Mother of Three, Associated with a Man Charged with Domestic Violence, Given Pretrial Release

By Carson Eschen and Eric Rodriguez

SANTA BARBARA, CA – A deputy public defender argued here in Santa Barbara County Superior Court Wednesday that a mother’s pretrial release conditions were too stringent and that they were wrongfully based on acts that were committed not by her but by a defendant in a related case.

Danisha Michelle Figueroa is being charged with conspiracy to commit a crime, and accessory to a crime. 

During the hearing, Figueroa’s public defender, Brian Mathis, stated that he believed the pretrial report was primarily describing the actions of David Lamar, not Figueroa. The only allegations that he believed were actually being levied against Figueroa were surrounding the attempted deletion of evidence. 

Lamar’s case—in which he is being charged with threatening a crime with intent to terrorize, commit battery, and prevent/dissuade witness victim from giving testimony—is associated with Figueroa’s case but his charges are not her charges, maintained the defense attorney. 

According to the defense attorney, Figueroa allegedly discussed deleting incriminating evidence during a jail call, and agreed to deleting such evidence by accessing Lamar’s email and attempting to delete the incriminating evidence. 

PD Mathis claims her allegations fall under minor cyber-crimes, as opposed to the felony charges in Lamar’s case. 

Taken alongside Figueroa’s status as a mother of three children—14, 12, and 3—Mathis requested that she be released with pretrial supervision without a GPS tracking device. He pointed out that the use of GPS tracking devices was unnecessary as Figueroa was complying in any way possible. 

He also argued that GPS tracking incurred a significant cost, which he believed to be unnecessary for this case. 

He also objected to a clause giving up Figureoa’s Fourth Amendment right and a clause to abstain from drugs and alcohol, stating that they also didn’t pertain to the current charges.

The judge agreed to the release, but still insisted on the GPS tracking device and other terms and conditions proposed by the prosecution, noting that she had sometimes left her kids with their father to meet up with Lamar. 

He also cited previous incidents, occurring five years prior, where Figueroa had failed to show up for court. 

Figueroa is expected to report to probation on Oct. 14 for supervised release. 

Her case has also been placed under the same judge that is overseeing Lamar’s case to make due process more efficient, as proposed by the district attorney. 

Figueroa is scheduled to appear at the court on Oct. 22 for a hearing setting date. 

About The Author

Carson Eschen is a fourth year Political Science and Philosophy double major at UC Santa Barbara. He plans on becoming a lawyer.

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