Criminal Law

Expungement Law Update

A bill to reform a number of aspects of the existing expungement laws has been drafted and filed with both the Minnesota House and Senate. On March 5th I sat in on a hearing before the Judiciary Committee of the House on the bill. What’s in the Bill? A summary of the bill describes the bill as “expanding judicial expungement authority over juvenile expungements; requires business screening records to keep their criminal records current; allows for eviction records to be expunged at the time of judgment; expands the scope of statutory expungement in chapters 609A; creates a path to expungement without petitioning the court; amends the factors for a court to consider in granting a statutory expungement ; amends the law governing access to expunged..

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Anoka County Holds Community Forums on Dangers of Heroin

As a criminal lawyer, I have seen first hand the use of drugs and the affects on people’s lives.  In the last year, our team of lawyers has noticed an increase in incidents related to the use of drugs. I read with interest a recent article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune entitled; “Twin Cities heroin, painkiller deaths surged in the first half of 2013.” The article states that the pace of fatal prescription painkiller overdoses has increased as well as an uptick in LSD and meth use. The Criminal Defense Lawyers at BGS have seen a rise in heroin and prescription drug cases that we are hired to defend. Over the years we have seen the rise and fall of..

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The Police Have Confiscated My Property. What Can I Do?

If the police have taken your property they have typically done so under Minnesota’s asset forfeiture laws. They can only do this in one of two cases. The first is that they believe your property is “instrumental” to the crime you are accused of committing. So, for example, if you were pulled over and charged with a DWI or DUI, then the police could take your car, arguing that the car was instrumental to your ability to commit that crime. Note that this doesn’t happen after you are convicted of the crime. This means that a good attorney may be able to help you get our property back. The second case is when the asset is believed to have come from “criminal proceeds.” That is..

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Expungement Laws in Review

There is currently a state of Minnesota House/Senate “working group” that is meeting periodically to try come up with modifications to the existing laws on expungement (sealing of criminal records)  in Minnesota. The hope is that they can draft changes to the current law to allow expungements for more criminal matters including juvenile cases. The Minnesota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL) is assisting this “working group” of legislatures along with the Minnesota Council on Crime in Justice in drafting this potential legislation. I am a member of the MACDL legislative subcommittee and will be assisting in this endeavor. I will periodically be blogging on the status of this legislation in the upcoming session of the MN legislature so look for my blogs. I also..

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Do I Have to Tell My Employer I’ve Been Charged with a Crime?

You are not under any legal obligation to go out of your way to tell your employer about your arrest. However, your arrest and court appearances could cause you to miss work, which could lead to problems on the job. An arrest is not a conviction, so it may be in your best interests to come clean with your employer about what’s going on. You may also need or want to apply for a leave of absence to give yourself the time that you need to defend yourself. Arrests are matters of public record, and your boss may find out that you’ve been arrested anyway. Hearing it from you may help you hang on to your job. If you are convicted then you are still..

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