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San Francisco Traffic Law Clinic
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Since 1985 San Francisco Traffic Law Clinic

(People v. Flores (Aug. 12, 2019, No. G055861) ___Cal.App.5th___ [2019 Cal. App. LEXIS 740, at *1].)

Gang Investigation Leads to Detention

A team of Huntington Beach police officers investigating the “Looney Tunes Crew,” also known as the “LTK” street gang, saw the defendant in an area where they knew criminal activity took place. Defendant was walking briskly and was not a suspect in a particular crime nor in the process of committing a crime.

(People v. Abdullah (Aug. 1, 2019, No. B290563) ___Cal.App.5th___ [2019 Cal. App. LEXIS 709].)

In 2002, Warith Deen Abdullah was convicted of 13 counts of armed robbery and one count of assault with a deadly weapon, and sentenced to 48 years four months in state prison. The sentence included firearm enhancements under Penal Code former section 12022.531 that were mandatory at the time of the sentencing. In 2017, the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (DCR) sent a letter to the trial court calling attention to errors in Abdullah’s abstract of judgment. Before the trial court, Abdullah argued that the court must hold a new hearing to sentence him “in the same manner as if he … had not law that came into effect after his original sentencing.

Abdullah argued that the court must exercise its discretion whether to strike his firearm enhancements pursuant to recently enacted Senate Bill No. 620 The trial court refused to consider striking the enhancements and instead simply corrected the errors in the abstract of judgment without altering the length of Abdullah’s sentence.

People v. Cooper (July 18, 2019, No. B286201) ___Cal.App.5th___ [2019 Cal. App. LEXIS 648].

A jury convicted defendant and appellant Sheila Cooper of driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury within 10 years of a prior driving under the influence offense. On appeal, Cooper contends the trial court erred in denying her motion to suppress statements she made to police during field sobriety tests administered at the police station. Cooper claimed a violation of her Fifth Amendment rights under (Miranda).

The accident and Cooper’s demeanor

Governor Newsom has selected a technology consultant from Silicon Valley, Steve Gordon, to modernize the DMV’s decades old computer system which is in part responsible for the long wait times and dysfunction which has beset the agency. Anticipating long wait lines as Californians obtain Real ID’s- federally mandated identification cards-the Governor aims to restore trust in DMV operations after the agency mishandled the rollout of an automatic voter registration system.

Governor Newsom is thinking outside the box in not appointing a career bureaucrat to head to DMV, but a Silicon Valley outsider. It should be interesting to watch. Often times when people with business backgrounds enter government service, they run into trouble because they are not used to dealing with the general inherent governmental bureaucracies and inefficiencies. The DMV has long been mired in bureaucratic missteps and poor access.

Gordon applied for the job on the DMV website and the Governor credited his initiative and background at Cisco systems, where he was Vice President of technical services from 1993-2011. Gordon’s experience addressing things that were going wrong should help improve customer service at the DMV where wait times in excess of two hours is a regular occurrence. DMV Director Jean Shiomoto retired in December.Newsom took office in January and formed a “strike team” to fix the DMV, calling the department “chronically mismanaged.”

Marinelarena v. Barr, 2019 WL 3227458; (9th Cir. July 18, 2019)

Immigrants with drug convictions are eligible for immigration relief when the record of conviction is vague as to the type of controlled substance.

Conviction for conspiracy to sell and transport a controlled substance

United States v. Haymond (2019) ___U.S.___ [139 S.Ct. 2369], 2019 U.S. LEXIS 4398; No. 17-1672


Supreme Court of the United States,, Decided June 26, 2019. 

Imposition of a new and higher mandatory prison term for a parole violation requires jury trial

People v. Montalvo, 2019 WL 2537611 (Cal.App. 3 Dist.), 1 (Cal.App. 3 Dist., 2019)

Did a man a woman posing as undercover police officers who took property from their victims commit a robbery?

The California Court of Appeal examined this issue in a case where a defendant and a female associate, posing as undercover police officers committed two robberies. They took money from a couple at a hotel and in another instance, under the ruse of conducting a prostitution sting operation they stole money from their victim. Defendant was arrested in a hotel room where police recovered rock cocaine and a glass smoking pipe.

Flowers v. Mississippi, Supreme Court of the United States, 2019 WL 25524892019 WL 2552489,June 21, 2019

Defendant, (Flowers) who is black, was indicted for the murder of four employees of a Mississippi furniture store, three of whom were white. Flowers was tried six separate times for the murders and was convicted on one of those counts and sentenced to death. Flowers appealed.

The Supreme Court, Justice Kavanaugh, held that trial court clearly erred in concluding that the State’s peremptory strike of black prospective juror was not motivated in substantial part by discriminatory intent, in violation of Batson.

Everyone knows that certain offenses can result in your accumulating points on your California driver’s license, and everyone should know that those points are a serious matter as too many points in too short a span of time can result in the loss of your driving privileges. Most people know generally what kind of infractions result in points – things like speeding, reckless driving, drunk driving, hit-and-run, and having an accident where you’re at fault, to name a few.

However, it is possible to be completely sober, driving under the speed limit and be involved in no accident and still incur a ticket that results in points. How? One way it happens is when you’re ticketed for improper child safety restraint. As with any charge where points are on the line, always be sure to consult an experienced San Francisco DMV defense attorney to discuss the legal options available to you.

California Vehicle Code Section 27360 is the law that requires drivers to secure certain child passengers in a specific way. The law applies to all children under the age of 8 years old. For kids age 2 through 7, they must be in a proper car seat or booster in the vehicle’s back seat, unless they are more than 4’9” tall. For children under 2, they must be in a rear-facing car seat in the vehicle back seat. That rule also applies to older kids who are under 40 inches tall and under 40 pounds.