Latest from Boston Criminal Attorney Blog

In Part One of my most recent post on this subject, I outlined a recent effort in the Massachusetts Legislature to decriminalize and eventually legalize for sale psychedelic drugs.  While a good number of people might be shocked at this idea, it’s not so far-fetched.  Psychedelic drugs, also called entheogenic drugs, have been used by human beings for centuries throughout a variety of cultures, and many of these drugs produce positive physical and psychological benefits.…
As pretty much anyone in Massachusetts knows, possession and use of marijuana (cannabis) has been legal here for a few years now.  It made its way to full legalization following initial decriminalization. Decriminalizing is the legislative process of removing criminal sanctions against an act or behavior, while legalizing something removes all legal prohibitions against that act or conduct.  It was a long and winding road to get to that public policy shift: Despite numerous bills to…
Living in Massachusetts can be, during winter, a challenge to say the least.  It’s cold enough here to snow from about early November to early April.  For skiers and winter sports enthusiasts, it’s Heaven.  For me and a lot of people here, it’s more like Hell (freezing over).  The injuries that can be attributed to snow & ice are numerous – and despite what some people might think, the consequences aren’t limited to a scrape…
In Part One of my previous post on this subject, I discussed the Supreme Judicial Court’s recent ruling upholding the validity of a search warrant issued for the defendant’s computer, when the warrant was issued seven months previous to the computer’s seizure.  That case is  Commonwealth vs. Guastucci, SJC-12829, and the defendant was convicted of uploading and possessing child pornography on his computer.  A video of oral arguments before the SJC can be viewed by…
Search warrants have traditionally been the focal point of many an appellate court’s decisions in the area of criminal law.  This area of law is governed by the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and here in Massachusetts by Article 14 of the Massachusetts Declarations of Rights, and is extremely important because it governs when and under what circumstances the government can search and/or seize items in your possession.  This is true whether those…
I’ve written before about how the Obama-era regulations that defined and governed sex offenses under the federal law known as Title IX, were far too weighted against the accused.  “Title IX” prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender at colleges, universities and any educational institutions receiving federal funds.  The law is enforced by the U.S. Department of Education. After an exhaustive review process overseen by US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos that spanned more than…
Here’s an update on how the Massachusetts District Courts are adapting to COVID-19: Q.  Are all of the District Courts open during the COVID-19 crisis? A:  Yes, all District Courts are open to conduct certain designated business and to conduct hearings in certain designated matters. As of July 13, some proceedings will take place in person. Other business is instead being addressed virtually by telephone, videoconference, email or comparable means. These are called “virtual hearings.”…
A friend of mine and I were recently talking about our hope that the economy can be re-opened again – and soon.  One of the things he said to me was, “Yeah – I haven’t been able to hit the open road and hit the gas for a while.”  As a Massachusetts lawyer who represents clients who have been charged with, among other things,  motor vehicle offenses, I’m sure you can imagine what my response…
As I’ve blogged about recently, one very sad and troubling side-effect of the COVID-19 crisis, has been an increase in domestic violence.  As a Massachusetts domestic violence lawyer, I’ve seen this spike correlate with COVID-19.  It comes as no surprise:  People are under enormous psychological and financial pressure.   Kids are stuck at home, doubtless escalating those demands and pressure.  Even without kids to care for, couples feeling the prolonged stress can act it out in…
A lot of consequences of the quarantine measures and stay-at-home orders flowing from the COVID-19 pandemic predictable were predictable:  Economic harm, educational impacts, hoarding at stores, transportation problems, etc.  But as a Massachusetts domestic violence lawyer, I can assure you that an even more disturbing impact awaited in this environment:  Domestic violence.  And it’s not surprising.  The number of phone calls I am getting from clients and potential clients that have been impacted by this…