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Ask Colleen Grady Your Own Question
Colleen Grady
Colleen Grady, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 485
Experience:  Attorney and Counselor at Law
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I was on drugs and have been in rehabilitation years.

Customer Question

I was on drugs and have been in rehabilitation for 2 years. I was a college student, I was using drugs heavily and took 10 Xanax and heroine and went to a party and began hallucinating. I woke up in jail and charged with 5 counts. 2 assault and battery, 1 robbery, and 2 criminal threats. My case has been going on for 2 years in the state of California. I have been in rehabilitation for the same amount of time voluntarily and my parents ordered it not optional. The case has been dragged out and the final offer on the table is dropping 4 charges and hold me with 1 count of criminal threats.Based on all the information i did not strike the victims first and in one case bit the person that had me in a choke hold. I am sure that i was out of control and probably someone trying to restrain me. The robbery charge is a 60 dollar phone that I grabbed out of someones hands that said they were going to call the police and then my friend handed it back to the person. It is my understanding that I was screaming horrible things which is why I was charged with criminal threats. They are offering 8 months in state prison. I have no prior record. Are there any alternatives to prison that I could ask for.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Hello. I will help you with your questions. I have been an attorney for 26 years and I was a prosecutor for 9 years. Please give me a short time to draft a complete response to your question. Can you tell me if you have any other criminal convictions? If so, for what charges?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I have never been in trouble prior to this
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Several things should help you to try to negotiate a different sentence. You have never had a criminal conviction and you have voluntarily been in rehabilitation. You have to make sure the judge knows this. You indicated you are offered 8 months in "state" prison. Are you sure it is not county jail?
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
I ask this because Criminal Threats with an 8 month jail sentence is a misdemeanor. If you are being offered a misdemeanor, that is good news because you will not be a convicted felon when all is done. Also, it is possible, if this is a misdemeanor, that you could ask the judge to confine you to house arrest with an electronic bracelet.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
They said State prison, is this considered a non violent crime? What is the alternative sentencing around this type of charge. Restitution? I was seen by a Psychologist that does court evaluations, she is a private Dr. that wrote a very detailed report to the court, to include the outcome if put in a prison setting. What else can I ask for at sentencing? Why is this considered a wobbler charge, I keep hearing that.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
My understanding is they are giving me a split sentence,which is where the 8 months comes in.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Penal Code 422 PC is a wobbler, which means that prosecutors may file it as either a misdemeanor or a felony. If you are convicted of the misdemeanor, you face up to one year in a county jail. If you are convicted of the felony, you face up to four years in the California state prison.If you are being charged with the Felony then you are being offered 8 months in prison plus 3 years probation. During probation you may be required to go to rehab, anger management or other counseling. An alternative you can request is serving time in a treatment facility.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Yes, this is considered a violent crime because it includes threats of violence.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I have been in a treatment center for 21 months..
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
So is this best recourse to request the judge to drop it to a misdemeanor, Intensive supervision, treatment? What are your thoughts? How much does the court psych report play in the decision
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Yes. if you get it dropped to a misdemeanor, many more options open up to you including house arrest and electronic monitoring if the judge agrees. The court psychiatric report will be important. This report will help the judge to decide if you are a good risk to be let out into the community.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
You have been in self imposed confinement and treatment. This should be highlighted by your attorney. Intensive supervision is a reasonable plea to ask for as an alternative. This would include weekly meetings with a parole officer, curfews, attending counseling, drug testing at anytime.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
You have turned your like around in the 2 years since this happened. I don't know why the prosecutor is being so hard on your as a first time offender. Are the people you threatened pushing for a tough sentence?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Are there intensive supervision facilities in California or would I have to find my own. Or could I stay in the facility I am currently in.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
If this is allowed, your parole or probation officer will identify these programs for you.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Are you in a private facility?
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
You may be allowed to stay there if the court and probation agree. If this sentence is offered, your parole officer will supervise you on a weekly basis as well.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
What does your lawyer say about all this? Does he or she think that they will agree to an alternative to prison?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I think for what we started with this is a blessing, but of course i dont want to go to prison. he is trying everything but i have to research all options
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Yes I am in a private facility
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I have really turned my life around and I have all the reports from my treatment center that the court has.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Your lawyer should be really fighting to have no jail time using your recovery as the basis. Those reports from your treatment center are important and should be highlighted by hour lawyer.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Is there biased because my charges were not drug related
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
I always think that. There are a lot of alternative for drug related offenses. In your case, drugs led to the behaviors and they leave you out.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
The criminal justice system sometimes has tunnel vision. It makes laws to solve certain types of problems and forgets the other problems.
Expert:  Colleen Grady replied 7 months ago.
Let me know if you have more questions. I will be happy to help more. If you are satisfied with my assistance, please rate my service.