People v. EtheridgeAnnotate this Case
After defendant stole a packaged steak from the meat department of a grocery store, he was convicted of second degree robbery and acquitted of petty theft. The jury found that defendant had two prior residential burglary convictions under the “Three Strikes” law and Penal Code section 667, subdivision (a)(1). Because the parties agreed that the robbery conviction could be reduced to petty theft with a prior, the court modified defendant’s conviction to petty theft with a prior and remanded for resentencing. Defendant subsequently filed a motion for a “finding of factual innocence for the erroneous Robbery conviction” under section 1485.55, subdivision (b), arguing that he had “spent 18 years wrongly imprisoned.” The trial court denied the motion. The court held that, where, as in this case, a conviction is modified to reflect conviction of another offense, the defendant would not have been unlawfully imprisoned for that period of time he or she would have served for the offense as modified. In this case, defendant was innocent of robbery, but guilty of petty theft with a prior and, under the Three Strikes Law, he was subjected to 25 years to life. Defendant had been incarcerated for 18 years, which is less than the 25-year minimum term of the indeterminate third-strike sentence he likely would have received had he been convicted of petty theft with a prior instead of robbery. The court affirmed the judgment.