Ballot Measure 11 imposes lengthy, mandatory prison minimums for serious felonies.
During the first part of the case, the most immediate goal is to get the client released from custody and prevent interrogation by the police or the District Attorney’s office. Friends, family and employers are called as character witnesses at this stage in an effort to educate the court about the client and show that he or she is not a flight risk and is not a danger of re-offending.
Preparation & Investigation
Forensic evidence is investigated. Witnesses are interviewed. Depending on the facts of the particular case, challenges are made to the arrest, the search warrant, client statements and other evidence. If necessary, court orders are obtained to inspect and evaluate evidence in police custody. Often experts are hired to perform their own tests. A private investigator is retained to track down missing witnesses and follow up on loose ends left by the police. Police reports are reviewed for accuracy and inconsistencies. If necessary, court orders are obtained to retrieve additional evidence in the hands of the District Attorney. The crime scene is visited, measured, and photographed. Exhibits are prepared for trial.
While preparing the case for trial, the case is also prepared for the worst case scenario. Counselors, psychological evaluations, independent testing; drug, alcohol, anger or sex offender education classes, and sometimes polygraphs are often employed to mitigate the circumstances of the offense. A background check on the alleged victim or victims is conducted. The victim is often interviewed to find out what they want out of the case, and to see if they will cooperate to help reduce the consequences to the client. Sometimes a settlement conference is scheduled or a packet of materials are assembled for the District Attorney’s Ballot Measure 11 Committee in an effort to have the charge reduced to a lesser-included, non-Ballot Measure 11 offense. This comprehensive effort usually yields excellent results.
Measure 11 Crimes & Prison Terms
Murder, 300 months; Attempted Murder or conspiracy to commit aggravated murder, 120 months; Attempt or conspiracy to commit murder, 90 months; Manslaughter I, 120 months; Manslaughter II, 75 months; Assault I, 90 months; Assault II, 70 months; Kidnap I, 90 months’ Kidnap II, 70 months; Rape I, 100 months; Rape II, 75 months; Sodomy I, 100 months; Sodomy II, 75 months; Unlawful sexual penetration I, 100 months; Unlawful sexual penetration II, 75 months; Sex abuse I, 75 months; Robbery I, 90 months; Robbery II, 70 months; Arson I, 90 months; Using a child in a display of sexual conduct, 70 months; Compelling prostitution 70 months.