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Name: People v. Poslof
Case #: E033503
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 06/07/2004
Subsequent History: Rev. granted 9/15/04: S126183

Appellant was convicted of sex offenses with minors in 1992. He was ordered to register as a sex offender under Penal Code section 290, and did so when he was paroled in 1995. He annually updated his registration, and his most recent update was in May, 2002, in Merced County. In July, 2002, he bought a home in Twenty-Nine Palms. In August, 2002, police went to the home looking for someone else, and discovered evidence that appellant was living there with his daughter. A records check determined that he was a registered sex offender and had not registered in Twenty-Nine Palms. Appellant was charged with failing to register as a sex offender in Twenty-Nine Palms. He maintained at trial that he was not required to register at the Twenty-Nine Palms home because his sole residence was in Merced and did not stay in Twenty-Nine Palms more than five working days. He was convicted and in this appeal argued that there was insufficient evidence to support the finding that he wilfully failed to register. He also argued that CALJIC 1.20 as modified by the court erroneously instructed the jury on the “wilfullness” requirement of section 290. The appellate court rejected both arguments. There was sufficient evidence that appellant knew of his duty to register. He signed documents which stated that he was required to register more than one residence address, and there was substantial evidence he owned a home in Twenty-Nine Palms and was living there with his daughter. The evidence was sufficient to support a finding that appellant’s connection to the residence was not a brief trip or transitory relationship, and that he knew he was required to register and failed to do so. Further, the instructions as a whole properly defined wilfulness; it instructed the jury that it must find the defendant had actual knowledge of the duty to register and failed to do so.