Public Safety

Facing intense scrutiny regarding officers’ use-of-force and privacy concerns related to technology deployment, public safety agencies turn to Best Best & Krieger LLP for guidance on evolving laws, help in establishing legally compliant policies and protocols, and for zealous litigation defense.
 
Unrivaled Experience
Representing public safety agencies for decades, BB&K attorneys have extensive experience advising and defending law enforcement agencies throughout California. Our team members come from government practice, have worked directly with mayors, city councils, city managers and their staff, and served as prosecutors with the District Attorney and Attorney General offices. We possess an insider’s perspective and first-hand experience regarding the challenges our clients must address, and this enhances our ability to effectively represent their interests.
 
Comprehensive Service
From advice on alleged constitutional violations involving detentions, arrests, searches and seizures to the use of cutting-edge technologies and new gun control legislation, BB&K’s Public Safety attorneys provide policy and training guidance, conduct impartial third-party investigations, offer opinions in sensitive or politically charged situations, and aggressively defend public safety agencies and their personnel in federal and state courts.
 
We regularly advise on and defend our clients regarding the following:

  • Emerging police technology, including body-worn cameras, drones and license plate readers
  • Public Records Act requests
  • Police and municipality liability claims
  • Premises liability, including dangerous condition cases
  • Pitchess motions and gun confiscation hearings
  • Employment-related issues, officer discipline and labor contract negotiations
  • Internal affairs reviews
  • Regionalization and consolidation of public safety operations
  • Public integrity and ethics issues
  • Code enforcement matters including inspection warrants and receiverships
  • Claimed civil rights violations, including excessive force, illegal search and seizure, vehicle pursuits, K-9 deployments, privacy violations, among others
 

Our attorneys provide 24-7 administrative investigation/critical incident response assistance in officer-involved shootings and other critical incidents involving police officers. Additionally, we regularly advise on legal developments and work closely with our public safety agencies on risk management strategies and the use, storage, reproduction, duplication and deletion of evidence.

Jeffrey S. Ballinger

Jeffrey S. Ballinger

Partner

(619) 525-1343

Areas of Focus: Comprehensive Code Enforcement | Economic Development, Real Estate & Affordable Housing | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Public Safety | Special Districts
Janet E. Coleson

Janet E. Coleson

Partner

(925) 977-3319

Areas of Focus: Environmental Law & Natural Resources | General & Special Counsel | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Special Districts
Howard B. Golds

Howard B. Golds

Partner

(951) 826-8339

Areas of Focus: Business | Business Litigation | Labor & Employment | Labor & Employment Litigation | Public Agency Labor & Employment
James R. Hobson

James R. Hobson

Of Counsel

(202) 370-5305

Areas of Focus: Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Government Relations | Municipal Law | Public Safety | Telecommunications
Gail A. Karish

Gail A. Karish

Partner

(213) 617-7491

Areas of Focus: California Public Utilities Commission | Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Municipal | Public Safety | Public-Private Partnerships | Telecommunications
Michael J. Maurer

Michael J. Maurer

Associate

(213) 787-2557

Areas of Focus: General & Special Counsel | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Contracts & Construction
Joshua Nelson

Joshua Nelson

Partner

(916) 551-2859

Areas of Focus: California Public Utilities Commission | Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Municipal Law | Public Safety
Gary W. Schons

Gary W. Schons

Of Counsel

(619) 525-1348

Areas of Focus: Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Safety | Special Districts
Cristina Talley

Cristina Talley

Of Counsel

(949) 263-6588

Areas of Focus: Government Policy & Public Integrity | Labor & Employment | Municipal Law | Public Agency Labor & Employment | Public Agency Litigation | Public Safety
Jill Tremblay

Jill Tremblay

Associate

(760) 200-3060

Areas of Focus: Business | Comprehensive Code Enforcement | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Special Districts | Trusts & Estates
Joseph Van Eaton

Joseph Van Eaton

Partner

(202) 370-5306

Areas of Focus: Government Relations | Municipal Law | Public Safety | Telecommunications
Dana Vessey

Dana Vessey

Associate

(213) 787-2568

Areas of Focus: Comprehensive Code Enforcement | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Safety
Charlene J. Wynder

Charlene J. Wynder

Prosecution Counsel

(909) 466-4911

Areas of Focus: Comprehensive Code Enforcement | Municipal | Public Safety
Event May 8, 2017

Proactive Planning for Driverless/Shared Mobility

APA National Planning Conference

Event May 3-5, 2017

City Attorneys' Spring Conference

League of California Cities

BB&K Event Apr 27, 2017

Short-Term Rentals: Burdens and Opportunities

BB&K Free Webinar

City and Police Officer Victorious in Malicious Prosecution and Seizure Case
Client Successes Apr 19, 2017

City and Police Officer Victorious in Malicious Prosecution and Seizure Case

BB&K Attorneys Christopher Pisano and Dana Vessey Prevail on Motion for Summary Judgment

Client Successes Apr 6, 2017

12 Orange County Cities Beat Monopoly Claims Over Ambulance Services

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuit After Argument by BB&K Partner Kendall MacVey

Event Apr 5, 2017

Cannabis Economics and Regulations

2nd Annual Regional Mayor's Summit

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuits Against 12 Orange County Cities Over Alleged Ambulance Monopolies
BB&K In the News Mar 30, 2017

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuits Against 12 Orange County Cities Over Alleged Ambulance Monopolies

BB&K Represented Several Cities

Event Mar 27-28, 2017

An Ocean of Information

SEATOA'S 2017 Annual Broadband & PEG Conference

Driverless Car Technology Speeds Along
BB&K In the News Mar 2, 2017

Driverless Car Technology Speeds Along

Sustainable City Network Discusses Autonomous Vehicles with BB&K Attorney Gregory Rodriguez

[WEBINAR] From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire Traps: Injunctions, Receiverships and Other Remedies
Videos Feb 2, 2017

[WEBINAR] From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire Traps: Injunctions, Receiverships and Other Remedies

Third in a Three-Part BB&K Webinar Series

[WEBINAR] From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire Traps: Criminal Prosecution
Videos Jan 26, 2017

[WEBINAR] From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire Traps: Criminal Prosecution

Second in a Three-Part BB&K Webinar Series

[WEBINAR] From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire Traps: Administrative Remedies
Videos Jan 19, 2017

[WEBINAR] From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire Traps: Administrative Remedies

First in a Three-Part BB&K Webinar Series

BB&K Event Jan 19 - Feb 2, 2017

From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire-Traps: How to Deal with Dangerous Dwellings in Your City

Free Three-Part Webinar Series: Jan. 19., Jan. 26 and Feb. 2

Event Jan 17-20, 2017

Amended State Bar Rules

CDAA 2017 Winter Workshop

[WEBINAR] Prop. 64: Taxing Marijuana Businesses
Videos Jan 12, 2017

[WEBINAR] Prop. 64: Taxing Marijuana Businesses

Third Webinar Jan. 12: Taxing Marijuana Businesses - Local Gov’t Authority, Limits and Possible Implications

Looking Forward: New California Laws for Public Agencies
Legal Alerts Dec 22, 2016

Looking Forward: New California Laws for Public Agencies

Laws Passed in 2016 That Will Impact Public Agency Work

[WEBINAR] Prop 64: The Basics
Videos Dec 1, 2016

[WEBINAR] Prop 64: The Basics

Cultivating New Regulations and Confronting New Challenges Presented By Marijuana Legalization

BB&K Event Nov 30, 2016

Free BB&K Webinar Series: Prop. 64 - Legalized Marijuana: Challenges and Choices

First in Series on Prop. 64: The Basics - Cultivating New Regulations and Confronting New Challenges Presented by Marijuana Legalization

Jeff Ballinger Video Bio
Videos Nov 22, 2016

Jeff Ballinger Video Bio

Partner

Marijuana Legalization Creates New Challenges and Choices for Local Governments in California
Legal Alerts Nov 17, 2016

Marijuana Legalization Creates New Challenges and Choices for Local Governments in California

Regulators Should Act to Ensure Communities are Prepared for Recreational Uses

Request to Hear Police Video Case Denied by California Supreme Court
Legal Alerts Nov 2, 2016

Request to Hear Police Video Case Denied by California Supreme Court

Ruling that Police Arrest Videos Are Not Confidential Personnel Records Will Stand

Event Oct 5-7, 2016

LCC Annual Conference

League of California Cities

Event Sep 17, 2016

Corruption-McDonnell Decision

California Political Attorneys Association Annual Retreat

Cities Mull Means to Smoke Out Tax Revenue from Recreational Weed
BB&K In the News Sep 12, 2016

Cities Mull Means to Smoke Out Tax Revenue from Recreational Weed

BB&K Partner Jeffrey Dunn Speaks with L.A. Business Journal on Prop. 64

Event Sep 8, 2016

Effective Oral Argument in the Court of Appeal

Orange County Bar Association Appellate Court Committee

FAA’s New Drone Rules Go Into Effect
Legal Alerts Sep 1, 2016

FAA’s New Drone Rules Go Into Effect

Regulations Will Speed Up Mainstreaming of Technology

Ninth Circuit Upholds Ban on Mobile Ads in Los Angeles, Other California Cities
BB&K In the News Aug 24, 2016

Ninth Circuit Upholds Ban on Mobile Ads in Los Angeles, Other California Cities

BB&K Attorney Victoria Hester Discusses Ruling with Legal Newsline

California Appellate Court Holds Police Video of Arrest Not Protected Under “Pitchess”
Legal Alerts Jul 21, 2016

California Appellate Court Holds Police Video of Arrest Not Protected Under “Pitchess”

Only a Record Generated as Part of an Internal Investigation is Protected by Pitchess

Event Jul 14, 2016

Detecting and Preventing Fraud in Government

Orange County Fraud Seminar

Ninth Circuit Upholds Cities’ Regulation of Mobile Billboards
Legal Alerts Jul 13, 2016

Ninth Circuit Upholds Cities’ Regulation of Mobile Billboards

Ordinances Declared Content-Neutral

The Good, (Potentially) Bad, and (Avoiding) the Ugly: The Benefits, Challenges, and Opportunities Driverless Vehicles Offer to Municipalities
Authored Articles & Publications Jun 29, 2016

The Good, (Potentially) Bad, and (Avoiding) the Ugly: The Benefits, Challenges, and Opportunities Driverless Vehicles Offer to Municipalities

BB&K Attorney Gregory Rodriguez Looks Down the Road in Municipal Lawyer Magazine

Public Safety Technologies: Big Brother and the Fourth Amendment
Authored Articles & Publications Jun 29, 2016

Public Safety Technologies: Big Brother and the Fourth Amendment

BB&K Attorney Gary Schons Examines the Intersection of Technology, Law and Public Safety for Municipal Lawyer Magazine

Weaving Together the Strands of Big Data Policy and Practice in Local Government
Authored Articles & Publications Jun 29, 2016

Weaving Together the Strands of Big Data Policy and Practice in Local Government

BB&K Partner Joseph Van Eaton Co-Authors a Look at Data Use by Local Government in The State Bar of California Public Law Section’ Public Law Journal

Event Apr 16-17, 2016

2016 Mid-Year Seminar

International Municipal Lawyers Association

Authored Articles & Publications Apr 14, 2016

Expanding Horizons: Drone Regulations from a Prosecutorial Perspective

BB&K Attorney Jordan Ferguson Writes About the Criminal Side of Drones for the California District Attorneys Association's Prosecutor's Brief

Body-Worn Cameras, the Prosecutor, and the Question of Public Access
Authored Articles & Publications Apr 14, 2016

Body-Worn Cameras, the Prosecutor, and the Question of Public Access

BB&K Attorney Gary Schons Examines Police Body Cameras From a Variety of Angles for the California District Attorneys Association's Prosecutor's Brief

Counties and Special Districts Prohibited from Enacting Substantially Similar Ordinance Subsequent to a Referendum Petition
Legal Alerts Apr 13, 2016

Counties and Special Districts Prohibited from Enacting Substantially Similar Ordinance Subsequent to a Referendum Petition

California Appellate Court Addresses Prohibition in Medical Marijuana Dispensary Ordinance Referendum Opinion

Authored Articles & Publications Mar 20, 2016

Best in Law: Drones - Technology Poised to Lift Business Operations

BB&K Attorney Jordan Ferguson Writes in the Riverside Press-Enterprise Best in Law Column About Regulators Facing a Difficult Task to Keep up With Drones

The State of Our Autonomy is... Moving Fast, Optimistic and Filled with Regulatory Questions
Legal Alerts Mar 17, 2016

The State of Our Autonomy is... Moving Fast, Optimistic and Filled with Regulatory Questions

Cities Need to Climb on Board or Be Left Behind

Event Mar 3, 2016

Considerations for Wetlands Practitioners

CLE International

Event Feb 24, 2016

Public Records Request Panel

National Body Cam Technology & Policy Summit and Expo

Barrister Lays Down Law on Good Cooking
BB&K In the News Feb 10, 2016

Barrister Lays Down Law on Good Cooking

BB&K Attorney Gary Schons Discusses His Worldwide Culinary Adventures With the San Diego Union-Tribune

Deadline Removed for Local Government Regulation of Medical Marijuana Cultivation in California
Legal Alerts Feb 8, 2016

Deadline Removed for Local Government Regulation of Medical Marijuana Cultivation in California

Cities Will Have More Time to Regulate

New California Law Enforcement Reporting Requirements for Officer-Involved Shootings and Use of Force
Legal Alerts Dec 29, 2015

New California Law Enforcement Reporting Requirements for Officer-Involved Shootings and Use of Force

Attorney General Hopes Data Will Promote Transparency

California Appellate Court Clarifies Proper Amount of Evidence Required to Support Restitution Order
Legal Alerts Dec 22, 2015

California Appellate Court Clarifies Proper Amount of Evidence Required to Support Restitution Order

Question Considered in Graffiti Abatement Case

New California Laws Impacting Public Agencies
Legal Alerts Dec 18, 2015

New California Laws Impacting Public Agencies

This comprehensive round-up includes new legislation that will impact cities, counties, special districts and schools.

Event Oct 29, 2015

New Horizons: Drones and Regulatory Challenges for 21st Century Law Enforcement

Big Independent Cities Excess Pool

Event Oct 8, 2015

On-Body Cameras: Answering the Tough Questions from Empirical, Policy, and Legal Perspectives

National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement

Event Oct 6, 2015

Drones, Phones, and Automobiles

American Planning Association, California Chapter Northern Annual Conference

California Supreme Court Holds Prosecutors Must File Pitchess Motions to Examine Police Personnel Records
Legal Alerts Jul 9, 2015

California Supreme Court Holds Prosecutors Must File Pitchess Motions to Examine Police Personnel Records

Law Enforcement Agencies Should Seek Guidance When Prosecutors Ask to Review Officer-Witness Files

Hotels Need Not Provide Guest Registry to Law Enforcement
Legal Alerts Jun 23, 2015

Hotels Need Not Provide Guest Registry to Law Enforcement

U.S. Supreme Court Strikes Down Los Angeles City Ordinance Requiring Hotel Operators to Provide Guest Register Records to Police Officers on Demand

BB&K Police Bulletin: Arresting Armed, Mentally Ill Suspects
Legal Alerts May 26, 2015

BB&K Police Bulletin: Arresting Armed, Mentally Ill Suspects

Officers May Have Immunity from Liability, Supreme Court Says

Authored Articles & Publications May 15, 2015

Shifting Landscapes: Regulatory Challenges Stemming from Emerging Technologies

BB&K's Jordan Ferguson Writes in the California Bar's Public Law Journal on How Technology Impacts Public Agencies and Policymakers

Law Enforcement Data May Not Be Subject to PRA
Legal Alerts May 8, 2015

Law Enforcement Data May Not Be Subject to PRA

California Appellate Court Holds Police Do Not Need to Disclose Automatic License Plate Reader Data

Event May 8, 2015

Body Worn Cameras: Federal and State Legal Issues for Municipalities and Public Safety Departments

International Municipal Lawyers Association

Event May 6-7, 2015

LCC City Attorneys’ Spring Conference

League of California Cities

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Prolonging Traffic Stop to Conduct Dog Sniff is Unconstitutional
Legal Alerts Apr 22, 2015

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Prolonging Traffic Stop to Conduct Dog Sniff is Unconstitutional

Canine Olfactory Investigation Without Reasonable Suspicion Violates Fourth Amendment

GPS Monitoring of Sex Offenders Is a Fourth Amendment Search
Legal Alerts Apr 6, 2015

GPS Monitoring of Sex Offenders Is a Fourth Amendment Search

U.S. Supreme Court Decision Another Reminder that Sex Offender Restrictions are Under Scrutiny

Legal Alerts Mar 31, 2015

Ninth Circuit to Rehear Second Amendment Case

Case Challenges San Diego County Sheriff’s Policy on Issuance of Concealed Carry Permits

Rulings Prompt California Sex Offender Residency Regulations Change
Legal Alerts Mar 30, 2015

Rulings Prompt California Sex Offender Residency Regulations Change

Local Municipalities’ Practices Likely to be Impacted

Ninth Circuit Draws Clear Distinction Between California’s Meeting Disruption Statutes
Legal Alerts Mar 23, 2015

Ninth Circuit Draws Clear Distinction Between California’s Meeting Disruption Statutes

Skid Row Demonstration Disrupts a Neighborhood “Walk,” But Police Make an Arrest for the Wrong Violation

Attorney Gets Into the Weeds on Marijuana and Commercial Real Estate
BB&K In the News Mar 12, 2015

Attorney Gets Into the Weeds on Marijuana and Commercial Real Estate

BB&K Attorney Seena Samimi Presented Laws and Data Around Medical Marijuana Dispensaries for Property Owners at a Sacramento CREW Lunch, as Reported by the Sacramento Business Journal

California Supreme Court Rules Residency Restrictions are Nonpunitive
Legal Alerts Mar 5, 2015

California Supreme Court Rules Residency Restrictions are Nonpunitive

Two Sex Offender Opinions in One Day Should Prompt Local Governments to Reevaluate Regulations

California Supreme Court: Sex Offender Residency Restrictions Unconstitutional
Legal Alerts Mar 3, 2015

California Supreme Court: Sex Offender Residency Restrictions Unconstitutional

Opinion Likely to Impact Cities’ Policies

New Rules on Location of Wireless 911 Calls
Legal Alerts Feb 12, 2015

New Rules on Location of Wireless 911 Calls

FCC Wants Technology Transmitting Location of Indoor 911 Calls from Cell Phones

No Time Restrictions on PRA Information from Police Agencies
Legal Alerts Jan 27, 2015

No Time Restrictions on PRA Information from Police Agencies

Court of Appeal Rules No Time Limit on Records, but Burden on Agency May be Considered

BB&K Police Bulletin: Investigatory Stop Still Valid Even If Officer Made Mistake of Law
Legal Alerts Dec 15, 2014

BB&K Police Bulletin: Investigatory Stop Still Valid Even If Officer Made Mistake of Law

An Officer’s Objectively Reasonable Mistake of Law Can Support Finding of Probable Cause

Pitchess Motions in Administrative Hearings
Legal Alerts Dec 3, 2014

Pitchess Motions in Administrative Hearings

California Supreme Court Holds Administrative Hearing Officers Have Authority to Grant Pitchess Motions for Discovery of Personnel Disciplinary Records

Cities Can Offset Cracked Sidewalk Liability
Authored Articles & Publications Oct 14, 2014

Cities Can Offset Cracked Sidewalk Liability

BB&K Attorney Jessica Lomakin Writes in the Daily Journal About Options Municipalities Have in Defending Against Costly “Trip and Fall” Accidents on Public Sidewalks

Legal Alerts Oct 1, 2014

Governor Signs Two Gun-Related Bills; Vetoes One

Restraining Order and Toy Gun Bills Approved; Gun Registration Bill Vetoed

Legal Alerts Sep 29, 2014

New Law Expands Local Control Over Massage Industry

Law Revises Legislation Set to Sunset This Year

Prosecutors are Entitled to Direct Access to Peace Officer Personnel Records
Legal Alerts Aug 15, 2014

Prosecutors are Entitled to Direct Access to Peace Officer Personnel Records

Appellate Court Says No Pitchess Motion Required to Determine if Records Contain Brady Material

BB&K Police Bulletin: Police Order To “Stay Put” While Conducting Background Check Is A Seizure Under Fourth Amendment
Legal Alerts Jul 21, 2014

BB&K Police Bulletin: Police Order To “Stay Put” While Conducting Background Check Is A Seizure Under Fourth Amendment

The Command Can Implicate Municipal Liability

Best Best & Krieger Launches BBKnowledge
Press Releases Jan 22, 2014

Best Best & Krieger Launches BBKnowledge

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