General Topics

A Look at the Number of Private Prisons Across the U.S.

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The existence of private prisons is a highly debated subject in the U.S. today. And while we are not going to get into the specifics of the debate, we did want to provide more insight into the presence of private prisons around the country. To do that, we conducted research to learn where the highest number of private prisons are located and what percentage of each state’s prisoner population is held in them. Read on to learn more about what we found.  A Short History of Private Prisons in the U.S.  Before we get started, we wanted to provide a short history...

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Most Popular True Crime Documentary By State

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These are the Most Searched True Crime Documentaries in Every StateThere are new true crime documentaries premiering on networks like Netflix, HBO, and Hulu all the time. Documentaries like ‘Making a Murderer’ and ‘Abducted in Plain Sight’ have viewers buzzing. We all have our own opinions on who really killed Teresa Halbach or why Jan Broberg parents continued to let her see Robert Berchtold, but the point is, these documentaries have people discussing the details of the cases and googling facts to determine their opinion on who’s actually guilty in these cases. As criminal defense attorneys, we find all these...

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Sentencing Disparities in Bay Area Counties

Major sentencing disparities can occur in different Bay Area Counties. What a judge sentences an individual to in one county could be vastly different than from what a judge sentences an individual to in another county. The differences in sentencing have a vast monetary effect on both county and California state resources.Whatever affects county and state resources invariably affects taxpayers. It costs more to incarcerate an individual in California than it does in any other state. How does this happen? How can two counties in the same area providesentencing disparities for the same crime?  Two Identical Crime Defendants – Two...

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Know Your Rights when speaking to the Police

Nobody believes they’ll ever get arrested. Most don’t even believe a police officer will ever pull them over. It happens, though, which is why you must be prepared even if, fingers crossed, it never happens to you.Do you know your rights, what to say, and what not to say when a police officer approaches you? Check out what to do if this happens to you.What to Do if a Police Officer Approaches YouKeep the following in mind:Stay calm and stay put Remember to SC and SP, Stay Calm and Stay Put. Don’t start arguing with the officer. Don’t say anything...

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Pretrial Cash Bail (SB-10) Eliminated in the State of California

Judges Bail SB-10

People arrested in the state of California will see a dramatic shift in the terms of their detainment pending trial under a new law set to take effect in October 2019.The recently passed Senate Bill 10, or the California Money Bail Reform Act, eliminates cash bond in favor of nonmonetary bail conditions. Gov. Edmund Brown signed the bill in late August.“Today, California reforms its bail system so that rich and poor alike are treated fairly,” Brown said.The bill was intended to keep low-income defendants from spending a disproportionate amount of time behind bars. Currently, almost two-thirds of the inmates in...

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Flaws in Forensic Evidence

The office of the Santa Clara District Attorney’s “Conviction Integrity Unit” is going through the arduous effort of scanning previously sentenced individuals for details where microscopic hairs have been utilized in a guilty verdict. These tiny pieces have been used to convict persons from everything including rapes, child molestations, kidnappings, and murders. What has prompted this investigation is the recent overturning of the kidnap and sexual assault by Glen Payne, now freed, who served fifteen years for the crime.The case involved a two-year old child. The girl was found missing from her home in May 1987, and later located covered...

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Two Criminal Trials for The Price of One – Budgetary Concerns and Criminal Justice in Santa Clara

Two Criminal Trials for The Price of One – Budgetary Concerns and Criminal Justice in Santa ClaraSanta Clara District Attorney Jeff Rosen’s analysis of the two-jury criminal trials in the Mercury news lacks merit.  To begin with, Criminal trials are difficult and require a constant focus that is, at times, difficult with one jury.  The idea that the criminal justice system can and should save resources by grouping defendants together and having two or more juries hear parts of the testimony presented is absurd.  While the rules allow for one of the juries to be removed in the event that...

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