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(951) 667-5293

Orange County:

(714) 758-5293

who you hire can make all the difference

Mr. Donath has spent his entire career defending people and standing up for the rights of the accused.

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  • former deputy public defender

    As a former Deputy Public Defender in Riverside County, Mr. Donath has always been on the defense side of the law. 

  • award winning certified criminal law specialist

    Top 100 Trial Attorneys in California 2012-2014, 2008 Trial Attorney of the Year by the Riverside County Public Defender's Office, and dozens of other awards and accolades.

  • a true passion for defending the accused

    Your lawyer should have a passion for defense, not just a passion for money. Reputation, vigor, and determination go a long way in this business.

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General FAQ’S

Examples of Guilt by Association

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S on December 18, 2019

You have probably heard the term “guilty by association” since you were young. Also known as the “association fallacy,” this is the assumption that a person is guilty of something, not because of any evidence to prove they are guilty, but rather because they are associated with someone who is guilty. Today, we want to…

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How Many Points Can You Get on Your License in California?

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S on June 27, 2019

Violating a traffic law in California can result in points on your license. The point system serves to punish drivers for moving violations. If you accrue too many points on your driver’s license, you could lose your driving privileges. Understanding how the point system works can help you avoid losing your license due to too…

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Arraignment Hearing Process in California

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S,Sentencing on June 22, 2019

An arraignment hearing is the first court appearance a defendant will make after facing charges for a crime. During an arraignment, the defendant will hear the formal charges the court is pressing against him or her. The defendant will also have the opportunity to enter a plea: guilty, not guilty, or no contest. Arraignments are…

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Misdemeanor Jail Time in California

Posted in General FAQ'S,Sentencing on May 25, 2019

The three main categories of crime in California are infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies. Infractions are the least serious, felonies are the most serious, and misdemeanors are in the middle. The punishments for a misdemeanor depend on the circumstances of the crime, but often include jail time and/or fines. Knowing whether you will serve time in…

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When Should a Defendant Testify at Trial?

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S on May 21, 2019

As the defendant of a criminal case, the thought of testifying at trial can be daunting. Providing testimony as a defendant is not mandatory, but it may be part of your lawyer’s defense strategy depending on the circumstances of your case. Knowing when a defendant should testify at his or her criminal trial is part…

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Should I Agree to Take a Lie Detector Test?

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S on January 11, 2019

Polygraph tests or lie detector tests have a muddled public image due to distortions from media representations, so it is vital to know what these tests mean in the real world. When the police arrest an individual, they have a legal obligation to instruct the arrestee of his or her rights, one of which is…

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How to Prepare for Your Free Legal Consultation

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S on December 17, 2018

If you are facing criminal charges, you should retain a criminal defense attorney to represent you in the courtroom. The first step in hiring a lawyer is to attend a free legal consultation at his or her office to discuss the facts of your case, learn about the lawyer’s practice, and decide whether you will…

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Student Searches in Schools: What Are My Child’s Rights?

Posted in Criminal Defense,General FAQ'S,Juvenile Crimes on November 16, 2018

What Are Student Searches? Teachers, administrators, school counselors, and other personnel use student searches to keep a campus safe. From drug suspicions to school shooting concerns, school officials have asked students to empty their backpacks, open their lockers, and even reveal the contents of their pockets during these searches. Most of the time, these searches…

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County to Start Pilot Program for People in Jail with Mental Illness

Posted in General FAQ'S on February 5, 2018

The topic of people with mental illnesses going to jail has been one of great controversy for years. Mental illness and disorders such as depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder are risk factors for committing crimes. They are also rampant conditions in jails nationwide. One study in San Diego, for example, found the…

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New Law, Penal Code 851.87: Easier to Seal Arrest Record in CA

Posted in General FAQ'S on January 5, 2018

If police have arrested you in California but the courts never convicted you, a new state law makes it possible to automatically seal your arrest record. “Sealing” your record means the arrest will not appear on most criminal background checks in the state, although it will still be visible to law enforcement agencies. Learn how…

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