MCLE Self-Assessment Test
Answer the following questions after reading the article on "three
strikes." Use the answer form provided to send
the test, along with a $20 processing fee, to the State Bar. Please allow
at least eight weeks for MCLE certificates to reach you in the mail.
A conviction, for purposes of a chargeable strike prior that is not
a wobbler, occurs when the defendant pleads guilty or upon a verdict of
Two prior serious or violent felony convictions must be separately
brought and tried in order to be alleged as two strikes.
Any information charging a defendant with a crime alleged to have been
committed on Jan. 1, 1994, and alleging two serious felony priors, exposes
the defendant to 25 years to life as a punishment.
Prior convictions suffered on or before the enactment of the three
strikes law are strikes for purposes of pleading and sentencing.
A juvenile adjudication which did not involve a jury verdict is no
longer considered a strike for purposes of pleading and sentencing on an
The court must hear the defendant's motion to strike a prior on Boykin-Tahl
grounds even if the defendant was represented by counsel at the prior proceeding.
The prosecution must plead and prove strike priors at the preliminary
The superior court judge may use Penal Code §17 to reduce wobblers
to misdemeanors where strike priors are alleged.
The court can reduce a wobbler to a misdemeanor solely on the basis
of the judge's personal antipathy for the strike law.
It is legally appropriate for the court or prosecution to bargain with
a defendant for a guilty plea in exchange for the court dismissing a strike
A prior conviction expunged pursuant to Penal Code §1203.4 is
no longer a strike prior for purposes of charging.
A defendant, convicted of murder with one or more strike priors found
to be true, is sentenced under Penal Code §1170.12 rather than Penal
A preliminary hearing transcript cannot be used to prove a strike prior
conviction on the grounds it is hearsay.
Trial transcripts are admissible to prove a strike prior conviction,
even if the jury hung.
The prosecution or the defense may call live witnesses to prove or
disprove the serious nature of a prior felony conviction.
A carjacking (Penal Code §215) with personal use of a firearm
(Penal Code §12022.5) committed before June 1, 1993, is not a strike
A felony conviction is not a strike prior if the court stayed the sentence
pursuant to Penal Code §654.
If a defendant is convicted of a violation of Penal Code §215,
carjacking, the enhancement that he personally used a firearm and that
he suffered a prior Penal Code §211 conviction are found to be true,
the base term of 3-5-9 years and enhancement punishment of 4-5-10 years
is doubled because of the prior conviction, and five years is then added.
Subordinate terms are doubled if the defendant has suffered a strike
A defendant, convicted of a sexual assault crime where the enhancement
alleging the defendant used a dangerous and deadly weapon is found to be
true by the trier of fact and where a prior serious fel-ony conviction
is found to be true, is sentenced under both the strike law (Penal Code
§1170.12) and the one strike sex law (Penal Code §667.61).
This activity has been approved for Minimum Continuing Legal Education
credit by the State Bar of California in the amount of 1 hour.
The State Bar of California certifies that this activity conforms to the
standards for approved education activities prescribed by the rules and
regulations of the State Bar of California governing minimum continuing legal education.