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Prior Criminal Acts in Criminal Trials Los Angeles

June 18, 2022

During a police investigation in Los Angeles, LAPD and other police will run a “rap sheet” for the person they are investigating. A “rap sheet” is short for “records of arrest and prosecution”. If you have been arrested before, the police will often use it against you. For example, if you have a DUI arrest in Los Angeles before being arrested again, the police will be suspicious that you are drinking and driving in Los Angeles again. If on the other hand, you are being investigated for domestic violence in Los Angeles, the police will run your rap sheet to see if you have been arrested for domestic violence or domestic battery in the past. If your get arrested for […]

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DUI Diversion in California

May 21, 2022

In January of 2021, a misdemeanor judicial diversion statute was passed. It allowed judges to offer a “diversion” of misdemeanor cases, which means that a defendant would be offered to continue his case and as long as he complies with the court orders, the case will get dismissed. This statute can be found in PC 1001.95. With this, the judges suddenly got a lot of power over criminal cases, because no longer a prosecutor has the ultimate control over a misdemeanor case. Penal Code 1001.95 allowed a judge to dismiss a criminal case over the prosecutor’s objection. Only 4 types of cases were ineligible for this judicial diversion: Cases that typically involve sexually related conduct (those that require sex offender […]

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Newly Enacted California Penal Code section 1385 allows a court to dismiss all enhancements including prior DUIs.

February 15, 2022

Under California Bill SB 81, passed in 2022, the judges have a lot more power over the outcome of a criminal case. If you are arrested for a crime in Los Angeles, the prosecutor has complete discretion in filing a criminal case. Yet, once the case is filed, the prosecutor has no discretion to “unilaterally” dismiss the case. Because nolle prosequi is abolished in California, the prosecutor may not unilaterally abandon a prosecution (Pen. Code, § 1386); only the court may dismiss a criminal charge (id., § 1385, subd. (a)).”(Steen v. Appellate Division of Superior Court (2014) This of course means that the court can refuse to dismiss a case even if prosecutor asks. A “‘district attorney can only recommend […]

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Dismiss Your Case: Mental Health Diversion For Criminal Cases Los Angeles

January 23, 2022

California Law Allows Dismissal of Pending Criminal Cases in Several Situations. One of these situations is reserved for someone with mental health issues. That is, a person who has mental health issues can get his case dismissed. This is done through Mental Health Diversion that is found in California Penal Code 1001.36 Under California PC 1001.36 the court can divert many crimes as long as: The defendant suffers from a mental health disorder; The mental health disorder was a significant factor in the commission of the offense. A doctor opines that defendant can get better with treatment The defendnat agrees to the diversion The defendnat will not pose an unreasonble risk or danger to public safety if treated in the […]

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Attorney Answers: Do I have to Go To Court?

November 24, 2021

Rule of Thumb: Most of the time, in Los Angeles criminal cases, you do not have to go to court. However, there are some exceptions to this “rule of thumb”. Fighting a criminal case in Los Angeles can be very time-consuming and some criminal cases last months or even years. It is often advantageous to delay criminal cases to investigate or get a better deal from the prosecutor or a judge. This delay can result in multiple court hearings that many defendants cannot attend because of health, work, or don’t want to appear because their presence does not change anything. This can create a burden and in many states, if you are arrested for any crime, you have to be […]

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Bad Police Conduct: Win Your Los Angeles Criminal Case

April 29, 2021

If you were unjustly arrested for a crime in Los Angeles, you can be entitled to examine personnel records of a police officer who arrested you based on Evidence Code 1043. Defendants have to establish good cause to do that. Good cause is shown when the personnel records are “material” and based on “reasonable belief”. This is done through a motion, named “Pitchess”, after a case with the name Pitchess v. Superior Court. In the Pitchess motion, a defense attorney or a defendant needs to file a declaration and relevant parts of police reports. The declaration must spell out how the personnel file of the police officer can be relevant and ask for previous complaints of other citizens against the […]

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Bails and Bonds – Criminal Cases Los Angeles

January 10, 2021

Overview Of The Bail System After a person is arrested, police (and later the courts) set bail. Bail is an amount of money that an arrested person can give to the police to be released. If the person does not have the money, he will stay in jail or he can hire a bail bondsman (see below). The release is only until the criminal case concludes. Once the criminal case is concluded, the bail is refunded to the arrested person (if paid in full). If the criminal case concluded with a conviction that involves jail time, the bail is returned but the person goes back to jail to complete his jail sentence. EXAMPLE: John is arrested for a DUI with […]

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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIM’S RIGHTS IN CALIFORNIA

January 6, 2021

OVERVIEW OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CRIMES California Domestic Violence crime is one of the most common crimes prosecuted in Los Angeles county. Depending on the city where the arrest took place and the level of injury, Los Angles City Attorney or Los Angeles District Attorney will be prosecuting Los Angeles Domestic Violence Arrest. Los Angeles District Attorney prosecutes Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department’s Arrest, most small cities arrests, and all serious arrests with “felony” type of injury. Los Angeles City Attorney prosecutes misdemeanor level LAPD arrests. Almost any arrest for Los Angeles Domestic Violence will be a felony arrest. That means that police will not decide if the injury is minor and arrest should be for a misdemeanor. Statutory bail for domestic […]

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Dismiss Your Case: Plea Withdrawal

December 16, 2020

BASICS OF PLEA WITHDRAWAL This post deals with a guilty plea that is affecting your life. If you plead guilty and regret it, you can contact our criminal defense attorneys in Los Angeles to evaluate your case. If your rights were violated, you can get a dismissal of your criminal case in Los Angeles. This criminal case dismissal is not an outright dismissal of your criminal case but a conditional dismissal of your criminal case. First, the guilty plea is reversed, then the prosecutor dismisses the case. After plea withdrawal the prosecutor has a right to continue prosecution, however, most do not and instead dismiss criminal cases. Many Los Angeles defendants who are looking for criminal defense attorneys to clean […]

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Dismiss Your DUI or Dismiss Your Criminal Case (Misdemeanor Diversion)

December 15, 2020

Dismissal Under California Penal Code Section 1001.95 The law changes in California once again. Starting January 1, 2021, California Penal Code section 1001.95 will allow judges, over the prosecutor’s objection, to dismiss misdemeanor cases. This law seems to apply to DUI cases and a judge now can dismiss your DUI case. To do that, a judge has to be convinced that diversion is appropriate in your case. Also, you have to agree to continue your case for up to 24 months and do what the judge asks you to do. A judge might ask you to do an alcohol education program, visit a hospital and morgue, do AAs and/or community service. This is called a diversion because the criminal case […]

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