IN THE SUPREME COURT OF CALIFORNIA
Plaintiff and Respondent,
CHARLES KEITH RICHARDSON,
Defendant and Appellant. )
Defendant Charles Keith Richardson was convicted by a jury of the murder
of April Holley (Pen. Code, § 187, subd. (a)), as to which the jury found true
felony-murder special circumstances for burglary, rape, sodomy and lewd and
lascivious acts on a child under the age of 14. (Pen. Code, § 190.2, subd. (a)(17).)
The jury also convicted defendant of residential burglary (Pen. Code, § 459),
forcible rape (Pen. Code, § 261, subd. (a)), lewd and lascivious acts on a child
under 14 (Pen. Code, § 288, subd. (b)), and sodomy (Pen. Code, § 286, subd. (c)),
all of these counts also involving the murder victim, April Holley.1 In a bifurcated
proceeding, the trial court found true additional allegations that defendant had
suffered prior convictions for a serious felony and a sex offense. (Pen. Code,
§§ 667, 667.6, subd. (b).) The jury returned a death verdict for the murder. The
trial court declined to modify the verdict (Pen. Code, § 190.4, subd. (e)), and
1 This was defendant’s second trial on these charges. His first trial ended in a
mistrial after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.
sentenced defendant to death.2 This appeal is automatic. (Cal. Const., art. VI,
§ 11, subd. (a); § 1239, subd. (b).)
We affirm the judgment but, for the reasons given below, remand the case
on the issue of restitution. (See People v. Vieira (2005) 35 Cal.4th 264, 305-306.)
A. Guilt Phase
1. Overview of Prosecution Guilt Phase Evidence
The prosecution’s theory in this case was that defendant and another man,
Steven Brown, raped and sodomized 11-year-old April Holley and then drowned
her in the bathtub of the trailer where she lived with her mother and older sister,
both of whom were absent the night of the murder.3 The evidence with which the
prosecution sought to convict defendant consisted of the following:
(1) defendant’s statement to a witness evincing awareness that the victim, whom
he knew, was alone on the night she was murdered; (2) defendant’s statements in
the immediate aftermath of the murder in which he either admitted killing the
victim or revealed details about the murder that had not been released to the
public; (3) defendant’s flight from the scene the day after the murder;
(4) defendant’s shifting stories in statements he made to the police culminating in
an admission — quickly retracted — that he had committed the murder; (5)
defendant’s statement to a fellow inmate that he had murdered Holley; (6)
2 Defendant was also sentenced to a total of 21 years on the remaining counts.
All further unspecified statutory references are to the Penal Code.
3 The prosecution believed a third person, then 15-year-old Bobby Joe Marshall,
Jr., was also present when the murder occurred; he was initially charged with the
murder but this charge was dismissed and he testified against defendant, although
denying he was present. Brown was also charged with the Holley murder, tried
separately and, upon conviction, also sentenced to death.
evidence that pubic hairs found at the crime scene were consistent with
defendant’s hair; and (7) Steven Brown’s subsequent attempt to commit a similar
crime against another victim.
The defense disputed each circumstance and statement that connected
defendant to the murder and argued that Brown alone committed the crime.
2. The Events of December 2-3, 1988
On Friday, December 2, 1988, Naomi Holley took her 11-year-old
daughter, April, to the home of a family friend, Melanie Lewis, to spend the
weekend with Lewis, Lewis’s boyfriend Richard Schnabel, and their children.
Naomi, April, and Naomi’s older daughter, Tammy, lived on West Addie Avenue
in a neighborhood just south of the city of Tulare called Matheny Tract. Tammy
Holley was in jail that weekend. After dropping April off, Naomi spent the night
at the home of friends. On Saturday afternoon, she decided to go to a party in
Porterville where she spent Saturday night; she did not tell April of her plans.
At Lewis’s residence, meanwhile, a $20 bill belonging to Tawny Schnabel,
Richard’s daughter, went missing and was found in April’s coat pocket. On
Saturday, December 3, after the theft was discovered, Lewis decided to take April
back to her mother and she and April went looking for Naomi. They went to the
Holley residence but no one was home. They also looked for Naomi at the house
of the friend with whom she had stayed the previous night, but did not find her.
Eventually, Lewis took April back to Lewis’s residence. She stopped on the way
to pick up her sister, who was supposed to baby-sit while Lewis, Richard
Schnabel, and Tawny Schnabel went Christmas shopping that night. After they
returned, April biked to the El Rancho Motel to visit her friend Barbara O’Hearn.
April arrived about 4:00 p.m. and stayed for an hour before returning to Lewis’s
From Lewis’s residence, April called her friend, 11-year-old Lisa
Matthews, and asked her to come to the Holley residence to spend the night. April
pretended that she was talking to her mother. Although Lisa’s grandmother
refused to allow her to spend the night with April, Lisa agreed to come. Lisa
started out for the Holley residence but turned back because it was too cold and
foggy. April, meanwhile, got a ride home from Richard Schnabel’s two teenage
daughters. April arrived at her house between 7:30 and 8:00 p.m. She went to the
front door, but could not get in so she went around to the back of the house.
Sometime after arriving at her home, April went to the house of a neighbor,
Lorraine Hughes, and knocked on her door. Hughes was home but did not answer
the door. She last saw April walking back in the direction of her own house.
Defendant also lived in Matheny Tract with the Marshall family in the
Marshalls’ trailer, not far from where April lived.4 Living in the Marshalls’
residence was Bob Marshall, Sr., his sister Linda Land, his sons, Michael and
Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr., and Michael Marshall’s girlfriend, Carol Brouchard.
Defendant was friendly with April’s older sister, Tammy, and had visited her at
the Holley residence. Naomi Holley testified that defendant had only been at her
house on two occasions and had never spent the night there. Her friends, Roger
Rummerfield and Renee Bailey, who were almost daily visitors to her house,
testified that defendant had only been in the house two or three times in November
and December, 1988. According to Naomi Holley, the last time defendant had
been at the Holley residence was on November 11, 1988. On that date, April and
another child, Kenny Maxwell, were drawing pictures and April drew two pictures
4 The distance between the Marshall residence and the Holley residence was 998
feet and could be covered in slightly more than four minutes on foot.
for defendant. Naomi Holley saw these pictures in her house on Saturday,
December 3, before she left for Porterville.
On that Saturday, defendant went back and forth between the Marshalls’
house and the nearby residence of Barney Hernandez. Defendant was friends with
Barney Hernandez’s nephew, Robert Hernandez, who lived with his uncle. On
one of these visits, around 7:30 p.m., defendant told Barney Hernandez that he had
seen April Holley out walking by herself. Defendant left after a few minutes, but
then returned about an hour later. He and Robert Hernandez took some tires
upstairs and then defendant ate. While he was eating, he told Barney Hernandez
that he had gone to the Holley residence and that April was there alone.
Defendant also asked Robert Hernandez to inject him with cocaine. As defendant
was leaving, Barney Hernandez told him to tell the Marshalls that April was by
herself. Defendant said “he was gonna check her out, and he was gonna take care
of it.” This conversation occurred about 9:10 p.m.
Between 9:00 and 9:30 p.m., several individuals who lived near the Holley
residence heard screams coming from the direction of that residence. One of
them, an 11-year-old boy named Jeremy Johnson who knew April, testified that it
was April who screamed. Two other witnesses testified the screams were those of
a young girl.
About 11:00 p.m., defendant appeared at the bus that served as Jimmy
Rousanvall’s residence. The bus was parked behind Rousanvall’s father’s house. 5
Rousanvall and his friend, 17-year-old Tammy Petrea, were watching television
when defendant arrived. Petrea was an admitted drug addict and prostitute.
5 The distance between Rousanvall’s bus and the Holley residence was 1,059 feet,
or about six minutes away on foot.
Defendant asked whether they wanted to use cocaine and Petrea said yes.
Rousanvall left and went into his father’s house, leaving defendant alone with
Petrea. After defendant and Petrea shared defendant’s cocaine, defendant made a
pass at her by putting his hand on her leg. Petrea, however, was frightened by
defendant, who looked “scary,” and she went outside. Defendant followed her and
asked her whether she had heard about April being killed. Petrea said she had not.
Defendant said that “they did it.” He told her that April “had something on him,
and he didn’t want her to get on the witness stand and testify against them . . .
[b]ecause then he’d go to jail or something like that.” He told her that he “ f—ked
her, and he drowned her . . . [i]n the bathtub.” He told her that he plugged the
bathtub with a rag and then drowned her. Defendant told Petrea that “if [she] told
anybody, that he’d take care of [her], or someone else will.” Petrea was frightened
by the threat. Then, as he was leaving, defendant also told her that “[p]ayback was
a motherf——ker.”6 Initially, Petrea did not tell police about defendant’s
statement because she was afraid.
Johnny Donald, who was walking in the vicinity of the Holley residence at
about 11:30 p.m., testified that he saw defendant and another man, who fit the
description of Steven Brown, out walking, though not together, in that area.
Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr., testified that, after an evening of driving around
and using drugs with his friend Joe Mills and Steven Brown, he and Mills returned
to the Marshall residence about 2:00 a.m. According to Marshall, defendant called
6 Rousansvall’s testimony from the first trial was read into evidence as part of
defendant’s case. He corroborated Petrea’s account of defendant’s arrival at the
bus and that he left when defendant and Petrea began to use drugs. He testified
further that when he returned, defendant was exiting the bus and Petrea was
behind him. Rousanvall was also confronted with a statement he made to police in
which he said defendant had arrived between 8:00 and 8:30 p.m.
him into the bedroom where he was sleeping and told Marshall that he had raped
and killed April Holley. Defendant then warned him not to say anything to
3. The Events of December 4
a. The Discovery of April Holley’s Body
On the morning of Sunday, December 4, Orville Bailey and Roger
Rummerfield — who lived with Bailey’s daughter at Bailey’s house — went to
the site of a burned down house that Bailey owned to tear it down. About noon,
Rummerfield, who was a friend of Naomi Holley’s, went to the Holley residence
to use the bathroom. Finding the front door padlocked, he went around to the back
door and entered the residence. After calling out and getting no response, he went
toward the bathroom. The bathroom door was cracked open. Rummerfield
entered and found April lying in the bathtub. April’s head was beneath the spout
at the drain end of the tub and she was in a fetal position, with her right hand
between her legs and her left hand behind her back. She wore only a long white
7 After defendant’s arrest, Marshall himself was arrested and charged with
various offenses in connection with April Holley’s murder. It was at that point he
told police that defendant had confessed to him. The charges were dismissed.
Nonetheless, even the prosecutor did not believe the account that Marshall gave at
defendant’s trial of his whereabouts and activities. Rather, the prosecutor told the
jury that he believed Marshall was present when defendant and Brown killed April
Holley, and that the significance of Marshall’s testimony was that he was the
connecting link between Brown — whom he said he had been with that evening
— and defendant. In support of its claim that Marshall was present at the murder,
the prosecution presented evidence that Marshall told a woman named Vicky
Lopez that, defendant, Marshall and a third person were at the crime scene when
“everything happened.” He told her all of them had “f—ked” the victim and that,
afterwards, he got rid of the shoes he wore to eliminate any shoe print matches.
Her face was partly covered with water. She had no pulse. Rummerfield
ran out of the house toward Bailey and yelled at him to call an ambulance because
“something’s happened to April.” Rummerfield also asked the Holleys’ next door
neighbors to call a paramedic and then went back to the Holley residence and
kicked in the front door to give the paramedics access.
Bailey, meanwhile, went to a number of houses to look for a phone. He
spoke to Mrs. Gore, who directed him to a blue house, but when he got there and
asked to use the phone, a young man told him it had been taken care of. Bailey
then went into the Holley residence. He saw April and was able to confirm
Rummerfield’s description of her.8
Paramedic Miguel Hernandez and his partner, Kathy Wojtasiewicz, were
the first emergency personnel on the scene, arriving about 12:45 in response to a
call about a possible drowning. At the Holley residence, Rummerfield told
Hernandez, “she’s dead,” and led him into the bathroom. Hernandez saw that
April was “in somewhat of a fetal position” with her face facing the back wall and
her chest toward the bottom of the bathtub. The right side of her face was half-
covered in water. Hernandez estimated there were four to six inches of water in
the tub.9 Hernandez lifted April’s body from the bathtub and laid her on the
kitchen floor. Both he and his partner observed blood around the area of April’s
8 The defense presented evidence that four people besides Rummerfield and
Bailey entered the Holley residence before the paramedics arrived and saw April.
However, none of these people touched the body, nor did they know April had
been sexually assaulted, nor did they discuss what they observed with anyone on
9 Various other estimates of the amount of water in the bathtub were given at
defendant’s trial, ranging from three inches to six inches.
buttocks and discussed whether she had been sexually assaulted, but did not
discuss it with any civilians.
Members of the volunteer fire department and the Tulare County Sheriff’s
Department also arrived on the scene. Sergeant Harold Jones of the sheriff’s
department arrived about 2:00 p.m. Based on his observations of the blood around
April’s buttocks, he discussed with other officers whether she may have been
sodomized, but none of the officers discussed this possibility with any civilians.
Indeed, it was the policy of the sheriff’s department not to release any information
to civilians about an investigation.
Dr. Gary Walter, a pathologist, arrived at the Holley residence in the mid-
afternoon. Because of April’s submersion in the bathtub, Dr. Walter was unable to
determine the time of death using body core temperature. Similarly, because the
use of rigor mortis to determine time of death is temperature dependent, he was
unable to use rigor mortis to establish time of death with any precision. In
response to a hypothetical question from the prosecutor, Dr. Walter testified that
the presence of rigor mortis was consistent with the murder’s having occurred
around 9:00 p.m. the previous evening. He also testified, however, that April
could have been murdered at any time from 24 to three hours before he examined
her. Dr. Walters was unable to determine whether April had been sexually
assaulted and conveyed that opinion to the police at the scene.
An autopsy performed on April’s body the Monday after her murder
revealed injuries to her anus and vagina consistent with rape and sodomy; these
acts were perpetrated on her while she was alive. Dr. McCann, a pediatrician with
a subspecialty in childhood sexual abuse, who attended the autopsy, opined that it
was unlikely the sexual assault was committed by a single individual. Dr. Leonard
Miller, the pathologist who performed the autopsy, opined, based on the injuries
he observed, that April was forcibly drowned by “[s]omeone . . . holding this
individual down, presumably underneath water,” in the bathtub. Based on the
presence of petechiae — small blood vessels that have ruptured — on April’s face
and around her eyes and eyelids, Dr. McCann opined that she had struggled
violently as she was being drowned. McCann, observed, however that there were
no signs of injuries to her legs or feet that might have been expected if she were
struggling. Dr. Miller also observed that the absence of roughening of the skin of
her lower legs indicated that they may not have been immersed in water.
b. Defendant’s Movements on December 4
On Sunday morning, December 4, between 9:30 and 10:00 a.m., Kim
Fleeman arrived at the Marshall residence to give her cousin, Nancy Lee Marshall,
a ride into town. Once there, she went to use the bathroom, walking past the room
that defendant occupied. She saw defendant and Bobby Joe Marshall in the
bedroom and heard a voice she recognized as Steven Brown, who was her sister’s
boyfriend. Bobby Joe Marshall said, “we’ve gotta get our stories straight.”
Defendant said, “Where are we gonna say we were the rest of the night?” She also
heard Brown say, “The little bitch deserved everything she got.” While she was in
the bathroom, the bedroom door was shut and she was unable to hear what else
Barney Hernandez saw defendant around 8:00 that morning and noticed he
had blood on his shirt and that he had shaved his goatee. Defendant left after
unsuccessfully attempting to call someone in Oakland. Hernandez saw defendant
again around 11:00 a.m. when he gave defendant a ride. Defendant told him that
he was leaving town and going to Oakland.
Sometime after noon, defendant appeared at the bus where Jimmy
Rousanvall lived. There were a number of people present, including Karen Gore
and Martha Delgado. Karen Gore testified that defendant said that April had been
found in the bathtub and had drowned. Martha Delgado testified that defendant
said that Roger Rummerfield had told him that April had been raped and killed.
Rummerfield, however, did not see or speak to defendant that day. Delgado asked
him why he was not at the Holley residence and he said “he didn’t think the cops
would want him down there.” When she asked, “why not,” he said, “I just don’t
think they’d want me down there, so I just left.”
Rafael del Real testified that he saw defendant sometime between 1:00 and
1:30 p.m. in the vicinity of the Holley residence. According to del Real, defendant
looked back and forth nervously at the Holley residence. His behavior was odd
enough that del Real said to the friend he was with, “Hey, look, what if it was that
guy. Look, he looks scared.”
Sometime between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m., defendant’s friend Brian Pounds
came to the Marshall residence looking for defendant, but defendant was not there.
Pounds returned that evening, when defendant was present, and defendant packed
some clothes and left with Pounds to go to San Leandro.
4. The Ensuing Investigation
a. April’s Drawings and Defendant’s Statements About the
On December 7, police recovered the drawings April had made for
defendant — and which Naomi Holley said she saw at her residence on the day
April was murdered — from defendant’s bedroom at the Marshall residence. On
Friday, December 9, while defendant was in San Leandro or Hayward, he talked to
an acquaintance named Pamela Anderson. Defendant told her that a little girl he
knew had been raped and killed. He told her that “they broke her arm,” and “that
her vagina was so mutilated, you couldn’t tell she had one.” Defendant told her
that the girl “was put in the bathtub, or strangled and drowned in the bathtub.” He
also told her the girl was supposed to have spent the night at a friend’s house but
“something had [gone] wrong and she came home.” He did not tell her that he had
been speaking to people in Tulare about the crime. He did say, however, that “the
police would be looking for him . . . because he was there that day, and because of
his past history, his background . . . but he said that he didn’t do it.”
b. Defendant’s Statements to Police
On December 11, a week after April’s murder, two members of the Tulare
County Sheriff’s Department, Lieutenant Gary Harris and Sergeant Harold Jones,
interviewed defendant in the parking lot of a Denny’s restaurant in San Leandro.10
Defendant was advised of, and waived, his Miranda rights (Miranda v. Arizona
(1966) 384 U.S. 436) (Miranda) and appeared alert, responsive, and eager to
cooperate. He was not under arrest. The interview was conducted in the backseat
of an unmarked police car. The interview was taped and the tape was played at
Initially, defendant told police that on the night of Saturday, December 3,
he went into the City of Tulare to pay off debts he owed to someone named Steve
and then he went riding around in a brown Monte Carlo that he borrowed from
someone named Steve Lynch. He did not see April Holley that night but he
acknowledged that he knew her because of his friendship with her sister, Tammy.
The last time he had been at the Holley residence was a week before the murder
when April had drawn him pictures which he left at the Marshalls’ residence.
10 Before going to San Leandro to interview defendant, Tulare County deputies
obtained a warrant for his arrest based on his alleged failure to update his sexual
offender registration by providing a change of address when he moved from the
City of Tulare to the Marshalls’ residence in Tulare County. The purpose of
obtaining the arrest warrant was to allow the police to arrest defendant in San
Leandro if that became necessary, but the police decided to wait until defendant
returned to Tulare County to arrest him.
Later in the interview he said that, after he left Tulare, he had called the Marshalls
specifically to make sure that the drawings were still in his room.
Defendant said he heard about April’s death from someone named Tanya,
whose last name and age he could not remember. She did not provide any details,
nor were any details provided by a second person named Harvey who confirmed
the news. A little later in the interview he said he had heard from Bob Marshall
that April was found dead in the bathtub and from a “couple of people” that she
was strangled and drowned. He told the officers he had not gone to the Holley
residence on Saturday night.
Defendant told the police that he did not expect Brian Pounds and Donald
Pounds when they turned up at the Marshalls’ residence on Sunday evening and
asked him to come with them. He said he was “like part of their family [and] me
and Brian are like blood brothers.” He later said he wanted to return to Tulare
County because he had left behind some of his clothes.
Under further questioning, defendant changed his story regarding his
whereabouts on Saturday night. He admitted lying about riding around in a brown
Monte Carlo, and instead told the police he had been out selling drugs with a man
named Robert Cinsenio. Defendant said Cinsenio picked him up and they drove to
different towns and cities in King County. Defendant said he had no phone
number for Cinsenio for the officers to verify his alibi. Defendant volunteered his
opinion that whoever killed April was “a sick mother f—-ker,” and, having just
been paroled out of San Quentin, he hated “a child molester.” He added, “I love
kids. Always have.”
Following this first interview, defendant agreed to return to Tulare to
answer more questions. Once he arrived there, on Monday, December 12, he was
arrested on the misdemeanor arrest warrant for violating the sex offender
registration statute. Defendant became angry until it was explained to him that he
was not being arrested for April’s murder. That afternoon he agreed to a second
interview because he wanted to explain some of his earlier statements.
In his second interview, defendant retracted his statement that he had not
seen April the day she was killed. He told police he had seen her with Bobby Joe
Marshall that afternoon and she waved at him. After the police falsely told
defendant that someone had seen him at the Holley residence on Saturday night,
defendant admitted he had gone up to the door that night and knocked but left
when no one answered. After police falsely told him that he had been seen exiting
the back door of the Holley residence, he said he was “loaded on cocaine when I
went over there,” and was looking for Tammy Holley but left after he heard a
noise like a window being broken and heavy breathing. When police confronted
him with Barney Hernandez’s statement that defendant had told him he knew
April was alone, defendant, after first denying having made the statement,
admitted he had talked to April when he had gone looking for her sister. “April,
she told me Tammy wasn’t there, Tammy was in jail, uh, didn’t know where her
mom was.” Defendant said he had told her she should not be alone and walked
out the back door. Defendant also admitted having told Hernandez that he knew
April was alone. He then said, contradicting his earlier accounts of how he had
spent Saturday night that, after leaving the Hernandez residence he went back to
the Marshalls’ residence, watched television and went to sleep.
The police then falsely told defendant that his semen had been found in
April. Defendant denied it was his and after an angry exchange said, “I was there
. . . . But I didn’t kill that little girl.” Defendant said that April was already dead
and in the bathtub when he saw her. Defendant said he saw a man running out of
the Holley residence, and then he went inside and saw April in the bathtub. A
moment later he retracted his statement that he had been inside the residence.
The police then asked defendant why he had told one of them the day
before that he had never thought of sodomizing little girls. Defendant said, “I
don’t know, just some[thing] of mine that came out . . . I don’t know, why, was
April sodomized?” The police then asked him how he knew April had been
strangled because no one had that information. Defendant then said, “how did I
know, well, I did it? Alright, I did it. Come on, I’m saying that I did it . . . You
know what, I didn’t do it. I’m not saying I did it. I’m not saying nothing.”
Defendant repeatedly denied he had killed April. He also retracted his statement
that he had seen her in the bathtub and denied that he had taken the drawings she
had made for him from the Holley residence the night she was killed. Defendant
then began to request a lawyer, the interview was terminated, and he was arrested
for April’s murder.
DNA in semen found on a rectal slide taken from April was found to
match Steven Brown’s DNA. Various hair samples were collected from the crime
scene. Two separate experts in hair analysis, Steven O’Clair and Charles Morton,
analyzed the samples for the prosecution. O’Clair testified that three pubic hairs
found in the bathtub were consistent with samples of defendant’s hairs. Morton
agreed that two of the three pubic hairs were consistent with defendant’s hair as
was a third pubic hair found on April’s sweatshirt.
On Christmas Day, 1988, David Jurkovich, an inmate at Tulare County jail
approached defendant and told him that “if you did that to that little girl,” then
“you have no God because no God will have you.” Defendant replied, “she wasn’t
the first and she won’t be the last, motherf—ker.”
Evidence was also presented that in May, 1990, Steven Brown entered the
home of 74-year-old Margaret Allen while she was asleep and sexually assaulted
and attempted to drown her. She survived.
5. Defendant’s Guilt Phase Evidence
The defense consisted of impeaching the statements of prosecution
witnesses as to the details of their testimony and their credibility. Additionally,
defendant presented evidence to support the defense theory that Steven Brown
acted alone in sexually assaulting and killing April Holley, although possibly in
the presence of Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr. For example, the defense presented
several witnesses who testified that Marshall and Brown were together the night
that April was killed. The defense also sought to establish that April was not
killed around 9:30 p.m. on Saturday night, as the prosecution claimed, but in the
early morning hours of Sunday, December 4. The defense also presented evidence
that there were numerous people inside and outside of the Holley residence on
Sunday morning who might have speculated or gossiped about the circumstances
of April’s death, to counter prosecution evidence that no details were released to
the public. The defense also produced testimony to support its claim that Donald
and Brian Pounds had planned to come to Tulare two or three days before
December 4, to counter prosecution evidence that they had come that day
specifically to take defendant with them. The defense also presented its own hair
analysis expert, Stephan Schliebe who disputed testimony from the prosecution
experts that pubic hairs removed from the bathtub and April’s sweater were
consistent with defendant’s hair. A second defense expert, Peter Barnett, also
testified to this effect.
B. Penalty Phase Evidence
Gina I. testified that in 1982, when she was 16 years old, defendant, along
with Donald Pounds, Jr., and Brian Pounds, raped her at a party at Donald
Pounds’s residence. She testified that, after Donald Pounds raped her, defendant
came into the room and said “those guys told me that you said I was a faggot, and
I’m gonna prove to you I’m not.” He struck her and as he raped her he said, “f—k
you, c—t, I hate all you women,” and “you’re a bitch, you all get what you
deserve, and I’m not a faggot.” Defendant pled guilty to forcible rape in 1982.
Michael M. testified that, while he and defendant were in prison, defendant,
after learning M. had been convicted of rape, forced M. to orally copulate him and
then subsequently sexually assaulted him 10 to 20 times. Defendant, whom M.
described as the “head white representative of the barracks,” also made M.
perform sexual acts on other inmates.
Julia Parnell, who dated defendant in 1984, and her son Chris O., testified
that defendant once squeezed the genitals of Parnell’s other son, Richard, when he
was an infant because he was crying. Defendant squeezed him with such force
that he required hospitalization. Michael Montejano, the police officer who
investigated defendant’s abuse of the infant, testified that defendant denied having
injured the infant because he “loved Richard as if he was his own, and he would
not abuse him, that he was not a child abuser.” Defendant also told Montejano
that “the person who [was] responsible would be sorry if he ever found out who
2. Defendant’s Penalty Phase Evidence
Defendant’s penalty phase evidence focused on his family history. Various
family members, including two brothers, a sister, his mother, and maternal
grandmother testified that defendant was raised in an atmosphere of neglect and
violence. Defendant did not live with both his parents until he was eight years old.
Until then he was sometimes raised by his maternal grandparents and sometimes
by his mother alone in Arkansas. At one point, defendant and his siblings were
removed from his mother’s custody because of her failure to provide proper care
for them. In 1971, when defendant was eight, his mother moved with her children
to California to rejoin defendant’s father. Defendant’s father was an alcoholic and
he and defendant’s mother sometimes got into physical fights. Defendant tried to
get between his parents when they fought, but he was pushed back or hit. When
defendant’s father was sober he was hard on defendant. Defendant was described
as a “bullheaded and stubborn” child who needed considerable attention and
discipline, which he did not receive from his mother. Almost the only people able
to control defendant were his maternal grandparents. However, even they were
unable to handle defendant after he started using drugs.
Dr. Yosef Gershuri, a psychologist, interviewed defendant over a three- or
four-hour period to assess his mental status. He testified defendant had an IQ of
73 and suffered from attention deficit disorder as well as having borderline
intellectual function and associated personality disorders. Dr. Gershuri explained
that attention deficit disorder is “a disorder of attention, disordered impulsivity,
and a disorder of hyperactivity, being very . . . overly active.” He also explained
that individuals suffering from this disorder “eventually develop very aggressive
behaviors towards others.” Dr. Gershuri testified that a child with this disorder
would have difficulties in school and, as a result, experience derogatory
assessments of his performance that would contribute to low self-esteem. In the
family, such a child might be punished, but punishment would do little except to
make the child more upset.
Gary Yates, a licensed marriage, family, and child counselor, reviewed
interviews of defendant’s family members and information about defendant’s
childhood, including probation reports, school records, and medical records.
Based on that review, Yates testified that there were “severe family dysfunctions”
in defendant’s family, including his father’s alcoholism, a pattern of spousal
abuse, and physical neglect of defendant and his siblings. Yates testified that a
father’s alcoholism was the “highest predictor” for alcoholism in male children as
well as other “poor outcomes.” Yates testified that defendant’s exposure to his
father’s physical assaults on his mother, in addition to creating “school problems,
truancy, [and] low self-esteem” might also correlate to the use of violence by
defendant against women. Yates testified further that defendant evidenced
attention deficit disorder that was undiagnosed and untreated. Children suffering
with this disorder often become substance abusers in an attempt to self-medicate.
Yates also testified that defendant showed signs of self-destructive behavior.
Yates concluded that defendant’s adult behavior was predictable given his
dysfunctional family and the unavailability of any help for him with his various
problems when he was a child.
A. Jury Selection and Pretrial Issues
1. Prosecutor’s Use of Peremptory Challenges to Excuse Death
Defendant contends that the prosecutor improperly used his peremptory
challenges to excuse any prospective juror who expressed reservations about the
death penalty and, in a related argument, that the prosecutor improperly excused
prospective jurors based on their religious affiliation.
As a preliminary matter, defendant asserts that his “jurors were so death-
primed that they could not act as the conscience of the community.” Defendant
does not, however, contend that the trial court erred by denying a defense
challenge for cause against any of these jurors based on their views about the
death penalty. (See Wainwright v. Witt (1985) 469 U.S. 412, 424 [prospective
juror may be excused for cause if his or her views on the death penalty would
“ ‘prevent or substantially impair the performance of his duties as a juror in
accordance with his instructions and his oath’ ”]; People v. Ghent (1987) 43
Cal.3d 739, 767 [adopting Witt standard].) Moreover, defense counsel accepted
the panel about which defendant now complains even though the defense had not
exhausted its peremptory challenges. (People v. Cox (1991) 53 Cal.3d 618, 648,
fn. 4 [“defense acceptance of jury without exhausting peremptory challenges is
‘strong indicator that the jurors were fair, and that the defense itself so
concluded”], quoting People v. Balderas (1985) 41 Cal.3d 144, 180.) Under these
circumstances, we agree with the Attorney General that defendant’s retrospective
characterization of his jury as “death-primed” does not, in and of itself, raise a
cognizable issue on appeal.
Defendant next argues that the prosecutor’s use of peremptory challenges to
excuse any prospective juror who expressed any reservation about the death
penalty violated his constitutional right to a representative jury. As defendant
concedes, we have repeatedly rejected this argument. “[W]e see no . . .
constitutional infirmity in permitting peremptory challenges by both sides on the
basis of specific juror attitudes on the death penalty. While a statute requiring
exclusion of all jurors with any feeling against the death penalty produces a jury
biased in favor of death [citation], we have no proof that a similar bias arises, on
either guilt or penalty issues, when both parties are allowed to exercise their equal,
limited numbers of peremptory challenges . . . against jurors harboring specific
attitudes they reasonably believe unfavorable.” (People v. Turner (1984) 37
Cal.3d 302, 315; see People v. Brown (2004) 33 Cal.4th 382, 403 [“The
prosecution’s use of peremptory challenges to remove prospective jurors who
express scruples about imposing the death penalty does not violate any
constitutional guarantee”].) We are unpersuaded by defendant’s arguments that
invite us to reconsider our analysis of this claim.
Defendant then contends that, in his effort to remove any prospective juror
with reservations about the death penalty, the prosecutor systematically excluded
prospective jurors based on their religious affiliation in violation of People v.
Wheeler (1978) 22 Cal.3d 259 (Wheeler). Counsel failed to make a Wheeler
motion at trial. This omission forfeits the issue on appeal. (People v. Bolin (1998)
18 Cal.4th 297, 316.)11 Even if the claim was not forfeited, we would reject it on
“We have previously stated that religious membership constitutes an
identifiable group under Wheeler.” (In re Freeman (2006) 38 Cal.4th 630, 643.)
“ ‘Such a practice [religious-based excusals] also violates the defendant’s right to
equal protection under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States
Constitution.’ ” (People v. Bell (2007) 40 Cal.4th 582, 596.) Here, however, the
jurors were not excused based on their denominational affiliations because none of
11 Defendant urges us not to apply any procedural bars to any of his claims but,
rather, to review them on their merits because of the finality of the death penalty.
We have recognized exceptions to the forfeiture doctrine with respect to certain
constitutional claims raised for the first time on appeal. (See People v. Boyer
(2006) 38 Cal.4th 412, 441, fn. 1 (Boyer); People v. Partida (2005) 37 Cal.4th
428, 433-439.) But we have never held that forfeiture is inapplicable to an entire
class of cases and we will not do so here. Therefore we will entertain
constitutional claims not raised below only to the extent “the new arguments do
not invoke facts or legal standards different from those the trial court itself was
asked to apply, but merely assert that the trial court’s act or omission, insofar as
wrong for the reasons actually presented to that court, had the additional legal
consequence of violating the Constitution. . . . [¶] In [this] instance, of course,
rejection, on the merits, of a claim that the trial court erred on the issue actually
before that court necessarily leads to rejection of the newly applied constitutional
‘gloss’ as well. No separate constitutional discussion is required in such cases,
and we therefore provide none.” (Boyer, supra, 38 Cal.4th at p. 441, fn. 17.)
them said such affiliation would prevent them from imposing the death penalty.
Thus, there is no basis in the record to conclude that they were excused because of
their membership in a particular religious group. To the extent defendant is
arguing it was improper to excuse them because any reluctance on their part to
impose the death penalty was based on their religious belief — although there is
nothing in the record to indicate this was the case — he is wrong.
Prospective Juror P.B. specifically told the court that she had no religious
beliefs that would interfere with her ability to reach a judgment. In response to
defense questioning, she reaffirmed the observation she made in her juror
questionnaire that there are biblical accounts of imposing the death penalty and, in
response to her feelings about the death penalty, stated, “I think it’s based on an
individual basis, and I don’t think that currently I could say one way or the other
how a decision should be made at this point.”
Prospective Juror R.J., an Episcopal priest, while stating that he preferred
not to sit on a death penalty case, said he could vote for the death penalty if he
believed it was warranted, although this would be “extremely difficult.” Nowhere,
however, did he state that his membership in the Episcopalian church would
prevent him from imposing the death penalty. Indeed, in response to a prosecution
question, he said that even if his church was opposed to the death penalty, that
position “really wouldn’t affect me” because of the structure of the church.
Moreover, his greatest concern was that the unexpected departure of his assistant
had left him short-handed.
Prospective Juror J.C., identified himself as a Catholic but said,
notwithstanding his church’s opposition to the death penalty, he could impose the
death penalty “[i]f that is the law.” Prospective Juror W.D. noted on his juror
questionnaire that his religious organization did not consider the death penalty a
solution, but also stated he did not feel an obligation to accept that view. W.D.
stated that, notwithstanding his church’s position on the death penalty, he could
vote for the death penalty in the appropriate case.
Clearly, none of these prospective jurors took the position that their
religious affiliations would prevent them from imposing the death penalty. Thus,
we are not persuaded by defendant’s claim that their religious affiliations were the
basis of the peremptory challenges. And even if their ambivalence toward the
death penalty had some basis in their religious views, “[e]xcusing prospective
jurors who have a religious bent or bias that would make it difficult for them to
impose the death penalty is a proper, nondiscriminatory ground for a peremptory
challenge.” (People v. Cash (2002) 28 Cal.4th 703, 725.)
Prospective Jurors for Cause
Defendant contends that the trial court’s excusal for cause of eight
prospective jurors who stated unequivocally they could not impose the death
penalty violated his right to a representative jury because the court’s questioning
was inadequate. Alternatively, he contends that the elimination of any prospective
juror who would not impose the death penalty denied him an impartial jury drawn
from a fair cross-section of the community.
“A prospective juror may be challenged for cause based upon his or her
views regarding capital punishment only if those views would ‘ “prevent or
substantially impair” ’ the performance of the juror’s duties as defined by the
court’s instructions and the juror’s oath. [Citations.] ‘ “ ‘A prospective juror is
properly excluded if he or she is unable to conscientiously consider all of the
sentencing alternatives, including the death penalty where appropriate.’
[Citation.]” [Citation.] In addition, “ ‘[o]n appeal, we will uphold the trial court’s
ruling if it is fairly supported by the record, accepting as binding the trial court’s
determination as to the prospective juror’s true state of mind when the prospective
juror has made statements that are conflicting or ambiguous.’ [Citations.]” ’
[Citation.]” (People v. Cunningham (2001) 25 Cal.4th 926, 975.)
Six of the eight prospective jurors to whom defendant refers stated on their
juror questionnaires that they would always vote against death while a seventh,
I.R., stated that he was compelled to follow his church’s teaching “not to kill
another human being.” In response to questioning by the court, each of these
jurors confirmed that they would not impose the death penalty under any
circumstance. The eighth juror, E.I., gave equivocal answers on her questionnaire
about whether she could impose the death penalty but, during extensive
questioning by the court, indicated that stress caused her stomach problems that
made her “have to go to the restroom a lot.” She indicated further that,
notwithstanding her belief in the death penalty, she didn’t “know if [she] could
condemn somebody to death,” and “I don’t know if I could live with myself if I
did that.” In further colloquy, she told the court she believed she was “too
emotional” to make the decision whether to impose death and being faced with the
decision would aggravate her “nervous stomach.” The court excused her on the
grounds that her “opinions and feelings would substantially impair her ability to be
fair in this case.”
Although defendant criticizes the adequacy of the court’s questioning, he
does not point to specific deficiencies. On this record, we conclude that the trial
court’s questioning was adequate and that it properly excused these prospective
jurors for cause. Thus, this case is quite different from the cases on which
defendant relies, in which one trial court improperly excused five jurors based
solely on their juror questionnaire answers (People v. Stewart (2004) 33 Cal.4th
425, 445), and another court improperly excused a prospective juror even after the
prospective juror indicated he would not automatically vote for life without
possibility of parole, rather than impose death, no matter what the evidence
showed (People v. Heard (2003) 31 Cal.4th 946, 963-966).
We have repeatedly rejected defendant’s alternative claim, concluding that
“[t]he exclusion of those categorically opposed to the death penalty at the guilt
phase of the trial does not offend either the United States Constitution [citation] or
the California Constitution [citation]. As the United States Supreme Court
explained, death penalty opponents, ‘or for that matter any other group defined
solely in terms of shared attitudes that render members of the group unable to
serve as jurors in a particular case, may be excluded from jury service without
contravening any of the basic objectives of the fair-cross-section requirement.’
[Citations.] It is also well settled that this exclusion does not violate defendant’s
right to an impartial jury.” (People v. Jackson (1996) 13 Cal.4th 1164, 1198,
quoting Lockhart v. McCree (1986) 476 U.S. 162, 176-177; see People v. Lenart
(2004) 32 Cal.4th 1107, 1120; People v. Steele (2002) 27 Cal.4th 1230, 1243;
People v. Catlin (2001) 26 Cal.4th 81, 112.) As in those cases, “[d]efendant here
has likewise failed to make a compelling case for us to revisit this issue.” (People
v. Lenart, supra, 32 Cal.4th at p. 1120.)
3. Denial of Defense Challenge for Cause
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously refused to excuse for
cause Prospective Juror E.M. who he claims gave answers on her jury
questionnaire, and in response to the court’s examination, that revealed she would
automatically vote for the death penalty. Following the court’s refusal to excuse
E.M., defendant used a peremptory challenge to excuse her. Defendant did not,
however, exhaust his peremptory challenges.
Defendant’s claim fails for the simple reason that, even assuming E.M. was
biased, she did not serve on the jury and therefore “could [not] possibly have
affected the jury’s fairness . . . .” (People v. Yeoman (2003) 31 Cal.4th 93, 114.)
As we further explained in Yeoman, “[a]n erroneous ruling that forces a defendant
to use a peremptory challenge, and thus leaves him unable to exclude a juror who
actually sits on his case, provides grounds for reversal only if the defendant ‘can
actually show that his right to an impartial jury was affected . . . .’ [Citation.] In
other words, the loss of a peremptory challenge in this manner ‘ “provides grounds
for reversal only if the defendant exhausts all peremptory challenges and an
incompetent juror is forced upon him.” ’ [Citations.]” (Ibid.) Here, where
defendant did not exhaust all his peremptory challenges, he cannot even begin to
demonstrate that his right to an impartial jury was impaired by the trial court’s
refusal to excuse E.M. for cause, even assuming this was error. Defendant spills
considerable ink urging that we not apply this principle to his claim but his
arguments are not persuasive.
4. Suppression of Defendant’s Postarrest Statement to Police
a. Illegality of Defendant’s Arrest
Defendant contends that his arrest was illegal because the affidavit
submitted in support of the arrest warrant designated the wrong subdivision of
section 290 as the offense for which his arrest was sought. He argues therefore that
his postarrest statement should have been suppressed. We disagree.
Because of his 1982 conviction for forcible rape, defendant was required to
register as a sex offender under section 290. The police report, incorporated by
reference into the affidavit seeking an arrest warrant, cited both section “290(a)
PC” and “fail[ure] to comply with 290 PC.” The body of the report stated that the
investigating officer, Deputy Pinon, had ascertained from the Tulare Police
Department that defendant had registered with that agency on November 24, 1986,
at an address on West Merrit in the City of Tulare. As of September 1988,
however, he had moved and was living on Canal Street in an unincorporated area
of Tulare county. Pinon sought the warrant based on defendant’s failure to
register with the sheriff’s department upon taking up residence in the county.
Section 290, subdivision (a), as it existed in 1988, set forth the general
requirement that individuals required to register as sex offenders shall “within 14
days of coming into any county or city . . . in which he or she temporarily resides
or is domiciled for that length of time register with the chief of police of the city in
which he or she is domiciled or the sheriff of the county if he or she is domiciled
in an unincorporated area.” (Stats. 1987, ch. 1418, § 3.1, pp. 5225-5228.) Section
290, subdivision (f) provided that if a person required to register changed his or
her address “the person shall inform, in writing within 10 days, the law
enforcement agency with whom he or she last registered of the new address.”
Defendant argues that, in essence, he had no obligation to register with the
sheriff’s department upon moving to Canal Street, under subdivision (a), and that
the only former section 290 offense he could have been arrested for in 1988 was
under subdivision (f), based on his failure to notify the Tulare Police Department
of his change of address. He reasons that because Pinon’s report did not establish
probable cause to support his commission of that offense, the affidavit was fatally
defective and the resulting arrest warrant invalid.12
“Probable cause to issue an arrest or search warrant must . . . be based on
information contained in an affidavit providing a substantial basis from which the
12 The current version of section 290, subdivision (a) makes it clear that those
subject to the registration requirement must, upon changing their address, register
with the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction over the area to which they
have removed themselves and also notify the law enforcement agency with whom
they had been registered of their new address. (§ 290, subds. (a)(1)(A), (f)(1);
People v. Musovich (2006) 138 Cal.App.4th 983, 988.)
magistrate can reasonably conclude there is a fair probability that a person has
committed a crime or a place contains contraband or evidence of a crime.” (Bailey
v. Superior Court (1992) 11 Cal.App.4th 1107, 1111.) As to the sufficiency of the
affidavits, such “affidavits ‘are normally drafted by nonlawyers in the midst and
haste of a criminal investigation. Technical requirements of elaborate specificity
once exacted under common law pleadings have no proper place in this area.’
[Citation.]” (Illinois v. Gates (1982) 462 U.S. 213, 235.) “Recital of some of the
underlying circumstances in the affidavit is essential if the magistrate is to perform
his detached function and not serve merely as a rubber stamp for the police.
However, where these circumstances are detailed . . . and when a magistrate has
found probable cause, the courts should not invalidate the warrant by interpreting
the affidavit in a hypertechnical, rather than a commonsense manner. . . .[T]he
resolution of doubtful or marginal cases in this area should be largely determined
by the preference to be accorded to warrants.” (United States v. Ventresca (1965)
380 U.S. 102, 109.) Furthermore, “[i]n cases where an officer had in mind facts
which justified an arrest, and made an arrest upon those facts, the arrests have
been held lawful despite the officer’s having cited some other closely related
offense at the time of arrest or in testifying.” (People v. Howell (1973) 30
Cal.App.3d 228, 235.)
Applying these principles, we reject defendant’s claim for the following
reasons. First, defendant provides no authority — nor has our research revealed
any — to support his claim that a registrant who moved from one jurisdiction into
another was not required to both report his change of address with the law
enforcement agency in the old jurisdiction and to register with law enforcement in
the new jurisdiction, even under section 290 as it existed in 1988. Nor is such a
construction of the statute plausible because it would have left law enforcement in
the new jurisdiction unaware that a sex offender had moved into the community.
This would have been fundamentally inconsistent with the longstanding purpose
of section 290 “ ‘ “ ‘to assure that persons convicted of the crimes enumerated
therein shall be readily available for police surveillance at all times because the
Legislature deemed them likely to commit similar offenses in the future.’ ” ’ ”
(People v. Hofsheier (2006) 37 Cal.4th 1185, 1196.) Thus, it is not at all clear that
the affidavit did not correctly describe a violation of section 290, subdivision (a).
Second, it is also not clear that the affidavit did not adequately describe a
violation of section 290, subdivision (f). The police report filed in connection
with the affidavit related (1) that the affiant officer had “checked with the Tulare
P[olice] D[epartment] and found that [defendant] had registered with Tulare Police
Dept. [on] November 24, 1986” at “1781 W. Merrit, Tulare,” and (2) that, as of
September 1988, defendant was living with the Marshall family on Canal Street in
an unincorporated area of Tulare County. A teletype attached to the affidavit also
confirmed that defendant had registered with the Tulare Police Department in
1986, but did not show that he had registered his change of address with any law
enforcement agency. It can be inferred from these facts that defendant had failed
to notify the Tulare Police Department of his change of address in 1988, thus
violating section 290, subdivision (f).
Third, even assuming that the affiant officer designated the wrong
subdivision of section 290, there is no question that interpreting the affidavit in a
commonsense manner, as opposed to defendant’s hypertechnical reading, supports
the magistrate’s finding that there was probable cause to believe defendant had
violated some provision of section 290. The misdesignation may have provided
defendant a defense at trial (cf. People v. McCleod (1997) 55 Cal.App.4th 1205,
1209, fn. 1), but it does not obviate probable cause for the purpose of the issuance
of the arrest warrant.
b. Delay in Defendant’s Arraignment on the Misdemeanor
Defendant also contends that his postarrest statement should have been
suppressed because the police violated section 825 by unnecessarily delaying his
arraignment on the misdemeanor section 290 charge. We reject his claim.
At the time of defendant’s arrest, section 825, as relevant, provided: “The
defendant must in all cases be taken before the magistrate without unnecessary
delay, and, in any event, within two days after his arrest, excluding Sundays and
holidays . . . .” (As amended by Stats. 1961, ch. 2209, § 1, p. 4554.) “Of course,
section 825 does not ‘authorize a two-day detention in all cases. Instead, “a limit
[is placed] upon what may be considered a necessary delay, and a detention of less
than two days, if unreasonable under the circumstances, is in violation of the
statute” and of the Constitution.’ ” (People v. Turner (1994) 8 Cal.4th 137, 175.)
Nonetheless, “[t]o justify exclusion of a statement, defendant must show that the
delay produced his admissions or that there was an essential connection between
the illegal detention and admissions of guilt.” (Id. at p. 176; People v. Sapp
(2003) 31 Cal.4th 240, 270 [“delay in arraignment would justify suppressing a
confession only upon a defendant’s showing that the confession was the product
of an illegal detention”].)
Here, the evidence produced at defendant’s motion to suppress his
statement demonstrated that he was arraigned within two days of his arrest and,
further, at his own request was not arraigned the day after his arrest. Defendant
was arrested on the misdemeanor section 290 charge about 11:40 p.m. on Sunday,
December 11, 1988, and arraigned on that charge in the early afternoon of
Tuesday, December 13, 1988. The reason he was not arraigned on Monday,
December 12, was because he wanted to rest in order to take a second polygraph
examination regarding his involvement in the Holley murder after the first proved
inconclusive because he was fatigued.
On this record it is clear that defendant was arraigned on the misdemeanor
charge within the two-day outer limit set forth in section 825 and that the failure to
have arraigned him on the day after his arrest did not constitute unnecessary delay
because it was at his request. (See People v. Thompson (1980) 27 Cal.3d 303,
328, 330 [where defendant was arrested on Sunday night and not arraigned until
Tuesday, and the purpose for the delay was to allow defendant and arresting
officer to sleep, “even if section 825 were violated, that would not render
[defendant’s] confession inadmissible”].)13 Thus, this case is distinguishable from
People v. Jenkins (2004) 122 Cal.App.4th 1160, cited by defendant, because in
Jenkins the delay in arraignment on a misdemeanor arrest was “used solely to
question defendant” about the offenses for which he was ultimately convicted, first
degree murder and attempted murder. (Id. at pp. 1175-1176.) Moreover, “even if
a confession occurs during a period of illegal detention under section 825, that fact
does not render it inadmissible. A delay in arraignment is treated ‘as only one of
the factors to be considered in determining whether the statement was voluntarily
made.’ ” (People v. Thompson, supra, 27 Cal.3d at p. 329.) Other than the bare
fact that defendant made the challenged statement before he was arraigned,
defendant points us to nothing in the record that demonstrates a connection
between the claimed illegal delay and the statement that would justify suppression.
13 Thus, because any delay was not for purposes of eliciting incriminating
statements, there was no federal constitutional violation. (County of Riverside v.
McLaughlin (1991) 500 U.S. 44, 56 [delay of less than presumptively prompt 48
hours may violate Fourth Amend. if delay was for improper purpose].)
Lastly, defendant contends his postarrest statement should have been
excluded because it was involuntary. Defendant deploys a number of arguments
in support of this claim, among them that his statement was the result of police
deception, that the questioning was overly aggressive, that his low IQ made him
particularly vulnerable to the questioning, and a suggestion that his statement was
obtained in violation of Miranda. Based on our review of defendant’s statement,
we conclude that neither singularly nor collectively are these claims persuasive.
After defendant was interviewed in San Leandro on December 10, he
voluntarily agreed to return to Tulare County the following day. When he arrived,
on Sunday, December 11, he was arrested on the misdemeanor arrest warrant and
became angry until it was explained to him that he was not being arrested for the
Holley murder. Defendant requested a polygraph examination that evening. He
was readvised of his rights, waived them and the polygraph examination was
administered. The results of the first examination were inconclusive and
defendant requested a second one. He also wanted to rest before it was
administered, so he was placed in an area of the jail where “he could get plenty of
sleep and not be bothered.” The second polygraph was administered in the early
afternoon. He was then interrogated that afternoon in the office of the violent
crimes unit beginning about 3:55 p.m. He was again advised of and waived his
rights, before the interrogation. The interrogation lasted about an hour and 40
minutes. During the course of the interview, as defendant shifted and changed his
story, he became agitated, “put[ting] his forehead down on the desk and . . .
whining and moaning,” “jump[ing] up, and . . . rant[ing] and rav[ing.]” At the end
of the questioning he “suddenly jumped up,” and tried to kick Lieutenant Harris.
Defendant, however, was restrained by leg irons and a “belly chain.” During the
course of the interrogation, the police gave him false information, telling him, for
example, that witnesses had seen him leaving the Holley residence the night of the
murder and that his semen had been found in the victim. When defendant
requested a lawyer, the interrogation was ended.
“A statement is involuntary when ‘among other circumstances, it “was
‘ “extracted by any sort of threats . . . , [or] obtained by any direct or implied
promises, however slight . . . .” ’ ” [Citations.] Voluntariness does not turn on
any one fact, no matter how apparently significant, but rather on the “totality of
[the] circumstances.’ ” (People v. Neal (2003) 31 Cal.4th 63, 79.) . . . [¶] ‘In
reviewing the trial court’s determinations of voluntariness, we apply an
independent standard of review, doing so “in light of the record in its entirety,
including ‘all the surrounding circumstances — both the characteristics of the
accused and the details of the [encounter].’ ” ’ (People v. Neal, supra, 31 Cal.4th
at p. 80.) But ‘ “we accept the trial court’s factual findings, based on its resolution
of factual disputes, its choices among conflicting inferences, and its evaluations of
witness credibility, provided that these findings are supported by substantial
evidence.” [Citation.]’ ” (People v. Jablonski (2006) 37 Cal.4th 774, 813-814.)
Applying these principles, we reject defendant’s argument that police
deception rendered his statement involuntary. “ ‘Lies told by the police to a
suspect under questioning can affect the voluntariness of an ensuing confession,
but they are not per se sufficient to make it involuntary.’ ” (People v. Farnam
(2002) 28 Cal.4th 107, 182.) Here, the police deceived defendant only about
having been seen by two witnesses leaving the Holley residence — which
ultimately led him to admit he was in the residence, a statement he then retracted
— and that his semen was found in the victim — a statement he vehemently
denied. Viewing these statements under the totality of the circumstances test, we
cannot say they rendered defendant’s statement involuntary.
Defendant also claims that, as the interrogation progressed, the questioning
became increasingly aggressive, leading him to become confused and hysterical.
Our review of the transcript, however, indicates not that the police engaged in
overly aggressive behavior but, rather, that defendant became increasingly agitated
as he was caught in one lie after another. Defendant also asserts that his low IQ —
he later tested at 73 — made him especially vulnerable in the interrogation
setting. The police, however, had no reason to know that defendant had a low IQ,
nor do his responses during the interrogation indicate mental defect. (Compare
People v. Neal, supra, 31 Cal.4th at p. 84 [“And defendant’s intelligence, as the
record reveals from beginning to end, was quite low” (italics added)].) Finally,
contrary to defendant’s suggestion, his statement was not obtained in violation of
his Miranda rights. Rather, the interrogation was terminated shortly after
defendant requested a lawyer.
Indeed, as his invocation of his right to counsel demonstrates, and contrary
to his characterization of himself as a helpless, easily confused naïf, defendant, a
convicted felon, was wise in the ways of the criminal justice system, unlike the
defendant in Neal to whom he compares himself. (People v. Neal, supra, 31
Cal.3d at p. 84 [noting that the 18-year-old defendant had little knowledge of the
criminal justice system, minimal education, low intelligence, and was kept
isolated, hungry, and incommunicado].) Accordingly, the totality of the
circumstances attending defendant’s statement do not support his claim that it was
the involuntary product of police coercion.
5. Public Defender Conflict
Defendant contends that the trial court violated his rights to due process and
to counsel when it relieved the public defenders who had represented him for 14
months because their office had represented a potential prosecution witness,
notwithstanding defendant’s willingness to waive any conflict of interest. Because
his public defenders took the position that they would be unable to cross-examine
their former client should he testify, defendant alternatively maintains the trial
court should have preemptively excluded the testimony rather than relieve his
On February 9, 1990, the public defenders representing defendant, Mssrs.
Pereira and Cherney, informed the court of a potential conflict of interest they had
discovered in reviewing the prosecution’s witness list. Included on the list was
Lester Smith, whom the public defender’s office had represented in two felony
cases from November 1988 through September 1989. Smith had been sentenced
to 21 years in state prison; the public defender had unsuccessfully sought to have
Smith housed out of state. The prosecution had agreed to allow Smith to be
housed out of state if he testified truthfully against defendant that defendant told
him he had raped and killed April Holley while Smith and defendant were housed
in the Tulare County jail. Defendant had made a similar admission to another
inmate, Tony Enos, before he talked to Smith. Smith had spoken to Enos.
Mr. Pereira, who had been personally involved in some aspects of his
office’s representation of Smith, explained to the court that based on these
contacts with Smith, “I could not properly, adequately or effectively cross-
examine Smith in [defendant’s] case.” When pressed by the court to elaborate,
Pereira said that, should he cross-examine Smith, Smith might be able to invoke
attorney-client privilege to not answer certain questions, or that he might blurt out
that the public defender had previously represented him, which would “discredit
myself and Mr. Cherney” before the jury. He also explained that attacking
Smith’s credibility might result in Smith not getting the benefit of his agreement
with the prosecutor to be housed in an out-of-state prison and he could not do
anything that would injure a former client.
The prosecutor stated that “[i]t’s our intention to call Lester Smith. It’s not
to say we’re going to call him, because you never know what’s going to happen at
trial. We certainly wouldn’t want to be put in a position now of being precluded
from calling Mr. Smith.” The court and counsel explored various avenues around
the conflict, including appointing a third attorney for defendant for the limited
purpose of cross-examining Smith — to which the defense objected — or
videotaping Smith’s testimony, or requiring the prosecution to call him as one of
its first five witnesses — to which the prosecution objected. The court and
counsel also discussed appointing independent counsel to advise defendant about
his right to conflict-free counsel should defendant insist on being represented by
the public defender.
Although the prosecutor stated that he was not requesting recusal of the
public defender’s office, he was concerned that permitting defendant to waive the
conflict would result in a mistrial or potential reversible error. The court found
this position to be unsatisfying. “[Y]ou can’t have it both ways, Mr. Ferguson.
You either have to tell me that you want me to recuse the Public Defender’s Office
because we can’t get a knowing, intelligent, voluntar[y] waiver, or you want to see
if we can get a knowing, intelligent and volunt[a]ry and understanding waiver.”
The prosecutor replied: “Our position is that they have to conflict out.”
At the end of the colloquy, Mr. Pereira asked to be relieved, saying, “I
cannot and no Public Defender will cross-examine Lester Smith in this case.”
Nonetheless, he informed the court that defendant was prepared to waive his right
to a conflict-free attorney in order to keep Pereira and Cherney as his lawyers.
However, he then suggested another solution — exclusion of Smith’s testimony
under Evidence Code section 352. The prosecution objected and the matter was
Subsequently, the defense filed a written motion to exclude Smith’s
testimony as cumulative and more prejudicial than probative in view of its impact
on the ability of the public defender to continue to represent defendant. The
prosecution opposed the motion, arguing that recourse to Evidence Code section
352 to solve a conflict of interest problem was inappropriate and that Smith’s
testimony was not cumulative but corroborative in a case based on circumstantial
evidence. The trial court denied the motion and relieved defendant’s counsel. The
prosecution did not call Lester Smith to the stand.
Defendant contends the trial court’s ruling — denying this Evidence Code
section 352 motion and relieving counsel — violated both the federal and state
Constitutions. We disagree.
A trial court may remove defense counsel, even over defendant’s
objections, “in order to eliminate potential conflicts, ensure adequate
representation, or prevent substantial impairment of court proceedings . . . .”
(People v. McKenzie (1983) 34 Cal.3d 616, 629.) On appeal, the trial court’s
removal of counsel is reviewed for abuse of discretion. “ ‘A court abuses its
discretion when it acts unreasonably under the circumstances of the particular
case.’ ” (People v. Panah (2005) 35 Cal.4th 395, 426.) “Inherent in the question
whether a trial court may disqualify a criminal defense attorney over the
defendant’s objection is the conflict between the defendant’s preference to be
represented by that attorney and the court’s interest in ‘ensuring that criminal trials
are conducted within the ethical standards of the profession and that legal
proceedings appear fair to all who observe them. ’ ” (People v. Jones (2004) 33
Cal.4th 234, 240, quoting Wheat v. United States (1988) 486 U.S. 153, 160
Jones is instructive. There, the trial court disqualified defense counsel
because his office had represented an individual whom the defense viewed as a
possible third party culprit in the defendant’s case, even though defense counsel
had represented the defendant for two years and the defendant offered to waive the
conflict. In the end, the defense did not put on evidence relating to the former
client of the disqualified attorney. As here, the defendant argued on appeal that
removal of counsel violated his rights under both the federal and state
In discussing the defendant’s Sixth Amendment claim, we pointed out that
“a trial court’s decision whether to allow a defendant to waive a conflict of interest
cannot be made after trial, but instead occurs ‘in the murkier pretrial context when
relationships between parties are seen through a glass, darkly.’ (Wheat, supra, 486
U.S. at p. 162.) The [Wheat] court went on to say that ‘[t]he likelihood and
dimensions of nascent conflicts of interest are notoriously hard to predict’ and are
‘even more difficult to convey by way of explanation to a criminal defendant
untutored in the niceties of legal ethics.’ ” (People v. Jones, supra, 33 Cal.4th at
p. 241.) Thus, given the potential conflict arising between defense counsel’s
representation of the defendant and counsel’s prior representation of a potential
alternative suspect, and in light of the “ ‘substantial latitude’ ” given to trial courts
to eliminate potential conflicts under the Wheat decision, the “discharge did not
violate defendant’s right to counsel under the federal Constitution.” (Id. at
Turning to the defendant’s state constitutional claim, we observed: “The
California Constitution gives a criminal defendant the right to an attorney who
must competently represent the defendant. But, as we have often pointed out, the
state Constitution does not give an indigent defendant the right to select a court-
appointed attorney. . . . [¶] The removal of an indigent defendant’s appointed
counsel . . . poses a greater potential threat to the defendant’s constitutional right
to counsel than does the refusal to appoint an attorney requested by the defendant,
because the removal interferes with an attorney-client relationship that has already
been established. But when, as here, a trial court removes a defense attorney
because of a potential conflict of interest, the court is seeking to protect the
defendant’s right to competent counsel. In such circumstances, there is no
violation of the right to counsel guaranteed by article I, section 15 of the state
Constitution, notwithstanding the defendant’s willingness to waive the potential
conflict.” (People v. Jones, supra, 33 Cal.4th at pp. 244-245.)
Similarly, in this case, the trial court’s removal of defense counsel where
there was no dispute as to the existence of a potential conflict should Smith testify
did not violate defendant’s constitutional rights. Contrary to defendant’s assertion,
the record reveals that the court and the parties explored alternatives that would
have permitted defense counsel to continue to represent defendant, but none was
satisfactory. Additionally, nothing in the record supports defendant’s claim that
the prosecution engineered the conflict by putting Smith’s name on the witness list
with no intention of calling him. The prosecutor acknowledged that Smith might
not be called. This is simply an example of the difficulties of sorting through
potential conflicts of interest in the murk of pretrial “ ‘when relationships between
parties are seen through a glass, darkly.’ ” (People v. Jones, supra, 33 Cal.4th at
p. 241.) There is nothing on the record to support any allegation of misconduct by
the prosecutor and no amount of invective by defendant can compensate for that
deficiency. The trial court did not violate defendant’s right to counsel in this case.
Nor did the trial court abuse its considerable discretion in denying
defendant’s motion under Evidence Code section 352 to exclude Smith’s
testimony. The prosecution’s case was based on circumstantial evidence and
defendant’s admissions. The trial court did not err in declining to exclude
evidence of defendant’s admission to Smith. Moreover, we agree with the state
that there is no authority for the proposition that Evidence Code section 352
should be used to exclude prosecution evidence to avoid a conflict of interest
between a defendant and his attorney.
6. Application of Proposition 115 to Defendant’s Case
In June 1990, Proposition 115 was enacted into law by the electorate.
Among its provisions was a provision calling for reciprocal discovery. (Tapia v.
Superior Court (1991) 53 Cal.3d 282, 299.) In September 1990, the district
attorney, in reliance on this provision, filed a motion seeking discovery from the
defense. At the hearing on the motion, the trial court addressed defendant’s claims
that applying Proposition 115’s reciprocal discovery provision would violate
principles governing retroactivity as well as the ex post facto prohibition. The trial
court acknowledged that “this issue has yet to be ruled on by any appellate court,”
but stated it was “simply not convinced enough that the appellate court” would
rule in the prosecution’s favor on these issues. It therefore denied the motion.
In April 1991, in Tapia v. Superior Court, supra, 53 Cal.3d 299, we stated
that application of the reciprocal discovery provision to evidence obtained by the
defense after the passage of Proposition 115 did not constitute retroactive
application of the statute. Apparently on the heels of our decision in Tapia, the
district attorney renewed his motion for discovery. The trial court granted the
motion as to any defense evidence generated after June 1990.
Defendant now argues that the trial court’s reversal of its earlier ruling
violated his “due process rights under the state and federal [C]onstitutions,
because he justifiably relied on the court’s previous order and long-settled
principles of law in forming his trial strategy.” Not so. Any such reliance on the
trial court’s September ruling would not have been justifiable in light of the
fundamental change in law regarding reciprocal discovery effected by Proposition
115, and the trial court’s own recognition that application of that change in the law
to pending cases was in flux. Moreover, longstanding principles of law relevant to
the applicability of procedural changes to pending cases should have alerted
defendant to the distinct possibility that Proposition 115 would apply to his case.
Finally, none of the cases he cites in support of his claim is apposite.
At the time of the district attorney’s motion in September 1990, Proposition
115 had added article I, section 30, subdivision (c), to the California Constitution,
“providing that ‘discovery in criminal cases shall be reciprocal in nature, as
prescribed by the Legislature or by the people through the initiative process.’ ”
(Izazaga v. Superior Court (1991) 54 Cal.3d 356, 371.) As we noted in Izazaga,
the “manifest intent behind the measure was to reopen the two-way street of
reciprocal discovery. The preamble to Proposition 115 states that ‘comprehensive
reforms are needed to restore balance and fairness to our criminal justice system.’
(Prop. 115, § 1(a), italics added.)” (Id. at p. 372.) Accordingly, defendant, like all
other criminal defendants in the state, was on notice that the electorate had
wrought a fundamental change in the law regarding discovery in criminal cases.
Defendant was also on notice that the related question of whether this
change applied to pending cases was unsettled. As we observed in Tapia, “both
the text of Proposition 115 and the related ballot arguments [were] entirely silent
on the question of retrospectivity.” (Tapia v. Superior Court, supra, 53 Cal.3d at
p. 287.) While ordinarily such silence gives rise to the presumption that a new
statute is intended to apply prospectively only, Proposition 115 contained
provisions that governed the conduct of trials, rather than the definition of,
punishment for, or defenses to crimes. As to such procedural provisions, the
general rule is that they apply to trials that have not yet taken place because
“[e]ven though applied to the prosecution of a crime committed before the law’s
effective date, a law addressing the conduct of trials still addresses conduct in the
future.” (Id. at p. 288.) Thus, in Tapia, as noted above, we concluded that the
reciprocal discovery provision of Proposition 115 applied to cases that had not yet
come to trial.
These principles were cited by the district attorney in his September 1990
motion to compel discovery. Indeed, he incorporated as an exhibit into his motion
the Attorney General’s return in Tapia, which was then pending before this court.
Thus, as the trial court acknowledged, the question of the application of reciprocal
discovery to people like defendant had not been settled by the appellate courts,
although at that very moment the issue was pending before us. The trial court’s
ruling represented no more than its best guess about the eventual outcome of this
controversy. Therefore, given the fundamental change in criminal discovery law
effected by Proposition 115, the longstanding principles regarding application of
procedural changes to future trials, the fact that the application of those principles
to the reciprocal discovery provision was a question pending before this court, and
the trial court’s recognition that appellate review had not settled the question,
defendant’s claim that he justifiably relied on the September 1990 order is not
No more persuasive is defendant’s claim to have relied on “long-settled
principles of law” in addition to the trial court’s ruling. Preliminarily, he fails to
identify what these principles might be. If he means the law regarding reciprocal
discovery in criminal cases prior to Proposition 115, that law was abrogated by
passage of the initiative and defendant relied on it at his own peril. If he means
the rule that, unless specified, a new statute is presumed to apply prospectively,
that was the very question that had not been settled at the time of the trial court’s
Finally, none of the cases upon which defendant chiefly relies is apposite to
this case. People v. Mancheno (1982) 32 Cal.3d 855 primarily addressed the
question of the remedy to which a defendant is entitled when a trial court fails to
implement a provision of his or her plea agreement. Both People v. Davis (1994)
7 Cal.4th 797, and People v. King (1993) 5 Cal.4th 9 involved, in relevant part,
whether the overruling of prior precedent that increased the punishment for a
defendant’s crimes after they were committed could be applied to pending cases
without violating the ex post facto clause. We held, in each case, that the new rule
could not be applied to such cases. (People v. Davis, supra, 7 Cal.4th at pp. 811-
812; People v. King, supra, 5 Cal.4th at p. 80.) But the reciprocal discovery rule,
as we stated in Tapia, is a procedural not a substantive change and thus does not
implicate such ex post facto concerns. (Tapia v. Superior Court, supra, 53 Cal.3d
at pp. 297-299.) Finally, in both People v. Scott (1994) 9 Cal.4th 331 and People
v. Welch (1994) 5 Cal.4th 228, we declined to apply new rules requiring timely
objections at sentencing hearings as a prerequisite to raising certain issues on
appeal — a challenge to a probation condition as unrelated to defendant’s offense,
the failure of the court to articulate its discretionary sentencing choices — to cases
in which the sentencing hearings had occurred prior to the finality of our
decisions. We did this not as a matter of due process “but to ensure the equitable
and orderly administration of law.” (People v. Scott, supra, 9 Cal.4th at p. 357.)
None of these decisions supports defendant’s claim that application of reciprocal
discovery to his case violated his due process rights.
We conclude that defendant’s claim is without merit.14
14 Our conclusion makes it unnecessary to address defendant’s further claim that
the alleged due process violation requires reversal per se. We do note, however,
that the decision he cites in support of this proposition, Coleman v. McCormick
(9th Cir. 1989) 874 F.2d 1280, is inapposite. In Coleman, the defendant was tried
and sentenced to death under a statute — later held unconstitutional — that
required the imposition of the death penalty on defendants convicted of aggravated
kidnapping without any consideration of mitigating factors. A new death penalty
law was enacted, permitting consideration of aggravating and mitigating factors,
(footnote continued on next page)
B. Guilt Phase Issues
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously admitted certain
prosecution evidence while erroneously excluding certain defense evidence. We
begin with a review of generally applicable principles pertaining to the admission
and exclusion of evidence.
“ ‘ “Only relevant evidence is admissible [citations], and all relevant
evidence is admissible unless excluded under the federal or California Constitution
or by statute. [Citations.] Relevant evidence is defined in Evidence Code section
210 as evidence ‘having any tendency in reason to prove or disprove any disputed
fact that is of consequence to the determination of the action.’ The test of
relevance is whether the evidence tends ‘ “logically, naturally, and by reasonable
inference” to establish material facts . . . .’ [Citation.] The trial court has broad
discretion in determining the relevance of evidence . . . .” (People v. Carter
(footnote continued from previous page)
and retroactively applied to the defendant. He received a new sentencing hearing
by the judge who presided over the original trial and who, in again imposing the
death sentence, relied on evidence from the original trial, including defense
evidence. In concluding that this procedure violated due process, the Ninth Circuit
declared: “Coleman was sentenced to death under a statute not in effect at the
time of his trial. The new statute added a sentencing ‘trial’ at which the
sentencing judge could consider any evidence that came in during the guilt phase.
By contrast, the old statute required the death penalty once a defendant was
convicted of aggravated kidnapping. Coleman’s counsel made countless tactical
decisions at trial aimed solely at obtaining Coleman’s acquittal, without even a
hint that evidence in the record would be considered as either mitigating or
aggravating factors.” (Id. at p. 1289.) Here, by contrast, as noted, defendant was
on notice as of June 1990 that the results of the defense’s investigation might be
discoverable by the prosecution. Defendant, unlike the defendant in Coleman,
should be able to demonstrate how his investigation was adversely impacted by
this possibility; he does not.
(2005) 36 Cal.4th 1114, 1166-1167.) Relevant evidence may nonetheless be
excluded under Evidence Code section 352 at the trial court’s discretion if “its
probative value is substantially outweighed by the probability that its admission
will (a) necessitate undue consumption of time or (b) create substantial danger of
undue prejudice, of confusing the issues, or of misleading the jury.” We review
rulings under this section for abuse of discretion. (People v. Ledesma (2006) 39
Cal.4th 641, 701.)
It is also well settled that the erroneous admission or exclusion of evidence
does not require reversal except where the error or errors caused a miscarriage of
justice. (Evid. Code, §§ 353, subd. (b), 354.) “[A] ‘miscarriage of justice’ should
be declared only when the court, ‘after an examination of the entire cause,
including the evidence,’ is of the ‘opinion’ that it is reasonably probable that a
result more favorable to the appealing party would have been reached in the
absence of the error.” (People v. Watson (1956) 46 Cal.2d 818, 836; see People v.
Rains (1999) 75 Cal.App.4th 1165, 1170.) Additionally, a party may not complain
of the erroneous admission of evidence unless “[t]here appears of record an
objection to or a motion to exclude or to strike the evidence that was timely made
and so stated as to make clear the specific ground of the objection or motion . . . .”
(Evid. Code, § 353, subd. (a); but see People v. Partida, supra, 37 Cal.4th at
p. 431 [defendant who objects to admission of evidence at trial, and whose
objection is overruled, may “argue that the asserted error in overruling the trial
objection had the legal consequence of violating due process”].) Moreover, “[a]n
appellate court may not reverse a judgment because of the erroneous exclusion of
evidence unless the ‘substance, purpose, and relevance of the excluded evidence
was made known to the court by the questions asked, an offer of proof, or by any
other means.’ ” (People v. Livaditis (1992) 2 Cal.4th 759, 778; see Evid. Code,
§ 354, subd. (a).)
Bearing these principles in mind we turn to the evidentiary issues raised by
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously admitted evidence of
two hairs, prosecution exhibits 14-A-1 and 16-A-2, because they were neither
relevant nor did the prosecution lay the proper foundation for their admission. He
also contends that the trial court erred by permitting one of the prosecution’s
experts to testify to a probability study, referred to as the Gaudette study.
Interwoven among these specific claims appears to be a general attack on the
admission of the hair evidence on relevance grounds.
Preliminarily, the Attorney General argues that defendant has forfeited
these claims because he failed to object to the admission of any of this evidence at
trial. (People v. Jablonski, supra, 37 Cal.4th at p. 823.) Defendant argues,
however, that the issues are preserved because the trial court overruled his
objections to this evidence at his first trial, which ended in mistrial. In support, he
cites statements by the trial court regarding other objections he made at the first
trial, which the trial court cited as a basis for overruling the same objections at his
second trial. But none of these statements involved the admissibility of the hair
evidence. “While it may not be necessary to renew an objection already overruled
in the same trial [citation], absent a ruling or stipulation that objections and rulings
will be deemed renewed and made in a later trial [citation], the failure to object
bars consideration of the issue on appeal. . . . A defendant may not acquiesce in
the admission of possibly excludable evidence and then claim on appeal that
rulings made in a prior proceeding render objection unnecessary.” (People v.
Clark (1990) 50 Cal.3d 583, 623-624, fn. omitted.) We agree, therefore, that the
claims are forfeited.
Even if his claims were not forfeited, they are without merit. Charles
Morton, one of the prosecution’s experts, testified that the two hairs to which
defendant specifically objects as irrelevant, exhibits No. 14-A-1, a fragment of
pubic hair found on the victim’s sweatshirt, and exhibit No. 16-A-2, a pubic hair
found on the evidence envelope, were consistent with defendant’s hair. Defendant
argues that the prosecution failed to establish these hairs were relevant because it
did not establish “that they were likely to have been placed at the scene of the
crime by the perpetrator.” Not so. Relevant evidence is evidence “having any
tendency in reason to prove or disprove any disputed fact that is of consequence to
the determination of the action.” (Evid. Code, § 210, italics added.) The evidence
need not be dispositive of the disputed fact. (See People v. Geier (2007) 41
Cal.4th 555, 587.) Evidence that hair consistent with defendant’s hair was
recovered from the place where the murder occurred, and from the victim’s
garment, is plainly relevant under the statutory definition and the court did not
abuse its discretion in admitting it. Defendant’s claim that the prosecution failed
to establish how long exhibit No. 14-A-1 had been in the residence goes to the
weight, not the admissibility, of the evidence. Absent a showing of abuse of
discretion, we defer to the trial court’s ruling.
Defendant also argues that exhibit No. 16-A-2 was admitted without a
proper foundation because it was found on the evidence envelope that contained
other hairs gathered at the scene which were identified as consistent with
defendant’s hair. At defendant’s first trial, where he actually raised this objection,
the trial court rejected the lack of foundation claim.
Although the record is not a model of clarity, the prosecution apparently
maintained that the three hairs found under the tape of the evidence envelope,
including exhibit No. 16-A-2, were originally in the envelope containing hairs
collected from the debris of the bathtub where the victim was found. The other
two hairs were consistent with either Naomi or Tammy Holley. The envelope
went first to the Department of Justice and then for examination by the
prosecution’s first expert, Steven O’Clair. The hairs were not beneath the tape
when O’Clair examined them and he examined all the hairs in an area that allowed
for no contamination. The envelope was then sent to one of the defense experts,
who, in turn, sent it to the prosecution’s second expert, Charles Morton. Morton
was the person who saw the hairs beneath the tape. The prosecution established
further that neither O’Clair, who testified at the preliminary hearing, nor anyone
on the prosecution team had opened the envelope during the preliminary hearing,
which apparently occurred before the envelope was sent to the defense expert.
The prosecution argued that it had laid a foundation for the admission of the hair
and that, if the evidence had been mishandled, it had been mishandled by the
defense expert, who examined the evidence between the times that O’Clair and
Morton had examined it. The trial court overruled the objection.
In a chain of custody claim, the proponent of the evidence must
demonstrate to the satisfaction of the trial court “ ‘ “that, taking all the
circumstances into account including the ease or difficulty with which the
particular evidence could have been altered, it is reasonably certain that there was
no alteration.” ’ ” (People v. Catlin, supra, 26 Cal.4th at p. 134.) The trial court’s
ruling on such a claim is reviewed for abuse of discretion. (Ibid.)
Here, the prosecution demonstrated that the hairs in question had
undoubtedly been in the evidence envelope, which contained other hairs gathered
from the bathtub at the Holley residence, rather than being stray hairs from an
unknown source, notwithstanding the fact that the defense expert may have
mishandled the evidence. Accordingly, we find no abuse of discretion.
Defendant also contends that the trial court erroneously allowed Steven
O’Clair, one of the prosecution’s experts, to testify that, according to a study
called, after its author, the Gaudette study, there was only a 1-in-800 probability
that pubic hair identified as consistent with one person could have come from
another person. Defendant did not object to the testimony, forfeiting the claim. In
any event, there was considerable skepticism expressed by the other experts,
including the prosecution’s second expert, Charles Morton, about the validity of
this study. The jury was capable of determining what weight to give this
testimony. Defendant points to statements by the prosecutor emphasizing the
study. It is axiomatic that statements by counsel are not evidence, and the jury
was so instructed. Finally, to the extent that defendant is attacking the admission
of any hair analysis evidence, we reject the argument; the evidence was clearly
relevant and the trial court did not abuse its discretion in so ruling.
b. Defendant’s Parole Status
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously admitted a portion of his
statement to the police in which he noted that he had just been paroled from San
Quentin. The statement was in the context of his expression of disgust toward
child molesters: “I’ve just paroled out of San Quentin. I hate a child molester.
Even if I did go up for statutory rape, you know what, that’s the most sickest
. . . that’s the most lowest thing on this earth that you can do to another human
being.” He maintains that his references to having been paroled and his conviction
for statutory rape (actually it was forcible rape) amounted to impermissible
In overruling defendant’s objection, the trial court concluded that the
evidence was more probative than prejudicial under Evidence Code section 352 in
that it corroborated testimony by Tammy Petrea that defendant had killed April
because he did not want to be reincarcerated, and testimony by David Jurkovich
regarding defendant’s statement that April “wasn’t the first and she won’t be the
last.” The trial court also found that the statement was probative of defendant’s
knowledge of the sexual assault on April, which was known only to the
perpetrators and police.
We need not decide whether the trial court abused its discretion under
Evidence Code section 352 when it admitted this brief mention of defendant’s
parole status and prior imprisonment because, even if the court erred, defendant
could not possibly have been prejudiced. Before allowing the tape of the
interview to be played, the court instructed the jurors on the proper use of the
evidence, warned them that they would hear mention of defendant being on parole,
and admonished them that the statements were not to be considered as evidence of
propensity to commit the crimes at issue in this case. We deem this admonition to
have adequately ensured that the jury would not use these fleeting references as
propensity evidence and thus their admission, even if error, was harmless.
Defendant contends that the admission of three photographs depicting
injuries to April’s genitals were irrelevant or, if relevant, that their probative value
was outweighed by their prejudicial effect. The prosecution introduced these
photographs into evidence in connection with the testimony of Dr. McCann, a
child sexual abuse expert, and Dr. Miller, who performed the autopsy.15
Preliminarily, while defendant indicated prior to trial that he would object
to crime scene and autopsy photographs as cumulative, at trial he failed to object
15 We requested these exhibits from the superior court. The court provided
exhibits 17 and 19 but informed us that exhibit 14 could not be located. However,
all of the victim photographs were attached to the prosecutor’s trial brief seeking
their admission. While the quality of the photocopies is not very good, it is at least
possible to conclude that these photographs, including exhibit 14, were no more
inflammatory or gruesome than exhibits 17 and 19.
to these photographs on any ground. Accordingly, he has forfeited his claim.
(People v. Farnam, supra, 28 Cal.4th at pp. 160-161.)
His contentions also lack merit. It is settled law that “ ‘admission of
photographs of a victim lies within the broad discretion of the trial court when a
claim is made that they are unduly gruesome or inflammatory.’ ” (People v.
Scheid (1997) 16 Cal.4th 1, 18.) We would not disturb the trial court’s decision to
admit the photographs unless “ ‘the probative value of the photographs clearly is
outweighed by their prejudicial effect. ’” (Ibid.) Contrary to defendant’s claim,
the photographs were highly relevant to the prosecution’s case. The photographs
showed the nature and placement of April’s injuries and tended to corroborate the
prosecution’s theory that April was raped and sodomized. Defendant argues that
there was no dispute April was raped. Not so. At trial, neither defendant nor
anyone else admitted raping or sodomizing April, and the prosecution was
therefore required to prove those allegations. The photographs were relevant to
that purpose. Moreover, the photographs assisted the testimony of the
prosecution’s child sexual abuse expert and the testimony of the doctor who
performed the autopsy of April’s body.
Moreover, having examined the exhibits in question, we also reject
defendant’s claim that the nature of the photographs rendered them more
prejudicial than probative. While the photographs are unpleasant because they
depict injuries to a child’s genitalia, they cannot be accurately described as
gruesome.16 Certainly, they would not have invoked the kind of prejudicial effect
16 Defendant also argues that the pictures were especially prejudicial at the
penalty phase. Not so. The prosecution has even more latitude to illustrate the
crime through photographs at the penalty phase than it does at the guilt phase. As
we recently stated, “[s]uch evidence cannot prejudice the defendant as to guilt, and
the brutal circumstances assist the jury in making its normative [citation] penalty
(footnote continued on next page)
that is the particular concern of Evidence Code section 352. (People v. Jablonski,
supra, 37 Cal.4th at p. 805 [“ ‘Evidence is substantially more prejudicial than
probative (see Evid. Code, § 352) if, broadly stated, it poses an intolerable “risk to
the fairness of the proceedings or the reliability of the outcome” ’ ”].)
d. Victoria Lopez’s Testimony
Over defendant’s hearsay objection, the prosecution was permitted to ask
Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr., whether he told Victoria Lopez that he, defendant, and
Steven Brown were at the Holley residence the night April was murdered and that
all three men had had sex with her. Marshall denied having made the statements.
The prosecution then called Victoria Lopez who testified that Marshall had made
these statements to her. Her testimony was admitted over defendant’s hearsay
objection as a prior inconsistent statement by Marshall. (Evid. Code, § 1235.)
On appeal, defendant renews the objection he made below that the
admission of Lopez’s testimony violated his confrontation rights. As he did
below, he relies primarily on People v. Rios (1985) 163 Cal.App.3d 852.
“ ‘The receipt in evidence of a prior inconsistent statement does not violate
the confrontation clauses of the federal and state Constitutions where the declarant
testifies at trial and is subject to cross-examination.’ ” (People v. Williams (1997)
16 Cal.4th 153, 200.) Here, Bobby Joe Marshall testified at trial and “when given
an opportunity to explain or deny [his] statements, . . . denied that he made them.”
(Id. at p. 199.) Thus, this case is distinguishable from the Rios case because there
the two witnesses who were impeached with prior inconsistent statements refused
(footnote continued from previous page)
decision.” (People v. Lewis and Oliver (2006) 39 Cal.4th 970, 1055.) Because we
have determined the photographs at issue here were admissible even at the guilt
phase, they were certainly admissible at the penalty phase.
to testify when called to the witness stand. In finding the admission of their prior
inconsistent statements was error, the reviewing court cited the rule that “ ‘there is
no “testimony” from which an inconsistency with any earlier statement may be
implied when the witness honestly has no recollection of the facts,’ ” and extended
it to a situation “ ‘where a witness gives no testimony and refuses to answer all
questions.’ ” (People v. Rios, supra, 208 Cal.App.3d at p. 962.)
Defendant also asserts — apparently for the first time — that admission of
Marshall’s statement to Lopez violated People v. Aranda (1965) 63 Cal.2d 518
and Bruton v. United States (1968) 391 U.S. 123. Even if this claim is not
forfeited, it is without merit. “Bruton and its progeny provide that if the
prosecutor in a joint trial seeks to admit a nontestifying codefendant’s extrajudicial
statement, either the statement must be redacted to avoid implicating the defendant
or the court must sever the trials.” (People v. Hoyos (2007) 41 Cal.4th 872, 895.)
Bruton is inapplicable here, as Marshall was neither a codefendant nor on trial.
Finally, defendant suggests that Lopez’s testimony runs afoul of Crawford
v. Washington (2004) 541 U.S. 36. “Crawford . . . held that testimonial out-of-
court statements offered against a criminal defendant are rendered inadmissible by
the confrontation clause unless the witness is unavailable at trial and the defendant
has a prior opportunity for cross-examination.” (People v. Geier, supra, 41
Cal.4th at p. 597.) Here, Marshall testified at defendant’s trial and was obviously
available for cross-examination.
e. Exclusion of Defendant’s Bathwater Expert
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously excluded expert
testimony that he claims would have supported his defense that April was
murdered in the early morning of Sunday, December 4 by Steven Brown acting
alone, rather than by defendant and Brown on the night of December 3.
Specifically, defendant proposed to call Dr. Garrison Kost, a civil and structural
engineer, to testify to the “outflow rate of water in the bathtub based on commonly
accepted principles of flow and volume.” The purpose of this testimony was to
make a backward projection as to what time the bathtub had been filled to capacity
to show that April was killed about 1:30 in the morning of December 4, and thus
not by defendant, rather than at 9:30 p.m., the previous night, as suggested by the
testimony of various prosecution witnesses.
Conceding that “we have no precise data in this case, and no precise
measurements,” defense counsel stated that Kost’s testimony would be based on
an estimate given by Detective Johnson regarding the water level. Johnson
testified that, when he saw April at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, there were five inches of
water in the bathtub and, when he removed the rag in the drain at 6:23 p.m., there
were about two or three inches left. The prosecution objected on the grounds that
“Detective Johnson testified that this was just an estimate. It could have been as
little as three inches, and as much as five inches.” The court also pointed out that
another problem with the expert’s assumption regarding the amount of water in the
bathtub was that “there’s an assumption being made here that this tub was actually
filled up to the overflow pipe, which is something else we don’t know, so we’re
left with speculation.” Additionally, the prosecutor pointed out, “there’s no way
to determine whether April’s face was on the drain, which would affect the flow.
[¶] There’s no way of knowing the effect of the removal of the body from the tub
on the rag.” He also pointed out other prosecution witnesses had given other
estimates regarding the amount of water in the tub.
The court concluded that “we’re gonna spend more time on this than it has
probative value,” but nonetheless allowed the defense to put Kost on the stand
outside the presence of the jury. Following Kost’s testimony, however, the trial
court sustained the prosecution’s objection and excluded the evidence because
“there’s just too many variables here, that this is far more likely to prejudice this
case than to be of any probative value, particularly with respect to the issue of the
estimate of the tub’s depth at the two points in time. [¶] You just can’t accurately
establish it, and it just leads to speculation.”
Under Evidence Code section 352, the trial court has wide discretion to
exclude evidence on the grounds that its probative value is substantially
outweighed by the risk of undue delay, prejudice or confusion. (People v. Geier,
supra, 41 Cal.4th at p. 581.) This discretion extends to the admission or exclusion
of expert testimony. (People v. Gardeley (1996) 14 Cal.4th 605, 619.)
“Generally, an expert may render opinion testimony on the basis of facts
given ‘in a hypothetical question that asks the expert to assume their truth.’
[Citation.] Such a hypothetical question must be rooted in facts shown by the
evidence, however. [Citation.]” (People v. Gardeley, supra, 14 Cal.4th at p. 618.)
It is true that “it is not necessary that the question include a statement of all the
evidence in the case. The statement may assume facts within the limits of the
evidence, not unfairly assembled, upon which the opinion of the expert is required,
and considerable latitude must be allowed in the choice of facts as to the basis
upon which to frame a hypothetical question.” (People v. Wilson (1944) 25 Cal.2d
341, 349.) On the other hand, the expert’s opinion may not be based “on
assumptions of fact without evidentiary support [citation], or on speculative or
conjectural factors . . . . [¶] Exclusion of expert opinions that rest on guess,
surmise or conjecture [citation] is an inherent corollary to the foundational
predicate for admission of the expert testimony: will the testimony assist the trier
of fact to evaluate the issues it must decide?” (Jennings v. Palomar Pomerado
Health Systems, Inc. (2003) 114 Cal.App.4th 1108, 1117.)
Kost’s reliance on Detective Johnson’s estimates of the amount of water in
the bathtub was questionable given that Johnson’s testimony was based on
estimates, not measurements, and that other witnesses made other estimates. But
even if Kost could have relied on these estimates, as the trial court and the
prosecutor pointed out, there were a number of variables that could have affected
the outflow as to which there was no evidence at all, e.g., whether the tub had been
filled to the overflow pipe, whether April’s face had blocked or partially blocked
the drain, and the effect of the removal of April’s body. Given these uncertainties,
we cannot say the trial court abused its discretion in excluding Kost’s testimony.17
f. Exclusion of Impeachment Evidence
Defendant contends that the trial court erred when it excluded evidence of
Tammy Petrea’s juvenile adjudication for narcotics use as well as prior testimony
that defendant argues was inconsistent with her trial testimony regarding her
whereabouts on Friday, December 2, the day before April’s murder. The trial
court excluded both bits of proposed impeachment evidence on the ground they
related to collateral matters. Given Petrea’s extensive testimony about her drug
use and prostitution, and the fact that she was impeached with three felony
convictions, the trial court’s ruling was well within its discretion. (People v. Ayala
(2000) 23 Cal.4th 225, 301 [purpose of trial court’s discretion to exclude
impeachment evidence under Evid. Code, § 352 is “ ‘to prevent criminal trials
17 Defendant cites events that occurred at the trial of Steven Brown as further
reason why the trial court erred in excluding Kost’s testimony, but considering
that Brown’s trial took place three years after defendant’s trial, this information
was obviously not before the trial court when it made its ruling, and is irrelevant
for purposes of our review of that ruling. (People v. Carpenter (1997) 15 Cal.4th
312, 408 [“The argument, based on events occurring after this trial, is not
cognizable on appeal. [Citation.] Moreover, a ruling by a different court in a
different trial has no bearing on the correctness of the rulings in this trial”].)
from degenerating into nitpicking wars of attrition over collateral credibility
g. Exclusion of Steven Brown and Related Claim of Instructional
At defendant’s first trial, defense counsel sought to compel the testimony of
Steven Brown, who was then in custody for April’s murder. Brown’s attorney
informed the court that Brown would exercise his Fifth Amendment privilege
against self-incrimination as to any questions. Nonetheless, at defense counsel’s
insistence, outside the presence of the jury, Brown was sworn in and declined to
respond to any questions. Defense counsel argued that defendant had a right to
call Brown so the jury could see his physical size — he was over six feet tall and
weighed over 200 pounds — to rebut prosecution testimony that it would have
taken two people to subdue April Holley. Defense counsel also argued that Brown
did not have a privilege with respect to certain questions about his 1988
incarceration and 1990 release date, and the offense which had led to his 1988
incarceration, or to questions about his sexual assault on Margaret Allen, which
occurred after the Holley murder and bore similarities to it.
The trial court rejected defense counsel’s argument that evidence regarding
the assault on Allen was not privileged because that case was on appeal, and
rejected as irrelevant testimony regarding Brown’s prior arrests, noting also that
whatever point counsel was attempting to make could be done “simply by putting
in the arrest records.” As to Brown’s physical size, the prosecutor pointed out that
the Holley murder had occurred four years previously and there was “no assurance
that Mr. Brown’s physical size as far as his weight and his strength would be the
same; therefore, the probative value of seeing him at this point is minimal.” He
also observed that the defense could make the point about Brown’s size by other
methods. The court agreed “the probative value of this is . . . minimal.” Brown’s
attorney also objected on his client’s behalf to being compelled to appear, noting
that his sister, who was a witness in defendant’s trial, “could testify to his size and
weight.” The court also noted that Brown’s appearance — “in shackles, and in
prison clothes, and unshaven” — could lead the jury to speculate about Brown’s
propensity for being dangerous rather than the issue of his size. The court denied
the defense motion.
Subsequently, the defense asked the trial court to instruct the jury that it
was prevented from calling Brown because of his assertion of the privilege.
Initially, the court was inclined to do so, but denied the request based on the
prosecution’s argument that such instruction was precluded by Evidence Code
At this second trial, defendant renewed his motion to compel Brown’s
testimony based on the reasons presented at his first trial. Defense counsel
acknowledged that he had been informed by Brown’s attorney that he would once
again be asserting the privilege against self-incrimination. However, he argued
that Brown’s size was particularly relevant because of Roger Rummerfield’s
testimony that Brown and defendant were about the same height. He also
suggested that Brown be dressed in civilian clothing to allay concerns about his
appearance. The prosecutor noted that he had stipulated to Brown’s weight and
height and that at the previous trial the defense had been allowed to put into
evidence a “full body photograph.” The court denied the motion based on
representations that Brown would again invoke the privilege.
Defendant contends the trial court erred by failing to compel Brown to
assert his privilege before the jury; by precluding Brown from answering
questions regarding his 1988-1990 custody and subsequent release, and about the
Margaret Allen case; and by failing to compel Brown to appear before the jury so
it could assess his physical dimensions to rebut prosecution testimony that a single
person could not have subdued April. Finally, he argues the trial court erred in
failing to instruct the jury that Brown’s assertion of the privilege prevented the
defense from calling him.
We reject these claims. As to defendant’s first claim, we have observed:
“Allowing a witness to be put on the stand to have the witness exercise the
privilege before the jury would only invite the jury to make an improper inference.
[Citations.] Therefore, ‘it is the better practice for the court to require the exercise
of the privilege out of the presence of the jury.’ [Citation.] We have
‘commend[ed]’ the approach ‘as a means by which to avoid the potentially
prejudicial impact of the witness asserting the privilege before the jury.’
[Citation.]” (People v. Frierson (1991) 53 Cal.3d 730, 743; see People v. Smith
(2007) 40 Cal.4th 483, 516.) The trial court appropriately followed this procedure.
As to defendant’s second point, he fails to demonstrate that the trial court
erred in determining that evidence of his 1988-1990 incarceration was irrelevant
or, if relevant, could not have been established by means other than calling Brown.
Moreover, his claim that the trial court failed in its duty to evaluate the extent of
Brown’s privilege by conducting voir dire ignores the fact that, when given the
opportunity to question Brown, defense counsel declined to do so, thus indicating
acquiescence in the claim of privilege. With respect to the Margaret Allen case, as
Brown had not yet been tried for the Holley murder in which his assault on Allen
would undoubtedly have been relevant, defendant fails to demonstrate that he
could have inquired of Brown in any manner that would not have violated his
We also reject defendant’s claim that Brown should have been called to
allow the jury to assess his physical dimensions. Defendant contends that such
evidence would have been relevant to rebut testimony that one person alone could
not have subdued April. But this was not the testimony; it was that the
circumstances of her drowning — in which her lower extremities did not show
immersion in water — were suggestive of more than one perpetrator. Thus, the
relevance of Brown’s size was, as the court noted, of minimal probative value,
particularly because his stature could be established by other means. We conclude
therefore that the trial court did not err in denying defendant’s request. (See
People v. Mincey (1992) 2 Cal.4th 408, 443.)
Finally, the trial court did not err in declining to instruct the jury that
Brown did not testify because of his assertion of the privilege. Such an instruction
may have invited the jury to infer that Brown had invoked the privilege because he
was guilty of the offense. Such inference is impermissible. (Evid. Code, § 913;
People v. Holloway (2004) 33 Cal.4th 96, 130 [“a person may invoke the privilege
for reasons other than guilt, and ‘[a] defendant’s rights to due process and to
present a defense do not include a right to present to the jury a speculative,
factually unfounded inference’ ”]; People v. Bernal (1967) 254 Cal.App.2d 283,
294 [“the defendant, as opposed to the witness, has no right which he may assert
superior or even equal to that of the witness who exercises the privilege against
self-incrimination . . . . [T]he claim of privilege having no evidentiary value, it
could have no relevance to the question of defendant’s guilt or innocence”].)
2. Prosecutorial Misconduct Claims
a. Prosecutorial Decisions Affecting Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr.
Defendant makes a lengthy, convoluted, and ultimately meritless claim that
accuses the prosecutor of “drop[ping] charges against Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr.,
even though the evidence showed and the prosecutor still believed that Bobby Joe
Marshall was involved in April’s murder, and then knowingly present [sic] the
perjured testimony of Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr. as the truth. Moreover, the
prosecutor hid the fact that Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr. believed the prosecution had
given him immunity in return for his testimony . . . . In his rebuttal argument the
prosecutor also misled the jury about the possibility that the District Attorney’s
Office would charge Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr. with April’s murder at some other
At defendant’s trial, Marshall testified that defendant told him he had killed
April in the early morning hours of Sunday, December 4. This testimony was
consistent with a statement Marshall made to police in March 1991, after Marshall
himself had been charged with the murder. Before being charged, Marshall had
told police he did not know who had killed April. After telling police about
defendant’s admission, the charges against Marshall arising from April’s murder
were dismissed. Marshall obtained a plea bargain for drug charges involving
incidents that occurred after April’s murder, but he was not given immunity for
this testimony against defendant. In his closing argument, the prosecutor
observed, “no one said anything about what’s going to happen to Mr. Marshall in
the future,” as well as telling the jury that Marshall had not been offered
The prosecutor also explained to the jury that he disbelieved Marshall’s
testimony about defendant’s admission as well as Marshall’s alibi testimony,
which was that on the night of the murder he was driving around with Steven
Brown and Joe Mills. He told the jury he had called Marshall as a witness because
Marshall was “the connector, and the common denominator between Steve Brown
and Charlie Richardson. Did we present [Marshall’s] testimony regarding the
defendant’s statements to him in the bedroom because it’s true? No. [Marshall]
talked to Charlie Richardson all right, but it was the next morning . . . when they
were in the bedroom with Steve Brown, Charlie Richardson, and Bob Marshall, Jr.
That’s the import of that testimony.” In other words, the prosecutor suggested that
Marshall was present when April was killed.
Marshall also testified at Steven Brown’s trial, which followed defendant’s
trial. At that trial, Marshall testified on direct examination that he had been
offered immunity “to charges other than murder” if he told police what had
happened at the Holley residence, but had not been “granted immunity in this
case.” On cross-examination, Marshall testified that he believed he had been
offered immunity from charges arising from April’s murder. When, however,
defense counsel prefaced a question with the statement, “After you were granted
immunity,” the prosecutor objected that the question misstated the evidence and
the objection was sustained.
Based on this sequence of events, defendant asserts that the district attorney
made “assurances, if he did not make explicit promises, to encourage [Marshall] to
come up with his story about [defendant] confessing the crime to him.” The claim
that the prosecution suborned perjury is utterly without support in the record and
warrants no further discussion.
In a corollary claim, defendant suggests that the prosecutor dropped charges
against Marshall arising from April’s murder in exchange for Marshall’s false
statement that defendant confessed to him. Again, the assertion is without support
in the record. Moreover, “[p]rosecutors have broad discretion to decide whom to
charge, and for what crime. As we have observed, ‘[i]t is well established, of
course, that a district attorney’s enforcement authority includes the discretion
either to prosecute or to decline to prosecute an individual when there is probable
cause to believe he has committed a crime.’ ” (People v. Lucas (1995) 12 Cal.4th
415, 477.) There may have been many reasons — including the fact that, at the
time of the crime, Marshall was only 15 years old or that there was insufficient
evidence to charge Marshall as an accomplice — that the prosecutor may have
considered in deciding against prosecuting him. On the record before us, it is
impossible to determine what factors led the prosecution to decide against
pursuing charges against Marshall, and certainly there is no basis for any of the
invidious conclusions drawn by defendant. Rather, we assume that the
prosecutor’s decision regarding prosecution of Marshall involved factual and legal
variables committed to the prosecutor’s sound discretion.
Defendant also complains that the trial prosecutor misled the jury by
suggesting that Marshall might yet be charged with crimes arising from April’s
murder. Preliminarily, defendant did not object to these remarks and therefore his
claim is forfeited. (People v. Samayoa (1997) 15 Cal.4th 795, 841.) In any event,
there was no misconduct by the prosecutor. In an argument that acknowledged the
convoluted circumstances involving Marshall, he said that the decision to
prosecute rests on a number of considerations, “and we told you right up front that
the case was dismissed against Bob Marshall, Jr., back in March,” before stating,
truthfully, that “no one said anything about what’s going to happen to [Marshall]
in the future,” and warning the jury against speculation along those lines. We find
no impropriety in this argument.
Nor do we agree with defendant that the prosecutor presented false
testimony to the jury because he disbelieved Marshall’s testimony that defendant
had confessed to him and instead believed that Marshall was present when April
was killed. “ ‘Under well-established principles of due process, the prosecution
cannot present evidence it knows is false and must correct any falsity of which it is
aware in the evidence it presents . . . .’ [Citation.]” (People v. Harrison (2005) 35
Cal.4th 208, 242.) That did not happen here. In this case, the prosecutor was very
clear about his assessment of Marshall’s testimony and why he had presented it
notwithstanding his doubts about Marshall’s veracity. He frankly told the jury he
did not believe Marshall was being truthful when he testified that defendant had
confessed to him — “Did we present Junior’s testimony regarding the defendant’s
statements to him in the bedroom because it’s true? No.”
Rather, he explained that he believed Marshall had spoken to defendant and
Brown about the crime the next morning when the three of them were overheard
by Kim Fleeman talking about getting their stories straight. The prosecutor
explained that the significance of Marshall’s testimony from the prosecutor’s
perspective was that Marshall connected defendant to Brown. Furthermore, while
the prosecutor had his opinion about Marshall’s credibility and shared that opinion
with the jury, he was not present at the events about which Marshall testified and
therefore could not definitively have known whether Marshall was perjuring
himself. Under these circumstances, we reject defendant’s claim that the
prosecutor violated his due process rights by knowingly presenting false evidence.
(See People v. Gordon (1973) 10 Cal.3d 460, 474 [no denial of due process where
prosecutor makes it clear that a prosecution witness’s testimony was of “doubtful
veracity” so that the jury could decide which “of the conflicting versions of the
incidents in question was true,” and prosecutor did not know that testimony was
Defendant contends that the prosecutor violated his due process rights by
presenting factually and legally inconsistent theories at his trial and the trial of
Steven Brown.18 In In re Sakarias (2005) 35 Cal.4th 140, we held “that the
People’s use of irreconcilable theories of guilt or culpability, unjustified by a good
faith justification for the inconsistency, is fundamentally unfair, for it necessarily
creates the potential for — and, where prejudicial, actually achieves — a false
18 The trial court granted defendant’s motion to augment the record in his case
with the record of the Brown trial.
conviction or increased punishment on a false factual basis for one of the
accuseds.” (Id. at pp. 159-160.)
The scenario presented by Sakarias was that in the separate trials of
Sakarias and his codefendant Waidla, the prosecutor “attributed first to Waidla
alone and later to Sakarias alone . . . a series of blows to the victim’s head with the
hatchet blade. These two theories are irreconcilable; that Waidla alone inflicted
each of these wounds, as the prosecutor maintained at his trial, and that Sakarias
alone also did so, as the prosecutor maintained at his trial, is not possible. One or
the other theory (or both, if each man inflicted some but not all of the wounds)
must be false.” (In re Sakarias, supra, 35 Cal.4th at p. 160.) In our analysis of the
prejudicial effect of the misconduct, we observed, “where the probable truth of the
situation can be determined — where we are able to say which of the prosecution
theories was likely true and which false — only the defendant prejudiced by the
false attribution is entitled to relief.” (Id. at p. 164.)
Defendant maintains that in this case, as in Sakarias, the prosecutor argued
in defendant’s case that defendant killed April, and Brown merely assisted, while
at Brown’s trial, evidence was presented that Brown committed the murder and,
furthermore, that this evidence was suppressed by the prosecutor at defendant’s
trial. The claim is without merit.
The prosecution’s position at both defendant’s and Brown’s trials was that
defendant was April’s actual murderer with Brown acting as an aider and abettor.
At defendant’s trial, the prosecutor told the jury in closing argument, “Charles
Richardson is the actual murderer,” and that Brown “was not the actual murderer,
but he was there, and he helped.” To support this theory that Brown was not the
actual murderer, the prosecutor referred to his sexual assault on Margaret Allen in
which he attempted to drown her in her bathtub but stopped his attack after she
resisted him: “If he, Steve Brown, had killed an eleven year old girl before, by
himself, he wouldn’t have stopped with Margaret Allen.”
Similarly, the prosecutor at Brown’s trial argued, “We know that April
Holley was molested, that she was raped, that she was sodomized, and that she
was murdered by drowning in a bathtub. [¶] How do we know that? We know
that Charles Richardson has been convicted of those very crimes. But what else
do we know? We know that Charles Richardson did not and could not have acted
alone in his particular crimes. We know that Charles Richardson and Steven
Brown were accomplices, that they aided and abetted one another in the
commission of these crimes on April Holley.”19
Defendant, nonetheless, maintains that the prosecution at the Brown trial
relied on testimony that was not admitted at defendant’s trial and which depicted
Brown, not defendant, as April’s murderer. He claims further that the prosecutor
at the Brown trial emphasized this evidence to make that point. An examination
of the those passages of the record to which defendant directs us does not support
Defendant points to evidence that Rhonda Schaub, Brown’s girlfriend
around the time of the murder, testified that Brown confessed to her that he had
killed April. What Schaub actually said was that she “asked [Brown] several
times if he had any involvement in her death. And not in the first conversation,
19 Defense counsel’s argument, unchallenged by the prosecution at the Brown
trial, was even more explicit: “And the last thing that you’ve got to consider is
whether or not Charles Richardson acted alone, because the starting place for this
trial is the fact that Charles Richardson is guilty of killing April Holley. You know
that. You heard his confession . . . The question is whether or not he acted alone.”
Plainly, if the Brown jury heard that defendant confessed to killing April, the
prosecution was not hiding the ball from anyone as to the respective roles
defendant and Brown played in the murder.
the first couple conversations, but he was mad at me one morning and it come out
[sic] that he told me that he had killed April, but he would never be caught.” This
testimony followed testimony by other witnesses, among them Kim Fleeman, who
also testified at defendant’s trial, that defendant, Brown and Marshall had been
involved in the murder. In context, then, Schaub’s testimony that Brown said he
“killed” April did not necessarily convey the meaning that defendant ascribes to it
— that Brown personally murdered her. Rather, it can just as well be understood
as meaning that he was involved in the killing along with defendant and possibly
Marshall. Moreover, contrary to defendant’s further claim, the prosecutor did not
emphasize Schaub’s testimony in a manner that suggested Brown, and not
defendant, personally killed April. The prosecutor merely argued that Schaub’s
testimony was evidence of Brown’s participation — “he confessed to her he had
killed April Holley” — but not that Brown personally committed the murder to the
exclusion of defendant. Indeed, in his final remark to the jury, the prosecutor
asked it to find Brown guilty of the murder of April Holley because “Richardson
did not act alone.”
Even less compelling is the testimony of Lynn Farmer, another witness who
defendant maintains was used in the Brown prosecution to establish that Brown
personally killed April. Farmer testified to no such thing. He testified merely that
Brown told him he had done to Margaret Allen the same thing he had done to
April, not kill her, but sodomize her. Farmer testified: “[Brown] said he did the
same thing to the old lady as he did to April. [¶] . . . . [¶] ‘F—d her in the ass.’ ”
There was no question that Brown had done so.20
20 Nor do defendant’s complaints about the exclusion at his trial of testimony by
Farmer, Schaub, or Brown’s testimony in the Margaret Allen trial change this
analysis. Preliminarily, to the extent his challenge is to the trial court’s rulings, it
(footnote continued on next page)
Unlike Sakarias, then, the prosecutor did not argue at defendant’s trial that
defendant alone had killed April and then, inconsistently at Brown’s trial, that
Brown had killed April. The prosecutors in both cases proceeded on the theory
that defendant was the killer and Brown aided and abetted him. Variations in
emphasis where, as here, the underlying theory of the case was consistent at both
trials, does not amount to inconsistent and irreconcilable theories. (In re Sakarias,
supra, 35 Cal.4th at p. 161, fn. 3.)
3. Sufficiency of the Evidence for Lewd Conduct
Defendant contends that insufficient evidence supports his conviction of
lewd and lascivious conduct on a child under the age of 14 (§ 288) where he was
also convicted of rape and sodomy, unless there was evidence of lewd conduct
independent of the evidence supporting the rape and sodomy convictions. As he
acknowledges, we have previously considered and rejected this argument in other
cases. (People v. Benavides (2005) 35 Cal.4th 69, 97 [“Unless one offense is
necessarily included in the other [citation], multiple convictions can be based upon
a single criminal act or an indivisible course of criminal conduct (§ 954). Lewd
(footnote continued from previous page)
appears that he failed to press the court for a ruling as to Farmer’s testimony after
the court tentatively excluded the evidence but reserved final decision. Thus, any
assignment of error is forfeited. He also concedes that there is no record of the
portion of Schaub’s testimony — that Brown told her he killed April — he claims
was erroneously excluded in defendant’s trial. Thus, it is not clear that this is the
evidence that was excluded. Even if was, its exclusion does not support his
assertion that the prosecutor sought to exclude it to argue inconsistently that
defendant, not Brown, killed April. As noted above, Schaub’s testimony provided
evidence that Brown participated in the murder — a point the prosecution in
defendant’s case did not seek to conceal from the jury — but not necessarily that
he was the actual killer. Finally, he does not demonstrate that the trial court’s
exclusion of Brown’s testimony in the Allen case was error.
conduct with a child is not a necessarily included offense of either rape or sodomy,
which require only general intent”]; People v. Siko (1988) 45 Cal.3d 820, 823
[“Thus if a person rapes a 13-year-old child, he can be convicted of both rape and
lewd conduct with a child on the basis of that single act, but he cannot be punished
for both offenses; execution of the sentence for one of the offenses must be
stayed”]; People v. Pearson (1986) 42 Cal.3d 351, 354-363.)
4. Claims of Guilt Phase Instructional Error
a. Erroneous Instruction on Sodomy as a Basis for Felony
Defendant argues, and the Attorney General concedes, that the trial court
erred in instructing the jury that it could convict defendant of first degree murder
based on sodomy. At the time of April’s murder, sodomy was not included in
section 189’s enumeration of felonies supporting a first degree felony-murder
conviction; sodomy was added in June 1990 when the voters approved Proposition
115. In this case, however, the error is harmless in light of the jury’s finding that
the murder was committed in the commission of burglary, rape, and lewd acts.
(People v. Coffman and Marlow (2004) 34 Cal.4th 1, 97-98 [erroneous instruction
on sodomy felony-murder theory harmless because the jury’s verdict on the
robbery and burglary charges and related special circumstance allegations reflect
that the first degree murder conviction was grounded upon other valid legal
theories of felony murder]; accord, People v. Hughes (2002) 27 Cal.4th 287, 368;
see also People v. Marshall (1997) 15 Cal.4th 1, 38 [erroneous instruction on
robbery felony-murder theory harmless where “the jury unanimously found
defendant guilty of first degree murder on the valid theory that the killing occurred
during the attempted commission of a rape”].)
b. References to “Innocence” in CALJIC Nos. 1.01, 2.01, 2.51
Defendant contends that references to “innocence” in the jury instructions
given at his trial (CALJIC Nos. 1.01, 2.01, 2.51 and 2.52) unconstitutionally
shifted the burden of proof by suggesting that defendant was required to prove his
innocence rather than that the prosecution bore the burden to prove him guilty
beyond a reasonable doubt.21 “This court and the Court of Appeal have rejected
this claim in prior decisions [citations], and we do so again here. In light of the
numerous instructions directing the jury to convict only on proof beyond a
reasonable doubt of guilt [e.g., CALJIC Nos. 2.90, 8.71, 8.80], no reasonable
likelihood the jury would have understood the challenged instructions otherwise
exists.” (People v. Snow (2003) 30 Cal.4th 43, 97, fn. omitted; see People v. Frye
(1998) 18 Cal.4th 894, 957-958.)
c. CALJIC No. 2.03
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously instructed the jury with
CALJIC No. 2.03, which permits the jury to consider any willfully false or
deliberately misleading statement made by defendant as a circumstance tending to
show consciousness of guilt provided that the jury first determines that he made
such a statement. Defendant contends the instruction is an improper pinpoint
instruction. We have previously considered and rejected such criticisms of the
instruction. (People v. Bacigalupo (1991) 1 Cal.4th 103, 127-128; People v. Kelly
(1992) 1 Cal.4th 495, 531-532.) We do so again here.
21 Defendant notes that CALJIC Nos. 2.51 and 2.52 were later amended to omit
any reference to innocence.
d. CALJIC Nos. 2.06, 2.52, 2.71.5
i. CALJIC No. 2.06
Defendant contends the trial court violated his due process rights by
instructing the jury with CALJIC No. 2.06 over his objection. That instruction
permitted the jury to consider as a circumstance showing consciousness of guilt
defendant’s suppression of evidence by, for example, witness intimidation or
concealment of evidence, if the jury found that he had engaged in such conduct.
The jury was cautioned, however, that “such conduct is not sufficient by itself to
prove guilt, and its weight and significance, if any, are matters for your
consideration.” Defendant contends there was insufficient evidence to support the
giving of the instruction.
Evidence produced at defendant’s trial indicated that, on the night of the
murder, he removed drawings from the Holley residence that April had done for
him and which identified him by a nickname she had given him. Later, while he
was in flight, he called Bob Marshall, Sr., and asked him to “put up” the pictures.
Defendant maintains that this evidence was insufficient to demonstrate that he
concealed any evidence. We disagree. The evidence suggested that, by removing
the drawings after the crime and then later asking Bob Marshall, Sr., to “put up”
the drawings, defendant was attempting to conceal evidence that he had been a
recent visitor to the Holley residence and had had contact with the victim. This
evidence was sufficient to give the instruction. (People v. Wilson (2005) 36
Cal.4th 309, 330; People v. Jackson, supra, 13 Cal.4th at p. 1225.) In any event,
even if the instruction was given in error, any error was harmless in light of the
evidence of defendant’s guilt.
ii. CALJIC No. 2.52
Defendant contends the trial court violated his due process rights by
instructing the jury with the standard flight instruction, on the ground that the
prosecution failed to prove that his departure from Tulare County the day after
April’s murder constituted flight. Defendant maintains this is a preliminary
foundational fact that must be established before the instruction can be given.
Defendant claims there was evidence that he had planned to leave Tulare for the
San Francisco Bay Area several days before the murder.
The evidentiary basis for the flight instruction requires sufficient, not
uncontradicted, evidence. (People v. Cannady (1972) 8 Cal.3d 379, 391.)
Moreover, section 1127c “makes mandatory the giving of an instruction on flight
where evidence of a defendant’s flight is relied upon as tending to show guilt, and
the giving of such an instruction in appropriate cases repeatedly has been
approved.” (Cannady, at p. 391, fn. omitted.) Finally, the instruction applied only
if the jurors found flight had been shown; if they did not so find here, they would
have disregarded the flight instruction as they were also instructed. (CALJIC No.
17.31; People v. Jackson, supra, 13 Cal.4th 1164, 1225; People v. Lamer (2003)
110 Cal.App.4th 1463, 1472.)
iii. CALJIC No. 2.71.5
Defendant contends that the trial court violated his due process rights when
it gave CALJIC No. 2.71.5, the standard instruction on adoptive admissions. That
instruction permits the jury to assess a defendant’s failure to deny an accusation or
a defendant’s false, evasive, or contradictory statements in the face of an
accusation as an admission of the truth of the accusation under circumstances
where the defendant reasonably had an opportunity to reply and heard and
understood the nature of the accusation. Defendant contends that he did not
remain silent in the face of police questioning but “talked and talked and talked.”
This is true, but, as the trial court essentially found when it overruled his objection
to the instruction, much of that talk was false, evasive and contradictory when
confronted by the accusation that he was a participant in April’s murder. (Cf.
People v. Fauber (1992) 2 Cal.4th 792, 852 [given the inferences “that the
defendant heard and understood [an unavailable witness’s] statements and had the
opportunity to deny them, and that he chose to remain silent except for an evasive
and equivocal statement,” the statements were “properly allowed as adoptive
admissions”].) Moreover, the jury was instructed that it alone was to decide
whether an admission was made and to view with caution evidence of such
admission. Under these circumstances the giving of the instruction was
appropriate and did not violate any of defendant’s constitutional rights.
e. CALJIC Nos. 3.00, 3.01, 3.02
Defendant challenges three instructions given by the trial court that defined
principals to a crime as including both the direct perpetrator and aiders and
abettors (CALJIC No. 3.00; Pen. Code, § 31), further defined aiding and abetting
(CALJIC No. 3.01), and set forth the natural and probable consequences doctrine
(CALJIC No. 3.02).
Defendant first maintains that the natural and probable consequences
doctrine as reflected in CALJIC No. 3.02 unconstitutionally imposes criminal
liability based on a negligence standard. Not so. “[W]e reject the premise of
[defendant’s] argument that the application of the natural and probable
consequences doctrine in capital cases unconstitutionally predicates murder
liability on mere negligence. Liability as an aider and abettor requires knowledge
that the perpetrator intends to commit a criminal act together with the intent to
encourage or facilitate such act; in a case in which an offense that the perpetrator
actually commits is different from the originally intended crime, the natural and
probable consequences doctrine limits liability to those offenses that are
reasonably foreseeable consequences of the act originally aided and abetted.”
(People v. Coffman and Marlow, supra, 34 Cal.4th at p. 108.)
Similarly, we have previously rejected the argument, advanced by
defendant here, that the natural and probable consequences doctrine
unconstitutionally presumes malice on the part of the aider and abettor. (People v.
Garrison (1989) 47 Cal.3d 746, 777-778; People v. Bunyard (1988) 45 Cal.3d
1189, 1231-1232; see also People v. Culuko (2000) 78 Cal.App.4th 307, 322
[“The [California] Supreme Court has repeatedly rejected the contention that an
instruction on the natural and probable consequences doctrine is erroneous
because it permits an aider and abettor to be found guilty of murder without
Finally, in a lengthy and convoluted argument, defendant appears to
contend that the natural and probable consequences instruction was deficient
because it did not inform the jury that defendant could not be convicted based on
the natural and probable consequences doctrine unless he recognized that murder
was the natural and probable consequence of the target offenses. First, we reject
any challenge to the adequacy of CALJIC No. 3.02’s explication of the natural and
probable consequences doctrine. Second, defendant’s reliance on People v. Prieto
(2003) 30 Cal.4th 226, a case in which the trial court failed to identify and define
the target offenses (id. at p. 252) is inapposite as that error did not occur here.
Third, to the extent defendant’s argument is the same argument advanced in
People v. Coffman and Marlow, supra, 34 Cal.4th 1, we reject it for the same
reasons given there: “To the extent [defendant] contends that imposition of
liability for murder on an aider and abettor under this doctrine violates due process
by substituting a presumption for, or otherwise excusing, proof of the required
mental state, [he] is mistaken. Notably, the jury here was also instructed with
CALJIC No. 3.01, advising that an aider and abettor must act with the intent of
committing, encouraging or facilitating the commission of the target crime, as well
as CALJIC No. 8.81.17, which required, for a true finding on the special
circumstance allegations, that defendant had the specific intent to kill the victim.
These concepts fully informed the jury of applicable principles of vicarious
liability in this context.” (Id. at p. 107.)
f. CALJIC No. 3.03
Without objection by defendant, the trial court instructed the jury with
CALJIC No. 3.03 as follows: “One who has aided and abetted the commission of
a crime, may end his responsibility by notifying the other party or parties of whom
he had knowledge of his intention to withdraw from the commission of the crime
and by doing everything in his power to prevent its commission.”22 Defendant
asserts, without any citation to authority, that this instruction “imposes an
unreasonable burden on the person desiring to withdraw from the criminal
activity.” The instruction is a correct statement of the law. (People v. Norton
(1958) 161 Cal.App.2d 399, 403.) Insofar as defendant contends that it should
have been modified, his failure to seek such modification forfeits the claim.
(People v. Guerra (2006) 37 Cal.4th 1067, 1134 [while the court may review
unobjected-to instruction that allegedly implicates defendant’s substantial rights,
claim that instruction, correct in law, should have been modified “is not
cognizable, however, because defendant was obligated to request clarification and
failed to do so”].)
22 Defendant excuses his failure to object to this and other instructions with
section 1259 which states in relevant part: “The appellate court may also review
any instruction given, refused or modified, even though no objection was made
thereto in the lower court, if the substantial rights of the defendant were affected
g. Failure to Give Instructions on Accomplice Testimony;
CALJIC No. 2.27
Defendant contends the trial court erred when it failed to give a series of
instructions regarding accomplice testimony with respect to the testimony of
Bobby Joe Marshall, Jr. He maintains that the evidence established Marshall was
an accomplice as a matter of law and, therefore, the jury should have been
instructed with CALJIC Nos. 3.10 (definition of accomplice), 3.11 (requiring
corroboration of accomplice testimony), 3.12 (defining the quantum of evidence
sufficient to corroborate accomplice testimony), 3.13 (precluding the
corroboration by one accomplice of another accomplice’s testimony), 3.14
(criminal intent necessary to make one an accomplice), 3.18 (accomplice’s
testimony should be viewed with distrust), and 3.19 (defendant had burden to
prove by preponderance that witness was an accomplice).
We reject defendant’s claim that the evidence established Marshall was an
accomplice as a matter of law. Section 1111, which requires corroboration of
accomplice testimony with “such other evidence as shall tend to connect the
defendant with the commission of the offense,” defines an accomplice as “one
who is liable to prosecution for the identical offense charged against the defendant
on trial in the cause in which the testimony of the accomplice is given.” “To be so
chargeable, the witness must be a principal under section 31. That section defines
principals as ‘[a]ll persons concerned in the commission of a crime, whether . . .
they directly commit the act constituting the offense, or aid and abet in its
commission . . . .’ (§ 31.) An aider and abettor is one who acts with both
knowledge of the perpetrator’s criminal purpose and the intent of encouraging or
facilitating commission of the offense. Like a conspirator, an aider and abettor is
guilty not only of the offense he intended to encourage or facilitate, but also of any
reasonably foreseeable offense committed by the perpetrator he aids and abets.”
(People v. Avila (2006) 38 Cal.4th 491, 564.) A person is an accomplice as a
matter of law only if “ ‘there is no dispute as to either the facts or the inferences to
be drawn therefrom.’ [Citation.]” (People v. Hayes (1999) 21 Cal.4th 1211,
The evidence in this case did not establish Marshall was an accomplice in
the sexual assault and murder of April Holley as a matter of law under the
standard articulated above. There was evidence that Marshall admitted to one
witness that he was present at the Holley trailer on the night of the murder and had
engaged in sexual intercourse with April, and that another witness overheard him
talking to defendant and Brown the next morning about getting their stories
straight. On the other hand, Marshall testified at defendant’s trial and denied that
he had been present or had had any sexual contact with April. While it is true, as
defendant notes, that Marshall was at one point charged with April’s murder, it is
also true that after he told police that defendant had confessed to him, the charges
were dropped. On this record then, it cannot be said that the evidence that
Marshall was an accomplice to the murder was undisputed either in terms of the
facts or the inferences to be drawn therefrom.
Whether the evidence was sufficient to have required the trial court to give
the accomplice instructions sua sponte presents a closer question. “ ‘ “[W]henever
the testimony given upon the trial is sufficient to warrant the conclusion upon the
part of the jury that a witness implicating a defendant was an accomplice,” ’ the
trial court must instruct the jury, sua sponte, to determine whether the witness was
an accomplice.” (People v. Zapien (1993) 4 Cal.4th 929, 982.) As defendant
notes, even the prosecutor disbelieved Marshall’s claim that he had not been
present at the Holley residence the night of the murder and so informed the jury.
Nonetheless, mere “presence at the scene of a crime or failure to prevent its
commission [is not] sufficient to establish aiding and abetting.” (People v.
Stankewitz (1990) 51 Cal.3d 72, 90.) Here, there was no physical evidence to
support the conclusion that Marshall aided and abetted the assault upon and
murder of April Holley, unlike the hair and semen evidence that implicated
defendant and Brown, and neither of Marshall’s statements — the one he made to
Vicky Lopez or the one overheard by Kim Fleeman — incriminated Marshall in
In any event, even assuming error, “[a] trial court’s failure to instruct on
accomplice liability under section 1111 is harmless if there is ‘sufficient
corroborating evidence in the record.’ [Citation.] To corroborate the testimony of
an accomplice the prosecution must present ‘independent evidence,’ that is,
evidence that ‘tends to connect the defendant with the crime charged’ without aid
or assistance from the accomplice’s testimony. [Citation.] Corroborating
evidence is sufficient if it tends to implicate the defendant and thus relates to some
act or fact that is an element of the crime. [Citations.] ‘ “[T]he corroborative
evidence may be slight and entitled to little consideration when standing alone.
[Citation.]’ ” (People v. Avila, supra, 38 Cal.4th at pp. 562-563.)
Here, as our recitation of the evidence in this case makes clear, Marshall’s
testimony was not a pivotal part of the case against defendant and it was amply
corroborated by other evidence of defendant’s guilt. Moreover, Marshall’s
veracity was questioned even by the prosecutor and it was certainly unnecessary to
instruct the jury to view his testimony with distrust. Thus, any error in failing to
give the accomplice testimony instructions was harmless.
In a corollary claim, defendant maintains that the trial court’s failure to give
accomplice instructions rendered erroneous CALJIC No. 2.27, which informed the
jury that the uncorroborated testimony of a single witness is sufficient for proof of
that fact. The instruction also told the jury, however, that it was free to assign
such uncorroborated testimony any weight and should carefully review all
evidence upon which proof of a fact established by uncorroborated testimony
depends. Defendant asserts that this instruction allowed the jury to convict
defendant based on Marshall’s uncorroborated testimony.
As noted above, Marshall was not an accomplice as a matter of law and it is
not even clear the evidence would have supported submitting to the jury the issue
of whether he was an accomplice. In any event, we “do not believe a reasonable
juror would have been so misled” by the instruction (People v. Moore (1988) 47
Cal.3d 63, 87), and based his or her decision solely on the uncorroborated
testimony of Marshall that defendant confessed to him, given that even the
prosecutor who presented the evidence disavowed Marshall’s testimony, and given
the substantial corroborative evidence of defendant’s guilt.
h. CALJIC No. 3.31.5
The jury was instructed with CALJIC No. 3.31 that “[I]n each of the crimes
charged, and the allegations charged in counts one, two, three, four and five of the
Information, there must exist a union, or joint operation, of act or conduct and a
certain specific intent in the mind of the perpetrator. Unless such specific intent
exists the crimes or allegations as to which it relates are not committed.”
Defendant contends the trial court erred by not giving, sua sponte, CALJIC 3.31.5.
That instruction provides in relevant part: “In the crime[s] charged in Count[s]
___, ___ and ___ . . . there must exist a union or joint operation of act or conduct
and a certain mental state in the mind of the perpetrator. Unless this mental state
exists the crime to which it relates is not committed.” The point of defendant’s
argument, insofar as it can be ascertained, is that the failure of the court to have
given this instruction may have left the jury in doubt about the necessity for the
concurrence of act and intent. (See § 20.)
There was no error. CALJIC No. 3.31 informed the jury that the crimes
charged required a union of act and intent “in the mind of the perpetrator,” and
there was no issue raised by the evidence regarding the concurrence of intent and
conduct. In the absence of any factual issue regarding concurrence, there is no
basis upon which to conclude that the jury’s verdict was in any way affected by
the alleged instructional error. (Cf. People v. Cleaves (1991) 229 Cal.App.3d 367,
381 [even assuming trial court erred in failing to instruct on concurrence between
act and general intent, any error was harmless in light of instruction given and
absence of any factual dispute regarding concurrence].)
i. CALJIC No. 4.50
Defendant contends that the trial court erroneously rejected his proposed
modification of CALJIC No. 4.50. The proposed modification is set forth in
italics: “The defendant in this case has introduced evidence for the purpose of
showing that he was not present at the time and place of the commission of the
alleged crimes for which he is here on trial. The burden of proof is always on the
prosecution. It never shifts to the defendant. The defendant is not required to
prove beyond a reasonable doubt or even by a preponderance of the evidence that
he was not present at the time and place of the commission of the alleged crimes.
If, after consideration of all the evidence, you have a reasonable doubt that the
defendant was present at the time the crime was committed, you must find him not
guilty.” The instruction, minus the modification, was read to the jury. Defendant
asserts the modification was proper because it tracks language in a federal
instruction that states, “The government has the burden of establishing beyond a
reasonable doubt the defendant’s presence at that time and place.” (9th Cir.
Manual of Model Crim. Jury Instns., Instn. No. 6.1 (1997).) Defendant claims his
modification, like the federal instruction, “simply emphasized the burden of
Defendant’s modification went far beyond emphasis and strayed into the
argumentative. The trial court properly rejected it. (People v. Williams (1988) 45
Cal.3d 1268, 1323-1324 [“It is long settled . . . that a court may properly refuse an
instruction that is argumentative in nature”].) Moreover, to the extent it repeated a
legal principle covered by other instructions relating to reasonable doubt, such as
CALJIC No. 2.90, it was properly rejected as repetitious. (People v. Garceau
(1993) 6 Cal.4th 140, 192-193.)
j. CALJIC No. 4.71
Defendant contends that the trial court violated his due process rights when,
over his objection, it instructed the jury with CALJIC No. 4.71, which stated:
“When, as in this case, it is alleged that the crime charged was committed ‘on or
about’ a certain date, if you find that the crime was committed, it is not necessary
that the proof show that it was committed on that precise date; it is sufficient if the
proof shows that the crime was committed on or about that date.” Defendant
claims that the instruction was improper because the prosecution argued at trial
that April was murdered by defendant on the night of December 3, sometime
between 9:00 and 10:00 p.m. and he provided an alibi for this timeframe.
“The comment to CALJIC No. 4.71 states in pertinent part: ‘This
instruction is improper if the People’s evidence fixes the commission of the
offense at a particular time to the exclusion of any other time and the defendant
has presented evidence of an alibi as to that particular time. . . .’ This comment
accurately recognizes the rule as developed by the courts.” (People v. Jones
(1973) 9 Cal.3d 546, 557.) “Ordinarily, the People need not plead the exact time
of commission of an alleged offense. (Pen. Code, § 955.) However, if the defense
is alibi . . . the exact time of commission becomes critically relevant to the
maintenance of the defense. An instruction which deflects the jury’s attention
from temporal detail may unconstitutionally impede the defense.” (People v.
Barney (1983) 143 Cal.App.3d 490, 497.)
At trial, the prosecutor argued that the instruction was proper because the
prosecution had not made an irrevocable choice regarding the timing of the murder
and that he should be free to argue that the murder occurred on the evening of
December 3 or the early morning of December 4. After initially indicating it
would not give the instruction because of a defense objection, the trial court
decided to give the instruction. Although the prosecution reserved the right to
argue the murder occurred in the early morning hours of December 4, in fact the
prosecutor argued that the murder occurred between 9:00 and 10:00 p.m. on
December 3 based on evidence that April was heard screaming by three different
people. Therefore, it appears that the prosecution made an election regarding the
time of the murder.
On the other hand, as the Attorney General notes, defendant presented, at
best, only a partial alibi for his whereabouts during this time. Defendant left the
Hernandez house around 9:10 p.m. Bob Marshall, Sr., testified that defendant was
back at the Marshall trailer at 10:00 p.m., but Tammy Petrea testified that he
appeared at Jimmy Rousanvall’s bus about 11:00 p.m., while still another
prosecution witness testified that he saw defendant in the vicinity of the Holley
residence at 11:30 p.m. with someone who fit Steven Brown’s description.
Given this state of the evidence — where the prosecution could have
argued that the murder occurred sometime between 9:00 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. of
December 3, if not in the early morning of December 4, and the inability of the
defense to have established a firm alibi for defendant during this timeframe, the
trial court did not err in deciding to give the instruction. It did not deflect the
jury’s attention from a crucial temporal element for which the defendant had an
alibi. The prosecution’s subsequent election during argument of a specific time
period — from 9:00 to 10:00 p.m. — did not render the instruction erroneous so
much as irrelevant.
“In reviewing [a] purportedly erroneous instruction, ‘we inquire “whether
there is a reasonable likelihood that the jury has applied the challenged instruction
in a way” that violates the Constitution.’ [Citation.] In conducting this inquiry,
we are mindful that ‘ “a single instruction to a jury may not be judged in artificial
isolation, but must be viewed in the context of the overall charge.” ’ [Citations.]”
(People v. Frye, supra, 18 Cal.4th at p. 957.) “Additionally, we must assume that
jurors are intelligent persons and capable of understanding and correlating all jury
instructions which are given.” (People v. Mills (1991) 1 Cal.App.4th 898, 918.)
In this case, the jury was additionally instructed: “The purpose of the court’s
instructions is to provide you with the applicable law so that you may arrive at a
just and lawful verdict. Whether some instructions apply will depend upon what
you find to be the facts. Disregard any instruction which applies to facts
determined by you not to exist. Do not conclude that because in instruction has
been given that I am expressing an opinion as to the facts.”
We conclude, therefore, that the instruction was not erroneously given and
that, to the extent it became irrelevant, there is no reasonable likelihood it was
applied in a manner that resulted in a constitutional violation.
C. Penalty Phase Issues
1. Effect of Guilt Phase Errors on Penalty Phase
Defendant contends that the Eighth Amendment requires that his death
sentence be reversed because of the cumulative effect of guilt phase errors unless
the People demonstrate that those errors were harmless beyond a reasonable doubt,
even if these errors are found to be harmless in the context of the guilt phase. No
authority directly supports this claim. Moreover, given that we have either
rejected defendant’s claims of error or found the errors harmless, we conclude
further that “there is no reasonable possibility that these errors, singly or in
combination, affected the jury’s verdict.” (People v. Brown (1988) 46 Cal.3d
2. “Double Counting” of Special Circumstances and Consideration
of Sodomy Special Circumstance
Relying on language in People v. Harris (1984) 36 Cal.3d 36, defendant
argues that the trial court erroneously instructed the jury it could consider the lewd
act special circumstance because the underlying conduct also supported the rape
and sodomy special circumstances. Defendant fails to note, however, that in
People v. Melton (1988) 44 Cal.3d 713, “a majority of the court declined to adopt
this portion of the Harris plurality opinion, and held that it is not improper for a
penalty jury to take into consideration the fact that a murder was committed in the
course of two statutorily enumerated felonies, even if the felonies were part of an
indivisible course of conduct.” (People v. Ramirez (1990) 50 Cal.3d 1158, 1197.)
As we explained in Melton, which involved burglary and robbery special
circumstances, “it is constitutionally legitimate for the state to determine that a
death-eligible murderer is more culpable, and thus more deserving of death, if he
not only robbed the victim but committed an additional and separate felonious act,
burglary, in order to facilitate the robbery and murder.” (People v. Melton, supra,
44 Cal.3d at p. 767; accord, People v. Davis (1995) 10 Cal.4th 463, 545-546 [jury
may consider both kidnapping and sodomy special circumstances as multiple
factors in aggravation even though the crimes were part of a single course of
As we have explained in rejecting defendant’s claim that insufficient
evidence supported his lewd conduct conviction, lewd conduct is a separate
offense from either rape or sodomy and therefore the jury could consider all three
special circumstances under section 190.3, factor (a), which authorizes the jury, in
determining the penalty, to consider, inter alia, “the existence of any special
circumstances found to be true pursuant to Section 190.1.” (Ante, p. 69.)
In a related argument, defendant contends that the trial court’s error in
instructing the jury on felony murder based on sodomy should have precluded the
jury’s consideration of the sodomy special circumstance. As the Attorney General
observes, however, while sodomy was not an offense enumerated in the felony
murder statute in 1988, it was among the offenses listed in the special
circumstance statute in 1988. Therefore, the jury properly considered it at the
penalty phase. (§ 190.3, factor (a).) Defendant’s claim that the trial court’s
“erroneous instruction on felony murder could have influenced the jury’s true
finding on the sodomy special circumstance allegation” is sheer speculation.
a. Testimony of Michael M.
Section 190.3 authorizes the admission of evidence, as a factor in
aggravation, regarding “the presence or absence of other criminal activity by the
defendant which involved the use or attempted use of force or violence or which
involved the express or implied threat to use force or violence . . . .” (See also
§ 190.3, factor (b).) Under this rubric, the prosecution presented the testimony of
Michael M., who had been an inmate with defendant in the Alameda County jail,
that defendant, after learning M. had been convicted of rape, forced M. to orally
copulate him and then subsequently sexually assaulted him 10 to 20 times. Over a
defense objection, M. also testified that defendant was the “head white
representative of the barracks” and in that capacity he told M. he would have to
take care of defendant’s friends; M. did perform sex acts on other inmates for
defendant. In admitting this testimony, the trial court agreed with the prosecution
that it was admissible as evidence that defendant aided and abetted Steven Brown
in the sexual assault on April Holley and that it was also relevant in light of
evidence that defendant had participated in the gang rape of Gina I.
Defendant advances a number of challenges to the trial court’s admission of
this evidence. None has merit.
Defendant first contends that the admission of evidence that defendant was
“head white representative” was error in light of Dawson v. Delaware (1992) 503
U.S. 159.) In Dawson, the Supreme Court held that admission into evidence of the
defendant’s membership in a White supremacist gang at the penalty phase of his
murder trial violated the First and Fourteenth Amendments because the evidence
was irrelevant to any issue in the proceeding. (Dawson, at pp. 165-169.) In this
case, however, the trial court concluded that defendant’s leadership role in the
unnamed “White” group was relevant — not to demonstrate that defendant was a
racist — but to explain his influence over other inmates who also sexually
assaulted M. at defendant’s instigation and with his encouragement. This, in turn,
was relevant to defendant’s participation as an aider and abettor in group sexual
assaults. We conclude that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting
Defendant also argues, in essence, that insufficient evidence supported the
uncharged criminal activity because it rested on M.’s testimony alone. Not so. It
is well settled that, under the prevailing standard of review for a sufficiency claim,
we defer to the trier of fact’s evaluation of credibility. (People v. Snow, supra, 30
Cal.4th at p. 66.) Moreover, the testimony of a single witness is sufficient for the
proof of any fact. (See People v. Rincon-Pineda (1975) 14 Cal.3d 864, 884-885.)
Defendant provides us with no reason to depart from these principles.
Next, defendant maintains that the statute of limitations had run on
defendant’s sexual assault of M. and should have precluded the admission of M.’s
testimony. We have repeatedly rejected this claim. (People v. Carpenter (1999)
21 Cal.4th 1016, 1061 [“The court did not err in admitting evidence of crimes for
which charges were never brought or were dismissed as part of plea bargains, and
on which the statute of limitations had expired”]; People v. Medina (1995) 11
Cal.4th 694, 772 [“neither remoteness nor the expiration of the statutory
limitations period bars admission of a defendant’s prior unadjudicated criminal
activity for purposes of section 190.3, factor (b)”].) We do again here.
We have also repeatedly rejected, and again reject, defendant’s final claim
that section 190.3 violates due process by allowing the penalty phase jury to
consider unadjudicated criminal activity. (People v. Bolin, supra, 18 Cal.4th at p.
335; People v. Balderas, supra, 41 Cal.3d at pp. 204-205.)
b. Evidence of Defendant’s Abuse of a Child
As previously noted, the prosecution presented evidence that defendant
injured the genitals of Richard O., the eight-month-old son of his then girlfriend,
which required that the child be hospitalized, and then denied he had done so,
saying he loved the child as if the child were his own, and was not a child abuser.
Defendant was convicted of misdemeanor battery as a result of this incident.
Defendant claims that it was error for the trial court to have admitted the
facts underlying the misdemeanor conviction. As he concedes, we have rejected
similar arguments that admission of violent conduct underlying a conviction
violates any federal constitutional right. “When dealing with violent conduct it is
not the fact of conviction which is probative in the penalty phase, but rather the
conduct of the defendant which gave rise to the offense. . . . [T]he convictions
here involved violent conduct and were thus admissible pursuant to subdivision (b)
of section 190.3, which permits the introduction of all evidence of violent crimes
and does not require a conviction.” (People v. Gates (1987) 43 Cal.3d 1168, 1203;
see People v. Monterroso (2004) 34 Cal.4th 743, 774 [rejecting claim that
evidence of circumstances underlying battery and vandalism convictions violated
double jeopardy prohibition].) We adhere to the conclusion of our prior cases.
Defendant claims that the prosecutor misstated his burden of proof with
respect to defendant’s prior conviction by informing the jury he had no burden to
prove defendant made the statements attributed to him. We have examined the
passage in the record cited by defendant and in it the prosecutor makes no such
statement; he simply argues that defendant lied when he told an investigator that
he had not injured the child. This statement was no more than a fair inference
from the evidence that defendant had been convicted of battery upon the infant.
Defendant also asserts that the trial court misstated the burden of proof in its
instructions, but the instruction the court gave — that the prosecution was required
to prove prior convictions beyond a reasonable doubt — was entirely correct.
Defendant neither objected to this instruction nor sought clarification.
c. Exclusion of Results of Defendant’s Polygraph Test
At trial, defendant filed a motion to declare unconstitutional Evidence Code
section 351.1, which generally bans the admission of polygraph test results in
criminal proceedings. Defendant argued that such test results should be “admitted
under the more permissive evidentiary standards of a penalty trial.” As a
preliminary matter, he stated his intention to call Edward I. Gelb, “a recognized
expert in the administration of polygraph examinations,” to testify that results
were acceptable for purposes of the penalty phase proceedings. The trial court
denied the motion and excluded the results.
On appeal, defendant argues that the court’s ruling violated various
constitutional rights including his right to due process and the right to present a
defense. He seeks to distinguish other capital appeals in which we have affirmed
the exclusion of polygraph results on the ground that, in those cases, an offer of
proof of the scientific reliability of the procedure had not been made whereas, in
this case, it was. (E.g., People v. Burgener (2003) 29 Cal.4th 833, 870-871;
People v. Koontz (2002) 27 Cal.4th 1041, 1090; People v. Ayala, supra, 23 Cal.4th
at p. 264; People v. Price (1991) 1 Cal.4th 324, 419.)
However, in People v. Wilkinson (2004) 33 Cal.4th 821, a case in which the
defendant had made an offer of proof regarding the reliability of polygraph
examinations, we nonetheless squarely held that the categorical exclusion of the
results of such examinations did not violate the federal Constitution. (Wilkinson,
at p. 850; see also People v. Maury (2003) 30 Cal.4th 342, 413-414 [exclusion of
polygraph evidence at guilt phase did not violate defendant’s constitutional right
to present a defense].)
As we observed in Wilkinson, a seven-member majority of the United
States Supreme Court in United States v. Scheffer (1998) 523 U.S. 303 upheld a
per se exclusion of polygraph evidence in the Military Rules of Evidence. (People
v. Wilkinson, supra, 33 Cal.4th at p. 849.) We observed “that in light of Scheffer,
‘[e]xcluding such evidence does not violate defendant’s constitutional right to
present a defense.’ [Citation.] Noting that ‘[i]mplicit in the Legislature’s passage
of Evidence Code section 351.1 is the conclusion that “[L]ie detector tests
themselves are not considered reliable enough to have probative value” . . . ,’ and
quoting Scheffer, we concluded that a ‘per se rule excluding polygraph evidence is
a “rational and proportional means of advancing the legitimate interest in barring
unreliable evidence.” [Citation.]’ [Citation.] [¶] We reach the same conclusion
here. Scheffer noted that ‘the scientific community remains extremely polarized
about the reliability of polygraph techniques.’. . . This disagreement in the
scientific community in turn has been reflected ‘in the disagreement among state
and federal courts concerning both the admissibility and the reliability of
polygraph evidence.’ [Citation.]” (Wilkinson, supra, at pp. 849-850.)
Defendant seeks to avoid the impact of Wilkinson because Wilkinson was
not a capital case. As he did in the trial court, defendant argues that laxer rules for
the admission of evidence apply at penalty phase proceedings. Not so. The death
penalty statute does not adopt any new rules of evidence peculiar to itself, but
simply allows the generally applicable rules of evidence to govern. Defendant
confuses the broader range of evidence deemed relevant at the penalty phase —
victim impact evidence, for example — with the technical rules of evidence that
remain in effect during those proceedings. One such rule is embodied in Evidence
Code section 351.1, and it has equal application to noncapital and capital trials and
to both the guilt and penalty phases of the latter. There is no less of an imperative
to prevent unreliable evidence from being admitted at the penalty phase than the
guilt phase of a capital trial. Accordingly, we reject defendant’s claim of error
with respect to exclusion of polygraph evidence.
4. Denial of Motion for Modification of the Death Verdict
Defendant contends the trial court was derelict in its duty under section
190.4, which provides for an automatic motion to modify the death verdict,
because the court “failed to follow the legal requirements” in denying the motion
and “minimized the mitigating factors or ignored them, while at the same time
exaggerating the aggravating factors and giving them undue weight.” These
claims are meritless.
Defendant argues that the trial court violated his rights by its “premature
decision to impose death” as evidenced by a tentative written ruling. Not so.
“The practice of formulating tentative rulings in advance of argument and
reducing those tentative rulings to writing is commonplace and unobjectionable.”
(People v. Medina, supra, 11 Cal.4th at p. 783.) The mere fact the trial court did
so is not evidence that it prejudged the motion or was impervious to defendant’s
As to defendant’s second point, we have carefully examined the trial
court’s statement in connection with its denial of the motion. At the outset, the
trial court plainly stated the legal standard it was required to follow in ruling on
the motion, that is, an independent review of the motion taking into account
evidence of aggravation and mitigation. The trial court then proceeded to do so, at
some length. “Defendant disagrees in many ways with the court’s view of the
evidence — particularly the weight it gave his evidence in mitigation. But
defendant’s view of the evidence is not the only permissible one. Although the
court must consider all proffered mitigating evidence, as this court did, it need not
find that any particular evidence is in fact mitigating under the circumstances.”
(People v. Steele, supra, 27 Cal.4th at pp. 1267-1268.) Our review of the court’s
ruling leads us to conclude that it carefully and conscientiously performed its duty
under section 190.4.
Defendant argues that California’s failure to conduct intercase
proportionality review of death sentences violates the Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, and
Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. “ ‘Neither the federal
nor the state Constitution requires intercase proportionality review’ [citation] and
we have consistently rejected this argument. [Citations.]” (People v. Geier,
supra, 41 Cal.4th at p. 618.)
6. Claims of Instructional Error
a. CALJIC No. 8.87
Defendant maintains that CALJIC No. 8.87, given here, was flawed
because it told the jury that the uncharged crime of forcible oral copulation on
Michael M. involved the use of force or violence, or threat thereof, rather than
allowing the jury to decide whether force or violence were involved. He claims
that this amounted to a directed verdict on the issue. Not so. Forcible oral
copulation is, by definition, a crime involving the use of force or violence.
However, the jury could not consider it for purposes of aggravation unless and
until the prosecution proved beyond a reasonable doubt that defendant committed
the offense. (People v. Robertson (1982) 33 Cal.3d 21, 53-54.) Having so found,
it would necessarily have found the force or violence element.
b. CALJIC No. 8.85
Defendant contends that CALJIC No. 8.85, given here, was flawed because
it informed the jury that, in determining the sentence, it could consider whether the
offense was committed while defendant was under the influence of “extreme
mental or emotional disturbance.” Defendant argues that the modifier “extreme”
was an unconstitutional limitation. We have previously and repeatedly rejected
this claim. (People v. Brown, supra, 33 Cal.4th at p. 402; People v. Ghent, supra,
43 Cal.3d at p. 776.)
c. Defense Instruction on Mitigating Factors
Defendant contends the trial court erroneously denied his requested
instruction which set forth 11 “factors” the jury could consider in mitigation,
including for example, “Whether the defendant’s childhood psychological growth
and development affected his adult psychology and personality,” “Whether the
defendant suffers from a learning disability,” and “Whether the defendant’s
addiction to alcohol and drugs, and its effect upon his behavior, contributed to his
criminal conduct.” The trial court declined to submit this list to the jury because it
encroached upon the jury’s right to determine whether these were factors in
mitigation. Defense counsel responded by withdrawing the list in favor of
retaining the preamble to the list as follows: “Mitigating factors may include any
sympathetic, and compassionate, merciful or other aspect of the defendant’s
background, character, record, or social, psychological, or medical history that the
defendant offers as a basis for a sentence of less than death, whether or not the
factors are related to the offense for which he is on trial.” The trial court agreed to
give this instruction. Additionally, the trial court instructed the jury that the
mitigating factors the jury could consider were not limited to those listed but that it
“could consider any other circumstances relating to the case or to the defendant as
shown by the evidence as reasons for not imposing the death penalty.”
The proffered defense listing of mitigating factors was argumentative and
therefore not appropriate. (People v. Gordon (1990) 50 Cal.3d 1223, 1276.)
Thus, the trial court properly declined to give that part of the instruction.
d. Defense Substitute Instruction for CALJIC No. 8.85
The trial court gave CALJIC No. 8.85, the standard instruction regarding
the section 190.3 factors in mitigation and aggravation and declined to give an
alternative instruction submitted by defendant. On appeal, defendant contends this
was error because of deficiencies in the standard instruction, specifically, that the
instruction contains irrelevant factors which, nonetheless, might be used against
defendant by the jury. He also asserts that the court erred by not instructing the
jury that the absence of mitigation was not aggravation. As he concedes, we have
rejected these arguments in the past and do so again. (People v. Geier, supra, 41
Cal.4th at pp. 619-620; People v. Musselwhite (1998) 17 Cal.4th 1216, 1266-1269;
People v. Mitcham (1992) 1 Cal.4th 1027, 1074.)
e. Other Instructional Error Claims
Defendant contends the failure of the trial court to instruct on any burden of
proof with respect to the penalty phase violated his constitutional rights. We have
consistently rejected this claim and do so again here. (People v. Geier, supra, 41
Cal.4th at p. 618; People v. Brown, supra, 33 Cal.4th at p. 401 [“The death penalty
law is not unconstitutional for failing to impose a burden of proof — whether
beyond a reasonable doubt or by a preponderance of the evidence — as to the
existence of aggravating circumstances, the greater weight of aggravating
circumstances over mitigating circumstances, or the appropriateness of a death
sentence”].) We have considered and rejected defendant’s claim that the trial
court was required to instruct the jury on the presumption of a sentence of life
without possibility of parole. (People v. Arias, supra, 13 Cal.4th at p. 190.)
f. Cumulative Effect of Instructional Error
Defendant contends the cumulative effect of these instructional errors
requires reversal. “If none of the claimed errors were individual errors, they
cannot constitute cumulative error that somehow affected the penalty verdict.”
(People v. Beeler (1995) 9 Cal.4th 953, 994.)
7. Challenges to the Death Penalty Statute
Defendant contends the death penalty law is unconstitutional because it
does not require unanimous written findings by the jury regarding aggravating
factors. We have previously and consistently rejected this claim and do so again.
(People v. Geier, supra, 41 Cal.4th at p. 618; People v. Medina, supra, 11 Cal.4th
at p. 782.) We have also repeatedly considered and rejected the claims defendant
raises that (1) the death penalty statute is unconstitutional because it confers too
much discretion on individual prosecutors (People v. Crittenden (1994) 9 Cal.4th
83, 152); (2) fails to meaningfully narrow the class of death eligible offenders or is
otherwise overbroad (People v. Yeoman, supra, 31 Cal.4th at p. 165); (3) is
impermissibly vague (People v. Jenkins (2000) 22 Cal.4th 900, 1050-1053); or
(4) is unconstitutional on moral grounds. (People v. Turner (2004) 34 Cal.4th
Defendant contends that violations of his constitutional rights also violate
international law. However, as the predicate for his claim — that his
constitutional rights were violated — is erroneous, so too, then, is the conclusion
he draws regarding international law. To the extent he challenges the death
penalty itself as violative of international norms, we again reject this claim as we
have done repeatedly and consistently in other cases. (People v. Panah, supra, 35
Cal.4th at pp. 500-501.)
Defendant contends the delay in processing his appeal violates various
constitutional provisions and international law. Not so. “One under judgment of
death does not suffer cruel and unusual punishment by the inherent delays in
resolving his appeal. If the appeal results in reversal of the death judgment, he has
suffered no conceivable prejudice, while, if the judgment is affirmed, the delay has
prolonged his life.” (People v. San Nicolas (2004) 34 Cal.4th 614, 677; see
People v. Panah, supra, 35 Cal.4th at p. 500.)
10. Missing Transcripts
Defendant contends his conviction must be reversed because the parties
were unable to reconstruct via a settled statement nine unreported bench
conferences and a proceeding at defendant’s first trial, apparently involving a
continuance. “[D]efendant bears the burden of demonstrating that the appellate
record is not adequate to permit meaningful appellate review. [Citation.] He has
not done so.” (People v. Arias, supra, 13 Cal.4th at p. 158.)
11. Cumulative Error
Defendant contends the cumulative effect of errors at both phases of his
trial requires reversal. Not so. (People v. Geier, supra, 41 Cal.4th at p. 620.)
12. Incorporation by Reference of Habeas Corpus Petition Claims
Defendant asks that we deem incorporated by reference any argument he
has raised in his petition for habeas corpus but which we may decide in reviewing
that petition should have been raised on appeal. We decline to do so. The rules of
court do not permit such incorporation. (See Soukup v. Law Offices of Herbert
Hafif (2007) 39 Cal.4th 260, 294, fn. 20.) Moreover, “habeas corpus cannot serve
as a substitute for an appeal, and, in the absence of special circumstances
constituting an excuse for failure to employ that remedy, the writ will not lie
where the claimed errors could have been, but were not, raised upon a timely
appeal from a judgment of conviction.” (In re Dixon (1953) 41 Cal.2d 756, 759.)
As part of his sentence, the trial court imposed upon defendant a $10,000
restitution fine pursuant to Government Code section 13967 without, however,
making any findings regarding defendant’s ability to pay. Defendant points out
that, at the time he was sentenced, that section had recently been amended to
condition imposition of such a fine on a defendant’s ability to pay. (See People v.
Saelee (1995) 35 Cal.App.4th 27, 30-31.) That amendment itself was repealed in
1994, but the current statutory scheme in effect allows consideration of ability to
pay. (§ 1202.4.)23 Defendant contends he should have the benefit either of the
1992, amended statute or the current statutory scheme. In People v. Vieira, supra,
35 Cal.4th 264, faced with the same argument we concluded: “Defendant is not
entitled to benefit from the 1992 amendment; it was repealed in 1994. (Stats.
1994, ch. 1106, § 3, [p.] 6547.) . . . Here, the question of restitution should be
considered under the current version of Penal Code section 1202.4, which
provides detailed guidance to the trial court in setting a restitution fine, including
consideration of a defendant’s ability to pay.” (Id. at p. 305.) Therefore, we
remanded the case to the trial court “for reconsideration of the question of a
restitution fine under the currently applicable statute. If the People choose not to
contest the matter on remand, defendant’s restitution shall be reduced to the
statutory minimum.” (Id. at p. 306.) We shall follow that procedure here as well.
23 Government Code section 13967 was repealed in 2003. (Stats. 2003, ch. 230,
The matter is remanded to the trial court for reconsideration of the question
of a restitution fine in the manner set forth above. In all other respects, the
judgment is affirmed.
WE CONCUR: GEORGE, C. J.
See next page for addresses and telephone numbers for counsel who argued in Supreme Court.
Name of Opinion People v. Richardson
Original Appeal XXX
Opinion No. S029588
Date Filed: May 22, 2008
Judge: William Silveira, Jr.
Attorneys for Appellant:
Richard Jay Moller and Karen Kelly, under appointments by the Supreme Court, for Defendant and
Attorneys for Respondent:
Bill Lockyer and Edmund G. Brown, Jr., Attorneys General, Robert R. Anderson, Chief Assistant Attorney
General, Mary Jo Graves, Assistant Attorney General, Louis M. Vasquez, Eric L. Christoffersen, Lloyd G.
Carter and Kathleen A. McKenna, Deputy Attorneys General, for Plaintiff and Respondent.
Counsel who argued in Supreme Court (not intended for publication with opinion):
Richard Jay Moller
So’Hum Law Center
P.O. Box 1669
Redway, CA 95560-1669
Kathleen A. McKenna
Deputy Attorney General
2550 Mariposa Mall, Room 5090
Fresno, CA 93721
Automatic appeal from a judgment of death.
|Date:||Citation:||Docket Number:||Category:||Status:||Cross Referenced Cases:|
|Thu, 05/22/2008||43 Cal.4th 959 original opinion 44 Cal. 4th 385a modification||S029588||Automatic Appeal||closed; remittitur issued|| |
RICHARDSON v. S.C. (PEOPLE) (S127275)
|1||The People (Respondent)|
Represented by Attorney General - Fresno Office
Kathleen McKenna, Deputy Attorney General
2550 Mariposa Mall, Room 5090
|2||Richardson, Charles Keith (Appellant)|
San Quentin State Prison
Represented by Karen A. Kelly
Attorney at Law
P.O. Box 6308
|3||Richardson, Charles Keith (Appellant)|
San Quentin State Prison
Represented by Richard Jay Moller
Attorney at Law
P.O. Box 1669
|May 22 2008||Opinion: Affirmed|
|Oct 7 1992||Judgment of death|
|Nov 3 1992||Filed certified copy of Judgment of Death Rendered|
|Jan 15 1997||Counsel appointment order filed|
Upon request of appellant for appointment of counsel, Richard J. Moller is hereby appointed as lead counsel, and Karen Kelly is appointed as associate counsel, to represent appellant on his automatic appeal now pending in this court, including any related habeas proceedings.
|Jan 16 1997||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 14 1997||Application for Extension of Time filed|
To request Record correction
|Feb 19 1997||Extension of Time application Granted|
To May 2,1997 To request Record correction
|Apr 28 1997||Application for Extension of Time filed|
By Applt to request correction of the Record.
|Apr 29 1997||Extension of Time application Granted|
To Applt To 7-1-97 To request Corr. of Record.
|Jun 24 1997||Application for Extension of Time filed|
By Applt to request correction of the Record.
|Jun 26 1997||Extension of Time application Granted|
To Applt To 9-2-97 To request Corr. of Record.
|Aug 22 1997||Application for Extension of Time filed|
By Applt to request correction of the Record.
|Aug 25 1997||Extension of Time application Granted|
To Applt To 11-3-97 To request Corr. of Record.
|Oct 27 1997||Application for Extension of Time filed|
By Applt to request Record correction
|Oct 29 1997||Extension of Time application Granted|
To January 2,1998 To request Record correction
|Dec 29 1997||Application for Extension of Time filed|
By Applt to request correction of the Record.
|Dec 30 1997||Extension of Time application Granted|
To March 3,1998 To request Record correction
|Mar 2 1998||Application for Extension of Time filed|
By Applt to request correction of Record.
|Mar 6 1998||Extension of Time application Granted|
To Applt To 5-4-98 To request Corr. of Record. no further Extensions of time Are Contemplated.
|Apr 27 1998||Received copy of appellant's record correction motion|
appellant's request to correct, augment, and settle the record, to examine sealed transcripts and sealed records (46 pp.)
|Jul 13 1998||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 26 1998||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 19 1999||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Sep 13 1999||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Dec 14 1999||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jan 13 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jan 24 2000||Motion filed|
Applt's joint motion to withdraw as Atty of Record and be Reappointed as Independent Counsel for the direct Appeal and Habeas Corpus and Clemency.
|Feb 16 2000||Order filed:|
Good cause appearing, the application of appointed lead and associate counsel for permission to withdraw, respectively, as habeas corpus/executive clemency attorney of record and as appellate attorney of record for appellant Charles K. Richardson, filed 1-24-2000, is granted. The order appointing Richard Jay Moller as lead counsel of record for appellant Charles K. Richardson, filed 1-15-97, is hereby vacated with respect to the investigation and/or initiation of state habeas corpus/executive clemency proceedings related to appellant's capital appeal now pending before this court. Mr. Moller shall remain as lead counsel of record for appellant Richardson's capital appeal, and shall continue to be responsible for all appellate duties as specified in Supreme Court Policies Regarding Cases Arising From Judgments of Death, Pollicy 3, standards 1-1 and 2-1. The order appointing Karen Kelly as associate counsel of record for appellant Charles Keith Richardson, filed 1-15-97, is hereby vacated with respect to appellant's pending capital appeal. Ms. Kelly shall remain as counsel of record to represent appellant for the investigation and/or initiation of state habeas corpus/executive clemency proceedings related to the above capital appeal, and, as lead counsel, shall be responsible for all habeas corpus/executive clemency duties as specified in Supreme Court Polices Regarding Cases Arising from Judgments of Death, Policy 3, standards 1-1 and 2-1.
|Mar 2 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Mar 29 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 1 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 24 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 9 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 24 2000||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Karen Kelly.
|Aug 29 2000||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Oct 18 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Oct 20 2000||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Oct 27 2000||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Nov 17 2000||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Dec 15 2000||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Jan 17 2001||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jan 18 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Feb 20 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Mar 15 2001||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Mar 19 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Apr 5 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|May 23 2001||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jun 7 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jun 14 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Jun 14 2001||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 16 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Aug 22 2001||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Oct 9 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Oct 15 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Oct 19 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Nov 13 2001||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Nov 19 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Dec 6 2001||Note:|
The record on appeal was returned to Tulare County, on 12/5/2001, to correct the following: Prepare a master index for the RT (Rule 9 (d)); Submit the origianl certificate signed by the Judge, certifying the record to this court; prepare missing vols. 59 and 60 of the RT.
|Dec 13 2001||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Feb 13 2002||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 13 2002||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 19 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Mar 22 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Apr 17 2002||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Apr 29 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|May 7 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jul 9 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Jul 26 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Aug 14 2002||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Sep 9 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Sep 19 2002||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Sep 19 2002||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Oct 4 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Nov 12 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Dec 26 2002||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Jan 9 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jan 24 2003||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jan 28 2003||Record on appeal filed|
Clerk's transcript 53 volumes (13811 pp.) and reporter's transcript 179 volumes (17418 pp.), including material under seal. Clerk's transcript includes 5461 pp. of juror questionnaires.
|Jan 28 2003||Appellant's opening brief letter sent, due:|
March 10, 2003.
|Feb 19 2003||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 21 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Feb 21 2003||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (1st request)
|Feb 26 2003||Extension of time granted|
to 5/9/2003 to file appellant's opening brief. The court anticipates that after that date, only five further extensions totaling 300 additional days will be granted. Counsel is ordered to inform his or her assisting attorney or entity, if any, and any assisting attorney or entity of any separate counsel of record, of this schedule, and to take all steps necessary to meet it.
|Feb 28 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Apr 9 2003||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Apr 25 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Apr 25 2003||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (2nd request)
|Apr 30 2003||Extension of time granted|
to 7/8/2003 to file appellant's opening brief. The court anticipates that after that date, only four further extensions totaling 240 additional days will be granted. Counsel is ordered to inform his or her assisting attorney or entity, if any, and any assisting attorney or entity of any separate counsel of record, of this schedule, and to take all steps necessary to meet it.
|Jun 18 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jun 25 2003||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (3rd request)
|Jun 25 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Jun 27 2003||Extension of time granted|
to 9/8/2003 to file appellant's opening brief. The court anticipates that after that date, only three further extensions totaling 180 additional days will be granted. Counsel is ordered to inform his or her assisting attorney or entity, if any, and any assisting attorney or entity of any separate counsel of record, of this schedule, and to take all steps necessary to meet it.
|Aug 26 2003||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (4th request)
|Aug 26 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Aug 28 2003||Extension of time granted|
to 11-7-2003 to file AOB. The court anticipates that after that date, only two further extensions totaling 120 additional days will be granted. Counsel is ordered to inform his or her assisting attorney or entity, if any, and any assisting attorney or entity of any separate counsel of record, of this schedule, and to take all steps necessary to meet it.
|Sep 12 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Sep 22 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Oct 24 2003||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (5th request)
|Oct 24 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Oct 28 2003||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Nov 4 2003||Extension of time granted|
to 1/6/2004 to file appellant's opening brief. After that date, only three further extensions totaling about 180 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based uponcounsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by 6/30/2004.
|Nov 12 2003||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Dec 1 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Dec 3 2003||Change of Address filed for:|
habeas corpus counsel Karen Kelly.
|Dec 26 2003||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Dec 26 2003||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (6th request)
|Dec 31 2003||Extension of time granted|
to 3/8/2004. After that date, only two further extensions totaling about 120 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by June 30, 2004
|Jan 27 2004||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Feb 3 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 25 2004||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (7th request)
|Feb 25 2004||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Mar 1 2004||Extension of time granted|
to 5/7/2004 to file appellant's opening brief. After that date, only one further extension totaling about 60 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by 6/30/2004.
|Mar 3 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Mar 24 2004||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Mar 24 2004||Change of contact information filed for:|
attorney Karen Kelly.
|Apr 26 2004||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Apr 26 2004||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's opening brief. (8th request)
|Apr 28 2004||Extension of time granted|
to 6/30/2004 to file appellant's opening brief. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by 6/30/2004. After that date, no further extension will be granted.
|May 6 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 12 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 25 2004||Application to file over-length brief filed|
by appellant to file opening brief. (175,561 word brief submitted under separate cover)
|May 26 2004||Order filed|
Appellant's application for leave to file opening brief in excess of word count limit is granted.
|May 26 2004||Appellant's opening brief filed|
(175,561 words - 622 pages)
|Jun 7 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jun 30 2004||Request for extension of time filed|
to file respondent's brief. (1st request)
|Jul 2 2004||Extension of time granted|
to 8/24/2004 to file respondent's brief.
|Jul 7 2004||Filed:|
Amended proof of service of request for extension of time to file respondent's brief.
|Jul 12 2004||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Aug 5 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 17 2004||Request for extension of time filed|
to file respondent's brief. (2nd request)
|Aug 18 2004||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 23 2004||Note:|
related petition for writ of mandate/prohibition (related to motion for DNA testing) filed this date, no. S127275.
|Aug 23 2004||Filed:|
Appellant's application for permission to file supplemental brief. (1345 word brief submitted under separate cover)
|Aug 25 2004||Order filed|
Appellant's application for permissin to file supplemental brief is granted.
|Aug 25 2004||Filed:|
Appellant's supplemental brief. (1345 words - 5 pp.)
|Aug 25 2004||Extension of time granted|
to 10/25/2004 to file respondent's brief. After that date, only four further extensions totaling about 270 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon Deputy Attorney General Kathleen A. McKenna's representation that she anticipates filing that brief by 5/25/2005.
|Sep 7 2004||Supplemental record/transcript filed|
Reporter's transcript, dated 8/6/2004, re motion for DNA testing. (6 pp.)
|Oct 15 2004||Request for extension of time filed|
to file respondent's brief. (3rd request)
|Oct 19 2004||Extension of time granted|
to 12/22/2004 to file respondent's brief. After that date, only three further extensions totaling about 210 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon Deputy Attorney General Kathleen A. McKenna's representation that she anticipates filing that brief by 5/25/2005.
|Oct 21 2004||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Nov 22 2004||Habeas funds request filed (confidential)|
|Dec 15 2004||Order filed re habeas funds request (confidential)|
|Dec 20 2004||Request for extension of time filed|
to file respondent's brief. (4th request)
|Dec 22 2004||Extension of time granted|
to 2/22/2005 to file respondent's brief. After that date, only two further extensions totaling about 150 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon Deputy Attorney General Kathleen A. McKenna's representation that she anticipates filing that brief by 5/25/2005.
|Feb 9 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Feb 15 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file respondent's brief. (5th request)
|Feb 16 2005||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 22 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 4/25/2005 to file respondent's brief. After that date, only one further extension totaling about 30 additional days will be granted. Extension is graned based upon Deputy Attorney General Kathleen A. McKenna's representation that she anticipates filing that brief by 5/25/2005.
|Feb 23 2005||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Mar 16 2005||Note:|
CHARLES KEITH RICHARDSON v. S.C. TULARE COUNTY, THE PEOPLE - S127275 consolidated with this case pursuant to order filed this date. Return to order to show cause due 4/15/2005.
|Apr 5 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file return to order to show cause. (1st request)
|Apr 15 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 5/16/2005 to file the return to the order to show cause. After that date, no further extension is contemplated. Extension is granted based upon Deputy Attorney General Kathleen A. McKenna's epresentation that she anticipates filing that brief by 5/15/2005.
|Apr 20 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file respondent's brief. (6th request)
|Apr 25 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Apr 25 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 5/25/2005 to file respondent's brief. Extension is granted based upon Deputy Attorney General Kathleen A. McKenna's representation that she anticipates filing that brief by 5/25/2005. After that date, no further extension will be granted.
|May 4 2005||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 16 2005||Written return filed|
to OSC (Richardson v. Superior Court, S127275). (33 pp.)
|May 18 2005||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 25 2005||Respondent's brief filed|
(77268 words; 287 pp.)
|Jun 2 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's reply brief. (1st request)
|Jun 2 2005||Reply to return filed|
by attorney Richard Jay Moller (Richardson v. Superior Court, S127275). (18 pp.)
|Jun 8 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 8/12/2005 to file appellant's reply brief.
|Jun 24 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jul 13 2005||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jul 25 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's reply brief. (2nd request)
|Jul 25 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Jul 26 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 10/11/2005 to file appellant's reply brief. After that date, only four further extensions totaling about 210 additional days are contemplated. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by 6/2006.
|Aug 17 2005||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Sep 20 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Sep 23 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's reply brief. (3rd request)
|Sep 23 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Sep 29 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 12/9/2005 to file appellant's reply brief. After that date, only three further extensions totaling about 150 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by 6/2006.
|Nov 28 2005||Request for extension of time filed|
to file reply brief. (4th request)
|Nov 28 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Dec 1 2005||Extension of time granted|
to 2/7/2006 to file the reply brief. After that date, only two further extensions totaling about 90 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by June 2006.
|Dec 16 2005||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jan 18 2006||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 3 2006||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's reply brief. (5th request)
|Feb 3 2006||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Feb 7 2006||Extension of time granted|
to 4/10/2006 to file the appellant's reply brief. After that date, only one further extension totaling about 60 additional days will be granted. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by June 2006.
|Mar 27 2006||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Moller.
|Mar 27 2006||Request for extension of time filed|
to file appellant's reply brief. (6th request)
|Mar 28 2006||Extension of time granted|
to June 9, 2006 to file appellant's opening brief. Extension is granted based upon counsel Richard Jay Moller's representation that he anticipates filing that brief by June 9, 2006. After that date, no further extension will be granted.
|May 30 2006||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Jun 8 2006||Appellant's reply brief filed|
(46,461 words; 169 pp.)
|Jun 21 2006||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jul 28 2006||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Oct 16 2006||Counsel's status report received (confidential)|
from atty Kelly.
|Dec 5 2006||Related habeas corpus petition filed (concurrent)|
|Dec 20 2006||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jan 2 2007||Motion for access to sealed record filed|
respondent's "Request for Sealed Records Pursuant to Penal Code Section 987.9, Subdivision (D)."
|Jan 12 2007||Filed:|
petitioner's response to respondent's request for sealed records.
|Feb 28 2007||Motion denied|
Respondent's "Request for Sealed Records Pursuant to Penal Code Section 987.9, Subdivision (d)," filed on December 27, 2006, is denied because the record on appeal does not contain any such records.
|Mar 22 2007||Filed:|
additional record on appeal, clerk's transcript 5 volumes (978 pp.)
|Mar 22 2007||Letter sent to:|
counsel advising additional record on appeal filed this date.
|Mar 26 2007||Motion for access to sealed record filed|
|Apr 25 2007||Motion for access to sealed record granted|
Respondent's "Renewed Request for Sealed Records Pursuant to Penal Code Section 987.9, Subdivision (d)," filed on March 26, 2007, is granted. The Clerk of this court is directed to provide respondent with copies of the two volumes of sealed section 987.9 materials, pages 1 through 322, filed in this court on March 22, 2007. Except as provided herein, these documents must remain under seal and their use must be limited solely to the pending proceeding. (Pen. Code Section 987.9, subd. (d); see also Cal. Rules of Court, rule 8.160(g).)
|May 24 2007||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jun 13 2007||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Aug 24 2007||Received:|
copies of (missing) pp. 4851-4865 of volume 41 of the reporter's transcript of defendant's second trial, from attorney Moller.
|Aug 27 2007||Note:|
copies of pp. 4851-4865 of volume 41 of the reporter's transcript sent to attorney Karen Kelly and Deputy AG McKenna this date.
|Aug 29 2007||Exhibit(s) lodged|
People's exhibits, nos. 17 and 19.
|Sep 26 2007||Habeas funds request filed (confidential)|
|Sep 26 2007||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Oct 18 2007||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Nov 14 2007||Previously consolidated cases ordered severed|
Review in Richardson v. Superior Court (People), S127275, is severed from review in People v. Charles Keith Richardson, S029588. The Clerk of the Court is directed to reopen case number S127275 for determination of the cause by this court.
|Dec 27 2007||Oral argument letter sent|
advising counsel that the court could schedule this case for argument as early as the February 2008 calendar, to be held the week of February 4, 2008, in Sacramento. The advisement of "focus issues," notification that two counsel are required, and any request for oral argument time in excess of 30 minutes must be submitted to the court within 10 days of the order setting the case for argument.
|Feb 6 2008||Case ordered on calendar|
to be argued Thursday, March 6, 2008, at 1:30 p.m., in San Francisco
|Feb 19 2008||Filed:|
appellant's focus issues letter, dated February 13, 2008.
|Feb 19 2008||Received:|
appellant's letter of additional authorities, dated February 13, 2008.
|Feb 27 2008||Received:|
appearance sheet from R. Jay Moller, indicating 45 minutes for oral argument for appellant.
|Mar 6 2008||Cause argued and submitted|
|Mar 12 2008||Order filed re habeas funds request (confidential)|
|Mar 20 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Mar 20 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Apr 9 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 21 2008||Notice of forthcoming opinion posted|
|May 22 2008||Opinion filed: Judgment affirmed in full|
The matter is remanded to the trial court for reconsideration of the question of the restitution fine. In all other respects, the judgment is affirmed. opinion by Moreno, J. -----joined by George, C.J., Kennard, Baxter, Werdegar, Chin and Corrigan, JJ.
|Jun 13 2008||Rehearing petition filed|
by appellant (726 words; 4 pp.) (note: envelope indicates petition was mailed via priority mail June 6, 2008 and remailed on June 11, 2008. Petition was received at the court this date.)
|Jun 18 2008||Time extended to consider modification or rehearing|
The time for granting or denying rehearing in the above-entitled case is hereby extended to and including August 20, 2008, or the date upon which rehearing is either granted or denied., whichever occurs first.
|Jun 18 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jun 25 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Jul 16 2008||Rehearing denied|
The opinion is modified on the court's own motion. The petition for rehearing is denied.
|Jul 16 2008||Opinion modified - no change in judgment|
|Jul 16 2008||Remittitur issued (AA)|
|Jul 17 2008||Exhibit(s) returned|
to superior court.
|Jul 24 2008||Received:|
acknowledgment of receipt of exhibits from superior court.
|Jul 25 2008||Received:|
acknowledgment of receipt of remittitur from the superior court.
|Oct 1 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Oct 16 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Nov 17 2008||Received:|
letter from U.S.S.C, dated November 13, 2008, advising that a petition for writ of certiorari was filed on October 6, 2008, and placed on its docket November 13, 2008 as No. 08-7202.
|Nov 20 2008||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Feb 23 2009||Certiorari denied by U.S. Supreme Court|
|Apr 20 2009||Counsel fee request received|
|Jun 10 2009||Compensation awarded counsel|
|Oct 29 2009||Compensation awarded counsel|
|May 26 2004||Appellant's opening brief filed|
|May 16 2005||Written return filed|
|May 25 2005||Respondent's brief filed|
|Jun 2 2005||Reply to return filed|
|Jun 8 2006||Appellant's reply brief filed|