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Name: People v. Armogeda
Case #: G051197
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 09/30/2015
Subsequent History: Review granted 12/9/2015: S230374

Individual on postrelease community supervision (PRCS) is serving a “sentence” for purposes of imposing a one-year parole period under Proposition 47. Armogeda pled guilty to felony possession of heroin (Health & Saf. Code, § 11350, subd. (a)) and the court sentenced him to two years in prison. In 2013 he was released on PRCS. After Proposition 47 passed in 2014, and while he was still on PRCS, Armogeda filed a petition to reduce his felony drug conviction to a misdemeanor. The court resentenced Armogeda to a misdemeanor and placed him on a one-year period of parole pursuant to Penal Code section 1170.18, subdivision (d). Armogeda appealed, arguing that the trial court should not have imposed the parole period because he had already completed his sentence when he filed the petition. Held: Affirmed on this point. A Proposition 47 petitioner “currently serving a sentence” is generally subject to parole for a one-year period while a petitioner who has “completed his or her sentence” is not. (See Pen. Code, § 1170.18, subds. (d), (f).) Here, the trial court concluded that Armogeda was currently serving his felony sentence because he was still on PRCS. The Court of Appeal agreed. Although the word “sentence” in section 1170.18 is ambiguous concerning whether it encompasses just the prison term or the prison term and corresponding period of parole or PRCS, other sections of the Penal Code clarify that a sentence includes a period of parole supervision or PRCS. (See Pen. Code, §§ 3000, subd. (a)(1), 1170, subd. (c).) The voters who enacted Proposition 47 are presumed to be aware of this construction. Accordingly, Armogeda was properly subject to a one-year parole period. The trial court did not err.

Trial court erred by failing to credit defendant’s excess custody credits against his parole period and eligible fines. Armogeda’s also argued that the trial court erred when it declined to apply his excess custody credits toward the one-year parole period. The Court of Appeal agreed. Penal Code section 2900.5 mandates that a defendant’s excess custody credits be applied to reduce his or her parole period and eligible fines, except a restitution fine. Here, by the time the trial court resentenced Armogeda to a misdemeanor he had served nearly two years in prison and two years on PRCS. The Court of Appeal agreed with People v. Morales (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 42, which held that a Proposition 47 parole period must be reduced by excess custody credits, and disagreed with the contrary holdings and rationale of both People v. McCoy (2015) 239 Cal.App.4th 431, and People v. Hickman (2015) 237 Cal.App.4th 984. Addressing McCoy and Hickman, the Court of Appeal stated: “We do not so easily disregard the plain words and legislative goals of section 2900.5.”