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June 2014 Archives

Can I get the DUI arrest report for a Vista case?

Generally the DUI arrest report and reports in most criminal cases are not available until after the first Court date and are only released to the attorney of record.  The police reports and any other investigative materials are forwarded after the arrest to the San Diego County District Attorney's Office in Vista for review and issuing.  If there was an accident in the DUI case, the accident portion only of the report is made available by the law enforcement agency usually 5 business days after the incident so that both sides can have it for their insurance companies and to get the insurance information of the other driver or vehicle.  The arrest portion may be mentioned, but is not included.  Victims of crimes may also have access to the reports.

What is a 4th Amendment waiver?

A 4th amendment waiver is short for giving up your right to be searched with or without probable cause.  It is often used in North San Diego County and throughout California and refers to waiving the protections of the 4th amendment of the U.S. Constitution which gives us the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.  The "4th" waiver is commonly imposed as a term of probation or parole in most criminal cases, especially those relating to theft, drugs and weapons.  It allows you to be searched by law enforcement, probation officers or parole officers whether they have a reason or not.  It is helpful from a law enforcement point of view not only for the access it gives to probationers and parolees, but also as a deterrent to being involved in criminal conduct knowing you could be searched at any time.

Is it shoplifting if I forgot to pay for an item at the store?

It is not shoplifting or petty theft if you forgot to pay for an item at the store and walked out with it.  It could become a theft at the point you realize you took the item without paying for it and decide not to return the item or pay for it.  Theft requires a specific intent where you knowingly take an item intending to permanently deprive the owner when you took it or decided to keep it.  Everyone can make a mistake, or forget something is in there cart, especially as you get older.  Intent is not something you can see and say that person had that specific intent, however, it is the circumstances surrounding the taking which may indicate that intent.

Oceanside Internet Prostitution Sting Operation Being Run

Oceanside Police department appears to have begun a Prostitution sting operation recently utilizing an internet website posted on the "Back Page".  Recently, we have received multiple calls from men arrested for California Penal Code (PC) 647(b) for soliciting or agreeing to engage an act of prostituion or sex for money.  This misdemeanor is a crime of moral turpitude and can affect immigration, professional licenses, employment as well as many oither areas of a person's life.

What "Probable Cause" for a DUI Stop is Justiifed in Vista?

Probable cause for a DUI stop in Vista or anywhere in California can be anything from a moving violation, equipment violation, suspicious actions, citizen report or a number of other reasons unrelated to DUI.  The officer must have a reason to pull you over or contact you.  The officer has no idea whether you are under the influence when he first contacts you in most situations, it is during the contact that he notices objective symptoms or things that indicate you may be under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

How does a "Strike Prior" affect a new felony?

A "strike prior" results in mandatory prison, double the term and 80% of the prison time is served for a new non violent new felony with one strike prior.  There is no expiration of a strike offense and they can increase penalties for the rest of your life.  However, if it is older it may be able to be possible to be stricken or dismissed through negotiations.  Judges have the ability to dismiss a stike allegation over the District Attorney's (D.A.) objection if they make certain findings justifying the dismissal.  The law does give a Judge that discretion.  If the felony charge is reduced to a misdemeanor per Penal Code 17(b) by the D.A. or the Judge, then there is no mandatory increased penalties but prior record is usually a consideration in sentencing.

How do Expungements and Certificates of Rehabilitation differ?

Expungements and Certificates of Rehabilitation in California differ in eligibility and what they avieve in cleaning up your criminal record.  You are eligible for an expungement on a most misdemeanors or felonies so long as you did not get a state prison commitment, that means that your sentence included probation on a felony with no more than county jail, or any sentence on a misdemeanor or infraction, with or without probation.  Certificates of Rehabilitation help clean up felony cases where an individual went to state prison and they can also can delete some misdemeanor P.C. 290 sex offense registration requirements.

What if no Criminal charges were filed on my Court date?

If no criminal charges or DUI charges are filed on your Court date, they could still be filed later.  If no charges are filed within 3 Court days and you are in custody, you will be released.  Charges could still be filed as long as they are filed by the D.A. (District Attorney) within the statute of limitations.  The statute of limitations is the law which says any criminal charges must be filed within a specific time frame, depending on the offense, or they can never be filed. Misdemeanors must be filed within 1 year, most felonies must be filed within 3 years.  There are some criminal charges like murder which has no limitation on filing, other serious felonies like child molestation and other serious offenses can be filed many years later.  The California Penal Code can tell you what the various statutes of limitation are for different offenses.

Does "Domestic Violence" involve only husbands and wives?

Domestic violence charges per California Penal Code 273.5 pertains to anyone who willfully inflicts a corporal injury resulting in a traumatic condition on a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or the mother or father of his or her child.  This is a felony and can carry possible custody up to a 4 year prison commit.  The Officer in the field generally arrests anyone for this charge if they have probable cause to believe an injury was inflicted.  Every time an officer is called to a domestic dispute, someone almost always goes to jail. 

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