Information on New Criminal Defense Laws in California

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What Does it Mean to Disobey a Police Officer

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Have you disobeyed a police officer in California? Law enforcement officers have the authority to issue lawful orders to a large population to reserve public safety or maintain order during emergencies. If the public was allowed to disregard these orders, it could be challenging for the police to perform their duties. To ensure police achieve their mission to protect and serve, Vehicle Code (VC) 2800 criminalizes refusal or failure to willfully observe legal orders or instructions from a peace officer in uniform. When you disobey lawful orders from an officer, you risk a jail term of half a year if sentenced for the violation. The blog below highlights what it means to disobey an officer to understand your charges if you are arrested for the crime. Legal Definition of Disobeying a Police Officer Defying a police officer means that you failed to obey their orders,... Read More

What is Accessory Before the Fact in California

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Criminal liability in California can extend to anyone who contributes to the offense before or after the offense. Helping or encouraging someone to commit a crime could result in charges for being an accessory before the fact. This means you encouraged the offender to commit the crime or participated in any activities leading up to the offense. If you are charged as an accessory before the fact, contact Los Angeles Criminal Attorney to prepare a defense against these charges. Meanwhile, here's everything you need to know about being an accessory before the fact. Legal Definition of an Accessory Before the Fact You are considered an accessory before the fact if you either help or encourage another person to commit a crime. In California, you are an accessory if you encourage or assist the person before or during the offense. In some states, however, being an accessory... Read More

What Makes an Assault Aggravated?

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Most individuals associate assault with physical aggression against another person. However, in California, that's not the case. Battery, not assault, is the intentional and unlawful use of violence or force against another person. The state of California defines assault as an illegal attempt, along with the present capability, to inflict a violent bodily injury to another person. If found guilty, you could face a $1,000 fine and/or six years behind bars. Because of this, you can be charged with assault without even laying a finger on the alleged victim. A simple fist wave in another person's face would result in assault charges. Assaults can also take the following forms: Threatening to murder someone displaying a deadly firearm or weapon Swinging a fist punch and missing Throwing a stone at somebody and missing Understanding What Aggravating Factors... Read More

What Happens If I Fail To Appear In Court?

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Failing to appear after signing a promise to show up in court, receiving a subpoena to appear, or after a judge orders you back in court at a specific date could result in a warrant for your arrest and additional criminal charges. In some cases, it is treated as contempt of court order, which is a criminal offense punishable by time in jail and court fines. If your reason for failing to appear is reasonable, for instance, you had an emergency and did not purposely fail to appear, your criminal attorney can use that in your defense for the court to drop your charges. In this text, we will discuss in detail how vital appearing in court is and what could happen if you fail to appear. For more information and legal guidance, contact an experienced criminal attorney. The Legal Meaning of Failure to Appear Failure to appear is a legal term referring to a circumstance whereby... Read More

What is an Accessory After the Fact in California?

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It is illegal under California law to help a principal offender escape or avoid a conviction, trial, arrest, or punishment after committing an offense. The law refers to this illegal act as an accessory after the fact, and it is prohibited under CA penal code 32. Although this may not sound as serious as committing the crime itself, accessory after the fact is a crime that can cost you several years behind bars. This blog will give you an in-depth look into what an accessory after the fact in California entails. The Legal Definition of Accessory After the Fact Accessory after the fact occurs when a person aids, conceals, or harbors a principal offender after they have committed a felony offense with the intent to help them avoid punishment, conviction, trial, or arrest, knowing that they have been charged with or have committed a felony. This crime is punished under... Read More

Understanding California's Misdemeanor Diversion Programs

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Thanks to Assembly Bill 3234, enacted on January 1, 2021, California now offers more expansive misdemeanor diversion opportunities. The new law extends diversion eligibility to offenders charged with misdemeanor assault, criminal threats, elder abuse, DUI, and carrying a concealed firearm, among other crimes. Even though some defendants remain ineligible for the alternative sentencing, California's misdemeanor diversion statutes allow more people to avoid serving time and maintain clean criminal records. Some of the offenses that can make you ineligible for alternative sentencing under AB 3234 include sex crimes, stalking, and domestic battery. On the other hand, qualifying for diversion offers numerous benefits, including that defendants do not need to plead guilty in advance. You can still defend yourself in the trial if you fail to complete the diversion program... Read More

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