The three-strikes law significantly increases the prison sentences of persons convicted of a felony who have been previously convicted of two or more violent crimes or serious felonies, and limits the ability of these offenders to receive a punishment other than a life sentence.
Violent and serious felonies are specifically listed in state laws, but also include other crimes such as burglary of a residence and assault with intent to commit a robbery or murder. Under California Three Strikes Law, even a non-violent misdemeanor conviction for theft, under the right set of circumstances, can count as a third-strike, resulting in a severe prison sentence.
You could potentially run afoul of the California Three-Strikes Law, and not have anticipated it previously. It could be that a previous juvenile prior conviction or out-of-state conviction has come back to haunt you.
Depending on the seriousness of the current and the prior crimes committed by the offender, the sentence can range from a minimum of twenty five years to a maximum of life imprisonment (typically the defendant is given the possibility of parole with a life sentence).
Whether you have “strike” priors with a new offense, or whether you have a first offense that can result in a “strike” on your record, you need an experienced attorney who knows how to handle all of the complicated aspects of your case. With such serious consequences looming, you need to consult Criminal Defense Attorney Paula Drake to avail yourself of your best defense.