Tuesday, November 4th is California's General Election, a time when voters will be electing
legislative officials and choosing to support or oppose several statewide
ballot measures. If you've been watching TV or listening to the radio
in the past several weeks, it's likely that you've heard campaign
commercials, including commercials telling you to vote a certain way on
As a criminal and DUI defense law firm, the Law Offices of Virginia L.
Landry, Inc. is passionate about new laws that affect the criminal justice
system. This November,
California Proposition 47 will be on the ballot, and can potentially have a sweeping impact on the
criminal system, prison populations, and the rights of non-serious and
What is Prop 47?
The Reduced Penalties for Some Crimes Initiative, or "The Safe Neighborhood
and Schools Act" will be on the upcoming November 4th ballot. If passed,
Prop 47 would reduce classifications for most nonviolent and non-serious
crimes from a felony to a misdemeanor. In certain cases, charges involving these crimes may still remain a felony,
including cases where defendants have prior convictions for serious or
Reduced classification would apply to the following nonviolent property
and drug crimes:
- Shoplifting of property less than $950
- Grand theft of property less than $950
- Receiving stolen property less than $950
- Forgery less than $950
- Fraud less than $950
- Writing a bad check less than $950
- Personal use of most illegal drugs
Prop 47 falls in line with encouraging rehabilitation and leniency for
non-serious crimes, rather than harsh and outdated punishment –
a trend that has been embraced in many jurisdictions and states across
the nation. This is why we here at the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry,
Inc. encourage voters to case their ballots for this measure. We believe
that reducing classifications for these crimes makes logical sense, saves
money on excessive prison expenditures, is fair to non-violent offenders,
and frees up prison space to keep the serious felons incarcerated.
If passed, Prop 47 will not only become law moving forward,
but will also apply to any individual currently serving a sentence for
offenses the measure reduces to a misdemeanor. Those who are serving these sentences will be eligible for re-sentencing
or release, but will first have to undergo a risk assessment and review
of their criminal history.
Should the initiative pass, the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc.
can help anyone who is eligible for the reduction from felony to misdemeanor
for the listed crimes. If this may apply to you or someone you love,
contact an Orange County criminal defense lawyer from our firm to discuss your case.