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Joseph Briscoe Dane
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Joseph Dane’s Answers

10,241 total


  • How can we remove On-line Arrest records (mugshots)?

    Was not charged nor convicted for misdemeanor. How can web crawlers destroy my reputation? Looking forward some legal expertise.

    Joseph’s Answer

    Newly amended Civil Code 1798.91.1 now says that a webmaster cannot solicit for or charge a fee to remove a mugshot. Unfortunately they don't have to remove them, but it takes the profit edge out... allegedly.

    Perhaps a stern letter from your attorney may prompt them to remove it.

    Best of luck.

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  • How to start the process of removing DUI from background check in California? (criminal record/driving record)

    What is the process including the first step to take for applying for possible expungement? I just want to be able to apply for jobs without having the DUI appear. OFFENSE: 2012 I have completed all required court obligations; money, wor...

    Joseph’s Answer

    California does not have a true "expungement" statute. What we do have is a dismissal under Penal Code 1203.4. If granted, it doesn't wipe the case off your record, but it adds a notation that the case was dismissed. That allows you to tell most employers that you have not been convicted of the crime, but it remains on your record and still counts as a prior conviction.

    Keep in mind that a dismissal under 1203.4 will not do anything to your DMV record. The conviction will remain there for 10 years.

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  • If I tell the traffic court judge (Orange County Superior Court) that I plead not guilty, can I have the bail amount ...

    ... postponed (and in payments) until the traffic case is over, since I don't have money, and since (from what I heard) it's against the law for the courts to have to make a traffic defendant pay first, while contesting a ticket.. I know, I can a...

    Joseph’s Answer

    If you have no prior failures to appear, most judges will release you OR. Should bail be required, they can give you time to post it.

    Just ask politely.

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  • My friend was arrested under a felony warrant (11350 (a) ), will his case most likely be reduced to misdemeanor due to prop 47?

    My friend caught a possession of a controlled substance case last year while already on formal probation for a prior possession of a controlled substance case. He bailed out but when he went to court they said a case was never filed. Early this ye...

    Joseph’s Answer

    Yes, it should be reduced to a misdemeanor. He faces up to a year in jail.

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  • Caught stealing at KHOLS no police were involved they sent a civil demand of $325 do I pay what happens if I don't

    I stole about 120$ worth of merchandise they took me and my friend to a room and had us give them the stuff back we did no police were involved they took our picture had us sign paper work took our drivers license information and told us we wernt ...

    Joseph’s Answer

    This is perhaps one of the most common questions on Avvo.

    It's not a civil "fine" - it's a civil demand letter. California law allows a merchant to demand up to $500 following a theft incident. These letters are typically sent by the store or a law firm acting on their behalf. They are all bark and no bite. If you ignore the letter, they have to make a choice - let it go or file a small claims case against you. I have never heard of anyone actually being sued if they ignore the letter. Why don't they do anything? Because lawyers cannot get involved in small claims cases and it isn't worth the store's time to pursue a small claims case over such a minor amount. There is one law firm in Florida that does nothing but these kind of civil demand letters on behalf of stores. They were quoted in a Wall Street Journal article as sending out over one and a half million letters a year, but they filed less than 10 lawsuits. Not ten percent. Not ten thousand. Ten. The odds are overwhelming that they won't do anything. If you choose to pay their demand, it just means they won't sue you, but it will have no impact on any criminal prosecution. Paying it won't stop criminal charges from being filed and not paying it won't make a criminal case worse or cause charges to be filed if they weren't going to be in the first place.

    Good luck.

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  • Is it legal to use deadly force on someone who breaks into your home in California?

    Deadly force on burglars in California?

    Joseph’s Answer

    You are unlikely to get an answer to this question and here's why... There is no blanket rule on the use of deadly force. Every situation is unique.

    Yes, you can use deadly force to protect yourself from being killed, but the use of force must be necessary or it is an unlawful killing.

    Nobody here can (or should) give you an absolute yes/no answer to your question.

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  • Threats

    If boyfriend physically abuses then says if you go to the police I'll kill you, would that be a felony or misdemeanor?

    Joseph’s Answer

    Felony dissuading a witness under Oenal Code 136.1.

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  • I believe a business entered into a transaction with intent to defraud. At what point can this be reported as a crime?

    I contacted a business to purchase some equipment. They provided me with an invoice, which I paid. As soon as the check cleared, they stopped returning calls and emails, and the equipment was never delivered. Online research turns up many other pe...

    Joseph’s Answer

    Although you may have well-founded concerns about their intent, proving it may be difficult. You can file a police report, but don't be surprised if they view this as an entirely civil matter. You know where the owner lives - presumably you could serve them with your lawsuit at that address.

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  • Los Angeles, CA - Sealing arrest record. Case dismissed in 07/2012, never saw the judge

    I was arguing with my roommate in July 2012 in Los Angeles, CA. The neighbor called the police and I was arrested, charged with domestic violence. I was later released without seeing the judge (case dismissed). i believe I am never convicted. I wo...

    Joseph’s Answer

    It is not game over.

    Penal Code section 851.8 does contain a two year time frame in which you must ordinarily file, but there is a provision under which you can file after that upon a showing of "good cause" and as long as there is not prejudice to the prosecution.

    If you are serious about potentially pursuing this, don't delay much longer. Seek an in-person consultation with an attorney that practices in the court where your case would have been filed. Be sure to discuss the pros and cons of even filing.

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  • Is it illegal for a minor to date an 18 year old if they were dating before he turned 18 ?

    My friend is dating a guy and he's 17 at the moment and she's 15 is it illegal for them to date even If they were dating before he turns 18?

    Joseph’s Answer

    Any sexual activity with a person under 18, even if both are under 18, is illegal. There is no exception for sexual relationships hat began before one of the parties was 18. It's still illegal.

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