Santa Ana Criminal Defense Attorney

California Proposition 47: Reduced Penalties for Some Crimes

The Proposition 47 ballot, approved by California voters in 2014, provides that certain non-serious and non-violent property and drug crimes can be reclassified from felonies to misdemeanors. Also referred to as the “Safe Neighborhood and Schools Act,” the initiative would in effect reduce prison populations, create more room for violent criminals in prison, and save tens of millions in taxpayer dollars per year.

Under this initiative, as many as one million Californians may be eligible for resentencing or to change past felony convictions.

More specifically, Prop 47 stipulates that:

  • Penalty reductions are only extended to defendants that do not have any prior convictions for murder, rape, gun crimes, or certain other sex offenses
  • Resentencing can occur for anyone currently in prison serving time for felony offenses that are now being redefined as misdemeanors
  • An individual’s criminal history is evaluated, along with their risk potential, to ensure that they do not pose a threat upon being reintroduced to the public
  • A “Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund” is created to distribute the funds that the state has saved in incarcerating criminals to the Department of Education, the Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board, and the Board of State and Community Correction
  • Crimes including shoplifting, grand theft, receiving stolen property, forgery, fraud, and writing bad checks can only be reconsidered as misdemeanors if the amount of the stolen property does not exceed $950

In Los Angeles especially, which houses the country’s largest jail system, the drop in inmate population has enabled an end to the early release of violent criminals due to overcrowding as well as allowing more time and resources to be made available for rehabilitation.

If you have been charged with a crime in Santa Ana, The Law Offices of Jerry Schaffer, Jr. can offer you the hard-hitting legal strategies you need to reappraise your criminal record and save you possible jail time. As a former prosecutor, I know the criminal justice system inside and out, and can help you apply this new law to your set of circumstances.

Don’t wait – call a Santa Ana criminal defense lawyer today for a free case evaluation.

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