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The People v. Arthur Ochoa

August 30, 2011

THE PEOPLE, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
ARTHUR OCHOA, DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



(Super. Ct. No. 094672)

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Robie , J.

P. v. Ochoa

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NOT TO BE PUBLISHED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 This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

A jury found defendant Arthur Ochoa guilty of willful infliction of corporal injury on a cohabitant and false imprisonment with force and violence. The trial court sentenced him to a total of six years in prison.

Defendant appeals, contending that the trial court erred in instructing the jury on flight and the error was prejudicial. Finding no prejudice, we affirm the judgment.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

Defendant and Belinda Humackich, who prefers to go by Pridemore, were a couple in a sexual relationship and had been living together for about two months prior to October 3, 2009. One morning, defendant awoke in the living room and began "yelling" about "crazy things." The couple yelled at each other and the argument "escalated, and it got heated, and it got worse." Defendant and Pridemore "wrestled around" and defendant wrapped his hand in a shirt and punched Pridemore in the face. As a result, Pridemore suffered a "fat lip." Defendant prevented Pridemore from leaving the apartment by "barricad[ing]" her in. Pridemore attempted to leave when defendant went to the bathroom, but defendant caught up to her in the driveway and "yanked [her] back [into the house] by [her] hair." Defendant "proceeded to throw [Pridemore's] stuff out of the house, and then he shut the door and wouldn't let [her] leave."

At some point, defendant left in his van to his father's house, and Pridemore approached her neighbor, Bernard Kanowsky and asked him to call the police. He made the call. Kanowsky said he saw defendant yelling, throwing items, and raising a fist but not actually punching Pridemore outside.

Pridemore tried to collect her things, but defendant returned, "threw" Pridemore and her belongings in a dumpster, "and then he took off again."

When responding West Sacramento Police Officer Josh Carruth arrived, Pridemore was in the dumpster recovering her property and defendant was not there. Pridemore was "a little distraught" and "[c]rying a little bit." She had a "small abrasion to her mouth area approximately the size of a dime." About 10 minutes after the officer arrived, defendant returned, and the officer placed him under arrest.

Defendant's ex-wife, Susan Mills, testified she had married defendant in April 2000 and divorced him in 2003. The couple divorced after an incident during which defendant "got really physically abusive" toward Mills. After the incident, Mills went ...


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