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Name: People v. Superior Court (Mitchell) (2023) 94 Cal.App.5th 595
Case #: B326653
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 6
Opinion Date: 08/16/2023

A superior court’s order reducing a felony “wobbler” to a misdemeanor is unauthorized under Penal Code section 17(b) when made after the preliminary hearing and before trial. The first count in a felony information charged defendant with a wobbler as a felony—resisting an officer in violation of Penal Code section 69(a). On the day that trial was to begin, the superior court reduced the felony wobbler to a misdemeanor over the People’s objection. The People petitioned for a writ of mandate directing the superior court to vacate its order. Held: Petition granted. Section 17(b) permits the trial court to reduce a…

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Name: People v. Orozco
Case #: S249495
Court: CA Supreme Court
District CalSup
Opinion Date: 03/26/2020

Opinion By: Justice Liu (joined by Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye and Justices Chin, Corrigan, Kruger, and Groban.). Justice Cuéllar filed an opinion concurring in the judgment.
Proposition 47's revision to Penal Code section 496, making the offense of receiving stolen property a misdemeanor when the value of the property is $950 or less, does not extend to convictions for receiving a stolen vehicle (Pen. Code, § 496d). In 2014, Orozco pleaded guilty to one count of unlawfully driving a vehicle (Veh. Code, § 10851, subd. (a)) and one count of receiving a stolen vehicle (Pen. Code, §…

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Name: People v. Bonilla
Case #: C082144
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 11/29/2018

Trial counsel was not ineffective for failing to defend against vandalism charges by asserting the victim's violation of a civil statute because a person may not commit a crime in response to the breach of a civil statute. The three defendants were convicted of felony vandalism. The case arose out of a confrontation between the defendants and a repossession agent who was in the process of taking a car. On appeal, defendants raised a number of issues, primarily based on ineffective assistance of trial counsel (IAC). Held: Affirmed. A defendant asserting IAC must show that counsel's representation fell below an…

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Name: People v. Lee
Case #: F072173
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Opinion Date: 10/31/2017

A prior theft allegation under Penal Code section 666.5, does not by itself transform a wobbler offense into a straight felony. A jury convicted Lee of driving or taking a vehicle (Veh. Code, § 10851, subd. (a)), receiving stolen property (Pen. Code, § 496d, subd. (a)), and two counts of carrying a dirk or dagger (Pen. Code, § 21310). Lee admitted two theft-related priors (Pen. Code, § 666.5, subd. (a)), as well as four strike priors. The trial court denied Lee's motion to reduce the offenses to misdemeanors (Pen. Code, § 17, subd. (b)), finding the recidivist theft allegation (Pen.…

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Name: People v. Warmington
Case #: C082556
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 10/17/2017

Embezzlement of property not exceeding $950 in value is considered "theft" under Penal Code section 490.2 and is eligible for Proposition 47 relief. While employed as a clerk at Walmart in 2002, Warmington stole a television, returned it for a gift card, and used the card to purchase other items. The value of these items was $851. He pleaded no contest to felony embezzlement (Pen. Code, § 503) and was placed on probation. In 2016, Warmington filed a Proposition 47 petition to redesignate his felony offense to a misdemeanor. The trial court denied the petition on the ground that embezzlement…

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Name: People v. Reyes
Case #: B276919
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 10/06/2016

On bail enhancement (Pen. Code, § 12022.1) must be stricken where the offense the defendant was on bail for when he committed the new offense had been wobbled to a misdemeanor under section 17, subdivision (b) prior to a no contest plea. Reyes received two on bail enhancements because he committed new offenses while on bail facing felony second degree burglary charges. He appealed and filed a habeas petition, arguing that it was improper to impose the enhancements because the offense he was on bail for was ultimately wobbled to a misdemeanor under section 17, subdivision (b) before he pleaded…

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Name: People v. Tran
Case #: C072368
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 12/01/2015

Trial court may properly consider the facts set forth in a probation report that the defendant had an opportunity to challenge when considering whether to reduce a felony to a misdemeanor under Penal Code section 17, subdivision (b). Tran fired shots at Dao's home and was charged with shooting at an inhabited dwelling. He pleaded no contest to assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury and to being a misdemeanant in possession of a firearm. The stated factual basis for the plea did not include information about the shooting, but a postplea, presentence probation report did. The trial…

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Name: People v. Superior Court (Jalalipour)
Case #: G049679
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 01/07/2015

Trial court erred by reducing wobbler offense to misdemeanor after preliminary hearing but before plea and sentencing. Jalalipour was charged with multiple crimes, including felony tax evasion, for underreporting sales tax collected from his restaurants. After the preliminary hearing, Jalalipour moved to reduce the charged crimes to misdemeanors pursuant to Penal Code section 17, subdivision (b). At a hearing on his motion, Jalalipour stated that his intent was to plead guilty to the reduced charge. The court granted the motion over the prosecutor's objection. Jalalipour entered guilty pleas to the misdemeanor counts and received probation. The prosecutor petitioned for…

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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. Willis
Case #: B243507
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 12/16/2013

Imposition of summary probation for a "wobbler" offense effectively converts the offense to a misdemeanor because summary probation is not authorized in felony cases. Appellant pled guilty to a violation of Health and Safety Code section 11377, subdivision (a), a "wobbler" offense, and was placed on deferred entry of judgment (DEJ). Following his failure to provide proof of enrollment in a program, the court terminated DEJ and ordered 36 months summary probation. A few months later, appellant violated his probation. Following a hearing, the court modified summary probation to formal probation for 36 months from the date of the probation…

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