Defense Objects to Court Protective Order for Mom, without Mom’s Input


By Alexander Ramirez

WOODLAND, CA – Yolo County Deputy Public Defender Martha Sequeira here last week told Yolo County Superior Court Judge Daniel Maguire he was granting a stayaway order for a defendant’s mother without the mother even knowing about it.

Ronald Herman Hess was in Yolo County court on a count of assault, unlawful entry of house/dwelling, and vandalism, for which a Criminal Protective Order was requested by Hess’ brother on behalf of their mother.

The order was issued by Judge Maguire, much to the dismay of public defender Sequeira, who argued that while the order was being requested by the brother of the defendant, it would also affect the mother without her input.

It was also noted the mother of the defendant may have issues with dementia, another point that Sequeira believed should be taken into consideration when it comes to the CPO.

However, the prosecution said Hess allegedly claimed that before his mom dies, “I’m going to pull up to (the brother’s) car and shoot him and his wife.”

The CPO was also requested to protect the brother and the wife, but the main complaint from defense counsel was the part of the CPO that affected the defendant’s mom, yet did not have any input from the mother.

The court would be keeping him (the defendant) away from his mom with dementia even though she wasn’t consulted, said PD Sequeira.

Even after the pushback from the defense counsel, the court still ordered the stayaway, but the judge noted he was willing to check the status of the CPO when it came to the mother and her thoughts on it when they convene on April 7 for a pretrial conference.

Hess was released on his own recognizance.

This case occurred after nearly an hour and a half of the court not being able to proceed with matters because of the lack of a court reporter being present. Some cases were heard when the defendant approved of continuing without the court reporter.

Alexander Ramirez is a third-year Political Science major at the University of California, Davis. He hopes to hone his writing skills in preparation for the inevitable time of graduation.

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