One Trial Avoided, Another Maybe Not in Two Misdemeanor Cases

By Brandon Blanco

WOODLAND, CA – Judge Tom M. Dyer of Yolo County Superior Court this week set two different hearing dates for January on two different misdemeanor cases—one case is headed for diversion and no trial, while the other may be in front of a jury sometime in 2022.

(NOTE: The Vanguard policy is to not identify the real names of misdemeanor accused in most cases. The names used below are not their true names.)

In one of the first cases, “J—” appeared for a warrant hearing, accused of trespassing on closed lands and disorderly conduct while intoxicated on Sept. 2.

The office of the Yolo District Attorney proposed a restorative justice partnership and will dismiss the pending case if the defendant completes the program, stating, “It’s a diversion program which is an alternative to the court process. In doing it, you may work with community volunteers, you may take an online class but after completion your case will be dismissed.”

Regarding the deal, Judge Dyer added, “J—, you can enroll in the restorative justice program, you might take a class online, and you may meet with members of the community… I might give you one month to enroll in that program and six months to complete the program, if that’s all completed in six months, the charges would be dismissed.”

Judge Dyer ordered a diversion hearing date on Jan. 5, 2022, for proof of enrollment in the diversion program and June 1 for completing the diversion program at 9 am. The pending warrant was also set aside and J— was released on his own recognizance.

In the second case “Z—-” appeared in a re-arraignment hearing, charged with two misdemeanors of possession of controlled substance and possession of narcotic paraphernalia. He also was charged with failure to appear in court and violating his misdemeanor probation.

Judge Dyer told Z—- , “if you cannot afford to hire your own attorney, sir, I will appoint the public defender to represent you. Would you like me to appoint the public defender?”

Z—- agreed, “Yes, your Honor.”

Deputy Public Defender Danielle Craig was appointed, and agreed to a Jan. 5, 2022, hearing. Z—- was released on his own recognizance.

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