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Sandor J. Woren v. Osteopathic Medical Board of California

December 17, 2010

SANDOR J. WOREN, PLAINTIFF AND APPELLANT,
v.
OSTEOPATHIC MEDICAL BOARD OF CALIFORNIA, DEFENDANT AND RESPONDENT.



(Super. Ct. No. 34200980000149CUWMDGS

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Cantil-sakauye ,j.

Woren v. Osteopathic Medical Bd. CA3

NOT TO BE PUBLISHED

California Rules of Court, rule 8.1115(a), prohibits courts and parties from citing or relying on opinions not certified for publication or ordered published, except as specified by rule 8.1115(b). This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

(Sacramento)

The Osteopathic Medical Board of California (the Board) disciplined the licensee, Sandor J. Woren, a doctor of osteopathic medicine, after Woren was convicted of petty theft for stealing an inexpensive cell phone cover from Home Depot. Woren appeals from a judgment denying his petition for a writ of mandate to set aside the Board's discipline order after the trial court sustained the Board's demurrer without leave to amend. He contends the trial court erred in finding his petition was untimely and also in finding his crime of petty theft was substantially related to the practice of medicine.

We affirm. Woren's petition for a writ of mandate was not filed within the time limit set forth in Government Code section 11523. Accordingly, the trial court properly sustained the demurrer.

BACKGROUND

In February of 2008, the Board filed an accusation against Woren. The accusation stated two grounds for discipline: engaging in dishonest or corrupt acts, and the conviction of a substantially related offense. These grounds were based on Woren's theft of a cell phone cover, worth $6 or $7, from Home Depot and his subsequent conviction by jury of petty theft (Pen. Code, § 484, subd. (a)).*fn1

After a hearing, an administrative law judge (ALJ) issued a decision. The ALJ found cause existed to discipline Woren for his dishonest act of stealing and his conviction for petty theft. Under the Board's Disciplinary Guidelines, the minimum discipline for an act of dishonesty or the conviction of a crime was a stay of revocation and five years' probation. The ALJ found, however, that only three years' probation was necessary to protect the public welfare. The ALJ further found imposing psychiatric treatment as a condition of probation was not necessary to protect the public.

At the conclusion of the hearing, the ALJ told Woren that if he was not happy with the decision, he could petition for a writ of mandate. The ALJ advised Woren to have assistance of counsel to file the petition because "[i]t is kind of a specialized legal proceeding" and "[t]here is a limited amount of time to file those applications."

The Board adopted the ALJ's decision on November 20, 2008. It set an effective date for its order of December 22, 2008. In the meantime, on December 15, 2008, the Board sent Woren a letter informing him of the Board's decision and its effective date.

Woren then requested a stay of any action by the Board. The Board replied it was without jurisdiction to stay the matter once the decision had been accepted. On January 14, 2009, Woren requested a transcript of the hearing.

On January 23, 2009, Woren, representing himself, petitioned for a writ of mandate, seeking to have the Board's decision set aside. Woren contended the crime of petty theft was not ...


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