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Criminal Defense Attorneys

Redondo Beach Domestic Violence, Probation Terminated Early

If one has practiced criminal defense for any significant amount of time in the Torrance Courthouse, one will know there is a distinct difference between how the District Attorney’s office, the Torrance City Prosecutor’s office and the Redondo Beach City Prosecutor’s office handle their cases.  Some offices are tougher on certain types of cases than others and visa versa.  We respect how each office handles their cases.  They are all reasonable.

Domestic violence cases in Redondo and Hermosa Beach, however, are tougher to resolve than those in Torrance, Gardena or Palos Verdes.

In the following case, our client was arrested for felony domestic violence in Redondo Beach.  His wife sustained a cut to her head and a torn ACL, while our client sustained a deviated septum (in his nose).  Our client’s wife was an athlete in college and very big and strong.

After the client called us and described the facts, we expected the case to be filed as a felony.  However, it was rejected for a felony filing and the Redondo Beach City Prosecutor’s Office filed the case as a misdemeanor instead.  While Greg explained this was generally good for the client (to avoid a felony), Greg also commented that he may be punished more than if he were convicted for a felony, despite the case being a first-time offense.

This proved to be true, as after many months of significant negotiations, our client resolved the case with 60 days of county jail, 52 batterers classes and three years of informal probation, as well as other standard domestic violence conditions.

At the half-way mark of probation, Greg advised the client that he could request early termination of probation, but Greg said it would be a hotly contested motion and the judge may very well deny the request.  

Our client, a licensed real estate broker, however, said he needed to be off probation and have the conviction expunged to keep his job.

Our office therefore filed the motion for early termination of probation.  As expected, it was opposed with full force by the Redondo Beach City Prosecutor’s office, as is their right.

At the hearing on the motion, the judge began the hearing by stating she had reviewed all the documents in your file and her tentative ruling was to deny the motion for early termination of probation unless Greg could provide documentation of specific prejudice that our client would suffer if he remained on probation, as opposed to hypothetical or potential prejudice.

She then spent over two or three minutes explaining her reasoning.  She explained that the People were entitled to the benefit of the bargain and that when one commits an especially violent crime, one that she really was shocked to see filed as a misdemeanor and not a felony.  She tempered her comments by nicely saying, ""Mr. Hill, you did make a strong argument for early termination of probation, however."  She also went out of her way to comment that our client did a "fantastic" job on probation.  She even said she would reconsider her ruling in a few months if Greg had more information to bring to her attention.

When she finished her comments, she asked Greg if he had anything to add and Greg explained that he had the client’s employer's Discipline and Corrective Action guide.  Greg then explained specific portions of it that mandated discipline if one was convicted of a crime.  Greg also explained the professional licensing process and had the application in his hands and read how our client would have to have his employer sign the license renewal application and then they would have notice to act under company policy.

The Redondo Beach City Prosecutor interrupted Greg and explained that the California State Department of Real Estate already knew about the conviction because they wrote a letter to the Redondo Beach Police Department requesting a copy of the police report.

Greg responded that this correspondence did not establish that our client’s employer knew about the conviction.

Greg also explained that once our client’s employer found out about the conviction, it could refuse to sign our client’s license renewal application and our client would need to find a new career.

The judge then said she'd reconsider her tentative ruling and went back in her chambers to further review the file.

About 30 minutes later, she came back in court and announced that she was changing her ruling to grant the motion.  She then was effusive in explaining how our client’s batterer's program progress reports consistently reported his "exemplary attitude" and how he obviously made the class "a true priority."

She then explained, perhaps to the Redondo Beach City Prosecutor, that she would normally need to see demonstrable prejudice, but she realized that to follow that standard in this case would mean she'd have to wait for our client to be fired and then reapply for early termination and that seemed unfair.

So, she granted the motion and terminated the protective order.  Our client was extremely happy.  Our office then proceeded with preparing and filing the petition for dismissal under Penal Code § 1203.4  (“expungement”).

For more information about early termination of probation and expungement, please click on the following articles:
Client Reviews
"Thank you so much for putting so much effort in this case. We really appreciate it and we are happy that all turned out well." S.A., Torrance
"Greg Hill did an outstanding job on every level. He was efficient, thorough, knowledgeable, courteous, responsive & brilliant. He welcomed my input and my concerns. . . from the first conversation to the last - I always felt 'it mattered' to him." S.C., Rolling Hills Estates
"Thanks again for your hard work. We want you to know that we are very appreciative of all that you have done [on our son's] behalf. With warmest regards." L.H., Torrance
"Dear Greg, Thank you again for all your help. Your professionalism and thoroughness is greatly admired. I will definitely recommend you to my friends if they ever need legal help." V.L., Carson
"Thanks for investing in my case. I talked to other attorneys out there and they had an arms-length of attitude, but not you. Your intensity and interest helped a lot." C.R., Pomona