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Anyone who is convicted of a hate crime in Los Angeles may be looking at enhanced sentencing. This is why engaging the right defense attorney is so vital. Contact us to begin working with an experienced Los Angeles hate crimes defense attorney. The prosecution will work vigilantly to convict you, and that means you need a defense strategy that is equally as vigilant. Experience counts when it comes to defending against hate crime charges. The practitioners at this firm have both the experience and the skills you need to prevail against these allegations.
What Is a Hate Crime in California?
Almost any crime, from burglary and assault to aggravated battery and murder can be considered a hate crime if it can be demonstrated that the defendant was motivated by bias. That is, if the prosecution can prove that the defendant acted out of hate for a certain group of people, then they may be subject to stiffer penalties under the law. A criminal offense may be considered a hate crime if it is proven that the defendant acted out of hate for a certain characteristic such as:
Both federal and state laws are designed to protect groups and individuals from this type of bias. In fact, these are the kinds of charges that the District Attorney takes particularly seriously. Hate crimes tend to draw a lot of media attention. Law enforcement and prosecutors feel a great deal of pressure to close these cases swiftly and with the utmost certainty. This means that they are especially zealous when it comes to pursuing and prosecuting a suspect.
That’s bad news for anyone who is being investigated for committing a hate crime in Los Angeles. The District Attorney and the police will use all of their resources to prosecute you. Accordingly, you need a Los Angeles hate crimes defense attorney who is equipped to deal expeditiously with these charges.
Hiring a Los Angeles Hate Crimes Defense Lawyer
If the prosecution can prove that a defendant was motivated by hate or bias in the commission of a crime, then they can tack on an extra one to four years on any prison sentence. This additional time can be a devastating loss of freedom and self-determination, making it vital to engage an experienced California hate crimes attorney as soon as possible.
The attorneys at this firm have represented numerous clients who were accused of hate crimes in Los Angeles. Many of these clients were initially unprepared for the onslaught of negative attention they received from police, prosecutors and the media. However, our experience, forthrightness and aggressive representation quickly helped them begin to defend themselves. Our practitioners understand the importance of meeting hate crimes charges aggressively. We do everything in our power to get charges reduced or dropped, giving our clients the best opportunity to maintain their freedom.
California Hate Crimes Laws
The state has several penal codes relating to hate crimes. Some are more frequently used than others. One of these is California Penal Code Section 422.6(a). This code makes it a crime for a person to interfere with someone else’s Constitutional rights based on their race, religion, disability or other characteristic. A person violating this code may be subject to a fine of as much as $5,000 and as much as one year of imprisonment.
California Penal Code Section 422.7 makes it possible for the prosecution to seek felony charges for a crime that would typically be a misdemeanor if they can show that the crime was motivated by hate. For instance, vandalism of a home might usually be charged at the misdemeanor level. If the prosecutor can show that the vandalism was motivated by hate for the occupant’s religion, then it is possible to charge this crime at the felony level.
California Penal Code Section 422.75 takes this concept one step farther by making it possible to add one year or more to any sentence if the prosecution can show that an offense was motivated by bias. Clearly, the state takes hate crimes seriously. If you are being investigated for a hate crime, then you must have a dedicated, competent Los Angeles hate crimes attorney working for you.
Make an Appointment With a California Hate Crimes Defense Lawyer Today
There’s no time to delay if you are being investigated for or have been charged with a hate crime in Los Angeles. Police and prosecutors tend to be extremely motivated to close these cases, and this can force them to make mistakes. Moreover, it isn’t always easy for them to prove the defendant’s intent, which may lead them to use questionable tactics.
When you work with an experienced Los Angeles hate crimes lawyer you hire an ally who understands the California criminal defense justice system inside and out. With experience, integrity and hard work it is often possible to get hate crime charges reduced or dropped. In some cases, it is not necessary to go to trial as it is possible to resolve these charges during the pretrial phase. However, this cannot happen if you do not retain the services of a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
The practitioners at this firm believe in obtaining justice for all of their clients. If you have been accused of committing a hate crime, contact our capable Los Angeles hate crimes defense attorneys.