Top five interesting pieces of pending legislation that I found in the 5 minutes I spent searching the phrase “penal code” at http://www.leginfo.ca.gov for the 2012-2013 session. The author of the bill is in a parenthesis with a link to their contact form so you can email them your thoughts.
- Old law: violate parole for failing to register, realignment community release rules apply
- Proposed change: violate parole for failing to register go to state prison.
- Why this proposed law sucks: adds to prison over crowding (Jerry Brown is about to be held in contempt over this), kind of stupid because the max time someone can do on the violation is 180 days, and there are many mitigating reasons why someone might fail to register .
STATUS OF BILL: Re referred to the committee on public safety.
JJC VERDICT: Bad idea.
- Old law: If the feds tell the county jail they want to place an ICE hold on you, it doesn’t matter if the judge says you are no flight risk or threat to public safety, you are stuck in jail until your case resolves. Then you are sent to ICE to deal with, defend against, or not, their accusation that you do not have legal status. This means if you are arrested for stealing chicken to feed your family (true story) you are stuck in jail and likely deported if you did not have the arbitrary fortune of being born on the US side of the imaginary thing we call a border.
- Proposed change: the county jail is prohibited from holding someone for the feds UNLESS the person has certain prior convictions (the least serious prior that will fuck you is a misdemeanor conviction in the last five years for a crime that is a wobbler; the others are what you’d expect, serious violent felonies, sex crimes, etc.) or has been held to answer on a felony.
STATUS OF BILL: “Sen of Third Reading.” Don’t know what this means, but, according to wikipedia, it may mean that a vote will be taken after the bill is literally read again? Does anyone know? I will monitor this because it is HUGE.
JJC VERDICT: Yes please. And also, can I kiss you Ammiano? Of course, I’d make it so no one can be held for the feds (you want to detain someone feddys go find them yourselves) but this is a HUGE start.
- Old law: people with homes do whatever they want in public people who look like they don’t get arrested for doing things the with-home people could do without being arrested.
- Proposed new law: homeless people should be treated just like everyone else and this makes it so according to law (aka the Homeless Person’s Bill of Rights and Fairness Act). Read the legislation for specifics, e.g. you can’t be criminally prosecuted for sleeping in public, eating in public, or even soliciting donations.
- Old law: This case happened. In short, a guy was accused of pretending to be a girl’s boyfriend (it was dark) to have sex with her when she realized midway through she wasn’t having sex with her boyfriend. Turns out, this is only rape by fraud if she were married.
- Proposed new law: Not surprisingly, people were a little perturbed by this “loophole.” They moved to plug that shit up. Now, it is rape by fraud if you get a person to consent to having sex with you by pretending to be their boyfriend (this law will be very helpful to blind people).
- Old law: D comes to meet an undercover vice cop to pay for sex. (And you say cops don’t lie?!) He brought condoms with him. DA will try to use the fact that he brought condoms with him to show his intent. Pretty straightforward. Likewise, D is seen on the corner waiving at a car. She is arrested. The DA wants to use the fact that she had condoms with her to prove she was loitering with the intent to commit prostitution.
- Proposed new *brilliant* law: The DA will have to WRITE A MOTION including an AFFIDAVIT justifying the relevance of the condom evidence.