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Name: People v. Mosley
Case #: B195181
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 09/19/2007
Summary

There was sufficient evidence that appellant made criminal threats despite the fact that he was incarcerated in segregated housing. Mosley, a jail inmate, made threats to numerous deputies. On one day, he pulled out a razor blade and made a slashing motion, stating, “This is for Deputy Wargo.” He was convicted of seven counts of making criminal threats, and one count of custodial possession of a weapon. The trial court selected count 1, the threat against Wargo, as the principal term. It then imposed full term consecutive sentences for counts 1 and 4. Mosley challenged the sufficiency of evidence on some of the threats because he was an inmate housed in a segregated module, and therefore there was insufficient evidence as to the “immediate prospect of execution” and “sustained fear” as to the counts in question. He made the threats to one deputy, who communicated them to the intended victims. Further, Mosley was known to be a difficult and disruptive inmate. The appellate court rejected the argument. Although Mosley was in segregated housing, the deputies knew of his ability to obtain weapons and his gang connections in the community. Mosely claimed to have “trained” another inmate who was convicted of killing a correctional officer. He claimed to have “people” on the outside who could carry out the threats. Based on all the facts, the jury could reasonably find that Mosley’s threats were unequivocal, immediate, and specific. Further, given the nature of the threats, they conveyed an immediate prospect of execution causing the victims to be in sustained fear for their safety. However, the trial court did err when it sentenced Mosely on count 4 to a full term. Section 1170.1, subdivision (a) requires that the greatest sentence be the principal term which is in this case the six-year term imposed on count 4, the weapon possession conviction. Count 1 must therefore become a 16-month subordinate term. Reversal was required so that the trial court could determine whether to also reduce the concurrent terms.