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Name: People v. Lucero
Case #: D069229
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 04/18/2016
Summary

Trial court properly instructed jury not to consider evidence of defendant’s voluntary intoxication in determining the truth of gun use allegations. A jury found Lucero guilty of multiple offenses and found true two gun use allegations (Pen. Code, § 12022.53, subds. (c), (d)). On appeal he argued the trial court erred in instructing the jury not to consider evidence of his voluntary intoxication in deciding the gun use enhancements. Held: Affirmed. Section 12022.53, subdivision (c) provides a sentence enhancement for any person who “personally and intentionally discharges a firearm” during specified felonies; subdivision (d) provides an enhancement for any person who “personally and intentionally discharges a firearm” during specified felonies and proximately causes great bodily injury or death to any person other than an accomplice. While evidence of voluntary intoxication may be admitted to determine whether a defendant actually formed the specific intent required for a crime, it is inadmissible to negate the existence of general intent. An offense requires only general intent when the definition of a crime or enhancement consists solely of the description of an act, without reference to the intent to achieve some further purpose. “When the definition refers to defendant’s intent to do some further act or achieve some additional consequence, the crime is deemed to be one of specific intent.” (People v. Hood (1969) 1 Cal.3d 444, 457.) Both subdivisions (c) and (d) of section 12022.53 refer only to the description of a particular act without reference to the defendant’s intent to achieve some additional consequence. They also do not have language that typically denotes a specific intent crime, and the use of the word “intentionally” does not indicate the statute specifies a specific intent. Thus, the enhancements require only general intent and the evidence of voluntary intoxication was inadmissible to negate the elements of the enhancements.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/D069229.PDF