Legal Question in Criminal Law in California

about 4 years ago when i was a minor, i got a possession of marijuana charge. i never payed the ticket because they put me on probation and asked for more money than what was available at the time. and the ticket was 448$ then. since then marijuana has been decriminalized and a ticket is only 100$ now. i havnt been able to get ahold of the court system and every time i go to court to get some help im told to stand in a line and wait to be called which never happens. i live in california, what along the lines am i gonna be looking at paying, and how would i do so? i really need some help, please and thank you.

Asked on 6/29/13, 11:31 am

3 Answers from Attorneys

Kelvin Green The Law Office of Kelvin Green

So if you never paid the fine... Your probation was probably revoked.. You need an attorney! your troubles may be more than a couple hundred dollars.

Ignoring the court causes serious problems. You should have taken care of this four years ago. The court lies proactive people resolving problems not excuses

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Answered on 6/29/13, 12:52 pm

Anthony Roach Law Office of Anthony A. Roach

I don't know where you are getting your legal information, but it is wrong. Possession of less than 28.5 grams of marijuana has always carried a fine of $100.00. I think you were assessed more because there were other charges included with your fine, which is normal. You are correct that possession of less than 28.5 grams was changed to an infraction in 2010.

You need to get a copy of your case documents and see an attorney. Unpaid court fines can cause problems down the road.

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Answered on 7/01/13, 3:40 pm
Terry A. Nelson Nelson & Lawless

Changes to the law do not affect your case, which was already 'sentenced'.

You have an arrest warrant outstanding because of the 'failure to appear'

and probation violation.

To handle a warrant, you must turn yourself in to the issuing court, with

or without an attorney. On misdemeanors and infractions, an attorney can

appear in court without the defendant being present – which is safer and

avoids immediately being taken into custody. You’ll try to negotiate a

recall of the warrant[s] and seek bail reduction or OR release. You’ll

try to negotiate a plea bargain on any ‘Failure to Appear’ charge or

probation violation that caused the warrant. While this isn't a 'capital

case', you now face potential jail and fines, so handle it right.

Effective plea-bargaining by your attorney, using whatever legal defenses,

facts and sympathies there may be, could possibly keep you out of jail, or

at least dramatically reduce it, and may enable you to get your probation

and programs reinstated. Unless you're competent to effectively represent

yourself in court against a professional prosecutor trying to put you in

jail, most people hire an attorney who can. If serious about hiring

counsel to help in this, feel free to contact me.

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Answered on 7/07/13, 12:51 am

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