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Name: People v. Letteer
Case #: H021920
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 6 DCA
Opinion Date: 11/27/2002
Subsequent History: None

Appellant pleaded guilty to possession of methamphetamine and admitted three prior “strikes.” At sentencing, Judge Ball dismissed two of appellant’s strikes, and the prosecutor challenged the dismissal of the strikes in a writ of mandate. The appellate court granted the writ and ordered the strikes reinstated. On remand, the prosecutor disqualified Judge Ball from resentencing appellant, and the sentencing proceeded over appellant’s objection before Judge Teilh. Appellant was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison. In this appeal, appellant claimed that sentencing by Judge Teilh violated the terms of the plea bargain. The appellate court here agreed and reversed. An implied term of the plea bargain was that Judge Ball, who took the plea, would impose sentence. Because appellant was not allowed to withdraw his plea after the the prosecution removed Judge Ball, sentencing by Judge Teilh violated his plea bargain. Under Arbuckle, appellant’s sentence “cannot be allowed to stand.”