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Ryan-Lanigan v. Bureau of Real Estate

California Court of Appeal, Third District

December 13, 2013

Peggie Anne RYAN-LANIGAN, Plaintiff and Respondent,
v.
Bureau of Real Estate,[1] Defendant and Appellant.

[CERTIFIED FOR PARTIAL PUBLICATION[*]]

APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Sacramento County, Jaime R. Roman, Judge. Affirmed. (Super. Ct. No. 34-2010-80000626CUWMGDS).

Page 73

COUNSEL

[165 Cal.Rptr.3d 583] Kamala D. Harris, Attorney General, Paul D. Gifford, Assistant Attorney General, William L. Carter and Amy J. Winn, Deputy Attorneys General, for Defendant and Appellant.

Mark S. Axup, Sacramento, for Plaintiff and Respondent.

OPINION

MURRAY, J.

Page 74

The California Bureau of Real Estate (the Bureau) revoked the real estate salesperson's license of Peggie Anne Ryan- [165 Cal.Rptr.3d 584] Lanigan due to her conviction of misdemeanor hit and run (Veh. Code, § 20002, subd. (a)) on a no contest plea. Ryan-Lanigan petitioned the Sacramento Superior Court for a writ of administrative mandamus (Code Civ. Proc., § 1094.5) on the ground that, before the Bureau revoked her license, the superior court where her plea was entered (the criminal court) set aside her misdemeanor conviction nunc pro tunc, allowed her to withdraw her plea and plead to a basic speed law infraction, and dismissed the hit-and-run charge. On her petition, the trial court entered judgment in favor of Ryan-Lanigan, ordering issuance of a writ directing the Bureau to set aside its decision revoking her real estate license and remanding to the Bureau to reconsider its decision.

The Bureau appeals, arguing (1) Business and Professions Code section 10177[2] authorizes the license revocation despite the criminal court's order allowing Ryan-Lanigan to withdraw her no contest plea and setting aside the misdemeanor conviction, (2) the criminal court order is void, and (3) substantial evidence supports the Bureau's decision to revoke Ryan-Lanigan's real estate license.

In the published portion of the opinion, we hold that section 10177 does not authorize the license revocation in this case because that section does not allow discipline when there has been a dismissal unless the dismissal is pursuant to Penal Code section 1203.4, i.e., an expungement. Here, the dismissal was not pursuant to Penal Code section 1203.4, and there is no other evidence supporting the Bureau's revocation of Ryan-Lanigan's real estate license. In the unpublished portion of the opinion, we conclude that the criminal court's order of dismissal is not void.

We affirm.

Page 75

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

On November 4, 2007, shortly after 6:00 p.m., Ryan-Lanigan was driving home from her office and rear-ended a vehicle that was stopped at a stop sign. The victim and her two small children who were in the vehicle did not sustain any injuries, but the victim's vehicle sustained damage to the right rear bumper and panel. The victim said Ryan-Lanigan refused to wait for the California Highway Patrol (CHP), got back in her car, and left the scene without giving her name or address.[3]

[165 Cal.Rptr.3d 585] About 7:00 p.m., CHP officers went to Ryan-Lanigan's home. A television was on and visible through the window. The officers knocked on the door and rang the doorbell repeatedly for 10 minutes, but no one answered.

The CHP report concluded, based on the damage to the victim's car and the victim's estimate that Ryan-Lanigan was traveling about 20 miles per hour at the point of impact, that Ryan-Lanigan caused the collision by violating Vehicle Code section 22350, which prohibits driving at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property.

On January 13, 2009, in criminal case No. P07CRM8922 in El Dorado County, Ryan-Lanigan pleaded no contest and was convicted of misdemeanor hit and run with property damage. (Veh. Code, § 20002, subd. (a).) The criminal court suspended imposition of sentence and placed Ryan-Lanigan on probation for 36 months, with conditions including restitution and completion of a specified number of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings.

In November 2009, a deputy real estate commissioner filed an accusation seeking disciplinary action against Ryan-Lanigan's real estate license on the ground that she was convicted of misdemeanor hit and run, which bears a substantial relationship to the qualifications, functions or duties of a real ...


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