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Blog Posts in 2014

  • A Lawsuit Up in Smoke?

    || 30-Dec-2014

    About States of Nebraska and Oklahoma v. State of Colorado As you are probably aware, the State of Colorado legalized (to a certain extent) the recreational use of marijuana, and the associated marijuana industry. Legalization occurred through an amendment (Amendment 64) to the Colorado Constitution, which voters approved in November, 2012. The first stores selling recreational use marijuana ...
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  • Should I hire a criminal defense attorney now or wait?

    || 23-Dec-2014

    This is a question frequently asked by clients when looking to hire a criminal defense lawyer for a relative, friend or themself. In my experience, the sooner an attorney from the Berry Law Firm can enter an appearance in a criminal case, the more likely the results are going to be favorable for somebody charged with a serious felony. Because attorneys from our office have represented clients from ...
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  • Reasonable Expectation of Privacy

    || 16-Dec-2014

    The warrant requirement of the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution is still alive in the State of Nebraska. In a December, 2014 Nebraska Supreme Court decision, the Court made it clear that the state must follow Federal Court rulings noting that the warrantless search exceptions recognized in the State of Nebraska do not include "probable cause" searches. While cars and ...
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  • Statute of Frauds and Partial Performance

    || 11-Dec-2014

    As a general rule, the Statute of Frauds allows a party to avoid oral agreement for the sale of real estate, the costs of goods over $500, a marriage contract, the guarantee of another's debt, or contracts that cannot be completed within one year; however, where there is partial performance, an oral contract may become enforceable. What if an oral contract is both for over one year and for ...
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  • Ferguson, Eric Garner, and Grand Juries in Nebraska

    || 8-Dec-2014

    With recent events in Ferguson, MO and with Eric Garner in Staten Island, NY, the term "grand jury" has become a much-discussed topic. There has been confusion as to the composition and purpose of a grand jury. Before getting to the topic of grand juries, however, it is important to give a brief overview of how felonies progress through the Nebraska state court system. Felonies in ...
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  • The Under the Legal Limit DUI Arrest

    || 4-Dec-2014

    While state DUI laws vary, most states prohibit driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) is greater than.08 grams of alcohol per deciliter of your blood, OR while under the influence of any drug, or alcohol. Many people operate a vehicle relatively soon after drinking (like after last call when the bar closes) and do not have a BAC greater that.08, and are not under the influence of alcohol. A ...
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  • Excellence in the Courtroom

    || 26-Nov-2014

    Athletes and soldiers achieve excellence through training. In sports, practice is crucial. In the military, battle drills and rehearsals are used to prepare for combat. Any endeavor in which excellence is expected, that requires constant training. This is no different for lawyers. While most states have continuing legal education requirements that mandate attorneys to participate in a minimal ...
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  • Should I Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney Now or Wait?

    || 24-Nov-2014

    This is a question frequently asked by clients when looking to hire a criminal defense lawyer for a relative, friend or themself. In my experience, the sooner an attorney from the Berry Law Firm can enter an appearance in a criminal case, the more likely the results are going to be favorable for somebody charged with a serious felony. Because attorneys from our office have represented clients from ...
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  • Nebraska Forfeiture Cases on the Rise

    || 19-Nov-2014

    Years ago, I heard a State Trooper testify that on Interstate 80 drugs travel East and money travels West. Back then, most interstate drug stops involved drugs such as marijuana, methamphetamine, cocaine, and heroin destined for cities such as Chicago, Minneapolis, New York, or Washington DC. While we are still regularly contacted by individuals stopped and arrested for possession with intent to ...
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  • Lincoln teens may be enjoying their freedom of youth with a little too much partying; this is a worry that has some locals fearing for the state of their forests and homes. A leading concern among citizens in this dry weather is the potential for bonfire parties to cause huge forest fires, which can eventually lead to criminal defense being necessary because of excessive damage. Police are ...
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  • In the recent case in State vs. Lavalleur, the Nebraska Supreme Court found that the defendant was denied his constitutional right to confront the alleged victim when the court prevented him from asking the victim about a relationship in which she was involved when she made the rape allegation. In Lavalleur, the defendant sought to present evidence that the alleged victim was in a sexual ...
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  • Sex and the Workplace

    || 26-Sep-2014

    Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination in the terms, conditions, or privileges of employment based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin by employers with 15 or more employees, states and political subdivisions, and educational entities. When “sex” was added by amendment to the legislation on the floor of the House of Representatives, it was done ...
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  • Complicated Computer Crimes

    || 27-Aug-2014

    Law enforcement has improved crime fighting technology vastly over the past few years. The internet is often used to commit crimes such as internet sex crimes, identity theft, and terroristic threats. Some citizens concerned with the government’s confirmed spying through sources such Edward Snowden, Wikileaks and have taken steps to attempt to communicate in private. Some internet users ...
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  • Federal Drug Sentences May Be Reduced

    || 12-Aug-2014

    If you or a loved one has been found guilty in Federal court and incarcerated as a result of an interstate drug stop, drug conspiracy, distribution of a controlled substance, or other Federal drug charge, good news may be coming soon. In April of this year, the United States Sentencing Commission proposed Amendment 782, which reduces by two levels the offense levels assigned to drug quantities ...
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  • In April 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Missouri v. McNeely holding that the natural dissolution of alcohol in one’s bloodstream does not necessarily justify a nonconsensual blood draw absent a search warrant. The defendant in McNeely was stopped for speeding and crossing the centerline. During the stop, officers became suspicious that McNeely was intoxicated and asked him to submit to ...
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