The Criminal Docket

  A  PUBLICATION  OF  THE  CRIMINAL  JUSTICE  SECTION  OF  THE  LOS  ANGELES  COUNTY  BAR  ASSOCIATION

      May 2006

Volume I , Number  4 


KLEIN’S KORNER
JUDGE ROSS KLEIN
LOS ANGELES SUPERIOR COURT
TELEPHONE: (562) 804-8045


NOVEMBER 2007 UPDATE

People v.Hartley (2007 DJDAR 16641) was decided on November 5, 2007 from the Third Appellate District.  It involves a narrow issue: Penal Code section 1210.1 (d)(1) states that after completion of drug treatment a defendant may petition the sentencing court for dismissal of the charges.  In this case (and in two joined cases) the probation department filed petitions recommending an early termination of probation, the setting aside of the “no contest” pleas, and a dismissal of the charges against them.  The trial court said that only the defendant or defendant’s counsel may petition the court and denied the requests.  The appellate court reversed, stating that the trial court took a too literal view of this requirement.  Balancing the language of the statute with “a reasonable and commonsense interpretation consistent with the apparent purpose and intention of the voters” the appellate court said that “having the probation department investigate, prepare, and file these kinds of petitions is markedly more efficient and economical” than having the defendant’s attorney obtain information from the probation department and then prepare and submit a petition.  While there is no prohibition against the attorney doing this, it is also permissible for the probation department to do so as well.   (Once I get the final citation for this case, I will let everybody know.)

Welcome to my new Proposition 36 readers.  If you know of others whom you think might like to receive the monthly Prop 36 outline updates, please email me at rklein@lasuperiorcourt.org and I will add their names to my list.

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