Inside LADA

October 6, 2016: Gov. Brown Signs 8 LADA-Sponsored Bills Into Law

Gov. Edmund G. “Jerry” Brown Jr. signed into law all eight of the bills sponsored by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. They cover a wide swath of law enforcement reform.

This year’s legislative package makes the use of ransomware a felony, reduces legal technicalities that can have life-changing consequences and provides additional revenue for prosecutors. 

“The new legislation our office sponsored will protect the public while also improving the legal process,” Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said. “Our office will continue to strive for stiffer laws for emerging and violent crimes, and advocate for victims’ rights.

Signed by Gov. Brown, Senate Bill 1054 ensures that restitution is properly collected from county jail inmates. California’s Constitution guarantees crime victims the right to seek restitution from criminals who have harmed them. The bill also ensures that post release community supervision inmates are not overcharged by having both the state and the county simultaneously collect restitution from the inmate.

LADA also sponsored SB 1137 that makes it a crime to infect computers or networks with ransomware, a type of malware that restricts access unless a user pays a ransom to the malware operators to lift the restriction. Existing law had not adequately addressed ransomware.

Gov. Brown signed into law Assembly Bill 797, also known as the “Right to Rescue” bill, which provides criminal and civil immunity for people who rescue animals left unattended in vehicles.

Co-sponsored by The Humane Society of the United States, the new law says a person can use forcible entry into a vehicle if there is no reasonable way to remove the animal, and law enforcement was notified before trying to get the animal out.

For more than a decade, LADA has conducted a public awareness campaign about the danger of leaving pets inside vehicles in hot weather.

AB 1854 will help restore funding for costs incurred by prosecutorial agencies that litigate bail forfeiture motions. Attorney fees can pile up when a defendant fails to appear in court and the bail forfeiture is challenged. The bill allows prosecutorial offices and county counsels to recoup the cost of litigation from the forfeited bail money when they have successfully opposed a motion to vacate a bail forfeiture.

Gov. Brown also approved SB 1242 that provides relief for undocumented immigrants who have committed low-level misdemeanors. The bill will clear up any discrepancies between state and federal law on non-deportable offenses prior to January 2015.

Other LADA sponsored bills signed by Gov. Brown include:

  • SB 420 divides California’s prostitution law into separate sections so accurate statistics about the numbers of commercial sex workers and those who solicit them can be obtained.
  • AB 1906 creates statutory deadlines for the Department of State Hospitals to provide filing materials to prosecutors in sexually violent predator cases.
  • AB 1924 increases the time period a court order for the use of pen registers and trap and trace devices are valid from 10 days to 60 days.