California’s Three Strikes Law was revised in 2012 to allow “Third Strikers” to petition for resentencing on a third strike conviction when it is neither a violent or serious felony. If resentenced, the indeterminate term of 25 years to life is replaced with a sentence of double the base sentence on the otherwise third strike. However, the individual must not be disqualified from resentencing due to other criteria. Click on the following link to read about one such “Third Striker” who was disqualified and why.
Under the new Prop 36 (not to be confused with the drug diversions program) affecting third strike offenders, a person can apply for resentencing when the offense supporting the indeterminate twenty-five years to life sentence is not serious or violent. The new sentence is “just” the base term doubled. What if the person already served the base term doubled, plus more? Does it credit toward one’s parole period? Click on the following link to find out.
To someone who is not familiar with our criminal justice system here in California, the charge of annoying or molesting a child under 18 may not reveal a sexual context. However, let there be no mistake about it, this charge is not for playing one’s stereo so loud as to annoy or bother a person under age 18. What exactly is required to convict someone under Penal Code § 647.6? What is the punishment? What are the defenses? To read answers to these questions, click on the following link.
What type of transportation is required for one to be convicted of violating Health and Safety Code § 11352? How far is necessary? Can it be on bike? What are the defenses to this charge? Does the transportation have to be for any purpose? What is the punishment if one is convicted of this charge? For answers to these questions, click on the following link.
If you or someone you know has been charged with possession of a controlled substance, the first question you may have is what is the punishment? Is the person going to jail or prison? What are the defenses? What is a Schedule 2 controlled substance? Schedule 1? 3? How is possession defined? To read answers to these questions, click on the following link.
What is drug paraphernalia? A pair of tweezers? A small spoon? Does there need to be more? What is the punishment if convicted of possessing such items? Is it a felony? What are the defenses to such a charge? Click on the following link to find out answers to these questions.
If charged with manufacturing a controlled substance, do the police have to catch you with a lighted bunsen burner as you are mixing substances in a container? Certainly not, as most people understand. But if one is just buying matches, does that mean one is buying items used to manufacture a controlled substance? What type of evidence is required to charge someone with this crime? Click on the following link to find out.
Is joyriding a car equivalent to petty theft under Penal Code § 490.2, as provided in Prop 47? After all, taking a car, even if valued at less than $950, is fundamentally different than taking a book or a shirt. However, one appellate court said such a difference really does not matter. How did it reach this conclusion, making felony joyriding eligible for Prop 47 relief? Click on the following link to find out.
Police work hard to make our cities safe, but often cross the line in trying to catch those who commit crimes. Can a police officer promise leniency or immunity from prosecution to a suspect? After all, the police officer is not the district attorney. Does a trick by police mean the suspect’s confession inadmissible if it was given in reliance on the false promise? Does such a trick mean the case is dismissed? Click on the following link to find out.
What is gross vehicular manslaughter, also called just vehicular manslaughter? What mental state is involved, allegedly? How does it differ from murder, Penal Code § 187? Can the decedent include a passenger or must it be someone outside of the car? What is the punishment? For answers to these questions and many others involving this charge, click on the following link.