Actions of note at yesterday’s Supreme Court conference included:

  • Undercover interrogation issue draws another Justice Liu dissenting statement.
  • The court granted review in People v. McWilliams.  A divided Sixth District Court of Appeal unpublished opinion held evidence seized during a search after an illegal detention was admissible because, after the detention and before the search, the arresting officer learned the defendant was on parole that allowed for searches.  The majority said “discovery of defendant’s parolee status sufficiently dissipated any taint from the unlawful detention.”  But the dissenter asserted “it was foreseeable that the detention and routine records check could result in discovery that McWilliams was on parole (or probation) and thus subject to a suspicionless search condition, given that more than half a million people are under parole or probation supervision in California.”  She also quotes a concurring opinion in another Court of Appeal case that quoted U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor — “ ‘ “it is no secret that people of color are disproportionate victims of this type of scrutiny” in suspicionless stops.’ ”  The defendant in the case is Black.

[July 2 update:  The court-staff-drafted issues for the case are:  (1) Is the discovery of a parole or probation search condition an intervening circumstance that removes the taint of an illegal detention under the attenuation doctrine?  (2) What constitutes purposeful and flagrant police misconduct under the attenuation doctrine analysis?]

  • The court also agreed to hear In re D.N., where the Fifth District, in an unpublished opinion, reviewed probation conditions for a minor found to be a ward of the court for sexually molesting a 7-year-old.  The appellate court upheld the juvenile court’s delegation to the probation department of authority to offer community service “ ‘as an option to work off alleged probation violations.’ ”  Also affirmed were probation conditions involving curfew, chemical testing for substances, warrantless searches, and substance abuse assessment.  However, the appellate court concluded the record was insufficient to sustain an AIDS testing requirement.  The Supreme Court did not limit the issues on review, so it’s not clear which probation conditions will be considered.  But, on the chemical-testing and warrantless-search conditions, the appellate court did distinguish the Supreme Court’s 2019 decision in In re Ricardo P. (2019) 7 Cal.5th 1113.  In May, the court heard argument in a case concerning the standard for reviewing a condition of release on mandatory supervision — People v. Bryant.

[July 2 update:  The court-staff-drafted issue for the case is:  Did the trial court improperly delegate its authority to the probation department and violate the minor’s due process rights by permitting the probation department to offer the minor community service hours “to work off any alleged probation violations”?]

  • The court denied review in In re I.S. over the recorded dissenting vote of Justice Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar.  The unpublished opinion of the Fourth District, Division Three, upheld a juvenile court’s finding that the 13-year-old defendant was guilty of the voluntary manslaughter of his mother.  The appellate court rejected arguments that the prosecution failed to prove defendant didn’t act in self defense, that defendant’s father should have been granted immunity for his testimony, and that statements the defendant made to the police were obtained in violation of Miranda.  Justice Cuéllar did not indicate which of the issues led to his vote.
  • The court also denied review over a dissenting vote, this time by Justice Joshua Groban, in People v. Robinson.  A divided unpublished opinion by the Third District rejected a request for a remand to allow the superior court to decide whether to strike an enhancement under new legislation, Senate Bill 1393.  The majority concluded a remand was futile because of the superior court’s ruling on a different motion to strike.  The dissent, however, said the two strike options involve “very different analyses with different considerations.”
  • The court transferred another capital habeas corpus petition to the superior court under Proposition 66.  (See here and here.)
  • There were 19 criminal case grant-and-holds:  four more holding for a decision in People v. Lewis (see here), which was argued in May; one more holding for People v. Lopez (see here); two more holding for Lewis and Lopez; one more holding for Lewis and People v. Strong (see here) (that’s a total of 296 Lewis grant-and-holds); six more holding for People v. Delgadillo (see here); two more holding for People v. Raybon (see here), which was also argued in May; one more holding for People v. Duke (see here); one more holding for People v. Hernandez (see here); and one more holding for In re Mohammad (see here).