Our Inglewood Office is located at:
Law Offices of David S. Chesley, Inc.
Inglewood Criminal Defense Attorneys and DUI Lawyers
Inglewood, CA 90303
Criminal Defense Attorney in Inglewood
You’ve been accused of a crime. You’re scared. You don’t know what will happen to you. Not only are you facing an uncertain future, but everyone seems to be working against you. First, the police and then the prosecutors are trying to trip you up to find any weakness in your case that they can take advantage of.
Fortunately, you’re not alone. Hiring a criminal defense attorney puts someone on your side who is there for you. An experienced attorney knows the law and is dedicated to protecting your rights. Your criminal defense lawyer will provide you with the strongest possible protection.
At the Law Offices of David S. Chesley, Inc., we have decades of experience defending the accused in Inglewood and the surrounding areas. Whether you’re faced with a misdemeanor charge or a serious felony, our team of experienced attorneys will work tirelessly to protect your rights.
Below are some of the charges that your Inglewood defense attorney will help you navigate.
Theft is the most common crime committed in Inglewood. The term theft can cover a wide range of criminal activity, but whether you’ve been charged with petty theft or first-degree burglary, all theft crimes and considered serious offenses in the state of California.
Although each form of theft carries legal penalties, the level of the offense ranges widely depending on the amount of goods stolen and how the theft occurred. According to California’s Penal Code 484, theft of property valued at under $950 is considered “petty” theft, a misdemeanor offense. “Grand” theft, a criminal charge, involves taking property worth over $950 or stealing a car or firearms.
Penalties vary according to the severity of the offense, but any kind of theft is a very serious charge that requires the guidance of an experienced defense attorney.
Grand Theft Auto and Carjacking
Because of the value of an automobile, any vehicle theft automatically qualifies as grand theft and carries severe penalties. In addition, automobile theft is illegal under California Vehicle Code 10851. Anyone who takes or drives another party’s vehicle without their consent is subject to this code. The code applies whether the intention was to take the car for a quick joyride or keep it permanently.
When the threat or use of force is applied in the act of vehicle theft, the offense is considered carjacking, a form of robbery. For the carjacking charge to apply, the vehicle must have been taken from the victim’s immediate presence and against their will. Carjacking is punishable in California by up to 9 years in prison.
DUI (Driving Under the Influence)
Driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs is a serious offense in California, resulting in fines, jail time, and the suspension or loss of your driver’s license. The standard for what constitutes DUI for adult drivers operating a passenger vehicle is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08. This translates to about three drinks for a man weighing 140 pounds and two for a woman weighing 120 pounds.
This rate is considerably lower for people operating commercial vehicles (0.04) or drivers under 21 years of age (0.01). It is also considered a DUI offense if you drive under the influence of any illegal drugs or consume an excessive amount of legal drugs containing alcohol, such as cough syrup.
Assault and Battery
Assault and battery are also among the most common criminal charges in Inglewood. While similar to each other, assault and battery are not interchangeable offenses. According to the California Penal Code, assault is “an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability, to commit a violent injury on the person of another.” The difference between assault and battery is that while assault refers to a simple attempt or threat to use illegal force, battery denotes the actual use of force.
As with theft, there are many different forms of assault and battery which range in severity of penalty. The most severe involve assault with a deadly weapon, which can carry a sentence of up to 12 years. All assault charges, however, are serious matters which require strong legal representation.
Murder and Manslaughter
Murder is among the most serious crimes in the state of California. Defined as “the unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought,” murder can be either first- or second-degree. A first-degree murder, which is “deliberate and premeditated,” is punishable by death, life without parole, or 25 years to life. Second-degree murders, those that weren’t “deliberate and premeditated,” carry sentences of 15, 20, or 25 years to life.
Manslaughter, which refers to the unlawful killing of a person “without malice,” is a lesser but still serious charge. There are three types of manslaughter: voluntary, in which the killing is carried out in the “heat of passion”; involuntary, which occurs when illegal or negligent behavior results in death; and vehicular. Voluntary manslaughter carries a penalty of 3 to 11 years, while involuntary manslaughter carries 2 to 4.
Under California’s Street Terrorism Enforcement and Protection (STEP) Act, murders committed as part of gang activity are subject to more stringent penalties than other murders. This charge may apply even if you are not a member of the gang, as long as you participated in the violent act to benefit the gang. Because of the enhanced charges, it is especially important that you seek an experienced attorney if you’re faced with gang-related murder charges.
You Need an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney
David S. Chesley and his team of experienced Inglewood criminal lawyers are dedicated to providing you with the best criminal defense representation possible. If you’re accused of any crime or misdemeanor in Inglewood, you need an attorney who will stand up for your rights and who knows the local court system inside and out. Our legal team comprises criminal defense lawyers, former prosecutors, police officers, and investigators who have decades of experience in all areas of the criminal justice system.
Visit our website or call us today at (424) 331-0988 for a free consultation.