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Name: People v. Scott
Case #: H037681
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 6 DCA
Opinion Date: 11/14/2013

Where the prosecution successfully moves to dismiss the only felony charged in an information and files a misdemeanor complaint, the appellate department of the superior court has jurisdiction over the appeal. After a preliminary hearing, Scott was held to answer on a felony robbery charge. The prosecution subsequently filed an information with the robbery charge and misdemeanor charges of grand theft, disturbing the peace, and battery. Thereafter the prosecution moved to dismiss the robbery for insufficient evidence. Scott pled not guilty to the misdemeanor charges. On the day set for trial the prosecution filed a “First Amended” misdemeanor complaint, charging three misdemeanors. After a jury trial, Scott was found guilty. He filed a “misdemeanor” notice of appeal. On appeal, Scott urged jurisdiction was appropriate in the Court of Appeal because of the initially filed information. The Court of Appeal transferred the case to the superior court. The Supreme Court thereafter granted interlocutory review and transferred the case to the Court of Appeal to decide the jurisdictional question. Held: Appellate jurisdiction vested in the superior court. Under California Rules of Court, rule 8.304 the determination whether an appeal should be heard in the Court of Appeal or appellate division of the superior court is made by examining the accusatory pleading. If at least one felony is charged, jurisdiction lies in the Court of Appeal. Here, the felony count was dismissed before trial and the prosecution filed an “amended” complaint alleging three misdemeanors. Thus, Scott was not charged with a felony.