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UC San Diego Student Wins $4.1 Million Suit Against DEA

When we see news items concerning the Drug Enforcement Administration, there’s usually a positive spin.  For example, though Californians have been embroiled in a bout with the federal government for some time over the legitimacy of medical marijuana, and its legality (SB 420 & Prop 215) the DEA continues to make busts in the state – without respecting voters’ wishes.  Now, however, Californians can chalk at least one more thing up in the negative column when it comes to this particular federal agency. And it involves a 23-year-old man named Daniel Chong. In April of 2012, the DEA conducted a drug raid...

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Child Prostitution Ring Uncovered in Bay Area (CA Penal Code §647(b))

“Operation Cross Country,” an FBI task force, successfully carried out a nation-wide sweep for prostitution rings last week, rescuing at least 12 children who had been forced into sexual slavery.  FBI officials cited San Francisco as the #1 city in the country for child prostitution issues and it was there that at least 4 pimps were arrested in the area.  These sweeps have, in total, resulted in approximately 1,350 convictions and $3.1 million in asset forfeiture. California law dictates (CA Penal Code §647(b)) that anyone soliciting prostitution (offering to engage in sex for money) or actually participating in acts of prostitution...

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Woman Charged with Felony Child Endangerment in San Mateo (CA Penal Code §273(a))

Under California law, child endangerment is considered a felony (CA Penal Code §273(a)) when the child in question has merely been placed in a dangerous situation – not only when the child has been actually harmed.  Many people every year are falsely accused of child endangerment or are harshly prosecuted beyond the bounds of reason. This may be what happened to Alissa Charlene Anderson, a 22-year-old mother who has recently been accused of this crime.  An anonymous citizen claims to have seen a child fall out of the hatchback of Anderson’s van while it was moving.  Based on this tip, local...

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San Mateo Resident Arrested for Hate Crime (CA Penal Code §422.55, §422.7 & §422.75)

San Mateo police have arrested Santos Manuel Marquez (36) on allegations of attempted murder, aggravated mayhem, assault with a deadly weapon, and commission of a hate crime for having severely beaten a man about the head and face with a heavy-duty U-shaped anti-theft lock because he was disturbed by the man’s sexual orientation.  The incident occurred late at night on the 700 block of residential Santa Inez Avenue.  Seemingly, the victim of the alleged hate crime had eaten at the same local restaurant as Marquez earlier that evening and San Mateo Police Sergeant Dave Norris has stated that he suspects...

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Bay Area Man Acquitted of Breaking & Entering in His Shared Home (CA Penal Code §459)

Everyone can agree that 31-year-old Christopher Hall had a bad couple of weeks.  At first, everything seemed like a Bay area love story.  Hall met a 34-year-old woman at a hacky-sack circle and, two weeks later, the two were making plans to get married.   After a month or so, in March of 2013, Hall decided to break off the engagement, grabbed a few of his things from their shared home, and went off to Mclaren Park with plans to spend the night in a tree.  Later in the evening, Hall became too cold to remain in the tree and headed...

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Child Predator at San Francisco Barnes & Noble (CA Penal Code 314)

Heading to the bookstore with your daughter on a sunny summer day usually doesn’t spell disaster.  However, for one 10-year-old young lady and her mother, a trip to a San Francisco Barnes & Noble on W. Hillside Boulevard turned sour quickly when an unidentified 50-year-old man in a fishing hat and khaki pants led the girl out of the children’s section and into another, more quiet part of the store.  There, it seems that he exposed himself to her and touched her in an inappropriate way.  There is video footage of the man and local law enforcement officials are currently...

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Juvenile Accused of Rape of Intoxicated Woman in Morgan Hill (CA Penal Code §261(3))

After a night of drinking, a woman (40) decided to do what she thought was the responsible thing and take a taxicab home.  However, she was so intoxicated that, once they arrived at her residence, the cab driver needed some help getting her into her home.  A woman and her son (16-years-old) offered their assistance.  So far, this seems like the story of two good Samaritans who, without any good reason, wanted to help a neighbor. However, the 16-year-old son has been accused of returning to the woman’s house later that evening, raping her, and then bringing two other juveniles (one...

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Hit-And-Run in San Jose Ends with Death of Motorcyclist (CA Penal Code §191.5(b))

The yet unidentified driver of a Lexus attempted to flee the scene at the 1400 block of White Road before being caught by local law enforcement.  The incident also involved a motorcyclist, who was pronounced dead at the scene.  To complicate matters, the driver of the Lexus was charged with not only vehicular manslaughter, but also driving under the influence and hit-and-run. At first glance, this case may seem cut and dry – most people would assume that if the driver of the Lexus was accused of a DUI, then they must have been at fault.  Yet, it is the consequences...

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City of Hayward Pays Civil Settlement: Man Dead After Being Bitten by Police Dog (CA Civil Code §3342)

Even though they were searching for men that didn’t match his description – and robbery suspects at that – local law enforcement officers Loring and Cox found 89-year-old Jesse Porter instead.  On May 29, 2011, Porter was in his own yard, behind an 8-foot tall wall, when “Nicky”, Officer Cox’s well-trained police dog was commanded to leap over the barrier.  A shocked Mr. Porter was then “brutally and relentlessly mauled” by Nicky; his left leg suffered the most damage, as the dog dragged him for a ways before releasing his grasp.  After the incident, Porter’s leg worsened; in fact, he...

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Woman Hospitalized After Bayview District Hit-And-Run (CA Vehicle Code §20002)

An unnamed woman (59) sustained serious injuries after a hit-and-run on Third Street close to Revere Avenue in the Bayview neighborhood.  Local law enforcement officials are still looking for the driver of a dark sedan that drove away after the incident.  The woman who was hit was immediately sent to San Francisco General Hospital where she was treated for internal injuries; her current status is unknown. Under California law, a person may be charged with either misdemeanor hit-and-run or felony hit-and run (CA Vehicle Code §20002).  In order to be accused of a misdemeanor hit-and-run, you must have left the scene...

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