Kelly C. Quinn is an experienced criminal lawyer with over 15 years experience representing clients in all types of state and federal criminal cases. Ms. Quinn has a special expertise in researching and drafting motions, writs, and appeals. She has successfully overturned several convictions, and her motion practice has resulted in numerous serious felony cases being dismissed.
Formerly employed by outside counsel for the National Rifle Association "NRA" and California Rifle and Pistol Association "CRPA", Ms. Quinn also has a special expertise in firearms law and has successfully represented gun owners in federal and state cases involving allegations of illegal firearm possession, unlawful firearm dealing, and possessing or manufacturing explosive devices.
A former substitute special education teacher, Ms. Quinn represents students with disabilities in all stages of IEP proceedings and is very active in the legal fight to make sure that each child is receiving all protections available under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Ms. Quinn also represents students in school discipline hearings, including suspension and expulsion hearings.
How to Apply Proposition 47's Reclassification and Firearms Provisions, Los Angeles Lawyer, March, 2015
Incident to Arrest, Los Angeles Lawyer, June, 2013
Just Taking, Property is Frequently Frozen in Criminal Proceedings in Violation of Due Process Protections, Los Angeles Lawyer, July/August, 2011
International Extradition and Constitutional Rights: Time For Change, White Collar Crime Committee Newsletter, May, 2007
People v. Eubanks, 25 Pepp. L. Rev. 256, 1997
People v. Bright, 24 Pepp. L. Rev. 1106, 1997
People v. Romero, 24 Pepp.L.Rev. 1421
Carlin v. Superior Court (Upjohn Co.), 25 Pepp.L.Rev.350
City of San Diego v. Kevin B., 118 Cal.App.4th 933 (Court of Appeal, Fourth District, Division 1, California 2004)
Osman v. Appellate Div. of Superior Court of Los Angeles County, 2005 WL 3061940 (Court of Appeal, Second District, California 2005)
People v. Graff, 170 Cal. App.4th 345, 360 (2009)
A variety of recent changes to California law offer relief to people who have suffered criminal convictions.
PENAL CODE SECTION 1170(d)(2), FAIR SENTENCING FOR YOUTH ACT
The Fair Sentencing for Youth Act (previously Senate Bill 9) was signed into law in January of 2013, and gives juvenile offenders who were sentenced to life without parole a chance for release after serving twenty-five years in state prison. Drawing from recent Supreme Court cases Miller v. Alabama and Roper v. Simmons—which require that children and adults be treated differently at sentencing—this new law recognizes that children have a heightened capacity for change and rehabilitation.
Under the Fair Sentencing for Youth Act, juvenile offenders who were sentenced to life without parole may petition the court for a resentencing hearing after serving at least fifteen years in state prison. If the judge grants the petition, the court will conduct a resentencing hearing where the court may impose a sentence of twenty-five years to life. If you or a loved one may qualify to petition for a resentencing hearing, please contact our associate, Elizabeth Little, for a case evaluation.
SENATE BILL 260 & SENATE BILL 261, YOUTH OFFENDER PAROLE HEARINGS
Two recently enacted laws, Senate Bill 260 and Senate Bill 261, have significantly altered the parole process for individuals who are serving state prison sentences for crimes committed under the age of 23. These new laws give young offenders serving harsh sentences a meaningful opportunity for release by creating a special youth offender parole process.
Senate Bill 260 went into effect on January 1, 2014, and requires the Board of Parole Hearings to conduct youth offender parole hearings for individuals who were sentenced to state prison time for crimes they committed under the age of 18. Just one year later, SB 260 was signed into law, extending the youth offender parole process to individuals who were under the age of 23 at the time of their crime. Youth offender parole hearings provide individuals with the opportunity to demonstrate personal growth and rehabilitation, and show that they deserve a second chance.
As a result of these new laws, there are over 10,000 people currently eligible for a youth offender parole hearing in California. For more information regarding how our office may be able to help, please contact our associate, Elizabeth Little. While attending the University of Southern California Gould School of Law, Ms. Little assisted in the drafting of the regulations that implement the youth offender parole process under Senate Bill 260 and Senate Bill 261.
PROPOSITION 47 RESENTENCING
Proposition 47 (“Prop 47”) passed on November 5, 2014, enacting sweeping changes to the Penal Code. Prop 47 provides that certain drug and theft crimes which were previously felonies or wobblers (crimes that can be charged as either felonies or misdemeanors), may now be charged only as misdemeanors.
Prop 47 applies retroactively to persons who are currently serving a sentence for a conviction for one of the listed crimes. It also allows a person who has already completed their sentence to petition the trial court to reduce their felony conviction to a misdemeanor. This change in the law has resulted in immediate benefits for many defendants by allowing for early release from custody, termination of probation or parole, and the reduction of numerous qualifying felonies to misdemeanors.
A more detailed summary of this proposition is set forth in the attached article co-authored by Werksman Jackson Hathaway and Quinn partner Kelly Quinn. The law provides for a deadline to file Prop 47 petitions; if you or a loved one think you may qualify for resentencing, please contact our office for more information regarding how we may be able to help.
PROPOSITION 36, THREE STRIKES RESENTENCING
In November of 2012, California voters passed Proposition 36 ("Prop 36"), which significantly altered the “three strikes” law. Prior to the passage of Prop 36, a defendant with two strikes for serious or violent felonies, could be sentenced to 25 years to life if convicted of any felony, even if the new offense was not serious or violent. This led to many defendants receiving 25 years to life for minor offenses, including petty theft. After the passage of Prop 36, most defendants will only get 25 years to life if his/her third felony conviction is also for a serious or violent crime.
This change in the law applies retroactively to persons who have already been sentenced and are serving time in custody. If you believe that you or a loved one were sentenced under the old “three strikes” law, you may qualify to petition the court for resentencing. Please contact our office for an evaluation.