Gang Violence Attorney San Jose, CA

A criminal street gang is defined as any group, association, or organization with three or more people that seeks a group identity, has continuity of purpose, and has members who either individually or collectively engage in criminal activity. Gang violence charges can include, but aren’t limited to, vandalism, robbery, drug offenses, and assault and battery. As long as a district attorney believes that the crime was done to assist or further the existence of the gang in some way, it will be deemed gang violence.

Gang enhancements are governed by Penal Code § 186.22. If found guilty of a gang-enhancement, the underlying felony charge will be increased by up to four years in state prison, and will automatically be deemed a “strike”. Gang-enhanced cases are extremely complex, and require a detailed knowledge of both case-law and local criminal procedure.

Both state and federal governments have extensive resources allocated to combat gang violence. As such, police and prosecutors are often quick to charge an offender with a gang crime. An experienced gang violence attorney will approach the situation aggressively, which is key for securing a favorable outcome. As part of his work with your case, your lawyer will examine the following three areas of attack.

  1. Is the defendant a gang member? In many instances, an individual hanging around a well known gang is not actually a member of the gang.
  2. Was the crime committed for the benefit of the gang? For example, a gang member who is a drug addict may receive a drug possession charge that is unrelated to gang activity.
  3. Is the gang cop an expert? Many prosecutors use gang cops as “experts” in an attempt to strengthen a weak case.

Brendan Barrett is a reputable gang violence attorney in San Jose, San Francisco, and San Mateo. He provides a solid legal knowledge base, constant accessibility, and outstanding customer service. Call or email today to set up a free consultation.

jury instruction for a gang enhancement