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How Rape Can Happen

Rape occurs when a person has engaged in sexual activity with another that has not given consent. According to the website of the Nashville sex offense lawyer Brent Horst, rape is a Class B Felony, with a fine of up to $25,000 and prison sentence of up to 30 years. It is even worse if the rape has involved coercion, force, or weapons, because it can be elevated into aggravated rape, which has elevated fines and prison sentences too, of up to $50,000 and 60 years.
These are just for the state of Tennessee, but they give you a clear idea on how devastating the consequences are for convicted rapists. But how can rape happen? It can happen in various instances, even on scenarios where it is not as obvious.

 

Through Force

One of the most known way rape can occur is through physical power, like when a stranger suddenly goes up into an unsuspecting woman and forces himself into her to satisfy his sexual needs. Due to its blatant nature, it is also the easiest case to win, because of the likely availability of physical evidence, like wounds.

Through Threat

Not all rape cases involve blatant use of strength. Many rape cases involve victims who are forced to give in to the sexual advances of the suspected rapist because the suspected rapist has made threats. Threats may come in many forms, but usually, they involve warnings of harm to the victim or the victim’s loved ones, if he or she fails to comply to the suspected rapist’s sexual demands.

Without Consent

One of the most important aspects of rape is that the sexual activity is non-consensual. This can occur on two ways. First, the victim may not be legally allowed to give consent because of his or her age, so the sexual activity, even if it technically features two individuals who have done it in their free will, is still legally non-consensual and therefore considered rape.
Second, the victim may be unable to give his or her consent. The best examples of this are individuals who are intoxicated, unconscious, or mentally incapacitated.

Amusement Park Accidents and Injuries

Amusement parks are places for recreation, but there are times where they are also places for disaster, especially if the property owners, managers, ride designers, and maintenance providers become negligent. According to the website of Williams Kherkher, those who have been hurt in amusement park accidents may have legal options to pursue against the negligent parties that have caused the accidents.

Common Causes of Accidents
Mechanical failure: Defects can lead to malfunctions on the rides or their parts. These malfunctions may come in many forms, such as detachments of safety harnesses and breakages of important ride components.

Maintenance issue: Rides are complicated marvels of engineering, and they need to be properly maintained to ensure that they are in top condition so they can perform their tasks efficiently and safely. Lack or improper maintenance may lead to defects and malfunctions.
Staff negligence: Operators and other amusement park staff have safety procedures to follow. Failing to do or enforce these procedures may result into accidents. The best example of this is the abrupt stoppage of rides.

Improper behavior: Fellow passengers and other people on the amusement park can also compromise your safety, such as those who stand while mid-air in the ride, bring out cameras and other objects while in the ride, and others who do not follow safety regulations.

Common Injuries from Accidents
Head injury: The head is very vulnerable to amusement park accidents, leading to complications like face disfigurement, skull fracture, and brain trauma.

Whiplash: The bumps and jolts associated with certain amusement park rides can catch the neck in a relaxed state, causing the neck to abruptly move forward and backward. This motion may be powerful enough to injure the neck and its surrounding areas.

Back injury: Detaching objects and extreme forces may be powerful enough to cause damage to the back area of victims. The worst back injuries involve the spinal cord. Injuries in the spinal cord may lead to paralysis and other complications that revolve around motor and sensory problems.

Broken bones: Many rides involve tremendous amounts of force, but they are safe. When the safe part has been compromised, the force may be strong enough to break bones, particularly in the arm and leg area, as they are often the exposed parts.

Drowning and other water-related injuries: There are also rides that involve water. Anything that can compromise the safety of passengers may lead to drowning, slipping, or falling off watercraft or elevated spaces.

Speed Limits are Intended to Keep People Safe

The faster a car travels, the lesser time it will take to reach its destination. But while speed may be advantageous time-wise, it can be a risk where road safety is the issue.

Speeding, as shown in the records of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), is the third major reason behind fatal car accidents. Every year, this ill road behavior causes about 13,000 fatal accidents.

Though the number of fatal car crashes has significantly been reduced during the past 10 years (from 42,000 annually to 36,000), the number of motor vehicle accidents continue to remain above five million, causing more than two million injuries. According to the NHTSA, ninety-four percent of car crashes are traceable to driver error. Driver error, which points to bad driving behavior, has become an epidemic on U.S. roads and highways. Its major classifications include drunk-driving, reckless driving, driving aggressively, distracted driving and speeding.

A driver, who goes above a determined speed limit, increases the risk of accident and compromises the safety of many others on the road. This is because speeding, as proven through studies and actual events, reduces a driver’s reaction time to danger, makes stopping or slowing down a vehicle much harder, and lessens a driver’s control over his/her vehicle; it would also be like inviting death if one were to drive at fast speeds while impaired by alcohol and/or illegal drugs.

Those who often drive above the set speed limit reason out that speeding enables them to be on time for appointment or work. Some say, however, that they are not aware of what the speed limit is; they feel that they are still in control of their vehicle even when driving over the speed limit; keeping up with slower drivers causes pressure; they will not be caught anyway or, even if they do get caught, damages, if they happen to cause any, will be paid by their insurance provider.

Aside from increasing the likelihood of a car accident, speeding also significantly affects the consequence of a car crash. This is because other than the possibility of causing major damage to properties, driving at fast speeds can also result to more severe injuries or death.

As much as some drivers may disagree with the particular limit imposed along a given stretch of road, Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg explain that speed limits are intended to keep people safe. When people choose to drive faster than the speed limit allows, for whatever reason they may claim to have, they demonstrate an obvious and willful disregard for the safety of others that is likely to make them liable for any accidents they cause.

The Challenges of Driving A Motorcycle

Most people prefer driving a motorcycle because it allows them to cut through traffic and reduce travel time tremendously. But while they offer convenience, motorcycles also put drivers at a greater risk of accidents than other vehicles. Figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) revealed that motorcyclists accounted for 14 percent of all traffic deaths, 4 percent of all injuries, 18 percent of all occupant fatalities and 4 percent of all occupants’ injuries. In 2013, it accounted for 94 percent of 4,668 deaths.

According to the website of Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, motorcycles not only pose serious threats to drivers but also susceptible to road conditions. There are several problems that a motorcycle faces which makes accidents involving them devastating. Here are some factors that can contribute to the seriousness of motorcycle accidents:

  • Visual Recognition. Motorcycles are less visible to other vehicles especially in intersections where 7 out of 10 motorcycle and other vehicle accidents occur. It is also difficult to see them during extreme weather conditions.
  • Road Hazards. Minor hazards to larger vehicles such as cars such as potholes, oil slicks, puddles, debris, uneven pavement and others are major hazards to a motorcycle.
  • Wobble Accidents. When running at high speed, the front end of a motorcycle may experience wobbling due to its instability. This is caused by a misalignment in the front and rear tires. If an accident is due to wobbling, the manufacture of the motorcycle may be held liable.
  • Riding Skills and Familiarity. Compared to a car, a motorcycle may require more skills and physical coordination. Many accidents have been attributed to lack of basic riding skills.

Common Injuries

When a driver loses control of the motorcycle, they experience different kinds of injuries which may include the following:

  • Concussion and brain damage. During a collision and without a safety gear, the head may get in contact with other vehicles or a hard object. Wearing a helmet can lessen the risk of death by 37 percent.
  • Broken joints. The elbows, shoulder, hips, knees, or wrists may become broken during an accident. Make sure you have protective pads specially in the shoulders and pelvis, which are the most susceptible joints to break.
  • Biker’s Arm. This is a condition wherein the nerves in the upper arm get damage during an accident. This may result to permanent paralysis of arm movement.
  • Facial Disfigurement. Without a full-face helmet, the slide may slide across the ground or smash into an object.

When driving a motorcycle, it is best to be always on the safe side than lose your ability to ride.

Drunk Driving Kills

You should never accept your fate in a drunk driving offense before talking it over with an experienced attorney. There are many factors which could contribute to an improper charge being given, whether it’s an incorrect breath test reading or an unfair field sobriety tests. Attorneys fight for your rights and look for any infraction to reverse or change your charge(s).

An attorney can assist with cross-examining a police report. These reports are written on the spot by a police officer to act as a narrative for the incident. There are often contradictions within these reports that a skillful attorney can use in court against the officer. The report is used as a conclusive method of describing why the arrest took place, but it doesn’t have to be taken as the final word in relation to your case.

A failed field sobriety test is another unfortunate circumstance that be turned around with the help of an attorney. According to James Powderly, this test is “seldom ever given correctly” and highlights the fact that “balancing tests are very unfair and difficult to perform regardless of alcohol consumption.” An experienced attorney will know how these tests are scored and meant to be given, giving them the ability to see through an incorrectly administered test.

Drug crimes are also often seen as too difficult to escape, but an attorney can work to protect your rights and freedom. By working closely with an attorney to examine the charges against you, you could have one or even all your charges dismissed or drastically decreased in severity. Do not accept a plea bargain or waive your right to a fair trial without an attorney fully investigating your case. Click here to learn more about how you can defend yourself against a drug charge.

The Volkswagen Scandal and the Dangers of Nitrogen Oxides

It has been over a week since the massive scandal of Volkswagen’s “defeat devices” became public. Volkswagen admitted to installing over 480,000 US vehicles and 11 million worldwide with these devices that could detect when an emission test was being performed. During an emissions test, the device activated and reported pollutant readings below the legal limit. However, the real-world tests of VW vehicles showed discrepancies of up to 10 to 40 times the legal limit of nitrogen oxides.

Nitrogen oxides are dangerous pollutants that are heavily regulated by the Clean Air Act and many organizations. They contribute to smog and other harmful effects on the environment such as particulate matter and ozone damage. Most troubling, nitrogen oxides are associated with a wide range of health problems in individuals. Exposure to nitrogen oxide has been linked to increased asthma attacks, other serious respiratory conditions, and cardiovascular disease. These dangerous effects have been shown in individuals suffering from previous respiratory conditions as well as healthy individuals.

Troublesome facts like these linked to nitrogen oxides have added to the immense criticism Volkswagen has received for their cheating scandal. Although the company has issued numerous apologies for their cheating, they still may face up to $18 billion in fines for their violation of the Clean Air Act and countless class action law suits. In addition, Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn has already resigned while the amount of employees involved in the scandal remains unclear.

According to the website of the Driscoll Firm, owners of the affected vehicles are outraged after the car they bought specifically for its environmentally friendly impact was actually doing the exact opposite. Although sales of affected vehicles have been halted across dealers, no VW cars have officially been recalled yet. Owners of the affected vehicles have been told to still drive their vehicles until further action by VW is taken.

Can a Criminal Allegation Affect My Life?

An old saying that has been passed down through the years is the one stating that there is no one person who is above the law. The law was created in order to uphold justice and equality for all people to be accountable for their actions and so that people can live in some semblance of peace and harmony.

To antagonize the prospect of the law – to use it as something to use against another person – is not what the law is for though there are some instances where some people might think that it is used that way. Take a white collar criminal allegation such as conspiracy or fraudulence, according to the website of the lawyers with the Law Offices of Richard A. Portale, P.C., for example; these are acts of felony and are punishable by the law, yes, but the person who is accused of the crime can suffer very real repercussions if they are not held to the same standard of the law.

Innocent until proven guilty is another old saying that needs to be remembered – and it is one that should be upheld for even an allegation can permanently hurt a person’s reputation.

This is a day and age where information and influence are easily manipulated and not so readily recanted; should you be accused of a crime, it could damage your entire life and even the lives of your family. Opportunities – professional, educational, or even social – could be stripped away from you as soon as there is a mark on your record at anything even hinting at a criminal record.

That is why it is of the utmost importance to make sure that there is due justice where justice is due – and the law must serve without bias or malicious, ulterior motive.

What A Disabling Injury Can Do to A Construction Worker

They say that we never quite appreciate what we have until we lose it.

This has been true for workers who require certain skills and appendages in order to be able to work. Plenty of ballerinas have had to quit their craft after years of passion and dedication after a single injury. Can you imagine a painter or sculptor suddenly, inexplicably going blind? The loss lingers and stays for all the rest of their days. This is the same for any construction worker who has been injured on a construction site.

Construction workers go into the craft with the full knowledge of the risks that the job entails. They know that it is a dangerous job – but somebody’s got to do it. The craft itself can be incredibly rewarding if you love what you do. From simple welding to watching an empty patch of land slowly rise to heights, there is always going to be something beautiful in creation and construction workers are at the very forefront of that industry. That is why an injury that disables a construction worker can have catastrophic effects on not only the worker but the project as a whole in itself.

After all, people who work in construction often operate in groups. It takes an entire team to construct a house, a school, or even a major skyscraper, as is mentioned in the website of the Hankey Law Office.

Even if the injury was only somewhat disabled on site due to an accident, it could still send everything spiraling topsy-turvy in terms of financial security for the worker as well as productivity levels on the project then being worked on, according to the website of LaMarca Law Group, P.C. A worker could lose necessary wages for a certain period of time – or even forever, which then truly affects the worker and the injured worker’s family and beneficiaries. That is not even to mention the medical expenses necessary for the worker to recover from the event.

It can be a troubling time for any construction worker who suffered an injury while on the job but there are legal options to explore that could enable for the injured party to be sufficiently taken care of in these dark times.

The Different Kinds of Child Custody

One of the many variables to consider when separating a union or marriage is the children involved, if there are any. After all, the separation will affect the child all of his, her, or their lives and it is the rights and well-being of the child that must then be put into consideration and prioritized above all else.

In the website of Arenson Law Group, PC, they state that there are four different kinds of child custody situations that parents are often subjected to, depending on their circumstances and capabilities. It is important to understand all these situations. The first is noncustodial parent visitation type of relationship which is to say that the parent who is not the one legally responsible for the child and has custody of the child cannot visit the child without immediate, approved supervision from the court and guardian.

The second kind of type is the supervised visitation. Parents who fall under this type of visitation setting are then allowed visiting rights to their child within a secure area where they can be monitored during the allotted hours of visitation allowed. This may be due to the fact that the parents in question are at risk for whatever situation or are presented to be, in any way, a danger to themselves or those around them.

Another type of visitation is that of grandparents’ visitation. This one can be a little bit trickier since by court order, grandparents are not the immediate family of the child but this kind of visitation can be allowed if it is in the child’s best interest. This is usually done if the child in question has been adopted by a step parent or if one of the child’s parents has been missing for over a month. Grandparents cannot file for this kind of visitation if the married couple is still together.

The last kind of custody is amenable should the couple in question be amicable with one another and if each parent has displayed equal capability of care for the child as the fourth type is through parenting agreements. It is then an optimized and customized plan between the two parties that then place the needs of the child first in order to make sure that the child can live a life as fulfilled and happy as possible between the split of their parents.

Morcellators: Medical Malpractice or Product Liability?

Personal injury is, simply put, the legal terminology that is used in order to describe an injury that has been done unto another person (whether it be an injury of a physical, mental, or emotional nature) because of the intentional or willful negligence of another person or party. This is a general statement as there are quite a number of ways as to how a person could be injured. There are car accidents and workers compensation suits, just to name a few. But for now, the attention goes to the question of morcellators and whether or not they fall into medical malpractice or product liability.

First things first, what is a morcellator? Well, according to the Morcellator lawsuit attorneys of Williams Kherkher, a morcellator is a machine manufactured for the use of laparoscopic surgical procedures (otherwise known as surgeries that only require minimum intrusion and incisions thanks to the tools used to perform these tasks) as it is a thin, spherical device that has a sharp claw-like attachment at the end that then attaches itself to the cancerous growth and takes it through the tube via suction. However, there are claims that target three specific morcellators manufactured by Johnson & Johnson that have been recalled due to the claims that several patients have filed legal complaints that their devices were the ones that caused their having developed endometrial cancer (a cancer that targets the protective lining of the womb).

Which then begs the question: is this a case of medical malpractice or product liability?

In order to know what kind of legal suit you may have, it is recommended to seek the professional advice of people who have had experience with these kinds of dealings before.

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