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Name: People v. Sweeney
Case #: E064273
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 10/18/2016

A felony conviction is eligible for reduction to a misdemeanor under Proposition 47 even if there is a gang enhancement (Pen. Code, § 186.22, subd. (b)) attached to it. Sweeney filed a Proposition 47 petition to reduce his felony convictions for receiving stolen property to misdemeanors. The prosecutor argued the convictions were ineligible for reduction because there was a gang enhancement attached to each one. The trial court denied the petition. Sweeney appealed. Held: Reversed and remanded. Proposition 47 reduced a number of nonviolent drug and theft offenses from felonies to misdemeanors and created mechanisms for a person who already…

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Name: People v. Salvador
Case #: A142488
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 02/04/2016

Penal Code section 186.22, subdivision (b)(1)(C) 10-year gang enhancement cannot be imposed when the defendant is convicted of an offense that carries a life term under the One Strike law (Pen. Code, § 667.61). Salvador was convicted of a number of gang-related offenses stemming from a sexual assault. The trial court imposed a sentence that included two indeterminate terms of 15 years to life under section 667.61, subdivision (b) and eight indeterminate terms of 25 years to life under section 667.61, subdivision (a). As to each of these terms, the court also imposed a separate consecutive 10-year term for…

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Name: People v. Ewing
Case #: C072783
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 01/27/2016

Sufficient evidence established a "criminal street gang" where the perpetrators of the instant offense and predicate offenses were all members of the same gang and defendant was either a member or associate of that gang. Ewing and three others were involved in a drug rip-off robbery, during which a victim was shot but survived. He was convicted of numerous offenses and a number of enhancements, including an allegation that he shot at a vehicle for the benefit of a gang (Pen. Code, § 186.22, subd. (b)(4)), were found true. On appeal Ewing challenged the sufficiency of the evidence of the…

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Name: People v. Prunty
Case #: S210234
Court: CA Supreme Court
District CalSup
Opinion Date: 08/27/2015

When the prosecution seeks to prove that a criminal street gang exists based on the conduct of one or more gang subsets, it must introduce evidence showing an organizational or associational connection that unites the gang subsets. Prunty, a Detroit Boulevard Norteño, and Chacon, a Varrio Franklin Boulevard Norteño, shot and injured Manzo, a Sureno, outside a fast food restaurant after exchanging gang-related insults. A young boy was also injured by the gunfire. At trial, the prosecutor sought to prove that Prunty committed the crimes for the benefit of a "criminal street gang" (Pen. Code, § 186.22, subd. (b)(1)). To…

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Name: People v. White
Case #: B250069
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 10/03/2014

There was sufficient evidence to support defendant's conviction for shooting at an inhabited dwelling under an aider and abetter theory even though he did not share the direct perpetrator's particular intent to shoot at the building. White and Gales, Tree Top Piru gang members, encountered rival gang members Diaz and Ayah in contested territory. Gales handed White a gun and told White to "Go get them." Instead of firing at Diaz or Ayah, White, who did not want to injure either, fired three shots at an apartment behind Diaz. A jury convicted Gales of multiple offenses with gang enhancements, including…

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Name: People v. Chaides
Case #: E059517
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 09/17/2014

Trial court erred when it granted demurrer to prior strike allegation because complaint indicated that defendant's offense of unlawfully carrying a concealed firearm constituted a felony violation of Penal Code section 186.22, subdivision (a). A complaint filed against Chaides alleged that he had a prior felony conviction under Penal Code section 12025, subdivision (b)(3), and that this prior conviction constituted a strike for purposes of the Three Strikes law. Section 12025, subdivision (b)(3) elevates the offense of carrying a concealed firearm, which would otherwise be a misdemeanor, to a felony when a defendant has also committed a violation of…

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Name: People v. Venegas
Case #: B250678
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 09/11/2014
Subsequent History: Review granted 12/10/2014: S221923

Penal Code section 186.22, subdivision (g) does not restrict a trial court's discretion under section 1385, subdivision (a), to strike a section 186.22, subdivision (b)(4) gang allegation. Following a jury trial, Venegas was convicted of multiple offenses, including shooting at an inhabited dwelling (Pen. Code, § 246); an allegation that he did so for the benefit of a gang (Pen. Code, § 186.22, subd. (b)(4)(B)) was found true. Prior to trial, Venegas sought to enter an open plea to this count, in the "hope" that the trial court would strike the section 186.22, subdivision (b)(4)(B) allegation, which requires the court…

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Name: People v. Anaya et al.
Case #: F063835
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Opinion Date: 10/07/2013

Trial court erred by imposing life terms pursuant to Penal Code section 186.22, subdivision (b)(4)(C) because this subdivision does not apply to violations of Penal Code sections 518 or 136.1, subdivision (b)(1) without additional factual findings by a jury. Appellants were convicted of various criminal charges and enhancements based on their forceful attempts to collect a criminal street gang debt, including convictions for extortion (Pen. Code, § 518; count 1) and dissuading a witness (Pen. Code § 136.1, subd. (b)(1); count 5). The jury found that the appellants committed the crimes for the benefit of a street gang (Pen. Code,…

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Name: People v. Prunty
Case #: C071065
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 03/26/2013
Subsequent History: Review granted 6/26/13: S210234

There was sufficient evidence to support the gang enhancement despite appellant's claim that he was a member of a small subset of Nortenos. Prunty, an admitted Norteno gang member, fired six shots at a rival gang member, striking and injuring him and another person. A jury found him guilty of attempted voluntary manslaughter as a lesser included offense of attempted murder, assault with a firearm, and found true various enhancements including a street gang enhancement under section 186.22. On appeal, Prunty contended that there was insufficient evidence that Nortenos qualify as a criminal street gang for purposes of…

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Name: People v. Mejia
Case #: B229382
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 8
Opinion Date: 11/30/2012

There was sufficient evidence that appellants were liable for the killing of their accomplice by a rival gang member under the theory of provocative act murder. At approximately 3:00 a.m., appellants, members of the 18th Street criminal street gang, went to the apartment of Pulido, a member of the rival criminal street gang, the Big Top Locos, intending to kill Pulido. One of the 18th Street gang members was Lorenzo. The gang members knocked on the door and asked for Pulido, who became suspicious and frightened. He retrieved a shotgun from under the bed in his bedroom and loaded it…

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