By Tanya Decendario
SACRAMENTO – Defendant Kamonie Barner—facing jail time after he allegedly failed to take anger management classes—claimed in Sacramento County Superior Court Monday that there was clerical error when the written instruction did not require him to attend classes.
Instead, he said, the paperwork told him to get an ankle monitor.
In January of this year, Barner appeared in court and was, he argued, advised to follow the instructions written on the paper. The court told Barner to sign up for 12 anger management classes, but the paperwork suggested an ankle monitor.
So Barner said he followed what was written on the paperwork, as he was advised.
Judge Scott L. Tedmon began the court hearing by stating, “Barner failed to complete the 12 anger management required for dismissal.”
Barner interrupted, “Can I say something right there?”
Judge Tedmon continued, noting that Barned failed to appear or was revoked on two occasions: Jan. 29 and Oct. 27. He added that “that’s what it shows as far as the anger managements are concerned, he is currently doing 54 days straight time… with a projected release of Jan. 12.”
However, Assistant Public Defender Alicia Hartley clarified to the court that Barner’s lack of anger management attendance was, in fact, due—as he insisted—to a clerical error.
PD Hartley said, “Apparently there was some clerical error on his paperwork that indicated something different than what he was told. He tried to clarify that prior to the Jan. 29 date but that clerical error was not fixed.”
She added, “I would’ve asked if he can start the anger management in custody but he’s not on the right floor for that and unfortunately, because of the housing situation, we can’t give clients classes that are not on the proper floor, based on the current pandemic. So that creates that problem.”
PD Hartley further noted that the clerical error was on the paperwork, claiming Barner needed to sign up for an ankle monitor rather than the 12 anger management classes.
Therefore, she proposed an alternate idea for the court to allow Barner one more time to complete 12 anger management classes and further noted, “I would ask that we do that and have him come back within the next month to prove that he signed up for the program.”
Upon hearing the possible clerical error, Deputy District Attorney Jenna Saavedra argued, “But he verbally accepted 12 anger management in court.”
PD Hartley argued, “Everyone told him, ‘Well the paperwork isn’t incorrect, it’s correct and you need to do what you need to do’ so he tried to clarify in trying to explain how the paperwork error caused Barner to become unsure (of what to do).”
DDA Saavedra then noted, “I think I want to continue it.”
Judge Tedmon firmly states, “I want the officers implicitly stated on the record if the People’s position is that the 12 anger managements will be done within six months as a condition of the dismissal then it needs to be stated.”
DDA Saavedra explained that cases can get continued when defendants do not complete the anger management classes, adding that it is in the prosecution’s best interest to require individuals to complete anger management as quickly as possible.
The court agreed, in an effort to figure out the clerical mess, to continue Barner’s possible anger management extension to Jan. 6, 2021.
Tanya Decendario is a third-year student studying Legal Studies at UC Berkeley. She is originally from Sonoma, CA, but currently resides in Albany, CA.
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