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People v. Howard, S050583

Capital murder conviction affirmed

People v. Howard, S050583, concerned a defendant's challenge to his conviction for first degree murder and attempted second degree robbery and a sentence of death.


The court affirmed both the convictions and the sentence where: 1) defendant's claim that the process used in California for "death qualification" of jurors is unconstitutional is rejected; 2) any error in requiring defendant to wear a stun belt was not prejudicial; 3) the trial court properly admitted the handgun into evidence; 4) the trial court did not err by admitting the autopsy photograph; 5) defendant's challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence of felony murder is rejected; 6) the trial court did not err in its jury instructions; 7) defendant's various penalty phase claims, including his challenge to the death penalty law, are rejected; 8) the trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying a new trial; and 9) the trial court did not err when it refused to hold a competency hearing, and defendant's cumulative error claim is rejected.

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