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Washington Criminal Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Appeals / Appellate Law, Constitutional Law and Municipal Law for Washington on
Q: I was charged for a DV that happened outside of the municipality.

I signed a SOC that listed the municipality incorrectly. I'm trying to attack the SOC. Shouldn't the court need juristriction to approve the SOC.

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 19, 2024

If you were charged for a domestic violence incident that happened outside of the municipality, and the Stipulation of Compromise (SOC) lists the incorrect municipality, you have grounds to challenge it. The court needs proper jurisdiction to approve and enforce legal agreements, including an SOC.... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Immigration Law for Washington on
Q: Shoplifted with a bunch of friends but didn't get caught

I realized I made a horrible mistake in the moment but I am an F1 student. I shoplifted at QFC in Seattle. I was wondering how long does the video recording last at QFC stores? Are these stored indefinitely?

If I get caught after the criminal statute of limitations, are they likely to press... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 9, 2024

The best course of action is to never shoplift in the first place. Since you have already done so, I would strongly urge you to refrain from shoplifting ever again. Continued criminal activity could jeopardize your immigration status and ability to remain in the United States.

In terms of...
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1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Criminal Law and Collections for Washington on
Q: I sold pieces of silver to a local jeweler. The check bounced. For two months he kept promising to make it good.

For two months he promised to make it good in a "few days". For the last month he has not returned my calls or texts. What are my options? Since he has done this recently to multiple people at what point does this become criminal? The transaction occurred in Sequim, Washington

Joel Gary Selik
Joel Gary Selik
answered on Apr 22, 2024

It is probably criminal now. Report it to the police (do not threaten to report it to the police as that might be a crime). Check your states laws on giving notice on bounced checks and your rights to recovery in small claims for damages in addition to the amount of the check.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Washington on
Q: Are there any laws about pointing a gun at someone’s car? (My friend’s car was pointed at by a gun is why I ask)

Would it be a threat? Or something else? I’m a kid. (12, almost 13) I’m not sure what “type” of “crime” this is.

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 16, 2024

Pointing a gun at someone or their property, including a car, is a serious offense and can be considered a crime in most jurisdictions. Depending on the specific circumstances and the laws of the state or country where the incident occurred, it could be classified as one or more of the following... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Washington on
Q: Are there any laws about pointing a gun at someone’s car? (My friend’s car was pointed at by a gun is why I ask)

Would it be a threat? Or something else? I’m a kid. (Under 18, over 10) I’m not sure what “type” of “crime” this is.

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 16, 2024

Pointing a gun at someone or their property, including a car, is a serious offense and can be considered a crime in most jurisdictions. Depending on the specific circumstances and the laws of the state or country where the incident occurred, it could be classified as one or more of the following... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Washington on
Q: Is there a law about threats?

My friend was in their car, and a person pulled out a gun and pointed it at their car. My friend and his mom sped off in a different direction to escape. They got a good look at the car, but not the person and filed a police report. Is this a crime?

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 16, 2024

Yes, this is a crime. Pointing a gun at someone, even if no shots are fired, is generally considered a serious offense. Depending on the specific circumstances and the laws of the jurisdiction where the incident occurred, this action could be classified as one or more of the following crimes:... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Washington on
Q: I have a question about the sheriff's office not investigating burglaries.

I am seeking an attorney or civil constitutional rights law organization because of the organized crime network operating in Ferry County that has burglarized my home repeatedly as well as my safe deposit box contents. The insurance companies that I have had denied the claims considering it a... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 5, 2024

I'm so sorry to hear about the difficulties and crimes you've been experiencing. What you're describing sounds extremely stressful and violating. While I cannot provide legal advice myself, I would strongly encourage you to continue seeking help from an experienced attorney or civil... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Litigation, Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Washington on
Q: What can i do legally about my boyfriend being held in custody after posting bond awaiting ehm for 30 days

The ehm people refuse to go get him from jail claiming there waiting for the jail to call them and tell them he's free to go

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Mar 22, 2024

If your boyfriend is still in custody despite posting bond, it's essential to take immediate action. First, verify the bond conditions and ensure that all requirements for his release have been met. If the electronic home monitoring (EHM) is part of the release conditions, confirm with the... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Litigation and Civil Rights for Washington on
Q: Do any attorneys want to take? My last attorney stated “it is a gold mine “but he is not a firm and a firm is needed

Law enforcement. judicial officers, state and federal. They planted drugs. They make up reasons to get search warrants that aren’t true they admit to planning drugs on dash cam they threaten hotel staff members they altered camera footage. They falsely arrested prosecution, misconduct, stealing,... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Mar 20, 2024

If you believe you have been a victim of legal misconduct, finding an attorney experienced in civil rights or criminal defense might be crucial for your situation. Attorneys from firms that handle cases involving law enforcement misconduct, false arrest, and evidence tampering are often well-versed... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Criminal Law and Domestic Violence for Washington on
Q: Is it legal for the state to assign a nco on my husband when there was no apparent harm risk or danger to me from him?

My husband and I where in a strictly verbal altercation when the police where called and they arrested him for an assault in the 4th degree with dv enhancement when I answer no to every question I was asked by law enforcement and there was a no contact order put into effect. However he has NEVER... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Mar 19, 2024

In instances involving domestic disputes, law enforcement may have policies or legal obligations to act cautiously, which can include issuing a no-contact order (NCO), even if no physical harm occurred. This is often a precautionary measure intended to ensure safety and prevent any potential harm... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights, Constitutional Law and Domestic Violence for Washington on
Q: I am a victim and survivor of child trafficking and recent and last few years .I'm being criminalized Washington state

I was forced to plead guilty for assault dv 4 degree .my abuser has been arrested twice since after mine .my lawyers when I had one cuz I went without lawyer for long while due process violations founded but ignored n charged told me they couldn't do anything about it didn't believe me... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Mar 16, 2024

I understand how difficult and overwhelming your situation must be. It's important to remember that you are not alone and there are resources available to help support victims and survivors of trafficking. It may be beneficial to reach out to local support groups, advocacy organizations, or... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Litigation, Civil Rights and Domestic Violence for Washington on
Q: I have a strange case we'll it's 2 cases in 1 somehow my public defender said it was a civil case and my other is a

Assault 4-dv the sheriff's that arrested me false a fide a statement from the alleged victim used a statement from my son who was in his room with a closed door I was in my room with a closed door he saw literally absolutely nothing he told me he told 911 I think my mom and her boyfriend are... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Mar 10, 2024

It sounds like you are dealing with a complex legal situation involving both a domestic violence charge (Assault 4-DV) and a potential civil case related to actions taken by law enforcement during your arrest. Here are some steps you can consider:

1. Communicate with your public defender:...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Civil Rights for Washington on
Q: Is there a way to confirm that you have been removed from the NICS restricted list?

The bipartisan gun bill in 2022 included a provision that restores gun rights 5 years post conviction for misdemeanor dv if it was a first time offense and there have since been no related convictions. Is there a way to confirm if someone is cleared to purchase a firearm or do you just have to roll... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Feb 24, 2024

Unfortunately, there isn't a direct way for individuals to confirm if they have been removed from the NICS restricted list. The National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is managed by the FBI and is primarily used by licensed firearm dealers to determine the eligibility of... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Divorce, Personal Injury and Civil Rights for Washington on
Q: I live in Washington state and I have a question concern recording via video or audio conversations to protect myself.

I get gaslighted/manipulated and/or lied to and video/audio recordings are the only way to protect myself in these scenarios. People say I did things i said things I didn’t. Or the other party attacks me or verbally abuses me but no one believes me because I’m a man. I don’t understand how... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Feb 23, 2024

Living in a two-party consent state like Washington can present challenges when it comes to recording conversations without the consent of all parties involved. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. One option is to seek legal advice to understand the specific circumstances in which... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Domestic Violence for Washington on
Q: is it breaching a DVPO if the defendant makes public posts about protected person on Facebook?

I live in Washington state and have a current DVPO against my ex. The only contact allowed is third party for child visitation or email about visitation and time. He is constantly posting about me on Facebook referring to me as “my son’s mom” “my kids mom” calling me a terrible parent and... View More

Todd B. Kotler
Todd B. Kotler
answered on Feb 5, 2024

It will depend on the wording of the Order. Unless it prohibits public comment, it likely is not a violation. if it can be construed as an attempt to make contact with the protected person, it may be. The excessive email sounds like an issue. You ought to seek a modification of the order moving... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Litigation, Domestic Violence and Municipal Law for Washington on
Q: Can I legally be required to attend an arraignment for a crime I am accused of but haven’t been arrested/subpoened for ?

Since leaving my county of residence over a month ago and traveling several hundreds of miles for a family emergency to a county in a different state the local LEA has filed charges with the court of limited jurisdiction alleging I violated animal control statutes and committed acts of harassment... View More

Liza Burke
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answered on Feb 3, 2024

The prosecutor can file charges without notice to the accused person and then you have to participate in all aspects of the court process (namely, hearings). Even when someone is arrested and let go or they go to jail for a night and no charges are filed, they might be unpleasantly surprised down... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Litigation and Civil Rights for Washington on
Q: If police are called to my house for a woman yelling and there wasn't a woman yelling can they unscrew my porch light?

Police were called for woman yelling and wasn't the case made contact asked them to leave, they knocked again and unscrewed my porch light and still wouldn't leave my property after seeing woman was fine and no problem are they allowed to touch and mess with my property?

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jan 26, 2024

It would likely be inappropriate and potentially unlawful for police officers to unscrew or tamper with your porch light after responding to a call at your home and finding no issue or disturbance requiring police action. A few key points:

- Police generally need a lawful purpose or...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Washington on
Q: Is it legal to use a personal stolen item as evidence against the person it was taken from?

My vehicle was parked at my ex- girlfriends house and she got into my vehicle and took my cell phone. She accessed information from my cell phone and then turned my cell phone in to the sheriff's department so they could access info from my cell phone to use as evidence. Is this legal for them... View More

Cristine Beckwith
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Cristine Beckwith
answered on Jan 5, 2024

Sorry to hear this happened. The Constitution protects against the government doing illegal search and seizures...however, this protection does not apply to private citizens who are turning over information or items to law enforcement.

However, if the government (law enforcement) is asking...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Washington on
Q: Can I go to treatment instead of jail on a probation violation
James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Dec 25, 2023

If you're facing a probation violation in Washington, you may have the option to pursue treatment as an alternative to jail time, but it ultimately depends on several factors. To explore this possibility:

Consult Your Attorney: Reach out to your attorney immediately to discuss your...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Employment Law for Washington on
Q: I had an incident happen where I believe I am the victim of hiring negligence, or negligent retention.

This is regarding a protective order I have against an ex granted in 2019 that was originally granted for one year. After one strike on the protection order that she plead guilty to, the order was extended an additional 5 years. She just recently reoffended (strike two) where she attempted to run... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Nov 9, 2023

Based on the facts provided, you may have a valid claim against the company for negligent hiring or retention of the employee who violated the protective order while on duty. Here are some key considerations:

- Washington law recognizes claims against employers for negligent hiring,...
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