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In 2010, California began what is being called the “justice reform era.” That is when new legislation, voter-approved initiatives, and court mandates began to make sweeping changes to the state’s justice system.

So, is California starting to see the effects of these laws? Recently, a non-profit group Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice released a study of the justice reform era to find out what impact these laws have had.breaking_handcuffs_2-300x197

Justice Reform Era Stats

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California will make sales of recreational marijuana legal on Jan. 1, 2018. So, when the law takes effect, what happens to people who have been convicted of marijuana-related crimes in the past? Thanks to a provision in California’s new marijuana laws, those convicted of nearly any marijuana offense may have the opportunity to get their conviction expunged.

New Marijuana Laws Allow Offenders to Expunge Criminal Record

According to the Drug Policy Alliance, nearly 500,000 people were arrested for marijuana crimes in California from 2006 to 2015. Those offenders now have the opportunity to clear their record or be released from custody under new California laws regarding marijuana.Possesion-of-MJ-300x200

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On Jan. 1, 2018, hundreds of new laws will go into effect in California, and they will impact every citizen in our state. Here’s a look at 10 important new California laws for 2018 that you need to know.

10. AB 1008: Ban-the-Box Criminal History on Applications

Companies with five or more employees are now prohibited from asking about a potential employee’s criminal history on job applications. Inquiring about or considering criminal history at any time DUI_Marijuana_Drugs-300x201before a conditional offer of employment has been made is now illegal under Government Code 12952.

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There’s an expression that “two wrongs don’t make a right.” However, U.S. lawmakers may not be following that old saying when it comes to “revenge hacking.”

Congressman Tom Graves (R-GA) and Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) have co-sponsored the Active Cyber Defense Security Act (ACDC), which would essentially allow people or companies who have been hacked for data to “hack back” the hacker.

What are “Hack Back Laws?”

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Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, businesses in California will be able to apply for a license to sell marijuana. Recently, the California Bureau of Cannabis Control, Department of Food and Agriculture, and Department of Public Health released a nearly 300-page rulebook of regulations that new and established marijuana businesses will have to follow if they are issued a license to sell marijuana.

Here are the 10 most important rules and regulations businesses selling marijuana must follow in California:Marijuana_Plant-300x225

10. Delivery by Vehicle Only

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In recent years, California has passed several laws that essentially give people who are convicted of low-level crimes a second chance.

It all started when California voters approved Prop. 47 in 2014, which reclassified several drug, theft, property and other non-violent crimes from felonies to misdemeanors. Other reforms soon followed, including changes to the Three Strikes law, realignment of the prison system, and expansion of parole opportunities under Prop. 57. Since these reforms took effect, California has reduced its prison population by nearly 20 percent.breaking_handcuffs_2-300x197

Recently, a group of lawmakers in Sacramento decided that California has reformed too many criminal justice laws. The result is the “Reducing Crime and Keeping California Safe Act,” a proposed ballot initiative that would undo many of the criminal justice reforms approved over the past few years.

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California is strict when it comes to gun laws. For instance, using a gun in any way during the commission of a felony crime carries mandatory prison time.

However, this will change when a new law recently passed in California takes effect on January 1, 2018. The law will remove the mandatory prison time for using a gun during a crime.guns_weapons_firearms_pointing-278x300

California Ends Mandatory Sentence for Using Firearm During Crime (SB 620)

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Every day, people get arrested for domestic violence after having an argument with their spouse. Many people accused of domestic violence have no prior criminal record. The district attorney may try to take advantage of this by offering a plea bargain in which the accused avoids jail time. It is important to retain an experienced southern California domestic violence attorney who knows the law to help you with your case before you consider accepting a plea bargain and entering a guilty plea.

One of the reasons why it is important to seek the help of an experienced domestic violence attorney is so that you can fully understand all of the consequences you face if you are convicted of this crime. Not only do you face potential jail time and expensive fines, you could be subject to penalties that will impact you for the rest of your life, including losing your right to own or possess a firearm.

Domestic Violence Penalties

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California’s bail system could soon see significant changes after a year-long study recently concluded with a recommendation that monetary bail be replaced with a risk-based assessment system and supervision programs.

In October 2016, California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye established the “Pretrial Detention Reform Workgroup.” The group recently reported the findings of its study, which include the fact that California’s money bail system is “unsafe and unfair.”

Does this mean bail reform is on its way?

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Something about the story did not add up. That was the conclusion police came to after interviewing Richard Dabate shortly after his wife, Connie, was found dead in the couple’s basement.fitibt_promo-300x242

Dabate claimed an unidentified man broke into the home, tied him to a chair, then shot and killed his wife after she returned home from the gym. He claimed he came home from work to get his laptop to find an intruder upstairs. He could not remember whether he set the alarm on the house, and claimed the intruder killed Connie and tried to use a torch on him. Dabate stated he wrestled with the intruder and burned him with the torch, causing him to flee.

However, police found no evidence of a struggle, no forced entry and nothing had been taken from the home. K-9 units found no scent of the mysterious attacker. Then, a piece of technology ultimately led investigators to determine that Dabate was lying.

About Wallin & Klarich

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Wallin & Klarich was established in 1981. Over the past 32 years, our law firm has helped tens of thousands of families in their time of legal need. Regardless of whether our clients faced criminal or DUI charges, the loss of their driving privilege, or wanted to clean up their criminal record, we have been there to help them.