What is a Post Indictment Arraignment

August 27, 2011

PIA (Post Indictment Arraignment) Post Indictment Arraignment (“PIA”) is a hearing in which our Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys will accompany the defendant to court and schedule dates for motion hearings and jury trial. Typically, Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys will also have the defendant plead “not guilty” at this hearing. However, even though a defendant pleads “not guilty” does not necessarily mean that the case will go to trial. The vast majority of federal criminal cases resolve prior to jury trial.


August 3, 2011

Top Secrets of Criminal Defense Lawyers

July 30, 2011


New Attorney clients receive a discount!

July 30, 2011


Attorneys assigning their first case to the office of Chris Loomis Consultations will receive a discounted rate on their first case assigned through 08-30-2011.

Call the office for details at (626) 230-3137 or email us at Chris@clcpi.com


Drug Crime Defense: The Myth of the Infallible Drug Sniffing Dog

July 30, 2011

Defending people against the massive assault by the Federal Government called the War on Drugs in drug possession, drug trafficking, possession with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to distribute or manufacture controlled substances cases calls on us to fulfil our duty as dedicated defense attorneys to ensure the government has abided by the Constitution in the area of search and seizure, including canine “alerts” or dog sniff cases.

United States Supreme Court Justice Souter’s dissenting opinion in Illinois v. Caballes sums up our attitude regarding narcotic cases where probable cause or reasonable suspicion is based on a positive canine alert.

“At the heart both of Place and the Court’s opinion today is the proposition that sniffs by a trained dog are sui generis because a reaction by the dog in going alert is a response to nothing but the presence of contraband.

Hence, the argument goes, because the sniff can only reveal the presence of items devoid of any legal use, the sniff “does not implicate legitimate privacy interests” and is not to be treated as a search.

The infallible dog, however, is a creature of legal fiction. Although the Supreme Court of Illinois did not get into the sniffing averages of drug dogs, their supposed infallibility is belied by judicial opinions describing well-trained animals sniffing and alerting with less than perfect accuracy, whether owing to errors by their handlers, the limitations of the dogs themselves, or even the pervasive contamination of currency by cocaine. … Indeed, a study cited by Illinois in this case for the proposition that dog sniffs are “generally reliable” shows that dogs in artificial testing situations return false positives anywhere from 12.55 to 60% of the time, depending on the length of the search. … In practical terms, the evidence is clear that the dog that alerts hundreds of times will be wrong dozens of times.”

Our dedicated defense attorneys defend all drug crimes at the Federal and State level including:

MDMA (ecstasy), Rohypnol, GHB Selling prescription pills (Xanax) Cocaine and crack cocaine Conspiracy Drug cultivation and manufacturing Drug trafficking, transportation, and distribution Heroin possession and sales Marijuana possession and sales Methamphetamine manufacturing and sales Possession of chemicals for drug manufacturing Possession with intent to deliver and drugs sales False or forged prescriptions Police sting operations.

3 Myths of Criminal Defense

July 27, 2011

Criminal Law Myth # 1: “They didn’t read me my rights, so they have to drop the charges.”
When you’re questioned in custody, the police are required to read you your rights and offer you the opportunity to have an attorney present. However, the idea that charges must be dismissed if the police failed to read your rights is overly optimistic, and can lead to a dangerous false sense of security.

First, the police aren’t always required to read your rights before questioning you; that only comes into play during “custodial interrogation”.

Second, even if the police were required to read you your rights and failed to do so, the charges won’t necessarily be dismissed. In fact, they usually won’t. In most circumstances, if the police were required to read your rights and failed to do so, then whatever information they gathered during that questioning cannot be used against you.

Sometimes that leaves the prosecution without sufficient evidence to go ahead with the case against you, but in most cases it only means that your statement is excluded and the case moves forward without it. If other evidence exists, such as physical evidence, witnesses, or a police report, it may still be used in your case.

Criminal Law Myth # 2: “That’s entrapment!”
Entrapment has a very specific meaning in the criminal justice system, and it doesn’t mean most of the things that the average person believes that it means. In simple terms, entrapment means that law enforcement officers led you to do something that you wouldn’t have done unless they’d encouraged you to do it.

The fact that the government provided the opportunity to commit the crime is generally not sufficient to establish entrapment if you were ready and willing to commit the crime. This includes trying to buy illegal drugs or solicit prostitution from an undercover police officer.

Criminal Law Myth # 3: “My juvenile record is sealed.”
It’s certainly true that most juvenile criminal records can be sealed, but if you have a juvenile criminal record, chances are good that it has not been sealed unless you took specific action to make that happen. Although many people assume that juvenile criminal records are automatically sealed, most states require that you make a request or a motion in order to have your records sealed. If you have a juvenile criminal history and have been assuming that your records are sealed, check into the laws in your state. You will probably need to take legal action if you wish to have your juvenile criminal record sealed.

Appellate Decision Explores Limitations of California DUI Breath Testing Device

July 27, 2011

Appellate Decision Explores Limitations of California DUI Breath Testing Device

Posted: 26 Jul 2011 02:51 PM PDT

California DUI breath testing is not always accurate. A recent California Court of Appeals case focused on the electrochromatograph/infrared (“EC/IR”) breath testing device and the possible limitations of that device when it comes to taking “quality” breath samples.

In People v. Vangelder, the defendant was convicted by a jury for driving with a blood-alcohol level of more than 0.08% in violation of California Vehicle Code 23152(b).

At the trial, the judge did not allow expert testimony challenging the assumption that the EC/IR device samples only alveolar (deep lung breath) air. That decision was prejudicial error, the Court of Appeal held.

“Although breath test results are admissible if a reliable foundation for them is laid,” the Court held, “we think that such competent evidence of their potential inaccuracy, because of physical variabilities leading to poor data in sampling, should have been allowed to be considered, as going to the weight to be accorded the testing results.”

The court also clarified that the issue was not “partition ratio variability,” ref erring to the application of the standardized partition ratio calculation for converting breath levels to blood-alcohol levels.

Inaccuracies in California DUI breath testing also can be caused by equipment malfunction, mouth alcohol contamination and rising blood alcohol level.