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Name: People v. Christopher
Case #: D045112
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 02/16/2006

On appeal from his conviction for multiple offenses included resisting arrest in violation of Penal Code section 148 (a)(1), appellant contended that his conviction for that offense should be reversed because the court prejudicially erred by instructing the jury with an impermissible mandatory conclusive presumption that giving a false name to a peace officer constitutes willfully resisting, obstructing, or delaying, a peace officer. The appellate court affirmed, finding that appellant’s failure to timely object to the jury instruction waived his right to raise it on appeal. Not only did appellant not object to the instruction, but when the jury asked for a clarification of the instruction, appellant accepted the court’s response, which again referenced the giving of a false name as a basis for finding guilt. Further, there was no miscarriage of justice because the record contained substantial evidence that appellant not only refused to disclose his identity, but that he intentionally sought to mislead officers by falsely identifying himself. It did not matter that police eventually succeeded in determining appellant’s true identity. The court also held that there was sufficient evidence that appellant resisted arrest. The act of falsely identifying oneself may properly be characterized as a willful act of obstructing a peace officer in the discharge of his duties. Also, on the facts of the case, the availability of punishment under section 148.9 did not bar appellant’s conviction of violating section 148(a)(1).