Following a No Contest Plea, Judge Grants Brief Release so Defendant Can See His Children

By Matthew Torres

WOODLAND, CA – Judge Stephen Mock, here in Yolo County Superior Court late last week, was apparently touched by a convicted man’s request and granted him the ability to speak with his children before entering jail.

The accused is charged with using the personal identity information of another person to obtain goods. In late March, the accused pleaded no contest, accepting the conviction while avoiding a factual admission of guilt.

In his plea, he made a request to the court to be released for a brief period of time to see his children before going to prison.

Due to COVID-19 safety, there have been changes regarding in-person visitation in prisons. This comes after widespread COVID-19 outbreaks in California jails and prisons that resulted in suspension of in-person visits.

According to an article by the Sacramento Bee, “the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation is beginning a phased reopening plan that allows limited visitation starting… April 10.”

To the knowledge of Deputy Public Defender Daniel Hutchinson the jails are still not permitting any visitation, but they will hopefully begin Zoom visits for families soon.

Judge Mock considered the request made by the accused and was “struck by the sincerity” of it. He granted the man a 24-hour release before he must appear before this court the following afternoon.

However, before releasing the accused, the judge warned him that if he failed to appear there would be significant sanctions.

About The Author

Matthew Torres is a fourth year Criminal Justice major at California State University, Sacramento expecting to graduate in Spring 2022. After graduation he will be continuing his studies in law school.

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