Defendant Insists on Defending Self Despite Repeated Warnings from Judge

By Pavan Potti

FRESNO – Tuesday, in Fresno County Superior Court’s Dept. 1, Alex Raina was called to the podium to have his case heard. He was on his own—despite having an arraignment scheduled, there was no attorney present to represent Raina on his case.

It soon became aware to the court, however, that this wasn’t due to the defendant unable to afford a lawyer; he wanted to defend himself.

The defendant asserted that he would be able to manage the case by himself and told the court that, despite not having been in school for a while, he conducted research on how he could fight the case on his own behalf to the best of his ability.

He also added that his intention was to pay restitution and put the incident behind him as soon as possible.

Despite the defendant’s confidence, Judge William Terrence seemed highly skeptical as to whether this would end well for the defendant. He warned the defendant that he would be at a high disadvantage fighting a case against trained and seasoned lawyers.

Terrence further emphasized his point by stating how the defendant had earlier implied that he was not familiar with legal terminology and didn’t understand the meaning of multiple legal terms listed in the case study.

Yet the defendant stayed put on his decision, and the court continued on with the arraignment. After entering a not guilty plea, the court scheduled a pre-trial hearing for October 12.

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About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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