Factors That Determine Attempted PC 664/187 Murder Charges

There are many prosecutions for PC 664/187 attempted murder cases in Los Angeles County, especially in the San Fernando Valley area. The main two courts in the Valley that deal with attempted murder cases are Van Nuys and San Fernando courthouses.  Van Nuys controls the west Valley and the center part of the Valley.

San Fernando Court is in charge of the north end of the San Fernando Valley. When they're getting people for attempted murder cases, the prosecutors say that they believe the person they're charging tried to kill the alleged victim in the case. California Penal Code 664/187 PC defines the crime of attempted murder.

You're going to have to have some pretty severe behavior.  Usually, where I see attempted murder cases is when you have a situation where someone fires a weapon at another person.  That will get you an attempted murder charge.

Beyond that, you're going to have to have pretty violent behavior — may be a knife being used, stabbing somebody multiple times.  Another area I see is when you have a situation where somebody is choking another person, and they choke enough to make their eyes a little red.

How are Attempted Murder Cases Prosecuted in Los Angeles?

That usually gives the prosecutors an indication that they were trying to strangle the person.  So, you can see that you need to have severe behavior. A long time ago, there was a case where a truck driver — during the Los Angeles riots — named Reginald Denny was attacked, pulled out of his truck, and beaten multiple times.  It was captured on videotape.

That case was prosecuted for attempted murder, but ultimately there was a not-guilty verdict for attempted murder because the perpetrator broke off the attack before he died. 

So, you could see that he could have killed him, but he just hit him a couple of times and stopped attacking him.  So, the defense argued that he wasn't trying to kill him because he stopped attacking him.

What Are the Penalties for Attempted Murder?

I think the standard is pretty high for attempted murder because if you get convicted of attempted premeditated murder in one of the Los Angeles Courts,  you're looking at 15 to live.  In California, 15 to life means 15 to life.

Many people were not getting out if they had any light sentence attacked to attempted murder.  Now, that's changed to a degree, and some people can get out if the parole board lets them out. The issue becomes, you'd have to serve 85% of 15-year sand then you'd be eligible for parole, and then the parole board could let you out, or they could deny your parole, and you come up each year after that.

Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer

So, you start to get the feeling that if you or a loved one is charged with attempted murder (CALCRIM 600), you're going to want an attorney who has a lot of experience.   I've handled hundreds of these cases over the last 26 years.  I don't prosecute them.  I defend them. So, anyone claiming that they're a former prosecutor, in my opinion, who cares.  You want somebody that's been a defense attorney. 

That's pretty much all I've done for the last 26 years is defend people charged with crimes. So, I could give you or your loved one a pretty good idea of what they're facing when it comes to an attempted murder charge, whether or not the prosecutors have a chance to get a conviction and what type of defense we might be able to mount in your favor. Realize, though, what we're going to be evaluating is: 

  • (1) can the prosecutors prove the attempted murder charge?  and
  • (2) if they can't prove the attempted murder charge, can they prove some severe other crime against the person who is being charged?

If they can, that's probably a case we're going to want to negotiate.  If it's an all or nothing situation — either they can prove the attempted murder or they can't, and the person says they're innocent and they don't want to take any plea bargain or a deal with the prosecutors.

Jury Trials for Attempted Murder

Then obviously, that case will have to go to a jury trial, and I'm telling you, one of the most significant issues with the case is going to be whether or not the person was trying to kill the other party or whether or not that person was the perpetrator of the crime.

Sometimes it's a who-done-it situation, and the defendant is arguing that they are not the ones that attempted to kill somebody; no, they're claiming that they were defending themselves during the encounter with the other party.

You have to get that straight first — whether you're going to fight the case at a jury trial or whether it's a situation where we're going to work out a resolution. Then we can put together a mitigation package and do damage control to get a lesser charge that doesn't carry a life sentence behind it.

So, if you've got a California attempted murder case being prosecuted,  you've come to the right place.  I can help you.  Pick up the phone.  Make the call.  You'll be surprised how easy it is to get to talk to me, and this is something I can help you with.