Delay of Over Four Years before Filing First Degree Murder Charges Not Sufficiently Prejudicial to Merit Dismissal.

The Sixth Amendment Right to a Speedy Trial is an often misunderstood concept.  It has different applicability if the case is a felony as compared to a misdemeanor.  There have also been several recent reported decisions by our state appellate courts that have eroded this right and clarified other areas of the right.  For the latest decision on this topic, click on the following link –


What is Split Sentencing?

Split sentences on county jail felony terms are now presumptively mandatory, as of January 1, 2015.  This is according to a new Rule of Court, Rule 4.415.  It would make the final portion of every county jail felony sentence suspended and release of a defendant mandatory unless the interest of justice warrant denial of this.  What is a split sentence anyways?  Click on the following link to read about this –

What is a Motion for Civil Compromise?

In misdemeanor cases such as vandalism, shoplifting, hit and run and certain others, a defendant can pay the victim for the damages caused in a crime, show the judge proof of the payment and then the judge can dismiss the case.  There is a bit more to it than just this, but the general concept exists.  It is provided for at Penal Code §§ 1377 and 1378.  To learn more about his type of motion, called a Motion for Civil Compromise, click here –

Systematic Child Abuse Over Time Supports Aggravated Mayhem Conviction.

It can be heartbreaking to see the effects possible on a vulnerable child having a parent afflicted by mental illness or a personality defect.  The child certainly did nothing to suffer such treatment.  What if the child is sick and the parents refuse to properly take care of him or her?  Can this be a crime?  Can it be mayhem?  Click on the following case summary to read about such a conviction –

Double Jeopardy Prevents Conviction for Criminal Threats Involving Rottweiler.

Double jeopardy is a household phrase that many people do not understand.  It invokes concepts of civil rights and due process, but what does this Constitutional right really mean?  Sometimes, to understand the concept, an example of an actual case is best to read. Click on the following case to see how this concept was considered and acted upon in a case involving criminal threats and a man with a Rottweiler –

What is a DMV Hearing for a DUI?

Anyone arrested for DUI will lose their actual license and be issued a temporary license by the police.  On this temporary license, on pink paper, is a lot of small print that can be quite confusing.  One thing stated is that the license will automatically expire in 30 days if within 10 days of the arrest one does not contact the DMV to reserve a DMV hearing.  What is a DMV hearing?  What goes on there?  Click on the following article to read answers to these questions –

Conviction by Red Light Camera Upheld on Appeal.

Want to learn how not to challenge a red light camera ticket?  Are photographs hearsay?  How about a video of a car entering an intersection?  With anyone who receives a red light camera ticket, there is a sense of outrage and suspicion tht the photographs and sometimes, video, are not reliable.  For a good lesson on what not to argue, click on the link that follows –

Court Reverses Felony False Impersonation Conviction Involving Use of Birth Certificate.

If one is charged with identity theft (Penal Code § 529), there is usually some type of theft associated with it.  What if one tells police that he is another person and shows something to the police to support the misrepresentation?  Is this identity theft?  Click on the link that follows to learn more about § 529 and for answers to these rhetorical questions –

Granddaughter Guilty of Financial Elder Abuse through Embezzlement and Moving Grandmother Out of Home.

If anyone has experience handling the affairs of an elderly parent or even grandparent that may be living alone, the thought of moving the older person into different accomodations is often considered. Moving the person into a roach-filled mobile home or run-down apartment is hopefully not part of such plans.  What happens if someone does this?  Click on the following article to read about a lady involved in just this type of thing –

Federal Court Rules Collection of DNA from Felony Arrestee is Constitutional

The collection of DNA from a person merely arrested for a crime is certainly problematic insofar as DNA has information not only about a person’s identity, but also about his genetic disposition for mental illness, cancer, diabetes, learning difficulties, etc.  While matching one person’s DNA to the DNA found in a prior crime can resolve previously unsolved crimes, is it constitutional for a state to conduct such a search if it is not necessary to solving a crime for one is arrested?  What if one’s DNA in the pending matter is irrelevant?  Can the police still require such evidence?  Click on the attached article to read answers to these questions –