How can we help you?

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Contact Us

Robin J. Yanes

13101 Washington Blvd,
Suite 214
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Phone: 310-421-2696
Fax: 310-306-6652

Map and Directions

Click Here to Email our Firm

Criminal Defense FAQ

How Will My Sentence be Decided?

As you might imagine, the sentence you receive depends heavily on your individual case. The type of crime you’ve committed, the sentencing guidelines or statutory recommendations for the crime, and your criminal history are probably the three most prominent factors a judge will consider when determining your sentence. Sentencing is generally broken up into four different categories: fines, community service, probation and jail or prison time.

After you are found guilty, a judge will first look at the sentencing guidelines or the crime statute itself to determine the recommended sentence. The basic difference between a misdemeanor and a felony lies in the sentencing: A misdemeanor usually carries six months or less of jail time, while a felony will generally carry more than six months of prison time as a recommended sentence. While judges cannot adhere to sentencing guidelines or statutory recommendations without considering other factors, they are often required to provide good reason for a deviation either upward (more severe) or downward (less severe) from the sentencing guidelines.

Nearly every state now has mandatory minimums for certain types of crimes, mostly those involving drugs and/or firearms. In these cases, no matter what the extenuating circumstances may be, a judge has no choice but to sentence a defendant as the law requires. Similarly, there are often mandatory minimum sentences for people who have been convicted of their third felony-level crime. This type of law is generally known as the “three strikes” rule, and rests on the assumption that people who repeatedly commit serious crimes should receive stiffer penalties.

There are mitigating factors that a judge will consider when determining your sentence. Working in your favor may be the fact that you have no history of prior convictions, that you were merely an accessory to a crime, or that no one was (or was likely to have been) injured. Alternatively, judges generally will come down harder on someone who has a list of prior convictions, has used a dangerous weapon during the commission of the crime, or has intended to hurt someone.

Having a good attorney is crucial in any criminal proceeding. He or she will be able to work with the prosecutor and present evidence to a judge in an effort to get you the least severe sentence possible, given your circumstances.

Copyright © 2008 FindLaw, a Thomson Reuters business

DISCLAIMER: This site and any information contained herein are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent counsel for advice on any legal matter.

View Archives

At the law office of Robin J. Yanes, in Los Angeles, I represent criminal defendants in East LA, South Central LA, South Bay, the LA Basin, Beverly Hills and Hollywood, including Long Beach, Anaheim, Glendale, Pomona, Santa Clarita, Torrance, Pasadena, El Monte, Downey, West Covina, Norwalk, Burbank, Santa Monica, Alhambra, Whittier, Lakewood, Marina del Rey, Baldwin Park and Inglewood; and throughout Los Angeles County and Orange County, California