Top Cheyenne, WY Hate Crime Lawyers Near You

Hate Crime Lawyers | Cheyenne Office

1912 Capitol Ave, 5th floor, Cheyenne, WY 82001

Hate Crime Lawyers | Cheyenne Office

2515 Warren Ave, Suite 450, Cheyenne, WY 82003

Hate Crime Lawyers | Cheyenne Office

217 West 18th St, Cheyenne, WY 82001

Cheyenne Hate Crime Information

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Find a Hate Crime Attorney near Cheyenne

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.

Best Time to Seek Legal Help

No matter what your legal issue may be, it is always best to seek legal help early in the process. An attorney can help secure what is likely to be the best possible outcome for your situation and avoid both unnecessary complications or errors.

Tips on Approaching an Initial Attorney Consultation

  • Use the consultation as a means of gaining a better understanding of your legal situation.
  • Ask the attorney how many cases similar to yours he/she has handled. An attorney’s experience and knowledge can speak to their expertise (or lack of) in addressing your situation.
  • Your attorney should be able to articulate roughly how long a case like yours will take to resolve and what sort of procedures to expect.
  • Determine how comfortable you are working with the lawyer and/or law firm.

Does firm size matter?

For most consumer legal issues, the size of the practice is much less important than the experience, competence, and reputation of the attorney(s) handling your case. Among the most important factors when choosing an attorney are your comfort level with the attorney or practice and the attorney’s track record in bringing about quick, successful resolutions to cases similar to yours.

Common legal terms explained

Personal jurisdiction – Requirement that a particular court have authority over a person, in order to bind that person to the judgment of the court, based on minimum contacts. International Shoe Co v. Washington is a landmark Supreme Court case outlining the scope of a state court’s reach in personal jurisdiction.

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