April 4, 2016
Because the Supreme Court doesn’t hear oral arguments in July and August, its two or three calendars before the summer are traditionally heavy ones. This year is no exception. May is the only month with two oral argument sessions, and the just announced early-May calendar has 17 cases over three days. The calendar is fairly evenly divided between civil and criminal cases.
In two of the cases (In re Richards and People v. Macabeo), the court will deal with the aftermath of prior decisions having been unfavorably received by the Legislature (Richards) or the U.S. Supreme Court (Macabeo).
On May 3, 4, and 5, in San Francisco, the court will hear the following cases (with the issue presented as stated on the court’s website):
Property Reserve, Inc. v. Superior Court: (1) Do the geological testing activities proposed by the Department of Water Resources constitute a taking? (2) Do the environmental testing activities set forth in the February 22, 2011, entry order constitute a taking? (3) If so, do the precondemnation entry statutes (Code Civ. Proc., §§ 1245.010-1245.060) provide a constitutionally valid eminent domain proceeding for the taking?
Sandquist v. Lebo Automotive, Inc.: Does the trial court or the arbitrator decide whether an arbitration agreement provides for class arbitration if the agreement itself is silent on the issue?
People v. Fuentes: Does the trial court have the power under Penal Code section 1385 to dismiss a Penal Code section 186.22 enhancement for gang-related crimes, or is the court limited to striking the punishment for the enhancement in accordance with subdivision (g) of section 186.22?
In re Isaiah W.: Does a parent’s failure to appeal from a juvenile court order finding that notice under the Indian Child Welfare Act was unnecessary preclude the parent from subsequently challenging that finding more than a year later in the course of appealing an order terminating parental rights?
The United States is one of the amici curiae in this case.
In re Abbigail A.: Do rules 5.482(c) and 5.484(c)(2) of the California Rules of Court conflict with Welfare and Institutions Code section 224.1, subdivision (a), by requiring the juvenile court to apply the provision of the Indian Child Welfare Act (25 U.S.C. § 1901 et seq.) to a child found by a tribe to be eligible for tribal membership if the child has not yet obtained formal enrollment?
The United States is an amicus curiae in this case, too. Here, however, the court solicited the amicus brief, asking the federal government six months ago to discuss “whether rules 5.482(c) and 5.484(c)(2) of the California Rules of Court are preempted to the extent those rules purport to require California courts to apply the Indian Child Welfare Act (25 U.S.C. § 1901 et seq.) (ICWA) in child custody proceedings involving a minor who is not an ‘Indian child’ as defined in ICWA. (See 25 U.S.C. § 1903(4); cf. id., §§ 1902 & 1921.)”
In re Richards: The court issued an order to show cause why relief should not be granted on the ground that petitioner was convicted on the basis of false evidence as defined in Penal Code section 1473, subdivision (e).
The court is revisiting this conviction after legislation overruled its earlier decision.
Friends of the College of San Mateo Gardens v. San Mateo County Community College District: When a lead agency performs a subsequent environmental review and prepares a subsequent environmental impact report, a subsequent negative declaration, or an addendum, is the agency’s decision reviewed under a substantial evidence standard of review (Mani Brothers Real Estate Group v. City of Los Angeles (2007) 153 Cal.App.4th 1385), or is the agency’s decision subject to a threshold determination whether the modification of the project constitutes a “new project altogether,” as a matter of law (Save our Neighborhood v. Lishman (2006) 140 Cal.App.4th 1288)?
Ramos v. Brenntag Specialties, Inc.: Are negligence and strict liability claims by an employee of a processing company against a supplier of raw materials for injuries allegedly suffered in the course of processing those materials barred by the component parts doctrine?
[Disclosure: Horvitz & Levy is counsel for one of the defendants and filed the merits briefs in which the other defendants joined.]
People v. Ikeda: (1) After detaining a person outside a hotel room, may law enforcement officers enter the detainee’s room to conduct a protective sweep under Maryland v. Buie (1990) 494 U.S. 325 based on a reasonable suspicion the room harbors a person posing a danger to officer safety? (2) Did law enforcement officers have reasonable suspicion in this case to believe defendant’s hotel room harbored a person who posed a danger to officer safety?
People v. Moran: Was the condition of probation barring defendant from all Home Depot stores and their parking lots after he was convicted of shoplifting at a single Home Depot store unconstitutionally overbroad as impinging on his constitutional right to travel?
People v. Morales: Can excess custody credits be used to reduce or eliminate the one-year parole period required by Penal Code section 1170.18, subdivision (d), upon resentencing under Proposition 47?
The court’s docket is filled with Proposition 47 cases, raising a variety of issues. Morales is just one of them, but there are at least a half dozen grant-and-hold cases waiting for the Morales decision.
People v. Macabeo: (1) May law enforcement officers conduct a search incident to the authority to arrest for a minor traffic offense, so long as a custodial arrest (even for an unrelated crime) follows? (2) Did Riley v. California (2014) __ U.S. __ [134 S.Ct. 2473, 189 L.Ed.2d 430] require the exclusion of evidence obtained during the warrantless search of the suspect’s cell phone incident to arrest, or did the search fall within the good faith exception to the exclusionary rule (see Davis v. United States (2011) 564 U.S. __ [131 S.Ct. 2419, 180 L.Ed.2d 285]) in light of People v. Diaz (2011) 51 Cal.4th 84?
Macabeo raises an issue in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s (indirect) reversal of a California Supreme Court decision.
City of Perris v. Stamper: (1) In this eminent domain case, was the constitutionality of the dedication requirement — that the city claimed it would have required in order to grant the property owner permission to put the property to a higher use — a question that had to be resolved by the jury pursuant to article I, section 19, of the California Constitution? (2) Was the dedication requirement a “project effect” that the eminent domain law required to be ignored in determining just compensation?
Baral v. Schnitt: Does a special motion to strike under Code of Civil Procedure section 425.16 authorize a trial court to excise allegations of activity protected under the statute when the cause of action also includes meritorious allegations based on activity that is not protected under the statute?
People v. Espinoza: (1) Did the trial court err in continuing trial in defendant’s absence without a valid waiver of his trial rights or appointment of counsel after defendant, who was out of custody and representing himself, voluntarily failed to appear for his ongoing trial? (2) Was reversal required because the trial court refused to grant defendant a one-day continuance after it granted his motion during jury selection to represent himself?
People v. Zaragoza: This is an automatic appeal from a May 2001 judgment of death. The court’s website does not list issues for such appeals.
People v. Jackson: This is an automatic appeal from a November 2005 judgment of death. The court’s website does not list issues for such appeals.