If you’ve been charged with a violent crime in Idaho Falls or surrounding areas, you usually are anxious and concerned for your future. This is not a time when you should attempt to handle the situation on your own. Having a highly skilled Idaho violent crimes attorney from the Cutler Law Office, P.A. to assist you with your charges can give you some peace of mind, knowing you have an experienced legal professional on your side.
Violent crimes include murder, manslaughter, arson, burglary, robbery, kidnapping, and assault, and typically include the use of force or the threat of force against another person. The most serious violent crime is murder, which is killing another human being. Murder can be intentional or unintentional. The law establishes varying degrees of penalties for the crime of murder depending on intent and certain other factors.
Facts and Statistics Regarding Violent Crimes
According to World Population Review, the top ten states with the most violent crimes include Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina. While not ranking in the top ten states for the most violent crimes, when adjusted for population, Idaho’s firearm death rate was 17.6 for every 100,000, ranking 16th highest among all the states. While the U.S. murder rate is at its highest level in nearly two and a half decades, with 21,570 murders committed across the nation in 2020, Idaho had a fairly low murder rate in 2020, with 41 murders, or 2.2 for every 100,000 people (the fourth-lowest murder rate among all the states, with the national homicide rate at 6.5 per 100,000 people).
Why Choose a Violent Crimes Attorney in Idaho Falls from the Cutler Law Office, P.A.?
At the Cutler Law Office, P.A., we strongly believe that our clients deserve the best possible representation that we can provide. We understand that people sometimes make mistakes, but when a mistake has led to serious criminal charges, you can rest assured that we can be your trusted advocate during this difficult time. Idaho Falls criminal defense attorney, John Cutler, is licensed in all state and federal courts in Idaho and can draw from more than 30 years of criminal law experience to defend you after a violent crime arrest.
Attorney John Cutler begins every case with the idea that it may go to trial, and therefore, will need motions filed. This mindset allows him to review the discovery, making a full analysis of the likelihood of prevailing at trial. When your violent crimes attorney is fully prepared for trial, negotiations with the prosecutor are likely to have a much more positive outcome. John also understands the need to present each client in as positive a manner as possible, particularly during sentencing hearings.
If you want a violent crimes lawyer who will always do criminal defense right, fully digging into the discovery and facts of each case, you need attorney John Cutler. John listens to each client, researching and investigating the case, then developing a plan of action that will yield the best outcome possible.
John Cutler is passionate about ensuring each and every client receives vigorous and thorough legal representation, protecting them from government overreach and violations of their Constitutional rights. If you choose the Cutler Law Office, P.A., attorney John Cutler will tell your story in court in a way that allows the prosecutor, judge, and jurors to more fully understand—and then to provide true justice.
What Does a Violent Crimes Attorney Do—And Why Do You Need One?
If you have been charged with a violent crime in Idaho, you should know that the prosecutor believes you are guilty and even though he has the burden of proof and a desire to bring justice for the state, he wants to win. Since state prosecutors tend to have significant resources, they can in most instances present a case against you that has everything necessary to receive a guilty verdict. You need an experienced criminal defense attorney who puts forth the same level of investigation, research and evidence collection and review as the state.
If you have already been charged with a crime, then hiring an attorney as quickly as possible will put you in the best position possible for a positive outcome. While representing yourself on any legal matter is rarely a good idea, if you’ve been charged with a violent crime, you absolutely need an experienced, highly skilled criminal defense attorney. Your defense attorney will do the following:
- Argue at your bail or bond hearing for your release, negotiating the most favorable bail amount
- Make sure all the evidence the state has is properly turned over
- Aggressively seek any additional evidence that might potentially show your innocence, or at the least, result in a more lenient sentence
- Find any weakness in the evidence or other problems in the prosecution’s case against you
- File motions as needed, including motions to suppress any evidence which was not lawfully obtained
- Work on a plea agreement that can minimize the potential consequences of your charges or your sentence
- Advocate aggressively for you in the courtroom if your case goes to trial
- Argue for the most lenient penalties at sentencing
Having an attorney who has a deep understanding of Idaho law and the charges against you allows you to know what’s happening during every step of the judicial process. Your lawyer will know what evidence will help you and what evidence will hurt you and will try to have any harmful evidence suppressed if possible. After being charged with a criminal offense, you will be faced with many critical decisions. If you make the right decision when choosing your violent crimes lawyer, the remaining decisions will be much easier.
What Are the Potential Penalties for Violent Crimes in Idaho?
- Assault and Battery—These charges generally arise from a physical altercation. Your penalties may vary, based on the severity of the injuries received by the alleged victim. Assault is the crime of threatening or attempting to injure another person, however, the threat must be imminent. Assault is a misdemeanor in Idaho, punishable by up to three months in jail, and a $1,000 fine. Battery requires actual physical unlawful touching, striking, or causing harm to another person. Battery is also a misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail, and a $1,000 fine. If the assault involves a deadly weapon or some means to produce great bodily harm, then it is classified as aggravated assault, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines. Aggravated battery is the crime of battery committed with a deadly weapon that causes significant bodily harm, permanent disfigurement, or is against a pregnant woman with resulting harm to the child. Aggravated battery is a felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison, and a fine as large as $50,000. Idaho also has a three-strikes law that mandates a minimum sentence for a third-time felony offender of five years in prison minimum, up to a maximum of life in prison.
- Attempted Strangulation—The state of Idaho has a specific law for the attempted strangulation of a household member. Attempted strangulation is a felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
- Arson in the first degree occurs when a person willfully and unlawfully through fire or explosion, damages any dwelling, any structure, or any real or personal property. A conviction for arson in the first degree could result in a penalty of up to 25 years in prison and a maximum fine of $100,000. You could also be charged with arson in the second or third degree—lesser charges, depending on the circumstances and whether anyone was injured. Arson in the second degree has a penalty of up to 15 years in prison, while arson in the third degree has a penalty of up to ten years in prison. .
- Manslaughter is divided into three categories—voluntary manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, and vehicular manslaughter. All three categories involve taking the life of another human being, but with no malice and no premeditation. Voluntary manslaughter covers a “heat of passion” death with no intent to kill the victim and is punishable by up to 15 years in prison. Involuntary manslaughter is the unlawful taking of a life as a result of negligent, careless, or reckless actions, and is punishable by up to ten years in prison. Vehicular manslaughter is the unlawful killing of another human being through the operation of a vehicle and can be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony. A misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter can result in up to a year in jail, while a felony vehicular manslaughter is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
- Burglary is punishable by not less than one year in prison and not more than 10 years in prison.
- Kidnapping in the first degree is punishable by life in prison or the death penalty, while all other forms of kidnapping (including child custody interference) are classified as second-degree kidnapping with penalties from 1-25 years in prison.
What Are the Most Common Defenses to Violent Crime Allegations?
As a former deputy prosecuting attorney, John Cutler is particularly familiar with the strategies that a prosecutor may try to use against you. We also know that the prosecution will have the burden of proving that you acted willfully with violence against someone else and that your intentional actions directly caused a victim immediate harm or bodily injury. Any element of doubt or any manner in which we can discredit the prosecutor’s case can lead to your charges being reduced, or in some cases, your case being completely dismissed.
Common Defense strategies include the following:
- Mistaken identity
- Violation of Miranda rights
- Illegal search and seizure
- Act of self-defense, defense of others, or defense of property
- Motion to suppress evidence due to a violation of your constitutional rights
- Insufficient evidence that you acted in violence against someone else intentionally
We have successfully handled violent crime charges in Idaho. No matter how daunting your case may seem, our firm is not afraid to make certain that your side of the story is heard in a court of law.
Navigate the Criminal Justice System with the Guidance of a Skilled Violent Crimes Attorney
From violent crimes involving domestic violence, assault, and battery charges to vehicular manslaughter stemming from driving under the influence or boating under the influence accidents, our firm stands ready to defend you. After serious criminal allegations have been brought against you, and it seems as though the criminal justice system has left you feeling isolated and alone, you can rest easy at night knowing you have an experienced, knowledgeable, and devoted advocate in your corner.
If you have been charged with a violent crime in Idaho Falls (Bonneville County), Blackfoot (Bingham County), Rigby (Jefferson County), St. Anthony (Fremont County), Rexburg (Madison County), Driggs (Teton County), Arco (Butte County), Victor (Teton County), or Island Park (Fremont County), contact Cutler Law Office, P.A. today for superior legal representation. Attorney John Cutler practices primarily in the 7th Judicial District of Idaho and is ready to speak to you today. Contact Cutler Law Office, P.A. today.