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    Know and Protect Your Rights in a Criminal Defense Matter

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      Know and Protect Your Rights in a Criminal Defense Matter

          Martinez Post-Conviction Relief Lawyer

          A criminal record could be devastating to your personal and professional prospects. Unless you take steps to clean up your record, it may hold you back in several ways including loss of job offers, denial of professional licenses, loss of previously held employment, or even reputational concerns regarding your character, credibility, and veracity.  We believe that individuals are better than their worst mistake, that they are not defined by a past conviction, and that everyone deserves the opportunity for a fresh start and to show that they have been rehabilitated.

          A Martinez Post-Conviction Relief attorney could help you clean up your past convictions, terminate your probation early, get certified as rehabilitated, or even seal your arrest. Under California law, there are numerous avenues to address your criminal record and possibly modify the outcome, but the process can be complicated with many rules and eligibility requirements to sift through. The sooner you seek out a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney the sooner you can get your life back on track.

          When is Post-Conviction Relief Necessary?

          Post-conviction relief describes the various ways a defendant may ask for a review of their situation after conclusion of the case.  Each person’s circumstances are unique. The relief sought depends on numerous factors, including the charges, the facts of the case, the amount of time since the conviction, whether the individual served time in prison, if the person completed all the terms of their probation, if the individual has remained crime free, and much more.

          Under specific circumstances, the California Penal Code requires courts to modify charges, alter sentences, or amend a person’s criminal record. Proposition 47 downgraded several theft offenses (e.g., shoplifting under California Penal Code § 459.5 and receiving stolen property valued at less than $950 under Cal. Penal Code § 496(a)) from felonies to misdemeanors. Proposition 64 decriminalized marijuana possession, and under California Health and Safety Code §§ 11361.8 and 11361.9, individuals convicted of cannabis possession before this law’s enactment may have their cases reviewed to modify the sentence or order a dismissal.

          Additionally, the California law provides a remedies for individuals who have completed drug treatment diversion programs or a deferred entry of judgment programs. Under Cal. Penal Code §§ 1000.3(d) and 1203.43, once an individual has completed such a program, the court must grant their petition for dismissal of charges. By seeking the advice of a criminal attorney experienced with post-conviction remedies, people in Martinez may better understand if any of these mandatory mechanisms apply to their specific cases.

          Applying for Discretionary Relief

          Even if relief is not mandated, there are several options for people to request that the court review their case and determine if something in the record warrants a change in a person’s status.

          To challenge the outcome of a trial, those convicted may file a Motion for a New Trial If granted, the defendant will have an opportunity to bring to court any new evidence that was not reasonably available at the first trial. This new evidence may then be part of further appeals, under Cal. Penal Code § 1181.  The convicted defendant may also appeal directly to a higher court under Cal. Penal Code § 1237. If the appeals process is not successful, defendants have the option of submitting a Writ of Habeas Corpus, arguing that their incarceration is unlawful.

          Other post-conviction relief defendants frequently seek includes:

          • Vacating a conviction, sentence, or guilty plea
          • Terminating probation early
          • Requesting resentencing
          • Certifying rehabilitation of the defendant
          • Expunging criminal records
          • Sealing juvenile records
          • Removing or excluding individuals from the sex offender registry
          • Reducing felonies to misdemeanors
          • Seeking a governor’s pardon

          Regardless of the path chosen, success will require researching the individual’s unique situation, applying the legal requirements to the facts, and submitting a persuasive application for relief. An experienced Martinez post-conviction relief attorney could help determine and pursue the appropriate form of relief.

          Hire a Martinez Post-Conviction Relief Attorney Today

          Whether you need to clean up your record or challenge the outcome of a court decision, a Martinez post-conviction relief attorney could help. There may be various avenues that apply to your situation, and a trained local criminal defense attorney could help guide you to the best outcome. To start your evaluation, call us today.

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            Martinez Post-Conviction Relief Lawyer

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