At the Supreme Court’s conference yesterday, actions of note included:

  • Supreme Court will answer Ninth Circuit’s take-home Covid questions.
  • Review granted in PAGA case.
  • Bail. The court made grant-and-transfer orders in two habeas corpus matters. (See: Teeing up an unresolved bail question.) Additionally, although there was no petition for review of, or request to depublish, the Second District, Division Seven, Court of Appeal opinion in In re Brown, the Supreme Court specifically considered granting review on its own motion (see here), but decided not to. Division Seven concluded setting a defendant’s bail at $2.45 million violated the constitution as interpreted by the Supreme Court in In re Humphrey (2021) 11 Cal.5th 135 (see here). The appellate court ordered the superior court “to hold a new hearing at which it is to consider nonmonetary alternatives to money bail, determine Brown’s ability to afford the amount of money bail if it is to be set, and follow the procedures and make the findings necessary for a valid order of detention if no conditions for pretrial release will adequately protect the government’s interests in the safety of potential victims and the public generally or the integrity of the criminal proceedings.”
  • Youth offender parole. Over another Justice Goodwin Liu recorded dissenting vote, the court denied review of the Second District, Division Six, unpublished opinion in People v. Barrascout, which rejected an equal protection challenge to a statute making youth offender parole hearings unavailable for defendants sentenced to life without parole for offenses committed between the ages of 18 and 25. It’s an issue of continuing interest to Justice Liu. (See here and here.)
  • Assumption of the risk. The Supreme Court denied review in Brown v. El Dorado Union High School District, where the Third District’s published opinion affirmed summary judgment against a student who sued his school district for traumatic brain injury he suffered during a junior varsity football game. Based on a release the student and his father had signed, the Third District held “summary judgment was proper due to the Browns’ express assumption of the risks associated with [the student’s] participation in the football program.” Horvitz & Levy represented the School District on appeal, including opposing the petition for review.
  • Criminal case grant-and-holds. There were 4 criminal case grant-and-holds: one more waiting for a decision in People v. Strong (see here), which was argued last month; one more holding for People v. Prudholme (see here); one holding for People v. Reyes (see here); and one more holding for People v. Faial (see here).