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Living with 290

Living with 290: Success Story – Certificate of Rehabilitation and Removal from the CA Registry

I want to share a success story of overcoming the confines of being a registrant, and the practical steps I took. Of course, every case is different.

On February 22, 2018, I was granted a Certificate of Rehabilitation and relieved of the duty of having to register. After 11 years, the oppression was lifted just like that. After I gathered my jaw from the floor, I went down to the court cafeteria and just sat there. Pondering what just happened and the new possibilities.

I was convicted of an “Attempted Lewd Act” [PC 664-288(a)] in January 2007 after a high profile, albeit hugely controversial, sting operation that netted many including myself.


In 2013, I attended a job workshop where one of the guests spoke of an organization that prepares expungement petitions for free. Every Wednesday after 4 pm., Neighborhood Legal Services open their doors and their on-site attorneys help the community fill out petitions for expungement at no cost. All I had to do was file it at the court where I was convicted. It’s worth checking out, and I notice they still have an active website.

Neighborhood Legal Services has locations throughout Los Angeles County. I went to the location in El Monte. The address is:

Neighborhood Legal Services of L.A. County
Workers’ Rights Clinic, Wednesdays 5 pm to 8pm
9354 Telstar Avenue
El Monte, CA 91731
(800) 433-6251

One must bring a witness to the courthouse when filing the petition so they can sign a document.

About 4 months later, I received a copy of the judge’s decision and minute order in the mail. In a nutshell, he ordered that my case be dismissed. However, the petition to have the case reduced to a misdemeanor was denied. Nonetheless, I was blown away and could not believe it at first. I had to read it a few times and rub my eyes to make sure. My case was dismissed. I was ecstatic.

Some recommended that I wait a few years (I waited five years) after conviction before filing for an expungement. That shows the judge that time has passed without any new criminal charges.

There was one sticking point, however. Per California law, I was still required to register as a sex offender. I learned that one must have 10 years of clean record in order to file for a Certificate of Rehabilitation.


Over the years as a registrant, people like my probation officer and public sources made me aware that the Los Angeles County Public Defenders Office has a unit that handles Certificate of Rehabilitation requests at the court. Because I was convicted of an “attempt,” I knew I qualified. I just didn’t know to what extent. Would I qualify for just a COR? Would I qualify for removal from the registry? I thought it would just be the COR.

The contact person Rose Castellanos at the Public Defender’s Office (213) 974-2912, took my information. She informed me that I must fill out a form with my personal information and the reason why I want a COR. I must also provide letters attesting to my character from 4 friends or associates who have known me for 5 years or more.

I filled out the provided form. However, regarding the questions on why I want a COR and why am I deserving of it, I decided to type out my response as it would be longer than the few lines provided. In fact, I wrote about 6 pages or so of a concisely crafted response, including the determination from a required psychological evaluation that I did not suffer from “pedophilic disorder.” I also shared about my true transformation after an encounter with the love of God while I was in jail. I really put my heart and soul into it while keeping it briskly paced and professionally written.

On the day of the hearing, I brought copies of the cited psychological evaluation and related paperwork as I took my seat in the courtroom. The public defender asked me for a copy of the psych evaluation, so I was glad I was organized and she was impressed. After huddling with the lawyers from the DOJ and the judge, his honor read out his ruling. My public defender interpreted to me that the judge ordered that I am no longer required to register. At that point, it gets a little foggy as I recall she asks a simple enough question: “Are you happy?” I remember mustering a nod as I was in an utter state of confused shock. It was fine having the COR, but having my registration terminated was just a mind-blowing, out-of-the-park victory.

The ruling was under penal code 290.5, in which a new California ruling was implemented only a few years before (2013, I believe) that allowed for more types of sex offenders to be allowed a COR and termination of having to register. Just imagine. Only five years prior, I probably would have been granted a COR but likely denied the termination of having to register. Let that sink in. I give God ALL the glory. He makes a way where there is no way.


The public defender also warned me that the CA Department of Justice takes a few months to remove me from the registry.

A couple of months after the hearing in February, I noticed I was still in the registry. Therefore, I did some research and was provided the phone number of the area at the Department of Justice that maintains the registry, (916) 210-3113. The officer at the DOJ said they did not have any paperwork of a ruling so he asked me to fax them a copy of the court order. After another follow-up, they finally removed me from the registry in April 2018. That was followed by an official letter from the CA DOJ indicating that my requirement to register has been terminated. They definitely needed to be pushed and prodded for me to be removed.

In the weeks and months after my removal from the registry, I did some spring cleaning of my search engine results page and images. I was able to remove images of my mugshot and references of me as a registrant by simply asking the search engine or the website to take it down per court order. And they did.

My next step is to be sure any mention of me as a registrant is removed from many of the subscriber databases out there used by landlords, prospective employers, etc. I don’t want my history as a registrant to show up on those databases. Therefore, I plan to hire a company called that is run by a law firm. For a fee, they scour 650 private background check companies and have them remove the information I want gone per court order. You can’t trust these databases because they are often filled with errors or outdated information.

At one point, Rose Castellanos from the Los Angeles County Public Defenders’ Office indicated that I did not qualify for a COR. However, I recall I was told differently so I told her. Rose checked with a co-worker attorney and called me back to say I was correct. Please note that Rose is not an attorney but a paralegal. She makes mistakes.

I hope this encourages those out there that are unsure whether you qualify. An “attempt” qualifies you for petitioning for a COR. The rest if up to the judge.

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Thank you for the encouraging post. I have the exact same conviction that was also expunged in 2010. I was convicted in 04. Everything I’ve read and been told says that any subsection of 288 and any attempts thereof are not eligible. My conviction was in LA County but I live in San Bernardino County. I’m going to make an appointment at the public defenders office in Rancho Cucamonga Monday. I know that they will say I’m not eligible. What can I tell them that will get them to dig deeper and accomplish what you were able to? Reading your story literally brought me to tears of happiness for you but also for the hope it gave me and I’m sure thousands of other men who were caught in a sting. Please let me know. Take care and thanks in advance.

I am working with Miriam at the LA Public Defenders office in their Cert of Rehab division, I have a 664-288(a) and she says yes I can get a Cert, takes a few months to get the paperwork and to get in front of a judge. My offense was in Stanislaus Country but I live and was living in LA county . Mine was also a sting by sheriff department . Contact the the Public Defenders office and ask for the Cert of Rehab division. Best of Luck

I am so glad that my testimony encouraged you. I pray that the Lord will make a way for you to be removed from the registry. Do what you can, but also surrender the results to Him.

The reason for the confusion in your qualification is because of the recent addition to the laws that allow certain registrants and those that were charged with an “attempt’ to be included. I think the law changed in 2013 but I am not a lawyer. But stand your ground if they tell you otherwise.

Also, I know you are getting it done in San Bernardino County. However, if you can have it done by the public defender in Los Angeles County, that would be advised. Since your conviction was in Los Angeles County, ask Rose Castellanos or your public defender in SB County. The reason is lawyers have stated that Los Angeles County has granted a record number of COR’s and removal from the registry compared to other counties. I don’t know what the stats are in San Bernardino County. Not sure if they are more “conservative.” Orange County, in particular, has only granted a mere handful of COR’s in recent years. The judge in Los Angeles County–Judge Gordon–was very fair.

Im glad you are getting it done during this window of time as the laws may change when the tiered system comes in. I hear they may make it harder to get a COR then.

Let me know if you have any other questions.
God Bless,

Thank you so much for your kind words. This is a huge turning point in my fight for my life. I’ll be diligent and pursue all your suggestions. Thanks for the guidance. I’ll post here once I get some word back.

thumbs up.

I just received a COR in San Bernardino County on Feb 20th, Joshua Tree was the court location. My conviction was in L.A. County but I had been living in S.B. County for some years. I had Chance O for my attorney. The best of luck to you. If you start running into walls or become overwhelmed I suggest you talk to Chance. He knows his stuff really well.

A hearty congratulations! Your immediate reaction reminded me of exactly how I felt when I was granted my certificate in January. It was truly surreal, and I felt like I was in a dream that I hoped I would never wake from. Well it’s indeed a reality, and you’ve proven once again that, not only can someone with your offense be relieved of his duty to register, but that the Certificate of Rehabilitation Unit at the public defenders office is very competent in handling these matters. Perhaps in other jurisdictions you may be better off retaining private counsel, but if you’re going to file in L.A. County then I would absolutely put my faith in Rose, Maryam and attorney Jane Marpet. Judge Sam Ohta may have an intimidating presence, but he’s a reasonable man. I don’t just say that because he granted me my certificate. I witnessed how he handled several other cases before he called my name. He even smiled on occasion while court was in session, so I knew he wasn’t devoid of his own humanity.

For those filing for their CoR’s, once it’s granted you don’t necessarily have to wait a few months. My removal only took a matter of weeks, and that’s likely due to the fact that I called DOJ myself to inquire about being removed from the website. The receptionist at Rhonda’s office said that I could email them a scanned copy of my CoR, which I did. After a week following the email, as I recall, I was removed. Remember, even public defenders don’t have all the accurate and up-to-date information, and they really don’t concern themselves with how DOJ goes about their business. And it’s also not automatic that DOJ will alert all the other departments, such as Angel Watch Center or DMV (your criminal record shows up on your driving record too, and you may have to call their Sacramento office if it’s not automatically removed). So it’s highly recommended that you do your own work. It’s a little tedious, sure. But you’re cleaning up what’s essentially the aftermath of a nasty legal mess. Oh yeah, and make sure to also contact the agency where you registered to confirm that they received the notice from DOJ!

Speaking of Angel Watch Center, my friend who got his CoR and relief last year sent them a simple form called a Certificate of Identity (at the bottom of there’s an optional section authorizing ICE to release any and all information related to you. I, of course, would leave that blank) which you fill out and attach along with any document confirming that you are no longer registered. They replied to him within a day or so informing him that they won’t be on IML and receive the “passport marking provision.”

As for cleaning up the information on background check sites, make sure you do your due diligence on the company you hire. I know about and their firm Higbee & Associates, who in my experience have not been very attentive in returning my calls in a timely manner. So I would advice you to also check out as they have an “only pay for results” policy. Whichever service you decide to hire, make sure that they provide you a list of ALL the background check sites they claimed to have removed you from.

Now, I’m not so sure they also help remove you from mugshot sites like or, or “people finder” sites such as Spokeo or Instant Checkmate. Understand why this is critically important because, unlike background check sites, which in most cases employers or landlords will have to pay to access your criminal background, anyone can simply Google your name and find you thanks to sites like

As for, as I alluded to in my own CoR thread, they’ll remove you once you message them on their site requesting it. You will likely be contacted by someone via email named “Tom,” who, mind you, does not seem like the sharpest knife in the drawer. He requested the “expungement doc,” so I sent him the scanned copy of my Order for Dismissal. Apparently he doesn’t understand that this is the official expungement document, because he said it wasn’t what he was requesting and wouldn’t specify exactly what he needed. He just kept asking for the “expungement doc.” So I then sent him a copy of my expungement filing as well as the minute order for my case and told him that those were all I had. He finally removed my photo and info from the site.

So, to recap, you must be extremely diligent in keeping tabs on what people can access online. In the spirit of service, which I had mentioned before that I am committed to for this community, I will be posting a list of the sites I removed myself from and how I went about doing it for each instance. Whether it gets its own post or gets placed in this or some other thread will depend on the moderator.

Thanks for another encouraging comment. This community has made a huge difference in my life for many years. I admire your commitment to others in our position and am looking forward to sharing my experience during thie COR process. Thanks again to all of you who responded and congratulations on your success navigating this maze of a legal system.

Congrats and thank you for sharing!

You were very organized that you also included clearing your background after receiving the court orders. I never would have thought of that b/c I’m too mired in misery. I wished I could qualify for the CoR, but the new law takes place just before I can officially apply. Still, I love hearing good results from this community. God Bless you!

Art – that is so awesome! Even though I am in Florida and the laws differ, I am still encouraged that ANYTHING is possible! I would like to speak with you directly about your process and the faith to see it through.



That is great and I am very happy that times are changing. I am wondering if this will work for Federal cases?

So on August 6th I went in for my annual registration. Was told it was terminated.

I am an interstate compact from Washington state my crime voyeurism first degree. (Not a registrable offense in CA) so I call my po and he says they are investigating it and will let me know. Now two days later he calls says its reactivated and that I need to go in on next available time and register. I ask what happened he says to me that the doj is missed a file and they are getting files from Washington and they are under review. We are just being safe he says. What options do I have and how can I find the info i need any help is appreciated thank you

Call Washington state registry office (whatever/wherever that is). Hear it from the horses mouth. Also, Ca PO can contact them via the interstate compact and get an answer in minutes if they so choose. Whatever you do, do not violate…. get it in writing, cover YOUR ass.

I’ll also be filing a CoR in Fresno County in the near weeks ahead. A tremendous help to all of us who are eligible would be sample letters, redacted of course, submitted through this website. Those would be incredibly valuable to the ones filing. I would say letters of personal reference as well as the letter submitted that explains why you should be granted the CoR.
Thanks to all.

Sorry this is coming in late. If you’ve already submitted your character letters by the time you’re reading this then I hope that they’re more than adequately written. However, if you or anyone else here would like to see a sample letter then you may use the one I’ve pasted below as an example. The following redacted letter was what I consider the best among the ones I submitted with my CoR packet, although I would still advise wording at least part your letters your own way rather than simply copying and pasting the entire unredacted portion. Hope this helps.


Dear Honorable Judge —

My name is **** *********. I am writing this letter to the court for the benefit of my close friend of over 12 years, ******** ********.

******** has been a close friend of mine for the majority of the years that I have known him. During that span of time ******** has been invited to many Thanksgiving, Fourth of July, Easter, and Christmas Eve dinners with my family at my parent’s house. He has been a trusted and loyal friend who has always been there whenever I needed an extra hand like moving to a new apartment or something more involved like starting a new business.

Your Honor, I have always been an entrepreneur and have started many novel enterprises. ******** has always been there to lend a hand each and every time, thru successes and failures. He has helped me on special events for charity and for profit, we have worked together for ******** companies, *********** companies, ************* firms, and ********** companies, including my own, we have even worked together doing ************* and other random work. Through this all he has shown particular passion for ****************** like *********, and for charitable causes.

******** has always been someone who is concerned about the success and welfare of others, he has befriended many people who were suffering from addiction, homelessness, or domestic distress and has become their best friend. Helping them and being a “true friend” when no-one else would. I think this drive to help others has always been part of ********’s character, but I think that his experience dealing with his own rehabilitation has made him that much more sympathetic to others and their story.

******** is also a very accomplished *************** and part of what characterizes him is that he deeply cares about others and tried to understand them. He knows that one bad mark on a person’s life does not tell the whole story. Your honor, ********’s story should not be characterized by a few bad decisions. The ******** ******** I know is a good sincere person, and a good friend to myself and others. There are very few people I trust, and ******** is someone I would consider close in my circle of confidence. I trust him with my family, friends, and all of my business dealings without reservation.

Please consider ********’s history to be in the past. Surely he has more than paid his debt to society. In the light of his upstanding character, forgiving him without prejudice would give ******** the peace of mind in order to pursue the rest of his life without a dark shadow following him around. I know that he will use this blessed opportunity to its fullest and will continue to be a valuable member of society, a good friend to myself, and perhaps more importantly, he has shown himself to be a lifeline to many in need.

Thank you, Your Honor, for your consideration,

**** *********

Yes I have sent the letters ; Priest, Lawyer, Doctor and Deacon…all have known me for over 30 years each. They basically said what you recommeneded . Also mentioned my crime as recommended by the Public Defenders office. My court date is in Oct in LA Superior Court. Just interested in seeing if I can cruise to Mexico and what happens in the days / months after the court date

Well, as of now I don’t think you would even want to try taking a cruise there. I know you’d love nothing more than to hop on that boat, but if you’re still on the registry then, depending on which cruise liner you plan on taking, you won’t even be allowed to purchase a ticket as they have been banning registrants altogether. There were previous posts about this very topic. And even if they did let you on the cruise, you still won’t be allowed entry into Mexico. They might make an exception if you were born there. Otherwise it would be a waste of time and money even trying right now.

I’m sure you understand all of this already, but it sounds like you’re chomping at the bit. Hey, we all want to get our lives back. I still have yet to get my passport, only because I’ve got big business plans that I’ve been putting into motion. I find myself once again chasing that dream that I thought I had lost forever when I first got caught up in this mess. And interestingly enough, only several months have passed since I was removed from the registry and it feels closer than ever to becoming a reality. Opportunities are showing up like never before. And once that first deal closes then I will actually need to get my passport as I’ll be traveling abroad for my business anyway. But I’ve overcome haste regardless, and it’s been worth it to just let things unfold as they should.

So get your CoR first, which hopefully will result in termination of your duty to register (the judge should mention it if he grants it to you). Once you clear that hurdle then you will need to wait until CA DOJ removes you from the system. You can speed this up by contacting them once you receive your CoR, which you can scan and email to their department. As soon as you’ve confirmed that you’re 100% off of the registry then you can apply for your passport.

So it looks like your hearing will be held in the same DTLA courtroom where I had mine. I assume Judge Ohta will still be presiding. Aside from granting me my CoR, I watched him handle other cases before he called my name. I’d say he’s a reasonable man, so I hope he’ll likewise rule in your favor. Please let us know how it went.

Free Again; I understand there is only one courtroom and one judge who handles these cases. I have worked with the LA Public Defenders and they only do Cert of Rehab from this department. My crime was a 664-288(a) so it all seems to line up for a COR and relief from registration. My crime was back in 2001 so it has been a long time; so glad to read on this site about others who have had their COR. Wonder if anyone of us will ever seen a pardon from the governor ?
Thanks for you replies and I will post the good news when I get it

I remember you now from the thread under my previous post about my own CoR story. I’m still not happy that the public defender’s office initially misinformed you about your situation, which I found grossly negligent on their part. But I’m glad you persisted and got the clarification which prompted you to file for the certificate. After reading the original post here, I would say that, unless you somehow royally screwed up along the way, I’m feeling very, very optimistic about the outcome.

Dear Free Again; I have my court date for my COR on this Thursday in LA Court ; just want to know if the Judge asked you any questions when you went before him? I have not met face to face with anyone in the REHAB Office but assured by Miriam Singer this is the way it is done. Just a bit nervous and hoping you can belay my concerns


The judge asked me nothing as far as I remember. Whatever he said was pretty brief. It all happened in what felt like 30 seconds, no joke. As usual, he’ll ask the D.A. if he had any objection, and in my case the D.A. said no, which will hopefully be his response for you as well. Then the judge will announce that your rights are restored and that you’re relieved of your duty to register. You can ask the public defender’s office which judge you’ll be facing. If it’s the same one as mine (Sam Ohta) then it’ll be pretty quick. The public defender then asked me if I understood what had just happened. I simply replied, “Yes I do,” and then thanked her and left. Everything was a blur of disbelief from that point as I was leaving the building.

I don’t know of anyone who wouldn’t feel nervous going into a hearing of this nature. There’s no way around that, given the magnitude of what’s at stake. I managed to get probably 2 hours of sleep the night before. But again, I feel pretty good about your chances. Just make sure to look your absolute best, as if you’re going in for the job interview of a lifetime. Wear a suit if you have one, and be immaculately groomed.

I’ll be checking back here in a couple of days, hopefully to read the good news.

I have a court date next month for my Cert of Rehab. I have worked with LA Public Defenders office. One question for those who already received a COR: has anyone applied for and gotten a clean Passport and have traveled to Mexico or Canada? Was the COR enough to get you access to Mexico and or Canada

I would check out the International Travel section on this site.

My friend received his passport recently after getting his CoR and having his registration terminated. There is no unique identifier in his passport. If you got a passport while you were registered and it contains an IML unique identifier, then you’ll need to fill out a Certificate of Identity and email it to Angel Watch Center. Once approved, you’ll need to get another passport. If you never applied or received a passport while you were registered and are now trying to apply for one following termination, then you should be clear. Remember to first make sure that your duty to register has been terminated. As you may know, being granted a Certificate of Rehabilitation doesn’t automatically mean you’re off the registry.

To my knowledge, once you’re off the registry then only Canada will likely deny you entry. According to their official travel website, even a governor’s pardon doesn’t necessarily mean you’re automatically clear to enter their country. You’ll most likely have to apply for Deemed Rehabilitated status. You should contact the Canadian embassy to see if you’re required to go that route. It really depends on a number of factors, such as whether or not there’s a comparable law in Canada that matches the one you violated in the U.S. I would also consult a reputable immigration attorney with knowledge on international criminal laws. In any case, you will most likely have to apply for rehabilitation. The good news is that once you are deemed rehabilitated then it’s permanent, unless of course you get caught up in another legal mess again.

You should have no trouble with Mexico. But if you were imprisoned for over a year for any crime, or if you were convicted of a drug related offense, then Japan will likely deny you entry.

Bottom line is, carry with you a copy of the Certificate of Rehabilitation if you must, but do not use it as documentation for entry into a foreign country.

Thanks I am not really interested in Canada as much as Mexico for a cruise. After I got out of prison I took a cruise to Mexico but then only needed Drivers License (2004) and I have let my Passport lapse so I will need a new one

Free Again…I had my court date to day and the Public Defender said to delay since the regular judge was not on the bench today and the judge who took his place is anti SO. Also, now she is saying he DA wants to see a report from a psychologist that would show I am not likely to reoffend; so new date od Dec 5th


Well, this certainly wasn’t the news I and I’m sure many others here were expecting to read from you today, but then the worst case scenario didn’t play out either. How frustrating this must be though.

A psych report was never requested for my certificate hearing. When I was filling out my packet I asked Rose if I needed one, and I even volunteered to go and obtain one figuring that it could only help my case. But she said that based on her experience this is only necessary when the court requests it, which is obviously what’s happening here with your situation.

So I’m curious about two things. First of all, I wonder if the D.A. would have made this request had the regular judge been present this morning, thus prompting him to delay your hearing regardless. Of course, there’s always the possibility that the judge could have just ignored the D.A.’s request and granted you the certificate. But the new date’s been set, so that’s neither here nor there. And secondly, did the public defender recommend a psychologist to you? They should know someone to send you to since they must deal with this sort of request often.

Well, if not then it might be best to find an actual forensic psychologist who has a strong reputation for handling defendants in these types of cases. If you can’t come up with some names then I may be able to find one for you. Otherwise, perhaps Janice might be able to refer you to someone. I’m guessing that this may cost you a fee, but there are many who can work with you on a sliding scale as well. Again, just make sure that they’re reputable enough to satisfy the D.A. and the judge. I’m assuming that they’d want you to have had multiple sessions with whoever it is you decide to go with prior to your next hearing. So the sooner you take care of this the better.

Try not to stress out about this too much. I realize that you were hoping today would be that huge turning point you had been anticipating for a while now, so I truly feel your frustration. It just sounds like an additional routine hurdle (hassle) that you need to clear. A good psych report should be enough to put this to rest. I still feel that your outcome will be favorable.

Let me know if there’s anything else I can do to assist.

Do you have to wait the full 10 years or are there exceptions to the wait time for a cor? I have a misdemeanor police sting I was on backpage looking for an escort.

A psych evaluation is not *required* documentation, but in some counties you better believe you get nowhere without one. And it isn’t cheap. Good thing is, if the evaluation is not everything you hoped it would be, you are under no obligation to submit it, you can go on to the next shrink to see if it turns out better. Of course you are obligated to pay for it.

My husband’s lawyer gave him a list of psychologists / psychiatrists who had done work for the court, and who were highly thought of by court personnel. I was under the impression that the court having a high comfort level with these professionals is key.

My husband called a couple to find out about fees, time frame, etc. When he explained what he needed and what he wanted it for, one of the psychologists was silent for a moment and then replied “well don’t you wish you had merely killed someone”. True story!

Since there is really no objective threshold, getting the right judge is also key. Your PD made the right call.


You should know by now what I’m about to say: consult with an attorney.

I can tell you this much. Your offense is a very light misdemeanor, so you might very well be able to file for your certificate sooner than 10 years. By the way, did you already get it expunged? If not, then you should take care of that ASAP! Unbelievable that they made you register for such an offense. I sure hope they didn’t also put you up on the public registry for that!

Question…I received my COR last week in LA County Superior Court BUT they are still saying I need to register … the Public Defender Office does not have an answer as to why it has change since you and others got their COR for similar offense as mine 664-288(a) … do you know why and when this change went into effect. My offense was in 2001 and I was released from prison in 2003 ? Any place where I can appeal to get off Megan Site…has anyone had a Pardon from Newsom for a similar offense


Conviction under 288(a) is NOT eligible for a CoR. That yours was an attempt (664) is probably what helped you get that. Otherwise, I’m surprised it was granted but not surprised that you still have to register because it is a 288(a) attempted or otherwise. From what I’ve heard over and over again from Janice and Co. is that not one person who has a sex offense conviction has ever been granted a governor’s pardon. Ever.

As NPS stated any conviction for any section of 288 is not eligible to be relieved of registering except by gubernatorial pardon.

I am not a lawyer but that is what is spelled in 290.5

Having the attempted (664) on your charge let you get the 1203.4 and therefor the COR. California Supreme Court ruled that an attempted crime was not the same as the crime itself. Then based on the language of the laws attempted crimes have had a window to get the dismissal and COR.

If I remember the new tiered law correctly this access is removed under the new law.

Hopefully having the dismissal and the COR will make your application for removal under the tiered law much simpler.

Free Again; I want to understand and find out how you were able to get off registration ; the Judge left that obligation to register in my COR and same in the formal paperwork. Now I have to wait until 2021 and when the Tiered goes into affect I can appeal to the judge ,
Le me know if you have found any other way around registration and the ability to get a “clean” Passport


First of all, I apologize taking so long to respond. I did read over your various posts since your CoR hearing, and I was mostly disheartened that, while you were granted your CoR, you were denied removal from the registry. I was certain that it would happen for you, but after reviewing doing some more research on PC 664-288(a) as well as comments from others here I realized that I was indeed mistaken. Aside from removal, I know that your main concern is the marker on your passport. Well, as of now there’s no way for you to work around it, unfortunately. I would say, though, that the CoR would likely help when you petition for removal as per the upcoming changes. However, to be honest I’m not entirely certain which tier you’d fall under. As I understand it, you’ll be notified of this sometime in the middle of next year. I get that this is frustrating, but above all, I still believe that your days on the registry are numbered.

Hello all,
I encouraged my husband to ask here, but looks like he hasn’t. He registers in San Mateo County and I wss wondering if anyone has been successful in receiving a COR in this county and if so, was termination of registration granted? I know it is a very conservative county so I’m hoping for the best. His charge was 667 288(a) and 288.2(b) internet sting. Thanks in advance for any information!

Peter, did it involve an adult claiming to be a minor? or some kind of battery?

NPS, Interested and MOT ~ Now, I am really confused. I thought a 1203.4 does not relieve you from the duty to register, and that is why you would need a COR. I was under the impression a COR is the only way for eligible offenses to get that relief. Since not all offenses are eligible for a COR, only a governor’s pardon would be the way off the registry for those offenses, BUT those offenses that do qualify for a COR should give you relief from registering. What am I missing, or like MOT said, when did this law change? I really don’t think, MOT should have to register anymore once the COR was granted. Are we sure they know what they are talking about in court? It isn’t the first time that they need to be educated about the law. If the COR does not relief, one would think that offense wasn’t eligible for a COR in the first place and would need a governor’s pardon. Can someone please enlighten me?

@ someone who cares

You have made a great logical argument for how most people would or at least should think the laws work. As most have learned living through having to register, laws rarely are logical and definitely confuse people.

I agree that Mot, and all others who receive a COR, should no longer have to register.

Sadly PC 290.5 spells out who is granted relief from registering upon receipt of a COR. Anyone convicted of 288 is among the codes who are not granted relief. Additionally, on the application for a COR it also states that it does not relieve all registrants from the obligation of having to continue to register.

It is frustrating and illogical! As I said earlier, hopefully having the COR will make the process of applying to be removed from registering under the new tiered register a formality … that remains to be defined however.

Getting the COR is huge step, however for many of us it does little to change our circumstances immediately. Laws can and do change, sometimes even in our favor. Having the paperwork where the court has declared that you are fully rehabilitated can only help in the future.

The 1203.4 dismissed the conviction but makes no declaration about your level of rehabilitation. That was why it was worth pursuing for me and my family.

@ someone

I agree with your thought process it’s logical and makes sense.

Sadly the law specifically addresses what we are discussing with the COR. On the application requesting the COR it states it will not relieve all 290 registrants from having to register. Additionally, PC 290.5 specifically lists all 288 offenses as not be eligible from relief of registering when a COR is granted.

It does not make sense and is extremely frustrating!

The COR is the court declaring and certifying someone as being fully rehabilitated, and that is significant and important. The 1203.4 does not make that declaration.

The law can and does change, even in our favor at times. Hopefully one of these law changes will work in such a way that we can use the COR to our advantage.

Time will tell.

@someone who cares,

You make a great logical argument. Originally, 1203.4 allowed a pathway off the registry if you qualified for it because there was no way off the registry. But by the passing of the law on 2007, in order to get off the registry, the state negated 1203.4 and increased the threshold to the CoR. The 2007 law (PC 290.5) identified that there is a now a pathway off the registry, which is designated as the CoR.

Now, not every crime is eligible for 1203.4. For a registrant, in order to get a CoR, you must first qualify for 1203.4. But after that, the eligibility off the registry decreases. That doesn’t make any sense as now a registrant who qualifies for 1203.4 and CoR isn’t permitted to de-register. That’s contrary to the purpose set within PC 290.5 that there is a pathway off the registry. There isn’t one in Mot’s case.

PC 290.5 violates its own law as it extended the pathway off the registry from 1203.4 term period to a 10-year period for the CoR. I think people in this category should have a legitimate gripe because they’re getting hit with double jeopardy as you’re already qualified as a low level offender by being granted by the courts 1203.4, but after a decade of waiting and earning the CoR, then you still don’t qualify? That makes absolutely no sense.

There should be no exceptions to de-register when applying for the CoR as the exceptions already began to who qualified for the 1203.4.

New Person:
I am more confused now; is 1203.4 better than a COR? Since I have a COR for my 664/288(a) will I need a 1203.4 also? I know that in 2021 things may change but which is better in the minds of the Courts when I asked o get off REGISTRATION in 2021? Does any of this affect a Passport as I would like to travel overseas; except Canada; in the future. At the very least to Mexico and the Carribean


In order to get your COR you had to first get the 1203.4 (also called an expungement).

Without getting the 1203.4 you can’t not qualify for the COR.
Some on here have reported getting both simultaneously.

I am not a lawyer, so this is not legal advice.

As long as you are required to register you will likely get a marked passport. As such, you are very likely to be denied entry into Mexico and similar countries.

To my knowledge, California has not released what the process will be to petition to be removed from having to register. That said your COR is the court declaring you are fully rehabilitated and no longer a threat to society. That will make it very difficult for the court to declare at your petition that you are now once more a risk to society.

As we have all learned in our lives as registered citizens, what makes sense is often ignored.

Sadly we will have to wait for the state to reveal the process and then make our case.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x