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Name: People v. Ringo
Case #: B177196
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 12/07/2005

A defendant’s pre-Proposition 21 conviction for making a criminal threat qualifies as a serious felony under Penal Code section 667. Before the adoption of Proposition 21, a criminal threat as defined by Penal Code section 422 was not a serious felony. Proposition 21 added section 422 to the list of serious felonies. The plain language of section 667, subdivision (a), states that the date for determining if a prior conviction is a serious felony is the date of the new offense. At the time that the defendant committed his current offenses, section 422 was a serious felony, and thus a five-year enhancement was appropriately added to his sentence. The court further rejected defendant’s argument that he was denied access to the courts and law libraries when he was representing himself, because defendant failed to raise those arguments in the trial court, was assisted by advisory counsel, and failed to show prejudice. He likewise failed to establish that advisory counsel had a conflict of interest or that the verdict was not supported by substantial evidence.