Legal Question in Criminal Law in California

90 day sentence 1st offense 484(a) pleaded Not Guilty

I went to my arraignment today for a 484(a) of which the only contact I ever had with law enforcement was via a letter telling me to appear. I spoke with a public defender who told me they had video tape showing me in a particiular area where a $260.00 Cash theft transpired. The tape never shows me taking the money, just in the area. I don't know how, but the 260.00 turned into 370.00 magically as the amount that was taken. I pleaded ''not quilty'' and have a trial set for 12/09. Is it normal for a first offense to hold such an excessive penalty 90 days? I was under the impression a fine and probation, or restitution. Need some help other then a Public Defender.


Asked on 11/07/02, 8:23 pm

4 Answers from Attorneys

Robert Miller Robert L. Miller & Associates, A Law Corporation

Re: 90 day sentence 1st offense 484(a) pleaded Not Guilty

Thank you for your inquiry.

What is "normal" -- even for a particular court, depends on the mood and temperament of the judge, the mood and temperament of the prosecutor, and the evidence and nature of the alleged crime.

For a crime such as PC 484, or for any crime under the Penal Code, there are minimum and maximum penalties. The judge has the discretion at arraignment to make an offer between the minimum and maximum, but cannot reduce or dismiss charges without the prosecutor becoming involved, as it is the prosecutor, not the judge, that is charging you with the crime.

No one can guarantee you only "a fine, probation or restitution", but an attorney can review the law and facts of your case, your defenses, and keep negotiating with the prosecutor to reduce charges, dismiss charges, or plea bargain, if appropriate.

In my humble biased opinion, I believe you should retain a private attorney if possible. If you have any questions for me, or need representation, please feel free to email me directly at [email protected], or call my office anytime.

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Answered on 11/07/02, 8:33 pm
Steven Mandell Law Offices of Steven R. Mandell

Re: 90 day sentence 1st offense 484(a) pleaded Not Guilty

As Mr. Miller said, the outcome of a particular case depends on a lot of factors, and the skill of your lawyer is one of them. I would definitely consult with a criminal lawyer in your area. I can't imagine that the Public Defender even saw the video tape where you're alleged to be seen, but the Winona Ryder trial shows that you can't believe someone else's eyes. See the tape yourself. It is available to your lawyer. Then, based on what the tape shows, plus the observations which will be alleged in the police reports, your lawyer can probably negotiate a better deal. Heck, Winona Ryder just got convicted of FELONY grand theft and she's not getting jail time. If you would like to meet with me for a free consultation, don't hesitate to call. Steve Mandell Santa Monica 310 393 0639

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Answered on 11/07/02, 9:36 pm
David Diamond Diamond & Associates

Re: 90 day sentence 1st offense 484(a) pleaded Not Guilty

I apoligize for the dealyed response . If you are still looking for representation in this case please contact our offices immediately at 1-866-You-Are-Innocent

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Answered on 12/02/02, 5:24 pm
David Diamond Diamond & Associates

Re: 90 day sentence 1st offense 484(a) pleaded Not Guilty

That is extreme. Please contact my office at 310/277-1707. First time offense doesn't constitute 90 days. Which court?

Sincerely,

Lawrence Wolf, Esq.

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Answered on 11/08/02, 2:03 pm


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