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Felony Probation Revocation Reversed

People v. Jackson Court: California Courts of Appeal, Docket: A164649 (First Appellate District), Opinion Date: July 6, 2023. In January 2017, Jackson was convicted through a no-contest plea of felony second-degree burglary and was sentenced to five years of probation, including less than a year in jail. In July 2020, he was charged with having committed probation violations in July and October 2019. In August 2020, the court summarily revoked probation pending a formal hearing. In January 2021, Assembly Bill 1950 took effect, amending Penal Code sections 1203a and 1203.1 and decreasing the maximum period of felony probation (with certain exceptions) to no more than two years. Sections 1203.2 and 1203.3, relating to probation violations, were not amended. In August 2021, Jackson unsuccessfully moved to terminate probation. In February 2022, the trial court sustained two probation violations, one involving a robbery for which Jackson had been charged and convicted in Alameda County. While declining to impose additional jail time, the court revoked and terminated Jackson’s probation as unsuccessful. The court of appeal reversed. AB 1950 applies retroactively, in cases not yet final when the bill took effect, to prevent a court from finding a violation of probation based on misconduct that occurred more than two years after a defendant’s probationary term began, but before the bill’s effective date. The court noted that the California Supreme Court has accepted the issue for review.

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