Probation condition requiring defendant convicted of possessing methamphetamine for sale to maintain a residence approved by the probation officer was constitutionally valid. The defendant was convicted of possession of methamphetamine for sale and granted probation. One of the conditions of probation required her to maintain a residence approved by her probation officer. On appeal, she argued the condition was unconstitutionally overbroad and violated her rights to travel and freedom of association. Held: Affirmed. Trial courts are given broad discretion in fashioning terms of probation in order to foster the reformation and rehabilitation of the offender while protecting public safety. A restriction is unconstitutionally overbroad if it impinges on constitutional rights, and is not tailored carefully and reasonably related to the compelling state interest in reformation and rehabilitation. Although conditions requiring prior approval of a probationer’s residence may affect the constitutional rights to travel and freedom of association, courts have the authority to impose such conditions if there is an indication the probationer’s living situation contributed to the crime or would contribute to future criminality. There was nothing in the record to indicate that the term was imposed to effectively banish the defendant from a particular neighborhood or from living where she desired. The condition presumes that a probation officer would not withhold approval for irrational or capricious reasons. The approval condition allowed the probation officer to supervise defendant’s residence, because the nature of her crime suggested a need for oversight. The probation officer can limit her exposure to sources of temptation for future criminality by, for example, not approving residences in close proximity to other drug dealers. And, if the probation officer disapproves of a particular residence for any arbitrary reason, the defendant may file a petition for modification of her probation condition.
The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/G054483.PDF