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Double jeopardy and where it applies

On Behalf of | Jan 9, 2020 | Firm News |

Individuals who are charged with a crime in Oregon may be afforded double jeopardy protections. This generally means that an individual cannot be tried or convicted for the same crime more than once. The Supreme Court has ruled that double jeopardy protection at the state level must equal the rights granted by the federal government. In the past, protections against double jeopardy offered by some states were weaker than those guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment.

It is important to note that a person may still face a civil lawsuit before or after his or her criminal case has been resolved. This is because civil proceedings are considered to be remedial in nature and are intended to compensate victims for financial losses incurred. Criminal proceeding are considered to be punitive in nature and hold individuals responsible for negligent or reckless behavior. Individuals may also be subject to administrative penalties in a case in addition to criminal or civil penalties that may be handed down.

Administrative actions could include suspending or revoking a person’s drivers license in a DUI case. The O.J. Simpson murder trial was an example of a case in which the defendant was subject to both criminal and civil penalties. Although he was acquitted of the criminal charges against him, Simpson was ordered to pay restitution to the families of his victims.

Those who are facing criminal charges may want to hire a criminal defense attorney to help with their cases. An attorney may be able to help an defendant obtain a favorable outcome in a case by having evidence suppressed or by claiming that the defendant’s constitutional rights were violated. This may be enough to have a case dismissed, a charge dropped or to convince a jury to acquit.