How have courts dealt with multiple convictions arising out of a single act of drunk driving?

California, United States of America


The following excerpt is from People v. Pearson, 228 Cal.Rptr. 509, 42 Cal.3d 351, 721 P.2d 595 (Cal. 1986):

In People v. Duarte (1984) 161 Cal.App.3d 438, 207 Cal.Rptr. 615, the court faced a situation comparable to the instant matter. The defendant was convicted, inter alia, of violating subdivisions (a) and (b) of Vehicle Code section 23153 (driving under the influence). Both convictions arose from a single act of "drunk driving." The Court of Appeal affirmed the convictions, but feared that although the defendant's sentence on the second conviction was stayed in accordance with well-established section 654 practice, the risk remained that both convictions might be used to enhance future punishment. The court reasoned: "Having suffered two convictions and one punishment, defendant remains exposed to the use of the two convictions to enhance future punishment. The Vehicle Code contains an increasing number of sections which penalize recidivism. These sections ordinarily refer to prior 'convictions' without qualifying them to exclude multiple convictions arising from a single driving occasion. By only staying punishment on one of the two convictions, another court at another time may have to determine whether the defendant has one or two 'priors.' " (Id. at p. 447, italics in original, 207 Cal.Rptr.[721 P.2d 602] 615.) To avoid such multiple enhancement based on a single act of illegal driving, which the court correctly stated would be a violation of section 654, it modified the judgment by ordering that "the use of the [second] conviction ... as a prior conviction for penal and administrative purposes, be stayed...." (Id. at p. 448, italics in original, 207 Cal.Rptr. 615.) Again, in People v. Conner (1986) 176 Cal.App.3d 716, 222 Cal.Rptr. 311, the court was also faced with multiple convictions arising out of a single act of drunk driving; it followed Duarte and stayed the use of the lesser conviction for sentencing and administrative purposes. (Id. at p. 719, 222 Cal.Rptr. 311.)

Other Questions


Does Section 654 of the California Criminal Code bar multiple convictions and sentences based on a single conviction and sentence for a single assault? (California, United States of America)
Can a jury convict a defendant of multiple crimes arising from a single act? (California, United States of America)
Does Section 654 of the California Criminal Code bar multiple sex offenders from receiving multiple punishment for multiple sex crimes committed during a single course of conduct? (California, United States of America)
When a defendant is convicted of multiple crimes arising out of the same act or an indivisible course of conduct, can they be convicted of more than one of the crimes? (California, United States of America)
What is the test for violating section 654 of the California Criminal Code when a defendant is convicted of multiple crimes arising from a single indivisible course of conduct? (California, United States of America)
Does section 654, subdivision (a) of the California Criminal Code allow for multiple convictions arising out of a single act or omission? (California, United States of America)
Does section 654 of the California Criminal Code allow a defendant to be convicted of a single charge of street terrorism and a separate charge of attempted murder for a single drive-by shooting? (California, United States of America)
Does section 654 of the California Criminal Code limit punishment for multiple convictions arising out of a single act? (California, United States of America)
Can a defendant be convicted of multiple crimes arising from a single crime? (California, United States of America)
When a defendant is convicted of multiple charges arising out of the same act or omission, can the trial court stay execution of the sentence? (California, United States of America)
X



Whitelogo nobg 300dpi sm


"The most advanced legal research software ever built."


Trusted by top litigators from across North America.