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Name: Gardner v. Appellate Division (People)
Case #: E066330
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 11/12/2019

When the prosecution appeals from a suppression order in a misdemeanor case, the appellate division of the trial court cannot compel the public defender to represent the defendant in the proceedings and must appoint new counsel. Defendant Lopez's motion to suppress evidence in a misdemeanor case was granted and the trial court dismissed the case in the interests of justice. The People appealed. The appellate division declined to appoint counsel on the basis that California Rules of Court, rule 8.851 allows the appellate division to appoint counsel only for an indigent defendant who has been "convicted of a misdemeanor."…

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Name: Morris v. Superior Court of San Bernardino County
Case #: E066330
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 11/21/2017

Indigent respondent in misdemeanor appeal to the appellate division of the superior court is not entitled to appointed counsel. Petitioner Morris' office, the Public Defender of San Bernardino County, represented Lopez in a misdemeanor driving under the influence of alcohol case. The public defender filed a successful motion to suppress evidence and Lopez's case was dismissed. The prosecution appealed to the appellate division of the superior court. The public defender requested that counsel be appointed for Lopez. The court found Lopez ineligible for appointed counsel because California Rules of Court, rule 8.851(a)(1), only authorizes appointment of counsel for an…

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Name: Joshua P. v. Superior Court (Los Angeles County)
Case #: B253564
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 05/29/2014

Juvenile court abused its discretion by refusing to allow public defender (PD) to represent a qualified juvenile ward absent a showing that the accused was not indigent or a conflict existed. Joshua was the subject of juvenile delinquency proceedings based on a number of petitions filed over the course of three years. On the first two petitions filed in the Eastlake District, the public defender (PD) declared a conflict and private counsel was appointed. By the time a third petition was filed in Compton, the conflict no longer existed and the PD assumed representation. On the fourth and fifth petitions,…

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Name: Rhauburn v. Superior Court
Case #: E038620
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 06/09/2006

Disqualification for conflict of interest is not mandatory when a public defender’s office previously represented a witness for the prosecution. The trial court granted the prosecutor’s motion to disqualify the public defender’s office because the office had represented a witness in a prior criminal proceeding. The prosecutor argued there would be a conflict in using information about the offense against the witness for impeachment purposes. The Court of Appeal held it was error to apply a rigid rule of vicarious disqualification. The trial court should consider the totality of the circumstances in evaluating whether the individual…

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