Aggravated Arson

PC 451.5 Aggravated Arson 

(a) Any person who willfuly, maliciously, deliberately, with premeditatin, and with intent to cause injury to one or more persons or to cause damage to property under circumstances likely to produce injury to one or more person or to cause damage to one or more structures or inhabited dwellings, sets fire to, burns, or causes to be burned, or aids, counsels, or procures the burning of any residence, structure, forest land, or property is guilty of aggravated arson if one or more of the following aggravating factors exists:

(1) The defendant has been previusly convicted of arson on one or more occasions within the past 10 years.

(2) (A) The fire caused property damage and other losses in excess of six million ive hundred thousand dollars ($6,500,000).

(B) In calculating the total amount of property damage and other losses under subpararaph (A), the court shall consider the cost of fire suppression.  It is the intent of the legislature that this paragraph be reviewed within five years to consider the effects of inflation on the dollar amount stated herein.  For that reason, this paragraph shall remain in effect until January 1, 2014, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute which is enacted before January 1, 2014, deletes or extends that date.

(3) The fire caused damage to, or the destruction of, five or more inhabited structures.

(b) Any person who is convicted under subdivision (a) shall be punished by impriosnment in the state priosn for 10 years to life.

(c) Any person who is sentenced under subdivision (b) shall not be eligivle for relase on parole until 10 calendar years have elapsed.

Recent Fresno Arson News and News Article Link:

Fresno had been plagued with a rash of arson fires.  The neighborhoods had been in fear of arson fires for many months.  However, recent arrests of dramatically decreased the number of arson fires in the fresno area.  Fresno areas arson fires decreased from an average in excess of 40 arson fires a month over the summer months to 12 in January.  

Several of the fires happened in Fresno area alleys, along freeways, and under overpasses.  Several houses had close calls, being placed in jeopardy of being burned by the fires.  The risk to human life, citizens and firefighters is always presents.  Fire has been a dangerous we have all lived with since the begining of time.

Michael Van Valkenburg was arrested after several people spotted him walking away from these fires.  Soon thereafter Ruben Ochoa was arrested, and thefires decreased.

The next month, fires in Southeast Fresno slowed down. Investigators arrested 28-year-old Ruben Ochoa for setting fire to a home. He's facing four counts of arson and prosecutors expect to charge him with several more next week. Investigators blame Ochoa for dozens of fires, and they almost stopped his spree months earlier.  Others were arrested as well.

Link To News Article on Fresno Serial Arsonists

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Fresno DUI Attorney | Madera DUI Attorney If you've been cited, you need to know what to do next. Help your attorney help you, contact me as soon as possible

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Fresno DUI Lawyer Jonathan Rooker: Fresno area law enforcement agencies have some of the strictest DUI enforcement policies in the Nation. The first decision an officer makes during the DUI enforcement is the decision to stop the vehicle. It may be a driving pattern, maintenance infraction, tinted windows, or other issues the lead the officer to make that decision. The next decision is whether to have the driver exit the vehicle and conduct a DUI investigation. Factors include odor or alcohol, red watery eyes, and slurred speech. Timely stopping, parking, and fumbling with a license or insurance paperwork, all influence the officers decision to continue the investigation. Once outside the vehicle the subject may sway or have trouble following directions. At the conclusion of the third stage, the officer decides if there is probable cause for an arrest. If you are arrested, there are steps you should take on your own behalf. It is important for anyone cited for DUI to contact the DMV within 10 days to preserve their right to an Admin Per Se Hearing in front of a DMV officer. Failure to contact the DMV within 10 days may result in the suspension of your driving privilege. Remember, the officer arrests at probable cause, but it takes proof beyond a reasonable doubt to convict. If the officer does their job right, a large percentage of the people should be found not guilty.

Fresno Criminal Defense Attorney: Sometimes good people need help during tough times

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Fresno & Madera Criminal Defense Lawyer Jonathan Rooker: Domestic Violence (DV) charges, punishments, and your rights is something you need to understand if you've been accused. DV charges can result in a sentence of probation, jail, and/or prison. DV can be charged under various sections including PC 243(E) or the more serious PC 273.5 Felony (DV) accusation. Many convictions result in being sentenced to a 52-week program, referred to as the Batterers Treatment Program (BTP). The right to own, possess, or use a Firearms, a serious issue for many people who grew up in the rural valley hunting, fishing, and target shooting can be lost forever. While Judges routinely advise those convicted of misdemeanor Domestic Violence that they will be prohibited from owning firearms for 10-years, the Federal Government will preclude gun ownership for the remainder of the persons life if they are convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence. It is important that the court knows you are a law abiding, upstanding, and productive member of society. Don't let an accusation turn into a lifetime of being stigmatized as a criminal.

"Criminal defense is about helping good people, that is what I do." Jonathan Rooker


Experienced Fresno and Madera County Criminal Defense Attorney Jonathan Rooker understands the needs of each client are quite unique to each individual client. Some clients are looking to keep their drivers license, others are looking to avoid long periods of incarceration. Many times pride and principles are cited for the client's motivation to achieve a particular resolution to their case. Many clients just want to put their life, family, and career back together. It is the responsibility of the defense attorney to coordinate and effective defense for the benefit of the client. It is essential that I provide the best defense for the individual person and their specifically tailored needs in life. I will help you by building the best defense that the facts allow. One important aspect of hiring a private attorney is the time they spend listening to your needs, and working to obtain an effective resolution under the circumstances. When these problems arise, it's time to reach out for a helping hand. I handle criminal defense cases on a daily basis, helping people with their issues. Let me help you.