If you’ve been accused of a crime or know someone who has, it can really add tremendous stress and worry to friends and family. It can be equally stressful for the accused person if he or she understands little or no English.
Requesting or hiring a Spanish-speaking criminal lawyer makes it possible for him or her to offer customized legal services in a language you can comfortably and fluently understand.
Secondly, hiring a bilingual Spanish attorney eliminates any miscommunication or misunderstanding about the crimes you have been charged with and the penalties their conviction brings.
Arizona's criminal laws recognize a wide range of illegal conduct, such as assault and battery, theft, drug possession or murder. Similar to most states, Arizona also adheres to very strict punishment laws for these offenses, such as fines, imprisonment, community service and other sanctions.
The Arizona Constitution has a provision dictating their lax stance on who may possess a fire arm: “The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself or the State shall not be impaired.”
While Arizona is very strict in other areas, when it comes to gun-control, they are one of the least restrictive, stating that any United States citizen over the age of 21 years may possess a fire arm if they are not prohibited in some way by prior felony convictions or mental illness, and that person may carry the weapon openly or concealed without a license.
While many states require a “concealed carry” permit, Arizona does not, Nor do they require hands-on training, simply complete a firearms safety course, which may be taken online.
Phoenix law considers it to be “indecent exposure” when a man or woman purposely exposes their private parts in the presence of other people, in an effort to cause shock or offense. It is important to note that this law does not apply in situations where a person is expected to be exposed such as a gym locker room or swimming pool changing area, etc.
If the victim of Indecent Exposure is over the age of 15, then it is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor and the perpetrator is subject to a maximum jail time of six months.
If the victim is a minor, under the age of 15, then it is considered a Class 6 felony and the perpetrator is subject to a maximum of 2 years in jail.
Arizona has some of the most severe and strict laws pertaining to DUI and DWI (Driving Under the Influence and Driving While Intoxicated).
Here are some DUI charges a person can be convicted of:
1. Impaired to the Slightest Degree: simply means that you are visibly intoxicated and operated a motorized vehicle
2. Blood Alcohol Content: It is illegal to operate a motorized vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .08% or higher. The limit is .04% for commercial drivers and .02 or higher for minors under the age of 21 years.
3. Under Age DUI: For any person under the age of 21 years, drinking and driving is expressly forbidden and Arizona is known for its “zero-tolerance” of underage drinkers. Even the slightest trace of blood alcohol content comes with severe penalty.
4. Felony DUI: Being charged with a Felony DUI is one of the most severe drinking-and-driving convictions and can include large fine, prison time and license suspension or revoked. You can be charged with DUI felony if you are arrested for DUI with a minor under the age of 15 years in your car, if you were driving impaired with an already suspended license or if you have already been charged with 2 DUIs over the past 60 months.
Some people falsely believe that if they refuse a Breathalizer Test, then there will be no repercussions for drunk-driving due to lack of evidence. If you are suspected of driving drunk and pulled over and you refuse a Chemical Test or Breathalizer Test, your license will be automatically suspended for 12 months.
First-Degree Murder in Arizona is the most serious criminal offense, in which a person purposefully and intentionally takes the life of another person. The consequences for a first-degree murder conviction can include life in prison or death.
Even if a person did not intentionally mean to murder another person, they can be charged with Felony Murder is a person dies as the result of another crime being inflicted, such as: Kidnapping , Unlawful flight from law enforcement, Molestation, Robbery, Sexual Assault or Rape and Arson
In Phoenix, drug crimes and narcotics crimes can vary in severity and penalty. Conviction of a drug crime is dependent on many factors, such as: what specific drug is involved, what is the alleged behavior in connection with the drug – possession versus distribution, and how much of the drug was present at the time of arrest?
Penalties for drug and narcotic crimes can range from paying fine and probation, to serving jail time. For example, Drug possession of methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute is more serious than simply possessing a small amount of Marijuana for personal use and brings with it a mandatory prison sentence.
Below are some common drug convictions:
Distribution of narcotics, Drug trafficking, Drug cultivation, Selling drugs on the internet, Possession of a controlled substance, Transportation / importation of narcotics, Possession with the intent to distribute and Drug and weapon offenses
One of Arizona’s most frequently charged criminal offenses is Assault. Penalties for Assault can be quite severe, especially if deemed a Domestic Assault.
“Simple Assault” is classified a misdemeanor offense. It is defined by Phoenix law, as:
Domestic Violence, or an assault that is carried out on a romantic partner (past or present) or family member, is treated more harshly than Simple Assault. Penalties, if convicted of Domestic Violence Assault, include:
Fines, jail time, probation, loss of gun rights and restraining order
Across the United States, Arizona included, a minor or juvenile is defined as a person under the age of 18 years old. When convicted of a crime in Phoenix, a juvenile is treated similarly to an adult, except for the following:
The most common juvenile criminal cases tried in Phoenix courts, include:
Underage drinking, Underage DUI, Trespassing, Vandalism, Shop lifting, Theft or burglary, Alcohol possession, Drug crimes, Weapon possession and Assault
Phoenix law defines shoplifting as a person who knowingly conceals merchandise within a store or uses a container, article of clothing or some other instrument in order to take the item without purchase. Ranging from a Misdemeanor to Class 4 felony, conviction varies depending on any previous theft-related convictions and value of the item or items stolen.
In shoplifting cases, it is up to the prosecution to prove that you went to a store or business and concealed a product or products with the intent to deprive the business of those items by:
Hispanics are one of the fastest-growing ethnic groups in America; especially in Maricopa County, where the Latino Population is approximately 31% of the total population. While it may be easier to hire an English-speaking lawyer or accept an English-speaking Public Defender appointed by the court, it may come with more severe consequences if you have been convicted of crime.
When your legal team can address your specific case and details in Spanish, as well as provide court documents in Spanish, then they are better able to represent you and protect your legal rights in a Phoenix Court of Law.