Durden Law Offices, P.C.                                                   

Attorney & Counselor at Law                                                                                                           Tel: (617) 449-7298

1354 Hancock Street, Suite 305                                                                                                        Fax: (617) 298-2738

Quincy, Massachusetts

02169

  • Assault and Battery

  • Aggravated Assault and Battery

  • Assault and Battery with a Dangerous Weapon  

  • Assault with a Dangerous Weapon 

  • Violation of 209A Orders 

  • Disorderly Person  

  • Threats 

  • OUI 

  • Larceny over $250 

  • Larceny by Check 

  • Drug Possession  

  • Drug Distribution 

  • Drug Trafficking 

  • Conspiracy 

  • Armed Robbery 

  • Unarmed Robbery 

  • Carjacking 

  • Habitual Offender  

  • Armed Career Criminal  

  • Possession of a Firearm 

  • Possession of Firearm in Commission of a Felony 

  • Insurance Fraud 

  • Rape 

  • Sexual Assault  

  • Attempted Murder  

  • Breaking and Entering in the Daytime 

  • Breaking and Entering in the Night time  

  • Trespass  

  • Assault and Battery on a Public Official  

  • Assault and Battery on a Police Officer 

  • Shoplifting 

  • Sex for a Fee 

  • Malicious Destruction of Property  

  • Home Invasion 

CRIMINAL DEFENSE PRACTICE

All criminal prosecutions begin with the filing of a criminal complaint. Most charges will begin with an arraignment in the District Court but the more serious state charges will be arraigned in the Superior Court.

Our office has successfully defended many criminal prosecutions from arraignment to trial. We have handled cases involving Insurance Fraud, Drug Possession, Drug Distribution, School Zone Violations, Firearm Possession, Assault & Battery, 209A Violations, and OUI's. We are dedicated to providing quality legal services throughout the criminal process. If you have been charged with a crime, we encourage you to contact our office. 


HOW DOES A CRIMINAL PROSECUTION BEGIN? 

Most criminal prosecutions brought in Massachusetts begin in the district courts with an application for criminal complaint filed with the Clerk of the court by either a law enforcement officer or a private citizen. After the complaint is filed, the Clerk will make a determination as to whether there is probable cause to believe a crime has been committed. If the clerk believes that there is enough information in the application, regardless of whether the allegations contained in application are true, the clerk will issue a complaint and the criminal process will begin. Clearly false information can support criminal charges. It is for this very reason the presumption of innocence is so important in our criminal system.

THE CRIMINAL COMPLAINT AND ARRAIGNMENT

Once a complaint has issued, provided the Defendant has not been arrested, the Defendant will be notified of the charges against him by receiving a summons to appear in court to be "arraigned" on the criminal charges. In some cases, before an arraignment is scheduled, the Defendant will be notified that he needs to appear in Court for a "Clerk's hearing" to determine whether a criminal complaint should issue. It is at this point in the criminal process that most people realize that they need the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney. 

Once a criminal complaint is issued in Massachusetts and the Defendant is formally arraigned on the criminal charges, the process for the preparation for trial immediately begins. During this time, your attorney will begin preparation for trial by acquiring as much information about the facts that support the charges. The prosecutor is under an obligation to provide the Defense attorney with the information he needs to either prepare for trial or begin the discussion necessary in plea negotiations. It is important that the Defense attorney is persistent and aggressive so that he can acquire all the information he or she needs to successfully represent the client. Sometimes, the Prosecution has not finished its investigation and a criminal complaint was filed prematurely. This will become more evident as the Defense attorney asks for certain crucial evidence. Also, often although there was not enough information for a Clerk to determine that a criminal complaint should issue, there is not enough evidence to support a conviction at trial. An experienced attorney is needed to make these types of determinations. 

YOUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS

 

The United States Constitution and the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights provides citizens with certain protections from an overbearing state and/or federal government. Many times, in an effort to fight crime, law enforcement will infringe on the rights of citizens hoping to detect criminal activity that may or may not be occurring. When this happens it is not an affront to just the individual's rights but the rights of all citizens in the community.

A criminal defense attorney will investigate and review the facts of a case to determine whether your constitutional rights have been violated. If the attorney determines that your rights have been violated, or if there is reason to believe they may have been, the attorney will file the appropriate motions with the court and argue that law enforcement suffer some consequence for their illegal actions. The consequence law enforcement may suffer as a result of its actions could include the "suppression" of illegally obtained evidence or in extreme cases, an outright dismissal of the criminal action. In the event the evidence is suppressed, often times the prosecutor will be unable to proceed with the criminal prosecution and the charges will be dismissed.

PLEA NEGOTIATIONS

 In the case where the evidence against the Defendant is overwhelming, having an experienced criminal defense attorney is still very important. There are different types of resolutions a case can have, from suspended sentences and straight probation, to continuances without a finding, and in some cases pretrial probation. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be familiar with these various types of dispositions and will know what a "good deal" is. Often times a "good deal" will depend on not just a person's history or lack of history with the criminal justice system, but also on the factual allegations underpinning the charges. A weak factual basis for the charge, for example, may result in a lighter sentence. An experienced criminal defense attorney will know these factors. 

 

TRIAL

 

In some cases a criminal matter can only be resolved with a trial of the facts before a judge or a jury. The decision to try a case is one that should not be taken lightly. The decision to waive a jury trial and try the case in front of a judge is one that should always be made with the advice and counsel of an attorney. And, the decision to represent oneself at a trial is very rarely if ever a good decision. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be familiar with the rules of evidence and know when to object to inadmissible evidence at trial; he or she will have worked with you to develop a viable theory of the case which will be the focus of every part of your defense from cross examination of the witnesses to opening and closing statements. A criminal defense attorney will also discuss with you whether it is a good idea to testify or not.

 CONTACT OUR OFFICE

 

Our office has handles many trials. In our criminal defense practice, we have successfully tried cases involving insurance fraud, domestic violence, drug distribution, drug possession, kidnapping, violations of restraining order, and larceny from a person.

 

If you have been charged with a crime, we encourage you to contact our office at 617-328-4844.