A: Thank you for reaching out. Couple things of concern:
You are going to be in law school. This charge will cause you some grief when you apply to the bar; specifically, even though you win the charge and your record is sealed, make sure you tell the bar about it on your application and don't sugar coat it. Keep good records about all this. It will come up in your life again. All through law school you will hear, "you can mess up; you just can't lie about it." So many students work hard through law school and get shut down at the bar application for being less than honest. These folks keep our ranks clean. They do us a service. And if they ever get lax, the public and Courts will come up with a plan that does not allow us to self-govern. Don't hide anything. Keep good records. The bar will want to see everything. In fact, you should have an attorney to help you with such questions through law school. Many of us will help.
You will usually need an attorney to help you. If you can't afford an attorney, when the case domestic violence case comes up for the next hearing, get with the prosecutor, make sure she knows you are going into law school. She will know how to help you. You will need to be doing a few things to show the prosecutor and court you are serious about keeping your record clean.
Go to church every Sunday and be sure to keep a bulletin to prove you were there. Not 10 times a week. Just go at least once a week and get proof you were there. And don't miss church.
Go into counseling. Ordinarily cases like these have an element of alcohol or drugs. Make sure you do not have such issues. Seriously, go get help! And be able to show the prosecutor proof. Get off alcohol and drugs if you have such issues. In Arkansas, we have the JLAP. Even law students have access to get help. Many lawyers suffer from substance abuse issues. Such issues will cause nothing but trouble. Stay away from this.
There is probably a no contact order against you and your boyfriend that you are violating. I hope not.
Have no more arrests, etc. Get rid of people who bring you down. You are going to be a lawyer. The most ethical bunch of folks on the planet. We give our lives for others and can never un-see the horrors of life. We see the best and worst of people. You can't do that unless you have a clean, caring heart.
You need an attorney to guide you. What seems reasonable may turn out to be a real mess. Fees are anywhere from $2500 to $7000. Pay at least $3500 and make sure the lawyer will answer your phone. All my clients have my cell phone and can call nights, days, weekends, and holidays. Cases like this require regular interaction with the lawyer.
There are a lot more concerns about your case. Thanks for your inquiry. Good luck.
A: Seems like you would receive better treatment saving a life. When you are on parole, any law enforcement officer may search you, your home, your car, etc. A few years ago, I took the issue of who may search a person to the Arkansas Supreme Court after my client was searched by some police officers at a traffic stop.
My client signed documents before being released that, "you must allow your PAROLE OFFICER to search you upon request." My view was that it was the POLICE who were searching. The parole officer was not on the scene.
The Arkansas Supreme Court denied the appeal. So now, the police and any other law enforcement officer may search you. This is how the cops were able to search your apartment. So let's answer your question.
You must have a lawyer for the case. Public Defenders are great folk. They are too busy helping you to care for your family or spend much time with you. Still, they are clearly capable people. I would go with them for the most part. It doesn't sound like there will be a jury trial. I would get your PD recommendation and if you don't like it, then look for a private attorney.
The PD will cost you a few hundred dollars and should be able to keep you out of jail. A private attorney will spend a lot of time with you going over every option but it is unlikely you would have the charges dismissed. You would need to pay at least $7500 also. A lawyer who charges less is not going to have the experience.
With all that said, and without benefit of reviewing your file, I would recommend you request the Public Defender to take your case. If you don't like what they say, consider a private attorney.