Parking Placard Fraud, County Fair, Pomona, Office Hearing
Our client, age 26, had a bright future ahead of her. She was a nursing student, studying to become a registered nurse (RN).
She and her boyfriend decided to go to the L.A. County fair in Pomona. The two drove into the parking lot and saw a huge parking lot with no spaces open except those toward the front for disabled persons.
Our client’s boyfriend then suggested they use his father’s disabled parking placard and park toward the front to cut down on their walk. Our client agreed and pulled right into one of the nearby spots. No sooner had the two gotten out of their car and turned to walk toward the ticket booths than a police officer approached them to ask them about the disabled person parking placard they had placed in their windshield.
Our client was devastated. She conceded that she was the driver of the car and that it was her car. She was then issued a citation for a misdemeanor violation of Vehicle Code § 4461(c), improper use or display of a disabled person parking placard. Such a citation was especially painful for her, as she was intending to enter a profession premised upon helping the sick, injured and disabled.
The client and her boyfriend returned home, confused. They did what many people do – they opened up their computer and searched on Google what the consequences of such a violation were for a registered nurse and for anyone else.
The client then called Greg Hill & Associates and discussed her case with Greg Hill. Greg listened to what the client described as having taken place and then explained what the client faced in court. Greg explained that in other courts, this type of violation had been resolved with a tough judge sympathetic to the disabled because his wife was disabled. In that case, our client was granted judicial diversion, but with 200 hours of community service.
Greg explained further that the judicial diversion program had ended on January 1, 2017, so it would not be available for the client.
However, Greg said he would request an office hearing for the client, as this type of violation for a future registered nurse was extremely serious, but she had no prior criminal history. Regardless of whether the prosecutor granted this request, Greg recommended that the client take an online “thinking errors” class and give him the proof of completion certificate to take to court. He also suggested that the client’s boyfriend write a letter to whom it may concern that the idea to use the placard was his and not our client’s.
Greg then wrote the Pomona District Attorney’s office, requesting an office hearing in light of our client’s age, lack of any prior criminal history and her career ambitions.
About two weeks later, our client received a letter from the Pomona District Attorney’s office advising her that the matter had been set for an office hearing at the district attorney’s office.
Greg Hill and the client then went to the Pomona District Attorney’s office for the office hearing on the stated date in the notice. Much to the client’s relief, the prosecutor’s office decided to allow our client to “earn a dismissal” by performing just ten hours of approved community service. It was quite a relief for our client.
She then performed such community service and submitted her proof of this to the district attorney’s office. About two weeks later, the district attorney’s office announced that they would not proceed with a criminal filing against the client.