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By lawofficeo89441385 24 May, 2017
In August 2016, the Michigan Domestic Personal Protection Order (PPO) statute was amended to allow Courts to include provisions to protect animals belonging to victims of domestic violence. The Courts may restrain a person from injuring, neglect, removing the animal from the victim, or possessing the animal against the will of the victim. The law also defined the term “ownership interest” in order to provide the protection needed.The term “animal” refers to any animal, whether it’s the person’s fish, cat, dog, pig, or even livestock. Many people have therapy pets or pets to assist those with disabilities. Laws come about due to a societal need. An article was published not long ago with research showing that 99% of Americans consider their pet to be a member of their family. It revealed that with families characterized by domestic violence, up to 87% of animal cruelty acts were committed in the presence of abused women, and 25% were committed in the presence of children. The impact of such violence cannot be underestimated. The connection between domestic violence and animal abuse is now recognized by law. When abusive partners target a helpless animal, they inflict not only pain to the animal, but long-lasting emotional damage to every other family member.For anyone interested in learning more about this topic, or for a list of sources, please refer to our web page to review an article written by Robert Mendham published in the Michigan Family Law Journal. You must know your rights. At the Gani Law Firm we have represented many individuals in a wide variety of criminal and civil matters. The Gani Law Firm is located at 1005 S. Washington Avenue in Lansing, Michigan. Please call Sal Gani at 517-372-8944 if you have any questions. Disclaimer: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters, and electronic mail. Reviewing this information or contacting us alone does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. You should not rely upon any information as legal advice.
By lawofficeo89441385 30 Jan, 2017
How should an attorney approach your defense? Do everything in our power to win. How do we do this? Use the law to your advantage. How does the typical arrest occur once you are pulled over?1. DID THE OFFICER HAVE A VALID LEGAL REASON TO MAKE THE TRAFFIC STOP? The officer must have valid probable cause to stop your vehicle in the first place. If it was not a valid traffic stop, even if you are intoxicated, it might lead to a dismissal, or an acceptable deal. Stopping you because the officer observed you leave the bar is not a valid cause to make a traffic stop. Traveling at 2:00 a.m. is not a basis for a stop. Without valid cause, the attorney should move to suppress evidence obtained against you.2. IF THERE IS A VALID CAUSE TO MAKE A TRAFFIC STOP, DID THE OFFICER HAVE PROBABLE CAUSE TO QUESTION YOU FOR DRUNK OR DRUGGED DRIVING? Unless you offer or exhibit probable cause you are driving drunk, drugged, or impaired, the officer should simply give you a ticket for the driving offense you were stopped for and send you on your way. They are trained to engage you in communication to see if circumstances suggest you might be intoxicated, and continue to question you until you provide sufficient basis you are not under the influence, or giving them reason to allow them to ask you to exit your car to perform sobriety tests. Unfortunately, many people start talking too much and think they can convince an officer they were not drinking. There is no excuse for driving while intoxicated. However, a driver might not be intoxicated when stopped, but their actions lead an officer to think they are. Typically, the officer claims your eyes were blood shot, you smelled of alcohol, and your speech was slurred. Is it possible your eyes were watery from contacts, you had only one drink, and your natural speech pattern is not what the officer thinks is normal? Yes. Is it possible you were not intoxicated? Yes. If the evidence does not support probable cause you are operating a vehicle in violation of the law, you should not be unreasonably detained on the roadside, and if your rights are violated, the case should be dismissed. Is it possible you are not intoxicated at the time you are stopped, but by the time you get to the station and take the Data master breath test your limit has risen to a point above the legal limit? Yes. That is why it is so important you obtain an experienced attorney. 3. SHOULD THE OFFICER HAVE THE RIGHT TO REQURIE YOU TO PERFORM STANDARDIZED SOBRIETY TESTS? Only if the police officer has probable cause to believe you might be operating a vehicle above the legal limit, drugged, or impaired, should you be required to submit to sobriety tests. If there is sufficient probable cause, the officer must perform the standardized tests, and not tests he or she otherwise feels appropriate. If they failed to require you to perform the standard tests, we push to dismiss as most non-standardized tests are not reliable. The three standard tests are:a. The Horizontal Nystagmus which you might think of as the officer moving a finger in front of your face from side to side, shoulder to shoulder, and having you follow with your eyes only. If the test is not performed as required by the rules, we move to suppress evidence obtained;b. Walk and Turn. The officer first must demonstrate the test and have you walk nine steps on an imaginary line counting out loud, turn 180 degrees and then walk nine steps back, all without major imperfections of stepping off the imaginary line. Failure of the officer to follow rules should result in suppression of evidence;c. One Leg Stand – The officer must first demonstrate and then have you stand with your arms at your side and one foot lifted off the ground for about 30 seconds without needing to rest your foot on the ground.There are many rules the officer must follow when administering these tests. If they fail to follow the rules, the evidence could be suppressed. This should lead to a resolution acceptable to you. The fact still remains that if you are intoxicated you should not be driving. Getting a drunk driver off the road may save your life, the life of a loved one, or the life of the driver. We never forget that fact that your constitutional rights must also be protected. An experienced attorney knows how to protect your rights.4. WHAT HAPPENS IF THE OFFICER CLAIMS YOU FAILED THE SOBRIETY TEST? Only if you failed the sobriety test as prescribed by law, or other probable cause exists, should an officer request you take the preliminary breath test (PBT). Do you have to take the PBT? No. If you don’t, the result will be a two (2) point civil infraction and money fine - not loss of your license. (Do not confuse this with the other test you are offered at the police station) If you take the PBT test and blow above the legal limit, you have offered evidence of your guilt. If you do not take the test, the officer has less evidence to support the basis of arrest if you are arrested.5. WILL I BE ARRESTED? If the officer claims you failed the sobriety tests, and/or the results of the PBT were above the legal limit, you will probably be arrested. You should remain silent on the trip to the station. The attorney will review the video of the roadside sobriety tests, your roadside actions, and of the ride to the station, for any violations of your rights.6. WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I GET TO THE POLICE STATION? Luckily, the entire event should be on video. We obtain the video and verify your rights were not violated. The officers must first have you placed in an area where you can be viewed for at least 15 minutes continuously to make sure you do not burp, vomit, regurgitate, or place anything in your mouth, otherwise the test is flawed. The start and end time of the observation period must be documented. They must then have you take the data master test (breath test), where they generally take two samples within 10 minutes, and have no variation of more than .02 within the 10 minute period. Failure of the officer to strictly adhere to all rules and regulations could result in suppression of evidence and hopefully dismissal of the charges.7. WHAT IF I REFUSE OR AM UNABLE TO BLOW HARD ENOUGH FOR THE DATAMASTER BREATH TEST? You will be taken to a certified location, usually the hospital, for a blood draw. If the blood results confirm you were above the legal limit, or you were operating with drugs in your system, criminal charges will be filed. It can take up to four months for the results to come back in some districts before charges are filed pending results of the tests. If it is claimed you intentionally failed to give a proper breath sample you will be issued a citation for “refusal” and your license will be suspended after 10 days unless you appeal to the Secretary of State for a hearing. It is difficult to win those hearings. We often suggest to our clients to refuse the breath test on the road, but to submit to the data master test at the station. Once the breath test results are returned, we have the opportunity to consults with experts to challenge the validity of the testing procedure if any irregularities are uncovered.8. WHAT HAPPENS IF CHARGES ARE FILED?You are taken to jail and should be released once your blood alcohol level is below a limit set by jail policy, usually a .03. You will be given several pieces of paper, including a paper driver’s license as they will keep your driver’s license. You will be told when to appear in Court. You should not proceed without an attorney. Below is a general outline of the process:a. Arraignment. Your first appearance before a Judge or magistrate in the District where the alleged offense occurred to be informed of the charges, maximum punishment by law, and offered the opportunity to speak as to why you should be released on bail.b. Pretrial. A few weeks after the Arraignment, a hearing will be set for the defense attorney to speak with the prosecutor. The attorney will have had the opportunity to review the police report and make an initial determination or your defenses, if a plea agreement should be entertained, or if hearings should be set to challenge evidence.c. Motion Practice. If there is a basis to challenge evidence, or conduct of the officers, hearings can be set to have a Judge review challenges in hopes of suppressing evidence.d. Jury Selection. If the prosecutor and defense attorney are not able to come to agreement on a resolution acceptable to you, the case will most likely proceed to Trial. The Court usually sets a date allow us to pick a jury through a process known as voir dire. We are afforded the opportunity to speak with each juror and ask them questions about their individual biases and thoughts.e. Trial. You have a constitutional right to have a jury of your peers be the judges of your conduct. The prosecutor must prove you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.An attorney needs to be mindful of the fact that while it may be a typical day for us working on your case, that day is still probably one of the most difficult days of your life. “Bedside” manners are important to us. A person must be informed of the process and know what to expect when they get to Court at every stage.RECENT SUCCESS STORIESDRUNK DRIVING CHARGE DISMISSED Client was charged with OWI for being behind the steering wheel of his vehicle, passed out, with the motor running, the gear shift in park, with a blood test of over .22. Almost three times the legal limit. An agreement to accept responsibility to something not related to a motor vehicle was an absolute win. How? There are many technical rules and requirements which apply. If the vehicle is safely parked and not moving, it can be determined to be used as a shelter and not as a vehicle. As an example, if you are intoxicated and have the motor running for heat, and not running with intent to operate, you may not be violating the law. Every case is a “case by case” example. In this case, we showed the prosecutor the facts clearly supported a dismissal. They agreed.DRUNK DRIVING CHARGE DISMISSED. Client was charged with OWI. He was observed running a stop sign. They reported he had blood shot eyes, slurred speech, and smelled of alcohol. The officer claimed he failed all of the standard sobriety tests, and failed the PBT. The fact is that all of the above was true. Why a dismissal? We proved the officer waited an unreasonable amount of time in performing the sobriety tests which interfered with the reliability of the test results. Again, the laws also work in your favor, and not only against you. There are laws that mandate an officer follow proper procedure timely. Failure to follow procedure means your rights were violated. If your rights were violated, the case should be dismissed.DRUNK DRIVING CHARGE DISMISSED Client was charged with OWI. After an exhaustive review of the arrest video, there was legitimate dispute as to whether or not the officer has probable cause to claim the client failed the sobriety test. The fact that he failed the PBT was of no consequence because without proof he failed the sobriety tests no PBT should have been required. Great respect is due the prosecutor because he did what was fair and accepted our position that the client’s rights might have been violated and he dismissed the OWI charge. It is important to thoroughly review the evidence to find any flaws with the arrest procedure. We seek to dismiss charges to preserve the integrity of our constitution. This is not to say we do not respect the job of law enforcement. To preserve our justice system no person should be held to answer criminal charges if their constitutional rights are compromised.Q: WHAT WILL WE DO FOR OUR CLIENT?A: Everything within our power, ability, and legal authority to protect your constitutional rights.Q: WHY DO WE DO WHAT WE DO?A: You are presumed innocent until proven guilty. The question should not be whether or not you did what was alleged. The second this becomes the question is the second our constitutional rights begin to erode. We should not be upset if a guilty person is not convicted if the prosecutor fails to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Our judicial standards are second to none. We must preserve the integrity of our constitution to ensure we are all treated equally. To do anything less is injustice.You must know your rights. At the Gani Law Firm we have represented boaters, drivers, and hunters in a wide variety of criminal and civil matters. The Gani Law Firm is located at 1005 S. Washington Avenue in Lansing, Michigan. Please call Sal Gani at 517-372-8944 if you have any questions. Disclaimer: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters, and electronic mail. Reviewing this information or contacting us alone does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. You should not rely upon any information as legal advice. #lansinglawyer #lansingattorney #owi #drunkdriving #ganilawfirm #trafficstop
By lawofficeo89441385 04 Jan, 2017
By: G. Sal Gani of the GANI LAW FIRM Has someone victimized you with a keyboard? Have you told someone to stop emailing or texting you because their communications have become threatening? Do you fear for your safety because of what another person has posted about you or your family? Are you a victim of cyberbullying? You do not have to remain a victim. If you ever feel you are in danger of immediate harm call 911. People suffer 24/7 in many ways including but not limited to having to quit their job, quit school, avoid friends and family and suffer from non-stop emotional distress because they feel there is nothing that can be done. People may become guilty of a crime, or become civilly responsible for monetary damages, simply be hitting the “send” button on an unwelcomed, threatening or intimidating text or other electronic communication. It can be considered a crime to send two or more separate electronic communications that constitutes harassment, stalking or unconsented contact. Depending on the nature of the contacts, the penalty can range from a misdemeanor to a felony and subject a defendant to substantial monetary fines and damages. Take a look at MCL 750.411(h) if you wish to read the statute.WHAT CAN YOU DO? If someone is harassing you by repeated electronic messaging, statements, electronic photographs, or any other offensive attempts to communicate with you there is something you can do to start to help yourself. Send that person a communication telling them you don’t want to receive any communication in any form from them, or from anyone acting on their behalf. Tell them you want no communication and you feel threatened, intimidated or frightened by their past communication(s). Be sure to keep a hard copy and electronic copy of all communication, as well as a copy of your demand they stop communicating. If communication attempts continue, I suggest you file a complaint with local law enforcement or seek legal advice. Document all aspects of any damages you suffer including emotional distress, loss of sleep, interference with work and all other injury you sustain. Remember the 5 p’s: Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance.CAN I MAKE IT STOP? Yes. If you are a victim as defined by statute, and another person has improperly threatened, intimidated, harassed, or wrongfully communicated with you, you should take whatever reasonable legal action permitted by law. You might also consider obtaining a Temporary Restraining Order for immediate relief. There are ways to discover who might be doing this to you if you don’t already know. There are laws in place to help. At Gani Law, we have successfully sued people to make them stop. You are not alone. If you have any questions please contact attorney G. Sal Gani at (517) 372-8944 or visit our new web site at Gani Law .com. We are located in the Lansing area and handle matters throughout the State of Michigan. Freedom of speech does not give another person the right to violate your rights. You are entitled to be free from being a victim.The law provides you a means to take back control. The old saying “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never harm me” is no long the standard by which we determine if a person is a victim. It is helpful to have a knowledgeable attorney guiding you through your trouble. Every case is different and you deserve to be given an honest opinion as to how an attorney can help you. We keep your matters confidential.By: G. Sal GaniG. Sal Gani P.C.(517) 372-8944Posted February 1, 2014Disclaimer: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters, and electronic mail. You may call Sal at (517) 372-8944. Reviewing this information or contacting us alone does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. You should not rely upon any information as legal advice.
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