Top Lincoln, NE Hate Crime Lawyers Near You

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

6940 O St, Suite 400, Lincoln, NE 68510

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

233 S 13th St, Suite 1100, Lincoln, NE 68501

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

201 N 8th St, Suite 242, Lincoln, NE 68501

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

610 J Street, Suite 200, Lincoln, NE 68508

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

121 S 13th St, Suite 702, Lincoln, NE 68508

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

1630 K Street, Lincoln, NE 68508

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

650 J St, #400, Lincoln, NE 68508

Hate Crime Lawyers | Lincoln Office

610 J Street, Suite 200, Lincoln, NE 68508

Lincoln Hate Crime Information

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Find a Hate Crime Attorney near Lincoln

What Is a Hate Crime?

A hate crime, or bias crime, is typically referenced as an offense that involves targeted persecution (often physical, but also emotional or psychological) of an individual for their (perceived or real) membership in a particular religious, racial, ethnic, gender or LGBTQ group. Some states, also protect political affiliation under state-level hate crime or bias crime statutes.

An individual committing assault against a victim due to the victim being an observant Muslim, a religion for which the offender has demonstrated deep-seated animosity, would qualify as a hate crime for example.

Types of Hate Crimes

hate crime is an unlawful act motivated by bias based on race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or disability. A “hate” offense is not in and of itself a crime, but the charge enhances the possible penalties. Once the prosecutor has proved that a defendant committed a crime and the offense was motivated by hate toward a specific group or characteristic, the severity of the punishment increases.

What States Don’t Have Hate Crime Laws?

While hate crimes are federally mandated laws, three states — namely Wyoming, South Carolina and Arkansas — do not carry state-level hate crime or bias crime statutes.

Is a Hate Crime a Felony?

At the federal level, hate crimes are generally classified as felonies given that there is a requisite harming, or serious attempt to do harm, to a victim. The punishment for a hate crime depends on the severity of the offense. If the assault results in the death of the victim, an attempt to kill the victim, aggravated sexual abuse of the victim or kidnapping — the maximum penalty can include life imprisonment. Otherwise, the maximum penalty is no more than 10 years in jail.

State level laws vary in the handling of hate crimes or bias crimes, with most jurisdictions allowing both misdemeanor and felony charges related to hate crimes. In some states, all hate crimes are considered to be felonies, while in others, hate crimes can either be classified as misdemeanors or as felony offenses.

The penalty for misdemeanor hate crime-related charges typically reaches a maximum of one year in county jail in addition to restitution or monetary fines, while those convicted of felony hate crime-related charges could face up to 10, 15 or even 20 years imprisonment, depending on the particulars of their offense.

How Is a Hate Crime Different From Other Crimes?

A hate crime differs from other categories of crime in two particularly ways.

First, the majority of other crimes focus their requisites in the realm of individual rights, responsibilities and the relationship between the offender and the victim outside of most sociopolitical framing. Hate crimes, rely almost entirely on the necessity for the offender to have an ideological reason (based on a deeply rooted bias or hate for one or more of the victim’s identity or biological groups) to motivate their criminal actions.

Second, hate crime-related charges are typically sought as penalty enhancements rather than as stand-alone charges. It is rare to see hate crime charges alone, rather than with other offenses such as assault, attempted murder or murder, sexual abuse and battery. Hate crime-related charges allow prosecutors, in most jurisdictions, to seek escalated penalties for the alleged perpetrator in response to the severity and maliciousness of their offense(s).

Have You Been Charged With a Hate Crime?

If you are convicted of a hate crime, your punishment can be increased and you could face serious time in prison. Call a Chicago attorney skilled in the defense of hate crimes to ensure you receive the best representation and avoid being sentenced to an enhanced penalty.

What to Do if Facing Federal Hate Crime Charges

If you are facing federal hate crime charges, it is strongly advised that you seek the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney at your earliest convenience.

Not only can retaining skilled and attentive legal counsel increase your odds of avoiding a conviction for hate crime-related charges, but also, in the event that taking your case to trial may prove disadvantageous, your lawyer will be best equipped to negotiate any potential plea deal on your behalf.

A conviction on charges related to hate or bias crimes is a serious matter, leaving you with a criminal record. For these reasons, among others, it is vitally important to retain adequate legal counsel.

Top Questions to Ask When Hiring an Attorney

  • How many years have you been practicing law? How long have you practiced law in the local area?
  • How many cases similar to mine have you handled in the past?
  • What is the likely outcome for my case?

In legal practice, experience matters. An experienced attorney will likely have handled issues similar to yours many, many times. Therefore, after listening to your situation, the attorney should have a reasonable idea of the time line for a case like yours and the likely resolution.

How to Prepare for Your Initial Consultation

Prepare for your consultation by writing down notes of your understanding of the case, jot down questions and concerns for the attorney, and gather your documents. Remember that you are trying to get a sense of whether the attorney has your trust and can help you address your legal issues. Questions should include how the attorney intends to resolve your issue, how many years he/she has been practicing law and specifically practicing in your area, as well as how many cases similar to yours the attorney has handled. It can also be helpful to broach the subject of fees so that you understand the likely cost and structure of your representation by a specific attorney and/or legal team.

How much does it cost to hire an attorney?

In general, how much an attorney costs will often depend on these four factors: billing method and pricing structure, type of legal work performed, law firm prestige, and attorney experience. Depending on the legal issue you are facing, an attorney may bill you by the hour, settle on a flat fee, or enter into a contingency fee agreement. The type of legal work you need help with will also play a role in cost incurred.

Common legal terms explained

Plaintiff – a person or party who brings a lawsuit against another person(s) or party/parties in a court of law. Private persons or parties can only file suit in civil court.

Judgment – A decision of the court. Also known as a decree or order. Judgments handed down by the court are usually binding on the parties before the court.

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