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Name: Manduley v. Superior Court (San Diego County)
Case #: D036356
Opinion Date: 02/07/2001
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Citation: 86 Cal.App.4th 1198
Summary

By placing within the discretion of the prosecuting authority the determination of which of two legislatively authorized sentencing schemes are available to the courts in cases involving juveniles over the age of 16 at commission of the offense, or over the age of 14 at the time of commission of a specified qualifying offense, Proposition 21’s amendment to Welfare and Institutions Code section 707, subdivision (d), violates the separation of powers between the executive and judicial branches in violation of the California Constitution. This issue was properly raised by demurrer in the trial court, and writ review was sought. The court concluded that giving the prosecution the authority to decide whether to file in juvenile court or adult court carried with it a limitation on the court’s sentencing power after the action was initiated, and accordingly, permitted the executive branch to impinge on the judicial branch. This unconstitutional provision is severable from the rest of Proposition 21. Justices Nares dissented, positing that because the Legislature could abolish the juvenile justices system, it could take the more moderate approach of Proposition 21. By placing within the discretion of the prosecuting authority the determination of which of two legislatively authorized sentencing schemes are available to the courts in cases involving juveniles over the age of 16 at commission of the offense, or over the age of 14 at the time of commission of a specified qualifying offense, Proposition 21’s amendment to Welfare and Institutions Code section 707, subdivision (d), violates the separation of powers between the executive and judicial branches in violation of the California Constitution. This issue was properly raised by demurrer in the trial court, and writ review was sought. The court concluded that giving the prosecution the authority to decide whether to file in juvenile court or adult court carried with it a limitation on the court’s sentencing power after the action was initiated, and accordingly, permitted the executive branch to impinge on the judicial branch. This unconstitutional provision is severable from the rest of Proposition 21. Justices Nares dissented, positing that because the Legislature could abolish the juvenile justices system, it could take the more moderate approach of Proposition 21. By placing within the discretion of the prosecuting authority the determination of which of two legislatively authorized sentencing schemes are available to the courts in cases involving juveniles over the age of 16 at commission of the offense, or over the age of 14 at the time of commission of a specified qualifying offense, Proposition 21’s amendment to Welfare and Institutions Code section 707, subdivision (d), violates the separation of powers between the executive and judicial branches in violation of the California Constitution. This issue was properly raised by demurrer in the trial court, and writ review was sought. The court concluded that giving the prosecution the authority to decide whether to file in juvenile court or adult court carried with it a limitation on the court’s sentencing power after the action was initiated, and accordingly, permitted the executive branch to impinge on the judicial branch. This unconstitutional provision is severable from the rest of Proposition 21. Justices Nares dissented, positing that because the Legislature could abolish the juvenile justice system, it could take the more moderate approach of Proposition 21.