Early Warning Signs that Your Partner is Dangerous

Early Warning Signs that Your Partner is Dangerous

One of the things many domestic abuse victims say is that they never thought that it could happen to them. Another comment is that they simply didn’t recognize the early warning signs.

The truth of the matter is that many people don’t know that most relationships have red flags that could serve as important signs that it’s time to get out of the relationship before your partner becomes dangerous. Heeding these early red flags and removing yourself from the relationship early is the best way to preserve your mental and physical health.

Frequent Bursts of Aggressive Behavior

If your partner frequently succumbs to bursts of aggression, particularly if it’s aimed towards you, a pet, or others, treat it as a red flag. Yes, everyone has bad days. Yes, everyone does get angry from time to time, but when that aggression causes a person to punch holes in a wall, kick a dog, make a threat, or grab you, your partner hasn’t learned how to properly manage their anger.

Heed these frequent bouts of aggression and put some distance between yourself and your partner. Explain that until they’ve take a few anger management classes and learned healthy methods for dealing with their anger, you can’t be around them.

Possessiveness

Sure, the fact that your significant other gets jealous when others are around you might seem cute at first. It might even make you feel more loved, but possessiveness can go to far. Signs that your significant other’s jealousy is becoming dangerously possessive include that they think you’re deliberately trying to make them jealous, that the jealously leads to physical and verbal aggression, that they are actively trying to cut you off from your friends and family.

Many abusers demonstrate possessive behavior early in the relationship. In many cases, it’s the first red flag that the relationship will take a dangerous turn. Take the early signs of a possessive nature as an early indicator that you should end the relationship sooner rather than later.

Manipulation

One of the hardest red flags to catch is manipulation. Many abusers are geniuses when it comes to manipulation. They are so good that it can be difficult to realize that you’re being manipulated. If you frequently find yourself doing things you wouldn’t normally want to do, or if you notice that your partner constantly uses emotions, particularly guilt, to change your mind about situations, people you like, and attending events, they’re a manipulator and you should proceed with care.

Pay Attention to How Friends and Family Feel About Your Partner

The odds are good that the people who truly love you the most will be the first to notice that something simply isn’t right about your significant other. If they say that you’re changing, or that they have a bad feeling about your partner, ask them to clarify. While it’s okay for one or two friends to simply not like your new partner, if everyone mentions the same red flags, or if it’s someone who is usually an excellent judge of character, give yourself some time and space to evaluate your relationship and determine if your friends and family are right and that your partner isn’t actually as perfect as you think.

Most people automatically assume that domestic abuse situations always involve an abusive male and a female victim. The truth is that women can be as abusive as men, which is why everyone needs to be mindful of red flags when they are involved in a relationship.

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Trick-or-Treat Safety

Trick-or-Treat Safety

Finally! Halloween is here. Not only does that mean cooler weather, pumpkin spice coffee, and an excuse to snuggle up with a good book rather than going out, kid will tell you that it’s time for free candy.

While kids love trick-or-treating, parents often have mixed feelings about the popular activity. Yes, it’s great to see how excited your kids get each year. The problem is that each year, parents worry how they will keep their child safe while they go from one house to another.

The good news is that there are things you can do to insure trick-or-treat safety while also allowing your children free rein to enjoy the holiday.

Make sure your children are visible, even if they’re out after dark. This isn’t complicated. Simply arm your child with a flashlight, and incorporate some flashing lights and reflective strips into their costume.

Remind your child about the rules of the road. Kids are so excited about being dressed up and obtaining as much free candy as possible, that they can easily forget things like watching for traffic. Before they head out to trick-or-treat it’s really important to remind them that they have to be respectful of motorist who are driving along the streets.

Trick-or-treat as either a family or friend unit. Instead of sending your child out on their own to trick-or-treat, make this an opportunity to make some excellent family memories and go out with your children. If work or life makes it impossible for you to join in the trick-or-treating fun, arrange for your child to go out with friends or other family members. Your child is far safer in a group than they are by themselves. Make sure a responsible adult will be watching over your children the entire time they are trick-or-treating.

Your children will want to eat their candy right away, but encourage them to wait until you get home. Waiting gives you an opportunity to inspect their candy and make sure it hasn’t been tampered with, plus it means your child isn’t potentially stopping in the middle of intersections in order to snatch a sugary treat.

Covid-19 is still a concern so make sure you keep a bottle of hand sanitizer on you and frequently apply it to your child’s hands. Remind them not to touch their face until they’re home and able to thoroughly wash their hands

What steps are you taking to keep your child safe while trick-or-treating this holiday season?

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Crosswalk Safety in California

Crosswalk Safety in California

Walking to work means you don’t have to worry about getting caught in a traffic jam. It’s a great way to build some stamina while also burning a few calories. It also provides you with the means to start slowing down and develop a connection with the world you live in.

Just don’t think that walking to work is safer than driving yourself. A surprising number of California pedestrians are killed annually. According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, there were 972 pedestrian deaths in 2019. Approximately 22% of fatal traffic episodes in California involve a pedestrian. These alarming statistics prompted California lawmakers to pass the “Right-of-Way at Crosswalks” law.

The Right-of-Way law is written up in Code, Section 21950(a). When you read through the formal law, you’ll learn that drivers are legally required to yield to a pedestrian who is strolling through a crosswalk. The law requires that drivers yield to the pedestrian in both marked and unmarked crosswalks. The implementation of the law also requires that drivers use a little additional care when approaching a crosswalk and be on the lookout for pedestrians who may be about to step onto the street. If a pedestrian is stepping onto the street, the driver will have to stop to allow the pedestrian to safely cross the road.

Another issue that’s dealt with in the Right-of-Way law is passing while driving through a crosswalk. Passing while driving through a crosswalk is dangerous for several reasons, including that the passing driver may not see a pedestrian until it’s too late. 

The interesting thing about California’s Right-of-Way law is that it’s designed to protect the rights of both pedestrians and drivers. Drivers do have the right away at crosswalks that are controlled with signals, provided the signal indicates that the driver can go. In this situation, the pedestrians are supposed to yield for drivers. However, drivers do have to wait for slow-moving pedestrians who may be struggling to reach the opposite side in a timely fashion, and the driver must be prepared to take safe and evasive action if a distracted pedestrian fails to notice the sign.

Drivers who are caught failing to adhere to California’s Right-of-Way law will likely receive a traffic citation which will involve a steep fine, points, and the possibility of having the state consider revoking their driving privileges. 

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The Ins and Outs of Medical Malpractice

The Ins and Outs of Medical Malpractice

Mistakes happen.

The problem is that when a member of the medical profession makes a mistake, there is a good chance that a person’s health and/or overall quality of life could be impacted. In some cases, a mistake could result in someone losing their life.

According to the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys (ABPLA,) Medical malpractice, “occurs when a hospital, doctor or other health care professional, through a negligent act or omission, causes an injury to a patient. The negligence might be the result of errors in diagnosis, treatment, aftercare or health management.”

Many of us assume that medical malpractice involves a major medical misdiagnosis or a mistake that happens during surgery. The truth is that many things can be considered medical malpractice, including:

• A failure to provide the legally required level of care a patient requires
• Failing to request proper testing that would lead to an accurate diagnosis
• Ignoring or failing to properly identify important symptoms
• Misdiagnosis
• Performing surgery that isn’t necessary
• Failing to acknowledge a patient’s medical history
• Discharging a patient too soon
• Failing to properly handle and read lab results
• Failure to deliver lab results in a reasonable amount of time
• Surgical mistakes
• Failing to provide sufficient follow-up care
• Failure to educate the patient about proper follow-up care

 
One of the challenges the general population encounters daily is that it’s difficult to know if you’re an actual victim of medical malpractice or if your health simply took an unexpected turn that medical professionals handled to the best of their ability.

Most people find that learning they are the victim of medical malpractice requires two things. The first is careful and accurate records of everything that happens whenever they seek medical care. Keep a log of every single member of personnel you encounter and everything that is said to you. You should also keep a list of tests that are run, medications that are administered, and what your expected response to medications/treatments/surgeries is.

If you suspect that you’ve been a victim of medical malpractice, your next step is getting a second opinion. Make sure you go to a doctor/medical facility that isn’t affiliated with your original provider. If the professionals who provide a second opinion indicate that something seems off with your recovery/treatment/diagnosis, it’s time to contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney who will look at your records and listen to your story before providing you with a plan of action.

A medical malpractice case can take a long time to prove. It will take an even longer time to receive your settlement. To preserve your health, you need to leave the legal stuff in your lawyer’s hands and find a doctor you trust who will accurately and compassionately oversee your health.

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What Happens if You Drive on the Wrong Side of the Road in California

What Happens if You Drive on the Wrong Side of the Road in California

Everyone knows what side of the road you’re supposed to drive on. We also know that there are a few times, such as when we’re passing a slower moving vehicle, that we’re allowed to temporarily move to the other side but that we’re supposed to return to the correct lane as quickly and safely as possible.

What you might not know is that you can get a ticket for driving on the wrong side of the road for making an illegal U-turn, passing in a no-passing zone, or for simply failing to pay attention and drifting into the other lane. Don’t assume that just because the road is divided by solid yellow lines painted on the asphalt rather than a concrete barrier that you can’t be ticketed for driving on the wrong side of the road, you can be.

The issue of driving on the wrong side of the road is addressed in California Vehicle Code Section 21651.

California lawmakers take driving on the wrong side of California roads very seriously. It’s not just a traffic ticket, it’s a misdemeanor. At best you’ll be charged a fine and have 2 points added to your driving record. At worse, you could be charged up to a $10,000 fine and have to spend a year in jail.

If someone is injured or killed because you were driving on the wrong side things can quickly go from bad to worse. In this situation, you could face felony charges. If convicted, your sentence could include up to three years in prison. In cases of death and injury, additional charges such as vehicular manslaughter and reckless endangerment can be added to the original charge. You’ll also likely find yourself named as the defendant in a civil case.

Considering the very serious consequences connected to driving on the wrong side of the road in California, it’s in your best interest to make sure you always keep your vehicle between the yellow lines and the road’s shoulder.

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3 Signs That Your Child is being Victimized by a Bully

3 Signs That Your Child is being Victimized by a Bully

Many of the kids who are returning to school this fall haven’t attended an actual school since March 2020. While this return is good in terms of reconnecting on a social level and regaining some normalcy, it also means that once again, parents are worried about bullies. 

A single bully can do an enormous amount of damage to a child. They hit the child’s self-confidence takes can haunt your child for the rest of their life. In addition to psychological trauma, parents also worry about bullying and physical abuse.

Most kids don’t report bullying problems to their parents. Catching the early warning signs and putting together a plan of action takes a great deal of diligence, observation, and communication.

Pay Attention to Your Child’s Appearance Both Before and After School

The first sign that a child is being bullied is often changes to their clothing and overall appearance at the start of the school day versus the end. Yes, kids trade clothing and jewelry. Yes, kids rip, tear, and stain their clothing via innocent actions. However, if your child is consistently coming home looking bedraggled, or is hiding torn clothing, or constantly has items of clothing missing, it could indicate that your child has attracted a bully.

Look for Bruises, Cuts, and Scrapes

Active kids do get banged up while playing, but kids who are being bullied will often also be covered in cuts and bruises which is why you should ask how your child was injured. Not only should you pay attention to how they received the injury, but also to how they tell you about it. If the bruise was sustained while playing sports, your child will likely have an entire adventure regarding the wound. However, if they are quiet about the injury or try to hide it, it could indicate a bullying problem.

Changes in Personality

Kids’ personalities are in a constant state of flux. They go through stages of intense joy, irritation, and resistance. Sometimes these changes happen at a rapid-fire pace. What isn’t normal is for a happy, bubbly kid who likes school to go through a prolonged period of depression where they no longer want to socialize. It’s also unusual for your child to suddenly lose all interest in activities and friends that they have always loved in the past. 

Sudden and long-term changes often indicate a bullying problem.

If you notice signs that your child’s return to school has resulted in them being bullied, you’ll want to take a proactive stance before the situation leaves your child emotionally or physically scarred.

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How to Get Into Trouble With Airport Security

How to Get Into Trouble With Airport Security

Even though everyone should know that the individuals who work in airport security don’t appreciate a sense of humor, we’re still being bombarded by news stories about people who simply couldn’t behave themselves either at the airport or on the plane and found themselves on the wrong side of airport security. 

You don’t want your name attached to any of these stories so if you’re future plans include flying, it’s a good idea to take some time and review the things that could get you into trouble with airport security.

Joking With Airport Security

Oddly enough, the thing that seems to land the most people in hot water with airport security is joking around. Some people simply can’t stop themselves from saying things that might be funny to most people. The problem is that while the security person you’re talking to might have a sense of humor, their training makes it impossible to play along. Saying the wrong thing, such as commenting about a bomb or having weapons, will result in you getting detained.

It’s in your best interest to keep your jokes to yourself until you’re far from the airport.

Failing to Double Check the Protocols for Flying with Liquids

One of the biggest headaches most people run into is forgetting the rules regarding liquids and tucking something such as mouthwash or a bottle of water into their carry-on bag that doesn’t meet airport regulations. 

The good news is that the airport isn’t telling you that you have to leave all of your liquids behind. You can still bring them with you, but if there are in a container that’s bigger than 3.4 ounces and in a resealable bag, they can’t be in your carry-on luggage. It’s important to note, that the size of the container is important. It doesn’t matter if you’re only transporting an ounce of liquid, if it’s in a full-size container, you must stow it in your checked luggage.

If you do forget and tuck something in your carry-on that doesn’t meet the airport’s requirements for liquid on flights, pay careful attention to how the security team tells you to dispose of the container and follow their instructions to the letter. Don’t get belligerent or obnoxious, simply do what you’re told.

Carrying a Large Amount of Cash

Perhaps one of the strangest things that can get you in trouble with airport security is having a large quantity of cash on you when you enter the airport. The good news is that airport security won’t stop you from flying simply because you have a lot of cash tucked into your pockets, but you should be prepared to answer questions about why you’re using so much cash rather than relying on debit/credit cards while you travel. The existence of the cash will also usually get you flagged for additional security tests so be prepared for the check-in process to take longer than it would if you didn’t have a large amount of cash on you.

Being Obnoxious

Honestly, the biggest thing that gets people into trouble with airport security is their own attitude. The problem is that traveling is already a stressful process and it doesn’t take much to bring out the worst aspects of our personalities. As a result, we can get short-tempered when the airport staff asks us questions that seem too personal or irrelevant. The problem is that the worse your temper gets, the more likely it becomes that airport security will get involved and detain you. 

When you’re flying, it’s in your best interest to take several deep breaths and remain as calm as possible.

The good news is that provided you follow the rules, give yourself plenty of time, and are on your best behavior, you shouldn’t have any trouble with airport security the next time you fly.

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Be Prepared for a Blackout

Be Prepared for a Blackout

Electricity is one of those things you don’t appreciate until you suddenly find yourself in the middle of a blackout. The good news is that there are some things you can do to make sure you’re ready the next time the power goes out, even if the power remains out for several days.

Know Where Your Flashlights Are

Instead of using candles, keep a large supply of flashlights and batteries on hand. Ideally, you should have one flashlight in every single room so you can quickly find them. Make sure that everyone in the house is in habit of putting the flashlights back after each use. The flashlights won’t do you any good during a blackout if you can’t find them.

Stock up on Power Packs for your Electronics

Pick up a few power packs and charge them up. These will come in handy if the power goes out for a long time. They allow you to keep your phone charged so that you can contact someone if there’s an emergency. During a blackout, you should try to conserve your cell phone’s battery by only using it for important calls. Don’t use the power packs to charge anything but the cell phones until the power comes back on.

Keep Some Food Staples in Your Home

Even if you don’t eat things like crackers and other non-perishables very often, it’s not a bad idea to have some stashed in your pantry so you can eat while you wait for the power problem to be resolved. Remember, without power, you’re microwave, hot plates, and electric stoves won’t work so there could be an extended time that you’re unable to cook food, so you need something that can be eaten straight out of the package.

In addition to making sure you have plenty to eat, make sure you also have plenty of bottled water on hand at all times.

Keep your Gas Tanks Full

If you’re in the middle of a city-wide (or larger) blackout, the gas stations won’t have power either. This is why it’s a good idea to always make sure you keep enough gas in your vehicle so that if something does happen in a blackout, you can at least drive to the nearest hospital.

Get a Carbon Monoxide Alarm

An increasing number of people are investing in generators, which allows them to use some things during a blackout. The bad news is that this also increases the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Having a few alarms in your home goes a long way towards keeping you safe if fumes somehow leak into your own home.

The most important thing to remember during a blackout is that staying calm makes the situation easier and that eventually, the power will come back on.

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Consequences of Being Caught with a Fake Id

Consequences of Being Caught with a Fake Id

California has strict laws when it comes to the use of fake IDs. According to California’s Penal Code 470b PC, it’s not technically illegal to have a fake ID in your possession, but the minute you use that fake ID for anything like gaining access to a club or trying to purchase a drink, you’re breaking the law

California’s Penal Code 470b PC states that: “Every person who displays or causes or permits to be displayed or has in his or her possession any driver’s license or identification card of the type enumerated in Section 470a with the intent that the driver’s license or identification card be used to facilitate the commission of any forgery, is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.”

Don’t assume that because you purchased a real driver’s license off an older college student or you simply altered your own license so that your birth year looks different, you can’t be charged with having a fake ID in California. State lawmakers consider all of the following to be fake IDs.

• Altered identification cards/driver’s licenses
• Identification cards/driver’s licenses that have blatantly wrong information
• Forged identification cards/driver’s licenses
• Duplicated identification cards/driver’s licenses
• Reproduced identification cards/driver’s licenses
• Counterfeited identification cards/driver’s licenses

 
One of the interesting things about the way Penal Code 470b PC is written is that there’s no mention that using a fake ID in California is one of the state’s wobbler crimes. Depending on the circumstances, you could be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. It appears that whether to charge it as a felony or misdemeanor is left to the prosecutor’s decision. Factors they’ll consider when determining whether to pursue felony or misdemeanor charges include:

• How the fake ID was used
• Your criminal history
• The circumstances surrounding your arrest
• If you’re willing to disclose how you obtained the fake ID

 
If you’re convicted of misdemeanor use of a fake ID in California, the judge’s sentence could be as minor as community service and probation. It could also be as harsh as serving a year in a county jail and being fined up to $1,000.

If you’re convicted of felony using a fake ID in California, the potential sentence could include:

• Felony probation
• Up to $10,000 in fines
• Sixteen (16) months, two (2) years or three (3) years in state prison

 
There aren’t many defenses that can be used in a fake ID case. The few options available to you include that you didn’t intend to use the ID or that you didn’t realize that the ID was fake.

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California’s Arson Laws

California’s Arson Laws

There’s nothing funny about arson. Not only does arson result in a great deal of property damage, but it can also cause fatalities. In some cases, arson has resulted in wildfires. California’s lawmakers want to discourage everyone from even thinking about arson, which is why they have some pretty severe arson laws.

The issue of arson is dealt with in California’s Penal Code 451 PC. It states that, “a person is guilty of arson when he or she willfully and maliciously sets fire to or burns or causes to be burned or who aids, counsels, or procures the burning of, any structure, forest land, or property.”

We tend to think of arson as a crime that’s committed by a professional Firestarter who is hired by a client who hopes that the fire will result in an insurance payout. The truth is that anyone can commit arson. Some convicted arsonists are simply people who started a fire after they got mad at a spouse, neighbor, or relative. It’s also important to note that arson doesn’t always involve the burning of a large, fancy building. Many cases of arson involve someone setting a shed, car, or tree on fire.

Arson is always a felony charge. The interesting thing about arson in California is that the type of building involved in the case is what determines the type of sentence you receive after your conviction.

• If you set personal property on fire, you could be sentenced to 16 months, two years, or three years in a state prison
• If you burn a public structure or start a forest fire, your sentence could be two, four, or six years in a state prison
• If the fire involved an inhabited structure, the sentence is three, five, or eight years in state prison
• If someone was hurt as a result of the fire you started, your sentence could include five, seven, or nine years in a state prison

 
In most arson cases, arson is only one of the charges involved. It’s not uncommon for an arson case to be involved with assault, insurance fraud, reckless endangerment, and even homicide/manslaughter cases. 

It’s also important to note, that in addition to facing criminal arson charges, your victim could also choose to pursue civil charges.

If you are convicted of arson, it will negatively impact your ability to legally own firearms.

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