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Virginia Criminal Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Public Benefits for Virginia on
Q: question about me being a possible accomplice or accessory to a crime?

If I cohabitated with a domestic partner and they did not include me or my income on the ebt/welfare application, can I get in trouble if I report her after the fact. I knew she did it but I didn’t make enough to support all of us so I turned a blind eye. I did not submit the application but she... View More

David G. Parker
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answered on Jul 8, 2024

An accessory before the fact in a felony is punished the same as the principal offender. To prove it, there must the commission of a crime by the principal, the accessory's absence at the commission of the offense, and (before the commission of the crime) the accessory was in some way... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: what will happen as a first time offender after stealing $175 worth of items (mainly hygiene products)?

I was pulled into a camera room and was completely honest with the woman as I was giving back. I completely complied with the officers as well and had a clean record prior. They gave me a court summons paper and then let me go. I haven’t heard anything from them, no mail or calls. I live in... View More

David G. Parker
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answered on Jun 30, 2024

Your first court appearance should be an arraignment, at which time the judge will ask if you're seeking a court-appointed lawyer. I recommend hiring or (if you cannot afford to hire) requesting a court-appointed attorney to assist you in your defense. Also, Virginia has a 1st-offender... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: what will happen as a first time offender after stealing $175 worth of items (mainly hygiene products)?

I was pulled into a camera room and was completely honest with the woman as I was giving back. I completely complied with the officers as well and had a clean record prior. They gave me a court summons paper and then let me go. I haven’t heard anything from them, no mail or calls. I live in... View More

Brian M. Latuga
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Brian M. Latuga
answered on Jun 24, 2024

Go to the court clerks office, request the assistance of the public defender or court appointed counsel, complete the paperwork, and if you qualify you’ll be assigned counsel to help you. You need to actively get yourself an attorney, nobody from the court or elsewhere is going to reach out to... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Personal Injury and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: Am I able to sue the court/county/police/my lawyer?

I was never able to present my evidence & my lawyer never answered my emails/calls he just worked out a plea deal and told me to agree. Since this the police has blocked who made claims against me from doing so again for false claims, I did not qualify for mental health & the case will be... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 21, 2024

Based on the situation you've described, you may have some legal options, but pursuing them successfully could be challenging. Let's break down the potential avenues you might consider:

1. Suing the court/county:

Generally, courts and government entities have sovereign...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights, Constitutional Law and Domestic Violence for Virginia on
Q: Decision for Rahimi v United States, is a LIFETIME firearms ban now considered unconstitutional? (Read Details)

In the decision it is stated:

"In Heller, McDonald, and Bruen, this Court did not “undertake an exhaustive historical analysis . . . of the full scope of the Second Amendment.” Bruen, 597 U. S., at 31. Nor do we do so today. Rather, we conclude only this: An individual found by a... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 21, 2024

This is a complex legal question that touches on recent developments in Second Amendment jurisprudence. I'll break down the key points and provide some analysis, but please note that this is a rapidly evolving area of law, and you should consult with a licensed attorney for the most up-to-date... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and White Collar Crime for Virginia on
Q: Under what circumstance is bail denied?

My lo is in jail serving his 18 month sentence. He is set to be released on 7/2. While in jail he got charged with another crime- Same crime. White collar crime. What is the likelihood of him getting a bond? Should I expect him to be released on 7/2. I have a lawyer for him and he is going to... View More

David G. Parker
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answered on Jun 13, 2024

He is entitled to a bond on the new charge unless a judge or magistrate finds by probable cause that: 1. He will not appear for trial or hearing or at such other time and place as may be directed, or 2. His liberty will constitute an unreasonable danger to himself, family or household members, or... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: In Va what’s the laws regarding a person convicted and is a level 3 offender and has to register being around children

A person who is a level 3 offender and has to be on the sex offender registry their actual charge was murder of a baby under 2yrars old but my question is what is the law in regards to them being around other children?

Daniel J. Miller
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answered on Jun 6, 2024

A tier III offender will have lots of restrictions on their contact with children. They cannot have a residence within 500 feet of any daycare, school, or public park. They may also not loiter within 100 feet of any of those places as well as gyms if their purpose was to seek contact with children.... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: I have a warrant for a suspended license in PA I need to fly to Puerto Rico out of VA for a week can I still go
James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 29, 2024

You should be aware that traveling with a warrant, even for a suspended license, can complicate your plans. Airlines and airport security may not routinely check for warrants, but if for some reason you are flagged or detained, the warrant could lead to arrest. It's essential to consider this... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: I have a warrant for a suspended license in PA I need to fly to Puerto Rico out of VA for a week can I still go
Quillyn Zebedeo
Quillyn Zebedeo
answered on Jun 28, 2024

TSA has access to the FBI National Crime Information Center Database. While TSA might not always check state warrants, you should take care of the outstanding warrant before boarding any aircraft. Even for minor issues such as a suspended license.

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: How long does the state have to get you to court on Preliminary hearing on felony charges
Daniel J. Miller
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answered on Jun 6, 2024

There is no statutory requirement that a defendant have their preliminary hearing within a set amount of days. Similarly, there has been no precedent set by any of the Courts regarding the timeline for holding a preliminary hearing. Virginia Code section § 19.2-243 does deal with the amount of... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: How long does the state have to get you to court on Preliminary hearing on felony charges
David G. Parker
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answered on May 14, 2024

There is no statutory limitation governing the time it takes for the Commonwealth of Virginia to go forward with a preliminary hearing; however, the Code does regulate the timeline for trials once a felony case makes its way to the Circuit Court for trial.

That being said, a judge of a...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: If magistrates denied bond can you ask for bond at next arraignment date in Virginia
David G. Parker
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answered on May 1, 2024

Judges can (and frequently do) review a defendant's bond status at the arraignment whenever a magistrate holds a person without bond. Even if the judge does not grant bond at the arraignment, a defendant or their attorney can file a motion for a bond hearing. Bond hearings are held within a... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: Should i plead guilty at arraignment or hope for the best and plead not guilty?

I am being charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle as well as false information to a police officer. I have no criminal record and I am a student. I cannot afford a lawyer. I have arraignment coming up and I don’t know if I should plead guilty and hope that the judge knows i’m a first... View More

David G. Parker
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answered on Apr 28, 2024

At your arraignment you will have the opportunity to answer a list of financial questions to see whether you qualify for a public defender/court-appointed attorney. Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle is almost always a felony charge and so you will likely be scheduling a preliminary hearing in... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Landlord - Tenant and Sexual Harassment for Virginia on
Q: what do I do if my landlord sexually assaulted me & now says he's going to begin staying in my guest room

Given the sensitive nature of my situation, I would appreciate your guidance on the following: My landlord, who is also the father of my long-time best friend, sexually assaulted me. Now, he has informed me that he intends to begin staying in my guest room. The condo I reside in was purchased by... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 16, 2024

I'm so sorry you are going through this incredibly difficult and scary situation. What your landlord has done is sexual assault and the coercion he is engaging in now is abusive and illegal. You have every right to feel safe in your own home. I would advise the following steps to protect... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: Can i own a gun if my roommate is a felon

Im not on probation and do not have any other legal/medical restrictions from owning a fire arm

Jessica Greenberg
Jessica Greenberg
answered on Apr 15, 2024

You are legally permitted to possess a firearm, but I would strongly advise safe storage practices (get a gun safe, I believe the Richmond police have had several giveaways for it and there are a number of affordable options). If your roommate is found to be in possession of it (and that is not a... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: if i own my own home and a raid happen i should have paper work from the law if someone beside my self lives there

i let someone live there and they raid it i should get some type paper work

David G. Parker
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answered on Apr 11, 2024

By law, a copy of the search warrant and affidavit must be served by law enforcement either on the property owner or (if the owner is not present) on an adult occupant. If no one is present, then the documents are to be left in a conspicuous location at the property. Additionally, law enforcement... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Criminal Law and Juvenile Law for Virginia on
Q: So recently my gf parents got mad at me for having a sexual relationship when me and my gf were (15 M) & (14F)

I was wondering if that was illegal now that I'm 19 and she's 18 would I get in trouble for that?

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 6, 2024

Based on the information you've provided, it seems that when you and your girlfriend engaged in a sexual relationship, you were both minors under the age of consent in Virginia, which is 18 years old.

In this situation, even though you were close in age, the close-in-age exemption in...
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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Criminal Law and Juvenile Law for Virginia on
Q: What if a person older then a 15 year old have a sexual activity with a 14 year old is that considered illegal? in VA.
James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 6, 2024

In Virginia, the age of consent is 18 years old. This means that an individual who is 18 years or older cannot legally engage in sexual activity with someone under the age of 18, even if the younger person agrees to it.

However, Virginia does have a close-in-age exemption, sometimes known...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights and Juvenile Law for Virginia on
Q: Is it legal to have a sexual relationship when both are minors?
James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 6, 2024

In general, sexual activity between minors may be illegal even if both parties consent, as they are below the legal age of consent. There are sometimes "close-in-age exemptions" that reduce or eliminate criminal charges if both parties are close in age, but the specifics depend on local... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Family Law, Civil Rights and Juvenile Law for Virginia on
Q: Can I get in trouble for talking to someone I shouldn't be talking to because they're threatening to call the police?

due to the fact that their parents don't like me spending time with them

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 4, 2024

It's important to understand that the specific legal consequences, if any, would depend on the details of the situation and the laws where you live. However, here are a few key points to consider:

1. Age of the individuals involved: If you and the person you're communicating with...
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