What Courts Do We Serve? Glad You Asked.

One of the questions I hear most often is, “Do you guys do cases in my court?” or rephrased, “Where do you practice law?”

Keep in mind that our attorneys are licensed by the California Bar to practice in the State of California. People call us from all over California and we work on cases that are dozens of miles from our office or just a few blocks away. We are willing to give a free initial consultation no matter which California court your case is in.

When we decide to take a case, it is not merely based on geography. However there are some courts where we handle cases more frequently than others. Law Office of James Dunn is proud to serve criminal defense clients needing a Bay Area Lawyer or a Northern California Lawyer however you may define that.  We can be selective about the cases we take, so our main focus is our ability to make an impact on a particular case depending on the facts. James Dunn and I proudly call ourselves “Bay Area Attorney” or “Northern California Attorney”. It is true that the majority of our work makes us a Silicon Valley Criminal Defense Attorney or a San Mateo County Lawyer or a Santa Clara County Lawyer. We have represented those needing a DUI lawyer, domestic violence lawyer, sexual assault lawyer, theft lawyer, fraud lawyer, embezzlement lawyer and child pornography lawyer. James Dunn has over 20 years of experience with over 2000 criminal cases and has done over 150 jury trials, therefore, if you have an issue and you don’t know what category it falls under, just call us and we can discuss it.  We will provide you with a confidential consultation.

What Types of Cases Do You Not Handle?

We tend to not handle wills/trusts, personal injury, bankruptcy, or commercial law / corporate law whatsoever; however, we often know someone who we can refer to. We do tend to have more referral sources for these categories: immigration lawyer, family lawyer or divorce lawyer. Our goal is to listen to anyone calling our firm, even if they are not strictly calling about a criminal defense matter, and to try to steer you in the right direction.

Although our core geography makes us Silicon Valley Lawyers, having our main offices in San Mateo County and Santa Clara County, we have additionally defended people against charges in San Francisco County, Alameda County, Contra Costa County, as well as periodically assisting defendants in San Benito County, Santa Cruz County, Monterey County, and Solano County. And even have attorneys who can defend in Sacramento, El Dorado and Placer

With great frequency, we appear in the following Superior Courts: South San Francisco, Redwood City, Palo Alto, San Jose, Morgan Hill, Dublin, Oakland (Wiley W. Manuel Courthouse and Rene C. Davidson Courthouse, Fremont, San Francisco, Hollister, Santa Cruz.  This is a partial list of courts we defend cases in.

I may have missed a few places we have helped someone resolve a case and move on with their lives. Whatever your situation, if you are in California, I hope that you call our firm so we can try to help you. I will personally answer the phone and help if I can.

Sincerely, Robert Preskill

Mom Did It Again: Objectives and Challenges in Helping the Elderly in a Criminal Matter

As Bay Area / Silicon Valley Criminal Defense Attorneys, we sometimes get calls from family members who are trying to help an elderly parent through a criminal case.

Types of Criminal Case in Which an Elderly Person is Involved

This could be a theft-related matter, a violation of a protective order or an abuse of process. Sometimes it is an illegal possession case: a gun, drugs, open container, even illegal pornography. Well, it’s like people say, sometimes judgment is hazy or people get bored or frustrated, and little ruts become big liabilities.

When a parent is in trouble, we have seen situations where the son or daughter’s words have gotten them there—possibly in an effort to protect them from self-harm. At times, there is a pattern of manipulation. It is not exactly our role to judge if these were misunderstandings or gross negligence, or truths. However, if a comment is abuse of process, we could argue that it was intentional, and that could be a defense.

Often other factors play a role in a parent’s violation of laws: malaise, a temper caused by understandable frustration, helplessness, psychological causes, valid arguments or concerns about money or healthcare.

Our role in these cases is to use total compassion and to render help no matter what the situation.
-James Dunn

Solutions to Avoid Jail

While we may only discuss the case with the defendant, barring a power of attorney or explicit waiver by the defendant, we can try to convey timing issues and basics so long as there is no conflict. We help families get back on track– jail is no place for a senior.

We’ve found challenges in getting proper medications into the jails, and other medical and psychological needs might not be met. If this is the case, we can argue that home monitoring and alcohol monitoring is a better option.

Where a small amount of jail time is proscribed, the Sherriff’s Work Program (“SWaP”) would be appropriate. But what if mom or dad are not physically suited for picking up trash at the roadside? There are substitutes we could suggest to a judge.

Of course, most cases to not result in jail time at all, however I point these items out for those who wonder how a parent could make it through the process. Be assured your attorney and the legal community will help them in any way we can.

Murder Charges Filed Against Albuquerque Police Officers

The final months of 2014 saw numerous headlines from across the United States featuring instances of law enforcement not being held accountable for acting beyond their responsibilities or legal duities. As a result, countless thousands of people have taken to the streets in mass protests, citing rampant police brutality and civil rights violations as the reasons. With so many examples of police getting away—literally—with murder, it is encouraging to hear that two New Mexico police officers will be facing charges for the shooting death of a homeless camper. Continue reading “Murder Charges Filed Against Albuquerque Police Officers”

Prosecutors Don’t Always Play Fair

The New Orleans Police Department has a bad reputation in Louisiana and indeed throughout the nation. Widely considered to be among the most corrupt police departments in the United States, the NOPD has a history dating back two centuries, during which time there have been countless complaints of abuse and corruption on the part of officers serving on the force. Perhaps the most famous example of this is the Danziger Bridge shootings, which occurred in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Continue reading “Prosecutors Don’t Always Play Fair”