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Court changes charges to felonies for man accused of stabbing

Criminal proceedings can be confusing for those unfamiliar with the Oregon court system. Courts are set up with complex rules of evidence and procedure that often are not explained, either in movies and television or in real life. People must be sure that they have help to guide them through the proceedings so they can ensure their rights are protected and they receive a fair shake.

A recent case in Oregon City provides an example of how quickly things can change during criminal proceedings. In this case, criminal charges against a man were recently upgraded to felonies. Prior to the testimony of a police officer, the man had been charged with weapons, assault and intimidation charges.

According to police, this man stepped onto a city bus and yelled profanity and racial slurs. The man immediately exited the bus and allegedly stabbed a passer-by, witnesses said. He then got on the bus again. At this point, he stabbed a passenger before stabbing the bus driver, according to prosecutors. The man was eventually apprehended by another passenger and by the police.

However, after a new hearing, the judge decided to upgrade the charges to three counts of unlawful use of a weapon and three counts of first-degree assault. These are all felonies. By changing these charges to felonies, the judge has subjected the man to penalties that are much more severe. These new charges may change the man's defense strategy.

In cases like this one, it is important that those charged with felonies understand what they are being charged with, what penalties they could face and how these proceedings can affect their future. Without this knowledge, those facing felony charges may not be able to make informed decisions about how to move forward with their case.

Source: KGW, "Charges increased in Oregon City bus attack," David Krough, Oct. 5, 2012

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