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Name: People v. Hargrove
Case #: C032547
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 02/19/2002
Subsequent History: Rev. denied, op. withdrawn by order of court. 5/15/02.
Summary

The trial court did not err in instructing the jury on four independent theories of first degree murder. Here a gang invaded a house, and repeatedly beat the victim. Defendant and another were armed. Defendant aimed at the victim and then lowered the gun, then raised it and shot the vicim, despite being told not to do so. The appellate court rejected defendant’s claim of right defense to felony-murder based upon his codefendant’s claim of right to retrieve a firearm from the victim. The claim of right defense applies only to a principal. Nor could the codefendant claim it here, where he was prohibited from possessing firearms based upon his criminal record. Also, based upon the facts of the case, the jury could conclude that the murder would be a natural and probable consequence of the assault and battery on the victim. Finally, the record indicated the verdict was actually based upon a theory of willful, premeditated, and deliberated murder based upon an accomplice’s testimony about the murder.