Probation Request Due to Limited Role In a Crime

In People v. Martinez (1985) 175 Cal.App.3d 881, the defendant was convicted of robbery. The trial court sentenced him to the middle term of three years. Defendant claimed that, because of his limited role in the crime, he should be placed on probation. While the trial court took note of the mitigation evidence offered by the defendant, it also pointed out several aggravating factors relating to the defendant's prior criminal history. Based on this balancing, the trial court determined that it would be justified in imposing the upper term, but instead chose to impose the middle term. On appeal, the defendant claimed the trial court abused its discretion by refusing probation and sentencing him to the middle term. The Court of Appeal found no abuse of discretion because the trial court had read the sentencing report, heard the arguments of counsel, and weighed the aggravating and mitigating circumstances. ( Id., at pp. 895-897.)