Understanding Circumstantial Evidence in Virginia Criminal Courts

In many criminal cases, the Commonwealth cannot prove a case by direct evidence. Direct evidence is evidence such as eyewitness testimony, scientific evidence, or a confession. If the Commonwealth … [Read more...]

Public Place requirement in Virginia Criminal Law

Many crimes require that the action occur in a public place. Probably the best known is being drunk in public. The law does not prevent someone from being intoxicated in the comfort of their own home … [Read more...]

Murphy’s Effect on Sports Gambling in Virginia

On May 14, 2018 the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) that has prohibited any state (except Nevada, Montana, Oregon, and Delaware who already … [Read more...]

Changes to the Larceny Threshold in Virginia Criminal Courts

  On July 1, 2018, the threshold amount for a felony larceny will increase from $200 to $500. This is the first increase in the amount in Virginia in almost 40 years. The larceny threshold … [Read more...]

Reporting Accidents in Virginia: Not Just the Driver’s Responsibility for a Hit and Run

In Virginia it is important to know that passengers, not just the driver, can be criminally charged with failure to report an accident.  If an accident occurs, every person in the car who is 16 years … [Read more...]

Possession of Drugs – Actual vs. Constructive in Virginia

When a person is charged with the possession of drugs, it is not required that the person actually had the drugs on their person.  Typically, the Commonwealth can prove that someone is possessing … [Read more...]

Specificity Matters: Suspect’s request for a “Lawyer, Dog” ambiguous

http://www.nola.com/crime/index.ssf/2017/10/orleans_rape_suspects_lawyer_d.html Almost everyone is aware of the rights that a criminal suspect is entitled to when questioning by the police.  These … [Read more...]

Opioid Epidemic in Virginia

On October 26, 2017, President Trump declared a national health emergency due to the opiate epidemic in the United States. In Virginia, deaths related to opiate overdose have sharply increased over … [Read more...]

DNA Evidence and Virginia Criminal Law – The Truth Behind the Myth

Over the past twenty years, DNA evidence has become inextricably linked to crime scene investigation and criminal justice.  Almost every crime television show has every crime solved by a quick DNA … [Read more...]

Virginia and the First Offender Program for Possession of a Controlled Substance

In Virginia, a first offender program is available for those charged with drug possession, regardless of the type of drug.  Va Code § 18.2-251 outlines the criteria by which first offenders may be … [Read more...]