Defending Your Rights and Your Freedom

Defending Your Rights and Your Freedom

If you or your loved one was arrested and charged with a crime in Shreveport-Bossier, or a surrounding area of Louisiana, make sure to seek qualified legal help right away. The Norris Law Group aggressively defends residents and visitors charged with various crimes in the Pelican State.

As a former beauty queen, Attorney Ebonee Norris is no stranger to advocating for the rights of others. The entire team at The Norris Law Group will work hard to help you understand the charges against you, and will help you navigate the often complicated criminal justice system. It is our goal to get the charges against you negotiated, reduced or dropped, and we'll fight to minimize the impact that they have on your life.

We are proud of the reputation that we've built defending people in our community. We are committed problem-solvers who will work to build the best-possible defense on your behalf. Whether you are a Shreveport or Bossier resident, or someone visiting the area, we are here to help you, if you've been accused of a crime.

Ebonee Rhodes Norris is a member of the Shreveport Bar Association, Louisiana State Bar Association, Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and National Bar Association. Call us at 318-771-7000 or contact us online to set up a confidential consultation to discuss your defense today.

Crimes We Handle

Facing criminal charges of any kind, alone, can be frightening. Our team understands the many emotions that you and your family are experiencing, and we are here to provide understanding and compassionate legal counsel for you.

The experienced criminal defense attorneys of The Norris Law Group handle a wide variety of criminal cases, including:

Many of the crimes listed above can be classified as both misdemeanor and felony offenses. Specific aggravating factors can lead to enhanced charges, in some cases.

How We Will Defend You

When you hire us, our attorneys will look at every piece of evidence furnished by the District Attorney. This discovery will allow us to develop the strongest-possible defense on your behalf. Not only will we thoroughly examine and evaluate this evidence, we will also investigate and secure evidence favorable to your case.

We know that not all cases will go to trial. Our attorneys are skilled at negotiating the most favorable outcome on behalf of our clients. We'll negotiate with prosecutors and judges to get you the best deal possible. In many cases, this means that individuals who were initially facing serious jail time could see their sentences dramatically reduced or completely eliminated.

It is our goal to lessen the impact these charges have on your life and your future. We want to see you get a fresh start, and we will fight to make sure that your livelihood and your ability to be with those you love is preserved.

Criminal Penalties in Louisiana

Crimes in Louisiana can be classified as either misdemeanor and felony offenses. Penalties for convictions are usually specific to statutes.

Louisiana Revised Statute § 14:2(4) defines a felony as "any crime for which an offender may be sentenced to death or imprisonment at hard labor." A misdemeanor is defined under Louisiana Revised Statute § 14:2(6) as being any crime other than a felony.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, 86 percent of prison admissions in Louisiana in 2015 were for nonviolent primary offenses, and the 10 most common crimes resulting in prison admission were nonviolent. Louisiana incarcerated nonviolent offenders at twice the rate of South Carolina and almost three times the rate of Florida, despite Louisiana having a similar crime rate.

Pew Trusts reported that Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed "the most comprehensive criminal justice reform in state history", on June 15, 2017, when he signed a bipartisan package of 10 bills that sought to help reduce what had been the nation's highest imprisonment rate by the end of 2018. On June 28, 2018, the Advocate reported that Louisiana's Justice Reinvestment Reforms First Annual Performance Report showed a 20 percent decrease in the number of people imprisoned for nonviolent crimes, a 42 percent decrease in the number of people imprisoned for drug possession, and a 9 percent decrease in the number of people under community supervision by probation and parole officers.

The criminal justice reform measures signed into law in 2017 included a number of important changes for alleged offenders in Louisiana. Judges were finally allowed to shorten or suspend the sentences of defendants convicted of third nonviolent felony offenses, and people convicted of first-time violent crimes punishable by 10 years or more imprisonment.

People convicted of a fourth or subsequent drunk or drugged driving offense or multiple felony offenses can now be sentenced to treatment instead of imprisonment. Mandatory minimum sentences were eliminated for a number of crimes, including arson, theft, and possession of two grams or less of many different controlled substances.

Maximum sentences for many crimes, including using a car without an owner's permission, several drug crimes, and many other nonviolent crimes, were also lowered. The threshold for when a misdemeanor becomes a felony was also raised to $1,000 for theft (which had been $500) and worthless checks (which had been $500).

Alternatives to Imprisonment in Louisiana

Not all people charged with criminal offenses necessarily have to serve jail or prison terms. Judges in Louisiana may have the discretion to impose other possible punishments.

Article 893 of the Louisiana Code of Criminal Procedure allows for the court to suspend the imposition or execution of a criminal sentence for a first, second, or third conviction of a noncapital felony, and place a defendant on probation under the supervision of the Division of Probation and Parole. This is known as a suspended sentence.

The conditions of probation are established under Article 895 of the Louisiana Code of Criminal Procedure. This law provides that a court that places a defendant on probation must require the defendant to refrain from criminal conduct and to pay a supervision fee, as well as impose specific conditions reasonably related to their rehabilitation and require the defendant to do all of the following:

  • Make a full and truthful report at the end of every month.
  • Meet their specified family responsibilities (child support).
  • Report to their probation officer as directed.
  • Allow the probation officer to visit them at their home or elsewhere.
  • Devote themself to an approved employment or occupation.
  • Do not own or possess firearms or other dangerous weapons.
  • Make reasonable reparations or restitution.
  • Avoid "frequenting unlawful or disreputable places or consorting with disreputable persons."
  • Remain within court jurisdiction and obtain the permission of the probation officer before changing address or employment.
  • Devote themself to an approved reading program if they are unable to read the English language.
  • Perform community service work.
  • Submit to available medical, psychiatric, mental health, or substance abuse examination or treatment or both when deemed appropriate and ordered to do so by the probation and parole officer.
  • Agree to searches of their person, property, place of residence, vehicle, or personal effects, or any or all of them, at any time, by the probation or parole officer assigned to them or by any probation or parole officer who is subsequently assigned or directed by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections.

It is important to comply with the terms of your probation, as a violation could result in new charges, as well as the imposition of your original sentence.

Contact Us For A Confidential Consultation

Were you or your loved one arrested or under investigation for any kind of alleged crime in the greater Shreveport Bossier City area? Let the attorneys of The Norris Law Group put their experience to work for you. We are committed to fighting for your rights. We're proud of our extensive track record of success, and we're ready to fight for you.

If you were charged with a crime, you don't have to navigate the criminal justice system alone. Let us help. You can have a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer provide a complete evaluation of your case when you call 318-771-7000 or contact us online to take advantage of a confidential consultation.