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The State Supreme Court posted an order on the docket of In re Humphrey (2018) 19 Cal.App.5th 1006, pending as # S247278, making Part III of the Court of Appeal decision in the case legal precedent. That part of the  appellate opinion holds that due process requires consideration of the defendant’s financial circumstances in setting conditions of release. And it holds that bail schedules cannot be used by the court in setting conditions for release of a defendant when pretrial detention is not required.

Background of the case in San Francisco Superior Court

Humphrey, a retired shipyard laborer, then 63 years of age and a lifelong resident of San Francisco was arrested and charged with first degree robbery (Pen. Code, § 211),3 first degree residential burglary (§ 459), inflicting injury (but not great bodily injury) on an elder and dependent adult (§ 368, subd. (c)), and theft from an elder or dependent adult, charged as a misdemeanor. (§ 368, subd. (d).)

The Berkeley City Council approved a measure that would create a new Department of Transportation and remove police from traffic stops. The use of unarmed public works officials to enforce traffic laws is aimed at reducing racial profiling and  law enforcement contacts that can escalate into violence, especially for Black drivers.

The Berkeley City Council measure removing  traffic from law enforcement is the first of its kind in the U.S. and is likely to be emulated as other cities adopt public safety reforms following the death of George Floyd in May.

Studies have shown Black motorists are much more likely to be stopped by police than whites for minor traffic infractions that turn fatal. For example,  Philando Castile, 32, was shot and killed after he was pulled over for a busted tail light during a traffic stop in 2016 in Minnesota. Sandra Bland, 28, died in a jail cell three days after being stopped for failing to signal when changing lanes in Texas in 2015.

The People, Plaintiff and Appellant, v. Lula Sophia Gong Cotsirilos et al., Defendants and Respondents., 2020 WL 3396240 (Cal.App. 4 Dist.) (Cal.App. 4 Dist., 2020)

Summary:

Two defendants cited for underage alcohol infractions filed a motion  to suppress the evidence. The prosecution did not file an opposition or appear at the suppression hearing but did subpoena the two investigating officers. The superior court granted the suppression motions based solely on the People’s failure to respond or appear. The appellate division of the superior court agreed, concluding that while no written opposition was required, the People’s failure to respond or appear compelled suppression.

People v. Hughes, 2020 WL 3071948 (Cal.App. 4 Dist., E069445; Filed 06/10/2020)

Facts:

After drinking, Michael Dwayne Hughes hit a PT Cruiser whose driver failed to yield to him, killing the driver and her two children, who were passengers. Hughes, who had a prior conviction for driving under the influence, was charged with three counts of murder, on the theory he knew the risk of driving while intoxicated but drove anyway.

People v. Lopez, 2020 WL 1163518; C080065 (Cal.App. 3 Dist., 2020)

Summary:

Sharon Darlene Lopez appealed the trial court’s denial of her motion to suppress evidence obtained from a warrantless blood draw after her arrest for driving under the influence of a controlled substance. The officer instructed Lopez that she was required to submit to a blood draw under the state’s implied consent law, but he did not provide her with the law’s admonitions regarding the consequences should she refuse the test. Lopez did not object or resist, and the draw was performed without a warrant. The trial court concluded defendant consented to the test. The Court of Appeal concluded that substantial evidence supports the court’s ruling, and affirmed the judgment.

The People, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. Daniel Cervantes, Defendant and Appellant.(Court of Appeal, Second District, Division 6); No. B298077; Filed 1/30/2020; 2020 WL 486867

Re-sentencing under Penal Code section 1170.95

Penal Code section 1170.95, subdivision (a) provides that , a person convicted of first degree or second degree murder  under the “felony murder or murder under a natural and probable consequences theory may file a petition with the court that sentenced the petitioner to have petitioner’s murder conviction vacated and to be resentenced on any remaining counts.”

People v. Taylor (Cal. Ct. App., Jan. 6, 2020, No. B293881) 2020 WL 5698

 Summary:  A jury convicted  Isaac Taylor of kidnapping to commit robbery as well as of the robbery itself.  Taylor used a gun to back David Ho four steps towards a dark alley, where Taylor took Ho’s wallet. Based on Ho’s four steps backwards, the jury convicted Taylor of kidnapping. The Court of Appeal reversed the kidnapping conviction.

Penal code section 209- kidnapping to commit robbery-aggravated kidnapping

People v. Lewis, 2020 WL 57841 (Cal.App. 2 Dist.) (Cal.App. 2 Dist., 2020)

 Appeal of trial court denial of petition for re-sentencing without appointment of counsel

 Defendant Vincent E. Lewis was convicted of first degree premeditated murder in 2012, his conviction was  affirmed on appeal in 2014. In January 2019, defendant filed a petition for resentencing under Penal Code 2 section 1170.95 and requested the appointment of counsel. The trial court, relying on the court of Appeal  decision in determined that defendant was ineligible for relief and denied the petition without appointing counsel or holding a hearing. Defendant appealed.

People v. Arredondo, 2019 WL 6834808 Supreme Court of California, S244166, December 16, 2019

John Arredondo was convicted of lewd acts on child under age 14, lewd act on child under age 16, oral copulation with a child under age 14, and sexual penetration with child under age 14 and was sentenced to 33 years plus 275 years to life in state prison.

Supreme Court grants review

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