Category Archives: Criminal

Handling the Stress when a Loved One has Pending Charges

Having a loved one with pending criminal charges is extremely stressful. Here are some practical ways to deal with that stress. Be there emotionally for your loved one but set healthy boundaries. Your loved one needs you now, more than ever so that he or she can vent, cry, complain, and otherwise process what happened. Allow this to occur but then take breaks so that you can recharge. You’re not helping your loved one if you allow the negative emotions to take over your life. Show your loved one that you love him or her by not putting your lives on hold just because charges are pending. Continue to live legally and morally. Plan fun events that are legal and moral that you and your loved one can enjoy together now. Talk to your loved one about ways to make extra income to pay for the attorney, fines, and fees. If he or she doesn’t want to talk about it, brainstorm on your own. For example, you and/or your loved one could get a job, take on extra work, get a second job, obtain a home equity line of credit, or sign up for contract work through Discuss with your loved one the potential problems that a criminal conviction can cause and try to solve them now. For example, you may need to get a job if he or she receives a prison sentence. You should begin looking for a job now instead of waiting until after the sentencing. Explore how to eliminate unnecessary spending with your loved one. Unnecessary spending causes additional stress that you don’t need. Some examples are cable TV, designer clothes, the latest iphone, gym membership, Starbucks coffee, buying DVDs and eating out all the time. Brainstorm how to get needs and wants met for little or no money with your loved one. For example, you need and want to keep watching new DVD movies but have decided it’s unnecessary to keep buying them. Apply for a public library card and start checking them out for free instead. Hire an experienced defense attorney. His experience and compassion can help relieve a great deal of stress. Attorney Gary Rohlwing has over three decades of experience. Call him today for a free consultation.   My Specialty Practice Areas: Criminal DUI Domestic Violence   My Office is in Glendale, AZ Law Offices of Gary L Rohlwing 7112 N 55th Ave Glendale, AZ 85301 (623) 937-1692

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Arizona’s Duty To Report Law

Arizona’s duty to report law is found at A.R.S. § 13-3620. All of the information below is taken from that law. A.R.S. § 13-3620(A) provides in relevant part: “A. Any person who reasonably believes that a minor is or has been the victim of physical injury, abuse, child abuse, a reportable offense or neglect that appears to have been inflicted on the minor by other than accidental means or that is not explained by the available medical history as being accidental in nature or who reasonably believes there has been a denial or deprivation of necessary medical treatment or surgical care or nourishment with the intent to cause or allow the death of an infant who is protected under section 36-2281 shall immediately report or cause reports to be made of this information to a peace officer, to the department of child safety or to a tribal law enforcement or social services agency for any Indian minor who resides on an Indian reservation, except if the report concerns a person who does not have care, custody or control of the minor, the report shall be made to a peace officer only. . . .For the purposes of this subsection, “person” means: Any physician, physician’s assistant, optometrist, dentist, osteopath, chiropractor, podiatrist, behavioral health professional, nurse, psychologist, counselor or social worker who develops the reasonable belief in the course of treating a patient. Any peace officer, child welfare investigator, child safety worker, member of the clergy, priest or Christian Science practitioner. The parent, stepparent or guardian of the minor. School personnel, domestic violence victim advocates or sexual assault victim advocates who develop the reasonable belief in the course of their employment. Any other person who has responsibility for the care or treatment of the minor.” Read the original document of the law by visiting Some organizations, such as the Girl Scouts, have determined that their adult volunteers have a duty to report pursuant to A.R.S. §13-3620(A)(5). According to A.R.S. §13-3620(O), a person who violates A.R.S. §13-3620 is guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor if it’s not a reportable offense or a class 6 felony if it is a reportable offense. A.R.S. §13-3620(P)(4) defines a “reportable offense” as the following: 4. “Reportable offense” means any of the following: (a) Any offense listed in chapters 14 and 35.1 of this title or section 13-3506.01. (b) Surreptitious photographing, videotaping, filming or digitally recording or viewing a minor pursuant to section 13-3019. (c) Child sex trafficking pursuant to section 13-3212. (d) Incest pursuant to section 13-3608. (e) Unlawful mutilation pursuant to section 13-1214.” Original found on If you have been charged with failure to report, you need an experienced attorney to defend you. Attorney Gary Rohlwing has over thirty years experience. Call him today for a free consultation. Read more about my practice areas.

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Criminal Sentence Commutations & The Arizona Board of Executive Clemency

The Arizona Board of Executive Clemency was created in 1994 as part of the Arizona Truth-in-Sentencing Act. The following information is from the Arizona Board of Executive Clemency website on how to obtain a commutation of sentence: (Find the original article source at   “A commutation of sentence is a change or modification of a sentence imposed by the court. The Governor may only grant a commutation of sentence upon recommendation of the Board (A.R.S. §31-402). Applications for a Commutation are available on this website in the “Forms” section. Completed applications should be sent to the Department of Corrections, Time Comp Division, 1601 West Jefferson Street, Phoenix, Arizona 85007. Applications sent directly to the Board of Executive Clemency will be returned to the originator. Only those applications certified as eligible by DOC will be forwarded to the Board for consideration and scheduling. Phase I Commutation Hearing The Phase I Hearing is an in-absentia hearing at the Board office. The Board will vote to either deny further action because the sentence imposed at the time of sentencing was not determined to be excessive or pass the application to a Phase II hearing. Members of the public, victims, inmate’s family and supporters, etc. are permitted to provide testimony regarding the sentence imposed by the judge at the time of sentencing to the Board at this hearing. The order of hearings, on the scheduled hearing day, is set by the panel chairperson. Phase II Commutation Hearing A Phase II Commutation Hearing is a hearing normally conducted with the inmate present via telephone or video conferencing. In some cases a Phase II Hearing may be conducted at a state institution with the inmate in attendance. The Board will vote to either deny further action on the Commutation Request or will recommend a reduction of sentence to the Governor. The Governor cannot consider a Commutation of Sentence without a recommendation from the Board. If the Board does recommend a reduction in sentence and the vote of the Board is unanimous the Governor must make a determination on the Board’s recommendation within 90 days. If the Board recommends a reduction in sentence but the vote of the Board is not unanimous then the Governor will make the final decision on the Commutation Request at their convenience. The time of a scheduled hearing, on the scheduled hearing day, is determined in cooperation with the Department of Corrections and is based on their security concerns.” Unfortunately, the probability that a prisoner will be granted a commutation of sentence is very low according to “No Indeterminate Sentencing without Parole” by Kevin Morrow and Katherine Puzauskas: “Statistics provided by Arizona Board of Clemency show that between 2004 and 2016 the Board heard an average of 594.9 clemency hearings per year, recommended an average of 48.2 prisoners a year to the governor who granted clemency to an average of 6.7, or 1.5% of all applicants. . .” If you or a loved one is facing charges where “life with a … Continue reading

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Low or No Cost Legal and Mental Health Services

Finding low or no cost legal and mental health services in the Phoenix metro area can be very frustrating when you make too much money to qualify for Community Legal Services and Arizona Medicaid (AHCCCS). Sliding fee scales for legal and mental health services are meaningless when they tell you that your “affordable” fee will be $70.00 per session! Listed below are low or no cost legal and mental health services that are currently accepting clients/patients, provide real help, and charge low fees (typically $12.00 or less per session) regardless of income.   Arizona Justice Center provides free legal counseling, marriage and family counseling, and addiction counseling. Call them at (623) 847 – 2772, e-mail them at or visit their website at   Arizona Legal Center helps answer a vital question: “Do I have a case?” Here is how they describe their free legal services on their website:   “The lawyers at the Legal Triage Program will vet your case for possible claims, defenses, and remedies, then identify possible resolutions or strategic options and provide appropriate referrals and resources for legal or other assistance in the community to help with matters that are found to be valid and viable.” Originally seen published on   The Arizona State University Counselor Training Center provides low cost mental health therapy for people residing in the Phoenix metro area. Here is a description of their services from their online brochure: “Counseling services are tailored to the concerns presented by the client, which might include but are not limited to: depression anxiety personal problems relationships family problems career counseling life transitions Clients are assigned to a counselor and scheduled for standing one-hour weekly appointments for the duration of the semester. Depending on when a client initiates services, he or she could receive up to 12 weeks of services. Counselors and clients work collaboratively to determine whether additional counseling is needed at the end of the semester.” Call them at (480) 965 – 5067, e-mail them at or visit their website at   Maricopa Integrated Health Care Systems runs the Desert Vista Outpatient Clinic which accepts patients based on medical need. Here is how they describe their services on their website: “The Desert Vista Outpatient Clinic provides comprehensive assessment and treatment to individuals experiencing difficulties related to psychiatric, psychological or emotional problems. We treat both adults and children in the Desert Vista Outpatient Clinic. Our services include intensive individual psychotherapy, group therapy, family therapy and medication management (if applicable). The clinic does not offer substance abuse treatment.”   The free or low cost legal services above do not handle criminal cases. If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges, you need an experienced attorney who has affordable rates. Attorney Gary Rohlwing has over thirty years experience and charges reasonable rates. Call him today for a free consultation.  

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Arizona Law on Bail

Article 2, §22(A) of the Arizona Constitution states: All persons charged with crime shall be bailable by sufficient sureties, except: For capital offenses, sexual assault, sexual conduct with a minor under fifteen years of age or molestation of a child under fifteen years of age when the proof is evident or the presumption great. For felony offenses committed when the person charged is already admitted to bail on a separate felony charge and where the proof is evident or the presumption great as to the present charge. Originally seen published on   The Arizona Court of Appeals has held that defendants held pursuant to Art. 2, §22(A) are entitled to a bail hearing according to Simpson v. Owens, 207 Ariz. 261, 85 P.3d 478 (App. 2004). The hearing must have the following procedural safeguards: (1) the right to counsel; (2) the opportunity to testify and present information; (3) the opportunity to cross-examine opposing witnesses; (4) the statutory factors governing the preventive-detention decision-making process; (5) a requirement of findings of fact and a statement of reasons for the decision; and (6) a requirement of proof by clear and convincing evidence. See Id., 207 Ariz. 261, 274, 85 P.3d 478, 491. On February 9, 2017, the Supreme Court of Arizona held that Article 2 section 22(A)(1) of the Arizona Constitution and A.R.S. § 13-3961(A)(2)-(4) were unconstitutional because they violated the 14th Amendment due process guarantee in Simpson v. Miller, CR-16-0227-PR (¶ 2). The Court found that such defendants are instead subject to A.R.S. § 13-3961(D): “Because Martinez is charged with a felony, he would be subject to A.R.S. § 13-3961(D), which allows the court to deny bail on the state’s motion if the court finds by clear and convincing evidence following a hearing that (1) “the person charged poses a substantial danger to another person or the community,” (2) “no condition or combination of conditions of release may be imposed that will reasonably assure the safety of the other person or the community,” and (3) “the proof is evident or the presumption great that the person committed the offense.” This procedure is essentially the same as the one upheld in Salerno. Under this provision, the state may deploy the entire range of permissible conditions of release to ensure community safety, including GPS monitoring. The court may deny bail altogether for defendants for whom such conditions are inadequate, which may well include many or most defendants accused of sexual conduct with a minor under age fifteen. Under our reading of Salerno, the state may deny bail categorically for crimes that inherently demonstrate future dangerousness, when the proof is evident or presumption great that the defendant committed the crime. What it may not do, consistent with due process, is deny bail categorically for those accused of crimes that do not inherently predict future dangerousness. The State urges that we should not hold the challenged provisions unconstitutional on their face because they may not be unconstitutional in all instances. See, e.g., Salerno, 481 U.S. at 751. The State, however, is … Continue reading

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