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Name: People v. Fuentes
Case #: F053785
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Opinion Date: 03/06/2009

Because the term “motive” is not synonymous with the term “intent,” there is no conflict between CALCRIM No. 370 which instruct the jury that proof of motive is not necessary to show guilt, and the instructions for the substantive gang offense and gang enhancements which require proof of intent. Appellant was charged with and convicted of murder, attempted murders, participation in a criminal street gang (Pen. Code, sec. 186.22, subd. (a)), other related crimes, and street gang enhancements. The offenses stemmed from drive-by shootings against rival gang members. On appeal, appellant argued that the motive instruction found in CALCRIM No. 370, which relieved the prosecution of proving motive, conflicted with the instructions relating to the street gang offense and enhancements, which required proof that appellant intended to further gang activity, thereby lessening the prosecutions burden of proof on the finding of intent. The appellate court observed that even though a reason for doing an act can be called a “motive” in common language, here, by listing the various intents the prosecution was required to prove to sustain a finding on the gang offense and enhancements (intent to kill, intent to further gang activity), the instructions made clear to the jury the elements it would have to find for a finding of guilt on the gang offense/enhancement irrespective of the motive instruction.