Hedding Law Firm

Category: Criminal Defense

Is it a Crime to Lie to a Police Officer?

It’s an interesting question because sometimes it is a crime to lie to the police and other times it’s not a crime to lie to the police.  The bottom line is, if the police are trying to question you for some sort of a crime they might think you’re involved with, you shouldn’t be talking to them. Any attorney is going to tell you that.  You’re not going to help yourself.  You’re not going to out-smart the police.  At best, you’re going to give you side of the story which will give the prosecutors a chance to use it against… Read More

What is the Purpose of a California Pitchess Motion?

When you have a situation where law enforcement are the primary witnesses or law enforcement has done something illegal related to a search, taking a statement or anything the defendant can use to file a motion to try to get the case dismissed or mitigated, you want to think about doing what’s called a “Pitchess Motion.” Police Officer Personnel Records Showing a Pattern of Misconduct What it is, is you’re trying to get the background information on the police officers associated with the case and you’re looking for stuff like prior false police reports that they might have filed, lying… Read More

Should You Take a Plea Deal for Your Los Angeles Criminal Case?

This is one of the biggest burning questions on people’s mind if they’re charged with a crime anywhere in California.  This is sometimes not the easiest question to answer and you’re going to want an answer with the guidance of a season California criminal defense attorney who knows you, your case, your criminal record and knows whether or not if you go to jury trial, you can win. But that’s really the evaluation, isn’t it?  I mean, you have two choices in general in criminal cases when they’re filed against you.  You either fight the case.  Take it to a… Read More

Getting Charges Dismissed in Los Angeles with No Conviction

There are actually a lot of different ways in Los Angeles county criminal courts when someone’s charged with a criminal case to get the case dismissed.  Obviously, the one that you would probably think of off the top of your head is to go to trial and if the client is found not-guilty then the case is dismissed. Sometimes, through investigation and hard work and the right case, obviously, you can convince the prosecutors to dismiss the case after they file it, assuming they have got some good stuff that they didn’t consider at the time they filed it. You… Read More

Right to a Speedy Trial in a California Criminal Case

This issue comes up all the time.  I’ve been doing criminal defense now for twenty-five years and a lot of times, for various reasons, I will be arguing that the judge or the prosecutor, or both, are violating my client’s speedy trial right.  And it doesn’t just have to do with a trial.  It could also have to do with the preliminary hearing. Defendants who have been charged a criminal offense in Los Angeles have a right to a speedy trial that is guaranteed by both the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution and the California Constitution. Our California… Read More

Purposes of a Preliminary Hearing in Los Angeles Criminal Cases

This is a good question about why do they do preliminary hearings?  What are they used for?  What’s the significance to a criminal case?  The reality is that a preliminary hearing is only something that is available and utilized if the person is charged with a felony. Prosecutors Must Meet Certain Elements of the Crime You’re not entitled to a preliminary hearing if you’re charged with a misdemeanor.  Basically, what this is, it’s the government — the prosecutors having to meet certain elements and satisfy the prima facia case when they’ve got somebody charged with different crimes. It really amounts… Read More

Criminal Court Process in California

A lot of people that haven’t been charged with a crime in California wonder what is the criminal procedure is all about?  How does it work?  Am I looking at jail time?  Am I going to have a record for the rest of my life?  How is this going to impact me, my family, my future and my career? These are all great questions; but it’s scary, because when somebody gets arrested they lose control.  They don’t know what’s going to happen and they’re looking for answers. This section is meant to give you some of those answers.  Obviously, your… Read More

How to Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney in Today’s Modern Society

This is a good question because a lot of people are actually going to the internet to hire their attorney.  They can do a very broad search.  They can find out about the attorney’s reviews.  They can look at their credentials.  They can look at how long they have been practicing.  They can check the State Bar of California and see whether they’re a member in good standing. I am a top-rated criminal lawyer in Los Angeles. There’s all sorts of things.  And they can do it very quickly.  So, that’s what is so impressive about the internet. What I’m… Read More

Reasonable Doubt in a Criminal Case in California

The bottom line is that the prosecutors in any case in Los Angeles, whether it be a misdemeanor or a felony, have to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.  Now trying to figure out exactly what that means is not always easy.  There’s a jury instruction — and the jury instructions that are used in Los Angeles are the CALCRIM 103 – Reasonable Doubt.  It basically says, the Judge tells the jury, I will now explain the presumption of innocence and the People’s burden of proof. The defendant has pleaded not guilty to the charges.  The fact that a… Read More

Can Co-Defendant’s Statements Be Used Against Other Co-Defendants in Criminal Cases?

This is a big question because a lot of times — especially in felony cases; not as much in misdemeanor cases — there’s a group of people arrested who are allegedly involved in a criminal conspiracy or other criminally-related activity and the police will separate all the people and take statements from them, and a lot times some of the defendants actually make statements that not only hurt themselves — incriminate themselves — they also incriminate their co-defendants and say stuff that causes their co-defendants to be put in a bad position.  That statement, if used against the co-defendant, would… Read More