Bail Fairness Center of Court Arguments – Judge Refuses to Budge, Keeps Bail at $250,000


By Carlin Ross

SACRAMENTO – Good arguments were made here in Sacramento County Superior Court, Dept. 3 this week delving into the bail issue—and what’s fair or not.

But after defense counsel Damien Jovel made his case, Judge Geoffrey Goodman kept bail at $250,000 for Anthony Grandberry, who is charged with assault with intent to cause great bodily injury and robbery.

According to Jovel, the 18-year-old defendant was alleged to have met with the complaining witness after the two were contacted on a site called “Offer Up.” Grandberry was accused of passing a book off as a PlayStation for $150 from the witness, who angrily chased after the defendant once handing over his money.

According to the facts of the case, Grandberry then turned around and started firing multiple rounds at the witness.

Originally set at $250,000, Jovel asked the judge to lower the bail to $25,000 after considering In re Kenneth Humphrey—a case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court that questions equal protection among the incarcerated and deems the act unconstitutional for judges to set a bail amount without considering the defendant’s ability to pay said bail.

As stated by Jovel, “the court must look into the factors of clients’ ability to pay,” adding that in addition to a $25,000 bail fee, Grandberry would be willing to “adhere to any other conditions of probation.”

Immediately after posing the new bail amount, Judge Goodman proclaimed, “I’m not following the logic. If the defendant’s parents can come up with $25,000, how do I know they can’t come up with $250,000?”

“Because they would have bailed him out by now. This is the amount I think they could pay,” Jovel said, maintaining that the family may be able to pay up to $50,000, but it would severely and negatively impact the family’s way of life.  He also added the fact that no firearm, evidence of violence, or bullet shells were found at the scene of the crime.

At this point, Deputy District Attorney Kendra Havlik chimed in to remind the court that they’re “supposed to consider the facts of the matter as true. The fact that a firearm wasn’t found shouldn’t play into the court’s consideration of bail.”

She then informed the court that the defendant was on probation from a misdemeanor containing similar firearm allegations, just 11 days before this charge.

Finally, Havlik corrected the record and stated Grandberry was taking the witness’s money without giving him a PS4. Though the People reduced Grandberry’s offer from 12 years to five years in state prison, Havlik said the defendant was a danger to the community because he had access to and used a firearm while on probation.

In the end, Judge Goodman denied the bail motion and set a preliminary hearing for March 9 at 8:30 a.m. in Dept. 3.

“The factor I consider most significantly,” he said, “is the fact that the defendant possessed a gun within 11 days of being placed on probation for a similar case.”

Carlin Ross is a senior at Santa Clara University who double majors in English and Philosophy. She’s originally from Bozeman, Montana.

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