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Name: People v. Walker
Case #: B254183
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 11/26/2014
Summary

When a defendant is sentenced to prison for a single incident of DUI causing injury, the trial court may impose restitution for all victims, whether or not those victims are named in the charging document. After consuming methamphetamine and alcohol, Walker drove his pickup the wrong way on the freeway and collided with eight different vehicles. He was charged with four counts of DUI causing injury (Veh. Code, § 23153, subd. (a)) and the counts named four of the nine people he hit. Walker pled no contest. The court sentenced him to prison, and stayed punishment on three of the counts pursuant to Penal Code section 654. The court also ordered Walker to pay restitution to four people, but only two of them had been named in charging document. He appealed the restitution order, arguing that the trial court exceeded its power by imposing restitution for crimes of which he was not convicted. Held: Restitution order affirmed. When a defendant is sentenced to jail or prison, like Walker, the trial court may only impose restitution for losses arising out of the “criminal conduct for which the defendant has been convicted.” Here, the criminal conduct for which Walker was convicted encompassed his collisions with all eight vehicles because there was only one instance of driving under the influence. When more than one person is injured as a result of a DUI, there is only one violation of section 23153 if the driver “collides with one car and is involuntarily propelled into a second car.” (Wilkoff v. Superior Court (1985) 38 Cal.3d 345, 349.) Although there was no preliminary hearing or trial, the prosecutor, the defense, and the trial court all treated the eight-car accident as a single incident. Therefore, the losses suffered by any of the people in the vehicles involved in the accident arose out of the criminal conduct for which Walker was convicted. The fact that the charging document did not specifically name each potential victim was irrelevant.

Trial court erred in staying three of the DUI causing injury convictions rather than dismissing them. Walker also challenged the portion of the judgment staying the last three counts of DUI causing injury under section 654. Held: Judgment modified. Wilkoff requires dismissal of multiple convictions of DUI causing injury when they all arise from a single instance of driving. Because there was only one instance of driving under the influence in this case, the three other section 23153, subdivision (a) convictions must be dismissed, not stayed.