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Greenville South Carolina Criminal Defense Blog

Prisoners exonerated in 2018 spent 1,639 years behind bars

South Carolina residents have likely read media stories about prisoners who were exonerated after spending years behind bars when witnesses recanted or DNA evidence proved their innocence. The National Registry of Exonerations keeps track of these cases, and its latest annual report reveals that the 151 prisoners exonerated in 2018 were incarcerated for a total of 1,639 years. This works out to about 11 years behind bars per exonerated prisoner and is the highest number observed since the organization began tracking this data in 1989.

The research group's report also reveals that official misconduct is worryingly common in these cases. Of the 151 prisoners exonerated, 107 were sent to prison largely due to misconduct by police, prosecutors, or other officials. Misconduct is even more common in homicide cases according to the University of Michigan Law School-based group. The misconduct figures were especially high in 2018 because a scandal involving corrupt Chicago police officers led to the exoneration of 31 prisoners.

What should young people know about swatting?

Anyone can make a mistake that results in criminal charges, but younger people are especially vulnerable to participating in actions they do not realize can have serious consequences, especially if their peers influence them. South Carolina residents who spend time gaming or in online discussions should understand the potential ramifications of a not-so-harmless prank called swatting.

Swatting is a retaliatory prank that is common among people who play online games and get into debates on the internet. According to authorities, the prank gets its name from the likelihood of armed law enforcement or SWAT team members arriving at the target’s home. A swatting prank usually proceeds as follows:

  • An online argument ensues.
  • The “swatter” gives police a false report, usually claiming to be the swatting target and admitting to committing a violent crime in the home.
  • Law enforcement shows up at the unwitting target’s residence, often demanding entry and searching for weapons and signs of criminal activity.

When texting while driving leads to involuntary manslaughter

Texting while driving is an ongoing problem in every state, including South Carolina.

If you are texting and cause an accident that results in the death of another person, law enforcement can charge you with involuntary manslaughter. What exactly does this mean?

Man charged with murder of college student

A 24-year-old man was charged with the death of a 21-year-old college student in South Carolina. The woman was reportedly at the Bird Dog bar on the night of March 29 when she hailed a ride from Uber after getting separated from her friends. When a black Chevy Impala arrived, the woman got into the vehicle thinking it was her ride.

Authorities say that the woman's body was disposed of in a wooded area. The body was found in a rural area by hunters, and it was said to be in a spot that would have been difficult to access without knowledge of the area.

Pink-collar crime – yes, it is a thing

The term “pink-collar crime” is familiar to fans of the hit CBS show of the same name, but a trendy title does not lessen the importance of an area of criminal law that is normally put in the same category as other white-collar crimes. However, you and other South Carolina residents may find the differences between white-collar crime and its sensationalized counterpart interesting.

Gender is the main differing factor separating white-collar crime from pink-collar crime, according to Forbes. While the alleged criminal activities – money laundering, embezzlement and fraud – are similar, the motives behind the activities, the emotional impact felt by the accused and even the repercussions after they serve time tend to be vastly different. For example, men may get involved in embezzlement, Ponzi schemes and similar activities for the status, the sense of power and even the thrill of it.

Charges against South Carolina teens upgraded to murder

The death of a 73-year-old woman four days after two young men allegedly broke into her home and shot her has prompted authorities in Seneca to upgrade charges against the men to murder. She succumbed to her injuries at Greenville hospital. The two suspects, ages 19 and 17, had originally been charged with first-degree burglary and attempted murder.

A news release from the Oconee County coroner indicated that the woman who lived on Maple Avenue had suffered multiple gunshot wounds. Police reportedly recovered shell casings inside her home.

What is tax evasion?

Now that tax season is here, it is vital for you to understand the law as a taxpayer. If you intentionally underpay the IRS or fail to disclose your taxable assets, you may face an investigation for tax evasion. But what about mere mistakes or carelessness? Everyone can make errors on their taxes, right?

Generally speaking, a mistake without any intentional wrongdoing is not considered tax fraud by the IRS. But it is still possible for the IRS to investigate and potentially bring charges against you if you make significant errors regarding your taxes. 

Teen girl charged with attempted murder of another teen

A high school in South Carolina was the scene of a violent fight that resulted in one teenage girl being stabbed by another, according to police. A 15-year-old female student was charged with the stabbing of a 17-year-old female student after police were called to the Richland County high school on Feb. 25 around noon.

When police arrived at the school courtyard, an adult was giving first aid to the 17-year-old student by applying pressure to her stab wound with a belt. Police searched the younger girl for a weapon, but she told them she had thrown her knife away earlier. She admitted that she regularly carries the knife to school. She also admitted that she did stab the older girl. Police later found the knife.

SEC accuses former Apple lawyer with insider trading

Apple Inc. reaps large profits selling phones and computers to consumers in South Carolina and worldwide. Even so, major corporations experience ups and downs in their stock prices, and a lawyer formerly employed by Apple now stands accused of allegedly selling company stock before earnings announcements that influenced the stock's price. The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed a lawsuit claiming that the man engaged in insider trading, and a U.S. attorney has prepared criminal charges against him. He lost his position at Apple in September 2018.

During his employment by the technology giant, he managed the company's SEC filings and financial reporting. He also oversaw aspects of the company's corporate subsidiary structure. Apple has policies to deter insider trading, which include prohibitions on trading company stock during certain blackout periods. No accusations of wrongdoing have been made against Apple, and the company has not commented on the case.

An embezzlement conviction may plague you for years

Embezzlement is a serious offense that could land you in immediate trouble. That is, if you are facing an embezzlement charge, you may have to do some time in prison. A judge may also order you to pay restitution and fines. 

Unfortunately, you may not be able to leave your embezzlement conviction behind. On the contrary, your criminal record may plague you for the rest of your life. Therefore, it is important that you advocate aggressively for your best interests. If a judge or jury convicts you of embezzlement, though, you may have four long-term consequences. 

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William G. Yarborough Attorney at Law
522 N. Church St.
Greenville, SC 29601

Toll Free: 800-469-3658
Phone: 864-326-3026
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William G. Yarborough Attorney at Law