California v. AguayoAnnotate this Case
Veronica Aguayo hit her elderly father about 50 times with a bicycle lock and chain, then threw a ceramic pot on his head. Aguayo was working on her bicycle in her parents' yard. Her 72-year-old father (Father) turned on the sprinklers to water the plants, accidentally wetting Aguayo's cell phone charger. A jury found her guilty of assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm and assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury (force-likely assault). The trial court placed her on probation. Aguayo appealed. In the Court of Appeal's original opinion, it rejected the sole issue Aguayo initially asserted: that the Court had to vacate her conviction for force-likely assault because it was a lesser included offense of assault with a deadly weapon. Aguayo then filed a petition for rehearing in which she challenged the reasoning of the first opinion and asserted a new argument based on legislation enacted while this appeal was pending. Specifically, she argued that newly enacted Penal Code sections 1001.35 and 1001.36, which grant trial courts the discretion to place defendants with mental disorders into pretrial diversion, apply retroactively to her case. The Court once again rejected the lesser-included-offense argument Aguayo originally raised. With respect to the newly raised issue here, the Court concluded the mental health diversion legislation applied retroactively; Aguayo made a showing of potential eligibility sufficient to warrant a remand for further proceedings.