Law Office of Patrick E. O'Neill, PSC
606-666-2990

Jackson Kentucky Legal Blog

Getting benefits for intellectual disability

About one percent of all Kentucky residents suffer from diagnosable intellectual disability. Of these one percent, 85 out of 100 have a mild intellectual disability, meaning that they can perform many functions in society or on the job, albeit at a slower pace. The remaining 15 percent may have profound problems with handling even the most basic tasks of life.

The Social Security Administration recognizes an intellectual disability as a condition which can qualify a person for Social Security disability benefits.

Marijuana use in the workplace can cause injuries

While the use of marijuana remains illegal in Kentucky, there can be little doubt that it is gaining social and cultural acceptance across the country.

Many other states have legalized marijuana for medical use or have taken steps to minimize criminal penalties for using the drug, and a handful of states have legalized the drug outright.

A DUI conviction can hit a person's wallet hard

Our blog has previously discussed that picking up a DUI conviction in Kentucky, even if it is first offense, can land a person in jail. Moreover, the drunk driving conviction could also mean time on probation and a license suspension.

Finally, like any other criminal conviction, a DUI to some extent is going to be a black mark on a person's professional record. For those who may have professional licenses or who may drive for a living, even one DUI can put a real damper on a person's career.

Child pornography charges can carry severe penalties

While the Internet makes it much quicker and less expensive than ever before to share helpful information, it also makes it faster and easier to share harmful information. Such is the case with child pornography, which is relatively widely distributed online.

As a previous post noted, the viewing or downloading of child pornography, that is, pornography depicting minors, is a felony offense under both Kentucky and federal law. Among other penalties under Kentucky law, a person can be sent to prison for up to five years for each image of child pornography downloaded or viewed.

Special rules apply when suing the government

Generally speaking, at least in recent time, governments and their employees have been held to the same negligence standard as everyone else. In other words, if an employee of the government acts negligently or negligently maintains public property, then victims of any accident can file a personal injury action.

However, Kentucky residents need to proceed cautiously when suing the government, as there are special rules that apply. For a number of historical and legal reasons, a person who does not follow these rules can wind up unable to pursue even an otherwise valid claim for compensation.

Marijuana use on the rise among college students

Although marijuana remains illegal in Kentucky for all reasons, a recent report suggests that many college students are simply not paying attention to these rules. According to the report, over 40% of all college students said that within the previous 12 months they have used some form of marijuana. This number is up from 38% in 2018. Additionally, one in four college students said that they had used in the previous month, which is an increase from about 21%.

Interestingly, the frequent use, that is, more than 20 times a month, is less prevalent among active college students than among young adults who are not attending college. Over one out of 10 young adults not in college admitted to frequent marijuana use, but only 6% of college students admitted to the same. The number suggest that, at least on college campuses, marijuana is a party drug that students may use on the weekends or when class is not in session.

School principal facing child porn charges

A Kentucky principal who was the subject of some controversy about a decade ago has been arrested by Kentucky state authorities and accused of possessing child pornography.

Police said that they began an investigation after someone at the school complained that they had seen the principal distribute an image of child pornography to someone else. In the course of the investigation, police say that they recovered about 15 images of child pornography that they could connect to the principal.

Texting and driving is more prevalent among younger drivers

According to a recent study that was reported through the national online media, drivers from the so-called Millennial generation, that is, those born in the 1980s through the mid-1990s, are more likely to use a cellular phone while driving.

Specifically, 86% of Millennial drivers confessed that they used their smart phones while behind the wheel. By contrast, only 72% of those from Generation X, that is, those born in the mid-1960s through the 1970s, admitted to the same behavior. Only half of so-called Baby Boomers confessed to driving and using a cell phone.

Federal criminal charges present unique challenges

As with all court cases, most criminal charges get filed in the state courts both in the Jackson area and scattered across the rest of Kentucky. Any criminal charge, from a first-time DUI all the way up to a serious sex crime or a murder charge, filed in state court should be taken seriously.

However, there are also many charges which federal authorities decide to prosecute through the United States Courts. These charges often involve illegal conduct which takes place over state lines, like being involved either in a larger drug operation or in unlawful sexual activity over the internet. Crimes against federal officials or institutions with ties to the federal government, including the post office and banks that are backed by federal funds, are also prosecuted in federal courts.

Cell phones are not the only hi-tech cause of distracted driving

There has been much focus on the part of law enforcement and advocacy groups when it comes to texting and driving and using cellular phones. While this concern is of course well-founded since texting and driving causes serious and even fatal accidents, cell phones are not the only cause of distracted driving.

In fact, according to one report, the drawback of many modern in-vehicle information systems, or IVISs, is that they tempt motorists to take their eyes and minds off the road. For those who may have not heard the term, an IVIS is the computer system many modern vehicles use to help people navigate via GPS, make hands-free phone calls, adjust the music and other features.

Law Office of Patrick E. O'Neill, PSC
1029 College Ave
Ste 101
Jackson, KY 41339

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Phone: 606-666-2990