Ed Shaw Law - Brainerd Attorney
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Coronavirus Impact and Assurance: Yes! We are still open for business!

As you are all aware, we are currently facing unique challenges due to the Coronavirus. While this is a serious crisis, it is important to keep it in perspective, and not allow it to prevent us from going about our business. We want to assure all of our clients that this office is prepared to serve your needs, regardless of what happens and how the virus affects Minnesota. In an effort to keep the office safe, we have stepped up prevention and sanitation measures in hopes to prevent disease transmission.

Because we are a paperless office, our entire staff is prepared to work from home if necessary. No matter what happens, we will continue to provide our clients with the highest quality legal services.  So far, not one client or staff member has become infected based on contact at this office and we will continue with safety protocols in an attempt to keep it that way. My office will continue to put the safety of our staff and you as our top priority. We do greatly appreciate your cooperation in conducting business in a safe fashion by utilizing current technology. Regardless of what happens, we will continue to take care of all of your legal needs.

Please rest assured, we will continue to take care of your legal needs in this challenging time, and your safety is our highest priority.

Please see our blog for more info on pandemic response.

Study finds racial bias impacts bail decisions

| Jul 23, 2018 | Criminal Defense

Black defendants in Minnesota and throughout the United States are 2.4 percent more likely to be held during the legal process than white defendants. This is the key finding in a study to be published in The Quarterly Journal of Economics. Furthermore, it was determined that bail for black defendants was higher and that both white and black judges seemed to be biased against them.

As a general rule, those who are deemed a more significant risk to society will be given higher bail amounts. Research has shown that black defendants are thought of as more aggressive even though there is no clear evidence to back this up. The researchers behind the study say that making decisions based on data could work to reduce racial bias in the justice system. Providing additional training for judges could also help them to make decisions that are based more on facts and less on racial stereotypes.

Experienced judges were less likely to make decisions based on stereotypes. In Miami, experience judges are those who have at least 9.5 years on the job. The study looked at 162,836 court cases in Philadelphia County and another 93,417 cases in Miami-Dade County. The cases in Philadelphia County occurred between 2010 and 2014 while the ones in Miami-Dade County took place from 2006 to 2014.

Individuals who are charged with a crime have the right to be represented by a criminal defense attorney. An attorney may be able to challenge evidence, cast doubt on witness testimony or take other steps to help a defendant obtain a favorable outcome in his or her case. If these efforts are successful, those charged with a crime may be offered a plea deal or have their cases thrown out. A defendant may also be acquitted by a jury.