It’s possible to file a motion to dismiss in felony cases in California. The court system uses Penal Code 995 to allow this motion. Charges dismissed through a PC 995 motion are set aside. This means that an individual cannot be convicted of them.
Find out more about how to file a PC 995 motion with the Simmrin Law Group. We’ll go over the circumstances that allow for a motion to dismiss and help you file. Just call us at (310) 997-4688. Members of our team are ready to help you now.
Basic Information About Motions to Dismiss
Criminal defense lawyers in Los Angeles can file a PC 995 motion in cases involving felony charges. A lawyer can make this motion if someone is charged with both a felony and a misdemeanor. This motion will not work for cases involving only misdemeanors.
However, lawyers can use this motion if the prosecution:
- Requests a sentencing enhancement
- Argues that the crime involved special circumstances
Put simply, a PC 995 motion asks a judge to set aside the charges an individual faces in California. These motions are only made after a preliminary hearing for a felony offense. In California, the prosecution has to file an “information” to proceed with felony charges in court.
After the prosecution files this information, the defense can make a PC 995 motion. Note that this process generally takes place before pretrial hearings begin. It must occur before the defendant’s criminal trial starts. If the motion passes, the individual does not have to face a criminal trial.
Opportunities to File a PC 995 Motion
PC 995 motions only work in certain cases. A lawyer can work to get charges dismissed by arguing that an individual was:
Illegally Committed for Trial
Sometimes, defendants in California are sent to trial after their rights are denied at their preliminary legal hearing. Individuals’ rights must be respected in court. For example, defendants have the right to:
- Receive legal representation
- Have their preliminary hearing in a single session
- Question and present witnesses during their hearing
Note that this list is not all-inclusive when it comes to a defendant’s rights in California. A member of the Simmrin Law Group can review your case to see if your rights were violated. Just call (310) 997-4688 for help.
Committed for Trial without Probable Cause
Individuals can be committed to trial without sufficient cause in California. This is illegal. The Constitution states that individuals should not face criminal charges if there are no facts to support the accusation.
However, this does not mean the prosecution has to prove someone committed a crime to take them to trial. They must only show that there is sufficient cause to suspect that an individual engaged in a criminal act to proceed.
A defense lawyer can work to show that there was no probable cause to lead to a trial. A lawyer can take this step by arguing that the prosecution:
- Offered insufficient amounts of evidence
- Used illegally gathered evidence
- Did not provide evidence that favored the defendant
Showing a lack of probable cause can allow a lawyer to get felony charges dismissed in California.
Outcomes of a PC 995 Motion in California
The judge at trial court will consider a PC 995 motion in California and decide whether to grant the motion or not. If the judge grants the motion, the felony charges are dismissed. However, this does not necessarily mean that a criminal case is over. The prosecution has the right to:
- Appeal the court’s decision
- Re-file charges for the same offense
This means that you can face criminal charges even after the court dismisses them. However, the court does not allow this process to continue indefinitely. Generally, the court will only issue two dismissals for a criminal charge. After this, a judge may refuse to allow the prosecution to re-file charges.
It is also possible for a judge to decline a PC 995 motion. In this case, the felony charges will proceed to trial. A lawyer can help you work on your defense here in California.
Ask a Lawyer About Filing a Penal Code 995 Motion to Dismiss
Facing felony charges in California? Find out how you could file a motion to dismiss these charges under Penal Code 995. The Simmrin Law Group is prepared to help. Call us at (310) 997-4688. You can also fill out our online contact form.
Learn more about PC 995 motions with a free consultation.