This Is Something You Hope To Never Need

This Is Something You Hope To Never Need

This Is Something You Hope To Never Need

It’s a bright sunny day outside. You’re strolling around your favorite mall. You’ve decided to take a moment to yourself to indulge in a little bit of shopping. The birds are chirping and you feel completely at ease. That is until a person approaches you and asks for all your money. They didn’t ask nicely, and they appeared out of nowhere. In situations like this, what do you do?

If you’ve had the proper training, it would be wise to use it in a situation like this.

Self-defense is something we should all know.

Self-defense can range from many practices or options such as a taser, knife, gun, or pepper spray. Whatever you choose for your self-defense weapon, learn to use it properly.

Your body could be considered a self-defense weapon, if you engage in the proper training. If you’re looking for self-defense techniques, there are plenty of practices you can chose to follow:

  • Kickboxing
  • Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
  • Muay Thai
  • Krav Maga
  • Taekwondo
  • Karate
  • Boxing

If you choose to own a gun, you must do so legally. California currently has some of the strictest laws in regards to gun ownership. If you choose to a use a gun as your self-defense you need to aware of the laws. California has a Castle Doctrine that allows you to use deadly force within your home if you have a reasonable fear of peril. If an event happens outside your house, California law states you must have justifiable reason to use deadly force.

Don’t wait for an incident to happen, be prepared. Whether it’s taking karate classes or a self-defense seminar, it’s important that you are prepared. Not only should you be prepared, you should practice using you self-defense weapon of choice. Don’t just take one karate lesson and never practice it. Take classes periodically to practice, that way if an incident ever occurs, you’ll be ready.

No one ever wants to use their self-defense skills. Using them means that you’re in harm’s way or you can be seriously injured or worse. You can be hanging out with a group of friends, going to concert, or just shopping on your own and run into a bad person. Don’t let someone ruin your day of relaxation. Be prepared for the worst case scenario, but also hope for the best outcome.

 

Abuse, Threats, and Stalking Are Not Cute

Abuse, Threats, and Stalking Are Not Cute

Abuse, Threats, and Stalking Are Not Cute

Certain things in life are cute, like baby animals. Giving someone a sentimental, thinking of you, gift or complimenting someone’s outfit or attitude is cute. You know what isn’t cute? Abuse, threats and stalking. These acts are harassment. To be more precise, those actions fall under civil harassment.

Civil harassment goes beyond just being rude to someone.

Civil harassment is defined as abuse, threats of abuse, stalking, sexual assault, or serious harassment committed by someone who you have not dated and do not have a close relationship with.

If you have a close relationship with the person who is harassing you, it would be considered a domestic case.

If someone is harassing you, don’t wait to get help. Waiting for a situation to change or get better on its own risks your wellness. The more time you allow to pass, the more abuse you will have to endure. Civil harassment can be caused by aunts, uncles, cousins, and other distant relatives. Being harassed by family can make coming forward difficult because of the fear of the rest of the family becoming upset.

After reporting the harassment to the police, you can apply for a restraining order. You can ask for a civil harassment restraining order if a person has abused or threatened to abuse you and if you’re seriously scared or annoyed. Getting a restraining order is fairly simple to do in California. Some courts may charge a small fee, but the price of your safety is always worth it.

Abuse, threats of abuse, stalking, sexual assault, and serious harassment, is not normal.

Don’t allow a person who has these not-so-cute habits into your life. Only allow cute things in your like funny cat or puppy videos. Harassment should not be ignored, but dealt with in a safe manner so that you can continue living your life admiring cute things.

 

California’s Attitude Towards Illegally Obtained Evidence

California’s Attitude Towards Illegally Obtained Evidence

California’s Attitude Towards Illegally Obtained Evidence

Most of us assume that the laws about what is and what isn’t legally obtained evidence to be black and white; however, there are actually quite a few gray areas when it comes to illegally obtained evidence in California.

One example of the murkiness surrounding how evidence is obtained is a police officer who happened to notice what looked an awful lot like a drug-related transaction. Unable to ignore the situation, the officer approached the car and after a brief skirmish, the officer found that the car was full of drugs, ammo, and an alarming number of weapons. The question is, since the officer didn’t have a warrant, could the evidence be used as proof of guilt.

The Fourth Amendment was created to protect citizens from illegal search and seizures, and to make it nearly impossible for the United States to become a “police state/country.” The problem is that a lot of time has passed since the Fourth Amendment was drafted and the world has changed a great deal. In an attempt to keep up with the increasing challenges law enforcement faces and to also honor the Fourth Amendment, courts all over the country, including California, have tweaked and even created some laws about what is and isn’t illegally obtained evidence.


In the case of the evidence collected by the officer who witnessed a crime in progress, the prosecution can claim that since the officer did witness an actual crime, the evidence can be used during the trial despite the fact that the officer didn’t have a warrant allowing them to inspect the car. However, if the defense can prove that the officer was staking out the driver or didn’t actually witness a crime taking place, it’s likely that judge will rule that the evidence was in fact obtained illegally and throw out the entire case.


Whenever there’s a case involving a car and evidence, things always get complicated. Technically, an officer can’t go through your car looking for proof of illegal activities; however, if they pull you over for speeding and there’s a bag full of drugs on your backseat, they can arrest you and use the baggie of drugs as evidence.

If you’re involved in a case and don’t think the evidence was obtained with a legal search warrant, it is in your best interest to hire a good defense lawyer who has a strong understanding of the Fourth Amendment.

 

Smoking Marijuana While Driving

Smoking Marijuana While Driving

Smoking Marijuana While Driving

While the rest of the country may be debating what to do about cannabis, Californians have already decided. California recently legalized marijuana for recreational use. We followed several other states like Oregon, Washington, and Colorado. While we weren’t the first ones to legalize weed recreationally, we are still one of the eight states that allows it recreationally. However, like with alcohol and cigarettes, there are laws that have to be followed.

Arguably the most important place to follow the law is behind the wheel. When a person steps behind the wheel of a vehicle they greatly increase the chances of causing harm to someone. Vehicle related deaths are some of the highest in the nation.

Before California allowed the sale of recreational marijuana, they passed several laws in anticipation. In particular they passed a law in regards to driving while smoking. According to this law, written by Sen. Jerry Hill, if a person is caught smoking marijuana while operating a vehicle or while riding in a vehicle, they can be subjected to a violation. The violation will include a fine of $70.

This really isn’t a new law for us. It’s already illegal to drive while intoxicated. Obtaining a DUI isn’t because you were drunk, it just means you were under the influence of some kind of substance. Along with not being intoxicated while driving, you cannot have an open container of cannabis in your vehicle. This is similar to you not being allowed to have an open container of alcohol in the vehicle.

Since we are one of the few states that have legalized the use of marijuana recreationally, we have to be the role model for other states in the future. As time continues, more studies will be released in regards to the use of marijuana, which will broaden our understanding of the subject as a whole. Until then, exercise caution, and just follow the law.

 

Can They Really Tax Soda?

Can They Really Tax Soda?

Can They Really Tax Soda?

In recent years, cities across the country have begun to add an additional tax on sodas and other sugary drinks in an effort to reduce their sales. The hope with these taxes is that it will discourage people from buying the drink, and therefore help lower peoples risk of obesity and diabetes. Naturally, this is a very touchy subject for many people who dislike it when the government adds additional taxes onto things.

This all began back in 2014 when Berkeley, California became the first city in the US to put a tax on sugary drinks. The tax was 1 cent for every ounce of the drink. Since then, other cities have followed suite across the nation, which has the soda industry concerned. In fact, within California, the beverage industry is currently working on creating an initiative for the November ballot that would prevent cities from enacting taxes like this.

In order to prevent that, California lawmakers are currently working on bill AB 1838. This bill would prevent any local government from putting taxes on sugary drinks until 2031. The bill passed through the senate, and went on to be approved by Governor Jerry Brown, who signed it into law.

This means that local city governments will not be able to add taxes to sugary drinks for several years. On one hand, this means we won’t have to pay more for a soda at the store. On the other hand, it means local city governments will not be able to use this as an additional source of income. At least Californians will not have to worry about any new soda taxes for a very long time.

 

Never Try To Race A Train

Never Try To Race A Train

Never Try To Race A Train

Running across railroads is pretty common in day to day life. You may walk alongside one on your morning jog or cross one when driving to work. They are a part of everyday life, and for the most part they do not interfere. However, every once in a while you get stuck at a crossing waiting for a freight train to roll through.

If you are like most people, you find this sort of annoying. You have places to be. Others have felt the same way and attempted to race the train through the crossing. Unfortunately for that person, that was the wrong choice. Trains, especially freight trains, can be very dangerous. It is never a good idea to race them through a crossing.

On average, a freight train can weigh anywhere from 12 to 20 million pounds. Anyone who understands momentum will know that stopping that much weight in a hurry is a very big undertaking. In fact, it can take over a mile for a 12 million pound train to come to a complete stop. Long story short, a train will never be able to stop for someone or something on the tracks.

Over half of all car and train accidents occur at crossings that are equipped with automatic signals. This is due largely in part to the fact that drivers will ignore the signals and try to make it through the crossing without regard for the train. Once the signals start to flash and the arms begin to lower, wait for the train to pass.

It is not worth risking your life.

Another surprising fact, is that a quarter of all train and car collisions occur when a car drives into the side of a train. This happens to drivers who are not exercising the proper cautions for the weather conditions. They are driving too fast in wet or dark conditions, and are then unable to stop in time to avoid hitting the train. This can easily be avoided by adjusting driving habits to match current weather conditions.

If your car ever stalls or gets stuck on the tracks, get everyone out of the car and to a safe distance right away. Then call 911 and alert them to the vehicle on the tracks. They will then contact the railroad, which will halt train operations on the line in question until the car has been moved. If a train is approaching when the car is stuck, get out as quickly as possible and run away from the tracks at an angle. You want to move away from the tracks, but in the direction of the oncoming train. This will keep you safe from the debris that will be caused by the train hitting the vehicle, which will be shot out and away in the direction that the train is traveling.

For many people, crossing train tracks has become a part of their everyday life. This, unfortunately, has led to them forgetting how dangerous these crossings can be for anyone who isn’t paying enough attention. Always be aware of your surroundings near train tracks, and never try to race a train.

 

Back To School Basics

Back To School Basics

Back To School Basics

It’s been one amazing summer! We hope that you and your family have enjoyed quality time together, family vacations, playing outside, and sleeping in. As July comes to a close and we flip the page to August, there is only one thing looming in the minds of children and teens; it’s already time to gear up and head back to school. For parents, this may come as a welcome change but for their school-aged children, this may come as a time of dread.

If your family is like most others around the state of California, then the summer break has meant big changes in your daily routine. This is a welcome surprise for the summer months and allows for a lot for free time for children. However, difficulties and problems may arise when it’s time to go back to school and resume your school-year routine.

We understand that the adjustment to a school schedule can be difficult for every family and we want to help make sure that your family’s transition is as seamless as possible. We’ve scoured the internet to find a few suggestions to assist with this transition.


  • Take your child back to school shopping – You can help build excitement about returning to school by having your child participate in picking out and purchasing his or her school supplies.
  • Enforce bedtimes and wake up times a week before school begins – By starting to enforce a set sleeping schedule, your routine will be easier to start back again when the time comes.
  • Read with your child – Gear up for the school year, and inevitable homework, by setting aside 30 minutes each day to read a book with your child. This will help to get back into an educational-based routine and refresh their mind on reading skills lost in the summer months.
  • Plan after-school activities – Sit down with your child and select a few school organized or community organized after-school activities. This will give your child something to look forward to throughout the week and incentivize going to school.
  • Schedule out family meals – The first few weeks of school can be very hectic. Rather than scramble at the last minute to prepare dinner or ultimately just give in and head to fast food restaurant, plan a meal calendar for your family and purchase items in advance from the grocery store. This will help stay on track with healthy eating habits and save you some money.

There are dozens of other helpful back to school readiness tips floating around from parents like you. Do you have other suggestions about how to help prepare your children for the start of a new school year? Drop us a comment below and help out other parents. We wish you and your family a happy, healthy, and educational year!

 

The Truth About Criminal Threats

The Truth About Criminal Threats

The Truth About Criminal Threats

Threats are a part of life, a knee jerk reaction to anger, hurt feelings, and fear. Most people make threats without any intention of ever carrying them out. However, in this current world where school shootings and other heinous acts seem to be a weekly occurrence, people and members of the law enforcement community are taking threats more seriously than ever before.

Threats made on school grounds or that include a school system tend to be the first ones that law enforcement crack down on.

In these instances, law enforcement act first and ask questions later. A perfect example of this is a recent situation where a few students had a conversation about their desire to shoot up at their school in Los Angeles was overheard. The students had barely finished their conversation when police arrived on the scene and arrested both students. The charge was making criminal threats.

This type of thing is happening all over the country.

There aren’t any statistics outlining how many of the students who are charged with making criminal threats are actually doing nothing more than blowing off steam, but if the police and media are to be believed, for the most part, this is a situation of where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Police report that in many instances, after arresting a student for making criminal threats, they discover that the student was in possession of an alarming amount of firepower. An example of this is the arrest of a 17-year-old L.A. student who was arrested. When the police investigated the student’s home, they not only found 90-high-capacity magazines, but also 2 assault weapons as well as some handguns.

In California, the law is clear when it comes to making criminal threats.

California Penal Code Section 422 clearly states that making any type of verbal or written threat of death or bodily injury to another person is against the law. Comments posted on social media sites count as a written threat.

One interesting loophole In Penal Code Section 422 is that there’s no mention of gestures. At this point, this means that gestures that are symbolic to a gang or pointing a finger gun at someone doesn’t break the law. Whether or not gestures should constitute as a criminal threat was discussed in front of the California Supreme Court during the 2017 case, People v. Gonzalez. The court agreed with the defendant that gestures weren’t admissible in court. So far, the Penal Code hasn’t been amended to include the use of hand gestures as a criminal threat.

 

Keeping Cool In The Peak Of Summer

Keeping Cool In The Peak Of Summer

Keeping Cool In The Peak Of Summer

As the summer heat begins to grip the state of California, keeping cool is at the forefront of everyone’s minds. We all want to get out of the sun and find a nice air conditioned place to hide out. Luckily, California has plenty of options when it comes to keeping cool, you just need to know where to look.

When it comes to keeping cool, there are the obvious choices such as:

  • The beach
  • The pool
  • Water parks
  • Rivers
  • Lakes

However, since these options are well known, they are likely to be very crowded.

Some other options that might not be as obvious for keeping cool include:

  • Going to a movie theater
  • Going to a mall
  • Going to a library
  • Go to a museum
  • Going shopping anywhere that has AC

Most public places have air conditioning within their walls, making them good choices to visit during the peak of summer. Some will undoubtedly be more crowded than others, and it may take a bit of trial and error to find a place that works for you. Just don’t be afraid to go out there and find a fun, new way to keep cool.

Summer can be a lot of fun, provided you are able to stay cool. While hiding out in some shade, water, or air conditioned buildings will definitely help, it is also important to remember to drink plenty of water. The more you sweat, the more water your body is losing, which makes it very easy to become dehydrated during the summer months. If you are looking to cool off this summer, be sure to try out some places on this list that are near you, and be sure to stay hydrated as you do so.