Aug. 29, 2022 – People v. Tran (Supreme Ct., S165998)

In an automatic appeal after a judgment of death, the Supreme Court concludes AB 333’s amendments to PC 186.22 require reversal of the gang enhancement. The court declines to resolve the split in authority as to the retroactivity of PC 1109 because the failure to bifurcate was harmless as to appellant’s guilty verdicts and penalty judgment. The court otherwise affirms, rejecting challenges related to failure to sever, instructional errors, sufficiency of the evidence, inadmissible hearsay in gang expert testimony, speculative expert testimony, and the Eighth Amendment.