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To combat and prevent organized street crimes in the state, California imposed the Penal Code section 186.22 in 1988 as part of California Street Terrorism Enforcement and Prevention Act. This particular law related to its strict penalties to charge gang members is commonly called gang enhancement law. The law enables the prosecutor to charge a simple misdemeanor as the felony, and the felonies are subjected to increased punishment or conviction.
Implemented in the state to reduce the street crime and juvenile rates, the complex structure of gang enhancement law make it susceptible to manipulation. In some cases, prosecutors exploit the law to increase the penalties of a convict by associating him with a gang or accusing the crime as part of the pattern of gang activity.
If you are facing gang-related or violence charges, you understand the seriousness of the issue, and you should seek immediate expert defense. David S. Chesley is the experienced defense attorney, helping the clients involved in gang-related crimes to convict on lesser degree charges and reducing their penalties. Chesley lawyers trained by the gang experts know gang culture, the pattern of gang activity, and the gang behavior. The firm grasps on the California gang enhancement law, and an understanding of gang culture enables the Chesley lawyers to represent and defend their clients accused of gang-related violence successfully.
To convict a person for gang related crimes in general, the prosecutor must establish the following charges beyond reasonable doubt.
To convict a person under the gang enhancement law Penal Code 186.22(b), the prosecutor should establish the following two things beyond reasonable doubt, that
In the cases of enhanced law, the prosecutor does not need to prove the active participation of the person at the time that crime was committed.
It makes any non-member vulnerable to being charged for enhanced penalties and sentence if prosecutor proves that the crime was committed at the direction of the gang and was done to promote or benefit the gang’s criminal activity.
The available defenses against the gang enhancement law are the following,
If the underlying felony charges are disputed, it means that there will be no gang sentence enhancement. In this scenario, the Chesley lawyers can establish that prosecutor does not have enough evidence to prove every element of the felony, hence resulting in dropping of charges against client.
To prove you guilty of gang related violence, the prosecutor should establish that you were an active member of the gang at the time crime was committed. It is usually done with the testimony of gang experts from the police who work on gangs. However, a successful defense law firm like Chesley lawyers can find the loopholes in the prosecutor’s evidence, disputing the active participation.
Acting for the benefit of the gang is the mandatory part of the gang enhancement law. A prosecutor must prove that you were acting for the benefit of the gang at its direction. But, experienced defense lawyers can show that you committed the felony for personal needs and did not act to benefit the gang.
Participation in a street gang pc 186.22, physical violence to recruit pc 186.26, assault by means likely to produce great bodily harm pc 245- facing 7 years’ state prison, received no jail time.
Domestic violence is one of the most commonly reported in California and every year hundreds and thousands of domestic crime cases are registered.
Assault and battery are often charged together, but these are not interchangeable criminal offenses.
Being charged with aggravated assault (also known as assault with a deadly weapon), is a serious criminal charge.
When a suspect is uncooperative, dismissive or verbally indignant, some officers take it personally. People who have committed no crime suddenly find themselves facing bogus criminal charges.
A criminal threat is often referred as ‘terrorist threat’ in California even though the statute no longer uses this term to define the offense.
Multiple defendants each facing 7 years charged with smuggling prescription drugs into California from Mexico our client was the only defendant who received NO JAIL TIME!
Client facing 5 years for possession of deadly weapon we negotiated a plea for NO JAIL TIME!
Client facing 3 life terms for multiple felony counts of Child Molestation and Sodomy with child we proved the charges were fabricated by victims mother DISMISSAL of all charges at preliminary hearing!
Strike case: Client charged with possession of methamphetamine facing 25 years we filed a Romero Motion which was granted case REDUCED TO MISDEMEANOR!
Client's estranged girlfriend alleged Client broke into her room and choked her facing 14 years in State Prison we won at trial JURY ACQUITTAL.
Police allegedly discovered 3 bags of marijuana in client's glove box faced 6 years we filed a 1538.5 motion to suppress resulting in DISMISSAL of all charges!
Client allegedly sold rock cocaine to undercover officer faced 10 years following our argument client received NO JAIL TIME!
Client facing 15 years for Armed Robbery we proved misidentification Judge DISMISSED the case!
Rodrigo L. San Fernando, CA (Sherman Oaks Yelp Review)
I am truly pleased with my experience with the Law Offices Of David S Chesley. They answered all my questions and provided me with great advice and legal services. My case resolved quickly. Thank you!
Ricardo Esteves Los Angeles, CA (Los Angeles Google Places Review)
I left court yesterday with my last case being wrapped up. Two court appearances and that's it. He represented me in a couple of different cases and was impressive to say the least. Always a phone call or text message away. Confident and aggressive when he needed to be. Calming and thorough when meeting with me. Attorney Chesley did exactly what he said he would and I got the results I needed. He seemed to know all the right people at the Temple Street courthouse. You can always get in contact with him quickly and he is a great lawyer. I highly recommend his legal services.
Erica Geller Ontario, CA (Ontario Facebook review)
My brother was given a very caring attorney that was assigned to his case and we had very helpful case managers throughout the process. I strongly recommend David Chesley to anyone who is in trouble. I called in to get help on my brothers case and right away I liked their service. My brothers charges were eventually dismissed after the attorney got him into a program, now he could go on without the trouble of having anything on his record
Elizabeth F. San Diego, CA (San Diego Google Places Review)
I retained Mr. Chesley and his firm and from the beginning they were extremely professional both in communicating the status of my case to me, explaining the situation as a whole, and just downright taking care of business. It was money well spent for a job well done. Thanks again to David and Melissa others that worked on my case. I recommend this firm to anyone in need of legal representation. Don’t just accept things the courts force on you, call this firm and protect yourself.
Leon Hanley Los Angeles, CA (Los Angeles Avvo review)
I contacted Mr. Chesley and his firm because some unfortunate events had left me in a jam. Detectives were demanding I testify or be prosecuted for a crime I didn’t commit. (I wasn’t involved or even at the scene of the alleged crime when it supposedly took place.) Mr. Chesley explained to me that he had been through similar situations with his clients before and understood exactly what was going on. His response to what took place was nothing short of amazing. No matter how small my concern, Mr. Chesley addressed it in a timely manner. He advocated for what is right and empathized with me in dealing with the Court system. After meeting with the supervising D.A. and providing alibi evidence he was able to get me out the situation. I’m very grateful to have found him.
Britanny Givens Newport Beach, CA (Newport Beach Google Places)
I hired David Chesley for my criminal defense in 2012. he was recommended to us for is success results and his low fees. David is very smart and his professional legal advice was honest & much appreciated during these stressful time. David's knowledge, advice, and communication about what we were to expect was reassuring and beneficial to me. He charged me a reasonable flat rate and didn't charge me any surprise fees. In my case David Chesley was able to negotiate with the prosecution attorney for the best result I could hope for. He had success at getting my criminal charges dismissed with the judges approval. You will not be disappointed if you hire The Law Offices of David S. Chesley.
Andrew A. North Hollywood, CA (Better Business Bureau review)
David is very professional, yet very casual. Although it is typically not easy to speak straight up with an attorney, he is very easy to talk to. He replied to my questions quickly and was available all hours. Not only did he get my case resolved with a dismissal, he went above and beyond and got me an expungement without me even requesting it. He never beats around the bush and tells you like it is. At the same time is willing to work overtime to get the results you request. I would use David's services again in the future.