Law Blog

As any Criminal Defense Attorney will tell you, being designated as a gang member can have devastating consequences, both in and out of court. And once designated and labeled a gang member, it is almost impossible to get your name removed from the CalGang’s System database. The CalGang System, for those who are not familiar with it, is a statewide database, locally maintained by several different law enforcement agencies, where information on suspected gang members is stored. While there are specific criteria for inclusion in the database, those criteria are extremely subjective and often not followed. The system is also supposed to be limited to law enforcement on a “need to know basis,” yet those in charge of maintain...

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While it seems like common sense that a person’s immigration status should not play a part in a civil lawsuit, last Monday, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Assembly Bill 1690, written by Assemblyman Mark Stone (D – Scotts Valley). The bill will prohibit attorneys and administrative judges from inquiring into a person’s immigration status if they bring forth a state labor, employment, civil rights, or housing law.

The bill’s purpose is to end the practice of using the fear of immigration status as a way to deter plaintiffs from pursuing claims that otherwise have merit. Supporters of the bill point to countless examples of employer’s using immigration status as a way to dissuade undocumented workers f...

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Currently California law prohibits the possession of a firearm by those convicted of a felony and certain misdemeanors. However new legislation would extend those prohibitions to those with outstanding warrants for a felony or certain misdemeanors.


The proposed provisions were amended not Assembly Bill 103 as one of many provision that deal with public safety, and are expected to be voted on by the Legislature as part of the upcoming budget.

The Nation Rifle Association has weighted in stating that the budget should not be used to push through major policy changes because it bypasses the public hearing process. The NRA claims the new law would violate a person’s due process as warrants can be issued without notice or hearing.As we ...

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By Lonnie L. McDowell, Esq. and Michael C. McDonald, J.D., McDowell & Associates, Attorneys

In the early morning hours of Friday, August 22, 2014, California State Senator Ben Hueso, (D) San Diego, was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol just hours after voting in favor of a bill that places heavy restrictions on the popular ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft, according to dailycaller.com. The Daily Caller reported that the California Highway Patrol stopped Hueso after he drove the wrong way on a one-way street. His blood alcohol concentration was reportedly a 0.08, just above the legal limit.

If you don’t already know, over the last couple of years, Uber and Lyft have gained a strong and rapidly growing customer b...

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By Lonnie L. McDowell, Esq. and Michael C. McDonald, J.D., McDowell & Associates, Attorneys

On Tuesday, September 9, 2014, the day after the violent and graphic video of Ray Rice punching his then-fiancée in the face, knocking her out in an Atlantic City casino elevator was released to the public view, Janay Rice has publicly and adamantly defended the man who hit her. Mrs. Rice has condemned the NFL for suspending Ray and the Baltimore Ravens for releasing him, as well as the media for invading the couple’s privacy. She posted to Instagram on September 9:

I woke up this morning feeling like I had a horrible nightmare, feeling like I’m mourning the death of my closest friend. But to have to accept the fact that it&rsqu...

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By Lonnie L. McDowell, Esq., McDowell & Associates, Attorneys

In a stunning defeat for prosecutors, the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that police need a search warrant in order to search the contents of your smartphone. The ruling comes as a result of the California case of gang member David Riley’s appeal of a decision of the California Court of Appeal. In that case, the court analogized that information on a smartphone was akin to information on a piece of paper which police could pull out of a suspect’s pocket and legally read. The United States Supreme Court disagreed and ruled that law enforcement officers needed to first obtain a search warrant before searching a cellphone’s contents.

This ruling is great ...

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By Michael C. McDonald, J.D. and Lonnie L. McDowell, Esq. – McDowell & Associates, Attorneys
As reported by NBCLosAngeles.com, Ricardo Medina, Jr., 36, who starred in Power Rangers Samurai and as the red Power Ranger in Power Rangers Wild Force will not face charges after stabbing his roommate to death with, what else, a Samurai sword. (The reports don’t actually indicate is was a Samurai sword, but it was a sword held by a Samurai, right? No?)

It is not every day that we hear of death by way of a medieval weapon, so it is important that we break this down with a full analysis as to what happened and why this Samurai Ranger apparently broke no code, or law.

What Happened:Reports from NBCLosAngeles.com as well as TMZ indicate t...

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By Michael C. McDonald, J.D. and Lonnie L. McDowell, Esq. - McDowell & Associates, Attorneys
A former Miami Hurricanes Bad Boy and Tampa Bay Buccaneers Hall of Famer (and Dancing With the Stars alum) known for eating quarterbacks for breakfast now finds himself in trouble with the law…again. As reported by TMZ, current NFL Network commentator Warren Sapp was arrested Monday morning at a Downtown Phoenix hotel on charges of solicitation and assault. Sapp was in Phoenix covering the Super Bowl for the NFL Network.

Reports indicate that Sapp brought two women working as “escorts” up to his hotel room where an argument ensued over money. The women say the argument turned physical, spilling out into the hallway. The women re...

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