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Orange County Criminal Defense Blog

When a DUI and a Hit-and-Run Overlap

By Michael Guisti on June 25, 2021

Blurry van driving through crosswalkDUIs and hit-and-runs are two of the most common vehicular crimes on California roads. Both have different legal requirements in order for a prosecutor to convict a driver; both come with their own penalties, but when these cases overlap, you need a strong defense a skilled attorney. Being convicted of a combination of DUI and hit-and-run can lead to hefty penalties and years behind bars.

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Posted in: DUI

Potential Addiction Treatment Still Considered Illegal in the United States

By Michael Guisti on June 11, 2021

Blue and white pills on white backgroundCalifornia and many other states have shifted to treating addiction rather than punishing non-violent offenders, but our country is still struggling to find a reliable means of preventing repeat abuse. Millions of individuals have been unfairly mistreated by our criminal justice system when they needed medical and psychiatric care to deal with their conditions. Given the stigma that comes with drug addiction and the difficulties of finding reliable treatment, some addicts have looked outside the United States for new treatments.

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Posted in: Drug Crimes

How to Respond to a Police Warrant

By Michael Guisti on May 12, 2021

Warrants are required for police officers to arrest suspects and acquire evidence in certain types of criminal cases. While most people have heard the terms “arrest warrant” or “search warrant” on television, many have no idea how to respond to these warrants or how to confirm whether they are legitimate.

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Posted in: Criminal Defense

When Your Car’s Black Box Becomes Evidence

By Michael Guisti on April 28, 2021

Black boxes are often mentioned after plane crashes, but most people do not realize that many other vehicles have these devices. Most modern trucking companies use black boxes to record a trucker’s actions in the event of a crash, and a recent accident involving a Tesla Model S has brought to light the importance of black-box data in improving vehicle safety.

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Posted in: Criminal Defense

How California Defines Rape and Sexual Assault

By Michael Guisti on April 14, 2021

The terms “rape” and “sexual assault” are often used interchangeably in the media, but there are clear legal differences between them. The legal definitions may seem similar, but they can make a world of difference when it comes to launching a defense in a criminal trial. A felony rape conviction can result in imprisonment in a California state prison, thousands of dollars in fines, and additional punishments, while sexual assault is a misdemeanor and a conviction can lead to a lighter sentence.

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Posted in: Sex Crimes

Honest Mistakes That Can Lead to Identity Theft Charges

By Michael Guisti on March 31, 2021

Since the massive expansion of the internet and social media over the past two decades, the news media has constantly warned people of the dangers of identity theft. Even though these types of white-collar crimes occurred long before the internet, it has made perpetrating this crime easier. While most people assume that identity theft is orchestrated by hooded hackers in their basements, the reality is that everyday people can commit this crime, and often by mistake.

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Posted in: White Collar Crimes

Understand California’s Mayhem Laws

By Michael Guisti on March 18, 2021

California courts can issue harsh punishments for violent crimes, often requiring defendants to serve long prison sentences for assault and battery, especially if the incident involved a firearm or weapon. While the majority of these cases involve physical fights or violent robberies, California also has unique laws against disfiguring a victim. A mayhem charge allows courts to punish defendants with extensive penalties for disabling or disfiguring victims.

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Posted in: Assault

When Online Messages Violate the Law

By Michael Guisti on March 4, 2021

It is almost impossible to go somewhere on the internet without encountering a massive argument. Users often use their anonymity to justify virtually screaming at each other on a variety of topics, ranging from their political views to their opinions on movies. In most cases, the arguments are harmless, but when these messages turn into online harassment or criminal threats, then it becomes a matter for the courts.

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Posted in: Criminal Defense

A Tale in Criminal Justice: STOP! (Kidnapping) In The Name Of Love. Wayne’s Story.

By Michael Guisti on February 18, 2021

Cal Pen Code § 207. Kidnapping defined:

(a) Every person who forcibly, or by any other means of instilling fear, steals or takes, or holds, detains, or arrests any person in this state, and carries the person into another country, state, or county, or into another part of the same county, is guilty of kidnapping.

One day I was sitting in my office on a late, sunny afternoon when I received a call from a young Vietnamese man. For the sake of this story, I will call him Wayne. Wayne told me that he needed help because the sheriffs were looking for him.

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Posted in: Firm News

Can a DUI Affect My Job?

By Michael Guisti on February 9, 2021

The repercussions of a DUI often set in slowly for a defendant. At first, you may be focused on just keeping your license, avoiding jail time, and paying court fees, but there are further consequences you may have to deal with. While you may try to keep your arrest a secret for fear of hurting your reputation, your employer may eventually learn about your DUI. Even worse, if you are convicted, it could impact your career and ability to find future employment down the line.

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Posted in: DUI

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