People v. CastanedaAnnotate this Case
Defendant was convicted of crimes related to the murder of Colleen Mary Kennedy and sentenced to death. On automatic appeal, defendant argued, among other things, that the trial court provided an erroneous instruction concerning the element of asportation for the offense of kidnapping and thereby violated his rights to due process and a fair trial under the Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution and article I, sections 7 and 17 of the California Constitution. The court held, and the Attorney General conceded, that the totality of the circumstances standards set forth in People v. Martinez could not be applied to defendant's actions where defendant moved the victim from one room to another room. The court also held, and the Attorney General conceded, that "it is reasonably probable that a result more favorable to [defendant] would have been reached in the absence of the error." Therefore, the court reversed the judgment of conviction for kidnapping, vacated the findings related to kidnapping, and otherwise affirmed the judgment.