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Name: Packer v. Superior Court (Ventura County)
Case #: B229369
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 6
Opinion Date: 11/28/2011

Under the present state of the law, the bias of a grand juror is not a ground for setting aside an indictment. A grand jury returned an indictment charging petitioner with three counts of murder and robbery. Petitioner filed a motion pursuant to Penal Code section 995 to dismiss the indictment, claiming he had a due process right to an unbiased grand jury. Under section 995, an indictment may not be set aside on the ground of bias of a grand juror. (People v. Kempley (1928) 205 Cal. 441.) Nevertheless, petitioner claimed that his due process right to an unbiased grand jury should prevail and the rule stated in Kempley set aside. The court declined to reach the issue as petitioner had failed to meet his burden in demonstrating that the juror in question, a secretary for the police task force, was actually biased.