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What’s the Best Strategy for Defending a Second-Strike Case?

Posted by Ronald D. Hedding | May 12, 2023

Those with a prior strike on their record in California pick up a new strike, whether serious or violent. They will face a sentence potentially doubled, depending on the particular crime.

What’s the Best Strategy for Defending a Second-Strike Case?

The low term for that crime, the midterm, or the high term all become doubled if the person is found guilty or pleads guilty to the crime and has to admit a prior strike. So you want to know how to deal with these types of things. 

First and foremost, we have to look at the underlying offense that you're charged with.  The more serious that offense is, the more likely you'll end up with a second strike situation and a lengthy prison sentence, such as the following:

  • We have to look at the prior strike,
  • The judge and the prosecutor will evaluate how serious that case is,
  • How long ago it occurred?
  • What type of sentence you got in that case?

These are the factors they will use to determine whether or not they will try to use that strike against you to double your sentence. 

Can You Avoid a Strike Being Filed?

There are things that a criminal defense attorney can do to help you in these second-strike situations.  One thing would be to try to convince the prosecutors to either not file the strike against you or to strike the strike. 

They've got the authority to do that.  If they're willing to do that as part of a negotiation, you can try to work your case out if they have a good case against you without having to admit the strike.

The second way to get rid of the strike prior is to file a Romero motion with the judge and try to convince the judge to strike the strike, and then you can either fight the case or you can work out some deal with the strike stricken where your sentence is not doubled.

Review of Criminal History

The judge will be looking at some things in determining whether or not to strike the strike are your prior criminal history. 

The whole point of the three-strikes law is to put away career offenders. Those who continue to offend repeatedly will feel the teeth of the strict three-strikes law as they get sent to prison for lengthy prison terms.

They'll also look at your prior strike and see the type of crime and how old it is. Then, finally, they will look at your current crime in determining whether or not you should be granted the Romero motion and not have to get your sentence doubled up and go to prison.

If you or a loved one is charged with a second strike case, you need to hire a seasoned criminal defense attorney with experience dealing with these cases.

I've been handling second-strike cases pursuant to the three-strikes law since that law was enacted in the early 1990s. So if you need the best, pick up the phone now.  Ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding.

About the Author

Ronald D. Hedding

What Makes Ronald Hedding Uniquely Qualified To Represent You? I've been practicing criminal defense for almost 30 years and have handled thousands of cases, including all types of state and federal sex crime cases. All consultations are discreet and confidential.