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The biggest reason for wrongful convictions

A wrongful conviction is devastating. The justice system is supposed to be on your side, but now you're going to jail for something you did not do. It feels unjust and unfair and surreal.

Even though the American justice system is designed to prevent this from happening, it still does happen. An untold number of people have been put behind bars unjustly. What is the biggest reason why this happens?

Meth overdoses push drug fatalities to record high in Colorado

Though much of the focus has been on the opioid epidemic, methamphetamine use is still a major problem in Colorado. In El Paso County, deaths from meth use almost doubled from 2016 to 2017. The Pueblo Chieftain states the use of meth also helped push Colorado drug fatalities to over 1,000 in 2017. This is a record number of drug deaths for the state.

Opioids are still the top reason people die from drug overdoses, but meth is the drug with the fastest growing number of fatalities in the state.

3 sources of DUI case evidence that could help your defense

Technology has come a long way in recent years, and although police are using new technology to convict DUI defendants who might not have been convicted otherwise -- some DUI defendants are also using technology to succeed in their defenses. Here are three ways that DUI defense lawyers are beginning to use technology to help their clients:

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Colorado felonies and penalties vary based on several factors

If you are facing a criminal charge in Colorado, you probably have a lot of questions. Many of these can be answered by your legal counsel, while others you can get answers to if you know what suspects of various crimes may face in a court of law.

Felonies are the most serious type of crime, and they are divided into classes to denote the severity of the crime. Higher classes of felonies may open convicted criminals to higher punishments. The sentencing guidelines for judges can range from a year in prison to life behind bars to capital punishment for the most serious crimes.

Police bust Colorado 'chop shop' for stolen bicycles

Grand Valley has become a popular destination for bicycle enthusiasts with its beautiful trails and lush scenery. Unfortunately, it also has become a popular target for bike thieves.

On Aug. 21, Grand Junction police planted a mountain bike outfitted with GPS and video on a bike rack near Colorado Mesa University. The nearly $4,000 bike was stolen in the early morning hours of the next day. The Daily Sentinel stated that the video revealed two suspected bike thieves, Tristin Bales and Brenda Goff, making off with the bike.

Accused of sex crimes? Avoid doing these things

Being accused of any crime at all is difficult to deal with, but allegations of sex crimes can be particularly devastating. A successful conviction on charges related to sex crimes can cost you your freedom and have a profoundly negative effect on your personal relationships. Such a conviction can also make it difficult to find employment and housing even after you have paid for your alleged crime.

We know how serious these allegations are, and we know defendants desperately want to clear their names. However, taking the wrong steps could make the situation even worse for defendants in Colorado. Before doing anything, it is wise to speak with a criminal defense attorney for advice about your unique circumstances.

What do I have to prove as a criminal defendant?

If you've been arrested or accused of a crime -- no matter what the circumstances -- you have the legal right to defend yourself in court. You also have the legal right to an attorney who will represent you and assist you in defending yourself. During your defense, however, you are not required to prove anything.

The so-called "burden of proof" lies entirely with the prosecution in your case. Furthermore, this burden of proof will be high, and no conviction will occur until -- and only if -- the prosecution can prove your guilt "beyond a reasonable doubt." Until this occurs, the court will presume you are innocent.

Recent Colorado Springs case highlights felony menacing

In a recent Colorado Springs case, a man held a gun to the head of another. In that moment, the suspect had all the power. No one could control what he did next.

While that is certainly true, the Colorado court system will now be responsible for deciding how the suspect spends the next several years of his life. 

Peer pressure, teens and crime: A clear link

When examining why people commit crimes, one of the reasons -- though not typically thought of as a primary one -- is that they face peer pressure. In other words, someone else convinces the person to commit a crime that he or she would not have carried out otherwise.

This is most dangerous when the person being pressured is relatively immature. One study found that the level of immaturity connects directly to the impact level of that negative influence.

Colorado penalties for domestic violence crimes

Domestic violence is a common crime throughout Colorado and one that can lead to serious consequences. Those who have been arrested and accused of this crime need to know what type of penalties they will face if convicted. Domestic violence is not covered by one specific statute in Colorado, but there are still penalties for the commission of such a crime.

The biggest penalty that an offender can be sentenced to when convicted of domestic violence is prison time. You might spend months to years in jail after a conviction. It all depends on the case and its circumstances.

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