At yesterday’s conference, the Supreme Court granted review in two COVID insurance coverage cases (see: Supreme Court takes two more COVID insurance cases; one, from the Ninth Circuit, is a grant-and-hold). Otherwise, things were fairly quiet. Non-COVID actions of note included:

  • SVP placement. The court denied review in People v. Superior Court (Cheek) over the dissenting recorded vote of Justice Goodwin Liu. Justice Kelli Evans was recused. A 2-1 published opinion by the Sixth District Court of Appeal overturned an order conditionally releasing a sexually violent predator because his placement was in a residence within a statutorily prohibited quarter mile of a “public or private school.” The opinion summarized the bases for the superior court’s decision — “the school in question is a private home school that did not exist until after the community was notified of Cheek’s pending release — suggesting the school was created for the very purpose of preventing placement in that area.” The appellate justices all agreed that the timing of the school’s creation didn’t negate the statutory bar; “it is for the Legislature to remedy any perceived loophole, not the courts,” the opinion said. The dispute was whether a home school qualifies as a “public or private school” under the statute. The majority said “the text of the statute does not support an intention to limit its application based on school size or character.” The dissent, on the other hand, claimed “the majority’s definition of ‘any public or private school’ as encompassing any private home in which the residents elect to home school their children to be inconsistent with both the plain language of the statute and the Legislature’s balancing of competing interests.”
  • Criminal case grant-and-holds. There were four criminal case grant-and-holds, two more each waiting for decisions in People v. Lynch (see here) and People v. Reyes (see here), which will be argued next week.
  • More Delgadillo grant-and-hold disposals. The court continued its disposal — apparently alphabetical (see here) — of grant-and-holds that had been waiting for the December decision in People v. Delgadillo (2022) 14 Cal.5th 216. In 30 cases from People v. Goethe to People v. Taylor, the court dismissed review in three and transferred 27 with orders stating, the “matter is transferred to the Court of Appeal . . . with directions to vacate its decision and reconsider whether to exercise its discretion to conduct an independent review of the record or provide any other relief in light of People v. Delgadillo (2022) 14 Cal.5th 216, 232-233 & fn. 6.”
  • Non-Delgadillo disposals. The court granted review in one case and sent it back to the Court of Appeal for reconsideration in light of January’s opinion in People v. Espinoza (2023) 14 Cal.5th 311. In three cases that were grant-and-holds for the November decision in People v. Henderson (2022) 14 Cal.5th 34, the court dismissed review in two and sent one back for reconsideration.