When you have a brain tumor, you don’t go to a kidney specialist. When you’ve been accused of a crime, why would you go to a lawyer who does family law, immigration law and — oh, yeah — criminal defense.
I practice only criminal defense, in both State Adult, State Juvenile, and Federal Courts. I am also a member of several criminal law professional groups, including that I currently serve on the Board of Governors for the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, where I also sit on the Legislative Committee.
I handle violent crimes, gang crimes, weapons charges, drug crimes (including medical marijuana), sex crimes, and more.:
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- Juvenile Crimes
I practice in both State and Federal courts and I focus on one thing: criminal defense. If you have a problem with your kidneys, you don’t go to a stomach doctor; if you going to have a baby, you don’t trust your foot doctor with your unborn baby’s care. Why should you go to an attorney who practices criminal law and family law and immigration law and…
I practice one kind of law: criminal defense.
Areas of Criminal Defense Include:
I am licensed to practice in the State of California and in both the Northern and Eastern District Courts of California for the United States of America (i.e., the Federal Court). My reputation has caused some judges to appoint cases to me, even though I am a private practice attorney. In addition, judges and other attorneys have asked for my help, requesting me to write amicus curiae briefs in cases on which I am not the “attorney of record.” Other attorneys respect me enough to refer clients to me. I have a substantial list of satisfied clients in Kings, Tulare, Fresno and Madera Counties.
A number of Fresno-area criminal defense attorneys will be willing to take your medical marijuana case, mistakenly believing that it’s just like any other kind of criminal defense case.
Medical marijuana is rightly considered to be a specialized type of criminal defense. Partly, this is because unlike other areas of criminal defense, the best defense here is an offense. Many criminal defense attorneys believe they can sleep-walk through the preliminary examination in a medical marijuana case, just as so many of them do in a “regular” criminal defense case. It’s no secret that a majority of preliminary examinations result in a holding order; in other words, you lose the prelim, and start prepping for trial.
Medical marijuana isn’t like that. With medical marijuana cases, you will almost always want to put on what is called “an affirmative defense” at the preliminary examination. This is because the California Supreme Court has said that “in view of his or her status as a qualified patient or primary caregiver, the grand jury or the magistrate should not indict or commit the defendant in the first place, but instead should bring the prosecution to an end at that point.”
I know how to put on a medical marijuana defense. I won’t sleep-walk you through the preliminary hearing. And if — as happens because judges don’t follow the laws on medical marijuana much better than law enforcement — we still lose at prelim, I know how to keep fighting. I’ve won medical marijuana cases at prelim; I’ve won them after prelim (but still before trial).
I know medical marijuana law, and I’ve written the following articles on the topic.
- Blowing Smoke: Proposition 19 & Medical Marijuana
- Toke It Easy, Man: More on Proposition 19
- What Could Go Wrong?: Still More on Proposition 19
- “We Shouldn’t Have to Investigate”
- Marijuana & The Rule of Law
- Stems or Bud? Proposition 19 AGAIN
- Pot Smoke & Mirrors
- Up In Smoke
- When Law ENFORCEMENT Doesn’t Like the Law
- Dispensing (With) Law: Strict Constructionism & Medical Marijuana
- Evergreen Update
- A Proper “Medical Marijuana” Defense
- Tokin’ Appreciation: Medical Marijuana & “Profit”
- People v. Jackson: The Judge Was High — The Judges Still Are
- Imagine If There Were A Law…
- Dammit, Jim! I’m a Lawyer, Not a Doctor!
- A Few Misconceptions Reconceptualated
- Using Marijuana to Legally Disarm Californians
I have earned a solid reputation among other lawyers and with numerous people just like you in crimes involving gang enhancements (Penal Code §§ 186.22(b), 190.2(a)(22), 12022.53(e)(1)) and gang substantive crimes (Penal Code § 186.22(a)). I have lectured and taught other attorneys about gang defense and the Street Terrorism Enforcement and Prevention Act. I own gangdefense.com, which I created because of my interest and emphasis on defending gang cases. I have had successful resolution in gang cases, including murder, attempted murder and assault. I have also helped defend people who are charged with violating gang injunctions and, as of May 2007, in every gang injunction case I have taken, the case has been dismissed, or the injunction was ruled unconstitutional, or both. (Please note that this is not a guarantee of the same result happening in your case. Each case is different. And I do not own any crystal balls — I wouldn’t know how to use them even if I did — so I cannot guarantee what will happen in the future.)
I have assisted in special circumstances murder cases and have also defended in attempted murder cases. Even as a law student, I was trusted to argue before the court to keep out all gang evidence in a special circumstances double homicide. After succeeding at that, I went on to assist in many other areas of the trial. I also have experience as an attorney in special circumstances and attempted murder cases.
…including Attempted Murder, Assault with a Deadly Weapon, Assault with Great Bodily Injury
I routinely handle cases involving assault crimes. In 2010, in one case there were 14 charges, including four charges of attempted murder, four charges of assault with a deadly weapon, and shooting at an occupied vehicle, among others. Even before putting on a single defense witness, the judge was convinced to dismiss several charges, including all the attempted murder charges. At the end of the defense portion of the case, my client was acquitted of all charges. While no attorney can make promises about the outcome in a particular case — neither I nor any other attorney I know can read the future — I have a proven track record of success.
Weapons crimes can be quite serious. Often, a weapons charge will be filed because you were found, or seen, with a gun and these can be difficult to defend. Not only does the idea of someone — usually someone accused of also being a criminal street gang member — carrying a gun down the street scare the average juror, but many times the case seems open and shut: you either had the gun, or you didn’t. Lately, I’ve handled some cases where the District Attorney filed weapons charges based on finding a picture of someone holding a gun!
But “weapons crimes” are not limited to crimes where someone has accused of having a gun. Sometimes, another crime (such as robbery) is charged, along with a weapons enhancement. Other times, it is the type of gun that results in a charge; for example, when the allegation is that the weapon was of an illegal type, such as an automatic weapon, or a weapon allegedly modified for concealment.
Weapons crimes, of course, don’t just involve guns. If you’re facing charges for knives, or explosives, don’t take chances with your liberty: call (559) 233-8886 and ask for criminal defense attorney Rick Horowitz today!
These types of crimes include charges for possessing, transporting, or selling marijuana, or other controlled substances, such as methamphetamine, cocaine and cocaine base, and even prescription drugs. For more on medical marijuana specifically, see above.
Some of the hardest crimes to defend involve sex crimes. Even though sex crimes often include very little evidence, juries are often impacted by the so-called “ick” factor. Not long ago, I was talking to a client who had been charged with a serious felony which was not a sex crime. In the course of the conversation, we happened to discuss a story about someone accused of a sex crime. My client’s response was interesting: “Ick!” and he immediately wanted to hurt the person who allegedly did the crime. Now, mind you, this client to whom I was speaking believed he was innocent of his charges and thought jurors should not automatically assume he was guilty just because he was accused, but here he was with this reaction. I pointed out to him that his was a perfect case demonstrating that just because someone is accused of a crime doesn’t mean they did it. “Yeah, but…ick!,” he said.
Juries will often react the same way. And, unlike the client mentioned above, they won’t even have the fact of being accused of a crime themselves to be able to compare it to.
For these same reasons, some criminal defense attorneys refuse to accept cases where sex crimes are charged.
You need a criminal defense attorney with experience handling sex cases and who isn’t afraid to take them on. I’ve defended people accused of sexual molestation, forcible oral copulation, rape, and other sex crimes in Tulare and Fresno County. (I will take cases in other counties, as well, but I practice primarily in Fresno, and these two counties are the ones where I’ve defended sex cases at the time of this writing.)
My representation in sex cases includes not only defending against sex allegations in the courtroom, but in assisting individuals with Sex Offender registration problems. In February 2011, I was contacted by the California representative of the newly-forming Reform Sex Offender Legislation (RSOL) national coalition to reform sex offender registration laws and asked to join the Legal Committee.
At times, approximately 50% of my case-load consists of juvenile crimes. I believe no other attorney in the Fresno area handles as many juvenile cases as I do, other than the Public Defender and the two conflict-defense offices (i.e., Ciummo & Associates and the Alternate Defense Office). Thus, I am very knowledgeable concerning juvenile court proceedings and have had success even at the level of detention hearings.
Juvenile cases involve a different set of rules and many attorneys, including criminal defense attorneys, do not have the experience to know them. For example, juveniles are subject to the Three Strikes laws in ways that are different than adults. The same crime that counts as a strike does not always count as a strike for juveniles. Special rules apply for juveniles in other areas, as well, such as Sex Offender registration.
Besides the issues involving criminal defense, those who defend children need to have some understanding of juvenile psychology, including both the psychology of young minds and the specific area of juvenile delinquent psychology. When I take a juvenile case, I don’t work only on the legal issues. In fact, it was my knowledge about and concerns over the psychology of juveniles which caused me to fight to change the Fresno County juvenile court system’s policies regarding the shackling of children.
Articles I’ve written concerning my experience in the juvenile courts include:
- Our Children, Our Future?
- “Our Policy Hasn’t Changed, Mr. Horowitz”
- The Shame of the Juvenile Court
- Three-Thousand and Zero
- I’m In A Funk
- Exoneration by Association
- Don’t Try This At Home
- Rant: There Are Days
- The Choices We Make
- The Judicial Reality Show
- The Marker
- Shackling Children Nothing New for Americans
- Step Away From the Wrong: Fight Over Everything!
- Shackling the Law
- Who’s the Real Monster?
- The Molestation of Justice
- It Starts With The Children
- Malice in Wonderland
- Don’t Blame It On The Donuts
- Teach Your Children Well (Part 1 of 2)
- The Nerve of Law Enforcement
I work on helping minors understand how their life choices may have created difficulties for them and what needs to be done to ensure they go on to lead productive, happier lives.
Don’t trust your child’s life to someone just because he or she is a criminal defense attorney. You need someone with experience defending children and older minors.
I have experience representing parolees before the California Board of Parole Hearings (BPH). I have successfully represented parolees at these hearings, making it possible to avoid a return commitment so that the parolee could continue with Proposition 36 programs.
When it comes to your life, you need a lawyer who fights. You need a lawyer who is knowledgeable. You need a lawyer who cares. When you hire me, Rick Horowitz, to be your criminal defense attorney, you know what you’re getting. My Mission is Your Life.
DON’T TAKE A CHANCE WITH YOUR FREEDOM!
CALL (559) 233-8886 TODAY!