With the New Year underway, adults in California should take a moment to consider some significant changes to the criminal justice system. At Law Office of Ronald G. Brower, we make a point of sharing legislative changes that could affect current and future clients. Understanding of the law can help persons prevent future run-ins with the legal system.
One of the most drastic changes to the criminal justice system is the end of cash bail or money bail. Later this year, most defendants awaiting trial will be able to do so from the comfort of their own home without having first to make bond. In October, the severity of one’s crime and the likelihood a defendant will show up to their court date will be the deciding factor in whether a person awaits trial in jail or not. Instead of money bail, judges will rely on a pretrial risk assessment to decide who is eligible for release.
Another significant change is a follow up to California Proposition 64, the bill legalizing adult recreational use of cannabis. Under the terms of a new law, the California Department of Justice is ordered to review the cases of thousands of people with marijuana convictions, to determine if sentences should be reduced or expunged, according to KCRA 3. The California DOJ has until July 1st to compile a list of such people.
One more item that Californians should know about has to do with driving under the influence and driver privileges.
Ignition Interlock Devices
Practically every adult in California – and particularly those with driver’s licenses – understand that driving under the influence is a serious matter. Each state handles intoxicated driving a little differently, but some states are exceedingly strict. Senate Bill 1046 pertains to the use of DUI Ignition Interlock Devices or IIDs. Under the new law, drivers convicted of DUI can stay on the road but with the caveat of installing an IID.
“Starting January 1, 2019, individuals convicted of a DUI will only be able to regain their full driving privileges if they install an ignition interlock device in each of the vehicles they own,” said San Diego Assemblyman Todd Gloria.
As the California Department of Motor Vehicles points out on their website, Californians convicted of more than one DUI are now subject to new rules under SB 1046. The DMV writes:
From January 1, 2019 to January 1, 2026, this law mandates repeat offenders for driving under the influence (DUI) and first DUI offenders whose violations resulted in injury, to install an ignition interlock device (IID) for a period ranging from 12 to 48 months. This law also allows those who receive a suspension under the Administrative Per Se law to obtain an IID-restricted driving privilege, and receive credit toward their required IID restriction period if they are later convicted of a DUI. These provisions apply to DUI violations that involve alcohol or the combined use of alcohol and drugs. They do not apply to drug-only violations. Additionally, courts have the discretion to order a non-injury first DUI offender to install an IID for a period of up to 6 months. If the court does not order IID installation, a non-injury first offender may apply for a driver license for IID restrictions or restrictions that allow them to drive to, from, and during their employment and to and from a DUI treatment program for 12 months. Previously, an IID pilot program was only in effect in Alameda, Los Angeles, Sacramento and Tulare counties.
Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney
If you or a family member are experiencing legal troubles, Attorney Ronald Brower can assist you in finding a favorable outcome. With decades of experience, attorney Brower has the expertise, knowledge, and understanding of the law to advocate for your family and secure the most favorable result. Please contact us today to learn more.