When Does “From” Mean “From?” Court Decision Reaffirms the Meaning of the Word
The crime of discharging a firearm or permitting the discharge of a firearm from a vehicle does not require that the gun actually be fired from inside the vehicle (26100 P.C.)
The defendants and the victim engaged in a heated verbal exchange inside a Bakersfield convenience store. While the victim, his girlfriend and two young children were walking away from the store, one of the defendants drove his vehicle into the opposite traffic lane and stopped within 15 to 20 feet of the victims. A co-defendant got out of the vehicle, and while using the open door as a barricade, began firing multiple shots at the victims standing on the sidewalk. Ten expended casings were found on the street at the shooting scene. He then reentered the vehicle and the pair drove away. No one was injured.
After a 10-day jury trial, the defendant was convicted of willful and malicious discharge of a firearm from a motor vehicle and attempted murder. On the aggregate of all charges, he received a sentence of seven-years-to-life plus 49 years and eight months in prison. He appealed (in part) that 26100 P.C. charge didn’t apply because he was not inside the vehicle when the shooting occurred.