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Greenville Criminal Law Blog

The world is in flux right now as we all take our steps to battle COVID-19

While many of you are worried about sick family members and friends; staying in place and keeping yourself fed; we at Ryan Beasley Law have an extra onus of work. Our clients. We are a criminal defense firm. We help those people facing charges ranging from drunk driving and drug possession to serious felony offense in state and federal courts throughout the Upstate of South Carolina.

SC Supreme Court Chief Justice Donald Beatty first gave attorneys official warnings about preparing for COVID-19 on March 4, but last week word came down that all jury trials have been postponed through the end of next month. This has changed a lot of what we do when preparing for clients. Some have been put in limbo, but for many other people facing non-violent charges this actually has helped them because there is an effort to expedite their cases.

Law changes can impact drug testing and criminal cases

Drug charges are serious, and a conviction can greatly impact a South Carolina defendant's life for years to come. Because of the implications of these types of charges, the way law enforcement handles and tests for substances is important. Thanks to new changes in the law, this issue is more important than ever.

Hemp is now legal in South Carolina, and its legalization has brought up questions as to how law enforcement can test this substance and know the difference between marijuana and hemp. These both are variations of the same plant, and it's not easy for the police to know with certainty what they are dealing with. The state recently decided to leave all marijuana testing to trained scientists instead of law enforcement.

Does shooting count as police seizure?

You may know that the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects you from unreasonable actions of South Carolina police during a search or seizure. However, perhaps you do not fully understand what it means to have police "seize" you. Does it mean that they have physically put their hands on you? Are you still under seizure if you struggle free and run away?

These are some of the questions the U.S. Supreme Court must decide as they currently examine a claim of excessive force against police officers. Although the incident took place in another state, its decision may have serious ramifications across the country.

Did peer pressure lead to a DUI for your college student?

Sending your child off to a South Carolina college was likely an event that left you with mixed emotions. You most likely felt pride, concern, sadness, happiness, excitement and apprehension for the new chapter in life your child was starting. You may have anticipated phone calls telling you about college life and learning that your child was excelling in his or her classes.

What you may not have expected, however, was for your child to inform you that he or she had received a DUI charge. Undoubtedly, you felt shocked at first and then possibly angry. How could your child have made such a poor decision? Peer pressure may have played a role.

Lawmakers look to revise unfair asset forfeiture laws

You may be fully aware of the possible consequences for a conviction of drug charges, especially distribution or trafficking. You might expect fines, imprisonment, community service and other penalties. Certainly, the burden of a criminal charge on your record will follow you the rest of your life.

However, what you may not expect after an arrest for certain criminal offenses is the confiscation of your property. Asset forfeiture is a common practice in South Carolina. State law allows law enforcement to collect any items they believe you may have obtained through the profits of the crime for which police have arrested you. Recently, however, some are protesting the practice of asset forfeiture as contrary to state and U.S. constitutions.

The stress of being a doctor can lead some to alcohol

You may have known from the time you were young that you wanted to be a doctor. You studied hard all through your school years and looked forward to the time when you could gain practical experience in helping people with their medical concerns. In the beginning of your career, you may have been bright-eyed and eager to touch the lives of others.

Unfortunately, over the years, you came to closely understand just how demanding and difficult it is to be a doctor. You may feel that you have little social life because you spend most of your time at the hospital. Even when you do have time off, you likely lack energy to do anything fun. You may even suffer from mental issues of your own, like depression, due to the strain of the job.

Can the First Step Act benefit you?

When the federal government enacted the First Step Act, many who were in prison for non-violent crimes rejoiced along with their families. The First Step Act promotes long-overdue reforms in the criminal justice system, including adopting common sense sentencing guidelines and more appropriate options for those convicted of drug-related offenses.

If you are currently serving time in a federal prison, you may wish to obtain more information about the FSA. To be considered for eligibility, you must take certain steps. Having a legal advocate guiding you through these steps may improve your chances of success.

An investigation for wire fraud may have you feeling on edge

Conducting any type of business can come under scrutiny from time to time. Employees may have complaints, or the Internal Revenue Service may feel the need to conduct an audit over financial matters. While these can be stressful and difficult to address, your situation can become more distressing if you are accused of criminal charges.

You may believe that you conduct your business affairs in accordance with the law, but for some reason, you have come under suspicion of law enforcement. Particularly, they suspect that you or your company has committed wire fraud. As a result, an investigation is underway looking into your activities.

When healthy competition turns to a "study drug" addiction

Some would say that a little competition is healthy. It forces people out of their comfort zones, and allows them to push themselves harder and grow in order to succeed. In the academic world of secondary education, it could ultimately help students reach their goals for the future.

That is, until that competition becomes unhealthy. More and more college students turn to "study drugs" to give them an edge. Supposedly, these drugs help students focus and stay awake so they can study longer and harder. Unfortunately, that rarely lasts.

What can increase the penalties of a DUI conviction?

You may think that driving home after having a couple drinks is no big deal. However, when you are facing DUI charges and the consequences and penalties that follow, you may have a different opinion. A simple first offense DUI conviction can leave you with long-lasting struggles in many areas of your life, but there are other factors that can quickly increase your troubles.

South Carolina laws, like many other states, allow for courts to enhance DUI sentences when certain factors exist. Because of this, that first-offense DUI has the potential to derail your life for the foreseeable future.

    • 10 best 2016 client satisfaction American institute of personal injury attorneys
    • 10 best 2016 client satisfaction American institute of criminal law attorneys
    • Martindale-Hubbell | Distinguished | Peer Rated for High Professional Achievement | 2019
    • National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys
    • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trial Lawyers
    • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 40 Under 40
    • Nationally Ranked Superior DUI Attorney By the nafdd | 2013
    • Top Young Attorneys | 2014 | Rising Stars selected by Peer Recognition and Professional Achievement
    • Rated By Super Lawyers | Rising Stars | Ryan L. Beasley | SuperLawyers.com
    • America's Most Honored Professionals | Ryan L. Beasley
    • Martindale-Hubbell | Client Champion | Gold / 2019
    • Expertise | Best Criminal Defense Lawyers in Greenville
    • 2015 Legal Elite of the Upstate | Greenville's Top Attorneys
    • Legal Elite of the Upstate
    • Legal Elite of the Upstate 2013-2018
    • Client Distinction Award | Ryan L. Beasley, Esq.
    • Client Champion 2019 | Ryan L. Beasley | Gold
    • Highest Possible Rating in Both Legal Ability & Ethical Standards | Ryan L. Beasley, Esq.
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