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Police Use of GPS on Drug Dealer’s Car Without a Warrant Held Improper; Evidence From it Thrown Out.

What exactly is a search?  If an officer watches someone walking down a public street, is that a search?  If the officer takes a photograph of someone in public, is that a seizure of evidence of the person’s whereabouts?  What if the police place a GPS tracking device on a suspected drug dealer’s car, without his knowledge, and monitor his travels on public roads?  Is that a lawful search and seizure?  Click on the following link to find out answers to these questions –

Drug Diversion Programs – Prop 36 Versus PC 1000.

Who is eligible for a drug diversion program?  Granted, most folks who are arrested for possession of drugs, if they are for their own use, need treatment more than jail.  However, not everyone qualifies.  Moreover, what is the difference between Prop 36 and PC 1000?  Click on the short article that follows to read answers to these questions -

Plea Bargaining by the Judge is Illegal – It is not an Indicated Sentence.

It is not uncommon for judges to want to resolve cases.  It clears up their calendar and prevents expensive trials that really are a waste of everyone’s time, especially those of jurors.  Therefore, sometimes a judge will try to help the case along.  Click on the link that follows to read an article about a case wherein the judge went too far –


Conviction Reversed for District Attorney Withholding Evidence.

The Due Process claim of our Constitution has been interpreted to mean an accused is entitled to all documents that the prosecution has concerning the case, except for certain very narrow exceptions.  The job of a district attorney, moreover, is not to gain convictions.  It is to see that there is a proper resolution of the case according to law. Sometimes, however, prosecutors lose sight of this duty and withhold documents to gain a conviction.  Click on the attached article to read about a district attorney who did just this -

Conviction Reversed for Mailing Criminal Threats.

Charged with terrorist threats (criminal threats)?  In state court in California, it is defined by Penal Code § 422.  In federal court, it is defined by 18 U.S.C. § 876 (a) if the threat is mailed.  In both situations, the threat must be directed to a person.  Can it be a threat to a corporation, i.e. McDonald’s or Nike?  Click on the following summary of a federal case to read about this aspect of the offense -

Why Is a “Wet Reckless” Better Than a DUI?

There is a saying that a pig with lipstick is still a pig.  A DUI reduced to a wet reckless, however, is not still a DUI.  One who pleads to a wet reckless, under Vehicle Code § 23103, avoids the consequence of being saddled with an ignition interlock device (IID) if the case is in Los Angeles County.  The DUI charges are also dismissed.  But a wet reckless can certainly feel like dating a pig with lipstick.  Click on the attached article to read more –

An Admission is Inadmissible if After an Illegal Search as the Fruit of a Poisonous Tree

If police break into someone’s house without a warrant and no exception applies to excuse the general requirement for a warrant, are the items found admissible in court?  Is an admission thereafter by the home owner that he was cooking meth admissible?  Click on the link here to read a short article summarizing a recent case that answers these questions –


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