Posted by: Katherine Schwinghammer // Posted on: June 18, 2013
Public Intoxication, California Penal Code section 647(f), is, in my opinion, a very difficult charge for a prosecutor to get a conviction on. Prosecutors will usually bargain with the defense attorney, and are often even willing to give an outcome that results in a complete dismissal of the charge, in my experience. If the defendant is under 21 and this is their first offense, the client can often obtain a dismissal if they complete an alcohol education program specifically designed for young adults. Defendants over 21 can often have their case dismissed for attending 20 AA meetings, in San Luis Obispo County.
In my experience, prosecutors are only willing to go to trial on “the worst of the worst” Public Intoxication cases. (I’ve tried several of those “worst of the worst” Public Intoxication cases, and I’ve won more than I’ve lost. For a lot of reasons, it’s a hard charge for a prosecutor to get a conviction on.)
Today, I was able to have my client’s Public Intoxication case dismissed at the initial arraignment. That’s a nice outcome!