FIRST DISTRICT APPELLATE PROJECT

Fighting for justice in criminal, juvenile, and civil commitment appeals.

FDAP Attorneys Honored for Work Advocating for Inmates Impacted by COVID-19 Outbreak at San Quentin State Prison

The Daily Journal editors have selected FDAP Assistant Director J. Bradley O’Connell and Staff Attorney Richard Braucher as recipients of the 2021 California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year Award for Appellate Litigation.

To read more about the San Quentin case, the Daily Journal award, and how to support this work, please click here.

COVID-19 Information for FDAP Clients and Panel Attorneys

In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, the First District Appellate Project (FDAP) extends our best wishes to those stricken by the virus and all those impacted in other ways, including financial losses and job security.

Please visit our Pandemic 2021 information page and FAQs, where we share information about FDAP operations, Court operations, and try our best to answer any questions. Be sure to view the related FAQs.

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Latest First District Victories

September 21, 2021

A160911

Panel Attorney: Jonathan Roberts

In a case in which appellant entered into a negotiated disposition that involved admitting six prior prison terms and resulted in a 10-year split sentence, the Court of Appeal held that, pursuant to People v. Esquivel (2021) 11 Cal.5th 671 and People v. McKenzie (2020) 9 Cal.5th 40, appellant’s case was not final for purposes of retroactive application of SB 136 – which restricted one-year prison term enhancements to terms served for violent sexual offenses – under Estrada. However, after noting that “Courts of Appeal are split as to whether remand under [People v. Stamps (2020) 9 Cal.5th 685] is required where, as here, legislation has eliminated (rather than left to the trial court’s discretion) a sentencing enhancement imposed in connection with a negotiated disposition that included a specific, agreed-to sentence,” the Court held that the case must be remanded. But the Court ordered that, upon remand, the trial court may not impose a longer term than that to which the parties originally agreed.

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Pathways to an Appellate Practice

Interested in becoming an appellate attorney? Visit our Pathways to an Appellate Practice section for details on

  • becoming a panel attorney;
  • FDAP’s Associate Staff Attorney Program; and
  • law student opportunities.
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