allow for Sunday liquor sales. When Governor Bill Ritter signed the bill on April 14, 2008, it effectively ended a 75-year prohibition against Sunday liquor sales in the state. However, legislators made it clear that the repeal of the Sunday liquor sale ban does not mean the state will be any less vigilant in fighting against underage drinking, alcohol abuse, and drunk driving.

Consumer benefit

When the bill passed, Colorado was one of 16 states still prohibiting Sunday alcohol sales. This restriction was imposed after the national repeal of Prohibition in the 1930s. Local retailers who favored staying open on Sundays petitioned Colorado legislators to make this change. In repealing the ban, Colorado joined its neighboring states of Arizona, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Wyoming—all of which now allow for Sunday spirits sales.

Bill opposition

Though lifting the ban has been fairly well received, some local retailers fought against the bill. Opponents cited the need of a day of rest for their employees. However, consumers widely favored the law and pushed for its passage, as it provides customers will greater convenience to shop on their own schedule.
With more than 17 years of experience in criminal law, Janet Altschuler Criminal Defense Attorney is committed to helping clients achieve the best results in their cases. To schedule a free consultation with a Tucson criminal defense attorney, please call (520) 829-1741. Attorney Altschuler will handle your Arizona criminal defense case from start to finish, never passing it on to a paralegal or assistant.

Pleas and Defenses for Embezzlement

July 20, 2015

In an embezzlement case, the accused has limited pleas and defenses available from the prosecution. However, the available defenses and pleas include: entrapment, good faith belief, lack of intent, nolo contendere, and expiration of the limitation period. For someone accused of the crime of embezzlement, meeting with a Tucson criminal defense attorney can help him or her understand which plea is most available.

Nolo contendere

When a defendant pleads nolo contendere to an embezzlement case, he or she is pleading neither guilt nor innocence. Instead, the defendant contests the case through his or her plea. It is then the court’s duty to assess the truth from the evidence the prosecution brings forward. However, nolo contendere is only pleadable with the court’s permission.

Expiration of statute of limitations

If the prosecution fails to initiate embezzlement proceedings within the statutory time period, then the accused has the available defense of limitation. However, certain states don’t consider the period of concealment of embezzlement when calculating the limitations period. It’s still important for the accused to remember that mere silence does not amount to concealment. Instead, concealment requires positive acts from the accused, which are meant to prevent discovery of his or her embezzlement. If the accused has partially paid for the embezzlement amount, then the statute of limitations begins to run from the date of the last payment.

Entrapment

The accused may only plead entrapment if he or she did not design the plan of committing embezzlement. As a result, someone accused of embezzlement must show that the owner actively urged the accused to embezzle the asset in order to accept the plea. Additionally, the accused is unable to plead absence of loss in an embezzlement case. This means the defendant cannot show that the victim could have avoided the loss through diligence.
Call (520) 829-1741 to schedule a free consultation with Janet Altschuler Criminal Defense Attorney. Attorney Altschuler has experience achieving success in criminal cases in front of judges and juries. Having practiced in Pima County Superior Court, Juvenile Court, Tucson City Court and Pima County Justice Court, she knows and understands the legal system throughout Southern Arizona.

What to Expect if You Violate Your Probation

July 15, 2015

Usually when a judge orders probation, he or she will provide a brief overview of the rules you must follow. This normally includes meeting with your probation officer on a regular basis, following all laws, and abstaining from drugs and alcohol. If you violate these rules, the consequences you face depend on many factors, including the severity of your violation and your probation violation history.

Warning

Your first probation violation usually results in a warning from your probation officer, as he or she may want to minimize the judge’s caseload, especially if your violation was not very serious. However, your probation officer will probably warn you of the consequences you face if you continue to violate probation. If you continue to follow the rules after this warning, then you shouldn’t have any further issues.

Community service

If your probation officer orders you to perform community service, it is meant to rehabilitate you or correct your behavior. Your probation officer might also order you to rehab if your probation violation involved drugs or alcohol. Examples of drug and alcohol-related offenses include failing a drug test or being found in possession of drugs. If your probation officer feels that an underlying mental or emotional reason led to the violation, then he or she may order you to counseling instead.

Fines

You may have to pay additional fines to the victim of the original crime or the crime that caused you to violate your probation. If your violation did not involve a victim, you may have to pay fines to the court itself. Additionally, you may face a brief period of jail time as punishment. Depending on the circumstances of your violation, the judge may revoke your probation and require you to serve your remaining sentence in jail.

Janet Altschuler Criminal Defense Attorney served as a prosecutor before shifting her focus to defense, so she understands how prosecutors operate. Ms. Altschuler has dedicated her practice to the spirit of justice, working hard, and aggressively fighting for her clients’ rights. To schedule a free consultation with a Tucson criminal defense attorney, please call (520) 829-1741.

Fact or Fiction? A Look at Utah’s Crazy Laws

July 6, 2015 Criminal Defense Lawyer in Tucson, AZ

From laws holding husbands accountable for their wives’ criminal acts to laws making it illegal to sell alcohol in emergencies, Utah is rumored to have some pretty absurd laws still on the books. On various Internet sites, including Twitter and Stupidlaws.com, these rumored Utah laws are reported to be truth. But, even if the Internet proclaims a crazy Utah law exists, readers should hesitate before accepting the rumors at truth.

Illegal whale hunting

Even though Utah is rumored for barring whale hunting, the term “whale” doesn’t actually appear anywhere in the Utah code. However, the federal government’s Marine Mammal Protection Act does make it unlawful for any person or vessel to capture a species of whale in the course of commercial whaling. This federal regulation applies to any jurisdiction of the United States. Though a whale is unlikely to be found habituating the Great Salt Lake, it’s equally illegal to capture a whale in Utah as it is to capture a whale in any United States jurisdiction.

Fishing from horseback

Many Utah fishermen get ready to drop their lines once the ice melts from the state’s lakes. But, there’s a rumor that fishing from horseback is against Utah law. In reality, the 2014 Utah Fishing Guidebook has no mention of fishing from horseback. It does, however, address fishing with a crossbow. Additionally, the Utah Water Quality Act frowns upon anyone discharging harmful pollutants into the lakes.

Milk intake requirements

Getting plenty of calcium each day may be doctor recommended, but failing to do so is not actually against Utah law. However, the Utah Criminal Code does prohibit milk buyers from unfairly discriminating against specific communities, localities, or cities throughout the state. Doing so constitutes an offense against public health, safety, welfare, and morals.

Even if your criminal charges seem minor, a conviction can dramatically impact your quality of life. Your criminal record is public information, so any future lenders and employers will have access to this information. Call (520) 829-1741 to learn how Janet Altschuler Criminal Defense Attorney can help you protect your reputation when facing a felony charge.

This article is part of a collection of The Most Ridiculous Laws in the United States! Some of these laws are downright hard to believe. Do you know what might be illegal in your state?

ridiculouslaws