Charter School's Suit Against School District, Plus Criminal, Education & Workers' Compensation Matters

By FindLaw Staff on August 20, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

People v. Duff, S153917, concerned a challenge to the court of appeals' affirmance of the trial court's denial of defendant's request for presentence conduct credit, claiming that because execution of sentence for the second degree murder conviction of his one year-old son was stayed pursuant to section 654, the prohibition against the earning of presentence conduct credit for persons convicted of murder that is established by section 2933.2(c) should not have been applied to the calculation of presentence conduct credit against his term of imprisonment for assault on a child.


In affirming the court of appeals' decision, the court held that, considering section 2933.2(c) in the context of surrounding statutory provisions, and also considering the purpose that sections 2933.1 and 2933.2 were intended to serve, the "notwithstanding" language found in section 2933.2(c) operates to prevent any reduction of the term of imprisonment for a person who "is convicted" of murder, despite the general provisions of section 654.

Moore v. Superior Court, S174633, concerned a challenge to the court of appeals reversal of trial court's denial of defendant's motion to stay the proceedings to extend his commitment as an SVP to determine his mental competence to stand trial.  In reversing the judgment of the court of appeals, the court held that, balancing all the factors, and placing special weight on the paramount interest in public safety, the due process does not require mental competence on the part of someone undergoing a commitment or recommitment trial under the SVP.

In re Pope, S160930, involved a prosecution for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, causing injury and driving with an unlawful blood-alcohol level causing injury, and gross vehicular manslaughter, and trial court's sentence of six years for the gross vehicular manslaughter conviction, imposition but stay of execution of a sentence of five years for each of the driving-while-under-the-influence offenses.  In affirming the court of appeals' reversal of trial court's grant of defendant's petition for habeas relief challenging the calculation of his worktime credits, the court held that defendant is subject to the limitations imposed by section 2933.1(a), notwithstanding the circumstance that execution of sentence for the qualifying offenses has been stayed pursuant to section 654.

Radford v. Shehorn, B216323, involved a defendant's motion to enforce a settlement agreement against the plaintiff, arising from plaintiff's petition in probate court challenging the defendant's distribution of trust assets established by their parents.  In affirming the trial court's conclusion that the first page of the two-page settlement was part of the agreement in granting the motion to enforce the settlement, the court held that although the trial court erred in admitting the mediator's declaration into evidence, the error was harmless as there is no reasonable probability that plaintiff would have obtained a more favorable result in the absence of the error in admitting the mediator's declaration.

People v. Valli, C057362, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for felony evading, following his acquittal of murder, attempted murder and being a felon in possession of a firearm.  In affirming the conviction, the court held that the subsequent prosecution for felony evading was not barred by Penal Code section 654, because although the People used evidence of the evading in the murder trial to show consciousness of guilt, the same act or course of conduct did not play a significant part in both the murder and the evading.  Also, there was no vindictive prosecution as the new charges were brought not in retaliation for the exercise of constitutional rights, but in response to the acquittal on the murder charge.

People v. Eid, G041759, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for kidnapping for ransom for his role in handling two illegal aliens smuggled into the United States, and sentence of concurrent term of life in prison with the possibility of parole.  In reversing the conviction, the court held that CALCRIM No. 1202 on kidnapping for ransom is incomplete because it fails to inform the jury of the people's burden to prove that the victim did not consent to being confined and that the defendant did not actually and reasonably believe the victim consented.  And here, the court erred by failing to charge the jury sua sponte on the foregoing elements of kidnapping for ransom.  Also, the court erred by failing to instruct the jury on the corresponding defenses requested by defendants; and 4) the court erred by improperly answering a question asked by the jury during its deliberations.

New W. Charter Middle Sch. v. Los Angeles Unified Sch. Dist., B215777, involved plaintiff-charter school's suit against the Los Angeles School District for revoking its offer to plaintiff a number of classrooms and the shared use of other facilities at a high school.  The court affirmed the trial court's judgment awarding plaintiff $175,630.72 in damages and denial of attorney fees, but modified the judgment as plaintiff's damages are the value of co-location at the high school less the costs of co-location, for a total damage calculation of $187,356.  The court affirmed the trial court's order denying attorney fees as it did not err in concluding that plaintiff's expense was not disproportionate to its stake in the case.

Milpitas Unified Sch. Dist. v. Workers' Comp. Appeals Bd., H034853, involved a School District employee's suit for workers' compensation claims.  In affirming the decision of the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, the court held that the language of section 4660 permits reliance on the entire American Medical Association's Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment, including the instructions on the use of clinical judgment, in deriving an impairment rating in a particular case.

Berman v. Cate, E049552, involved a plaintiff's petition for writ of mandate seeking specific performance of an alleged term of his plea agreement mandating that his term of parole not exceed three years.  In reversing the superior court's grant of the petition issuing a peremptory writ of mandate directing the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (Department) to release plaintiff from parole immediately in compliance with and enforcement of his plea agreement, the court held that the three-year term of parole was not negotiated "term" of plaintiff's plea agreement as it could not lawfully have been a negotiated term of such an agreement.  The court went onto hold that, at best, the statement on the guilty plea form, that plaintiff's incarceration would be followed by a parole term of three years, was a misadvisement of the consequences of his plea for which plaintiff has failed to allege sufficient prejudice entitling him to relief.

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