All crimes alleged and committed in Kansas are considered crimes against the state. The Kansas prosecutor (District Attorney) is tasked with protecting the general public through the criminal justice system. When you are accused of a crime, it is not "You vs. Alleged Victim". It is "You vs. The State of Kansas". So can the alleged victim drop the charges against you? No. Only the prosecutor can. In fact, if you try to convince a victim not to proceed you may be charged with witness tampering and/or violation of a protection order. In some instances these can become additional felony charges. Particularly where the charges are of domestic violence, sex crimes, other violent charges, the alleged victim will be assigned a "Victim's Advocate". This person will provide support and a voice (not testimony but help with communicating) throughout your prosecution.
You may be wondering what happens if the alleged victim says they won't testify, doesn't want to pursue the case, has relocated and/or wasn't the person to contact police. It depends. Depending on the severity of the charges, and the Kansas prosecutor assigned to your case, they may subpoena this person. That will make it an Order of the court for them to testify. In some cases, it is possible to proceed with the matter without the testimony of the alleged victim through use of prior statements, witness testimony, 911 calls, etc.. Charges related to sex crimes, child abuse and domestic violence are most often faced with this possibility. However, that does weaken the State's case and your attorney will likely file objections against it. In addition, if there is an uncooperative or unresponsive alleged victim any plea agreements may be better than if they had full involvement of the alleged victim.
Tip: By the way, in cases of domestic battery or abuse, the alleged victim sometimes appears in court asking for restrictions, restraints, no contact orders, etc. to be removed. They even sometimes come to seek reduction in bond or to suggest it was their fault. Well intending as they are, this can backfire. A savvy prosecutor will ask the Court to give oral Orders (that allows them to escape serving a physical subpoena) requiring their return to all remaining hearings against you through trial. What does that mean? That the State will highly likely push forward with the case against you.
Don't confuse this with the civil filing of a Kansas Protection from Abuse (PFA) request or Order. Those, by motion, can be removed at the request of the parties.
You probably have questions about your specific case. Don't wait. Call Attorney T. Morton today (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
Yes! Even if you think you have a sweet deal on the table, you still need a lawyer. Kansas prosecutors simply don't have time to take every case to trial. As discussed in a prior blog, there is a standard offer that will be issued to nearly every person with the same (or similar charges) as you. They get the win this way too. Here's the catch. The prosecutor can make you any offer they see appropriate; however, only the judge can sentence you AND that judge does not have to follow the agreement. If you charged with a felony a Presentence Investigation Report will be given to the Court. In both felony and misdemeanor cases, plea agreements alert you that if your criminal background could change your position on the sentencing grid, that you can be sentenced to the full extent of the law (even if you don't recall the former charges). This is especially important in Kansas sex crimes, felonies, DUIs, juvenile and domestic violence case. There may be a need to argue against the calculation of your prior convictions. Even if you don't have any priors, sentencing is a hearing of it's own, has special rules and rights, and you should not do that alone.
Remember: Once you enter your agreement, there is very limited timeframe when you are permitted to withdraw your agreement and set the matter for trial. You cannot withdraw an agreement on the day of sentencing.
Attorneys are costly but entering into agreements blindly is more costly. This case may be your first, and maybe your last crime but, you must plan for the future. What you accept in the Diversion and/or a Plea can be negotiated and will impact other parts of your life. Call Attorney T. Morton NOW (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
Once charged with a sex crime against a child, and if you plan to take your case to trial, you may wonder if the alleged victim will be called to testify. If you know anything about your right to confront your accuser, then you probably think the child should testify. However, some believe that children cannot be asked to testify. This blog will help demystify the question of, "Can a child be called to testify against you in a sex crimes case?" The short answer is "yes". Kansas statute does allow (and sometimes demands) for children to testify, in any case where they are victims, or witnesses, of crimes, to include sex crimes. The case of State v. Eaton does a great job of outlining some of the nuances related to child witnesses. Here's a summary:
By the way, you cannot exclude the child from testifying because it would be traumatic to them and/or unreliable. Rather, your attorney will have to work to point to the deficiencies in the testimony offered. This is typically done by pointing out inaccuracies in statements, excluding witnesses or experts, cross-examination, filing applicable motions (ex. Motion to Suppress), etc..
Tip: Don't confuse a criminal sex crimes case with a Kansas Child in Need of Care (CINC) case. CINC cases are civil matters, and your rights and the burden of proof are different; therefore, how the child is permitted/required to testify varies. Remember though, these two cases can be run together or apart, and what occurs in one will likely impact the other.
If you have questions about your specific case call NOW (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
It is possible to be taken into custody by the state of Kansas in several ways - extradition, bench warrant, arrest warrant or immediate arrest. Should this happen to you law enforcement generally cannot hold you in custody forever without the opportunity to bail or bond out. You are innocent until proven guilty. These terms are used interchangeable, are similar in purpose, but have different meanings. Bail is the money you pay to get out of jail. Bond is the money someone else pays to get you out (usually a bondsman). Here are several bond and bail options:
Now that you know about Kansas bonds and bails you may be wondering if you need an attorney. You do! In fact, the amount of bond, the conditions of bond and terms of your release (especially in sex crimes and domestic violence cases) can only be argued if you know what those are. Additionally, if you wish to seek a reduction in bond you must either file a formal motion or make oral arguments directly to the court. The decision will be made by the judge based on case precedent not your opinion.
Have more questions? Call Attorney T. Morton NOW 913-602-7288. Payment plans are available.
Kansas, like other states, has a system of resolving criminal cases without trial. Don't fool yourself into thinking that the District Attorney's Office regularly dismisses cases. Actually, that happens very rarely. Instead many cases are resolved by agreement between you and the State. This is called a plea bargain. Here are the terms of typical agreement in Kansas:
If you are offered a plea agreement in a Kansas criminal case you should consult an attorney before signing it. The Court does not have to follow the agreement and you can be sentenced up to the full penalty allowed by the sentencing grid. Call Attorney T. Morton NOW for your free consultation (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
The last blog discussed what to expect during a Kansas police investigation. This blog will focus on the commonly used interrogation style called the "Reid Technique". Again, by the time law enforcement has decided that they need to speak with you, they believe that you have committed a crime and need only confess. They will limit your how much you speak and apply pressure to get you to admit to a crime. Here are the 9 steps:
It is hard, but not impossible, to overcome signed or oral confessions. For that reason, anytime you have been arrested, or asked to give a statement, you should be represented. If you are in such a circumstance feel free to call Attorney T. Morton (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
Did you know that Kansas police go through multi-day trainings to learn how to interrogate you? One of the most common forms of interrogation is called the Reid Technique. This form of questions is coming from the position that you committed a crime and now must confess. Here are the typical steps they will take while getting your statements:
Attorney T. Morton suggests that you never participate in an investigation without representation. If you have been contacted by Kansas law enforcement, or have been arrested, call NOW (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
Arrest is never the first step in a sex crime in Kansas. Rather, sex crimes investigations can take weeks, months or even years before you are arrested. Here is what you should know about Kansas sex crimes investigations:
Tips: If you have landed on this blog you likely know, or have suspicion, that you are under investigation. First of all, don't ignore that. Get a sex crimes defense attorney NOW. Second of all, refuse to give statements or possessions. Finally, don't talk about this with anyone but an attorney.
One more thing. If the allegations are surrounding your child(ren), you have or work with children, a separate, but simultaneous, abuse investigation will occur involving Kansas Child Protective Services (DCF). Anything you say or do in those cases will be cross-shared with Kansas police.
Sex crimes are aggressively prosecuted in Kansas, and have lengthy prison and public offender registration time attached (ex. Jessica's Law and off-grid felony). Click HERE to see the sex crimes sentencing grid and to find out more about your specific circumstances. You do have defense and it is possible to avoid being charged with a sex crime. Call Attorney T. Morton today for your free consultation (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.
Being investigated, have a warrant or already arrested in Kansas? Then you are probably aware that you need a criminal defense attorney. The necessity of counsel is so great that if you are indigent you may qualify for a free, or low cost, attorney. If you prefer to have private counsel, as many do, then this is likely something you haven't been saving up for. Who saves just in case they get in criminal trouble, right? For that reason, Attorney T. Morton strives to meet you where you are at. Here is a general breakdown of how much it costs to hire this office:
Remember: The complexity of your case and number of crimes involved will cause your fees to increase and vary. This fee will include all matters directly related to your case up to trial; however, some Motions and matters will require additional fees. If your case is, or becomes, more complex than initially disclosed the fee may also increase. All fees are fixed and non-refundable because efforts and resources devoted to your case, and/or conflicts of interest inherent in said matter, may preclude your attorney from accepting other engagements. Should you decide to take your case to trial we will discuss the trial plan and the additional costs required.
The best thing you can do is call a lawyer today. All forms of payments are accepted, to include credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, etc.), PayPal, Zelle and Venmo. Call NOW 913-602-7288 for your free consultation and to protect your freedom.
Anytime you are suspected of driving under the influence Kansas law enforcement can lawfully request that you submit to testing. If you either refuse or physically cannot complete roadside test, the officer may request that you to submit to a blood test. However, this is a request not something they can automatically force you to do. If you agree to your blood being drawn you likely will waive all potential objections to the findings. If you refuse to allow your blood to be drawn the officer must request a search warrant to complete the task over your objections. Similarly, if you require medical treatment related to an accident, injury or illness the Kansas police cannot force the hospital to draw, or release, your blood without a valid warrant. In fact, if your blood was gained by law enforcement unlawfully, the related results may be inadmissible in the case against you. While you have the right to refuse, and if your blood sample was not collected or provided to the police immediately, just know that the Court's have the authority to issue warrants to the hospital (weeks and months later) if cause is established.
Remember: It is your right to refuse DUI roadside testing and/or blood testing; however, driving is a privilege not a right. You may have separate consequence, related to your driver's license, for refusing. Click HERE for more information.
Whether you submitted to roadside or blood DUI testing (even if you failed), or refused, you still may have defenses. Call Attorney T. Morton TODAY to find out more about hiring a DUI defense attorney (913) 602-7288. Payment plans are available.