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To see just how successful our approach is, here are some representative results:
Charges: Threats of Violence - Felony
Departure granted. Sentenced as a gross misdemeanor over the State's strenuous argument. The client had made drunken threats of shooting up a bar and made a hand-gun motion. Despite this, the North Star team convinced the judge that these were less serious facts than a typical threats of violence case, which is not a small undertaking. With a well-researched written argument and a strong oral summation at the sentencing hearing, the Court agreed that the defense had proven to be correct and granted the departure. For a gentleman that enjoys hunting with family, this was a critical and fantastic result.
Charges: Domestic Assault by Strangulation - Felony; Domestic Assault - Misdemeanor
Plea to an amended count of Threats of Violence as a gross misdemeanor. This was a remarkably unique outcome that ultimately satisfied all of the client's goals - no jail, minimal fine, and preserved his gun rights upon completion of probation. The client turned down a better plea deal to a misdemeanor assault (non-domestic), but was concerned with losing his gun rights for three years, which state law mandates even on non-domestic assault convictions. So, the North Star team got creative and figured out a resolution that accomplished exactly this. Despite facing serious domestic assault strangulation felony charges and a prior allegation against him, we were able to get a non-jail, non-felony outcome and saved his gun rights from the three-year prohibition. This proves, once again, that the North Star team takes the big picture approach and tailors the strategy to each clients needs. While this is a worse outcome than an offer previously received, it's the right and perfect outcome for this client, which is what matters most.
Charges: 2nd Degree Assault with a Dangerous Weapon (Felony); Threats of Violence (Felony); False Imprisonment (Felony); Domestic Assault (Misdemeanor)
Norgaard plea, received a stay of adjudication on the threats of violence charge, stay of imposition to an added count of interfering with an emergency call (gross misdemeanor), and a stay of imposition to the misdemeanor domestic assault charge. This negotiated outcome results in no felony conviction on his record and, instead, just misdemeanor convictions. For an individual facing three serious felony charges, including the second degree assault with a dangerous weapon that would've required a year in prison if convicted, this is a fantastic result. The top priorities for the client were avoiding a felony record and prison time. The North Star team engaged in extensive and creative negotiations over lengthy litigation, ultimately culminating in this deal on the doorstep to trial. Considering the allegations, a motivated victim, and challenging evidence to overcome, accomplishing the client's objectives seemed unlikely to begin, but eventually came to fruition with the strategy implemented.
Charges: 1st Degree Burglary (Felony); Interference with an Emergency/911 Call (Gross Misdemeanor); and Domestic Assault (Misdemeanor)
Plea to the misdemeanor domestic assault, dismissal of the remaining counts, and no jail time to serve. The client was staring at a presumptive commitment to prison on the felony burglary count. And while the client took some proactive steps toward sobriety - because alcohol was an underlying issue in the case - full sobriety was not achieved. The North Star team raised legal defenses to possibly challenge with the Court, but also successfully leveraged in plea negotiations. The result is this incredible result where the client avoids prison, local jail time, and a long-term felony conviction record. This accomplished everything the client was hoping for, even though he didn't even believe it was possible. Another great result by the North Star team.
Charges: Identity Theft - Felony (presumptive prison commitment); Wrongfully Obtaining Assistance-Theft of State Social Services - Felony
Stay of adjudication and no time to serve. The client was facing a presumptive commitment to prison due to the identity theft charge - which was a stretch, but nonetheless was a major issue to deal with. And despite evidence clearly pointing to our client bilking the State out of five-figures worth of money from social services payments, the North Star team did their due diligence in researching key legal issues. Namely, the search that led to much of the evidence was suspect and the North Star team found a creative and novel legal argument that turned the table in the case. As a result, the client received a stay of adjudication, which means he will never be convicted of anything and the case will be dismissed following a minimal period of probation in which he merely has to have no same or similar incidents. He could not ask for a better negotiated outcome. He and his family are thrilled to have obtained this incredible outcome and for trusting North Star Criminal Defense.
Charges: Threats of Violence - Felony
Domestic assault diversion program, which will result in an outright dismissal of the case after a brief probationary period. The client was facing serious allegations of threatening her husband's life with a knife. The North Star team's immediate involvement helped get the client on the right track with proactive steps and verifiable sobriety. The result is that we had the leverage to push for this unique and rare outcome. Our understanding is that the County Attorney's office has only permitted less than a handful of matters to enter this relatively new diversion program. Thankfully, our creative efforts and the trust they had in us and our client paid off.
Charges: 6 counts of felony tax crimes
Plea to amended counts of a gross misdemeanor failing to file tax returns. The original offer was to plead guilty to felony counts and serve upwards of 180 days via custody and home monitoring. The plea agreement drastically improved this. The client will only be convicted of a gross misdemeanor crime and serve no more than 30 days, via 3 days in custody and the balance on home monitoring. The remaining terms of probation are minimal and only for two years. The best part is this plea agreement leaves the client in a much better position to salvage his professional license and, therefore, his career. Even when facing daunting felony charges, the North Star team pushed through with a strong strategy to achieve the client's goal and keep him on the right path moving forward.
Charges: 1st Degree Drugs Sales / Possession - Felonies
Stay of Imposition with no further jail to serve. This is a MASSIVE victory. The client was facing a mandatory commitment to prison for many years. Worse, this mandatory commitment was based on TWO separate statutory reasons applicable in her case. And the client had no viable defense to the charges. Yet, unfazed by these significantly difficult facts, the North Star team worked with our client to get her in a strong position to improve our negotiation position. Armed both her good behavior since the incident, proactive steps, and a clean overall record, we were able to negotiate an outcome that kept her out of prison or jail, and she will earn a misdemeanor after her probationary period, which only includes minimal terms. When all is said and done, she'll have a misdemeanor conviction with no further time to serve, all completed within the time frame that she would have been in prison under the presumptive commitment law. An absolutely incredible outcome by the North Star team.
Charges: Theft by Swindle - Felony
Plea to a gross misdemeanor theft count. The client was caught on camera swapping UPC code stickers to purchase expensive items for much cheaper. Needless to say, we had no actual defense to these charges. Despite this - and a County Attorney who was none too pleased with our clients behavior and belief that his actual wrongdoing far exceeded what they could prove - the North Star team got a plea agreement to a non-felony and no jail to serve. The client could not be happier to avoid the felony outcome and not have to do any time in custody.
Charges: Third and Fifth Degree Drug Charges - Felonies
Stay of Adjudication. Client visits North Star looking at his third felony, with possible prison connotations, for more than four hundred (!!) prescription pills and a bill with a testable amount of powder cocaine on it, all within his possession. After intense negotiations and motion practice, the State alters its offer to a stay of adjudication on two drug counts at fifth degree; no jail to serve--not an hour, and no real additional consequences past a $50 fine; the matter is not a conviction, and will be dismissed in anticipation of an expungement in as little as a year. This, notwithstanding a full confession.... When you or someone you care about gets trapped in a terrible spot, which lawyer you retain to salvage what can be saved makes all the difference. All the difference....