Gang Violence Lawyers in Worcester
Dedicated Criminal Defense Law Firm
Gang violence, by nature, is more brutal and frequently committed than violence of simple passion or greed. Because violent gang members have a high re-offense rate, prosecutors and judges almost always seek the harshest possible penalty for gang-affiliated crimes.
With 50 years of combined experience, the Worcester criminal defense attorneys at Murphy & Rudolf, LLP can diligently defend clients against gang violence charges.
Call us today at (508) 744-3038 for a free consultation.
Federal Law Regarding Street Gangs
Federal law sets out a specific definition of a street gang. Understanding how the law and law enforcement define what a gang is and what constitutes membership is essential to building a solid defense, because much of a defense argument may rest on proving the defendant is not a gang member. At Murphy & Rudolf, LLP, our Worcester criminal defense lawyers keep up-to-date on federal and state laws regarding street gang violence and can defend you tenaciously in court.
Three specific aspects of a street gang include:
- One or more of its primary purposes is the commission of one or more criminal offenses
Its members engage or have engaged in a continuing series of offenses in the past five years
The activities of its members affect foreign or interstate commerce
Law enforcement classifies people associated with gangs into broad categories based on age and level of involvement in gang activities. The first category involves children who may know or occasionally associate with gang members on a limited basis and may imitate or admire the older gang members. These youths are generally between the ages of seven and nine years old and are considered “at risk” or “peripheral” to gang activity.
Gang Affiliates Versus True Gang Members
Another category, known as gang associates or affiliates, involves children between the ages of 9 and 13 or between the ages of 7 to 18. These affiliates may consider themselves members of the gang but have not been formally initiated and are usually not engaged in serious criminal activity outside of vandalism or serving as lookouts or runners. True gang members, however, range from ages 14 to 20 and perpetrate most of the crimes committed by the gang, and they are typically more deeply indoctrinated into the gang lifestyle.
Legal Defense Strategies for Gang Violence Charges
Assuming that a dismissal based on police procedure in the investigation or arrest of the accused is not possible, the first line of defense is often to cast doubt on evidence or witnesses that identify the accused as the perpetrator. The defense may also try to limit or deny the affiliation of the accused with a gang in an effort to minimize the potential penalties. The Worcester criminal defense attorneys at Murphy & Rudolf, LLP can discuss your options throughout the process and defend you in court.
Call us today at (508) 744-3038 for diligent case preparation and tenacious representation.