• California Car Thefts Rank High On a Nationwide List of Auto Crimes

      According to recent studies conducted by The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), seven out of the 10 worst hot spots for auto theft crimes in 2014 were in Californian metropolitan areas, most of ...

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    • The National Trial Lawyers: Top 40 Under 40 and Top 100 Trial Lawyers

      Attorney Frances Prizzia has devoted her career to providing criminal defense resources to the people of Southern California. For her tenacity and compassion on behalf of her clients in their pursuit ...

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    • The National Trial Lawyers: Top 40 Under 40

      Attorney Frances Prizzia has dedicated her practice to protecting the rights of those accused of criminal violations in Southern California. Through striving to always better herself, which in turn ...

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    • Belated happy birthday, Jesus!

      Merry Christmas, everyone. This post is inspired today by my savior's birthday. Those of you who know me know that I am Catholic. People have asked me how I reconcile the work I do, representing the ...

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    • The 4th Amendment and Exceptions to Warrants

      The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures and requires a warrant based on probable cause to justify a search or seizure. Over time, courts ...

      Read More
    • Can Contesting Evidence Help Me Win a Drug Case?

      It may seem impossible to put together a defense if the police found you possessing illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia —excuses like “it’s not mine!” or “I didn’t know what it was” only go so far in ...

      Read More
    • The Power of One

      The jury in the retrial of the sentencing phase for Jodi Arias deadlocked 11-1 in favor of death on Thursday. I have not paid much attention to the case, but I do always take notice when a criminal ...

      Read More
    • The Policing Problem in America

      We have a problem in this county. Well, we have more than a few. However, as I write this, our cities are burning. Some view this as a race problem. Others view it as a police problem. I view it as ...

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    • Silver Linings of Covid-19 in the Criminal Justice Field

      As in any crisis or tragedy, as we sit trying to figure out how to deal with the unprecedented impact of the Covid pandemic, we also look for silver linings. One hope is that by endangering so much of ...

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    • Where Do We Go From Here?

      Usually when I set out to write something here it is because I have an idea. I think there’s an issue out there that I can add a perspective to, be part of the solution to something. Not today. All I ...

      Read More
    • The Policing Problem in America

      We have a problem in this county. Well, we have more than a few. However, as I write this, our cities are burning. Some view this as a race problem. Others view it as a police problem. I view it as ...

      Read More
    • Silver Linings of Covid-19 in the Criminal Justice Field

      As in any crisis or tragedy, as we sit trying to figure out how to deal with the unprecedented impact of the Covid pandemic, we also look for silver linings. One hope is that by endangering so much of ...

      Read More
    • The Zo

      This post isn’t so much a blog of my original thoughts so much as a recommendation. I recently came across an incredible series of videos produced by The Marshall Project entitled “The Zo.” The ...

      Read More
    • One DNA Test Could Free Kevin Cooper

      The New York Times recently published an absolutely remarkable piece examining the pending execution of a potentially innocent man here in California. I write about it here primarily with the hope ...

      Read More
    • Arrested for a DUI on Labor Day?

      Did you have a run-in with the law over Labor Day weekend and end up in handcuffs or a jail cell for driving under the influence ( DUI )? The first thing you should know is that this is not an ...

      Read More
    • What to Expect at a DMV Hearing

      If you should ever be arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) in California, you will face two separate legal proceedings: a criminal DUI charge and a hearing with the California Department of ...

      Read More
    • False Accusations of Domestic Violence – Why Do They Happen?

      Were you recently approached by a police investigator who told you that your spouse, ex, or significant other had accused you of domestic violence? Are you seeing your boyfriend or girlfriend take to ...

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    • Comparing Restraining Orders to Emergency Protective Orders

      When someone has been accused of domestic violence , the alleged victim or the court may react by issuing a restraining order or an emergency protective order (EPO), which can also be called an ...

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    • Does a Police Officer in CA Have Probable Cause to Search for Marijuana?

      Although recreational marijuana use has been legal in California since 2016, there is much uncertainty surrounding the margins of legalization. One issue that often arises is whether the possession of ...

      Read More
    • Can Contesting Evidence Help Me Win a Drug Case?

      It may seem impossible to put together a defense if the police found you possessing illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia —excuses like “it’s not mine!” or “I didn’t know what it was” only go so far in ...

      Read More
    • An Overview of California's Medical Marijuana Laws

      Medical cannabis has been a legal treatment option available to Californians ever since the passing of the Compassionate Use Act in 1996. Under this legislation, patients and their designated primary ...

      Read More
  • DUI
    • Driving with Pot

      Now that marijuana is essentially decriminalized in California, there is a lot of confusion, both among civilians and the police about the laws surrounding marijuana in automobiles. Smoking marijuana ...

      Read More
    • New Ignition Interlock Device Requirements in California DUI Cases

      Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 1046 into law, effective January 1, 2019. The bill is a statewide expansion of a pilot program that ran in Alameda, Los Angeles, Tulare and Sacramento counties. The ...

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    • DUI Arrests When the Driver is Under the Legal BAC Limit

      The federal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for a civilian motorist is 0.08%. This number is typically generated through roadside breathalyzer tests but it can also be determined through a ...

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    • New Law Regarding Sealing Arrest Records

      The end of 2017 was a tremendous time for criminal justice reform in California. Governor Brown signed into law a number of laws that will have real impact in swinging the pendulum back towards the ...

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    • Expungement: How to Get a Criminal Record Cleared

      Receiving a conviction for a misdemeanor, or even just being arrested on suspicion of criminal charges, can negatively impact all facets of your private life. Employers generally do not want anyone ...

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  • FAQ
    • Expungement: How to Get a Criminal Record Cleared

      Receiving a conviction for a misdemeanor, or even just being arrested on suspicion of criminal charges, can negatively impact all facets of your private life. Employers generally do not want anyone ...

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    • Is Posting Bail As Soon As Possible After an Arrest the Right Call?

      After being arrested and charged with a crime, before you can actually get to work on your defense case, the first thing that you need to worry about is actually spending time in a jail cell. For most ...

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    • What are Bench Warrants?

      Not all warrants will send the police to your door for an arrest. In fact, the most common type of warrant in California is a bench warrant, or one that is issued by a judge. Bench warrants do not ...

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    • Explaining the Differences Between Felonies & Misdemeanors

      Legal definitions can get pretty complicated and convoluted. Thankfully, for the most part, the average person who has not dedicated their career to laws and regulations do not have to worry about ...

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    • The Times They Are A Changing

      The signs seem to be everywhere. After about 35 years of politicians and policy makers falling over themselves to jockey to be viewed as the toughest on crime, Americans finally seem to be waking up ...

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    • Musings on Ferguson

      So much has been said and written about the death of Michael Brown, the ensuing investigation and grand jury proceeding and most recently the decision of that grand jury not to indict Darren Wilson ...

      Read More
    • Firework Legality in California

      With the 4 th of July almost upon us, many people have already heard their neighbors shooting fireworks late at night. However, some areas of California are extremely dry this time of year, and state ...

      Read More
    • The Underdiscussed Power of The Chief Justice in an Impeachment Trial

      I have not written here about politics in a while. And I am not really doing so now. Instead, I’m writing about procedure, which just so happens to be the procedure of an impeachment trial in the ...

      Read More
    • Attorney Prizzia joined Board of Directors for FLOC

      Usually, I use this space to write about news and developments in the courts that I believe will be of interest to clients and potential clients, but it is my blog, so every now and then I need to ...

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    • Can a Criminal Conviction Harm My Immigration Status?

      When someone chooses to plead guilty in a criminal case, the plea must be “knowing, intelligent, and voluntary.” This means they must understand the rights they are giving up in order to plead guilty, ...

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    • Where Do We Go From Here?

      Usually when I set out to write something here it is because I have an idea. I think there’s an issue out there that I can add a perspective to, be part of the solution to something. Not today. All I ...

      Read More
    • Marc Kelly: A Man of Courage

      "The truth is, that, even with the most secure tenure of office, during good behavior, the danger is not, that the judges will be too firm in resisting public opinion, and in defence of private rights ...

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    • Where Do We Go From Here?

      Usually when I set out to write something here it is because I have an idea. I think there’s an issue out there that I can add a perspective to, be part of the solution to something. Not today. All I ...

      Read More
    • The Power of One

      The jury in the retrial of the sentencing phase for Jodi Arias deadlocked 11-1 in favor of death on Thursday. I have not paid much attention to the case, but I do always take notice when a criminal ...

      Read More
    • Juveniles and Miranda Rights

      Effective at the beginning of 2018, California law now requires that any juvenile under the age of 16 be permitted to consult with a lawyer prior to any custodial interrogation and even before they ...

      Read More
    • What is Young Adults Court?

      In the last two decades, research has revealed a great deal of new information about the development of the adolescent brain. One of the most interesting discoveries is that this development continues ...

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    • How Can I Encourage My Child to Stay Out of Legal Trouble?

      Summer break starts, a welcome relief for children and teens excited to begin a host of activities with their friends. This time of relaxation can help children recover from the stresses of school, ...

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    • The Zo

      This post isn’t so much a blog of my original thoughts so much as a recommendation. I recently came across an incredible series of videos produced by The Marshall Project entitled “The Zo.” The ...

      Read More
    • New Law Update

      Eyewitness identifications are one of the most common causes of wrongful convictions. Data published by the Innocence Project indicates that a full 75% of convictions later overturned by DNA evidence ...

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    • An Honest Insight on Our Relationship with Law Enforcement

      On August 4 th , a Los Angeles jury returned a 2.25 million dollar verdict against the County of Orange as a result of its finding that the policies of the Orange County Sheriff's Department had been ...

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    • Arrested for a DUI on Labor Day?

      Did you have a run-in with the law over Labor Day weekend and end up in handcuffs or a jail cell for driving under the influence ( DUI )? The first thing you should know is that this is not an ...

      Read More
    • What to Expect at a DMV Hearing

      If you should ever be arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) in California, you will face two separate legal proceedings: a criminal DUI charge and a hearing with the California Department of ...

      Read More
    • Driving with Pot

      Now that marijuana is essentially decriminalized in California, there is a lot of confusion, both among civilians and the police about the laws surrounding marijuana in automobiles. Smoking marijuana ...

      Read More
    • Does a Police Officer in CA Have Probable Cause to Search for Marijuana?

      Although recreational marijuana use has been legal in California since 2016, there is much uncertainty surrounding the margins of legalization. One issue that often arises is whether the possession of ...

      Read More
    • Can Contesting Evidence Help Me Win a Drug Case?

      It may seem impossible to put together a defense if the police found you possessing illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia —excuses like “it’s not mine!” or “I didn’t know what it was” only go so far in ...

      Read More
    • Driving with Pot

      Now that marijuana is essentially decriminalized in California, there is a lot of confusion, both among civilians and the police about the laws surrounding marijuana in automobiles. Smoking marijuana ...

      Read More
    • Does a Police Officer in CA Have Probable Cause to Search for Marijuana?

      Although recreational marijuana use has been legal in California since 2016, there is much uncertainty surrounding the margins of legalization. One issue that often arises is whether the possession of ...

      Read More
    • An Overview of California's Medical Marijuana Laws

      Medical cannabis has been a legal treatment option available to Californians ever since the passing of the Compassionate Use Act in 1996. Under this legislation, patients and their designated primary ...

      Read More
    • Is a Military Diversion Program Right for You?

      For a military member, even when your time at war is over, the effects of combat can stay with you, continuing to hurt you and sometimes having a severe and lasting impact your life. Serving in the ...

      Read More
    • Juveniles and Miranda Rights

      Effective at the beginning of 2018, California law now requires that any juvenile under the age of 16 be permitted to consult with a lawyer prior to any custodial interrogation and even before they ...

      Read More
    • Interrogating Children

      It may surprise you to learn that despite all we know about the development of the adolescent brain, until very recently, children were essentially treated like adults in police interrogations. ...

      Read More
    • Can Contesting Evidence Help Me Win a Drug Case?

      It may seem impossible to put together a defense if the police found you possessing illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia —excuses like “it’s not mine!” or “I didn’t know what it was” only go so far in ...

      Read More
    • Musings on Ferguson

      So much has been said and written about the death of Michael Brown, the ensuing investigation and grand jury proceeding and most recently the decision of that grand jury not to indict Darren Wilson ...

      Read More
    • COVID and the Courts

      The COVID-19 pandemic is creating an absolutely unprecedented crisis in the criminal justice system. Across California, courts have largely responded by limiting access to the courts, delaying trials ...

      Read More
    • The Underdiscussed Power of The Chief Justice in an Impeachment Trial

      I have not written here about politics in a while. And I am not really doing so now. Instead, I’m writing about procedure, which just so happens to be the procedure of an impeachment trial in the ...

      Read More
    • The Documentary, "Knock Down the House"

      I watched an amazing documentary on Netflix yesterday, “ Knock down the House .” The movie follows four candidates, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Cori Bush, and Paula Jean Swearingen, during the 2018 ...

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    • Belated happy birthday, Jesus!

      Merry Christmas, everyone. This post is inspired today by my savior's birthday. Those of you who know me know that I am Catholic. People have asked me how I reconcile the work I do, representing the ...

      Read More
    • California’s Age of Consent, and What it Means for You

      Understanding Consent in California Since 2014, California has defined consent as an “affirmative and ongoing” process for any sexual activity. This standard is useful for determining what counts as ...

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    • The Kavanaugh Hearings

      I have been wrestling with my feelings about the Kavanaugh accusations this week. On the one hand, I am a proud supporter of the #MeToo movement and believe that women who are the victims of sexual ...

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    • Standard of Proof in the Court of Public Opinion

      Ever since the Harvey Weinstein accusations broke, we have been inundated with people coming forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against powerful people. Perhaps most significantly, last ...

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    • The Capture of the Golden State Killer Demonstrates the Ways Privacy is Dwindling in America

      The capture of the alleged Golden State Killer brought national attention to the relatively new ability of law enforcement to identify suspects by following their genealogical family trees to close ...

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    • California’s Hate Crime Laws Are Leading to Harsher Sentencing

      Politics and other current, newsworthy events have led to an increase in attention to possible affronts made because of one’s affiliation with a minority group. The data shows that, despite the ...

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    • Legislative Update: Senate Bill 1437 Significantly Changes Murder Liability in California

      On September 30 th , Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 1437, a bill that drastically changes the ways in which the government can charge someone with murder, as I will explain below. Importantly, this ...

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    • One DNA Test Could Free Kevin Cooper

      The New York Times recently published an absolutely remarkable piece examining the pending execution of a potentially innocent man here in California. I write about it here primarily with the hope ...

      Read More
    • The 4th Amendment and Exceptions to Warrants

      The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures and requires a warrant based on probable cause to justify a search or seizure. Over time, courts ...

      Read More
    • What are Bench Warrants?

      Not all warrants will send the police to your door for an arrest. In fact, the most common type of warrant in California is a bench warrant, or one that is issued by a judge. Bench warrants do not ...

      Read More
    • Firework Legality in California

      With the 4 th of July almost upon us, many people have already heard their neighbors shooting fireworks late at night. However, some areas of California are extremely dry this time of year, and state ...

      Read More