There were no straight grants at the Supreme Court’s Wednesday conference.  It was a day for adding new grant-and-holds and ridding the docket of some old ones.  Actions of note included:

  • The court dismissed review in Manson cult follower Leslie Van Houten’s case seeking to overturn then-Governor Jerry Brown’s reversal of a parole grant.  The matter was a grant-and-hold for In re Palmer (see here), in which the court dismissed review last month because the Board of Parole Hearings had adopted new regulations governing youth offender parole hearings.  The Van Houten dismissal is for the same reason.  Justice Joshua Groban was recused.
  • The court invited the Attorney General to file an amicus curiae brief in O.G. v. Superior Court.  (Party briefing has not yet been completed.)  O.G. will decide the validity, under the state constitution, of Senate Bill 1391, which essentially prevents prosecution in adult criminal court for a crime committed by anyone under 16 years old.  Uncommonly, the issue has divided the state’s prosecutors — a number of district attorneys have challenged SB 1391, while California’s Attorney General has argued it is a valid exercise of legislative power.  (See here.)
  • The court denied review in People v. Millard, but Justices Goodwin Liu and Groban recorded votes to grant.  The Fourth District, Division One, Court of Appeal, in an unpublished opinion, upheld the superior court’s denial of a prisoner’s request for a hearing on the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Secretary’s recommendation that the prisoner be resentenced, a recommendation the court had rejected.  The Secretary had recommended resentencing because of a statutory change allowing courts to strike firearm enhancements.
  • There were seven criminal case grant-and-holds:  one more holding for a decision in In re Gadlin (see here); one more holding for People v. Lopez (see here); two more holding for People v. Lewis (see here); one holding for both Lopez and Lewis; one more holding for People v. Frahs (see here), which was argued last month; and one more holding for O.G. v. Superior Court (see here and above).
  • Besides the Van Houten case (see above), the court got rid of 11 other former grant-and-holds.  The 11 were all transferred to the Courts of Appeal for reconsideration in light of People v. McKenzie (2020) 9 Cal.5th 40, which the court decided in February.
  • The court sent an original habeas corpus petition to the superior court for determination whether relief is warranted under Senate Bill 620, 2017 legislation that allows for the striking of firearm enhancements.
  • There was one criminal case grant-and-transfer order after a Sixth District summary denial of a writ petition, which apparently involves an attempted peremptory challenge of a trial court judge.
  • The court dismissed review in a civil grant-and-hold case — Galen v. Redfin Corporation — that had been on the court’s docket since 2014!  It was on hold for Sanchez v. Valencia Holding Co., an arbitration case, which the court decided in 2015.  The docket indicates the case was removed to federal court five years ago.