California v. HayesAnnotate this Case
J.C. was driving to his mother L.B.'s house when when he spotted, in front of a home’s garage, items that were taken from his property about a week ago. As J.C. pulled in to talk to the home’s owner, defendant Cynthia Hayes came out of the house and yelled at him. Shortly after J.C. arrived at his mother’s home, defendant pulled up in a pickup truck and started honking the horn. J.C. went outside, accused defendant of stealing his property, and told her to leave. Defendant responded by yelling at J.C. and punching him in the face. L.B. came out of the house and told defendant to leave. Defendant kept yelling, went to L.B.’s car and scratched the passenger-side door with her keys. When L.B. pushed defendant away from the car, defendant punched her, giving L.B. a black eye. L.B. and defendant engaged in a struggle until L.B.’s husband pulled defendant off of L.B. Following a jury trial, defendant was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon vandalism with damage exceeding $400, and misdemeanor battery. Before the jury rendered its verdict, defendant admitted five prior prison term allegations. The trial court struck two of the prison priors and sentenced defendant to a seven-year eight-month state prison term. On appeal, defendant contended she was denied representation at a critical stage of the proceedings, her prison priors should have been struck because the felony underlying the most recent prior was reduced to a misdemeanor after her sentencing hearing, and the trial court abused its discretion in denying her motion to continue sentencing. The Court of Appeal found an error in calculating the sentence, vacated the sentence and remanded for resentencing. The Court affirmed in all other respects.