Probation officers prepare pre-sentence investigation (PSI) reports that contain information about the nature of the offense, character, history, and family environment of the defendant, victim impact statements, and restitution. The recommendations for sentencing are presented to the Court, and it is the judge’s discretion to accept the recommendation or hand down a different sentence. Before writing the report, the probation officer meets with the defendant to gather the necessary information. The probation officer may also include any information learned during the interview in the report.
The unit also conducts timely bail assessment reports to assist the Court in making an informed decision regarding a defendant’s release status from custody. The bail assessment report includes the defendant’s criminal history, circumstances of the present offense, and any other pertinent information the Court may need to know.
Lastly, the unit prepares Proposition 63 firearm eligibility forms for the Court. Proposition 63 enacted a court process that attempts to ensure prohibited individuals do not continue to have firearms. The measure required the Court to inform individuals prohibited from owning a firearm that they surrender their firearms over to local law enforcement, sell their firearms to a licensed dealer, or give their firearms to a dealer for storage.
The Court provides the defendant with the Prohibited Persons Relinquishment (PPR) Form at the time of conviction, which informs the defendant about his or her obligation to comply with the law. The Court refers the matter to the Probation Department to investigate if the defendant still owns firearms and if those firearms have been relinquished or are in compliance with the law.