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May 2012 Archives

Robbery suspect claims officers punched, kicked him during arrest

In addition to being presumed innocent until proven guilty, when someone in Montgomery County is arrested, he or she should be able to expect that police will use only the force necessary to handcuff the suspect. This means that if someone in Largo is being arrested for attempted robbery, police can't be extremely physical if the suspect is docile and listens to the arresting officer's commands. If an arresting officer does use unnecessary force, he or she could be the focus of a civil rights lawsuit.

Football player's rape conviction overturned after victim recants

Imagine being arrested and charged with rape. While that is scary enough as it is, many people in Washington, D.C., would be even more frightened if they knew they were innocent. Knowing that someone was so cruel and slandering as to fabricate a story or sexual assault and to not tell police the truth as it becomes increasingly obvious that the person who allegedly committed the crime would be prosecuted is mind-boggling for many people. Luckily for a former high-school football player and current NFL-hopeful, the woman who claimed he raped her has finally told law enforcement that she made the whole story up.

Court upholds confession after police fail to give Miranda rights, part II

Earlier in the week, we talked about a suspect who was arrested on a gun charge and an appeals court's decision to allow his confession into evidence. The controversy surrounding the case, however, is that the man's confession to the violent criminal charges came after a first confession in which the suspect was not read his Miranda rights. Until this appeals court decision, confessions following a "deliberate, two-step interrogation" would be thrown out under a United States Supreme Court Case.

Court upholds confession after police fail to give Miranda rights, part I

A federal appeals court has recently handed down a decision that many may feel undermine the basic rights that anyone suspected of a crime has -- the rights to remain silent and to an attorney. Almost everyone in Bethesda has heard the Miranda warnings on television before. In fact, many people can recite them by heart after having heard them so many times. Even though everyone may know them, the stress of being accused of a crime and under arrest may make many people forget that they don't have to talk to police and can wait until they have an attorney present to say anything.

Public believes people with beards more likely to commit crimes

Imagine hearing about a brutal rape, who comes to mind when you think about who did it? If you are like most people, it seems you thought about a man with a beard. There is now scientific evidence that supports the claim that people in Prince George's County believe that men with beards are more likely to be guilty of some kind of sexual assault than beardless men.

What does the genetic nature of psychopathy mean for criminal guilt?

The image of a psychopath strikes fear into the hearts of many people in Rockville. The idea that someone would do whatever he or she wants, regardless of who gets hurt, is indeed frightening, but there is some question as to whether psychopaths can be held totally responsible for their actions. After a recent article documented psychopathic tendencies in children as young as three, it calls into question whether a psychopath's actions can truly be helped.

High school students charged with felony sex crimes

When many people in Washington, D.C., hear the word "voyeurism" they most likely think of a Peeping Tom, not two teenage high-school students. Unfortunately for these two young men, however, they have been charged with a felony sex crime after police say they videotaped their teacher.

When are sexual abuse cases too old to prosecute?

Each state has its own rules on when a case becomes too old to prosecute, and while Maryland's laws may be different than any other state's, many people may believe that there is just a point where evidence would be too stale to have a fair trial. Whether that is at the five-year mark, 10 years or 20 years, there are some states that allow prosecutors to bring a sexual abuse case 43 years after the incident apparently took place.

Hazing in Maryland: a rite of passage or a violent crime?

Even though our state has classified "hazing" as a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail, a $500 fine or both -- you can be certain that hazing rituals still take place at the University of Maryland and other colleges in the Silver Spring area. In the vast majority of cases, no one is seriously injured, no one dies and no one is charged with a violent crime. In the stories that make the news, however, serious injuries and deaths are almost always involved.

Does forensics actually do more harm than good?

What would you do if police brought you in for questioning and said that they had forensic evidence that placed you at the scene of a crime? While many people in Montgomery County may think that forensic evidence is a way to accurately determine who is guilty and who is not, a report by The Washington Post calls into question just how true that is.

Law Offices of
James N. Papirmeister, Esq.

Law Offices of James N. Papirmeister, Esq.
8630 Fenton St., Suite 320
Silver Spring, MD 20910

Office Number: 301-589-2100
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