A recent article in “The Appeal” describes California Gang Laws as “normalized racism.” Sadly, this is not hyperbole. The methodology that allows law enforcement to label someone a gang member – often documenting someone as a gang member based on neighborhoods, friendships and families – is notoriously flawed. As described in the article, police use
In January of 2018, the law on bail in California changed dramatically, after the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office appealed setting bail in the case of In re Humphrey and won. In that case, the Court of Appeals ruled that, except for very narrow exceptions, everyone has an absolute right to bail that they can afford.
Proposition 57, passed by California voters in November of 2016, will have important implications for both the adult and juvenile criminal justice systems. Here is a brief summary of the law. For Juveniles Prop 57 requires a judge, not a prosecutor, to decide whether juveniles should be tried in adult court. Previously, prosecutors could “direct
Two recent cases have ruled on the question of what is a reasonable probation condition for a judge to impose on a defendant who has been convicted of a crime and placed on probation. In People v. Moran the California Supreme Court ruled that a probation condition prohibiting the defendant (who had been convicted of
Here are some recent stories in the news related to criminal justice that were somewhat dispiriting. Warrantless Searches In June, the Supreme Court issued an opinion in the case of Utah v. Strieff which further whittles down our Fourth Amendment right to be free from warrantless searches. In a five justice majority opinion by Judge
Jerry Brown is proposing a voter initiative to reintroduce parole hearings and early release. If this new sentencing law is passed, non violent felons will come up for parole once they complete the basic term for their crime. This is a major shift from the “determinate sentencing” law which was put in place (and signed
Last week, the California Supreme Court decided unanimously, in the case of People v. Vargas, that two felony strike convictions stemming from a single act against a single victim may not be considered two separate strikes under the California Three Strikes Law. This is an important judicial clarification of the California Three Strikes Law. The
If you have been arrested for a DUI in California you may have heard the term “wet reckless.” What exactly is a wet reckless and how is it related to a DUI charge? A wet reckless is a type of plea bargain If you have been charged with a DUI (a violation of Vehicle Code 23152),