Articles Posted in Court

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Massage handThe owner and operator of a massage parlor in San Clemente has been charged with sexual battery in a case that involved at least six alleged victims spanning from June to October, 2014. He was released on $100,000 bail and has a hearing scheduled for January 12 in Harbor Justice Center.

The man, who is a licensed massage therapist, is accused of touching one of his employees and five clients for the purposes of sexual arousal, gratification, and abuse. At his arraignment, he was ordered by the judge to stop working as a massage therapist and not to enter any massage parlor during business hours.

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Californians have just enacted the biggest change to the criminal justice system in a generation. Voters have approved Proposition 47, which will reduce most drug and many theft crimes from felonies to mere misdemeanors. This will reduce or eliminate thousands of jail sentences across the state.

Anyone who is currently serving a prison sentence that qualifies under this reclassification is eligible to petition for a new, lighter sentence, even if currently incarcerated under Californias “three strikes” law. Someone serving a 25-to-life sentence may, for example, be allowed to leave prison now with credit for time that has been served.

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A Florida cop was arrested Monday for the alleged incident, that all started at a gas station. The deputy was speaking with a woman and learned that she reportedly did not have a valid driver’s license, was in possession of marijuana, and had prescription medication that did not belong to her. She was also on probation.

The woman allegedly offered money to the officer in exchange for him not arresting her, but he refused the bribe. Instead, he followed her back to her home, where the woman let him inside the home and offered oral sex. The officer was reported to say that he had never done anything like that before, but let it happen. When he left, he told her not to tell anybody what happened.

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Siri_iPhoneIn a landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court, the justices unanimously ruled that police will now require a warrant to search a person’s cell phone.

Up until now, courts have routinely allowed the data contained on cell phones as evidence in a criminal proceeding on the basis that it prevents the destruction of evidence and for the safety of police officers in the field.

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In 2011, Laguna Hills became the 7th city in the county to pass a law banning sex offenders from city parks and private parks run by homeowners associations. This went a step further than the existing Orange County ban on sex offenders from parks, beaches, and harbors. The DA was optimistic that such a move would increase public safety, especially for children. They were also confident that the ban was constitutional.

The citywide ban instituted by Laguna Hills contained additional provisions, requiring the posting of signs at parks referencing the new law and establishing criteria for waivers. These provisions were meant to help defend the new ordinances in court. The ban of sex offenders from private, homeowners association-owned parks required the associations to specifically request that the law be enforced in their own parks. No associations had made such a request since the ban was instituted.

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Only one day after the deadly Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting that took the lives of 20 children and six teachers in Newtown, Connecticut, Marcos Gurrola allegedly took out a .40-caliber Glock handgun in a crowded Orange County mall parking lot and fired 54 rounds toward the Macy’s building. He stopped shooting and surrendered when two Newport Beach police officers on bicycles arrived. Gurrola was in possession of six magazines for his handgun, with even more in his car.

He was charged with 54 felony counts of firing a weapon at an inhabited dwelling, 2 counts of assault, plus two firearm enhancements. The reasons for Gurrola’s actions are inconclusive. He reportedly claimed that when he fired his gun, it made him feel better. Police said in 2012 that Gurrola told a detective he fired his gun because he was angry, but was not aiming at anybody.

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With tax day coming tomorrow, it’s tempting to make a few tweaks to reduce the amount of tax you owe to the federal government. But allow yourself to get carried away and you may find yourself in federal prison on tax evasion charges. The former city of Bell chief administrator was convicted of allegedly falsifying losses on his taxes, but that’s only half the story.

As the city administrator, he reportedly misappropriated taxpayer funds to pay himself a salary far in excess of what he should have received, and then claimed more than $770,000 in non-existent losses to the IRS to inflate his take-home pay up to $1.18 million per year.

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When a judge orders you not to drive, it’s a good idea to not immediately get behind the wheel as you’re leaving court.

At Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach, individuals charged with driving-related crimes such as DUI were brought before a judge who notified them that their licenses had been suspended. As such, they were no longer permitted to drive. As they were leaving, deputies followed them out of the courtroom to find out how they were getting home.

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On March 6, a woman described as “delusional” had taken her three children, ages 3, 9, and 10 from their home on a car ride that nearly ended in death. Her sister says the woman was “talking about Jesus and that there’s demons in my house,” according to a 911 call.

The woman had recently got out of a “domestic violence situation” in a different state, but apparently was having issues of mental illness, prompting her sister to call the police when she feared for the safety of the three children.

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Kerry Kennedy, daughter of late senator Robert F. Kennedy, was acquitted of charges of driving while intoxicated (similar to California’s DUI charges) earlier this morning in a New York courtroom. Jurors spent just over an hour deliberating the facts before delivering their verdict.

Kennedy was found collapsed over the steering wheel of her vehicle after swerving and sideswiping a tractor-trailer on a New York interstate highway back in July, 2012.

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