Judge Grants Defendant a Second Chance to Complete Treatment Program after Previously Being Kicked Out

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By Simran Chahal

WOODLAND, CA – “J____” * here in Yolo County Superior Court Monday was accepted into a treatment facility after previously failing to complete it, with Judge Peter Williams gives the defendant a second chance to complete the program under supervised release.

In November of 2020, J____ was charged with “theft/unauthorized use of vehicle,” “possession of controlled substances,” and “receiving stolen property.”

Deputy Public Defender Erin Dacayanan spoke on the matter, noting “[the defendant] wrote a very long, nice letter to the person who runs the program requesting to be let back in.” Upon receiving the letter, the program coordinator decided to let the defendant back in.

While at the treatment facility, “he’s not allowed to have even one mishap…he understands all of that and he is asking for his release in SOR (Supervised Own Recognizance),” explained Dacayanan.

Judge Williams expressed, “It’s frustrating when you get released to a program, then you do something at the program. Then, it makes us all look bad.”

Judge Williams further commented, “The only thing that could make us look worse is if I put you back on the program and then you do something again. Not only does that hurt you, but it also hurts everyone else that Ms. Dacayanan tries to make a pitch for in the future.”

DDA Jesse Richardson discussed how the defendant has another case in a different county where they are deciding on the idea of a drug court.
“So, it does seem apparent to me that [the defendant] is in need of some sort of treatment help. I have been hesitant about agreeing to [J____’s[ release seeing as to what happened last time, but I am willing to give him one more shot,” expressed Richardson.

Richardson added, in addition to supervised release, he would like terms to include that the defendant is searchable and testable for drugs, searchable for stolen property, and he abides by the treatment facility conditions.

Richardson commented, “If J____ is not able to successfully stay at [the treatment facility] and complete what he is doing there, I can’t imagine that would be looked upon fondly by…Placer County.”

Judge Williams also added, “Maybe not by the courts, either.”

Dacayanan remarked that last time the defendant was released on “straight OR” (Own Recognizance) while at the program. “This time he is requesting additional assistance from probation that he be placed on supervised [release], so there can be one additional layer of monitoring.

“He did take the initiative. I did not do this for him. He reached out to the program representative himself, asking for this and explaining to her why he deserved a second chance…She’s not the kind of person who deals with a lot of shenanigans,” expressed Dacayanan.

Judge Williams stated, “I’m going to allow you to give it one more shot…If you have an addiction problem, it makes everything more difficult. Rules are hard to follow when you have an addiction. Given the additional requirement I’m going to put on you, I’m asking you: do you think you can do it?”

The defendant stated, “I was a criminal before I was an addict, but the addiction was a catalyst,” and he believed the program could help him.

Judge Williams expressed, “My concern is it didn’t work the first time…That being said, you get a second chance. There wouldn’t be a third chance. So, if you don’t get it right this time, plan on going through the judicial process.”

After hearing the defendant and the public defender, judge ordered all previous trial dates to be vacated and the defendant be released to the treatment program on supervised release.

The next hearing to check in is set for Nov. 24.

NOTE: The name used here is not the accused’s real name, per The Vanguard’s new policy of not identifying the real names in lower level misdemeanor cases. https://www.davisvanguard.org/2021/11/vanguard-to-remove-reference-to-names-of-those-accused-in-court-watch-coverage/

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About The Author

Simran is a senior at UC Davis, majoring in Political Science. She is originally from Ceres, CA.

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