California Man Sues LA County Sheriff’s Dept. for Excessive Taser Use

Several news outlets recently published stories about Daniel Johnson, a 26 year old California man who filed a lawsuit against the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office for excessive force.  The complaint alleges that Johnson was inside his parents home, when someone knocked on the door and told him his father was receiving a ticket […]

Girl Scouts Capitalize on Marijuana “Munchies”

We have all seen Girl Scouts in February, going door-to-door, at grocery store doors.  Sometimes their parents sell the cookies at the office.

These days, Girl Scouts are becoming more enterprising.  Last week, a Girl Scout and her mother made headlines when the girl decided to sell cookies outside a medical marijuana dispensary in San Francisco.   Another […]

Revenge Porn – A Legal Twist on a Modern Love Story

Picture this:
In San Jose, CA, boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall in love and begin long-term relationship. Boy and girl share private intimate photos of girl in the course of their relationship. Boy and girl break up.

Boy meets new girl. Boy shows new girl the intimate photos of his ex-girlfriend. New girlfriend gets creative in humiliating […]

Creative Criminal Defense – The Affluenza Argument

Creative Criminal Defense – The Affluenza Argument
Creative Criminal Defense – The Affluenza Argument .

A strange story out of Fort Worth Texas.

Ethan Couch, a 16-year old-boy who was speeding and Driving Under the Influence—with a BAC that was THREE times the legal limit for Texas juveniles—struck and killed 4 people.  Rather than charging him as an […]

You Have the Right to Remain Silent…or Do You?

In June 2013, the United States Supreme Court decided Salinas v. Texas.  The effect of this decision further nips away at our 5th Amendment Constitutional right to remain silent—part of what we all hear on cop TV shows and movies as our “Miranda rights.”

In that case, Mr. Salinas voluntarily went to the police department to clear his name […]

The Effects of a Wrongful Conviction – When the Punishment Doesn’t Fit the Crime

Another success story for the Innocence Project.

In December 2013, former Texas judge Kenneth Anderson – who prosecuted Michael Morton before becoming a judge – served jail time for withholding exonerating evidence from the defense after he had been ordered by a judge to give any such evidence to the defense.

Michael Morton’s story became known in […]

The Major Impact of New Laws Regarding Record Clearances Effective January 1, 2014

I have often been asked if an employer can still learn about a criminal conviction after a defendant has obtained a record clearance. Since the file still remains in the courthouse, I have always said the conviction is still visible if the employer wants to look.

GOOD NEWS FOR 2014—California Labor Code section 432.7 now prohibits both public […]

Operation Second Chance— Clear Your Traffic and Misdemeanor Arrest Warrants for the Holidays

Throughout December 2013, the Santa Clara Sheriff’s Office will work with other local police agencies to implement Operation Second Chance for the holidays.  If you have an outstanding warrant after being charged with a traffic-related or non-violent misdemeanor crime, you can go to one of twelve (12) cooperating Santa Clara County law enforcement agencies […]

‘Tis the Season for Shoplifting?

We all know that the holiday shopping season from Halloween to Christmas is when retail merchants make most of their annual income.  It is also a season when shoplifting increases as people are bombarded with advertising to come out and shop.  People shoplift for many different reasons:

Some people are in need.
Some do it just […]

Criminal “Wobbler” Charges in California Revisited

On October 12, 2013, Governor Jerry Brown vetoed SB 649, which would have given California criminal prosecutors the option to charge criminal possession of heroin or cocaine as misdemeanor, and classify such charges as “wobblers.” Brown believed the timing of this bill was premature, because SB 105, which requires his office to “examine […]