An Interview with St. Louis Criminal Defense Lawyer, Kevin Roach
The following is an interview with St. Louis Criminal Defense Lawyer, Kevin Roach, in which he discusses the most common defense cases he defends in the state of Missouri.
Interviewer: Could you provide us with an idea of all the different kind of common crimes that you represent people for starting with drug offenses. You must see a lot as a leading St. Louis criminal defense lawyer. What else is there?
Kevin Roach: Some of the more common offenses that I handle; one would be drug offenses. Drug offenses can be broken down into either felony or misdemeanor charge. Typically you see if it is marijuana under 35 grams it is classified as a Class A misdemeanor. If it is anything other than marijuana or marijuana over 35 grams it is typically classified as Class C Felony. I see a lot of possession cases.
Other Than Drug Possession, DWI’s and Theft are The Most Common Offenses
Other common offenses we see are DWIs. It is probably the single most common criminal offensive. Those are also can be felony and misdemeanors. A third common offensive that I see are stealing charges. Those can also be, if it is stealing under 500 it's classified as a Class A misdemeanor. If it is stealing over then it is generally classified as a Class C felony. Then probably the last category that I see on a regular basis would be violent crimes like assaults. I see quite a few of those. It can be either misdemeanors or felonies. I see a lot of domestic assaults. It could be husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend, family members get into scuffles, arguments. One or both of them is charged with domestic assault which is normally a Class A misdemeanor.
White Collar Crimes Such as Fraud and Embezzlement are Quite Common
Interviewer: As a St. Louis criminal defense lawyer, do you represent people for any white collar crimes?
Kevin Roach: Yeah, I see a lot of white collar cases. A lot of those involve stealing. That is kind of another classification of stealing. You see embezzling. For instance, someone is stealing form their employer. If it's over a certain amount it can be charged as a felony. A lot of times those may go to Federal US District court. Those are considered white collar crimes. It's typically embezzlement type of case. Yeah, those are a little less common. Those aren't the run of the mill like a run of the mill stealing or shop lifting case. You see quite a few of those but the white collars are a little less common.
Common Concerns after Being Arrested For a Crime
Interviewer: If someone were to get arrested for a crime, how bleak is their situation going to be?
Kevin Roach: That is a very good question. That is something that people are concerned about. They are concerned, 'Are my neighbors going to know about this? Is my employer going to know about this? Is this going to be a public record?' Those are big concerns with people. A large percentage of my clients, this is the first time they've been charged with a crime. They don't know. They are not familiar with the judicial system. Everybody is concerned that their name is going to be out there. That is a question I get on a regular basis and I really appreciate the opportunity to discuss that with you. What I like to do with people is I explain that it is generally most charges are not accessible to your employer. Your employer is not going to get notified. There is not going to be a public notice in the paper that you are charged with drug possession or DWI or whatever the charge may be. For most charges, it is not public. Of course, the police department and the prosecuting attorney have access to your criminal record. You can obtain a copy of your criminal arrest record but as a general rule it is not public record.
In Missouri, Criminal Offenses of a Serious Nature are Accessible on a Website called Casenet
Now, in the past few years, Missouri has implemented a website called Casenet which is broken down into the circuits. Any cases that go to the Circuit Court, a lot of times they are in there. Those are generally more serious cases. It will show your case. Those cases are in Casenet, so they can be accessed. As a general rule, most offenses are not in Casenet. The answer to your question is sometimes they are accessible but most of the time there is not public information out there that just anybody can access.
Being Arrested for a Crime Mostly Causes Either Regret or Denial
Interviewer: Over the years what have you learned about people’s behavior and their reaction to being arrested and prosecuted for a crime? What sort of human insights have you seen in this whole process?
Kevin Roach: I have seen on a regular basis usually people fit into two categories. I see people come into my office. Usually, it is people that are very regretful. They are really sorry for what they did. They want to make it right. They want to address the issue. Most of the time they just don't want to throw themselves at the mercy of the court. They want it to be fair. They are regretful, they want to address the issue and take care of it. That is the rule on the majority of people I see. The second big group that I see is people that are a lot of times in denial. They may not fully grasp the severity of what is going on. You may see someone that has a long line of arrests and convictions. Sometimes they just don't get it. They seem to think that the charges are bogus. They don't want to acknowledge that there are consequences for the actions that they've made. I see that on a regular basis. I much rather confer with a person that is in full disclosure. They want to tell me everything so I can properly defend them. I don't like to if is very frustrating dealing with people in that second category, when they are in denial about the situation.
Kevin J. Roach is a St. Louis criminal defense lawyer who has defended thousands of DWI and DUI cases in the St. Louis Metro area. Call us today at (636) 519-0085 or (866) 519-0085 for your Free Consultation!