By Mairead Perez
SANTA BARBARA, CA – Leonardo Ramos appeared before Judge Pauline Maxwell here in Santa Barbara County Superior Court this week via Zoom, requesting to be released from jail to return to his family after spending 64 days in county jail for two driving under the influence (DUI) charges, battery against his parents and resisting arrest.
The battery charges against his parents—to whom he’d be released if the judge agreed—complicated matters.
Deputy District Attorney Diane Dills expressed concern regarding Ramos returning to live with his parents because of the battery cases involving them.
Ramos is accused of pushing his mother while threatening to kill her and allegedly hitting his father on a separate occasion; in addition, Ramos was charged with resisting arrest when he refused to let go of his father when police arrived.
Assistant Public Defender Giulia Moore argued the charges against Ramos were misdemeanors and there were no resulting injuries.
More pressingly, she said, he had nowhere else to go, since he was not deemed eligible for in-patient treatment through the county. Instead, Project Recovery was what was deemed “medically appropriate” for Ramos.
DDA Dills thought that it would not be productive to release Ramos to his parents and “hope for the best,” given his allegedly violent behavior toward them, and expressed concern he would drive under the influence again.
She instead proposed seeking a private residential treatment facility or keeping him in custody longer.
PD Moore pointed out that a private in-patient treatment program was not financially feasible for her client and assured Judge Maxwell that both he and his parents were dedicated to aid his recovery.
Ramos’ mother, who was present in the courtroom, came forward to speak on her son’s behalf and ask for his release with the help of a court interpreter. “He has never hurt anyone…I don’t know why they said that,” she told the court.
Judge Maxwell decided that Ramos would be allowed to return home with his parents on the condition that he seeks treatment and returns to court Oct. 28.