Judges Cites Educational Kinship to Defendant, Expunges Reckless Driving Case

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By Jose Medina

WOODLAND – After a long day filled with arraignment hearings, Dept. 1 of Yolo County Superior Court ended on a compassionate note, despite some technical difficulties.

After successfully completing probation without incident, defendant Randall Story asked to have his case expunged. His attorney, Matthew Murillo, motioned to withdraw Story’s guilty plea from 2018, re-enter a plea of not guilty, and dismiss his case.

In 2015 Story was charged with reckless driving and evading a peace officer. In 2018, he was put on probation for two years.

Initially, Murillo experienced technical difficulties while attending the hearing through Zoom. His computer’s camera was broken so he could not be seen by the court and his Zoom crashed at the moment when Judge Peter Williams asked about the lack of a submitted declaration.

Fortunately, Deputy District Attorney Carolyn Palumbo was present in court as the prosecutor and mentioned that she had read the defendant’s declaration and supported the granting of the motion to dismiss Story’s case, noting that he has indicated that he is doing well and does not have any other law violations.

After finally receiving the declaration from Murillo, Judge Williams learned that Story is a lifetime resident of the Bay Area, went to Rice University, earned a PhD in molecular biophysics at Yale, and got a postdoc at Caltech.

Judge Williams expressed compassion toward Story, drawing a comparison between both himself and the defendant by commenting that the defendant’s academic history “sounds a lot like my educational history.”

The court granted the motion to expunge the case in the interest of justice. Judge Williams ended the court session stating that hopefully this expungement will help Story to move forward with his life.

Jose graduated from UC Davis with a BA in Political Science and has interned for the California State Legislature. He is from Rocklin, CA.


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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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