Blog Posts in 2010

  • New California Criminal Laws which go into effect as of January 1, 2011

    || 20-Dec-2010

    Possession of Less Than an Ounce of Marijuana is Now an Infraction: Under current California law, the possession of any amount of marijuana is charged as a criminal misdemeanor. As of January 1, 2011, possession of less than an ounce will be considered an infraction, punishable by not more than a $100 fine. Medical Marijuana Dispensary Restrictions: Medical marijuana collectives may not operate ...
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  • Man Indicted After In-Flight Sexual Assault

    || 2-Dec-2010

    The crime of Sexual Assault or Abuse is usually a state crime, however, if it occurs within federal jurisdiction, such as aboard an in-flight aircraft, it is a federal offense. 61-year-old Ranchhodbhai Lakha is now in federal custody on charges he fondled a fellow plane passenger while she was sleeping. Lakha was on a Delta flight from Texas to Georgia, when he allegedly assaulted the 20 year-old ...
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  • 24-year-old man was recently arrested by Federal Agents on suspicion of using the Internet to induce a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity. The defendant had allegedly posed as a 19-year-old boy online in order to contact and arrange a meeting to engage in illegal sexual acts with a 14-year-old girl. Detectives began investigating the case in August, when they learned through a tip that ...
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  • For the first time in 35 years, the penalties for the use of non-medical marijuana have been reduced. On September 30 th, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill that downgrades the possession of one ounce or less of marijuana from a criminal misdemeanor to an infraction. This means that instead of having to make a court appearance and suffering a criminal arrest record, those found in ...
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  • Andrew Thomas Gallo was found guilty of murder in connection with the April 9, 2009, DUI crash that killed Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart and two of his friends. Gallo was driving a mini-van at 65 miles-per-hour in a 35 miles-per-hour zone while drunk and carrying a suspended license. After striking the car, Gallo fled on foot and was caught less than a half-hour later. Gallo was still on probation ...
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  • 24-year-old Alejandro Lorenzo Contreras was recently convicted of Possessing Child Pornography and Annoying and Molesting a 12-year-old girl at a local public library. Contreras pursued three girls into and around the Stanton library. He then followed them outside and asked one of them to take a cell phone photo of herself and send it to his cell phone. The girl told authorities, leading to ...
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  • Woman pleads guilty to having sex with a 15-year-old boy

    || 28-Oct-2010

    A 38-year-old Santa Ana woman, Debra Ayala Tapia, was sentenced to one year in jail after accepting a plea deal and admitting guilt to having a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old boy and giving birth to his child. Originally, Tapia had been charged with two felony counts of lewd acts upon a child, two felony counts of oral copulation of a minor under 16, and two felony counts of unlawful ...
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  • Paris Hilton is Sentenced for Cocaine Possession in Vegas

    || 21-Oct-2010

    Last month, Paris Hilton was riding in her boyfriend's Cadillac Escalade when he was pulled over by Las Vegas police. While waiting, Hilton opened her purse to retrieve lip balm, inadvertently displaying a small amount of cocaine to the police officer standing next to her. Hilton was originally charged with Felony Cocaine Possession, which has a maximum of four years in prison under Nevada law. ...
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  • In California, the laws concerning marijuana possession and cultivation can be confusing. Even with a prescription for medical marijuana, one can be arrested and charged with a crime. Recently, the Los Angeles Police Department launched a 10-month investigation, enlisting the California Air National Guard to search for illicit marijuana growers and aerially photograph any suspicious land in the ...
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  • Theft Crimes: Robbery, Burglary and Theft

    || 16-Sep-2010

    To most people, the crimes of robbery, burglary and theft sound like they could be interchangeable. While these three offenses do have some similar aspects, under California law the elements of each crime and the potential penalties are vastly different. Robbery is defined as a theft offense which involves using physical force, fear, threats, intimidation or other violent means of obtaining ...
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  • What are the Differences between Kidnapping and False Imprisonment

    || 23-Aug-2010

    Although "kidnapping" and "false imprisonment" may sound similar, they are considered separate crimes under California law. Kidnapping is a felony offense and refers to the taking away, or movement of another person against their will by force or any other means of instilling fear in the victim. In California, the punishment for a conviction of kidnapping can be anywhere from three to eight years ...
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  • Los Angeles Child Abuse Case

    || 4-Aug-2010

    Cheryl Ann Stuart, 25, and 31-year-old Mario Alberto Colin, have been arrested and charged with two felony counts each of child abuse and corporal injury to a child. Police were called to the Santa Ana home where Stuart was renting a room by the landlord, who hadn't seen the children, ages 2 1/2 and 5, outside for some time. Stuart admitted that she hit her sons but didn't think she was striking ...
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  • Teen Accused of Two Murders Found Not Guilty

    || 3-Aug-2010

    A Los Angeles jury has acquitted 17-year-old Angel Sosa of fatally shooting a man and his 12-year-old son at a high school graduation party on June 21, 2008. Angel was just 15 years of age at the time of the shooting and was tried as an adult for two murder charges. Prosecutors said that witnesses identified Angel Sosa as the gunman who fired into a crowd of party guests during a dispute in ...
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  • Sex Tape Hacker Charged with Extortion

    || 2-Aug-2010

    Federal agents have arrested a man who allegedly hacked into more than 100 computers to obtain personal data to extort sexually explicit videos from women and teenage girls in exchange for keeping their information private. 31-year-old Luis Mijangos allegedly searched computers for sexual or intimate images to blackmail victims into making videos for him. Prosecutors say he also was able to ...
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  • Supreme Court Modifies Miranda Protections

    || 30-Jul-2010

    The United States Supreme Court recently expanded the limits on the famous Miranda rights for criminal suspects. In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court decided that for a suspect to invoke their Miranda rights, they must now verbally assert their right to remain silent in order to stop police interrogations. This change in the law was triggered by the case of Berghuis v. Thompkins. Van Chester ...
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