People v. Murphy, Cr. 1832

CourtCalifornia Court of Appeals
Citation207 Cal.App.2d 885,24 Cal.Rptr. 803
Decision Date27 September 1962
Docket NumberCr. 1832
PartiesThe PEOPLE of the State of California, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. Joseph MURPHY, Defendant and Appellant.

Richard S. Henderson, Rudolph J. Basile and Thad D. Williams, San Diego, for appellant.

Stanley Mosk, Atty. Gen., William E. James, Asst. Atty. Gen., and Stanley X. Cook, Deputy Atty. Gen., for respondent.

GRIFFIN, Presiding Justice.

Defendant and appellant Joseph Murphy was charged in an indictment with three violations of Penal Code, section 288, in that he committed lewd acts upon his 10-year-old stepdaughter. He was convicted on all three counts after a jury trial.

The events which formed the basis of the third count were observed through windows by defendant's 17-year-old stepson, a neighbor and a police officer. The testimony of these witnesses was corroborated by that of the stepdaughter.

After the jury's verdict was announced, on September 18, 1961, defendant's counsel said:

'* * * at this time we would like to make an application for probation hearing and at his time I would like to enter a motion for new trial on all statutory grounds.'

Argument on the motion was set for hearing on the same day as the application for probation. The time for pronouncement of judgment was waived in order that a sexual psychopathy determination could be made. Following an examination by doctors, it was determined that defendant was a sexual psychopath but he was not a menace to the health and safety of others. He was remanded to the trial court for further hearing on January 5, 1962. At the hearing, defendant's counsel argued that defendant should be granted probation, but no mention was made of the motion for a new trial. After this argument, the court asked defendant's counsel if there was any legal cause why judgment should not be pronounced. Counsel answered, 'No legal cause.' The court then sentenced defendant to consecutive terms in state prison on counts one and two and a concurrent sentence on count three. The court made no reference to or disposition of the purported motion for a new trial. However, the judge, in his remarks, said that he thought that the trial was fairly conducted and the conviction was justified, and he particularly mentioned that the deputy district attorney prosecuting the case had been extremely fair in his presentation.

The only question raised on this appeal is: Under the circumstances, does the fact that the trial judge made no ruling on the purported motion for a new trial cause an automatic granting of a new trial because of Penal Code, section 1202, which provides:

'If no sufficient cause is alleged or appears to the court at the time fixed for pronouncing judgment, as provided in Section 1191 of this code, why judgment should not be pronounced, it must thereupon be rendered; and if not rendered or pronounced within the time so fixed or to which it is continued under the provisions of Section 1191 of this code, then the defendant shall be entitled to a new trial. If the court shall refuse to hear a defendant's motion for a new trial or when made shall neglect to determine such motion before pronouncing judgment or the making of an order granting probation, then the defendant shall be entitled to a new trial.'

Defendant asserts that he is automatically entitled to a new trial under the circumstances. (Citing People v. Prudencio, 93 Cal.App. 241, 269 P. 698; In re Rothrock, 14 Cal.2d 34, 92 P.2d 634; People v. Sarazzawski, 27 Cal.2d 7, 161 P.2d 934.)

It is the contention of the attorney general that the evidence in this case was so overwhelmingly in favor of the verdict that the question of insufficiency of the evidence could not be properly raised, and that there were no errors of law involved; that accordingly no prejudicial error arose by the failure of the trial court to rule upon the motion for new trial; that the right to have a ruling upon the motion as presented was waived by the failure of the defendant's counsel to call to the court's attention the fact that he had made a motion for a new trial and desired to argue it; furthermore, that as part of this waiver, defendant, and his counsel, when asked if there was any legal cause to show why judgment should not be pronounced, stated that there was none. (Citing such authority as People v. Beatcher, 136 Cal.App. 337, 28 P.2d 943; People v. Dillard, 168 Cal.App.2d 158, 335 P.2d 702.)

A mere reading of the testimony of the witnesses, including that of defendant, and On January 5, 1962, after the sexual psychopathy examination and the return of defendant, the probation report was considered. Nothing was said by anyone, including defendant and his counsel, as to the motion for new trial. Defendant's counsel did not ask to argue the motion or point out any reasons why a new trial should be granted.

the medical testimony, leaves no doubt of the sufficiency of the evidence to support the verdict. This is conceded by counsel for defendant. No errors of law are claimed or pointed out by defendant other than the one here raised and our search reveals none. It is quite apparent therefrom that the trial judge would have been fully authorized to deny a motion for a new trial based on these grounds. It does not therefore affirmatively appear from the oral motion made or contemplated, i. e., 'I would like to enter a motion for new trial on all statutory grounds' that the motion was meritorious. Apparently, the trial judge considered the motion as having been made and he continued both the motion and the probation hearing to a subsequent date. Counsel for defendant then indicated that he would like to argue the motion on that day.

On denial of the application for probation, the court then asked the defendant if he had any legal cause to show why judgment should not be pronounced at that time and defendant's counsel replied, 'No legal cause.' No mention was made of any pending motion for new trial and no request was made to be heard on the motion. The court's attention was not called to this omission. Now, for the first time on this appeal, defendant raises the question.


'The doctrine of waiver is generally applicable to all the rights and privileges to which a person is legally entitled, whether secured by contract, conferred by statute, or guaranteed by the constitution, if right or privilege to be waived rests in an individual and is intended for his sole benefit.' (51 Cal.Jur.2d sec. 5, pp. 311-313.)

See also Brownrigg v. DeFrees, 196 Cal. 534, 238 P. 714 (Statute of Limitations); People v. Manriquez, 188 Cal. 602, 606, 206 P. 63, 20 A.L.R. 1441 (time for pronouncing judgment).

Here, defenda...

To continue reading

Request your trial
13 cases
  • Carmel Valley Fire Protection Dist. v. State of California
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 19 d4 Fevereiro d4 1987
    ...744, 752, 2 Cal.Rptr. 662.) The doctrine of waiver applies to rights and privileges afforded by statute. (People v. Murphy (1962) 207 Cal.App.2d 885, 888, 24 Cal.Rptr. State now contends to be an aggrieved party and seeks to dispute the Board's findings. However, it failed to seek judicial ......
  • People v. Lindsay, Cr. 4285
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 27 d3 Maio d3 1964
    ...outcome of the trial, and then, if he loses, raise the issue initially after the jury's verdict has been returned. (People v. Murphy, 207 Cal.App.2d 885, 890, 24 Cal.Rptr. 803; People v. Duncan, 175 Cal.App.2d[227 Cal.App.2d 503] 372, 382-383, 346 P.2d 521.) An exception to the general rule......
  • People v. Asher, Cr. 6623
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 12 d4 Junho d4 1969
    ...of a lack of communication between themselves, and a misunderstanding with the court. The case is similar to People v. Murphy (1967) 207 Cal.App.2d 885, 24 Cal.Rptr. 803. There 'defendant consented to the hearing of his motion for a new trial together with the hearing on the question of pro......
  • Gonzales, In re, Cr. 2606
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 9 d3 Novembro d3 1966 the court with statutory procedures also may be waived. (In re Oxidean, 195 Cal.App.2d 814, 818, 16 Cal.Rptr. 193; People v. Murphy, 207 Cal.App.2d 885, [246 Cal.App.2d 302] 888, 24 Cal.Rptr. 803; People v. Manriquez, 188 Cal. 602, 606, 206 P. 63, 20 A.L.R. The hearing to determine addic......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT