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Must Gang Enhancements Be Vacated Based on Changes Made By AB 333

Must any of defendant's sentencing enhancements be vacated due to recent statutory changes requiring that the offenses necessary to establish a " 'pattern of criminal gang activity' . . . commonly benefited a criminal street gang, and the common benefit from the offense is more than reputational" (Pen. Code, § 186.22, subd. (e)(1), as amended by Stats. 2021, ch. 699,…

Case: People v. Cooper (2023) __ Cal.5th __
Case Number: S273134/B304490
Updated: May 25, 2023
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Adequate Exercise of Discretion Under In re Manzy W.?

Did the Court of Appeal err in ruling that the trial court adequately exercised its discretion to determine whether the juvenile's offenses were felonies or misdemeanors as required by Welfare and Institutions Code section 702 and In re Manzy W. (1997) 14 Cal.4th 1199? Opinion by: Justice Liu (unanimous) Held: “Welfare and Institutions Code section 702 provides that when a minor is…

Case: In re F.M. (2023) __ Cal.5th __
Case Number: S270907
Updated: May 4, 2023
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When Does AG Have Duty to Disclose Brady Material During Habeas Proceedings

When a habeas petitioner claims not to have received a fair trial because the district attorney failed to disclose material evidence in violation of Brady v. Maryland (1963) 373 U.S. 83--and when the Attorney General has knowledge of, or is in actual or constructive possession of, such evidence--what duty, if any, does the Attorney General have to acknowledge or disclose that evidence…

Case: In re Jenkins (2023) ___ Cal.5th ___
Case Number: S267391/B301638
Updated: March 27, 2023
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Continuing Hearing on Motion to Suppress When Denying Continuance Would Result in Dismissal

Did the trial court err in granting the People's motion under Penal Code section 1050 to continue the hearing on a motion to suppress evidence, when it was reasonably foreseeable that denying the continuance would result in a dismissal of the case but the People otherwise failed to show good cause for a continuance? Held: "This case involves a motion…

Case: People v. Brown (2023) __ Cal.5th ___
Case Number: S271877/H048462
Updated: March 27, 2023
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Judicial Fact Finding at Sentencing When Jury Failed to Reach a Verdict

Did the sentencing court err by finding petitioner's conviction for battery with serious bodily injury was a serious felony (Pen. Code, §§ 667, subd. (a)(1), 1192.7, subd. (c)(8)), despite the jury's failure to reach a verdict on the allegation that petitioner personally inflicted great bodily injury in committing that offense? (See Apprendi v. New Jersey (2000) 530 U.S. 466; Blakely v. Washington (2004) 542…

Case: In re Cabrera (2023) __ Cal.5th __
Case Number: S271178
Updated: March 2, 2023
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Murder–Instruction on Elements of First Degree Murder By Poison

(1) Did the trial court err in instructing the jury on the elements of first degree murder by poison (see People v. Steger (1976) 16 Cal.3d 539, 544?546; People v. Mattison (1971) 4 Cal.3d 177, 183?184, 186)? (2) Was any such instructional error prejudicial? Held: The District Attorney charged Brown with first degree murder and prosecuted the charge on the theory that Brown…

Case: People v. Brown (2023) __ Cal.5th __
Case Number: S257631
Updated: March 2, 2023
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Illegal Detention–Does Discovery of a Parole or Probation Search Condition Remove Taint Under the Attenuation Doctrine

(1) Is the discovery of a parole or probation search condition an intervening circumstance that removes the taint of an illegal detention under the attenuation doctrine? (2) What constitutes purposeful and flagrant police misconduct under the attenuation doctrine analysis? Held: As a general rule, evidence seized as a result of an unlawful search or seizure is inadmissible against the defendant…

Case: People v. McWilliams (2023) __ Cal.5th __
Case Number: S268320/H045525
Updated: February 23, 2023
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Procedures When Appointed Counsel Determines that an Appeal from an Order Denying Postconviction Relief Lacks Arguable Merit

(1) What procedures must appointed counsel and the Courts of Appeal follow when counsel determines that an appeal from an order denying postconviction relief lacks arguable merit? (2) Are defendants entitled to notice of these procedures? Held: In People v. Wende (1979) 25 Cal.3d 436 [158 Cal. Rptr. 839, 600 P.2d 1071] (Wende), we held the Courts of Appeal must…

Case: People v. Delgadillo (2022) 14 Cal.5th 216
Case Number: S266305
Updated: February 15, 2023
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Demonstrating Prejudice for PC 1473.7 Motion

Did the Court of Appeal err in ruling that defendant failed to demonstrate prejudice within the meaning of Penal Code section 1473.7 from trial counsel's failure to properly advise him of the immigration consequences of his plea? On 9/20/2021, the court limited the issue to be argued and briefed to the following: Did the Court of Appeal err in ruling…

Case: People v. Espinoza (2023) 14 Cal.5th 311
Case Number: S269647/F079209
Updated: January 26, 2023
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Whether Appeal of Jurisdictional Finding is Moot When Jurisdiction Had Been Terminated in the Interim, Even though Parents Might Be Registered on the Child Abuse Central Index

(1) Is an appeal of a juvenile court's jurisdictional finding moot when a parent asserts that he or she has been or will be stigmatized by the finding? (2) Is an appeal of a juvenile court's jurisdictional finding moot when a parent asserts that he or she may be barred from challenging a current or future placement on the Child…

Case: In re D.P. (2023) 14 Cal.5th 266
Case Number: S267429
Updated: January 19, 2023
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Whether Defendant Was Detained When Officer Shone a Spotlight on Defendant’s Parked Car and Ordered Passenger to Stay Near Car

Was defendant unlawfully detained when the arresting officer used his spotlight to illuminate defendant's parked car and then directed a passenger who exited the car to remain outside and stay on the sidewalk near the car? Held: A sheriff's deputy patrolling after dark saw three people sitting in a legally parked car in a residential neighborhood, smoking something. He pulled…

Case: People v. Tacardon (2022) 14 Cal.5th 235
Case Number: S264219
Updated: December 29, 2022
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Court Delegating Authority to Allow Probation Department to Offer Minor Community Service Hours to Work Off Alleged Probation Violations

Did the trial court improperly delegate its authority to the probation department and violate the minor's due process rights by permitting the probation department to offer the minor community service hours "to work off any alleged probation violations"? Held: After determining that D.N., a minor, was within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court because of his violation of criminal laws…

Case: In re D.N. (2022) 14 Cal.5th 202
Case Number: S268437/F080624
Updated: December 12, 2022
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California Victim Compensation Board Claims and Actual Innocence Finding by Federal Court

(1) Does a federal court's "gateway" finding of actual innocence (Schlup v. Delo (1995) 513 U.S. 298) satisfy the "factually innocent" standard of Penal Code section 1485.55, subdivision (a), for entitlement to compensation by a person wrongfully convicted and incarcerated? (2) Are the factual findings and credibility determinations made in a federal court's Schlup order binding on state courts under Penal Code section…

Case: Souliotes v. California Victim Compensation Bd.
Case Number: S267930/B295163
Updated: December 8, 2022
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Drug Overdose as Implicit Waiver of Right to be Present at Trial / No Continuance for Defendant to Testify

(1) Did the trial court err in ruling that defendant's overdose on heroin during his jury trial was an implicit waiver of his right to be present and made him voluntarily absent within the meaning of Penal Code section 1043, subdivision (b)(2)? (2) Did the trial court err in denying the defense motion for a one-day continuance to permit defendant…

Case: People v. Ramirez (2022) 14 Cal.5th 176
Case Number: S262010/F076126
Updated: December 5, 2022
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Sufficiency of the Evidence–Conspiracy to Commit Murder for the Benefit of a Gang

Does sufficient evidence support Hoskins's Count 1 conviction for conspiracy to commit murder? [Editor's Note: Count 1 in this case alleged that multiple defendants conspired to commit murder (Pen. Code, §§ 182, subd. (a), 187) for the benefit of a criminal street gang (§ 186.22, subd. (b)(1)) between January 1, 2012, and April 23, 2014. On appeal, it was undisputed that the…

Case: People v. Ware (2022) 14 Cal.5th 151
Case Number: S263923
Updated: December 1, 2022
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Three Strikes Sentencing When There Are Multiple Current Violent or Serious Felony Convictions

Does the Three Strikes law (Pen. Code, §§ 667, subd. (c)(6) & (7), 1170.12, subd. (a)(6) & (7)) require consecutive terms on multiple current violent or serious felony convictions, regardless of whether the offenses occurred on the same occasion or arose from the same set of operative facts? Held: "This case considers if and when a court may impose concurrent sentences…

Case: People v. Henderson (2022) 14 Cal.5th 34
Case Number: S265172
Updated: November 17, 2022
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Assembly Bill No. 333 and Bifurcation of Gang Allegations at Trial

People v. Tran, S165998, an automatic appeal, included an issue involving the retroactivity of the provision in Assembly Bill No. 333 (Stats. 2021, ch. 699) permitting the bifurcation of gang allegations at trial (Pen. Code, § 1109). Held: "The question of whether section 1109 applies retroactively is the subject of a split of authority among the Courts of Appeal. (See e.g., People v.…

Case: People v. Tran (2022) 13 Cal.5th 1169
Case Number: S165998
Updated: September 21, 2022
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Whether Assault by Means of Force Likely to Produce Great Bodily Injury a Lesser Included Offense of Assault with a Deadly Weapon

In this case in which briefing was previously deferred pending decision in People v. Aledamat (2019) 8 Cal.5th 1, the court ordered the parties to brief the following question on 11/20/2019: (1) Is assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury a lesser included offense of assault with a deadly weapon? (See People v. Aledamat (2019) 7 Cal.5th 1, 16,…

Case: People v. Aguayo (2022) 13 Cal.5th 974
Case Number: S254554
Updated: August 29, 2022
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Sufficiency Evidence Gang Enhancements

Was the evidence sufficient to support the criminal street gang enhancements imposed under Penal Code section 186.22, subdivision (b)? On 4/21/2021, the court ordered the issues to be briefed and argued in this case limited to the following: When a member of a criminal street gang acts alone in committing a felony, what evidence will suffice to establish the felony…

Case: People v. Renteria (2022) 13 Cal.5th 951
Case Number: S266854
Updated: August 25, 2022
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Does Gallardo (Limiting Judicial Fact-Finding for Prior Convictions) Apply Retroactively

Do the limitations of People v. Gallardo (2017) 4 Cal.5th 120 on judicial fact-finding concerning the basis for a prior conviction apply retroactively to final judgments? (Compare In re Milton (2019) 42 Cal.App.5th 977 with In re Brown (Feb. 25, 2020, E071401) 45 Cal.App.5th 699.) A request for an order directing depublication of the opinion was denied. Held: In 1987, petitioner William Milton was convicted of…

Case: In re Milton (2022) 13 Cal.5th 893
Case Number: S259954/B297354
Updated: August 22, 2022
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Mistake of Fact Instructional Error and Prejudice Standard

Did the Court of Appeal err in holding an instructional error on the defense of mistake of fact harmless? In the circumstances of this case, which standard of prejudice applies to an error in instructing on the defense of mistake of fact: that of People v. Watson (1956) 46 Cal.2d 818 or that of Chapman v. California (1967) 386 U.S. 18? Held: Early one…

Case: People v. Hendrix (2022) 13 Cal.5th 933
Case Number: S265668
Updated: August 22, 2022
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SB 1437–Felony-Murder Special Circumstance Finding Precluding Eligibility for Relief

Does a felony-murder special circumstance finding (Pen. Code, § 190.2, subd. (a)(17)) made before People v. Banks (2015) 61 Cal.4th 788 and People v. Clark (2016) 63 Cal.4th 522 preclude a defendant from making a prima facie showing of eligibility for relief under Penal Code section 1170.95? Held: A pre-Banks/Clark felony-murder special-circumstance finding does not preclude a defendant from establishing a prima facie case for…

Case: People v. Strong (2022) 13 Cal.5th 698
Case Number: S266606
Updated: August 8, 2022
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Trial Court Permission to Consolidate Pleadings

When a defendant is held to answer following separate preliminary hearings on charges brought in separate complaints, can the People file a unitary information covering the charges in both those cases or must they obtain the trial court's permission to consolidate the pleadings? (See Pen. Code, §§ 949, 954.) Held: Penal Code1 section 954 provides in relevant part: “[1] An…

Case: People v. Henson (2022) 13 Cal.5th 574
Case Number: S252702
Updated: August 1, 2022
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Conservatorship–Right Not to Testify

Does equal protection require that persons subject to a conservatorship under the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (Welf. & Inst. Code, § 5350) have the same right to invoke the statutory privilege not to testify as persons subject to involuntary commitments under Penal Code section 1026.5 after a finding of not guilty by reason of insanity? Held: "The Lanterman-Petris-Short (LPS) Act (LPS Act;…

Case: Conservatorship of Eric B. (2022) 12 Cal.5th 1085
Case Number: S261812
Updated: April 28, 2022
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