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People v. Cua, A123756

By FindLaw Staff on January 04, 2011 11:28 AM

Challenge to the scientific validity of DNA evidence used to convict defendant for first degree murders

People v. Cua, A123756, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for first degree murders of his employers and jury's finding all enhancement allegations to be true, and the scientific validity of DNA evidence and his trial counsels' failure to object to its admission.


First, the court held that, although defendant has forfeited his objections to the DNA evidence, in light of his claim of ineffective assistance of counsel, the evidence was properly admitted, and the defendant has failed to meet his burden to show that the court erred in not excluding the evidence sua sponte.  Next, the court held that, although defendant has forfeited his claim of prosecutorial misconduct, defendant fails to show how the proffer by the prosecution of opinions rendered by qualified experts using scientific accepted methods of analysis constitutes a pattern of egregious misconduct, or an attempt to use deceptive or reprehensible methods to persuade the jury.  The court went onto hold that, because there was no error in the admission of the DNA evidence, defendant's claim that his counsel were ineffective necessarily fails since he has failed to show any prejudice.  Lastly, the trial court properly considered the totality of the evidence in denying defendant's motion for a new trial.

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