Intimidating witness charges dating single men with kids
Penal Code 136.1 PC (California's law against dissuading or intimidating a witness or victim) makes it illegal to prevent (or attempt to prevent) any witnesses or victims of a crime from reporting the crime or testifying about the crime.
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These include Penal Code 422 PC California's "criminal threats" law, Penal Code 236 PC false imprisonment, and Penal Code 207 PC California's kidnapping law.
Penal Code 653f solicitation of a crime law may be charged instead of dissuading a witness.
In order for the prosecutor to convict you of this offense, he/she must prove the following facts (otherwise known as "elements" of the crime): dissuaded or intimidated a witness or victim.
This means that if you were unaware that the person was a witness / victim or didn't realize you were engaging in intimidating or threatening behavior, you aren't guilty of this offense.
Penal Code 422 PC You violate Penal Code 422 PC California's "criminal threats" law (formerly known as California's terrorist threats law) when you threaten to commit a crime that will result in death or great bodily harm to another person even if you don't intend to carry out the threat.
There are a variety of legal defenses that your California criminal defense lawyer can present on your behalf.
The following are examples of some of the most common.
Lack of knowledge / intent It bears repeating that if you either don't know the person is a victim or witness or aren't maliciously trying to interfere, you aren't guilty of violating Penal Code 136.1 PC California's "dissuading a witness" law.
Dissuading a witness and its relationship to Penal Code 186.22 PC California's criminal street gang enhancement If the prosecutor proves that you are guilty of violating Penal Code 136.1 PC California's "dissuading a witness" law "for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with any criminal street gang", California's gang enhancement kicks in.
A conviction under Penal Code 186.22 PC California's criminal street gang enhancement automatically imposes a seven-year-to-life state prison sentence if you are found guilty of violating Penal Code 136.1 PC.