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Challenging Witness Identifications in Criminal Cases

Experiencing a criminal trial as a defendant is a very harrowing experience. Being a defendant is not a common occurrence for many people, so the newness of the procedure is intimidating. Second, pursuant to this country’s tradition of the burden of proof, the...

How Much Force Can Law Enforcement Use during an Arrest?

Being arrested very much strikes fear into the heart of most individuals. Further, it is this fear that is actually a feature, as opposed to a fault, of the American judicial system. By purposefully displaying authority, law enforcement, in fact, intends to strike a...

When Must the State File Criminal Charges?

Being charged with a crime can be a harrowing experience. In many cases, the suspect is confronted with the distinct possibility that his/her life will be turned upside down, even if not convicted. Given that a substantial fine and/or prison time is a possibility, all...

Eric Clanton’s Probation Sentence, was this a fair result?

Being charged with a crime can be a harrowing experience. Once the initial shock of the arrest and arraignment settles, the suspect must now come to terms with the possibility that he/she could face time in prison. In some instances, the criminal justice system does...

Legislators Send More Firearm Restrictions to Governor

Much has been made about the perception of the prevalence of firearms in this country, including firearm-related crime. While statistical analysis and evidence illustrates that crimes committed with firearms have been on a downward trend for the better part of the...

Lawmakers Seek to Erase Thousands of Cannabis-Related Convictions

When California became the sixth state to legalize the recreational use of cannabis, through the passage of Proposition 64 in 2016, the voters of California also assented to the elimination of various cannabis-related crimes. Nevertheless, a question that frequently...

California Headed for Significant Bail Reform

When an individual is arrested on suspicion of committing a crime, part of the process may include the establishment of bail. Generally speaking, bail is a set of pre-trial restrictions imposed on a suspect to ensure that he/she participates in the trial process....

California Considering Significant Juvenile Justice Reform

Since the Clinton Administration, many American criminal justice systems implemented measures to make them appear to be tough on crime. One of these measures has been to increasingly charge juveniles as if they were adults. Consequently, in California, juveniles as...

A New Law on the Mental Health Treatment of Criminal Suspects

Facing prison time is never a happy moment, and it is the major tenet of the American justice system that punishment for a crime, is intended to be a deterrent. However, in some cases, the individual committing the crime may not have the capacity to truly understand...

Rethinking California’s Felony-Murder Rule

In California, as in most states, to be charged with homicide means that the prosecutor has evidence that the defendant “unlawfully killed another human being or fetus with malice aforethought.” Accordingly, this means that the defendant must have been directly...

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