A Court May Consider a Dismissed Charge When Imposing Probation Conditions

By: Wallin & Klarich

An Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney Knows How to Argue Against Facts Underlying a Dismissed Charge

A California appellate court has recently held that trial courts have broad discretion in granting or denying probation and imposing probation conditions. Further, the appellate court ruled that a trial court even may consider a charge that the defendant was not convicted of or pled guilty to. See People v. Martin, C.A. 4th/2, DAR p.10639.

In this case, the defendant was accused of domestic violence and resisting arrest. The defendant, in a plea agreement, pled guilty to the charge alleging that he resisted arrest. However, the defendant did not plead guilty to the domestic violence charge.

After the plea agreement was entered, the trial court imposed certain probation conditions addressing domestic violence (e.g., not to come within 100 yards of person’s home). The defendant attempted to argue that the court should not consider facts that pertain solely to a charge that has been dismissed as part of a plea agreement.

The trial court and appellate court disagreed with the defendant. The appellate court ruled that a probation condition is only invalid when it has no relationship to the crime, relates to conduct which is “not in itself criminal,” and “requires or forbids conduct which is not reasonably related to future criminality.”

The appellate court stated that facts that pertain to a charge that has been dismissed as part of a plea agreement cannot be considered for enhancement however this rule does not apply to conditions of probation.

A defendant needs an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight for his or her interests. Wallin & Klarich has over 30 years of experience handling criminal defense. Let the California skilled criminal defense lawyers at Wallin & Klarich advise you and ensure your rights and freedom are protected under the law. Contact Wallin & Klarich for a consultation at 1-888-280-6839. Also, visit us online at www.wklaw.com to learn more about your case and what can be done.

Posted In: Criminal Appeals