By Ned Meiners
SACRAMENTO – Earlier this month, Ramitesh Kumar allegedly fired a gun at his former girlfriend over ten times while pursuing her in a car chase.
On Monday, at a bail hearing in a Sacramento Superior Court, Kumar’s attorney, Patricia Ann Campi, submitted a statement from the victim asking the court for leniency.
Campi said of the victim, “She has known [the defendant] for several years. As horrific as this event was, it’s definitely out of character for Mr. Kumar.”
On March 4, the former girlfriend of Kumar was with a male acquaintance in a parking lot on Calvine Road in Elk Grove when they noticed the defendant pull up nearby and allege that he retrieved a gun from his trunk.
According to prosecutor Jenna Saavedra, the victims swerved in and out of traffic, through red lights, and onto the sidewalk to evade Kumar but were eventually cornered in a Walgreen’s parking lot. At this time, the defendant left his vehicle, approached his former girlfriend and her companion, and shot directly at them several times.
Miraculously, the victims were able to maneuver their vehicle around Kumar and escape the scene unhurt.
“This is extreme reckless, dangerous behavior,” stated Saavedra. “I understand the female victim is supportive of him, but it’s my duty to protect her as well, and I believe that can only be achieved at no bail status.”
Judge Scott Tedman agreed with the prosecutor, considering Kumar a threat to public safety despite the victim’s wishes. “While I understand and appreciate the perspectives of each of the individuals who wrote letters on behalf of Mr. Kumar, the alleged facts of this case are as dangerous as it can get, and it is fortunate that no one was injured or killed.”
Kumar, who is 26 years old, had no previous criminal record until a DUI this February, merely a month before the incident. This made little difference in the eyes of the court.
“While there didn’t appear to be any prior history that would lead anyone to believe that this could happen, the fact that it did, in this court’s judgment, makes Mr. Kumar as great, or a greater risk, as someone who at least has some history,” stated Judge Tedman.
After the hearing, defense attorney Campi asked the court for a psychological evaluation, which could provide evidence for an insanity plea or a defense based on Kumar’s emotional state. Judge Tedman replied that the court would not supply one.
Ned Meiners is a Legal Studies student at City College San Francisco. Originally from Maine, he currently resides on Bernal Hill in San Francisco.
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