-Client was charged with 12 felony counts for possession of assault rifles and silencers after Department of Justice agents executed a warrant to search the client’s residence and seized numerous assault weapons. The warrant was based on an affidavit which included false information. Mr. Sala served the prosecutor with numerous document requests to prove the agent who applied for the warrant had intentionally submitted false information. After documents were received that proved the falsehood, Mr. Sala filed a motion to traverse and quash the warrant. After a hearing was conducted during which a supervising DOJ special agent testified that material information in the affidavit was false, the court concluded the agent had intentionally made a material misrepresentation in the affidavit and redacted the false information. In the absence of the false information probable cause was lacking. The court found the "good faith" exception under Leon was inapplicable, quashed the warrant and suppressed all evidence obtained pursuant to the search. Subsequently, the entire case was dismissed.
-Client was charged with assault with a deadly weapon, infliction of great bodily injury and gang enhancements. He was facing 17 years in prison. After the defense provided persuasive investigative reports to the prosecutor undermining the veracity of several prosecution witnesses, all charges were dismissed on the eve of trial.
-The Superior Court granted a motion filed by Mr. Sala based on an unlawful search of the residence of a Bakersfield Police Officer. All criminal charges filed against the officer were dismissed.
-Bail was significantly reduced in two separate felony cases where bail had been set at $1,000,000 each. Mr. Sala successfully argued the exceptionally high bail was unconstitutional. After hearing evidence and argument presented by Mr. Sala, the court lowered the bail and our clients were released from custody.
-Client was charged with several felonies including burglary, larceny, possession of stolen property and a prior "strike" conviction. After Mr. Sala filed a motion pursuant to Penal Code §995, the court granted the motion and all felony charges were dismissed.
-The client was charged with a felony violation of Health and Safety Code §11366 and possession for sale of marijuana. Over 300 pounds of processed marijuana, over 350 marijuana plants, several rifles and shotguns and U.S. currency were seized.After the defense investigation and discussion with the prosecutor, the prosecutor agreed to amend the complaint to allege a misdemeanor violation of H&S §11358 for informal probation and 400 community service. No jail time was imposed. The remaining counts were dismissed.
–A search warrant was executed at client’s residence resulting in the seizure of over 400 marijuana plants; numerous sheets, vials and tablets of concentrated cannibis; currency; a semi-automatic pistol; an AR-15 assault rifle and hundreds of rounds of ammunition. The defendant was charged with felony violations of maintaining a place for the sale of marijuana, child endangerment and a firearm enhancement. The defense filed a motion to quash the search warrant on the ground the affidavit was wholly lacking probable cause and was not executed in good faith. The court granted the motion, suppressed all the evidence seized and dismissed the case.
-Juvenile client was initially charged with first degree murder with a potential sentence of 50 years to life in a court of criminal jurisdiction (adult court). After the passage of Proposition 57, Mr. Sala filed a petition requesting the client be tried in juvenile court. After an extensive evidentiary hearing the court denied transfer to adult court. Subsequently, after a nearly one month trial during which numerous expert witnesses were called by the defense, the court found the client not guilty of murder. The court entered a finding of involuntary manslaughter to be true. The client was subsequently released from the jurisdiction of the juvenile court.
-Client was charged with first degree murder with an enhancement pursuant to Penal Code §12022.53(d) and discharging a firearm at an inhabited dwelling. His exposure was 50 years to life in prison. Mr. Sala and his team secured numerous witness statements and retained a prominent forensic pathologist/toxicologist to establish the defense of self defense at trial. The prosecutor offered a charge of voluntary manslaughter and the court indicated a sentence of 7 years. The remaining charges, including murder were dismissed.
-Client was charged with felony DUI with enhancements for great bodily injury and injury to multiple victims. He was charged with a prior robbery conviction (strike). The exposure was 10 to 15 years if convicted. After Mr. Sala conducted an effective investigation and challenged the prosecution’s toxicology results, the prosecutor agreed to accept a plea to one felony count. Mr. Sala’s Romero motion was granted and the client received probation; credit for time served and 100 hours community service.
-Client was charged with 9 felony counts including criminal threats; enhancements for personal use of a firearm; child endangerment and 4 misdemeanor counts of brandishing a firearm. The exposure was 21 years in prison. After a thorough investigation and presentation of defense witness statements to the prosecutor, all charges were dismissed for insufficient evidence.
-Client was charged with felony criminal threats and domestic violence with an enhancement alleging the personal use of a firearm. He was also charged with felony failure to appear with an on-bail enhancement. His exposure was 16 years 8 months. After a thorough investigation , Mr. Sala’s defense team located several third party witnesses and a tape recording of the complainant that discredited her credibility. Consequently the prosecutor dismissed all charged offenses. The client pled to one count of false imprisonment and was released from custody with credit for time served.
-Client was charged with felony assault with a deadly weapon (auto), child endangerment and brandishing a firearm. The exposure was 5 years and a life revocation of his driving privilege. Defense investigative reports were provided to the prosecution resulting in dismissal of all charged offenses. Client pled to a charge of accessory for credit time served.
-Client was charged with 15 felony counts of uttering false documents and identity theft. His exposure was 12 years if convicted on all counts and sentenced consecutively. After the defense investigation and negotiations with the prosecutor, Mr. Sala secured a settlement involving pleas to several misdemeanor counts for restitution, 60 days in the work release program and 480 hours community service. All remaining felony counts were dismissed.
-Client was charged with felony hit and run and misdemeanor DUI, after a bicyclist struck his SUV resulting in her death. The defense retained an expert on traffic reconstruction who opined that the client would not have been able to perceive the bicyclist prior to or after impact. The victim did not have a lamp on the bicycle and was wearing dark clothing. The defense made a motion to reduce the felony charge to a misdemeanor, which was granted. The client entered pleas of no contest to the misdemeanors. Thereafter, the court granted probation, ordered 90 days to be served in the work release program and 100 hours community service.
–Client was charged with being an active member of Loma Bakers when he and another alleged gang member entered a convenience store. They were confronted by a person in the store. A struggle ensued and the person was shot by the other alleged gang member. Client was charged with attempted murder, robbery, a principal using a firearm and gang enhancements. He faced 25 years to life if convicted. Mr. Sala filed a 995 motion to dismiss.The DA conceded the motion as to the attempted murder charge and the court granted the motion as to the robbery charge. The substantive gang count remained intact. Ultimately, the prosecutor agreed to a misdemeanor commercial burglary charge with a an enhancement pursuant to 186.22(d) for credit for time served resulting in Mr. Sala's client being released from custody.
–Client was charged with vehicular manslaughter. Mr. Sala filed a motion to dismiss for lack of speedy trial. After a contentious and hard fought evidentiary hearing, the court found that the client's federal constitutional right to a speedy trial was violated by the government and dismissed the case.
–Client was charged with possession of a loaded revolver in a vehicle. Mr. Sala filed a motion to suppress on the ground his client was detained unlawfully. Mr. Sala subpoenaed prior police reports concerning the area of the detention to rebut the officer’s contention that he and his partner made numerous arrests in the past concerning possession for sales, weapons and theft offenses. The records reflected the officer had issued only two citations for simple possession and paraphernalia. His partner had issued none within 12 months of the arrest. On the date of the hearing, the prosecutor conceded the motion and dismissed the case.
–Client was charged with fourteen (14) felony counts alleging identity theft and insurance fraud stemming from an alleged scheme that she submitted false information on hundreds of insurance policies. After months of preparation and analyzing hundreds of pages of discovery, Mr. Sala was able to negotiate a plea to one (1) misdemeanor count for 100 hours community service and deferred entry of judgment. All the felony counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with felony conspiracy to transport and transportation for sale of over 1,000 pounds of marijuana after the semi-truck he was driving was inspected by the CHP. Mr. Sala provided documents to the prosecutor reflecting that his client was transporting the marijuana for a collective in Northern California and was compliant with the Compassionate Use Act and the Medical Marijuana Program. Consequently, the prosecutor dismissed all felony charges and agreed to deferred entry of judgment and dismissal of a misdemeanor charge of transportation.
–Client was charged with felony assault with a dealy weapon with an enhancement. The client’s exposure was 7 years. After the defense investigation revealed that several witnesses observed the altercation and verified Mr. Sala's client was not the aggressor, the reports were provided to the prosecutor. Upon further review the prosecutor dismissed all charges.
–Client was charged with accessory to murder. The underlying charge involved an unprovoked murder of a young male in a park by alleged gang members. After thorough preparation and discussion with the prosecutor, the case was dismissed in its entirety.
–Client was charged with first degree murder and an enhancement pursuant to Penal Code § 12022.53(d). He had an exposure of 25 years to life in prison. Client was charged with shooting and killing a man who was fleeing from the scene after attempting to burglarize a liquor store. After an extensive defense investigation the prosecutor was persuaded to offer low term to voluntary manslaughter and low term on a Penal Code § 12022.5 enhancement. The court sentenced the client to only six (6) years.
–Client was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and with force likely to inflict great bodily injury, and prior strike and violent felony allegations. Client was facing 16 years. After extensive investigation, the defense provided reports to the DA, which resulted in dismissal of all charges.
–Client was charged with felony domestic violence; assault with a deadly weapon; criminal threat and personal use of a firearm. His exposure was 14 years 8 months. The defense investigation revealed the complainant had made a statement to a nurse that Mr. Sala's client held his hand in the shape of a gun and did not state he used a firearm. Also photos of complainant did not reveal any injury. After negotiations with the prosecutor Mr. Sala's client was offered and accepted a misdemeanor for counseling, 8 hours community service and a fine. No jail. All felony charges and enhancements were dismissed.
–Client was on felony probation for an embezzlement charge. The Department of Justice conducted a search of client’s residence and seized 17 firearms; a high capacity magazine and over 600 rounds of ammunition. The defense conducted an intensive investigation and provided the results to the DA. After negotiations,Mr. Sala secured a plea to felon in possession of a firearm with the provision that the court would not impose any jail time. Client's felony probation was reinstated.
–Client was charged with attempted robbery of a woman’s purse during a traffic dispute. After the defense secured several witness statements, the prosecutor dismissed the attempted robbery and accepted a plea to a misdemeanor accessory charge for 60 hours of community service.
–Client was charged with conspiracy to introduce methamphetamine into a state prison. After negotiations with the prosecutor, client entered a plea of no contest and the court granted probation on the condition she complete 200 hours community service. No jail.
–Client was charged with first degree premeditated murder. Mr. Sala thoroughly investigated the case and effectively cross-examined prosecution witnesses at the preliminary hearing. Additionally, human factors experts and a cell phone expert were retained to assist the defense. Ultimately, the prosecutor dismissed the case for lack of evidence.
–Client was charged with deliberate and premeditated attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon and gang enhancements. Client was facing life in prison. Mr. Sala filed an extensive motion pursuant to Penal Code §995 to dismiss all charges and enhancements. The court granted the motion on the attempted murder charge and the gang enhancements resulting in the case settling for probation and credit for time served.
–Client was charged with six (6) felony offenses for possession of a short barreled shotgun, possession of a stolen semi-automatic pistol, participation in a criminal street gang, felony evading and gang enhancements. At the preliminary hearing, the prosecutor dismissed all felonies except the felony possession of a stolen pistol. After a 2-day preliminary hearing, the court discharged Mr. Sala’s client on the remaining felony count.
–Client was involved in a traffic collision resulting in multiple fractures to a female victim. He was charged with felony driving under the influence with a great bodily injury enhancement, along with a multiple victim enhancement. The exposure was 7 years in prison if convicted. The defense presented the opinion of an accident reconstruction expert, whose firm worked on the Fast and Furious actor, Paul Walker's fatal collision. The prosecutor who had previously insisted on a felony plea, offered a misdemeanor DUI at the readiness conference two weeks before trial, for a fine only.
–Client was charged with a felony offense of resisting an officer with force along with an allegation of a prior strike conviction and driving under the influence. He faced 6 years in state prison. As a result of Mr. Sala’s preparation and investigation Mr. Sala secured two minor misdemeanors for his client and community service.
–Client was charged with manufacturing butane honey oil after an explosion occurred during the manufacturing process. Execution of a search warrant resulted in the seizure of 53 grams of honey oil; over 3 pounds of cannabis; manufacturing paraphernalia; and 12 firearms, including 2 semi-automatic rifles. After extensive negotiations with the prosecutor Mr. Sala secured probation for his client, counseling and community service without any time in custody.
–Client was driving north on State Route 99 and rear-ended another vehicle in the same lane. He was arrested for DUI. The blood analysis reflected a BAC of .18%. After discussion with the prosecutor regarding the issues related to the blood protocol and performance on the field sobriety tests the case settled for a wet reckless (VC 23103.5) with a fine.
–Client was charged with two counts of bank robbery and a prior prison conviction. The client was on felony probation for burglary and had a potential exposure of 11 years in state prison. Mr. Sala’s preparation uncovered a witness who observed a detective place the client into an unmarked police vehicle. The client was taken to the police department where he was interrogated in the absence of Miranda warnings. Consequently, the bank robbery charges were dismissed and the case settled for probation and completion of a program.
–Client was charged with residential burglary. His exposure was 6 years in state prison. Prior to Mr. Sala substituting in as counsel the offer made by the prosecutor was 2 years in prison. Mr. Sala’s investigation revealed the client lacked the required intent to commit residential burglary resulting in the case settling for a few minor misdemeanors and community service.The felony charges were dismissed.
–Client was charged with possession of an AR-15 assault rifle with a collapsible stock. During a search officers located a high capacity magazine strapped to client's leg loaded with 20 rounds of 5.56 ammunition, and three bindles of cocaine. Mr. Sala’s preparation and advocacy resulted in probation, work release and community service for his client.
–Client was charged with felony theft of a vehicle and felony evasion which resulted in the client colliding into a building and thereafter fleeing. The prosecutor alleged the client had a prior residential burglary conviction and two prison priors. He was facing 9 years in state prison. The prosecutor’s offer was 6 years in prison with strenuous opposition to a Romero motion. Mr. Sala persuaded the court to strike the prior residential burglary; grant probation and allow his client to complete a residential treatment program.
–Multiple felony counts of possession for sale and transportation of methamphetamine and an allegation of a prior strike conviction were dismissed after Mr. Sala filed and the court granted a motion to suppress evidence based upon an illegal search by police.
–After Mr. Sala cross-examined prosecution witnesses at the preliminary hearing the court dismissed all felony counts of possession and transportation of several pounds of methamphetamine for sale while armed with a semi-automatic pistol. Client’s exposure was 9 years 8 months.
–Client was charged with assaulting an officer in violation of Penal Code § 245(d)(3) with an enhancement that he personally used a firearm within the meaning of the Penal Code § 12022.5(a). Complaint alleged client had a prior serious felony or strike conviction and had served three separate prison commitments. Client had an exposure of 42 years in state prison. After defense conducted an investigation and obtained radio transmissions undermining the realiability of the allegations, Mr. Sala secured a misdemeanor disposition for credit time served and dismissal of all felony counts and enhancements.
–Client was charged with battery with infliction of serious bodily injury. Restitution was estimated at over $15,000. The defense located a witness not mentioned in the discovery who corroborated self-defense. The case was dismissed for insufficient evidence.
–Client was charged with three felony counts of possession of explosive devices in a public place. Exposure was 6 years in custody. After an extensive investigation and negotiations with the prosecutor, Mr. Sala secured a misdemeanor plea for a small fine only. All felony counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with two felony counts of aggravated assault and an enhancement for great bodily injury Exposure was 7 years in custody. After vigorous investigation by the defense the complainant was discredited. The prosecutor offered a misdemeanor charge for community service. All felony counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with attempted murder; two felony counts of domestic violence; assault with a deadly weapon; criminal threats and false imprisonment. Exposure if convicted at trial was approximately 15 years in prison. After retaining an expert for trial, Mr. Sala successfully negotiated a settlement for probation and one year local custody. The remaining felonies and enhancements were dismissed.
–Client was charged with a felony violation of Penal Code section 273.5 (domestic violence). Mr. Sala was successful in negotiating a settlement that involved dismissing the felony upon completion of counseling and accepting a plea to a misdemeanor charge of disturbing the peace.
–Client was charged with three counts of premeditated attempted murder with personal use of a firearm and shooting at an occupied vehicle. Exposure was life in prison. The defense investigation produced several witnesses, including a credible alibi witness. At the preliminary hearing through cross-examination by Mr. Sala, the victims were discredited. Prior to trial the prosecutor dismissed the case in its entirety.
–Client was charged with 23 felony counts of possession of one pound of heroin for sale and numerous firearm offenses. Exposure was over 20 years in prison if convicted. After extensive discussions with the prosecutor regarding the legality of the detention and insufficient evidence to establish a nexus between the contraband and the client, the prosecutor dismissed all 23 felony counts. The prosecutor offered a misdemeanor trespass charge for time served.
–Client was charged with 15 felony counts, including vehicle theft, felony evading, possession of methamphetamine while armed, possession of a shortened shotgun and violent resistance. The complaint alleged a prior strike conviction for residential burglary. Exposure if convicted as charged was over 25 years in prison. Mr. Sala retained a forensic psychologist, which resulted in felony probation and completion of a rehabilitation program. No jail time was imposed as a condition of probation. All remaining felony counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with possession of a controlled substance and delaying a peace officer. After a 4 1/2 hour hearing to suppress evidence the court found the detention was unlawful and dismissed the case.
–Client was charged with transportation and possession for sale of 4 pounds of methamphetamine. A subsequent search of the residence resulted in the seizure of over 106 grams of cocaine. Exposure was 8 years in prison. Mr. Sala successfully presented evidence of the absence of proof of dominion and control, convincing the prosecutor to accept a misdemeanor plea for a nominal fine and no jail. All felonies and enhancements were dismissed.
–Client was charged with 21 felony counts of unlawful sexual intercourse, sodomy and distribution of sexually explicit images to a minor. After the first day of the preliminary examination during which Mr. Sala cross-examined the prosecution’s primary witness, the prosecutor offered and the client accepted one felony count for 350 hours of community service and no sexual offender registration. The remaining counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with several felony possession for sale and transportation counts of 50 kilograms of marijuana and 1 kilogram of cocaine while armed with a loaded .40 caliber pistol. Exposure was 10 years in custody. The case settled for a misdemeanor and 40 hours of community service. All felonies charges were dismissed.
-Client was charged with felony assault with an enhancement for great bodily injury. Exposure was 7 years in prison. After a hard fought preliminary hearing during which Mr. Sala uncovered compelling exculpatory evidence, the case settled for a misdemeanor charge and a fine only. The felony charge was dismissed.
–Several felony counts of criminal threats and brandishing a firearm were dismissed. The case settled for a misdemeanor and 100 hours of community service.
–Client was charged with six felony counts of fraudulently issuing prescriptions. After presenting significant mitigating evidence, all felony counts were dismissed and the case settled for several misdemeanor counts and a nominal fine only.
–Client was charged with felony assault with a great bodily injury enhancement as a result of the victim’s orbit being fractured. Exposure was 7 years in custody. At the preliminary hearing Mr. Sala vigorously cross-examined detectives, which resulted in the case settling for a misdemeanor battery and a fine only. The felony charge was dismissed.
–After a 16-day jury trial for first degree murder, the jury acquitted Mr. Sala’s client of first and second degree murder and returned a verdict of guilty only on the lesser offense of voluntary manslaughter.
–In a felony jury trial for gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, Mr. Sala retained several prominent accident reconstruction and engineering experts. After 4 days of motions in limine, the case settled for a nolo contendere plea for no more than one year in custody as a condition of felony probation. After an extensive 3 hour sentencing hearing, the court granted probation and imposed only 10 months in custody. Mr. Sala’s client had been facing 15 years in state prison.
–Client was charged with attempted murder, shooting at an occupied vehicle and gang enhancements. Exposure was 39 years in prison. Mr. Sala spearheaded an extensive investigation resulting in a plea to a violation of Penal Code section 245(a)(1) for probation and credit for time served (167 days). All remaining felony counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with multiple felony counts of attempted murder; attempted robbery; assault with a semi-automatic firearm and an enhancement for personally discharging a firearm. Maximum exposure in prison was 36 years 4 months. After Mr. Sala’s defense team obtained taped statements from prosecution witnesses denying that our client had planned a robbery, the case settled for possession of a firearm in a vehicle for time already served. All remaining counts and enhancements were dismissed.
–Client was charged with a felony DUI with an allegation of great bodily injury. The blood alcohol concentration was over .20 %. Exposure was 6 years in state prison. The defense retained an expert, which resulted in the case settling for probation and electronic monitoring without jail.
–Client was arrested after a stop and search of his vehicle resulted in the seizure of over 1 pound of methamphetamine. A motion to suppress was filed, litigated and granted. The prosecutor re-filed the complaint. Mr. Sala filed the suppression motion again and the motion was granted resulting in dismissal of the case.
–Client was charged with failure to register as a sex offender with allegations of two prior serious/violent felony convictions. Exposure was 25 years to life in prison. After investigation and presentation to the prosecutor of certain records, Mr. Sala settled the case for one misdemeanor count and a fine only. The felony was dismissed.
–Client was charged with Penal Code section 261(a)(3). The defense obtained a taped statement from the prosecution’s primary witness admitting he had lied to detectives resulting in dismissal of all charges.
–A former NFL football player, was charged with felony evading. The complaint alleged he suffered two prior strikes for attempted robbery with an exposure of 25 years to life in prison. Mr. Sala retained a prominent forensic psychologist who testified during a half-day sentencing hearing in support of a Romero motion. After the hearing, the court struck both prior strikes and granted probation. Our client was released from custody and allowed to complete a residential program as a condition of felony probation.
–Client was charged with transportation and possession for sale of several pounds of methamphetamine. Mr. Sala filed a motion to suppress evidence based on an illegal vehicle stop. At the hearing Mr. Sala presented compelling testimony from a videographer recreating the view the officer had of the vehicle prior to the stop. The court granted the motion and dismissed the case.
–Client was charged with two counts of attempted murder and assault with a semi-automatic firearm. After an extensive defense investigation, Mr. Sala persuaded the prosecutor to dismiss all charges at the preliminary examination.
–The owner of a medical marijuana cooperative, was charged with possession for sale of marijuana. After Mr. Sala filed and litigated a lengthy motion to traverse and quash the search warrant, the court granted the motion after finding 42 material omissions from the affidavit. The case was dismissed.
–Client was charged with 4 felonies including kidnaping, assault with a semi-automatic firearm and criminal threats. After Mr. Sala discredited the complaining witness the case settled for a misdemeanor for credit time served of one day, a fine and counseling. All felony counts were dismissed.
–The manager of a McDonald’s restaurant was charged with conspiring with his brother to commit a robbery at the restaurant. $25,000 was removed from the safe. They were charged with 10 felony counts including kidnaping, conspiracy, robbery and burglary. After an extensive defense investigation, Mr. Sala successfully secured a settlement for local custody as a condition of felony probation. 9 felony counts were dismissed.
–Client was charged with being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm, being an ex-felon in possession of ammunition, two misdemeanor counts of battery, possession of a controlled substance and hit and run resulting in property damage. After Mr. Sala filed and litigated a motion to suppress evidence pursuant to Penal Code §1538.5, the court granted the motion and dismissed the case.
–Client was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and great bodily injury as a result of an allegation he struck the victim on the head with a baseball bat. After Mr. Sala cross-examined the prosecution’s chief witness at the preliminary hearing, the prosecutor dismissed all charges.
–Mr. Sala filed a motion to suppress evidence attacking the constitutionality of a DUI checkpoint. After a contentious and lengthy hearing, the court ruled the checkpoint was unconstitutional and granted the motion. The prosecutor appealed. The Appellate Department upheld the granting of the motion, and the case was dismissed.
–In a jury trial Mr. Sala filed over 25 motions in limine attacking gang enhancements and substantive gang offenses alleged pursuant to Penal Code section 186.22(A). After two days of litigating the motions, the prosecutor offered his client felony probation and credit for time served of 31 days. All remaining charges were dismissed.
–After a 9-day jury trial of the son of Sheriff Donny Youngblood for possession for sale and transportation of a large quantity of cannabis, the jury returned verdicts of not guilty on all counts.
–After an 11-day jury trial of a double homicide alleging first degree murder with special circumstances, the jury deadlocked with eleven jurors voting for acquittal. The prosecutor ultimately dismissed the case.