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Author Archives: Jim Michael

Common Defenses to Criminal Charges in Georgia

If you’re charged with a crime in Georgia, you don’t have to prove your innocence, but you may be able to raise defenses that will weaken or defeat the prosecution’s case. You must prove the essential facts of your defense, but your burden in doing so is far lower than the prosecution’s burden of proof… Read More »

Marijuana Offenses Can Still Put You in Jail in Georgia

American attitudes about marijuana use have changed significantly in the past few decades. A Gallup poll published in 2021 reflects that 68 percent of Americans believe that marijuana use should be legal. In line with evolving public sentiment, many states have changed their criminal laws regarding marijuana. In some states, possession of marijuana for personal… Read More »

What is Reckless Conduct and How is it Punished?

Reckless conduct is a crime in Georgia. It can be charged if one person causes physical harm to another person or threatens the physical safety of another person, even without causing damage. This can be done in a number of ways, including putting another person at risk of exposure to a disease. Under Georgia statute,… Read More »

Georgia’s “Porch Piracy” Law Makes Package Theft a Felony

In June 2021, Georgia joined a handful of other states that have enacted laws meant to tamp down on the growing problem of packages being stolen from front stoops of homes after being delivered. The new law makes “porch piracy” a crime distinct from federal mail theft. Porch piracy is defined as removing three or… Read More »

What Are Your Rights and Obligations When Pulled Over for DUI?

Being stopped on suspicion of drunk driving can be scary, but it’s important to remember that you have rights, and if those rights are violated, you may be able to have your charges dismissed or reduced. On the other hand, you have to follow certain procedures and police officer requests during the stop. If you… Read More »

Raising the “Stand Your Ground” Defense in a Georgia Criminal Case

Unfortunately, the day may come when you need to defend yourself against someone you believe is about to injure or kill you. Georgia law gives you the right to protect yourself from such attacks, but your defensive actions must be reasonable in light of the severity of the threat. Georgia’s Stand Your Ground law is… Read More »

Sharp Increase in Georgia Violent Crime Leads to Calls for More Mandatory Minimum Sentences

As a result of an alarming rise in violent crimes, Georgia law enforcement officials are urging legislation that would impose mandatory minimum sentences for a wider range of crimes than are prescribed under current law. Police and sheriffs across the state seek to bar early release for any crime involving use of knives or firearms,… Read More »

Georgia Sex Offender Registration and How to Get Off the List

Being convicted of a sex crime can have severe long-term consequences. Besides probation and possible jail time and parole, you will likely end up on Georgia’s Violent Sexual Offender Registry. This will have a significant impact on your life, as it restricts your access to residences, jobs, schools and certain public places. You must register… Read More »

Drug Trafficking That Causes Overdose Can Lead to Felony Murder Charges

On October 15, 2021, prosecutors in Gwinnett County obtained a felony murder conviction of an accused drug dealer for distributing drugs that caused a fatal overdose. The man, Eric Denver Moore, pleaded guilty to charges of selling heroin laced with fentanyl, which caused the death of the drug user. Moore was sentenced to life in… Read More »

Are Embezzlement and Conversion the Same Crime in Georgia?

Embezzlement is a crime with a long history in common law. It is defined as legally receiving someone else’s property under an agreement and then exercising control over that property in violation of the agreement. Yet, the term “embezzlement” does not appear in Georgia’s criminal statutes. Instead, the same crime is called conversion. The elements… Read More »