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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Bus Driver Charged With Lewd & Lascivious Acts Against Children

Pictured Above: Shane Norman Crawford. Source: Orange County Sheriff's Department.

Shane Norman Crawford, a Laguna Hills school bus driver, is in custody on suspicion of lewd and lascivious acts against three children. Allegedly, Crawford took three children under 14-years-old to his apartment after earning the trust of their parents. He then committed lewd acts on the children. One child's grandmother found out what happened and reported Crawford to authorities. Although Crawford did not meet these children through his job, authorities are worried that there are other victims because of his proximity to children because of his job.

Sexual assault of a child under 14-years-old can be referred to as lewd or lascivious conduct. Being convicted of this type of assault comes with prison time. The amount of time in prison is dependent on the harm caused, the age of the child, the facts of the case, and the defendant's prior history. In addition, the defendant will have to register as a sex offender which can affect that person's career and/or reputation. The defendant will also likely have to go through psychological treatment or behavioral therapy. If you are convicted of sexual assault, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away to assist you. Common defenses to sexual offenses include false accusations, mistake/accident, lack of intent.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Marines Murder Fellow Marine Over Stolen Drug Money

Pictured Above: Christian William Carney and Alvin Reed Lovely. Source: Orange County District Attorney's Office.

Christian William Carney and Alvin Reed Lovely, former Camp Pendleton Marines, have been charged with murdering a fellow Marine. Carney was a drug dealer who sold Cocaine and Ecstasy while stationed at Camp Pendleton. Carney and Lovely believed that Marine Stephen Serrano had stolen Carney's drug money from Carney's room. Therefore, in May of 2008, Carney and Lovely drove Serrano to a secluded area in Orange County and shot him four times, killing him. Carney was charged and convicted of murder, criminal threats and dissuading a witness. He will be sentenced in January of 2012 and is expected to face a maximum sentence of 28 years and eight months to life in prison.

California Penal Code ยง187 defines murder as the unlawful and unjustified killing of another human being with malice aforethought. First-degree murder is murder committed with premeditation and deliberation. Premeditation means that the defendant rationally considered the timing or method of doing the act in order to either increase the likelihood of success or to evade detection. Deliberation means that the defendant has weighed the motives for the act against its consequences before deciding to engage in that act. If a murder has been committed with both premeditation and deliberation, you will be charged with first-degree murder. If you are charged with murder, or any other serious crime, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away to assist you in reducing your sentence.

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Two Women Charged with Forgery, Grand Theft & Embezzlement

Pictured Above: Alexa Polar and Robin Pabello. Source: KABC.

Two Garden Grove roommates were arrested and charged with two felony counts of forgery, a felony count of grand theft, a felony count of grand theft by embezzlement, and a sentencing enhancement of white-collar crime over $100,000. Alexa Polar worked as a paralegal at a law firm. Polar and her roommate, Robin Pabello, stole a $19,500 check made payable to the firm. They then altered the check to make it payable to Pabello in the amount of $285,000. Once altered, they deposited the check into their account, chartered a private jet to New York City and went on a shopping spree. Polar and Pabello are also accused of stealing cashiers checks to purchase a home in Murietta.

Forgery occurs when you knowingly alter, create, or use a written document with the intent to commit a fraud.  Embezzlement is unlawfully taking something that has been entrusted to you. Embezzlement is usually seen in employment situations. Embezzlement is punished as either grand theft or petty theft, depending on the amount that was embezzled. A common defense to forgery and embezzlement is the lack of intent to steal or defraud. If you are charged with forgery, embezzlement or a white collar crime, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away to assist you in fighting your charges or reducing your sentence.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Neighbor Charged For Mobile Home Murder

Pictured Above: Robert Eugene Vasquez. Source: Orange County Register.

Robert Eugene Vasquez is charged with special circumstances murder by lying in wait, aggravated assault, and a sentencing enhancement for the use of a deadly weapon. These charges stem from an incident occurring on December 1, 2011, in which Vasquez was waiting outside of his neighbor's mobile home with the intention of murdering him. When Vasquez's neighbor, Bobby Ray Rainwater Jr., came out of his home, Vasquez punched Rainwater in the back of the head and then stabbed him multiple times until Rainwater died. Two days later, Vasquez went to another residence in San Juan Capistrano and hit victim Lance Lyon in the face as he was laying down. Vasquez was arrested for these crimes and is currently in an Orange County jail awaiting his arraignment.

If someone is charged with a special circumstance murder, the state may sentence them to life in prison or even to the death penalty. Special circumstances include murdering a police officer or judge, murder by destructive device, murder committed while lying in wait, murder committed for racist or religious motives, and a  murder committed during the commission of an enumerated felony. If you are charged with murder, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away to assist you in fighting your charges or reducing your sentence. Common defenses to murder include mistaken identity, accident, self defense, the defense of other, and insanity.

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