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The People v. James George Stamos

September 30, 2011

THE PEOPLE, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
JAMES GEORGE STAMOS, JR., DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



(Super. Ct. No. 10-CR-17093)

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

P. v. Stamos

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NOT TO BE PUBLISHED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 This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

This case comes to us pursuant to People v. Wende (1979) 25 Cal.3d 436 (Wende). Having reviewed the record as required by Wende, we affirm the judgment. We provide the following brief description of the facts and procedural history of the case. (See People v. Kelly (2006) 40 Cal.4th 106, 110, 124.)

A few days after Joseph Corso discovered his Chevrolet Corsica missing from his home in Cupertino, defendant was seen by Amador County Sheriff Deputy Nathan Woods driving it in Jackson around 4:00 a.m. Woods ran a records check and learned the vehicle might be stolen. He followed the car for about a mile and saw it roll through a stop sign, turn right off the road and stop. When defendant exited the car, Woods took him into custody. Defendant told Woods he had gotten the car from a friend and forgotten to return it. The ignition key was a plastic valet key. Corso generally left a plastic valet key in the car in the glove compartment box.

Defendant claimed Corso's sister-in-law, who he had known as a child, had given him permission to use the car for a couple of days. He drove to Valley Springs to get some clothes and was stopped in Jackson while returning to Cupertino. He intended to return the car, but kept encountering difficulties such as running out of gas and the car battery dying.

Corso countered he had not seen his sister-in-law since his brother's death some 11 years earlier and she did not live in the same town as he did.

Defendant was charged with vehicle theft (Veh. Code, § 10851, subd. (a)) and receiving stolen property. (Pen. Code, § 496d, subd. (a).)*fn1 It was also alleged defendant had sustained a prior strike conviction (§ 667, subds. (b)-(i)) and served a prior prison term. (§ 667.5.)

Jury trial commenced on October 19, 2010. Following trial, defendant was found guilty of vehicle theft, but acquitted of receiving stolen property. In bifurcated proceedings, the court found the prior strike conviction and the prior prison term allegations true. Defendant was sentenced to an aggregate state prison term of seven years, achieved by imposing the upper term of three years doubled, consecutive to one year for the prior prison term. He was awarded 206 days of presentence custody credits, 138 actual and 68 conduct credits under section 4019. He was also ordered to pay various fines and fees.

Appointed counsel filed an opening brief setting forth the facts of the case and requesting this court to review the record and determine whether there are any arguable issues on appeal. (Wende, supra, 25 Cal.3d 436.) Defendant was advised by counsel of the right to file a supplemental brief within 30 days of the date of filing of the opening brief.

Defendant filed a supplemental brief, claiming the court erred in denying his motion to dismiss based on a violation of his right to a speedy trial, he was improperly "forced to wear jail shoes" during trial and his attorney was ineffective in failing "to obtain witnesses or things as evidence to present a defense." Defendant also claims his sentence was in error, as to his knowledge, he did not have a prior strike conviction.

Defendant was entitled to have an information filed within 15 days of being held to answer (§ 1382, subd. (a)(1)) and was entitled to be brought to trial within 60 days of his arraignment on the information. (§§ 1382, subd. (a)(2); 1049.5.) Both deadlines were met. The preliminary hearing was held on August 6, 2010, and defendant was held to answer on that same date. The information was filed on August 10, 2010, and defendant was arraigned on the information on ...


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