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The People v. Hector Villegas

April 26, 2012

THE PEOPLE, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
HECTOR VILLEGAS, DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County, David W. Stuart, Judge. (Los Angeles County Super. Ct. No. PA061169)

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

CERTIFIED FOR PUBLICATION

Affirmed as modified.

Defendant and appellant Hector Villegas, a sex offender subject to registration, was convicted by jury in count 2*fn1 of failure to file a change of address. (Pen. Code, § 290.013. subd. (a).)*fn2 In count 3, defendant was convicted of failing to notify the responsible agency of his new address. (§ 290.013. subd (b).) The trial court sentenced defendant to state prison in count 2 for the upper term of three years, enhanced by one year for a prior prison term (§ 667.5, subd. (b)). The same sentence was imposed as to count 3 but stayed under section 654.

Defendant contends that one of his convictions must be reversed because subdivisions (a) and (b) of section 290.013 "describe alternate and mutually exclusive theories for the same offense," with subdivision (a) requiring the jury to find defendant knew where he was moving but subdivision (b) requiring the jury to find defendant did not know his new address at the time of the move. Defendant also argues the abstract of judgment must be amended to conform to the oral pronouncement of judgment, a point properly conceded by the Attorney General. We order modification to the abstract of judgment and otherwise affirm.

FACTS

Defendant, a sex offender residing in the San Fernando Valley, was required to register his place of residence at the Van Nuys Division of the Los Angeles Police Department.*fn3 Defendant acknowledged his understanding of the current registration requirements each time he registered between 1999 and 2007. On April 5, 2007, defendant registered his address as at a motel in Sylmar.

Defendant was on parole at the time of his last registration for an unrelated offense. His parole officer advised defendant of his registration requirements, and that he was required to notify her if he moved.

On December 30, 2007, the global positioning system attached to defendant's leg stopped indicating movement. The parole officer checked defendant's motel room that day but received no answer to her knocks on the door. The parole officer returned on December 31. The manager of the motel allowed the parole officer into defendant's room. Defendant's belongings were gone, the global positioning device had been cut from his leg, and he left a note indicating he felt he did not need to report to the parole officer.

Defendant did not notify the Los Angeles Police Department that he had moved or that he had a new residence. Defendant was arrested in Alabama in 2008. He was extradited to California in 2010 for trial.

DISCUSSION

Multiple Violations of Section 290.013

Defendant argues he cannot be convicted under both subdivisions (a) and (b) of section 290.013 because the two provisions contain mutually exclusive states of mind regarding the registrant's knowledge of a new address. According to defendant, subdivision (a) required him to give notice of a new address only if he knew the new address at the time he moved. Subdivision (b) is violated when the registrant does not know the new address at the time of the move and the registrant fails to give written notice of a new address within five days of reaching the new location. Because, in defendant's view, subdivision (a) requires knowledge of a new address and subdivision (b) excludes knowledge of a new address, the two subdivisions are mutually exclusive means of punishing the failure to provide notice of a move from one location to another. As defendant sees it, the jury's verdicts meant it found ...


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