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Deirdre Lynn O'Connor

Deirdre O'Connor’s Answers

792 total


  • Should we get a lawyer and what should our next move be? We've already reported him on facebook, both accounts

    To whom this may concern, For the last two in a half months, a gentleman whose name we believe to be Steven Chadwick, has been using Mr. YoungQuest's photos under the name "Michael Hunt" (nicknamed Mick) to seduce a 27 year old young woman who h...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    Is the man falsely impersonating another a lawyer? You have this posted in a section reserved for questions on lawyer's ethics. Are you asking whether the person should be criminal charged and what you can do to make that happen? Or are you trying to find out how to report a lawyer who is misbehaving?

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  • Can a not guilty verdict be overturned if a defense attorney lies to the court?

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    Deirdre’s Answer

    Depending on the facts of the lie and whether the defendant can be shown to have participated in the fraud on the court, there could be further prosecution or legal action for one or both.

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  • CA detain: Man w/title on house where I stayed conspired, accused me threatening harm. Police detained/released me b4 arraigning

    The papers the sergeant gave me said it was a detention NOT an arrest. Will this show up in criminal background check for employment? I am over 50 and have no prior criminal record or record of any kind. If it might show up, how do I get it sea...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    First, check your record to see if it is even listed. See link below for how to do that. http://oag.ca.gov/fingerprints/security

    Second, if listed you can do a Petition for Factual Innocence as suggested by other reply. However, you should first learn more about that (search "851.8" and "Brian Dinday" on this site and Google for his many helpful articles on this topic), and, second, find a lawyer with experience doing these type of petitions help you. Before you shell out a lot of money, you will want to consult with the lawyer to see if you have a decent shot at prevailing.

    Lastly, it is hard to tell based on the facts you presented whether you will be able to avoid involving the man who conspired against you. It will depend upon what evidence you are relying on to establish your innocence.

    Good luck,
    Deirdre

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  • Caught shop lifting at Kohls

    On Aug 8th I was caught shop lifting at a Kohls. I know stealing is wrong and stupid and trust me I regret it and it will never happen again. I was detained by the head of security. I had a shirt and skirt in my bag and I returned the items immedi...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    I agree with Mr. Lieberman. Although you did not ask this, I wonder if you are worried if your decision to not pay the civil demand increases your chances of being criminally charged. The fact that they did not call the police at the time strongly suggests that they have no intention of expending the time and effort to see that you are prosecuted.

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  • Best to suppoena the prosecutions witness?

    a 911 call was made from the recycling center by a patron while myself and friend visited center to recycle. the call stated me and my friend were talking about scoring and getting our fix ! when the police arrived they stopped me and friend and r...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    I agree with Mr. Kaman. You do not want to defend yourself. You need a lawyer and, as you likely know, are entitled to a court-appointed lawyer. The public defender will be able to review the 911 call, interview witnesses and plan a sound strategy for your defense. Naturally, you can and should play a critical role in building the defense. The way you do this is by telling your lawyer everything you know and following up as you go to learn what progress the lawyer has made.

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  • Can a case get dismissed and then refile if the Da wasnt ready??

    my hubby has been involved with multiple charges because of temporary insanity. the last day of prelim was today and they dismissed case because the DA wasn't ready...but the DA refiled. What are the chances that the charges will be dropped within...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    The prosecutor can refile as a matter of right once if the case was dismissed because DA was unable to proceed. After that, they are generally prohibited from refiling.

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  • My wife and I got into it the other night... I left before the police arrived. What should I do now?

    Basically my 16 year old son work me up sreaming that his 20 year old brother was going to beat him up. I yelled at my 20 year old to leave the house and then my wife got in the middle of everything. Things were pretty hazy as I just work up (al...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Do NOT show up to the station to chat with the police without a lawyer. If they police have enough to arrest you, they will come and get you. Given your wife's report, you may not be able to avoid arrest but you can be assured that any statement you give will ONLY be used to build a case against you. Either they will say "look, he's guilty because he admitted blah, blah" or "look, he's guilty because he lied about blah, blah." No good can come from talking to the police. Talk to a lawyer.

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  • Can I file an appeal for a judges decision? I applied to be let off probation early and was denied

    Hi I was convicted of petty theft with a prior (grand theft) both charged as misdemeanors, and was sentenced to 36 months probation I've completed 2 years and 2 months of the sentence went to court today and was denied early release because "I don...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Unfortunately, no, you are not able to appeal the court's decision. You do not have a right to early termination of probation. My guess is that the judge--rightly or wrongly--perceives you as someone who feels entitled to something you're not entitled to. Your best best is to find a way to show the court that you deserve this and would greatly appreciate it. You might want to lobby your public defender and/or your probation officer to help in making a second pitch to the court. Depending on your circumstances and how important this is to you, you could go the extra mile--e.g., do some community service on your own and get letters of support showing what a stand-up person you are now. Put together a list of places you applied and how you got shot down because you were on probation. Let the judge see all the good that you are capable of. Judges--even mean ones--can be moved and inspired by sincerity and gentle persistence. Good luck.

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  • My attorney does not seem to wish me to appeal my wrongful conviction. Soon, my appeal "window" will close. What can I do?

    I'm 59 years old and have never been in trouble with the law. And, took a deal because the D/A's office in Napa County is very good at CONVICTING people. Apparently not good at other details like arresting the right people.

    Deirdre’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    While you may not be able to seek relief on direct appeal, you may have grounds to file a Motion to Withdraw Your Plea pursuant to Penal Code 1018, that is, if you received a probationary sentence and it's within 6 months of your sentencing date. More likely, you will want to file a habeas petition allegedly ineffective assistance of counsel and/or factual innocence. In order to file a habeas petition, you need to be on probation or parole to satisfy the "custody" requirement and a constitutional ground--IAC, new evidence of innocence, perjury, prosecutorial misconduct, etc. There is no official time limit to file in state court as long as you act diligently in pursuing this remedy. To prevail on an IAC claim, you'll need evidence to show that your lawyer was not reasonable in advising you to take the deal. For instance, it could be deemed unreasonable to advise a client to accept a deal when the lawyer's failure to investigate the case left the lawyer unaware of critical information which would have tilted the balance in favor of going to trial or negotiating for an even better deal. In order to assess your options, you will need to sit down with another lawyer and carefully review the facts of the case and the terms of the negotiated plea. Whatever you decide you need to keep in mind that if you "win," you'll likely be back to fighting the case all over again unless, of course, during the habeas litigation you can conclusively show your factual innocence.

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  • If an expungement can be seen by a prospective employer as something I did but has now been dismissed, how does that help?

    I had a felony conviction for "burglary". The case was closed early and the judge granted me an expungement the same day. I heard that employers can see expungements and I should have it sealed. The clerk of the court says I cannot have it seal...

    Deirdre’s Answer

    A dismissal pursuant to 1203.4 never erased the record of conviction. All it does is change the current status to dismissed. Any employer who request your criminal background from DOJ will see that there was an arrest, a conviction which was later vacated and dismissed pursuant to 1203.4. Many employers know that a dismissal under 1203.4 is not a commentary on the weakness of the case but rather an earned reward for you having successfully completed your conditions of probation. The only way to have an adult conviction permanently removed from your record is to successfully apply for a Finding of Factual Innocence. If the reason your case was closed early and expunged was because it always was a weak case AND you can prove the reason it was weak was because you were factually innocent, you could consider that avenue. There are a number of hurdles and would certainly need the help of a lawyer.

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