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Minneapolis Criminal Defense Blog

How are assault charges different from charges for battery?

The terms assault and battery are often used interchangeably on television shows and by individuals to describe those who either threaten to or actually inflict physical harm on another person. To law enforcement and prosecutors in some states, though, they're two distinct criminal offenses.

Put quite simply, an individual may be charged with assault if they threaten or attempt to injure someone else. If they actually make contact with them in either an offensive or harmful way, then they may be charged with battery.

Don't get caught 'doctor shopping'

You absolutely have the right to seek a second -- or even third -- medical opinion when you don't think you're getting good medical care. You also have the right to change doctors simply because you don't like the doctor you have.

You cannot, however, go "doctor shopping." Doctor shopping is generally defined as going to multiple health care professionals and obtaining prescriptions for narcotics and other controlled substances without each doctor's full knowledge of who else you have seen and what prescriptions you already have.

Mail fraud is defined pretty broadly by federal officials

Of all the different federal offenses that someone can be charged with, mail fraud is perhaps the most common one.

There are two different types of actions that may result in you being charged with this crime.

Pros and cons of plea bargaining

You were arrested, bonded out and now face going to trial on criminal charges. At some point in the court proceedings, you may be approached by your criminal defense attorney to "cop a plea." Is it in your best interests to do so?

It might be, but that is never a given, and it all depends on the charges you face and the strength of the prosecution's case against you. Let's look at the arguments for and against accepting a plea bargain.

What your teen needs to know about getting arrested

As a parent, you think that your teenager will never run afoul of Minnesota laws. But all it takes is one bad decision or miscalculation to land your son or daughter into legal hot water.

If that occurs, you want them to know how to act and behave to minimize any bad outcomes. Just as we teach our kids what to do in emergencies like school shootings or car accidents, so should we prepare them ahead of time for how to act if detained by the police.

The dangers of carrying a friend’s prescription medication

People do a lot of things for their friends without really thinking about the consequences. That could include a favor such as carrying or storing prescription medication for someone else. Maybe your friend has a roommate or spouse that they worry will steal their pills. It's also possible that they are trying to wean themselves off the medication and want to limit their access to it.

Regardless of why someone asks you to store their prescription medication, the truth is that their request places you at extreme legal risk. There is serious potential for legal consequences if you get caught in possession of your friend's medication. Minnesota law has very strict rules regarding controlled substances.

What's a hate crime, and what penalties exist for committing one?

Just this past week, an openly gay African-American actor from the television show Empire was allegedly approached by two pedestrians in Chicago, taunted with racial epithets and homophobic slurs, doused with a chemical and had a rope placed around this neck. Now police are searching for suspects to charge with hate crimes. There are many different types of actions that may fall under the umbrella of this offense.

According to 18 U.S. Code § 249, a hate crime is any type of perceived or actual bodily injury committed by one person against another because of their color, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, gender, race or religion.

Debate over recreational marijuana in Minnesota gets hot

Could Minnesota become the next state to legalize recreational marijuana?

Supporters and opponents of the bid to make recreational cannabis legal recently faced off in a shouting match that was caught on camera during a news interview at the State Capitol.

What is a grand jury and why are their activities secret?

If you've been advised that you're facing federal criminal charges, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Minneapolis has likely forwarded you and your attorney a copy of your grand jury indictment as part of a discovery packet.

What exactly is a grand jury? What is the grand jury's role in your case?

How is drug possession penalized in Minnesota?

There are five types of felonies that apply to drug offenses in the state of Minnesota. County, state and federal lawmakers refer to narcotics possession by degree, with first being the most serious and fifth being the least serious of all these offenses. The penalties gradually increase depending on what type of crime a defendant is convicted of.

Fifth degree drug offenses

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Joseph S. Friedberg Chartered

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Minneapolis, MN 55415

Phone: 651-447-6719
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