Category Archives: Issues: Omission/Mischaracterization/Unbriefed

Did the opinion mischaracterize or fail to consider/resolve a briefed issue whose resolution could have changed the result? Or materially rely on an issue unbriefed by the parties, in violation of GC 68081? (“Material”: it’s reasonably likely the error affected the result.)

People v. Debouver – 7/27/2016

People v. Debouver

No. B262455 (opn 7/27/2016, rhg den 8/17/2016)

Year: 2016
Facts: Error/Omission
Law: Error/Misstatement
Issues: Omission/Unbriefed
Court: 2d District, Div 6
Errors Found/Argued: Errors not found by another court

Summary: There are assorted factual and legal errors and misstatements, as well as mischaracterization of appellant’s claims, which are outlined in the rehearing petition.  The most glaring mischaracterization of an issue (or perhaps simply a legal error) is in arguments IV and V of the rehearing petition, where the DCA treated “inhabited dwelling” and “residence” as one and the same, despite clear recognition in case law, see especially Singleton, that they have materially different meanings.

Document links:
Appellant’s Opening Brief (PDF)
Appellant’s Reply Brief (PDF)
Court of Appeal Opinion (Google Scholar)
Court of Appeal Opinion (PDF)
Petition for Rehearing (PDF)

People v. Nguyen – 8/13/2015

People v. Nguyen

No. S076340; 61 Cal.4th 1015 (opn 8/13/2015; rhg den 10/14/2015; petn for cert to be filed)

Year: 2015
Facts: Error/Omission
Law: Error/Misstatement
Issues: Omission/Unbriefed
Prejudice: Selective vs. Whole-Record Review
Court: Supreme Court
Errors Found/Argued: Errors not found by another court

Summary: In this capital case decision, the California Supreme Court consistently portrayed the facts of the crimes in a misleadingly (and sometimes inaccurately) pro-prosecution manner, ignoring evidence that undermined the prosecution’s case or supported the defense version; it repeatedly ignored appellant’s legal arguments; it ignored precedent in appellant’s favor; it reached pro-prosecution conclusions about the law that were neither explained nor supported by precedent; it frequently misstated or misleadingly portrayed the facts relevant to the legal issues raised; and it relied on reasons for rejecting appellant’s claims that had not been proposed by the respondent. See, e.g.:

Facts: Error/Omission: Rhg.Pet. pp. 5-21, 34-36, 39, 46-49, 50-51, 56-57, 58

Law: Error/Misstatement: Rhg.Pet. 28-29, 56, 58-59

Issues: Omission, Mischaracterization, Unbriefed: Rhg.Pet. 21-26, 29-30, 34, 36-37, 39, 40-44, 51-52, 53-55, 56-57

Prejudice: Selective vs. Whole Record Review: Rhg.Pet. 13, 31, 34, 37-38, 44-46

Document Links:
Supreme Court Opinion (61 Cal.4th 1015; Google Scholar)
Supreme Court Opinion (PDF)
Petition for Rehearing (PDF)