[Published Opinion] The Court of Appeal held that the trial court abused its discretion by ordering appellant to pay noneconomic victim restitution pursuant to PC 1202.4(f)(3)(F), where there was no evidence of the impact of appellant’s crimes on the victim, so the trial court instead relied exclusively on its experience and “common sense” regarding similar incidents. The court reasoned that an award for noneconomic damages must be supported by “some evidence of the harm incurred by the particular victim.”
The Court of Appeal ordered the trial court to amend the sentencing minute order to reflect its oral pronouncement prohibiting appellant from possessing any “dangerous or deadly” weapons (as opposed to “any weapon”), and to impose the court operations fee and criminal conviction assessment as separate orders instead of as a condition of probation. The Court further ordered that the trial court vacate the portion of the judgment imposing a restitution collection fee pursuant to Assembly Bill No. 177 (2021–2022 Reg. Sess.).
The Court of Appeal vacated the $25 administrative screening fee, which was imposed pursuant to former PC 1463.07.
Appellant, along with four others, stole $17,000 worth of leggings from Lululemon that were recovered in perfect condition within an hour of the theft. The Court of Appeal reversed the victim restitution award, finding that the trial court abused its discretion by awarding restitution for the full retail price of the items because: (1) substantial evidence did not support that the items could not be resold for full value; and (2) even if substantial evidence supported the determination of an economic loss, the proper valuation for the items was their wholesale, rather than retail, value.
Upon resentencing after remand, the trial court ruled it lacked jurisdiction to conduct a full resentencing of appellant based on the terms of the remittitur. The Court of Appeal remanded again, holding that “a remand for resentencing as to part of a sentence [which was directed here] necessarily re-opens the entire sentence for full resentencing.” The Court further explained that it’s prior opinion regarding appellant’s constitutional claim of indigency was not limited to the restitution fine, as the trial court interpreted, and directed that appellant receive another ability to pay hearing with regards to the remaining fines and fees.
In light of Assembly Bill 177, which eliminated certain fees in criminal cases and rendered the unpaid balance of any such fees unenforceable and uncollectible, the Court of Appeal struck the administrative fee under former Penal Code section 1203.1. The Court also remanded the matter to allow the trial court the opportunity to exercise its discretion under amended Penal Code section 654.
The Court of Appeal modified the probation condition requiring appellant to comply with an individualized substance abuse treatment plan as ordered by the probation department to clarify that his substance abuse treatment was to be on an outpatient basis. The Court further held that the judgment should be clarified to indicate that the restitution fine under Penal Code section 1202.4(b) was stayed based on appellant’s inability to pay under People v. Dueñas (2019) 30 Cal.App.5th 1157.
The Court of Appeal held that the trial court erred by imposing a $15,000 ($5,000 for each conviction), when the maximum allowable fine under Penal Code section 1202.4(b) is $10,000. The Court also directed the trial court to correct errors in the abstract of judgment.
The Court of Appeal held that appellant’s sentence for receiving the stolen catalytic converter (Pen. Code, § 496(a)) should have been stayed under Penal Code section 654 because there was no evidence that he had a different intent or objective in receiving the stolen catalytic converter than he did in stealing it. The court also vacated the $50 fee imposed pursuant former Penal Code section 987.5(a) in light of AB 1869.
The Court of Appeal remanded the matter for resentencing to allow the trial court to (1) exercise the discretion conferred on it by Assembly Bill 518 and any other applicable recent changes to sentencing laws, (2) impose sentence on three counts and then stay the execution of those sentences pursuant to section 654, unless the court elects to impose sentence on one of these counts, in which case it should impose sentence and stay execution of the sentences on any remaining counts, (3) amend the abstract of judgment to show that appellant is entitled to additional presentence credits, and (4) amend the abstract of judgment to show that appellant’s conviction for making a criminal threat was reversed after appellant’s first appeal and never retried.