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  #1  
Old 03-30-2011, 12:14 PM
Julietta_2011 Julietta_2011 is offline
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Question 21 years for 2nd degree murder?

Well, my new PP says hes serving 21 years for 2 degree murder (commited when he was a teen). Hes in CA, btw.
Is that possible? Im not american so im still kinda ignorant about law there but i usually hear of people serving life for murder...Is he saying the truth?

Last edited by Julietta_2011; 03-30-2011 at 12:17 PM..
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  #2  
Old 03-30-2011, 12:36 PM
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that is a good sentence. My clients who were convicted of second degree murder are serving 30-96 years. Life or life without parole is usually first degree murder.

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  #3  
Old 03-30-2011, 12:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Well, my new PP says hes serving 21 years for 2 degree murder (commited when he was a teen). Hes in CA, btw.
Is that possible? Im not american so im still kinda ignorant about law there but i usually hear of people serving life for murder...Is he saying the truth?
Here are the terms that are usually involved for the two different degrees of murder in the state of California 2ND degree murder usually carries a term of 15 years to life 1st degree murder 25 years to life. These are indeterminate sentences . This means that you must do a minimum amount of time before you appear in front of the parole board for consideration of parole
You may also want to review the California Penal Code pertaining to the different degrees of murder. Here is a link to the California Penal Code
http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/calawquery?codesection=pen&codebody=&hits=20
To save you a little time I will list the section with a link that defines murder http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=pen&group=00001-01000&file=187-199
He may have committed this offense as a teen but more then likely was charged as an adult. ,
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Old 03-30-2011, 01:14 PM
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my friend has LWOP for second degree(pretty much a selfdefense even) (another state though). Saw the papers, he sure is telling the truth, in short, yes apparently it is possible.
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Old 03-30-2011, 02:10 PM
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Quote:
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Here are the terms that are usually involved for the two different degrees of murder in the state of California 2ND degree murder usually carries a term of 15 years to life 1st degree murder 25 years to life. These are indeterminate sentences . This means that you must do a minimum amount of time before you appear in front of the parole board for consideration of parole
You may also want to review the California Penal Code pertaining to the different degrees of murder. Here is a link to the California Penal Code
To save you a little time I will list the section with a link that defines murder
He may have committed this offense as a teen but more then likely was charged as an adult. ,
Thank you very much for the info!

Well, hes incarcerated since 2002 and he says his release date is 2023...
but you tell me these are indeterminate sentences?
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Old 03-30-2011, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Thank you very much for the info!

Well, hes incarcerated since 2002 and he says his release date is 2023...
but you tell me these are indeterminate sentences?

I think after you review the Ca. Penal Code , on the section that applies to murder you will see the murder in any degree in California has a indeterminate sentence . The sections of the code are a little confusing but read them a few times . ( I always have to ) you will see that you maybe only getting part of the story if he is in on second degree murder
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Old 03-30-2011, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Well, my new PP says hes serving 21 years for 2 degree murder (commited when he was a teen). Hes in CA, btw.
Is that possible? Im not american so im still kinda ignorant about law there but i usually hear of people serving life for murder...Is he saying the truth?
2nd Degree Murder in CA is 15 to life, and that has been the sentence for a VERY long time. There are enhancements for things like using a firearm, and there could be additional counts that can certainly add to the 15 year low end of teh sentence. Perhaps he meant that the minimum sentence before the possibility of parole is 21 years, but the way sentence times work that would be a strange number to end up with. It is possible that the 21 years is an estimate before having a realistic chance to parole. perhaps he told you a story that isn't accurate.
"To Life" means that parole doesn't have to happen. Recently, there is in fact the chance for some inmates to parole on a send degree murder, and where that happens a sentence in the 15-21 year range isn't unusual.
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Old 03-30-2011, 05:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrickj View Post
I think after you review the Ca. Penal Code , on the section that applies to murder you will see the murder in any degree in California has a indeterminate sentence . The sections of the code are a little confusing but read them a few times . ( I always have to ) you will see that you maybe only getting part of the story if he is in on second degree murder
Ive been checking the murder section again...my english is not the best so i apologize if ive annoyed you a little bit

Well, it seems ive got it now...hes serving a minimum of 21 years and the parole board will decide when they will release him...and i understand he could never be released, right?
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Old 03-30-2011, 06:01 PM
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That is correct, and you have not annoyed anyone with your questions.

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Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Ive been checking the murder section again...my english is not the best so i apologize if ive annoyed you a little bit

Well, it seems ive got it now...hes serving a minimum of 21 years and the parole board will decide when they will release him...and i understand he could never be released, right?
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  #10  
Old 03-30-2011, 06:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gryphon View Post
2nd Degree Murder in CA is 15 to life, and that has been the sentence for a VERY long time. There are enhancements for things like using a firearm, and there could be additional counts that can certainly add to the 15 year low end of teh sentence. Perhaps he meant that the minimum sentence before the possibility of parole is 21 years, but the way sentence times work that would be a strange number to end up with. It is possible that the 21 years is an estimate before having a realistic chance to parole. perhaps he told you a story that isn't accurate.
"To Life" means that parole doesn't have to happen. Recently, there is in fact the chance for some inmates to parole on a send degree murder, and where that happens a sentence in the 15-21 year range isn't unusual.
Hi Gryphon...Ive just seen your post.

I understand...And its usual to get released the first time you have the chance to parole or is it unusual to get it?
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Old 03-30-2011, 06:30 PM
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Assuming that you have the correct crime, he might never be released and he has to serve at least 15 years.
Maybe he has to serve at least 21 years if he has additional crimes; maybe he is guessing about how long he'll serve before the parole board will release him after his minimum 15 years is served; maybe he gave you incorrect information.

If he has additional crimes, he either had one that was very serious (a 6 year term indicates crimes like kidnap, rape, child molestation, and many otehr serious and usually violent crimes) or a great many small ones. In any event, there could be something going on that you haven't been told about since the 21 year sentence is greater than the sentence for 2nd degree murder.
If the 21 years is just a release date estimate on an indeterminate sentence (a sentence tha tdoesn't have a release date), that 21 year numbermight just be his guess based on a 15 to life sentence.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Ive been checking the murder section again...my english is not the best so i apologize if ive annoyed you a little bit

Well, it seems ive got it now...hes serving a minimum of 21 years and the parole board will decide when they will release him...and i understand he could never be released, right?
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  #12  
Old 03-30-2011, 06:32 PM
Julietta_2011 Julietta_2011 is offline
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That is correct, and you have not annoyed anyone with your questions.
Thank you Colorado_Lawyer
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Old 03-30-2011, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gryphon View Post
Assuming that you have the correct crime, he might never be released and he has to serve at least 15 years.
Maybe he has to serve at least 21 years if he has additional crimes; maybe he is guessing about how long he'll serve before the parole board will release him after his minimum 15 years is served; maybe he gave you incorrect information.

If he has additional crimes, he either had one that was very serious (a 6 year term indicates crimes like kidnap, rape, child molestation, and many otehr serious and usually violent crimes) or a great many small ones. In any event, there could be something going on that you haven't been told about since the 21 year sentence is greater than the sentence for 2nd degree murder.
If the 21 years is just a release date estimate on an indeterminate sentence (a sentence tha tdoesn't have a release date), that 21 year numbermight just be his guess based on a 15 to life sentence.
I understand...Is there an accurate way to check criminal records since California DOC Website doesnt offer it?

What about checking case files online? Ive heard of Pacer and Fastcase...
any advice?
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Old 03-30-2011, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Ive been checking the murder section again...my english is not the best so i apologize if ive annoyed you a little bit

Well, it seems ive got it now...hes serving a minimum of 21 years and the parole board will decide when they will release him...and i understand he could never be released, right?

You haven't annoyed me one bit I am just trying to help you with your question. Trust me. You aren't annoying anyone here
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Old 03-31-2011, 07:39 PM
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Pacer is only for federal cases. I wish all states had a good online system, but sadly most states don't. I am not aware of a reliable online site for California.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
I understand...Is there an accurate way to check criminal records since California DOC Website doesnt offer it?

What about checking case files online? Ive heard of Pacer and Fastcase...
any advice?
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Old 03-31-2011, 08:42 PM
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No CA state website that has case information.
If you know the CA County where he was convicted, some counties have case information online. Otherwise, you'd have to get sentence information directly from the Criminal Court Clerk in the County where he was convicted.

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Pacer is only for federal cases. I wish all states had a good online system, but sadly most states don't. I am not aware of a reliable online site for California.
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Old 03-31-2011, 08:51 PM
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It is unusual to be released at the earliest eligible parole date. Not long ago it was impossible to be paroled at all on a sencond degree murder. Recently, there have been paroles granted so there has been a big change.
I have heard of a couple of paroles on 2nd degree murder cases at the 1st eligible date. These were cases that involved sympathetic facts (eg. depression causes a mom to kill her kids, mom is very remorseful and the illness symptoms are no longer present); or facts unlikely to repeat (eg. bad guy drug dealer is shot when under the influence drug buyer mistakenly believes dealer is about to shoot first.)
If there is no opposition at a parole hearing, that significantly increases the chance of being paroled. If the prosecuting DA or especially the victim's family show up odds of release go down (maybe all the way down to zero).

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...And its usual to get released the first time you have the chance to parole or is it unusual to get it?
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Old 03-31-2011, 09:10 PM
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Many, but not all, counties in California have their own system for viewing cases online. The one I'm most experienced with is San Bernardino and you can view all minutes from every hearing in a criminal case. Orange County also has one and you can view the convicted charges and sentence imposed, but no minutes from the hearings. Riverside County is very similar to San Bernardino but you now have to pay a small fee. Los Angeles County has the least detailed and least reliable system I've seen and you have to pay a fee just to search, whether you get results or not.
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Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
I understand...Is there an accurate way to check criminal records since California DOC Website doesnt offer it?

What about checking case files online? Ive heard of Pacer and Fastcase...
any advice?

Last edited by sunangel111; 03-31-2011 at 09:13 PM..
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Old 03-31-2011, 10:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Well, my new PP says hes serving 21 years for 2 degree murder (commited when he was a teen). Hes in CA, btw.
Is that possible? Im not american so im still kinda ignorant about law there but i usually hear of people serving life for murder...Is he saying the truth?
My husband is serving 18-life for the same charge....
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Old 03-31-2011, 10:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julietta_2011 View Post
Well, my new PP says hes serving 21 years for 2 degree murder (commited when he was a teen). Hes in CA, btw.
Is that possible? Im not american so im still kinda ignorant about law there but i usually hear of people serving life for murder...Is he saying the truth?

we live in NYS though...
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Old 04-01-2011, 07:38 PM
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But there is no California statewide online site that one can search, if I am not mistaken? I guess CoCourts for Colorado is unusual in that you can search the entire state database, which is handy if you are not sure which county the person was convicted in (and since Denver metro area is comprised of seven counties, this is an issue) or don't know if he has other convictions in other counties.

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Originally Posted by Gryphon View Post
No CA state website that has case information.
If you know the CA County where he was convicted, some counties have case information online. Otherwise, you'd have to get sentence information directly from the Criminal Court Clerk in the County where he was convicted.
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:19 PM
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The only way to do a CA Statewide criminal records search is to use a subscription investigation database (which can miss things, and doesn't get much detailed information. The critical thing it gets you is a name of a county.)

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Originally Posted by Colorado_Lawyer View Post
But there is no California statewide online site that one can search, if I am not mistaken? I guess CoCourts for Colorado is unusual in that you can search the entire state database, which is handy if you are not sure which county the person was convicted in (and since Denver metro area is comprised of seven counties, this is an issue) or don't know if he has other convictions in other counties.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gryphon View Post
No CA state website that has case information.
If you know the CA County where he was convicted, some counties have case information online. Otherwise, you'd have to get sentence information directly from the Criminal Court Clerk in the County where he was convicted.
Yes, I know the CA County where he was convicted.
Ive checked their site, there are no case information online but they offer to get copies of documents from a criminal case requesting it in person or in writing via the mail.

Is getting a copy of his case file confidential?
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Old 04-04-2011, 08:47 AM
Julietta_2011 Julietta_2011 is offline
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^^^ Anyone knows how much do they charge (aprox.) for all the transcripts?
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Old 04-04-2011, 10:37 AM
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Most of a case file is not confidential. Some documents can be confidential and are sealed. These include sentencing reccomendations and defednant history prepared by the Probation department after 120 days from the sentencing; victim or defendant medical information, letters written from the public to the Judge, and the Judge's notes. A court order is required to get inside the sealed portion of the file.
The public portion of the file includes motions, Judge's Orders, clerk's minutes, and possibly court reporter's transcripts.
Reporter's transcripts are purchased directly from the Reporter. The remainder is purchased from the Criminal Court Clerk. Although all criminal court appearances have a court reporter present, the actual transcripts are only prepared if someone has requested them.
Cost is going to be between $1 and many hundreds of dollars, depending on what is there. Without reporter's transcripts, the cost is usually less than $25.

Quote:
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Yes, I know the CA County where he was convicted.
Ive checked their site, there are no case information online but they offer to get copies of documents from a criminal case requesting it in person or in writing via the mail.

Is getting a copy of his case file confidential?
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