By Natasha Feuerstein
SACRAMENTO – The victim of three incidents of domestic violence told police officers she was terrified to seek prosecution against the defendant because he would get angry and kill her.
On Monday, Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Scott L. Tedmon set aggregate bail for several cases at a bit more than $1 million—$1,050,00—including for defendant Timothy Holeman, citing the huge danger the defendant poses to the victim and his failure to appear in court for previous charges.
Holeman faces misdemeanor and felony charges in three cases of domestic violence, with one case also involving a felony charge for kidnapping. All three cases pertain to the defendant’s partner.
Deputy District Attorney Teal Ericson relayed the facts of the cases and the defendant’s prior record, noting that she has not received reports detailing an additional conviction in Fresno and another charge in San Luis Obispo.
In June of 2020, the alleged victim’s 14-year-old son called 911 and reported that the defendant slapped the victim and wrapped his arm around her neck while the victim shouted that she “could not breathe.”
According to Ericson, Holeman and the victim’s son were engaged in an argument, and the defendant threatened to hit the son. The victim stepped in and said, “No, please hit me instead.”
That is when Holeman backhanded the victim. She ended up with visible cuts inside her lip and visible redness to both sides of her neck following the incident, said the DDA.
Based on the context of the incident and the injuries sustained by the victim, Ericson asked the court to upgrade this case from a misdemeanor charge to a felony charge.
After the incident, the victim told police she did not want prosecution because she was scared of the defendant and the defendant’s family and any retribution.
The son corroborated that statement, saying his mother was too scared of the defendant to speak up. The son was actually the one who pursued a restraining order against Holeman following the incident.
After Holeman’s arrest, he was bailed out. Ericson believes the victim bailed him out. Holeman then failed to appear in court the following month, and a bench warrant was issued.
The second case involved an incident that occurred a few months later, on Aug. 24, 2020. Holeman was charged with kidnapping, domestic violence, a restraining order violation, and contempt of court.
The defendant and victim were arguing because the victim said she was not willing to fulfill his “very serious sexual demands.” The defendant then threatened her with violence, said the DDA.
After asking the victim to get out of the vehicle they were sitting in so he could “give her a hug,” the victim got out and was headbutted three times by the defendant, continued the police report, adding that Holeman then forced her back into the vehicle, grabbed her by the throat, and punched her in the face.
While she was talking to the police after this second incident, the victim said, “I don’t want to talk about what happened to my face,” which had bruising and injuries. She continued, “I don’t want to say anything that will go on the record because I don’t want my husband to see it. He will get angry, and he will kill me.”
The victim further explained to police that she would rather deal with it herself even though she is “terrified” because she is scared of him. “I know he will come back here and kill me,” she told police.
Holeman was arrested on that date of Aug. 24, and he bailed out less than a week later. At that time, his bench warrant for the first case was recalled. After he bailed out, Holeman failed to appear in court again.
The next case involved an incident that occurred on Nov. 30 of 2020 while he was out on bail for the other two cases.
The victim reported to law enforcement that the defendant hit her in the face and the back of her head several times with a closed fist. The defendant then choked her from behind and constricted her airway.
The victim said she could not breathe and felt dizzy. Once he stopped, the victim said she coughed up blood.
The defendant threatened her, saying that she deserves to die, said the victim, who told police officers, “He never said how he will kill me, but I know he will eventually.” Officers observed purple bruising on the victim’s collarbone, wrists, and both shins.
Holeman also took some of her belongings, including her wallet, keys, and car. Since he fled the scene before officers arrived, a warrant for Holeman’s arrest was issued after the complaint was filed on the victim’s behalf.
Holeman has since been bailed out.
Based on what Ericson summarized for the court, she argued that the defendant is incredibly dangerous to the general community and to the victim and her son in particular.
“There have been numerous reports that the victim is afraid he will kill her…in every case she says she does not want to cooperate because she is so terrified,” Ericson said.
Additionally, Ericson believes Holeman is a flight risk, given his prior record of failing to appear in court.
Ericson also said Holeman does not take any of the court’s orders seriously, and she “has zero faith he will follow through” on their recent no contact order.
Ericson asked the court to remand him, claiming he should not be free from custody while these matters are being resolved.
“I wish we could ask for a no bail, but I know he is entitled to bail, so I am asking for at least a million dollars to put him in custody, please,” Ericson concluded.
Assistant Public Defender Alicia Hartley told the judge, “Your Honor, I think $1 million is excessive, and my client is entitled to a reasonable bail.”
At this point, Holeman attempted to speak, but Judge Tedmon quickly warned him not to interrupt.
Hartley continued her argument, pointing out that Holeman was currently present in court. She also explained that the victim has not been supportive of the prosecution.
Hartley concluded that prior bail had been set with Holeman’s failures to appear in mind, as well as his current income level. She asked the court to consider this and not to raise his bail.
After a long pause, Judge Tedmon noted Holeman’s two prior failures to appear in previous cases, but said that his current appearance in court was to his benefit. However, he stated, “There is a continuous pattern of conduct towards this victim that is, in this court’s mind, egregious in terms of what is being proposed.”
In addition, Judge Tedmon explained that after being charged with kidnapping and other charges and while out on bail, Holeman was back in court facing more felony charges of domestic violence. The court also noted that Holeman also has prior convictions in Fresno and San Luis Obispo.
Given the significant danger Holeman poses to the victim and the general community, and not just taking into account the fact that he has prior charges, Judge Tedmon declared that his current bail was inappropriate and therefore forfeited in the prior amounts.
Holeman’s new bail was set at $50,000 in the first case, $750,000 in the second case, and $250,000 in the third case for an aggregate bail of $1,050,000.
Following the court’s decision, Hartley asked to be muted in order to talk with a seemingly agitated Holeman. After a few minutes, Hartley told the judge that Holeman asked the court to “meet him in the middle with bail.”
Judge Tedmon shut down his request, saying, “The court has decided…the bail is set. This is not a negotiation.”
As Judge Tedmon attempted to set a date for further proceedings, Holeman kept interjecting. Hartley repeatedly informed Holeman that the court was not open to negotiate.
Further proceedings were eventually scheduled for the first week of March.
Natasha Feuerstein is a senior at UC Davis majoring in Political Science and minoring in Global Disease Biology. She is originally from Camden, Delaware.
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