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Name: People v. Casper
Case #: D038550
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 02/03/2003
Subsequent History: Mod. & rehrg. den. 3/3/03; Rev. granted 4/23/03

A court is not required to impose consecutive sentences for offenses that fall outside of the Three Strikes’ sentencing scheme. Appellant burglarized, robbed and attempted to rob various victims. At sentencing, the trial court dismissed the strike allegation on all but one of the current convictions. It also expressed its opinion that appellant’s sentence should give him the opportunity to be released from prison before he died. However, the court concluded that because a strike allegation remained in effect on one current conviction, it was required to impose consecutive terms for all current convictions for crimes…

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Name: People v. Wallace
Case #: A092782
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 01/10/2003
Subsequent History: Rev. granted 3/26/03: S113321

Appellant was convicted of being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm, and the trial court found two prior "strikes" to be true. Appellant moved to strike one of the prior strikes, based on the fact that the charge had originally been dismissed pursuant to a Penal Code section 995 motion, that appellant had pled no contest to the charge, and that there had not been a factual basis for the plea. The trial court struck the strike, and the prosecutor appealed. Here the appellate court reversed the order striking the strike. Once appellant entered the…

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Name: People v. Snow
Case #: D035655
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 01/14/2003
Subsequent History: Rehg. denied 2/5/03, no change in judgment. Rev. denied 4/16/03.

Appellant was sentenced to 85 years to life, which consisted of a 25-year-to-life term under the One Strike law, tripled under the Three Strikes law, plus a ten year consecutive term for two prior serious felony convictions. On appeal, he challenged the prior conviction under section 288a, subdivision (c)(1) as a conviction which did not qualify as a serious or violent felony. He also argued that the One Strike Law and the Three Strikes Law are mutually exclusive rather than cumulative sentencing schemes. The appellate court rejected the challenge to the prior, finding that the California Supreme…

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Name: People v. Bowden
Case #: B151167
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 09/24/2002
Subsequent History: Rev. denied 12/11/03.

Appellant was found guilty of burglary and robbery, and a prior "strike" which was based on a juvenile adjudication for robbery. Here, the appellate court upheld the true finding on the "strike." The prosecution was not required to prove that the robbery was committed while armed with a dangerous or deadly weapon because the present offenses were committed after the passage of Proposition 21, which deleted that requirement in former Welfare and Institutions Code section 707(b). Further, the fact that appellant did not have a jury trial on the prior juvenile adjudication did not prevent its…

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Name: People v. Romero
Case #: E030010
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 07/11/2002
Subsequent History: Rev. denied 10/2/02.

The Fourth DCA published this opinion to underscore its disagreement with the Ninth Circuit’s decision in Brown v. Mayle (2002) 283 F. 3d 1019 that 25 year to life sentences under the "Three Strikes" law for felony petty theft constitute cruel and unusual punishment. In this opinion, the court rejected appellant’s argument that his three-strike sentence for stealing a magazine constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. Given appellant’s criminal history, failure to comply with parole, and "due deference to the Legislature," appellant’s sentence did not raise an inference of gross…

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Name: People v. Ortega
Case #: A087932
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 10/31/2000
Subsequent History: Petition for review den. 2/14/01

Appellant was convicted of attempted voluntary manslaughter and assault with a firearm for the same shooting. The trial court found that both convictions arose from a single act and stayed sentence on the assault with a firearm conviction pursuant to Penal Code section 654, but refused to strike the conviction, leaving appellant with two prior "strikes" on his record. Although the Court of Appeal found appellant might be entitled to have the assault stricken at a future dated pursuant to section 1385, it also held that appellant failed to show that the trial court abused its discretion in…

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Name: People v. Acosta
Case #: S089120
Court: CA Supreme Court
District CalSup
Opinion Date: 08/15/2002
Subsequent History: Modified 9/11/02. Mod. does not affect judgment.

The tripling provisions of the Three Strikes Law must apply to the calculation of the minimum parole eligibility period under the One Strike Law (Pen. Code, sec. 667.61), even if the same prior conviction triggers the application of both sentencing…

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Name: People v. Lawrence
Case #: S070271
Court: CA Supreme Court
District CalSup
Opinion Date: 08/28/2000
Subsequent History: Modification of opinion, 24 Cal.4th 316b; rehearing denied 10/3/00

Distinguishing People v. Deloza (1998) 18 Cal.4th 585 and People v. Hendrix (1997)16 Cal.4th 508, the California Supreme Court held that trial court correctly concluded that consecutive sentences here were mandatory under Penal Code section 667, subdivision (c)(6). First, the offenses here were not committed on the same occasion as they involved separate locations and separate groups of victims with no connection. Appellant fled from a market from which he had taken a bottle of brandy. He was not pursued by store personnel. During his flight, he entered the back yard of a residence, where he…

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Name: People v. Edwards
Case #: G026878
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 03/27/2002
Subsequent History: Rev. denied 6/19/02.

The Three Strikes Law does not deny equal protection in situations in which two previous strike convictions are followed by another felony conviction. A person with such a record has demonstrated an imperviousness to…

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Name: U.S. v. Sanchez-Cervantes
Case #: 98-35897
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 03/01/2002
Subsequent History: Cert. den. 10/7/02

In this Oregon federal-drug violations case, appellant's trial for conspiracy to distribute cocaine occurred prior to the U.S. Supreme Court's announcement in Apprendi v. New Jersey (2000) 530 U.S. 466, that "[o]ther than the fact of a prior conviction, any fact that increases the penalty for a crime beyond the prescribed statutory maximum must be submitted to a jury, and proved beyond a reasonable doubt." At the time of trial, all Circuits allowed a judge to determine the drug quantity for which the defendant was responsible for by a preponderance of evidence. The Court of Appeals here held…

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