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Legislation Would Provide Trial Courts With Wider Latitude To Recall Sentence

AB 124, as introduced by Assembly Member Kamlager. Sentencing. LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST: Existing law, until January 1, 2022, authorizes the court, when a judgment of imprisonment is imposed and specifies 3 possible terms, to pick the term that best serves the interests of justice. Existing law, after January 1, 2022, requires the court, in those circumstances, to impose the middle term unless there are circumstances in aggravation or mitigation of the crime. This bill would, until January 1, 2022, require the court, when selecting the term that best serves the interests of justice, to consider if the inmate experienced intimate partner violence, commercial sex trafficking, commercial sexual exploitation, or human trafficking, and if the trauma of those experiences was a contributing factor to the defendant’s criminal behavior that would make a sentence other than the lowest possible sentence unduly harsh. The bill would, after January 1, 2022, require the court to consider those factors in mitigation of the crime. Existing law authorizes a court, within 120 days after sentencing the defendant or at any time upon a recommendation from specified correctional entities, to recall an inmate’s sentence and resentence that inmate to a lesser sentence. This bill would additionally authorize the court to recall an inmate’s sentence and resentence them upon a motion by the inmate. The bill would require the court, when resentencing an inmate, to consider if the inmate experienced intimate partner violence, commercial sex trafficking, commercial sexual exploitation, or human trafficking, and if the trauma of those experiences was a contributing factor to the defendant’s criminal behavior that would make a sentence other than the lowest possible sentence unduly harsh.

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