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Stamford Criminal Defense Law Blog

What is the one-leg stand field sobriety test?

In a previous post, the walk-and-turn field sobriety test was reviewed. However, that is not the only test you may be asked to take if a law enforcement officer in Connecticut suspects you may be impaired by alcohol while driving. explains that a second test also evaluates your ability to balance, follow instructions and execute multiple tasks simultaneously. This is called the one-leg stand test.

As the name implies, this test requires you to balance on one leg. The other leg must be lifted so that your foot remains parallel to the ground, roughly six inches off the ground. If you are wearing a shoe with a heel, you may have the option to take your shoes off although that may not be your preference if it is very cold, rainy, icy or snowy out. Even if dry, some road surfaces may not be comfortable to stand let alone balance on without shoes.

The walk-and-turn field sobriety test

If you have been arrested for an impaired driving offense in Connecticut, you may have been asked to participate in field sobriety tests by officers. As explained by, these tests are sanctioned by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are are used by law enforcement to provide them with probable cause to arrest you for drunk driving.

Field sobriety tests are by no means 100-percent accurate. In fact, one of the tests called the walk-and-turn test has an accuracy rate of only 66 percent. In this test, your balance as well as your ability to remember details and execute multiple actions simultaneously are all put to the test. It should be noted that when you are asked to take these tests, you are most likely very scared and nervous on top of it all.

Man charged in alleged drunk driving death

Connecticut residents who have ever heard about people being charged with criminal offenses after traffic accidents should know this can and does happen to everyday people. When it comes to accidents involving allegations of drunk driving, stereotypes may abound but the facts in a case should be focused on. These charges can be scary but defendants should always remember that their rights matter as well.

Such is the case for one man from New Haven today. He has recently been released from police custody after posting a $1,500 bond and being charged with operating under the influence. He was involved in an accident when his vehicle collided with a motorcylist going the opposite direction on a Tuesday evening. The motorcyclist, a 47-year-old man died in the crash.

State sees jump in calls regarding domestic abuse

Even the act of being accused of a crime in Connecticut can be very scary and unsettling. When a person is subsequently arrested and charged officially with a specific offense, things can become even more challenging. This is something that more people may need to watch for when it comes to domestic violence charges in the state.

According to the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence, last year saw a spike in the number of people who received some sort of help for alleged domestic violence. The state also reportedly had an increase in the number of people who made calls for help pursuant to alleged incidents of domestic abuse. In 2015, a total of 28,776 calls were received regarding potential domestic violence and 39,023 people received abuse-related services. Last year, those numbers rose to 30,128 and 43,034, respectively.

Domestic violence basics

Like most people in Connecticut, you have probably heard the term "domestic violence" before. But, how well do you know exactly what the law means by this? It is actually very important to understand this especially if you are accused of perpetrating some act of domestic abuse or violence.

The Connecticut Judicial Branch explains that more people than you might think could potentially accuse you of domestic violence. It is not simply about alleged abuse of one spouse by another. A person can be charged with domestic violence against a spouse, an ex-spouse, a child, a parent and a current or past romantic partner. Additionally, such charges may involve any person related to a defendant by marriage or blood as well as the co-parent of a child even if the parents never lived together.

Groups calls for greater emphasis in sex crimes

Connecticut residents who may have been charged with sexually related crimes know that this area of law is a heated one indeed. Emotions can run high on this topic and while that is understandable, it remains an important element of civil rights that defendants' rights are respected and protected along the way.

The state's Trafficking in Persons Council has recently made public requests in many areas concerning what it calls human trafficking. One of the things TIP is requesting is greater collaboration among different state agencies and other groups to crack down on those who are alleged to solicit and pay for sex. These johns as they are called may become the target of a campaign referred to as "End Demand".

Sex crime arrests in 2015

If you or someone you are close to has been arrested for an alleged sex crime in Connecticut, you are understandably quite nervous about what to expect. Regardless of the circumstances, a person always deserves a defense but can sometimes feel very alone after being arrested. However, the reality is that many other people have been in that same situation and it does not mean that you or the person you know who has been arrested is guilty.

Taking a look at the number of people arrested can give you a better sense of the type of activity that the state typically sees in this area. Statistics from the Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection give detailed information about arrests by offense and age of defendants. In 2015, a total of 95 people under the age of 18 were charged with sex crimes in Connecticut. Of these, 58 of them were 15, 16 or 17 years old, 22 were 13 or 14 and the remaining 15 were 12 or younger.

Job applicants with criminal records may benefit from new law

Connecticut residents who have ever been arrested and charged with a criminal offense know that even without a conviction, life after an arrest can be challenging. Whether a misdemeanor or a felony, any criminal activity can haunt a person for a long time.

One of the biggest challenges that people with prior arrests or convictions may face is getting a new job - or even keeping an existing job. When it comes time to fill out a job application or submit a resume, many employers will ask candidates if they have ever been arrested or convicted of a crime. Answering "yes" to either of these questions might put them a peson out of the running for the job before their application or resume is ever really reviewed. Work experience and education may take a back seat to a criminal record.

West Haven man facing DUI and other charges

Today's media can be a valuable means of receiving information but it can also make life difficult for Connecticut residents who have been arrested and charged with crimes. Very often, reports of criminal arrests provide little or spotty details that make it all too easy for people to paint the defendants in very negative lights. That can leave many people wondering if they are really able to get a fair defense and this is an understandable thought.

An example of this can be seen in the case of a 33-year-old man from West Haven. Reports suggest that the man has been accused of leaving the scene of one vehicle crash and then being apprehended after hitting yet another vehicle. No details have been provided about how officers supposedly connected him to the first crash. It is also not known how far apart the two alleged crashes happened.

Felonies, misdemeanors and infractions in Connecticut

Have you been arrested and charged with a crime in Connecticut? Maybe you know someone who has recently been arrested and is facing criminal charges. Either way, it can be important for you to understand a bit about how many types and levels of criminal charges are recognized in the state of Connecticut.

According to the Connecticut General Assembly, any violation of the law may be considered an infraction, a misdemeanor or a felony. Infractions are the least serious of all violations and the primary way that an infraction differs from other offenses is that the only consequence associated with an infraction is financial. No jail time is attributed to these incidents.

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