Friday, February 20, 2015

Buza Reloaded: California Supreme Court Grants Review

Yesterday the California Supreme Court granted review in People v. Buza, No. A125542 (Cal. Ct. App., 1st Dist., Dec. 3, 2014), and ordered the Court of Appeal opinion "depublished." A depublication order "is not an expression of the court's opinion of the correctness of the result of the decision or of any law stated in the opinion." Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 8.1125(d) (2015). However, "an opinion of a California Court of Appeal ... that is not ... ordered published must not be cited or relied on by a court or a party in any other action" in California. Rule 8.1115(a).

The California Department of Justice issued a information bulletin advising all state law enforcement agencies that
By operation of state law, the Supreme Court’s order granting review removes the Court of Appeal’s opinion as published authority and prevents citation or reliance on that decision in any other action. As a result of the California Supreme Court’s grant of review of this decision, there is now no state precedent that precludes collection of DNA database samples from adult felony arrestees pursuant to Penal Code section 296.

Penal Code sections 296(a)(2) and 296.1(a) therefore are in full effect and mandate the collection of DNA database samples from all adults arrested for a felony or wobbler offense. All authorized arrestee samples that have been or will be received by the California Department of Justice DNA Data Bank program will be analyzed and uploaded to CODIS.

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