People v. J.G. (In re J.G.)

CourtCalifornia Court of Appeals
Citation7 Cal.App.5th 955,212 Cal.Rptr.3d 872
Decision Date24 January 2017
Docket NumberC077056
Parties IN RE J.G., a Person Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law. The People, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. J.G., Defendant and Appellant.

7 Cal.App.5th 955
212 Cal.Rptr.3d 872

IN RE J.G., a Person Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law.

The People, Plaintiff and Respondent,
J.G., Defendant and Appellant.


Court of Appeal, Third District, California.

Filed January 24, 2017

Certified for Partial Publication.*

William C. Whaley, under appointment by the Court of Appeal, for Defendant and Appellant.

Kamala D. Harris, Attorney General, Gerald A. Engler, Chief Assistant Attorney General, Michael P. Farrell, Assistant Attorney General, Brook A. Bennigson,

212 Cal.Rptr.3d 873

Deputy Attorney General, for Plaintiff and Respondent.


7 Cal.App.5th 958

In lieu of adjudging minor J.G. a ward of the court based on his commission of trespass and felony vandalism, the juvenile court granted minor deferred entry of judgment and placed him on probation with terms and conditions including payment of restitution to the victim. Because minor eventually satisfied the terms and conditions of his probation with the exception of full payment of ordered restitution, the juvenile court terminated minor's probation, dismissed the wardship petition and converted the restitution order to a civil judgment. Minor appeals from the juvenile court's order.

Minor now contends (1) the court of appeal has jurisdiction to review the juvenile court's order because the order is a judgment within the meaning of Welfare and Institutions Code section 800, subdivision (a) ;1 (2) a juvenile court can only convert a restitution order to a civil judgment if it has adjudged a minor a ward of the court; and (3) the juvenile court misapplied the law in assessing minor's ability to pay restitution.

In the published portion of this opinion, we conclude:

1. The challenged order is a judgment within the meaning of section 800, subdivision (a), because the juvenile court rendered a final determination of the rights of the parties in the wardship proceeding.

7 Cal.App.5th 959

2. Even if a juvenile court has not adjudged a minor a ward of the court, it can convert an unfulfilled restitution order to a civil judgment when it terminates a minor's deferred entry of judgment probation and dismisses the wardship petition.

And in the unpublished portion of this opinion, we conclude:

3. Minor has not established a misapplication of the law.

We will affirm the judgment.


The California Department of Parks and Recreation received information from local residents that a group of boys damaged brickwork, wood fences, and historic buildings at Shasta State Historic Park, and also threw pine cones and sticks into traffic on Highway 299. Five individuals, including the 14-year-old minor, confessed to participation in the offenses.

The People filed a petition to declare minor a ward of the juvenile court, alleging felony vandalism (Pen. Code, § 594, subd. (b)(2) —count 1), felony throwing an object at a vehicle on a highway with intent to do great bodily injury (Veh. Code, § 23110, subd. (b) —count 2), trespass and damage to or removal of highway signs (Pen. Code, § 602, subd. (f) —count 3), and trespass (id. at subd. (m)—count 4).

The People gave notice that minor was eligible for deferred entry of judgment (DEJ). Minor was referred for review of informal probation and DEJ. According to the probation officer's report, minor and his parents consented to probation. The probation officer recommended a grant of DEJ pursuant to section 790, with terms and conditions including completion of 40 hours of community service and/or a pro-social activity and payment of restitution to the California State Park, with the requirement for payment of restitution to be joint and several with the other offenders, their parents, and minor's parents. Probation recommended that the order of victim restitution remain in effect until paid in

212 Cal.Rptr.3d 874

full pursuant to section 730.6 or 730.7 and not be discharged upon termination of probation or DEJ.

Minor admitted the charges for felony vandalism (count 1) and trespass (count 4). The juvenile court granted minor DEJ under section 790, adopted the terms and conditions recommended by the probation officer but deferred the determination of the restitution amount, and found that the maximum term of confinement would be three years and two months should judgment be entered.

7 Cal.App.5th 960

The juvenile court conducted a subsequent hearing to determine whether minor had the ability to pay restitution. Minor said he was a freshman in high school, did not have a job, and did not have a bank account or trust fund in his name. He received Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and food stamps and his father received disability income. There was no other source of income for the family. It was undisputed that the family's income was below the federal poverty level and the People stipulated to balances in minor's bank account.

The juvenile court asked the parties to brief whether it could consider minor's SSI in determining minor's ability to pay restitution. The People argued the juvenile court could consider minor's SSI benefits in determining his ability to pay restitution, but could not compel minor to use his SSI to pay restitution. Minor argued SSI could not be used to pay restitution, therefore the fact that minor received SSI could not be considered in determining whether restitution should be ordered.

The juvenile court found that minor had ability to pay restitution. It set the monthly restitution payment at $25 and total restitution at $36,381, ordering that liability would be joint and several with minor's co-offenders. Minor reserved his right to a restitution hearing and the juvenile court said it could adjust the restitution amount after a hearing.

Two months later, the People filed a motion for entry of judgment. Probation indicated minor had completed all of the terms and conditions of probation except full payment of victim restitution. The juvenile court terminated probation and DEJ, dismissed the wardship petition, and converted the unfulfilled restitution order to a civil judgment. Counsel for minor said she had no objection to the conversion, with the understanding that minor would file an appeal regarding the issue of minor's ability to pay.

Minor filed a notice of appeal on July 31, 2014, challenging the juvenile court's January 29, 2014 finding of ability to pay restitution and July 9, 2014 order. Although the notice of appeal references a July 10, 2014 conversion order, the record shows the juvenile court entered the conversion order on July 9, 2014. We deem the notice of appeal to refer to the July 9 order.


Before we address the contentions on appeal, it will be helpful to describe the statutes governing DEJ and restitution in juvenile delinquency proceedings. Where a minor is before the juvenile court for a determination whether he or she is a person described in section 602 because of the

7 Cal.App.5th 961

commission of a felony, the juvenile court may grant the minor DEJ if the minor is eligible for DEJ, the juvenile court finds that DEJ is suitable in that case, and the minor admits the allegations in the wardship petition. (§§ 790-791.) An order granting DEJ places a minor on probation without adjudging him or her a ward of the court and defers entry of judgment so the minor may complete probation and thereby

212 Cal.Rptr.3d 875

avoid a judgment altogether. (In re Mario C . (2004) 124 Cal.App.4th 1303, 1308, 21 Cal.Rptr.3d 891 (Mario C . ).) When a minor is permitted to participate in DEJ, the juvenile court must impose certain requirements as conditions of probation. (§ 794.) The juvenile court may also require the minor to pay restitution. (Ibid . ) As we explain in more detail in the Discussion, sections 730.6 and 742.16 govern restitution and apply to a minor who is granted DEJ and ordered to pay victim restitution. (§ 794; G.C. v. Superior Court (2010) 183 Cal.App.4th 371, 377, 107 Cal.Rptr.3d 514 (G.C . ).) Section 730.6 generally provides for restitution in juvenile delinquency cases. That statute requires a juvenile court to order a minor to pay victim restitution for economic losses caused by the minor. (§ 730.6, subds. (a)(1), (a)(2), (i), (l ); see Cal. Const., art. I, § 28, subd. (b), par. (13) [a victim has a constitutional right to restitution].) And in cases involving vandalism, section 742.16 requires the juvenile court, with certain exceptions, to order as a condition of probation that the minor wash, paint, repair, or replace the property defaced, damaged, or destroyed by the minor, or otherwise pay restitution, or both. (§ 742.16, subd. (a).)

If a minor who has been granted DEJ does not perform satisfactorily on probation, does not comply with the terms of probation, or is not benefiting from education, treatment, or rehabilitation, the juvenile court must lift the DEJ and schedule a dispositional...

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5 cases
  • People v. Christian M. (In re Christian M.), D070522
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • June 26, 2017
    ...wardship proceeding, and it restricts appealable orders, judgments and decrees to those enumerated in that section. (In re J.G. (2017) 7 Cal.App.5th 955, 962, citing Ricki J. v. Superior Court (2005) 128 Cal.App.4th 783, 788.) The People argue that despite section 800, subdivision (a), whic......
  • People v. M.T. (In re M.T.), A155224
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • December 24, 2019
    ...section 654 and dismissal of the juvenile petition ( In re K.C ., supra , at p. 470, 163 Cal.Rptr.3d 177 ); and in In re J.G. (2017) 7 Cal.App.5th 955, 212 Cal.Rptr.3d 872, the appellate court found it had "jurisdiction to review the juvenile court’s order terminating probation [that had be......
  • People v. J.G. (In re J.G.), S240397
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • February 25, 2019
    ...counsel who argued in Supreme Court.Name of Opinion In re J.G.Unpublished OpinionOriginal AppealOriginal ProceedingReview Granted XXX 7 Cal.App.5th 955Rehearing GrantedOpinion No. S240397Date Filed: February 25, 2019Court: SuperiorCounty: ShastaJudge: Monique D. McKeeCounsel:William C. Whal......
  • People v. Vincent R. (In re Vincent R.), A148593
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • April 24, 2017
    ...find no arguable issues. (People v. Kelly (2006) 40 Cal.4th 106, 126.) The court did not err by terminating DEJ. (See In re J.G. (2017) 7 Cal.App.5th 955, 961; People v. Orozco (2012) 209 Cal.App.4th 726, 729.) The court did not abuse its discretion in placing the minor at juvenile hall. (S......
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