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400 Ouachita Avenue, Hot Springs, Arkansas 71901


Hot Springs Criminal Defense Lawyers Provide Vigorous Defense

Assisting Arkansans accused of traffic offenses, misdemeanors, and felonies

Schnipper, Britton & Stobaugh provides aggressive criminal defense representation to clients facing ordinance violations and criminal charges. Whether you have received a citation for a moving violation, are under investigation, or have been arrested, we respond quickly and decisively to protect your rights and work for a favorable resolution of the matter. John S. Stobaugh, who leads our criminal defense practice, is a former prosecutor for Magnolia, Arkansas, with extensive experience in the District Court of Columbia County, Arkansas. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Southern Arkansas University, teaching courses in Criminal Evidence and Procedure.

Highly professional management of criminal cases

A criminal charge can seriously disrupt your life, putting your reputation and your liberty on the line. Our approach to defense is comprehensive and aggressive to ensure your rights are protected and you get every benefit of constitutional due process. When the facts do not favor a dismissal of charges, we are often able to negotiate lesser charges and/or more lenient sentencing. Although no lawyer can guarantee results, our reputation in the legal community gives us leverage to negotiate in good faith for our clients and secure a positive outcome.

Common charges we manage for our clients include:

  • Assault and battery
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Domestic battery
  • Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
  • Minor in possession of alcohol (MIP)
  • Public intoxication
  • Theft
  • Traffic tickets

We also provide defense against drug charges, especially misdemeanors, such as possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of controlled substance, and marijuana possession. Although such charges are increasingly considered minor, a conviction still carries harsh penalties and can hinder your education and your career. Before you “take a deal” from a prosecutor on a drug charge, make sure you speak to an experienced defense lawyer who has your best interests at heart.

Common crimes and penalties in Arkansas

A misdemeanor is a crime for which an offender can receive up to a year in county jail. Common misdemeanors include reckless driving, prostitution and soliciting prostitution, DWI, and disorderly conduct. Arkansas divides misdemeanors in classes, as follows:

  • Class A misdemeanor — These offenses inflict certain injury to another person or disturb the public good. Maximum sentence cannot exceed one year and a fine of $2,500.
  • Class B misdemeanor — These offenses inflict lesser injury to another person or create less of a disturbance to the public good. Maximum sentence cannot exceed ninety days and a fine of $1,000.
  • Class C misdemeanor — These offenses do little or no harm to another person or to the public. Maximum sentence cannot exceed thirty days and a fine of $500.
  • Unclassified misdemeanor — Carries the maximum sentence and fine defined in the statute.

Felonies are serious crimes that can result in one year or more in state prison. Felonies commonly involve violence against a person or theft of valuable property. Felony classes in Arkansas are as follows:

  • Class Y felony — Minimum sentence of 10 years but no more than 40 years, or life.
  • Class A felony — Minimum sentence of six years but no more than 30 years and a maximum fine of $15,000.
  • Class B felony — Minimum sentence of five years but no more than 20 years and a maximum fine of $15,000.
  • Class C felony — Minimum sentence of three years but no more than 10 years and a maximum fine of $10,000.
  • Class D felony — Maximum sentence not to exceed six years and a maximum fine of $10,000.
  • Unclassified felony — Carries the maximum sentence and fine defined in the statute.

When you are facing serious charges, choose a reliable attorney from a reputable law firm.

Aggressive defense to charges of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)

It is against the laws of the State of Arkansas for a person to drive or to be in actual physical control of a vehicle while intoxicated. You are presumed to be intoxicated if you have a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or more measured in your breath, blood or urine. However, a court can find a driver guilty of DWI for a lower BAC if the prosecution presents other sufficient evidence.

But, just because law enforcement stops and arrests you for DWI, don’t assume they have the evidence to convict you. The authorities have the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that you were intoxicated and were operating or were in actual physical control of the vehicle at the time.

As your DWI lawyer, we conduct an independent investigation to discover all the information the police officer had at the time of the arrest to determine whether the facts support a conviction. Then we design a defense for you to demonstrate the weakness of the state’s proof. If there is any room for doubt, we make sure you get the full benefit.

Contact our criminal defense lawyers in Hot Springs, AR

Hiring a former prosecutor to manage your criminal defense gives your case a distinct advantage. To schedule an appointment with John S. Stobaugh, call Schnipper, Britton & Stobaugh at 501-762-0887 or contact our office online.