Trial Begins Tuesday for Man Accused of Assault with Pair of Scissors


By Kathryn Wood

WOODLAND, CA – The trial of a man accused of threatening people with a deadly weapon—a pair of scissors—begins jury selection here in Yolo County Superior Court Tuesday (April 6) after both sides dealt with pretrial motions Monday.

Judge Dave Rosenberg Monday scored a win for the defense by refusing to allow a 911 phone call to be admitted as evidence.

Judge Rosenberg said jury selection will begin with a first panel of 55 people, and may go until Wednesday morning.

Defendant Louis Ortiz—who has previous convictions in 2009 and 201—is charged with assault with a deadly weapon, threat to commit crime resulting in death or great bodily injury from use of a deadly weapon, and use of a deadly weapon other than a firearm.

The weapon, as stated, was a pair of scissors. This incident took place in West Sacramento in the street of a residential neighborhood.

The court played the 911 dispatch call from one witness, who stated that there was “a guy who charged a couple of people” in the neighborhood, but had not touched anyone yet and was “threatening people about to hit them.”

The noises in the call were very chaotic with a number of people screaming in the background. The caller added that the defendant’s behavior began in the morning.

Judge Rosenberg sided with the defense and ruled to dismiss this call from the trial and suggested that the caller could be brought in as a witness if necessary.

Defense attorney Richard Van Zandt noted that Ortiz’ wife said he has bipolar disorder and mental health issues, which are relevant for sentencing purposes if he is convicted of a crime.

Van Zandt mentioned that he has 14 witnesses that will be brought in for the trial.

The trial will begin with jury selection on Tuesday at 9 a.m. in Dept. 2 at Yolo County Superior Court.

Kathryn Wood is a third year at UC Davis, majoring in Political Science-Public Service and minoring in Professional Writing and Environmental Policy Analysis and Planning. She is from Petaluma, California.

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