3 Things You Didn't Know About Criminal Defense

Criminal defense is a vast and complex legal discipline. With literally hundreds of illegal acts and countless degrees of severity, maneuvering the world of criminal defense at the Lake of the Ozarks can feel overwhelming. Fortunately, O'Donnell Law Center is here to make the process easier on you. If you are facing criminal charges (or believe you may soon be charged), our criminal defense attorney in Osage Beach. MO is always available for a consultation. This week, we are here to shed some light on lesser known aspects of criminal law in Missouri.

1. The Penalties For Stealing In Missouri Vary Depending On The Value Of The Item(s) Stolen.
Stealing (including "shoplifting") is a criminal offense punishable by steep penalties. Even for first offenses, those accused of stealing may be subject to expensive fines and substantial jail or prison time. Here is a quick breakdown of how these crimes are punishable in Missouri in 2016.  These penalties are scheduled to change substantially in Missouri in 2017:
  • The theft of an item or items worth up to $500 may be punished by up to 1 year confinement and a fine of $1,000. *
  • The theft of an item or items worth $500-$25,000 may be punished by up to 7 years confinement and a fine of up to $5,000-$20,000.
  • The theft of an item or items worth $25,000 or more may be punished by 5-15 years confinement.
* Higher, felony-level penalties may apply even for people who steal at the misdemeanor-level (sometimes referred to as "shoplifting") if they have been found guilty of two or more prior misdemeanor-level stealing offenses. 

2. Minor In Possession Laws Vary Slightly For Restaurant Staff.

Under Missouri law, anyone under the age of 21 is not allowed to consume, sell, purchase, handle, or possess alcoholic beverages. (There are a few exceptions, such as a student who is enrolled in a culinary course and is required to consume or taste an alcoholic beverages as part of the course.) However, the laws do vary slightly for restaurant employees. If they are at least 18 years of age, servers are allowed to serve and accept payment for alcoholic beverages. However, workers must be at least 21 in order to mix or pour drinks behind the bar.

3. Law Enforcement May Apply For A Search Warrant if a Driver Refuses To Take A Blood Test When Suspected Of Driving While Intoxicated.

When a driver is pulled over for suspicion of driving while intoxicated, law enforcement may request a breath or blood test to reveal the driver's blood alcohol content. If a driver refuses to take this test, law enforcement may apply for a search warrant from a judge that allows them to have the driver's blood drawn to determine the level of blood alcohol content. If the judge grants the search warrant and the driver's blood is drawn, the driver may still be subject to a suspension for refusing to submit to the initial request for a test.

O'Donnell Law Center Is Here For Your Criminal Defense Needs
Criminal defense is vast and complex. This article aims to uncover just a few of the lesser known aspects of the criminal defense arena. If you have questions about your specific criminal defense case, contact our criminal defense team in Osage Beach MO for a consultation. We will strive to ease your burden in any way we can.

We Carry Your Burden ~ You Carry On With Life.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is created by the publication of this blog.

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Phone: (573) 552-0317

O'Donnell Law Center, LLC

1026 Palisades Blvd. Suite 3
Osage Beach, MO  65065


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