Tag Archives: investigation

Mississippi Criminal Defense Lawyer: Aggravated Assault Charges Dismissed

We are pleased to announce that aggravated assault charges have been dismissed against one of our clients.  The charges were pending in Madison County, Mississippi.

Our client, DV, was charged with aggravated assault in Madison County, which occurred in Ridgeland, Mississippi.  She was accused of stabbing the alleged victim.  DV hired me as her lawyer immediately after she was arrested.

Bond was initially set so high that DV could not get out of jail.  The first order of business was to get a bond reduction.  Within one (1) week of hiring me, I got her bond reduced by 80%, and she bonded out of jail and went home to her family.

As soon as DV made bail, we went to work on the defense investigation of the case.  DV said she acted in self-defense.  We located a witness who saw everything that happened.  This witness was never interviewed by the police.  We convinced the witness to give us a recorded statement.  The statement backed up DV’s claim of self-defense.

As a lawyer who handles aggravated assault cases in Mississippi, I knew that self-defense would be a defense to this charge, so we next began to look into the character and background of the victim.  Our investigation revealed that the victim had criminal convictions for false pretenses in Hinds County, and was currently on probation.  We also discovered that the victim had an active warrant for her arrest.  This information was very relevant to the victim’s credibility as a witness.  This information was disclosed to the prosecutor as required by Mississippi criminal discovery rules.

Trial was set to begin on Tuesday of last week.  The day before trial, the prosecutor notified me that the State had agreed to dismiss the aggravated assault charges against DV.  This was certainly the best result possible, and the prosecutor should be commended for disposing of this case prior to trial.  

As a criminal defense attorney, the most rewarding part of my job is to call a client and tell them that criminal charges have been dismissed.  It was even more rewarding in this case because there was never a doubt in my mind that the client was innocent of these charges.  I also had no doubt that the “victim” would have killed the client had she not defended herself.  It was a clear case of self-defense under Mississippi aggravated assault law, and it was our privilege to protect DV and keep her out of prison.  And now that the charges have been dismissed, we can even get the charge expunged from her record.

This aggravated assault case shows some things you need to know if you are charged with assault in Mississippi:

(1) Just because you get arrested, charged or indicted for assault, it does not always mean you will be convicted;

(2) If you get charged with assault in Mississippi and think it was self-defense, it probably was;

(3) If you are charged with assault in Mississippi you need a criminal lawyer who handles assault cases–and has the knowledge and experience to protect your rights and keep you out of prison;

(4) If you get charged with assault in Mississippi, you need a lawyer who knows how to investigate and prepare assault cases before trial.  Do not assume that the police have interviewed all the witnesses or found all the facts and evidence in your case.  This is the job of a criminal defense lawyer, and can be the difference between going home, or going to prison.

I’m a Mississippi criminal defense lawyer who handles assault cases.  If you have been charged with assault in Mississippi, please contact me at 601.944.1984 to discuss your case.  While I can’t guarantee the same result we got for DV, you can rest assured that we will do everything under the sun, leaving no rock unturned, to get your assault charges dismissed.

Curt Crowley is a Mississippi criminal defense lawyer and is based in Jackson, Mississippi.  He handles assault and other criminal cases in Madison County, Ridgeland, Canton, Madison, Flora and throughout the State of Mississippi.


Mississippi Criminal Defense Lawyer Explains The Crime of Embezzlement

Crime rates as a whole generally increase in tough economic times.  Financial crimes, especially embezzlement, tend to have sharp increases. 

Mississippi has experienced an increase in embezzlement cases.  Laurel Leader Call reporter Eloria Newell James writes:

LAUREL — From taking merchandise for personal use to removing cash from a business’ cash register, law enforcement officials say embezzlement is on the rise.

The Laurel Police Department’s Investigative Division has reported an increase in embezzlement cases in recent weeks.

The department has reported several recent cases involving the theft of businesses’ money.

Sgt. Michael Reaves with the Laurel Police said while law enforcement officials have seen “a decrease in a lot of crimes in our areas” the number of cases involving money has increased.

“In the last six months, we’ve seen a lot of our financial crimes spike,” Reaves said. “Economic crimes, crimes dealing with money, have increased.”

In May, a Laurel woman was arrested and charged in an ongoing embezzlement case in Ellisville. Kathy Hilbun, 48, who once worked at the BP Convenience Store in Ellisville, was arrested and charged with one count of felony embezzlement after store officials reported on May 25 possible embezzlement.

Then in July, Sara Rose Dearman, 20, of Laurel was arrested in connection with embezzling money from the eatery where she worked.

Stephanie Thornton, 40, of Laurel, former business manager of the Laurel Leader-Call, was arrested Sept. 17 and charged with embezzling from the newspaper.

In late September, Quonesha Walters, 18, of Laurel, a former employee of Murphy Oil on 16th Avenue, was arrested by police and charged with two counts of embezzlement.

“We’ve seen several economic crimes lately,” Reaves said. “They have ranged from embezzlement, credit card fraud, identity theft and a little increase in counterfeit checks.”

“Some of the suspects (in the recent cases) have not been your typical suspects,” Reaves acknowledged. “Most of them have been women – blue collar workers, middle class people. They have been normal working people that seem to have allowed circumstances to put added stress on them and result in them doing something that they would not normally do.

“These are people with jobs and families,” Reaves added. “We’ve seen stolen (credit card) numbers, others they have obtained (credit) cards in other people’s names…. These are people who are getting money and/or goods by illegal gain.”

“We realize the economy is tough, but people should realize that embezzlement is a serious crime,” the police sergeant said.

While there are several types of embezzlement, this crime usually involves employees stealing money or goods from their employers.  Under Mississippi law,

If any person shall embezzle…or convert to his own use…any…property of any kind…which shall have…been entrusted to his care or possession by virtue of his…employment…with a value of [$500.00] or more, he shall be guilty of felony embezzlement, and, upon conviction…shall be imprisoned…not more than ten (10) years, or fined not more than [$25,000.00], or both.

If the value of such…property…is less than [$500.00], he shall be guilty of misdemeanor embezzlement, and, upon conviction…shall be imprisoned…not more than six (6) months, or fined not more than [$1,000.00], or both.

See Mississippi Code Annotated Section 97-23-19.

I handle cases involving white-collar and financial crimes, including embezzlement.  Even though embezzlement of a rather small amount of cash or property carries stiff penalties, there are defenses available to such a charge.  A thorough defense investigation is almost always required to defend against an embezzlement charge.  I’ve often said defense attorneys win (or lose) cases based upon how well they perform the defense investigation at the inception of the case.  There is no better example of this principle than embezzlement cases. 

If you have been charged with embezzlement, or think you might be under suspicion or investigation for a white-collar or other financial crime, please contact me immediately to protect your rights.

Mississippi Criminal Defense Attorney Curt Crowley