Can the Judge Waive My Criminal Fines and Fees?

Dealing With High Criminal Court Costs

By Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorney Roger Priest

Criminal Fines and Fees
Criminal Fines and Fees Can Leave You Down and Out

In the recent case of State v. Blazina, the Supreme Court of Washington considered whether legal financial obligations assessed against two criminal defendants were properly imposed. RCW 10.01.160(3) states that courts cannot order defendants to pay criminal court costs unless the defendant is or will be able to pay them. Courts are required to consider a defendant’s financial resources and the burden that payment of costs will impose on a defendant before they can be assessed.

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Can I Change Public Defenders?

jockey changing horses mid race

By: Vancouver WA Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorney Roger Priest

jockey changing horses mid race
can i get a new public defender?

It is not uncommon to get a court-appointed attorney that you either don’t like or have difficulty working with. Many people wonder whether they can get a new public defender if they are not satisfied with their current attorney. Criminal defendants enjoy a right to choose their counsel, but that right is not without some limitations. Much depends on whether your chosen attorney is privately hired or appointed by the court, and there may be other concerns that can limit your right to change your lawyer.

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Reading the Fine Print in Plea Deals – Prosecutor Obligations in Exceptional Sentence Deals – State v. Neiler

prosecutor with tape over her mouth so she cannot go against plea deal

Prosecutor Obligations For Plea Deals With Exceptional Sentences

By: Vancouver WA criminal defense & personal injury attorney Roger Priest

prosecutor with tape over her mouth so she cannot go against plea deal
prosecutor obligations for plea deals with exceptional sentences

When a criminal defendant and a prosecutor reach a plea deal, what can the prosecutor argue at sentencing? Because plea deals are like contracts, they bind the parties to honor the agreement. So, what can a prosecutor say to the judge without violating the terms of the agreement?

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I’ll See you in Court (maybe)! – State v. Thurlby

empty chair with reserved sign - voluntary absence from trial

 

Voluntary Absence From Trial & The Right To Be Present

By: Vancouver WA criminal defense & personal injury attorney Roger Priest 

voluntary absence from trial - criminal defenseWho says ‘The show must go on’? At least in Washington courts, an absent defendant can be tried and convicted.  This week in State v. Thurlby No. 91220-3, the Supreme Court of Washington decided that a defendant in a felony drug case waived her right to be present at her own trial and conviction when she failed to show up for the last day of her trial.

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Search Warrants in Child Pornography Cases

hand typing on a computer keyboard - search warrants child pornography law

By: Vancouver WA Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorney Roger Priest

hand typing on a computer keyboard - search warrants child pornography law
How are search warrants handled in child pornography cases?

Today, In State v. Besola/State v. Swenson, No. 90554-1, the Supreme Court of Washington considered whether a search warrant in a child pornography case was specific enough in what items it instructed the police to seize.  Ultimately, the Court decided that the warrant was unconstitutionally overbroad and ordered that the evidence that it led to was inadmissible at trial.

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