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New California Criminal Laws in 2018

We’ve already touched on four of them: Recreational pot. A ban-the-box law for employers. An overhauled sex-offender registry beginning in 2021. New rules for picking juries in civil and criminal cases. Here are five more this week, with five more to come next week. Lawyers can advise clients on cannabis. This is Assembly Bill 1159. It amended the Read More

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California’s New Sex-Offender Registry

Big news out of California last week. Beginning in 2021, the state will replace its current sex-offender registry, which requires everyone to register for life, with a three-tiered system that distinguishes among low-risk, medium-risk, and high-risk offenders. People in the first tier will be able to petition to end their registration after ten years. You’re in this tier Read More

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Two Sides of the Same Coin

It’s not always easy to weigh the scales of justice. Sometimes, like in the two stories from last week, the system treats people too harshly, and it ruins their lives. Other times, though, someone’s unfairly blamed for not being harsh enough. That’s the premise of this piece by a former chief criminal judge who was vilified for setting someone free without Read More

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Two Tears

Two true stories, that is, of people on a sex-offender registry. The first. Today, she’s a 34-year-old mother of two great kids. Back then, she was a teenager herself when she slept with a boy on the night of her 19th birthday party. The boy was mature enough to pursue her but, as it happened, he was 14. His Read More

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Getting Removed From the Megan’s Law Website in California

Last week, we wrote about certificates of rehabilitation, which relieve you from having to register as a sex offender. As you may know, California publishes information from its sex-offender registry on a public website. The information includes your name, gender, date of birth, ethnicity, photograph, physical description, and relevant conviction. It also includes your home address or your county and Read More

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Certificates of Rehabilitation in California

A certificate of rehabilitation is a court order that declares your rehabilitation to the world. It also automatically recommends you to the governor for a pardon. If you’re not eligible for an expungement, you can still clean up your record through a certificate of rehabilitation. Or you may want to apply for one even though you’ve already expunged Read More

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Sealing Juvenile Records in California

In the case we wrote about last week, a California court held that it wasn’t cruel and unusual punishment to require a minor to register as a sex offender for life. The court noted, however, that a kid could be relieved of this requirement if he got his juvenile records sealed. So how do you Read More

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Lifetime Sex-Offender Registration for Kids

Do you think sex-offender registration is punishment? What if it’s for life? What if it’s for a 12-year-old boy? Last week, the California Court of Appeal ruled that it’s not punishment to call a kid a sex offender for life because of something he did when he was twelve years old. According to the court, the boy’s early years Read More

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The Restoration of Rights Project

Have you ever been arrested? Do you have a prior conviction? Do you wonder whether you can clean up your record and how that affects you, if at all? Start here. It’s called the Restoration of Rights Project, and it looks at the law in every state for restoring your rights and status after an Read More

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The Modern Public Square

This week brought us another unanimous U.S. Supreme Court case that’s arguably more important because it concerned the First Amendment. The issue was a North Carolina law that made it a felony for registered sex offenders to use any social-networking site that let minors join. So, to be clear: that’s any social-media site, period, that let minors join. That Read More

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