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Minnesota Criminal Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: What are burglary tools by law?
Thomas C Gallagher
Thomas C Gallagher answered on Jul 12, 2021

See, e.g. State v. Peterson, unpublished, Minn Court of Appeals 2020:

"A person is guilty of possession of burglary tools when he "has in [his] possession any device, explosive, or other instrumentality with intent to use or permit the use of the same to commit burglary."...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: My bf was charged with domestic assault. How do I play the difficult witness card.

I asked the prosecutor to drop the charges as I just wanted him to leave that night. She would not drop them but offered a deal of disorderly conduct. He refused the deal. I will be subpoenaed to testify. I’ve been told without me the witness there is no case and I can be difficult or... Read more »

Thomas C Gallagher
Thomas C Gallagher answered on Jul 12, 2021

The prosecution has the burden of proving guilt at a criminal trial, with evidence. Normally hearsay (an out-of-court-statement offered-to-prove-the-truth-of-the-matter-asserted) is inadmissible at trial (is not evidence). As a result, if the prosecution's key or sole witness does not appear... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Family Law for Minnesota on
Q: Can my husband face criminal charges for committing adultery with his first full blood cousin?
Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on Jun 29, 2021

Strangely enough, adultery isn't an offense for married men. The statute is incredibly outdated and sexist and frankly, I have never seen a woman charged with adultery in the 20 or so years that I have practiced as an attorney. Incest in Minnesota is a crime as well, but the blood... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: I made an anonymous report about someone committing economic assistance fraud. They received a court summons.

Can their attorney gain access to my anonymous phone call?

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on Jun 3, 2021

Not necessarily. But they may be able to put two and two together to determine that you were the one who made the call. Presumably, the police reports would reference the anonymous call and what information was provided that resulted in the initiation of the investigation into the individual who... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: I arrived at my ex house and she called the police because I was intoxicated from the previous night. The police had me

Leave the premises. I was too intoxicated to drive so I slept in my car. At some point, the cops were escorted my ex to her car, I had received a call that woke me and as she was getting in her car I waz pulling out. The police had weapons drawn and arrested me. My question is how can I prove I was... Read more »

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 30, 2021

You’re not going to get a defense to your charges from asking a question on an online legal forum. You need an attorney who can review the allegations against you and then discuss what potential defenses you might have against the charges.

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: Can someone be charged with possession of a gun when the gun was not found on body and the gun has no firing pin in it?
Thomas C Gallagher
Thomas C Gallagher answered on May 30, 2021

A person can be in criminal possession of a firearm even when not on their body. Read up on "constructive possession." Minnesota and the United States statutes contain many gun and gun-related crimes, including some for "replica firearms" and defining "firearm" to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: Someone was beat up, thrown down the stairs and choked while under water was caught by her son.

She signed herself out of the hospital and died the next morning. Will he be charged with her death? If not why?

Thomas C Gallagher
Thomas C Gallagher answered on May 23, 2021

The question states that someone may have committed an assault crime, and implies that may have resulted in hospitalization. If true, that could lead to a felony assault charge. Most deaths are not caused by crime. But if there is evidence that a criminal act resulted in a death, a prosecutor could... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: Someone was beat up, thrown down the stairs and choked while under water. They ended up in the hospital.

She signed herself out of the hospital and died the next morning. Will he be charged with her death?

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 22, 2021

That’s impossible to know with knowing what the cause of death was. That will require an autopsy at a minimum.

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: Uttering a forgery

I wrote a check to a lady who had a truck for sale, the check was bad as I didn't have the funds in my account, I am now being charged with uttering a forgery which is class h felony it says i can get up to 6 years in prison. They are stating that the detective contacted chase bank where i... Read more »

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 20, 2021

I’m not sure where you are charged with this offense. Minnesota does not have class H felonies and does not have a crime of uttering a forgery. But if you were charged with a felony you do need an attorney. Do not represent yourself. Get an attorney on board before court.

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: If I have a felony but I got an offer as a drop off as a misdemeanor and am I convicted to the felony or misdeaminor ?

I just wanted to know that and I also if I do an early charge do I need to have an attorney or not

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 18, 2021

You are charged with a felony. You absolutely need an attorney. With this offer, you will have a felony on your record until you successfully complete probation.

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: I was charged with disorderly conduct. I am not sure what even for.

I didn't do anything before the police arrived. I walked through some yard, but I wasn't charged with trespassing. I didn't scream or cause any ruckus. It's basically retaliation from some neighbors, they called the cops and I wasn't even doing anything. They all got... Read more »

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 15, 2021

Clearly you are accused of more than that. The accusations would be reflected in the police reports. You need to get an attorney involved to help get you out from under these accusations.

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3 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Animal / Dog Law for Minnesota on
Q: Firearms related question relating to dogs in the state of MN.

Say I was walking my dog, and I do not have a carry permit, would it be possible to find me guilty of carrying/concealing a pistol if it's concealed on my dog and not my person.

William Bailey
William Bailey answered on May 14, 2021

Yes. Look up constructive possession. They know your dog didn’t obtain the gun on its own.

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Civil Rights for Minnesota on
Q: My assistant public defender quit. She poorly did my contested omnibus only challenge half of issus can i reopen it?
Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 14, 2021

I'm not entirely sure what you mean by your public defender quitting. A public defender cannot simply stop representing you. The Court could determine that you no longer qualify for a public defender or you could chose to proceed pro se, but a public defender cannot simply quit. A new... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: Can a 14 year old go to juvie for criminal mischief
Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 6, 2021

There is no such crime innMinnesota as criminal mischief.

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: Car title chaos

I bought a car from a guy for $3200 and the title was not his name but it was signed and he has a vehicle he told me that he just wanted to get the brakes fixed and he would bring it back later I still Held the title signed over by the owner but I did not have a vehicle and I found out the guy who... Read more »

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on May 1, 2021

Get the advice of an attorney. Law enforcement isn’t there to help you. Don’t talk to them until you’ve spoken with a defense attorney.

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Personal Injury, Domestic Violence and Sexual Harassment for Minnesota on
Q: Hello! Should I press verbal assault charges against a security guard who verbally threatened me, “banning me” tryin

Thank you!! I have had no interaction that provoked it besides me shaking my head. He is attempting to ban me from a hospital when I did not initiate any encounter with him, and he stormed up to me demanding the I know who he is and I better not mess around with a man like him, I have no idea what... Read more »

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on Apr 27, 2021

You can't "press charges." You can report the matter to law enforcement. They will make the decision if charges are appropriate.

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Domestic Violence for Minnesota on
Q: If I'm the victim of a domestic but want to recant my statement how can I do that?

I feel I was miss understood by the police and because I was miss understood my ex is being charged with something he didn't do.

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on Apr 26, 2021

You can't certainly contact either law enforcement or the prosecutor to address this issue. In all likelihood, your initial statement to law enforcement was audio recorded, and perhaps video taped as well via a body cam. So there should be an accurate recording of your statement. You... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Traffic Tickets, Civil Rights and Gov & Administrative Law for Minnesota on
Q: I learned that i techinacally do not need a license since i have no waived my rights. what do i do if i get pulled over.

I learned that if i get a licience that means i am waving my rights and that i must follow all laws in my state related to using and obtaining my vehicle. I dont want to get license because i want to keep my rights. I know i have the right to travel and by obtaining my license i will loose that... Read more »

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on Apr 22, 2021

You cannot legally drive without a license. So you will get ticketed, fined and perhaps even jailed if you drive without a license, especially if you do so repeatedly. Otherwise you can get a license and drive legally.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: An of duty task force officer noticed my truck in a restaurant parking lot he waited until me and two others came out me

My friend and I left his car there and went to his place to look at chain saw his roommate had for sale .. we were there about an hour we left there and went back to his car leaving his place there were cops around the corner like they were waiting for us . The off duty guy said later that he... Read more »

Thomas C Gallagher
Thomas C Gallagher answered on Apr 10, 2021

No question stated here, but presumably the thought is "what can be done?" It's time to get a good criminal defense attorney, with drug case experience, on board. From the description, it may be that a pretrial motion attacking search and seizure should be considered, after all... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota on
Q: My friend was picked up on a warrant from 5 years ago. When he's been into jail. But that never came up before

He was on probation. So how did they pick him up

Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson answered on Apr 6, 2021

No one can answer that question without more information. Consult with an attorney directly.

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