Author: Katie Burke

Garbage Hauler Loses Defamation Claim

A California appeals court has expanded the First Amendment protections to a private consultant, over defamation claims against him in a report for a garbage hauling company that allegedly defamed a competitor. The First District Court of Appeal threw out a…

105-Year Sentence Reversed Over Jury Instruction

A 105-year-to-life sentence cannot stand because standard jury instructions asked jurors to determine whether, based on his prior sex offense conviction, the defendant had a propensity to commit future sex offenses, a California appellate court has ruled. The Fresno-based Fifth District…

Three-Strike Resentencing Ordered

A Monterey man charged with possession of a firearm for his third felony is eligible for resentencing, California’s Sixth District Court of Appeals ruled last week. On April 23, 2010, the state charged William L. Burnes, Jr. with possession of…

Family Court Authority Bolstered

When a mentally ill mother is found unfit to care for her two children, and their father is capable of caring for them, the custody case belongs not in juvenile court but in family court, said a California appeals court last week.…