In the first known case involving a contested petition, California Placer County Superior Court granted the petition of a registrant convicted of PC 288(a) who had registered for more than 25 years. The Placer County District Attorney asked the court to deny the petition in order to significantly enhance public safety.
In this case, the court ruled that the DA’s office “failed to meet their burden that the community safety would be significantly enhanced by the petitioner’s continued registration.” The court went on to explain that its decision to grant the petition “in no way minimizes the gravity of the underlying offense.”
In the decision, the court stated that it recognized the “significant and successful efforts toward rehabilitation” demonstrated by the registrant for more than 25 years. The court also stated that it was persuaded by the registrant’s “completion of therapy and counseling, his maintenance of sobriety and service in the AA community, his own letter to the court and acceptance of responsibility. Further, the court noted the importance of a recent report from a PhD psychologist stating that the registrant had a low risk of re-offense.
“We applaud the court’s wise decision in this case,” stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci, who represented the registrant. “It’s important to emphasize that the registrant in this case completed counseling, led a law-abiding life and practiced sobriety for more than 25 years.”
It has been reported that a second case involving a contested petition is to be heard in San Diego county later this month. The results of that case will be reported as soon as available.