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The People v. Michael Eugene Jastraub

April 19, 2012

THE PEOPLE, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
MICHAEL EUGENE JASTRAUB, DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



(Super. Ct. No. 08F04045)

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

P. . v Jastraub

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NOT TO BE PUBLISHED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 This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.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 Michael Eugene Jastraub guilty of second degree murder and additional counts related to driving under the influence and unlawful possession of illegal substances. The trial court found a prior strike allegation true.

On appeal, defendant contends the court abused its discretion by admitting evidence of his uncharged misconduct. He also contends, and the People concede, that the trial court miscalculated the number of presentence custody credits due him. We will accept the People's concession regarding the custody credits and, in all other respects, affirm the judgment.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

At approximately 3:00 p.m. on May 15, 2008, defendant ran a red light at the intersection of Florin Road and South Land Park Drive. He collided with and seriously damaged a vehicle driven by Tim Nguyen. Defendant sped away from the scene of the collision, leaving his bumper underneath the other vehicle. Nguyen noticed defendant's face looked "droopy" and a little bit "sleepy." Nguyen's passenger, Danh Truong, said defendant "looked dazed and confused" just prior to the collision.

Shortly thereafter, defendant returned to the scene of the collision, swerving, driving up onto the sidewalk at times, and nearly colliding with another vehicle before driving away again.

Witnesses Jessica Sayler and Cory Fukuoka saw defendant leave the accident scene, return minutes later driving erratically, then leave a second time. Sayler told investigators defendant had a "wild" or "crazy" facial expression and looked like he was "hopped up" on something. Fukuoka said defendant "looked like he was tweaking, like he was on drugs." Fukuoka followed defendant's truck as it headed onto the freeway on-ramp, but stopped his pursuit when defendant slammed on his brakes, made a U-turn, and drove up the grassy hill back toward Florin Road.

Around that time, Janell Cummings was driving home on Florin Road after picking up her niece, Maleka, and a friend, Destiny Estrada, from school. Both girls sat in the backseat of Cummings's car. As Cummings pulled into the left-hand turn lane, defendant's pickup truck collided with hers, forcing her car into the path of an oncoming car driven by Roberto Comparan. Comparan was unable to stop and crashed into Cummings's car. Cummings later died as a result of the collision. Maleka suffered a broken jaw and a facial laceration that left her with a permanent scar. Estrada suffered minor injuries.

Police searched defendant's truck and found 36 tablets of carisoprodol, one clonazepam tablet, .05 grams of methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, and a prescription bottle bearing a name other than defendant's. Defendant initially denied being under the influence of drugs, but later told police his blood test would likely show methamphetamine and heroin in his system and admitted having taken those drugs around noon that day.*fn1

Defendant was charged with second degree murder, two counts of driving under the influence causing injury, unlawful possession of methamphetamine, unlawful possession of clonazepam, being under the influence of methamphetamine, possession of clonazepam pills without a prescription, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving without a valid license, driving without insurance, and leaving the scene of an accident. It was further alleged that, with respect to the murder and driving ...


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