I blindly initialed and signed my change of plea form…can I withdraw my guilty plea? People v. Novoa

I blindly initialed and signed my change of plea form…can I withdraw my guilty plea? People v. Novoa

How must an attorney advise a criminal Defendant about immigration? Or specifically in this case People v. Novoa* from 4/22/19, if a Defense Attorney just crossed out certain parts of a change of plea form and has no records of actually advising a Defendant about immigration consequences of the plea, is that ineffective assistance of counsel? Such that would allow the Defendant to withdraw his guilty plea? The facts in Novoa: Defendant pled...

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Are the Prosecutor’s jury selection notes discoverable? People v. Superior Court (Jones)

Are the Prosecutor’s jury selection notes discoverable? People v. Superior Court (Jones)

The facts of Jones: During jury selection, the People used peremptory challenges to excuse 3 jurors who are African American. Defense made a Batson/Wheeler challenge that the Prosecutor was improperly striking jurors based on race. When a party makes a Batson/Wheeler challenge, the Court must step through this framework: Did the defendant must make out a prima facie case that there is an inference of a discriminatory purpose from the...

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Is a police officer approaching a car parked lawfully a detention? People v. Kidd

Is a police officer approaching a car parked lawfully a detention? People v. Kidd

Well, it depends on the facts…but People v. Kidd gives more guidance (from the Court of Appeals of California, Fourth District, Division Two, certified for publication on June 12, 2019, 2019 Cal. App. LEXIS 527). Let’s start with the law about whether police coming up to you is a detention: “As long as a reasonable person would feel free to disregard the police and go about his or her business, the encounter is consensual and no reasonable...

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Must a Court take an acquittal if Jurors decide against a greater included crime but are hung on a lesser?

Must a Court take an acquittal if Jurors decide against a greater included crime but are hung on a lesser?

If Jurors hang on a lesser included offense, must the Court require a verdict of acquittal on the greater charged crime(s)? The quick answer from this California Supreme Court People v. Aranda (filed April 4, 2019) decision is the Court must take the acquittal on the greater crime and then the Court may declare a mistrial to the lesser offenses. There’s a few rules and understandings that come out of Aranda. First, the Court confirms Stone v....

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Does mental diversion (Penal Code 1001.36) apply retroactively?

Does mental diversion (Penal Code 1001.36) apply retroactively?

We’re starting to get case law decisions from Appellate Courts about the Mental Health Diversion Law (California Penal Code 1001.36, from AB 1810) Governor Brown inked this bill late June 2018 and it became effective June 27, 2018. You can see my blog about that law, although there seem to be some amendments being made to it. One question frequently asked is whether this law will apply only going forward? Or will it apply to older cases....

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