Resentencing for Felony Murder
In September 2018, California Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 1437, changing California’s felony murder law. Effective January 1, 2019, the bill will amend the felony murder rule and the natural and probable consequences doctrine in the California Penal Code to ensure that murder liability is not imposed on a person who did not actually commit a killing, did not act with the intent to kill, or was not a major participant in the underlying felony who acted with reckless indifference to human life. Most importantly, this law is retroactive, and provides a procedure for those people convicted of murder under the felony murder rule, or as an aider and abettor under the natural and probable consequences doctrine, to petition the Court to have their sentence for murder removed. A complete text of SB 1437 can be found here:
Winning a resentencing under SB 1437 is not easy and requires the skillful representation of an attorney who understands the law and is dedicated to your case. At Kravis, Graham, and Zucker, we specialize in post-conviction issues, including resentencing matters, and can make a difference in your case. Our team thoroughly reviews your records to determine if you qualify for resentencing under 1437. If you do qualify, we can prepare your resentencing petition with precision, providing you with the best opportunity for success. We are the experts in our field and can investigate your entire trial record, plea-deal record, and your other court records to find every legal basis for reducing your sentence. SB 1437 may be difficult for some firms to navigate but through our expertise, knowledge, and dedication, we have the forceful desire to win each case we handle.
Winning Your SB 1437
When you were originally sentenced, if the trial court determined that you were not a major participant in the felony, then you can be resentenced under SB 1437. However, in order to be resentenced, a petition needs to be filed.
In order to win your SB 1437 application, the first step is for your attorney to file a petition with the court that originally sentenced you. The petition filed declares that you are eligible for resentencing. In the petition, your attorney must include the court case number, year that you were convicted, and any supporting arguments and materials necessary demonstrating that you meet the criteria for resentencing.
In addition to the above description of what the petition should declare, your lawyer needs to establish that you are eligible for resentencing. To do this, your lawyer will need to include facts, proof, and legal arguments in your petition. Your attorney can also offer new evidence to support your petition.
It’s important to note that this isn’t a guarantee, and the government may oppose your petition. However, if the court thinks that you are eligible to be resentenced, then the court will hold a hearing. At this hearing, the prosecutor will try to establish that you should not be resentenced. If the prosecutor fails to do this, the judge will then order a resentencing. On the other hand, the prosecutor may agree that you are eligible for resentencing. After resentencing, you will be given credit for the time served.
Contact us so that we can discuss your case and how we can help you pursue a resentencing under SB 1437.
Contact us for a free consultation to see how we can help you.
Kravis, Graham & Zucker bring more than 40 years of combined post-conviction legal experience.