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If you are convicted of a crime in San Diego, you may be able to reverse the conviction by appealing your case. And while many people are aware that a conviction may be appealed, there is a lot of misinformation out there about the process. Below are some facts to help clear things up regarding criminal appeals in San Diego.


  • An appeal isn’t a new trial Contrary to popular belief, an appeal isn’t a new trial. This means that the appeals court won’t retry your case or consider any new evidence when making their decision. Rather, the appeals court will review your conviction to determine if any mistakes were made to warrant a reversal of your conviction.


  • You can’t file an appeal simply because you aren’t happy with the result of your trial – Simply being convicted of a crime at trial isn’t a good enough reason to file an appeal. However, if the court made a mistake during your trial, you may have grounds for an appeal. Not just any mistake will do, though. Rather, the court must determine whether the mistake that was made was a reversible error or a harmless error, with the former resulting in an appeal.


  • There is a deadline for filing an appeal – If you are convicted of a crime and think that you may have grounds for an appeal, you need to act fast. Misdemeanor conviction appeals must be filed no more than 30 days from the date of sentencing, while felony appeals must be filed within 60 days of sentencing.

Misdemeanor conviction appeals must be filed no more than 30 days

  • You may still have options even if you lose your appeal Even if your conviction is confirmed by the appellate court, you may be able to file a petition for a rehearing, but it must be filed within 15 days of the appellate court’s decision.


  • Even if your appeal is successful, your case isn’t over If your appeal is successful, your case will be remanded to the lower court. After the case is remanded, it will be up to the prosecutor to decide how to proceed. He or she may pursue a plea bargain with you, retry your case, or drop the charges. This assistance of an experienced San Diego criminal law attorney will often give you the best chance of receiving a favorable result following a remand.


San Diego Post-Conviction Relief Attorneys


Due to the potential consequences involved, it is important that anyone convicted of a crime in San Diego, California, seek the guidance of an experienced post-conviction relief attorney. At the Law Offices of Kerry L. Armstrong, our experienced post-conviction relief attorneys provide all of our clients with expert legal guidance in order to achieve the most favorable results possible. The talent and experience of our San Diego, California, attorneys ensures that our clients’ criminal appeals are handled expertly and with the utmost care. If you or a loved one is has been convicted of a crime in California and would like to pursue an appeal, please contact us immediately for a free consultation.

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Kerry L. Armstrong

Attorney Kerry Armstrong opened up his law firm, the Law Offices of Kerry L. Armstrong, APLC, in June 2007. Prior to that, he was employed as the senior associate attorney for a large criminal defense firm in San Diego for nine years, eventually being placed in charge of that firm’s branch office in downtown San Diego. At one point, he was managing six attorneys at that firm, as well as several support staff and law clerks. In 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 Mr. Armstrong was selected for inclusion in the California Super Lawyers list, an honor only awarded to 5% of the nation’s attorneys. In 2017, he was also selected for the Super Lawyers Top 50 in San Diego list. In 2014, he was selected as a Top Attorney by Los Angeles Magazine. Additionally, Mr. Armstrong was also named as a Top Attorney by the San Diego Business Journal in 2014.

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