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SF NEW DA Denied Withdrawal Of Previous DA's Resentencing Motion

People v. Vaesau Docket: A165925 (First Appellate District), Opinion Date: August 4, 2023. Based on events that occurred in 1991, when he was a minor, Vaesau was convicted of three counts of attempted premeditated murder and three counts of assault with a firearm, all six of which were accompanied by allegations of personal use of a firearm and personal infliction of great bodily injury, plus a separate assault. The court sentenced him to two consecutive life terms, plus 14 years. Thirty years later, San Francisco’s then-District Attorney, Boudin, filed a request to resentence Vaesau under former Penal Code section 1170.03, now 1172.1, which authorizes a trial court, “at any time upon the recommendation of ... the district attorney,” to recall the sentence and resentence a defendant convicted of a felony. Weeks later, Boudin was recalled, and the new District Attorney moved to withdraw the request without offering a substantive reason for doing so. After briefing and a hearing, the trial court granted the motion without ruling on the merits. The court of appeal vacated. A trial court has discretion but is not required, to terminate a section 1172.1 proceeding when a district attorney identifies a legitimate basis for withdrawing the resentencing request and moves to withdraw before the court rules on the merits. Here, the district attorney here did not offer any such reason.

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