It’s no surprise that certain crimes spike around the holidays. Increased alcohol consumption, as well as financial and emotional stress, sometimes causes people to do things they wouldn’t ordinarily do. One example is drinking too much and then driving, or getting into a fight with a loved one, or shoplifting. Unfortunately, a poor decision now can have an impact long after the holidays are over. Here’s a look at a few common holiday crimes that can turn your “Christmas cheer into holiday tears!”
Driving While Intoxicated
During the holiday season, there is no shortage of celebrations and parties. Police often step-up DUI enforcement during this time of year, putting more officers on the roads to ensure the safety of all drivers. Police will be looking for any reason to stop motorists, like simply having a taillight out or failing to use a turn signal.
A DUI arrest can ruin an otherwise festive evening. It’s important to make a plan to get home safely before the festivities start. Lining up a DD (designated driver), calling a cab, renting a hotel room, or contacting Uber/lyft are all good options for those who plan to drink outside of their homes over the holidays. If you do get pulled over and have been drinking, remember your rights – including your right to remain silent, your right to refuse sobriety tests, breath, blood or urine test requested by the officer.
When people can’t afford to buy their loved ones’ gifts or provide a special holiday meal, they sometimes resort to shoplifting. They may rationalize their actions by thinking taking a toy for their child for Christmas is much different than, say, stealing a shirt for a party. Of course, there are also people who shoplift to fill some sort of emotional void or for the thrill of it. Regardless of the reason, it’s important to remember that retailers hire extra staff or security guards over the holiday season, which increases the shoplifter’s chance of getting caught. Common items people shoplift over the holidays include:
Electronics and accessories, including cell phones, cases, headphones;
Designer clothing and accessories; and
If you are contemplating shoplifting, it’s important to keep in mind that you won’t be able to provide for or help your loved ones at all if you’re locked up. If you are struggling to provide for your family or friends over the holidays, there are a number of organizations that can help, such as the Salvation Army, the Goodfellow Fund, and Toys For Tots.
Home and car burglaries typically increase during the holidays. Shopping bags or gifts left in vehicles can be too tempting for an opportunistic thief to pass up. Likewise, a beautifully decorated tree in front of a window with presents all around attracts more than just children. Burglaries this time of year are often of the smash-and-grab variety. Burglary charges can be very serious – no matter what time of year – leading to steep fines, possible jail time, and felony convictions. In addition, gun carrying citizens have the right to protect their homes, including using deadly force. Many burglars have found out the hard way that the risk did not outweigh the reward.
What should you do when being Charged with a Crime?
If you have been searching the Mississippi area for a qualified, experienced criminal defense attorney, look no further than Vic Carmody Jr., P.A. Over the years, we have helped numerous offenders pursue favorable outcomes. Although being accused of a crime is not a pleasant experience, there are many potential defense strategies that can be used to defend and reduce the charges against an offender. Call/contact us today for your free consultation to learn more.
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