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Category: Violent Crime


What Juries Look for to Decide a Verdict in a Murder Case

What do Juries Look for in Determining Guilt or Innocence in a California Penal Code 187 Murder Case? As you might guess, when a jury deliberates whether somebody is guilty of a murder, they’re going to look at the evidence.  They’re going to look at what the prosecutors present.  Are there any eye-witnesses?  Is there any video evidence?  Is there any admissions by the defendant?  Is there any DNA evidence?  Is there any fingerprint evidence? To give readers a better understanding of what exactly juries look for in order to determine whether a defendant is guilty or innocent in a… Read More

Difference Between Murder and Voluntary Manslaughter

What’s the difference? This is a good question because I have found myself over the course of the last twenty-five years in defending murder cases arguing that this was a voluntary manslaughter situation instead of a murder situation.  A lot of times, you’re talking about one big difference — the amount of time that a person is facing in custody if they get convicted of a murder charges versus a voluntary manslaughter charge. For voluntary manslaughter under California Penal Code 192(a), you’re usually looking at a maximum of eleven years in prison; whereas, for  murder charge, under California Penal Code… Read More

Impact of a Great Bodily Injury Allegation on a Criminal Case in California

There’s a lot of great bodily injury allegations being alleged all over Los Angeles county.  These GBI allegations have a lot more teeth than they used to.  Now, if you get hit with a great bodily injury allegation it’s a strike.  It makes the crime that it attaches to, to a violent felony so the person has to serve 85% of that crime. So, great bodily injury, or GBI, is not a crime in and of itself.  It’s an allegation that goes along with a crime.  So, under California Penal Code Section 12022.7, it basically adds an extra three years… Read More

Best Defenses to Attempted Murder Charge in Los Angeles

When someone is charged with attempted murder, they really start looking around and scrambling to try to find an attorney and try to find some solutions to their problem.  A lot of times they’re in custody so it’s left to their family to do the ground work and the leg work for them to figure out what the best way is to handle their attempted murder case in Los Angeles county. The biggest problem with most of the attempted murder cases that I’ve seen over the last twenty-five years of practicing criminal defense in LA is that they’re usually charged… Read More

Why Are There Such Few Good Murder Defense Attorneys In Los Angeles County?

It’s my opinion after having practiced criminal defense for twenty-five years now, worked for the District Attorney’s office, worked for a Superior Court Judge and have my own practice since 1994 — so, I’ve been a defense attorney approximately twenty-five years, just defending people charged with crimes.  In the early 90’s when I first started out, I was actually defending murder cases, so I’ve been defending them since that time and I’ve seen a lot of things. I’ve seen attorneys.  I’ve heard what people have said.  I’ve taken over cases for attorneys who didn’t know what they were doing.  So,… Read More

Justifiable Homicide in California

Defending Against Harm to a Person Within A Home or on a Property in Los Angeles People talk about this all the time.  If somebody brakes into your house and you end up using deadly force against that person, you’d probably be in a good position to have a justifiable homicide if that person was actually killed.  The prosecutors could certainly charge you with a murder if you kill somebody, but if you’ve got a justifiable reason, then you’re able to defend the crime.  Justifiable homicide in California for private citizens is covered under California Penal Code Section 197. But of… Read More

Accident Reconstruction Experts In California Criminal Cases

Mainly when I see accident reconstruction experts being applicable in a criminal case has to do with some sort of a vehicular manslaughter charge related to some driving-related offense. For example, if two people are racing on the streets and a bad accident occurs and somebody dies, those people will probably be charged with vehicular manslaughter, and basically, the prosecutors are going to argue that they were grossly negligent in how they were driving. Therefore, they’re responsible for the death that could subject them to a felony conviction and prison time. Real Case Example Of Vehicular Manslaughter in California So,… Read More

Difference Between Murder And Manslaughter in California

Murder Charges Require Malice Aforethought Murder really has to do with having an intent and having malice. In other words, when somebody becomes angry at another person and they decide to kill that person and they think it out and they plan it and execute the plan and kill the person, now you’re talking first-degree murder. Then there’s the scenario where somebody gets in a quarrel with somebody and all of a sudden, they get that angry and that malice and they decide to kill them very quickly – that would typically be a second-degree murder. The difference between murder… Read More

Violent Crimes In Los Angeles, California

When people talk about violent crimes they are usually talking about it with a negative connotation. Prosecutors and judges alike do not like violent felonies or misdemeanors and they will punish people in kind who commit these types of offenses. So, then you start to ask yourself, okay, so what is considered a violent crime? For purposes of the Three Strikes Law in California, there is a whole list of violent crimes. Examples would obviously be anything involving a person getting injured or some sort of force – whether it be physical or threats of force. For example, a robbery… Read More

A Break Down Of Common Issues In A Domestic Violence Case

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