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Filling out CR-180: Petition for Dismissal

A petition for dismissal consists of the following: # Petition for Dismissal (CR-180) # Evidence in Support of the Petition, if applicable # Order for Dismissal (CR-181) # Fee or Request (FW-001) & Order (FW-003) for Fee Waiver # Proof of Service

Step 1 Filling out CR-180: Petition for Dismissal  ¶ 

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Step 1 Filling out CR-180: Petition for Dismissal  ¶ 

  • California Judicial Council Form CR-180 is the approved form to file a petition for dismissal pursuant to California Penal Code § 1203.4. And § 1203.4a. And reduction of a felony-wobbler to a misdemeanor under § 17(b). In short, it's three petitions in one.

    • CR-180 is an "optional" form for the petitioner, meaning that you can file a dismissal petition on a different form. It is not optional for the court, however. They have to accept it if you file it. See California Rules of Court, Rule 1.35.

  • In order to fill out CR-180, you need the following information.

    • Case-identifying information

    • Conviction information

    • Sentencing information

  • You can get the necessary information from official criminal records, such as a DOJ rap sheet and a printout from the court.

Step 2  ¶ 

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Step 2  ¶ 

  • ELIGIBILITY: Before you fill out this form, make sure that (1) the petitioner is eligible and (2) the offense is eligible. Both the petitioner and the offense must be eligible for the court to process the petition.

  • Petitioner: The petitioner is eligible if he or she is (1) not currently incarcerated; (2) not currently on probation or parole for any case; (3) not charged in a case currently pending in court.

  • Offense: Determining the offense eligibility is more convoluted. In short, all offenses are eligible, with the following exceptions:

    • The offense led to the defendant serving time in a state prison, whether by original sentencing or upon probation revocation. (Note that merely being sentenced to prison doesn't count. Actual time must be served in prison.)

    • The offense resulted in a misdemeanor conviction under Vehicle Code §§ 2800, 2801, or 2803.

    • The offense is one of the following sex offenses: Penal Code §§ 286(c), 288, 288a(c), 288.5, 289(j), or a felony conviction of 261.5(d).

    • A limited number of vehicle-related violations is eligible only for discretionary dismissal "in the interests of justice." These require that you check the box 3(c) on CR-180 and submit supplemental evidence. They are "2-point" violations as defined in Vehicle Code § 12810(a)-(e), which include:

      • Penal Code §§ 192.5(b), 192(c). Vehicle Code §§ 2800.2, 2800.3, 14601.1, 14601.2, 14601.3, 14601.5, 20001, 20002, 21651(b), 22348(b), 23109(a), 23109(c), 23109.1, 23140(a), 23140(b), 23152, 23153, 31602.

Step 3  ¶ 

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Step 3  ¶ 

  • CR-180 was modified as of 1/1/2014, and some of the information in this guide no longer applies.

  • CAPTION: Case-identifying information goes in the box at the top of CR-180: Petition for Dismissal.

  • The top part is the proper contact information for who is filing this petition. If you're filing for yourself, write "Self-represented" or "Pro per" or "Pro se" in the ATTORNEY FOR (Name) section.

    • If the petitioner's name is different from the name as it appears on the official record, write the real name followed by "a.k.a." For example, if the petitioner was convicted as "John Doe," but his real name is "Robert Roe," you would write "Robert Roe, a.k.a. John Doe" in ATTORNEY OR PARTY WITHOUT ATTORNEY section.

  • The blue box is the official name of the case. Therefore, be sure to use the petitioner's name as it appears on the official record.

  • Case number goes here.

  • Additional information about the petitioner/defendant goes here. It mainly helps the court locate the case and its files.

    • CII stands for Criminal investigation and Identification, and it's a number unique to a fingerprint (or so I'm told) and is listed on the first page of a DOJ rap sheet. And it is not necessary to provide it here, as long as you can provide the date of birth and driver's license number.

Step 4  ¶ 

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Step 4  ¶ 

  • REDUCTION: The highlighted parts on CR-180 show that the form can also be used to ask the court to reduce an eligible felony to a misdemeanor under California Penal Code § 17(b).

  • When requested as part of CR-180, reduction is usually under § 17(b)(1) or § 17(b)(3). If either condition is met, check the check box in both of the highlighted parts to request a reduction.

    • As an initial matter, 17(b) reduction only applies in cases of "felony-wobblers," which are those cases that may be charged and convicted either as a misdemeanor or a felony. And felonies that carry potential sentence only of imprisonment in a state prison, i.e. "straight felonies," cannot be reduced.

    • 17(b)(1) reduction is for those cases when the defendant was convicted of a felony-wobbler and sentenced to a punishment available only for misdemeanor offenses, e.g. one-year summary probation or a term in county jail (without probation).

    • 17(b)(3) reduction is for those cases when the court granted probation without imposing any sentence on a felony-wobbler conviction.

      • Note that 17(b)(3) reduction is not available in cases where the court granted probation after first imposing a sentence. However, if the imposed sentence was one available only to misdemeanor offenses, 17(b)(1) reduction applies.

Step 5  ¶ 

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Step 5  ¶ 

  • DISMISSAL TYPE: Deciding whether California Penal Code § 1203.4 or § 1203.4a applies is relatively straightforward. The question is: was probation granted in this case?

  • If probation was granted, it's § 1203.4. Check the box highlighted in red under paragraph 3 and the box next to 1203.4 in the paragraph below.

    • If the petitioner (1) paid all fines ordered as condition/term of probation, (2) was never found in violation of probation, and (3) did not commit a new criminal offense during the period of probation, check the box next to "a" in paragraph 3.

    • If the petition's probation was terminated early, check the box next to"b" in paragraph 3.

    • In all other cases (i.e. if the petitioner served out the full probation period and (1) didn't pay some or all fines, (2) was found in violation of probation, or (3) committed a new criminal offense during the probation) check the box next to "c" in paragraph 3.

      • If the box 3(c) is checked, the petitioner is strongly advised to submit evidence of rehabilitation and statements regarding his/her needs for the dismissal. See this how-to.

  • If probation was not granted, it's § 1203.4a. Check the FIRST box highlighted in blue under paragraph 3 and the box next to 1203.4a in the paragraph below.

    • The SECOND box in paragraph 3 is tricky, because this version of CR-180 does not reflect the latest version of California Penal Code § 1203.4a. But leave it unchecked, only if the petitioner committed a new criminal offense within 1 year of the sentencing--and prepare supplemental evidence. See this how-to.

Step 6  ¶ 

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Step 6  ¶ 

  • CASE INFORMATION: The rest of CR-180 is easy to fill out, once you have all the necessary information. Read the how-to on reading a DOJ rap sheet and reading a case printout from the Los Angeles Superior Court if you're not sure where to get the necessary information.

  • Date of sentencing: The date of conviction, legally speaking, is the date the court pronounced judgment, i.e. sentencing, subsequent to the finding or plea of guilty (or no contest). Enter the date that the court pronounced sentencing in this case.

  • Section: This field and the next together refer to the particular "code" and "section" of which the petitioner was convicted. Section is a number, followed by subdivision, paragraph, and subparagraph in parentheses, as necessary. For example, domestic battery is section 243(e)(1) of the Penal Code, so you'd put 243(e)(1) here.

  • Code: Possibilities are many but limited. It will likely be: Penal, Health & Safety, Vehicle, Welfare & Institutions, or Municipal.

  • Offense Type: Note that there is no box to check for infraction. For infractions, draw a box next to felony and write infraction next to it. And then check that box you just drew.

    • Note that a case could start with a felony charge and end up with a misdemeanor conviction. Or vice versa. It's also possible that a felony conviction was reduced to a misdemeanor at some point. Make sure you know what the conviction currently stands as.

  • Executed Signature: Don't forget to date and sign!

Step 7  ¶ 

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Step 7  ¶ 

  • CR-181: Remember to attach a copy of CR-181, Order for Dismissal. Leave it blank, except for the highlighted caption part.

  • The caption information on CR-181 should be identical to the caption information on CR-180.

Comments Comments are onturn off

Great way to get help for the most part its a big help

Moses, · Reply

This is so well written. It's like he or she is talking directly to me.

Thank you so much.

Bob Davis, · Reply

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