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Name: People v. Hodges
Case #: C059391
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 06/09/2009
Summary

Requirement of certificate of probable cause did not violate appellant’s constitutional rights. Hodges appealed a conviction based on his guilty plea to failure to register as a sex offender and admission of a prior felony conviction. He failed to obtain a certificate of probable cause. On appeal, he challenged the propriety of a sentence enhancement for the prior felony conviction, and also asserted that his mental incompetence at the time of the plea rendered it invalid. Because the lack of a certificate of probable cause imposed a procedural bar to the arguments, he contended that his federal due process and equal protection rights were violated by the certificate of probable cause requirement. The appellate court held that Hodges’ failure to obtain a certificate of probable cause barred the appeal. Further, the certificate of probable cause requirement does not violate the due process and equal protection clauses. Hodges’ constitutional rights were not violated by requiring him to request trial counsel’s assistance with the filing a notice of appeal and a request for certificate of probable cause.