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The Celebrity Criminal Docket – Javaris Crittenton, former Wizard, in custody on murder charge.

Despite reports that he was set to turn himself in to police in Atlanta, Javaris Crittendon was arrested after checking in for a redeye flight in California. Link follows: http://www.wjla.com/articles/2011/08/javaris-crittenton-former-wizard-wanted-on-murder-charges-in-atlanta-65778.html

The Celebrity Criminal Docket – Former NBA player Javaris Crittendon wanted for murder.

Former Georgia Tech basketball standout and former Washington Wizard Javaris Crittendon is now wanted in Georgia for murder.  Prior to this past weekend, Crittendon’s biggest claim to infamy was an argument over a gambling debt, with Gilbert Arenas, that led to the ‘guns in the Verizon Center locker room incident‘ in 2009.  Now authorities in Los Angeles, Atlanta, and the FBI are on the hunt for the hoop star.

The victim, 23 year old Julian Jones, was shot on August 19th in Atlanta.  Reports suggest that she suffered a leg wound and died during surgery.  The story takes an even sadder twist because Jones is a mother of four young children and appears to have been an innocent bystander.  Authorities believe that Crittendon witnessed a person he suspected of robbing him months earlier walking down the street.  Crittendon allegedly fired shots from a black Chevy Tahoe, missing his intended target and fatally wounding Jones.

This case invokes an interesting legal doctrine called the felony-murder rule.  In the simplest form, this legal doctrine provides that if a homicide occurs during the commission or attempted commission of a felony, the homicide is a form of murder.  Here, the attempted murder of the suspected robber or the discharging of a firearm from a vehicle satisfy the commission or attempted commission of a felony prong.  The death of Jones satisfies the second prong.  While Crittendon is presumed innocent until proven guilty, Georgia’s felony murder statute sets the punishment for a felony murder conviction at life imprisonment or death.  So it goes without saying that once he is apprehended, Crittendon’s counsel will have a tough battle ahead.  TLODLB will track this case and posts updates as they become available.

* Attorney Bugg is admitted to practice law before the courts of the Commonwealth of Virginia, the District of Columbia, the federal courts of the Eastern District of Virginia, and the United States Supreme Court.  This blog site is intended to give for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed as formal legal advice and should not be interpreted to create a lawyer/client relationship. 

The Celebrity Criminal Docket – Rapper DMX arrested for driving 102mph.

No stranger to the criminal justice system, famed rapper DMX (born Earl Simmons) was arrested yesterday in Arizona for driving 102 miles per hour in a 65mph zone.  Reports suggest that he was charged with criminal speed, reckless driving, and driving on a suspended license.  Under current Virginia traffic laws, similar conduct could have resulted in DMX facing at least two Class 1 Misdemeanors.  In Virginia, Class 1 misdemeanors carry a maximum penalty of 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $2,500, either or both.  Maximum sentences on just two charges equates to 24 months of jail time should the judge order them to be served consecutively!

At this time it is unclear what particular method law enforcement utilized to determine the speed of DMX’s vehicle.  While 102 in a 65 is an eye-opener to read, I am certain there will be issues for X’s counsel to explore regarding proper speed detection methods.  Given DMX’s long record (at least 10 convictions), a conviction on his most recent charges could result in maximum punishment on all charges.  If I were representing Darkman X, I would immediately conduct a due diligence investigation into the equipment used to track speed and the particular officer’s training, certification, and operation of speed detection equipment that night.  I also recommend to my clients that they have the speedometer on their vehicle calibrated for accuracy.  I doubt DMX’s speedometer was off by 38 miles, but at such a high speed, anything that can help is worth pursuing.

TLODLB will track this case and post updates as they become available.

*This blog site is intended to give for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed as formal legal advice and should not be interpreted to create a lawyer/client relationship.  Attorney Bugg is admitted to practice law before the courts of the Commonwealth of Virginia, the District of Columbia, the federal courts of the Eastern District of Virginia, and the United States Supreme Court.