Criminal Charges

Today the paper had more senseless violence that will end up as criminal cases going through the legal system. In one case a woman was charged as an accessory after the fact in her ex-husband’s shooting. In the other case two men were killed during a robbery. I sometimes wonder if people would hesitate before they committed a crime if they knew the punishment. That is one of the big questions in the field of corrections. If punishment does not deter crime, then it serves only as punishment. Should there be a rehabilitative side of the prison system?

Shooting someone with a deadly weapon is usually charged as Aggravated Assault. Aggravated Assault carries a maximum imprisonment in the State Prison of Twenty (20) years. If a person is injured, you can generally expect the prison time to be near the maximum. If the crime is not completed or the person not seriously hurt, then the accused may not get a lengthy prison term, but he will definitely receive five (5) years probation or post release supervision.

Capital Murder is the is the highest crime you can commit in Mississippi. The maximum punishment that the jury can give is death. If the jury does not give death, they can give a sentence of life in prison without any chance of release. The men that robbed the hair salon will face Capital Murder charges. I just wonder if it is worth it? Is obtaining money, or getting revenge worth spending the remainder of your life in prison, or the death penalty. For over 29 years I have defended people charged with every type of crime. I have handled approximately 18 death penalty cases. I have had murder, robbery, strong armed robber, rape, fondling, sexual battery, pornography, false pretenses, controlled substances/drugs,bad check, embezzlement, welfare fraud, medicaid and medicare fraud, gambling, prostitution, scams, cons, and many of crimes. I have defended them all, in State and Federal Court. I have never gotten a satisfactory answer to my question: Does anyone think about the consequences of these violent crimes.

I have sympathy and empathy for people and the mistakes they make. I understand that good people make bad choices sometimes, and make mistakes. I don’t have any problem helping someone charged with a crime. This is no more difficult for me than it is for the prosecutor who advocates for a conviction when he is not certain if the individual committed the crime. Our system of justice leaves it to the jury. Yet, when I look at some of the deliberate, violent crimes I just wonder why?

Merrida Coxwell is a 29 year veteran of hundreds of criminal cases. He is managing partner of Coxwell & Associates, a firm that focuses on criminal law, serious injury, and financial fraud. One member of the firm, Frank Coxwell, practices in a completely different area. Frank handles consumer bankruptcy and consumer issues. For a free consultation call the lawyers at 601-948-1600 or send an e mail.

Disclaimer: This blog is intended as general information purposes only, and is not a substitute for legal advice. Anyone with a legal problem should consult a lawyer immediately.

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