Judge Reduces DUI Felony to Misdemeanor and Expunges Record of Man After 27 Years

By Sofia Leguria

SACRAMENTO, CA – After 27 years, a Sacramento father and business owner successfully petitioned a Sacramento County Superior Court judge here Friday that he’s turned his life around and paid his debt to society.

Sam Doe, originally convicted for a DUI in 1994, has his charge reduced to a misdemeanor and his record expunged.

(Sam Doe is not the real name of the petitioner – The Vanguard does not print names of those involved in misdemeanor crimes).

Doe’s lawyer Kevin Mighetto filed motions 17(b) and 1203.4 to clear his record of prior convictions.

California Penal Code Section 17(b) gives people who have been convicted of a felony a chance to have the charge reduced to a misdemeanor when the crime is one that could have been charged as either a felony or misdemeanor.

Deputy District Attorney Kelly Jobe’s only objection was that the DUI case did result in some injury, and Doe did have a record leading up to that point. But that objection was short-lived.

It was noted there was no police report for this case on file because of the age of the conviction, so it was difficult to determine the extent of those alleged injuries.

Mighetto said, “My argument to the DA would be, when is it enough? Is their position that he is permanently beyond rehabilitation and it will never be enough? And at this point he has done everything that he possibly can to make up for the mistakes that he made 27 years ago.”

Since the 1994 conviction Doe has started his own construction business, and he now employs five other people.

Doe obtained his US citizenship in 2017. He has three children… one of his sons has just graduated from Sacramento State. His daughter is thinking about becoming a correctional officer, and his other son is still in junior high school.

After listening to the changes that Doe has made in his life, Jobe said, “I don’t disagree with him, I will submit it.”

Judge Oros said, “Thank you very much I appreciate that Mr. Jobe. Certainly I think we’d all agree that long ago you (Doe) paid your debt to society and have led an honorable life. Raising his family and obtaining his citizenship, running his business.”

The judge added, “This is one of my easier calls to be honest…to provide this type of relief. I am a little resentful that he has that great head of hair but other than that I will go ahead and grant your motion. Best of luck to you and your family.”

The misdemeanor reduction as well as the expungement were both granted.

About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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