California Court of Appeal, Fifth District
49 Cal.Rptr.2d 86 (1996)
Bronico D. Jeffers (defendant), a convicted felon, entered a gun shop and asked to speak with an employee, Richard Maness. Charles Bodoh, the shop’s owner, informed Jeffers that Maness was busy and offered to help Jeffers. Jeffers handed Bodoh a wrapped box and told him that he was making a delivery for a friend. Bodoh unwrapped the box as Jeffers began to leave the shop. Bodoh stopped Jeffers and informed him that the box contained a .380 caliber handgun and that he would need Jeffers’ name, address, and telephone number in order to enter the gun into the shop’s logbook. After Jeffers provided the information he left the shop. Shortly thereafter, it was learned that the gun’s serial numbers had been filed off which was reported by Bodoh to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF). A detective with the sheriff’s department, Richard Beaudreaux, subsequently confiscated the handgun and contacted Jeffers. Jeffers told Beaudreaux that he had taken the gun to the shop for a friend, Richard Kent Johnson. However, Jeffers could not tell Beaudreaux how to locate Johnson and the detective was unable to locate Johnson after a brief search. Jeffers was indicted for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in violation of California’s Penal Code § 12021. At trial, Jeffers argued that he had no knowledge of what was inside the box when he delivered it to the gun shop. Jeffers also requested that the court instruct the jury that § 12021 is not violated automatically when an ex-felon comes into possession of a firearm, without knowledge that he has a firearm, but later learns of the firearm. The court refused to give the instruction and Jeffers was convicted. He appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Stone, J.)
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