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Name: People v. Pelayo
Case #: A123042
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 05/06/2010

The amendment to Penal Code section 4019 applies retroactively. The appellate court granted a petition for rehearing to consider whether the appellant should receive the benefit of the amendment to section 4019. The court found it unnecessary to “attempt any Delphic insights into the legislative purpose to conclude” it should apply the principles of In re Estrada (1965) 63 Cal.2d 740. The court noted the presumption of prospective application found in Penal Code section 3 is not a “straightjacket” to “be followed blindly.” The court found it important that Estrada was reaffirmed in People v. Nasalga (1996) 12 Cal.4th 784, 792, fn. 7, on the ground of legislative acquiescence, and that in intervening 30 years the Supreme Court repeatedly applied that case. The court pointed out that in at least four cases, the appellate courts have applied Estrada to amendments in credits statutes. (See People v. Hunter (1977) 68 Cal.App. 3d 389; People v. Sandoval (1977) 70 Cal.App.3d 73, People v. Doganiere (1978) 86 Cal.App.3d 237, and People v. Smith (1979) 98 Cal.App.3d 793.) The Legislature is presumed to know the case law, and since these cases were decided it has amended section 4019 twice without expressly stating the amendments apply prospectively only. Based on these facts, the court found legislative acquiescence for retroactive application of the amendment.