When will I be able to get my property back after being charged with prostitution in California? 10 Answers as of May 27, 2011

I was arrested in California for prostitution. The police took my laptop, cell phone and $400. The police officer said they kept it for evidence, and when the case is over I can get my stuff back. When I went to court the first time I asked my pubic defender about getting my property back and she said the city attorney will not let me have it back. I said why? And the officers said I could when this case is over, she just said because he will not. So I want to know, does the city attorney have the right to do that? I plead not guilty and go back in a month. But can I get my stuff back after I take a deal? Or after trail?

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Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
At the conclusion of your case your attorney should make a motion ordering the return of any property that is not contraband and which you can prove is yours.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/27/2011
Law Office of Marc K. Herbert
Law Office of Marc K. Herbert | Marc K. Herbert
Unless your property has value as evidence, all of your property should be returned to you after the case is finished.

Talk to your Public Defender about getting your property back. In some counties, the PD can make an informal request for the return of this property; in some counties, the PD must file a motion to the Court.

Some PDs don't like filing the motions, but they must file it if you make a written request to the PD office.

If you would like to talk about this case, please call my office.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/11/2011
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
When the case is over, request a return of the property. As long as it has no evidentiary value and is not contraband or otherwise prohibited, you are entitled to have it.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/8/2011
The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann
The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann | Christopher J. McCann
You can get it back after the case is settled if the property is not illegal to possess and was not used in the commission of a crime. You can get it back before the case is over if you file a request for an order signed by the judge. The property must not be illegal to possess, must not have any further investigative purpose and must not have be en used in the commission of a crime.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/8/2011
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
When the case is concluded; the police will release the non contraband to the owner or owner's rep.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/7/2011
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    You should get any possessions back after the conclusion of the case by plea or trial BUT you need to have your PD make a release from the judge signed off by the DA as part of any plea deal. Then you can take it to the police dept and get your things. They have no right to keep them after the case resolves. You should at least get your $400 back now as they can stipulate and xerox the bills that this was the money you had on you. As for the laptop the PD won't do anything they don't absolutely have to do where a private lawyer, at least a good one, would get the stuff back. But tell the PD to ask the judge. The cops can do a mirror of the hard drive and keep that - same with the cell phone, but like I say the PDs are not going to do it - but lean on the PD to do it. Usually they really don't need either the lap top or the cell unless they think you keep business records on it. For a little pros case what do they need it for. Are they going to call every man in your cell phone to ask if you did a trick with them. I doubt too many are that stupid. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/18/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Once the case has resolved either through a plea, acquittal, or conviction, your attorney needs to file a motion to get the property back. They will not be returned to your automatically.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/7/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    Return of property is done by making a formal written request to the arresting agency, then if refused you must file a motion with the court. Talk to your PD.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/7/2011
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