Skip navigation
× You have 2 more free articles available this month. Subscribe today.

California Court of Appeal Grants Increased Award of Conduct Credit to Jail Detainee

The California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, has held that an amendment to Penal Code section 4019, which increased the amount of presentence conduct credit to which a jail detainee is entitled, operates to the benefit of detainees whose custody time was served after the effective date of the amendment.

Effective January 25, 2010, amended section 4019 provided for day-for-day conduct credit (in two-day increments). That is, if a detainee does not misbehave, "a term of four days will be deemed to have been served for every two days spent in actual custody."

Prior to January 25, 2010, section 4019 provided for a lesser amount of good conduct credit, "one-for-two" (in four-day increments).

Stephen Payton committed his offense (possession of a controlled substance) prior to section 4019's amendment. He was sentenced to probation, which he violated, however, after section 4019's amendment.

Once in custody, Payton filed a motion to receive day-for-day conduct credit, which the Superior Court of Orange County denied, citing the fact that his offense pre-dated section 4019's amendment.

On appeal, the Attorney General conceded that the trial court's denial of additional conduct credits was error. The Court of Appeal accepted the concession.

PLN readers should note that effective September 27, 2010, section 4019 was amended again, restoring presentence conduct credit to the levels in effect prior to the January 25, 2010 amendment. See: Payton v. Superior Court (People), 202 Cal.App.4th 1187, 136 Cal.Rptr.3d 129 (Cal.App. 4 Dist. 2011).

As a digital subscriber to Prison Legal News, you can access full text and downloads for this and other premium content.

Subscribe today

Already a subscriber? Login

Related legal case

Payton v. Superior Court (People)