Restitution to Parents of Children Who Are Sexually Abused?

Yes is the answer to the rhetorical question posed in the title to this blog post.  In a recently decided First Appellate District Court case, the appellate court affirmed the award of approximately $20,000 for psychological counseling for the mom of an eight-year-old girl who was sexually abused.  The appellate court reasoned that restitution awards should be broadly construed, as the trial court judge did.  To read a summary of this recent ruling, please click on the following link –

Don’t Forget About Restitution If Seeking Expungement

The Achilles heel to expungement is unpaid restitution.  If one is seeking expungement and calls our office, we are always deliberate about addressing this issue if restitution was ordered paid to a victim or city as investigation expenses.  The following link connects to a Fourth Appellate District Court opinion in which unpaid restitution held back a woman convicted of welfare fraud from having multiple welfare fraud convictions expunged.  To read about this ruling, please click on the following link –

Mental Health Diversion After a Trial & Jury Verdict?

As judges and attorneys become more and more knowledgeable about mental health diversion, there has arisen a series of appellate court decisions that both promote and restrict this program.  The following case out of San Diego Superior Court and the Fourth Appellate District promotes its application even after a jury verdict and before a final verdict, so for defense attorneys, it is considered quite favorable.  Other appellate court decisions more recently published are not so enthusiastic about the program.  However, to read a short summary of the Jenkins case, please click on the following link –

The Forfeiture-by-Wrongdoing Exception to the 6th Amendment?

Under the Sixth Amendment, an accused has the right to confront his or her accuser unless that person is legally found to be unavailable.  In the following case summary, a man alleged a Sixth Amendment violation although he threatened the witness that if she came to court, she would face danger from him or someone he directed to find her.  So the witness did not come to court.  May defendant still claim a Sixth Amendment violation?  To read the appellate court’s answer to this, please click on the following link –

Is Consent to a Blood Test Illegal If Jail Threatened?

The answer to the rhetorical question involving DUI appears to be yes if blood is drawn without the suspect’s consent and without a warrant, as suggested in a recent Second Appellate District Court case involving a Los Angeles DUI applying U.S. Supreme Court precedent from Birchfield v. North Dakota (2016) 579 U.S. ___, 136 S. Ct. 2160. To California DUI attorneys, this may be a great weapon in one’s arsenal to defend a client in a DUI. To read more about this recent appellate court opinion, please click on the following link –

When May Police Search a Cellphone in an Inventory Search?

As one court aptly noted, the “’inventory search banner is often raised in an after-the-fact attempt to justify’ a simple investigative search for incriminating evidence.” Consequently, court have established rather strict requirements for the admission of incriminating evidence found during a relatively administrative inventory search. Does the search of the contents of a cell phone meet such requirements? One would have to strain to see how. However, to see how the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals admitted the contents of a cell phone from an inventory search, please click on the following link –