Force or Threat of Force
The state of California treats the commission of violent crimes very seriously. Homicide, rape, kidnapping, and robbery carry heavy mandatory sentences and count as strikes under California’s Three Strikes Law.
If you have been charged with one of these California violent crimes, it is critically important that you obtain powerful representation immediately. The experienced criminal defense lawyers at The Rosenfeld Law Firm will provide you with an aggressive defense and the individual attention you deserve.
California Violent Crimes & Three Strikes Law
California’s Three Strikes Law was enacted in 1994 following a string of highly publicized child murders committed by repeat violent offenders. It was intended to prevent those with a history of committing violent crimes from being released into society to offend again. The Three Strikes Law specifies that if a defendant is convicted of three “strike” offenses, he or she will receive a mandatory sentence of life in prison. Crimes such as kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, rape, and murder all count as strikes under this law.
As an experienced California violent crimes defense attorney will tell you, a crime doesn’t necessarily need to be violent in order to count as a strike. The following are examples of non-violent California felonies that may be counted as second or third strikes:
- Petty theft with a prior offense
- Possession and sale of a controlled substance
- Receiving stolen property
It is important to note that being convicted of any felony—violent or not—can trigger the Three Strikes Law. The sooner you enlist the help of an aggressive criminal defense lawyer, the better your chances of avoiding a strike conviction.
California Homicide Laws
Because homicide is the most serious of all violent crimes, it carries the heaviest penalties. For example, California’s mandatory sentence for a first degree murder conviction is 25 years to life in prison. In addition, California prosecutors may seek the death penalty when a murder is committed:
- For racial or religious reasons
- Against an officer of the law
- With the use of a bomb or other explosive
- While committing another felony (such as kidnapping or carjacking)
In order to obtain a first-degree murder conviction, the prosecution must not only prove that you committed the crime but that the evidence supports the exact charges for which you are on trial. For example, if you are charged with first degree murder, the prosecution must show that you intended to kill the victim and that you planned the crime in advance. If there is not sufficient evidence to prove that the crime was premeditated, then the jury cannot convict on first degree murder charges even if they find you guilty of the victim’s death.
California Criminal Defense Lawyers
If you are charged with a violent crime in California, The Rosenfeld Law Firm can provide you with experienced criminal defense lawyers and investigators who will aggressively fight for your freedom. The Rosenfeld Law Firm attorneys who have worked in the D.A.’s office prior to becoming criminal defense lawyers share their in-depth knowledge of how the prosecution works. From using investigators to find exculpatory evidence to out-thinking the prosecution, your criminal defense team will provide you with the best possible chance of acquittal. Contact the Rosenfeld Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.
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Along with legal advice, The Rosenfeld Law Firm in Sacramento, California, offers experience and representation in other pertinent areas of practice including prison law, mental health law, appellate law, and federal criminal defense.