caclr_header_template1 California Criminal Law Reporter

Recent Defense Victories

The suppression issue that was twice denied in section 1538.5 motions was properly raised in a 995 motion. (554) (582)
Defendant was twice unsuccessful in having the evidence suppressed on motions brought under Penal Code section 1538, first at the preliminary hearing and then after his arraignment on the information. He raised the issue again in a motion to set aside the information pursuant to section 995, which was heard by a different superior court judge who granted the motion and ordered the evidence suppressed. Contrary to the prosecution’s claim, the suppression issue was properly raised again in the 995 motion.
People v. Kidd ____ Cal.App.5th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2019 D.A.R. 5032 (4th Dist. 2019) June 10, 2019 (E070996)
Defendant was detained when the officer pulled in behind him, and the detention was unreasonable since he was parked and was not required to have his headlights illuminated. (350) (358)
Defendant was detained when the officer made a u-turn to pull in behind him and trained spotlights on his car. It did not matter that the officer did not block him in or activate the colored emergency lights. Moreover, the detention was not justified as the officer noticed that defendant’s fog lights, but not his normal headlights were illuminated. It is unlawful to drive at night using only fog lights but defendant was not driving when the officer approached - he was parked.
People v. Kidd ____ Cal.App.5th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2019 D.A.R. 5032 (4th Dist. 2019) June 10, 2019 (E070996)
Reduction of felony theft conviction to a misdemeanor under Prop 47 also required a dismissal of the street terrorism offense that is based on “felonious” criminal conduct. (105a)
Defendant stole a bicycle and was later convicted of both felony grand theft and street terrorism under Penal Code section 186.22, subd.(a). The felony theft conviction was later reduced to a misdemeanor under Prop 47. That reduction also required dismissal of the street terrorism offense, which requires a showing of “felonious” criminal conduct.
People v. Valenzuela ____ Cal.5th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2019 D.A.R. 4788 (2019) June 03, 2019 (S239122)
Defendant, who failed a motion under section 1473.7 to vacate his plea for lack of advice on immigration consequences was entitled to a hearing and the appointment of counsel. (517)
In 2018, while facing deportation proceedings, defendant filed a motion to vacate his earlier guilty plea pursuant to Penal Code section 1473.7 because neither counsel nor the trial court adequately advised him of the immigration consequences of the plea. The trial court erred by summarily denying the motion because defendant was entitled to a hearing. Moreover, defendant who had adequately set forth factual allegations stating a prima facie case for entitlement to relief was entitled to the appointment of counsel.
People v. Fryhaat ____ Cal.App.5th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2019 D.A.R. 4730 (4th Dist. 2019) May 31, 2019 (E070847)
Prosecutor erred by arguing that gang members should only be convicted of first degree murder. (634)
The prosecutor misstated the law by arguing that gang members deserve to be convicted of first, rather than second degree murder. However, the defense forfeited the issue on appeal by failing to object to the improper argument.
People v. Rivera ____ Cal.5th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2019 D.A.R. 4405 (2019) May 23, 2019 (S153881)
The driver’s statement that the gun belonged to him should have been admitted under the declaration against interest hearsay exception. (722)
Defendant was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm. The trial court prejudicially erred by refusing to admit evidence that the driver of the car told police the gun belonged to him. The statement was admissible under Evidence Code section 1230 as a declaration against interest and was not unreliable simply becuase the declarant may have been attempting to protect defendant.
People v. Reyes ____ Cal.App.5th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2019 D.A.R. 4317 (1st Dist. 2019) May 17, 2019 (A152557)