California Criminal Lawyer

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In the state of California , nearly 195,000 violent crimes were reported in 2006 alone. Across the United States, roughly 89,110 rapes and 12,658 murders occur each year.

Criminal law, also known as penal law, involves prosecution by the government of a person for an act that has been classified as a crime. Civil cases, on the other hand, involve individuals and organizations seeking to resolve legal disputes, and who are usually seeking damages. In a criminal case, a state prosecutor initiates the suit, while the victim brings the suit in a civil case. In a criminal case, the state, through a prosecutor, initiates the suit, while in a civil case the victim brings the suit.

A "crime" is defined as any act, or omission of an act, in violation of a public law forbidding or commanding it. Though there are some common law crimes, most crimes in the United States are established by local, state, and federal governments. Criminal laws can vary significantly from state to state.

Crimes include both felonies and misdemeanors. Felonies, which are more serious, include such crimes as rape and murder, while misdemeanors are less serious offenses. Petty theft, driving while intoxicated and jaywalking are all examples of misdemeanor crimes. Persons convicted of a crime may be incarcerated, fined, sentenced to treatment or community service, or possibly a combination thereof. Persons found liable in a civil case, however, may only have to give up property or pay money, but are not incarcerated.

Criminal law generally consists of two key aspects, a mental state and an accompanying or subsequent act. In order to gain a judgment against an accused, a criminal prosecutor must prove that both elements of the crime have been committed. Additionally, the prosecutor must prove "beyond a reasonable doubt" all the facts that are necessary to establish the guilt of the accused party.

If you reside in the state of California and have been accused of a crime, you need to hire a California criminal lawyer or attorney to help you with your case. These professionals represent individuals who have been charged with crimes by arguing their cases in courts of law. A California criminal lawyer or attorney will typically have a private practice concentrating on criminal law.

If you have been involved in a crime and you have been arrested, you should either request a public defender, or contact a private criminal lawyer or attorney, immediately. There are many things to look for when hiring a California lawyer or attorney, including a proven track record or arguing and winning cases, membership in good standing on the California Bar Association and American Bar Association, and a specialization in the area of criminal law under which you have been charged.

It is important to understand that the actual case is never between the victim or the complainant and the accused, but is between the defendant and the state. The state, with its access to the required resources, therefore employs experts to assist in proving the guilt of the accused. The criminal lawyer must endeavor to represent a client as expertly as possible to gain the benefit of any remedy that the legal system permits and provide a skillful defense as long as it is within the limitations of the law. An attorney's duty to protect the client's best interests at all costs is authorized by the legal system and acknowledged as necessary as long as the lawyer does not perform a fraud on the court in doing so.

California criminal attorneys will be familiar with California court customs and procedures, as well as all relevant statutes and case law that may pertain to your case. They will spend significant amounts of time on your case, hire and manage investigators, and also research and gather vital information from prosecution witnesses.

If you are suing a convicted criminal for damages resulting from a crime, you will need to hire a civil lawyer or attorney. If the person who committed the crime was not convicted and you feel they should have been, you can sue them for damages by contacting a California civil lawyer attorney.

If you are ready to contact a California criminal lawyer or attorney, visit the American Bar Association. The ABA features a lawyer locator, which can help you search for a criminal lawyer or attorney in California. Access to the site is free.

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