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Name: People v. Le
Case #: C049687
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 02/28/2006

A sentence enhancement for great bodily injury is proper even if the victim suffers only soft tissue and muscular injuries. Appellant argued that the trial court erred in imposing enhancements under Penal Code sections 12022.53, subdivision (d), and 12022.7, because the injuries suffered by the victim when he was shot through the leg did not amount to great bodily injury as defined by section 12022.7. In particular, appellant argued that the Legislature could not have meant to apply the “draconian punishment” of section 12022.53, subdivision (d), to a soft tissue injury. The court rejected the argument, noting that the Legislature chose to define great bodily injury in section 12022.53 by reference to section 12022.7, and that section 12022.7 has not been amended since the California Supreme Court held in People v. Escobar (1992) 3 Cal.4th 740 that “great bodily injury” need not meet any particular standard for severity or duration, but must simply be a substantial injury beyond that inherent in the offense itself. The court also rejected an argument that the court security fine mandated under Penal Code section 1465.8 applies only to Vehicle Code offenses.