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Name: People v. Favor
Case #: S189317
Court: CA Supreme Court
District CalSup
Opinion Date: 07/16/2012

Under the natural and probable consequences doctrine, to be liable for attempted premeditated murder, there is no requirement that an aider and abettor reasonably foresaw an attempted premeditated murder as the natural and probable consequence of the target offense. Appellant was convicted of first degree murder, attempted murder, and robbery. The prosecutor’s theory was that appellant was guilty of first degree murder under the felony-murder rule; of robbery, as an aider and abettor; and of attempted murder under the natural and probable consequences doctrine. Appellant argued that the trial court erred by not instructing the jury that it had to determine whether a reasonable person in defendant’s position would have known that premeditated attempted murder, not just attempted murder, was a natural and probable consequence of the robbery. Disapproving People v. Hart (2009) 176 Cal.App.4th 662, and upholding People v. Cummins (2005) 127 Cal.App.4th 667, the Supreme Court affirmed. Penal Code section 664, subdivision (a) (attempted murder) does not create a greater degree of attempted murder, but rather constitutes a penalty provision increasing the punishment for attempted murder beyond the maximum otherwise prescribed when the murder attempted was willful, deliberate, and premeditated. People v. Lee (2003) 31 Cal.4th 613, held that an individual could be convicted of premeditated attempted murder, as an aider and abettor, even if he did not personally act with deliberation and premeditation. The law only requires that the attempted murder has to be committed by one of the perpetrators with the requisite state of mind. With its opinion in this case, the Court extended the Lee rationale to the natural and probable consequences doctrine. Under this holding, it is sufficient that attempted murder is a reasonably foreseeable consequence of the crime aided and abetted, and the attempted murder itself was committed willfully, deliberately, and with premeditation.