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Name: People v. Lewis (2024) 101 Cal.App.5th 401
Case #: E082085
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 01/03/2024
Subsequent History: Ordered published 4/10/2024

Trial court abused its discretion in denying compassionate release under Penal Code section 1172.2 where the finding that defendant posed an unreasonable risk of danger to public safety was not supported by substantial evidence. Defendant was convicted of first degree murder committed in 2020. He was also associated with a street gang and had a significant criminal history. In 2023, the CDCR’s director of Health Care Services sent a letter to the superior court recommending compassionate release under section 1172.2. Defendant was diagnosed with ALS, which was rapidly progressing, and he had “a clear end of life trajectory.” Defendant had…

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Name: People v. Fredrickson (2023) 90 Cal.App.5th 984
Case #: A164803
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 04/24/2023

To trigger Penal Code section 1170, subdivision (b)(6)(B)’s presumption in favor of a lower term sentence for defendants under 26, there must be an initial showing that defendant’s youth was a contributing factor in the commission of the underlying offense. Defendant was sentenced to the middle term for a felony offense committed when she was 23. She appealed, arguing that given her age, the trial court abused its discretion in failing to treat the lower term as the presumptive sentence under section 1170(b)(6)(B). Held: Affirmed. When evaluating a trial court’s failure to expressly apply a sentencing presumption, the record must affirmatively…

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Name: People v. El
Case #: C091339
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 06/01/2021

When defendant declined offer of probation, the trial court was not required to impose the maximum term of punishment and had discretion to impose a lesser term. Following defendant's conviction for misdemeanor driving on a suspended license (Veh. Code, § 14601.1, subd. (a)), the trial court indicated it would place him on three years' informal probation. When defendant did not consent to probation, the trial court offered to reduce the probationary term to one year, advising defendant that if he did not accept probation the court was required to impose the maximum sentence of six months in jail.…

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Name: People v. Avignone
Case #: D070012
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 10/13/2017

Trial court lacks discretion to strike aggravated white collar crime enhancement (Pen. Code, § 186.11) in order to make defendants eligible to serve their sentences in county jail rather than state prison. Defendants, husband and wife, defrauded investors out of more than $700,000 in a real estate investment scheme. They entered guilty pleas to three counts of fraud (Corp. Code, §§ 25401, 25540, subd. (b)) and grand theft of property worth more than $950 (Pen. Code, § 487, subd. (a)). They admitted an aggravated white collar crime enhancement (Pen. Code, § 186.11, subd. (a)(2)), which applies to a pattern of…

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Name: People v. Sperling
Case #: B272275
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 6
Opinion Date: 06/08/2017

Appellant's claims that the trial court abused its discretion in sentencing him to the middle term on one count and imposing a consecutive sentence on another count were forfeited because he did not object at the time of sentencing. Sperling worked as a massage therapist and Amanda, a woman with developmental disabilities, was one of his regular clients. During Amanda's massages, Sperling would sexually assault her. Amanda eventually told a caregiver about the sexual assaults and Sperling was charged with numerous sex offenses. He pleaded guilty to sodomizing (count 1) and orally copulating (count 4) a victim who was…

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Name: People v. Antonio
Case #: D070590
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 04/18/2017

Trial court is not required to issue an order directing Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to make a defendant available to a foreign jurisdiction to serve a concurrent sentence. Antonio pleaded guilty to residential robbery (Pen. Code, §§ 211, 212.5) and admitted using a gun during the crime (Pen. Code, § 12022.5, subd. (a)), in exchange for a stipulated eight-year sentence. The agreed term was imposed but later recalled after the trial court learned that Antonio had previously been sentenced to serve a term in federal prison. The trial court did not alter the sentence. Antonio appealed the trial court's…

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Name: People v. Lua
Case #: E064038
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 04/14/2017

Statements made by trial court during sentencing hearing suggest it did not understand the breadth of its discretion to strike enhancements in furtherance of justice. A jury found Lua guilty of transportation for sale of a controlled substance (Health & Saf. Code, § 11379, subd. (a)) and simple possession of methamphetamine (Health & Saf. Code, § 11377, subd. (a)). Prior drug convictions and prior prison term enhancements were found true. Lua raised a number of issues on appeal, including that the trial court abused its discretion by failing to understand the scope of its sentencing discretion to strike one or…

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Name: People v. Leon
Case #: F065532
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Opinion Date: 01/13/2016

Defendant's un-Mirandized statement during jail classification interview that he was a gang member should have been suppressed under People v. Elizalde (2015) 61 Cal.4th 523. Leon, Centeno, Palofox, and Rivas, were charged with a number of offenses arising from a series of home invasion robberies that they allegedly committed for the benefit of a criminal street gang. Other alleged coconspirators were tried separately. To prove the gang allegations, the prosecution relied on statements that Centeno and his coconspirators gave during jail classification interviews admitting they were gang members. Centeno's counsel unsuccessfully objected to the admissibility of his jail classification interview…

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Name: People v. Shenouda
Case #: E061954
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 09/11/2015

Defendant's multiple uncharged sexual battery offenses supported the court's denial of probation and imposition of six-year midterm sentence for lewd acts upon a child. A jury convicted Shenouda of committing a lewd act upon a 13-year-old girl, Brianna, for grabbing and squeezing her buttocks. It acquitted him of a child molestation charge regarding Brianna, as well as sexual battery charges against Brianna's mother. The trial court denied probation and sentenced Shenouda to the statutory middle term of six years in state prison. Shenouda appealed the trial court's sentencing decisions, arguing that the court improperly relied on findings that…

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Name: People v. Namphonh
Case #: C075331
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 06/11/2015

When considering whether a defendant possesses the ability to pay for a sex offense victim's medical examination (Pen. Code, § 1203.1h, subd. (b)), the trial court is not limited to considering the defendant's present financial situation. Namphonh was convicted of continuous sexual abuse of a child under age 14, his half-sister. (Pen. Code, § 288.5, subd. (a).) Among other fines and fees, the court ordered him to reimburse the Stockton Police Department for the victim's medical examination in the amount of $1,850 pursuant to section 1203.1h, subdivision (b). Namphonh appealed arguing that the trial court abused its discretion in imposing…

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