Judge Balks on Release without Bail Despite Defense Argument Former Prosecutor Agreed to Drop Certain Charges 

By Michael Apfel

WOODLAND, CA – A man here requested to be released on his own recognizance on no bail, but was denied by Judge Tom Dyer in Yolo County Superior Court this week after the accused received several misdemeanor charges following a previous release.

The man had been previously charged with one count felony violation of community supervision following release, one count misdemeanor destruction of evidence, one count misdemeanor resisting or obstructing a police officer, one count misdemeanor unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, one count felony grand theft, four counts of misdemeanor shoplifting, one count misdemeanor disorderly conduct, and one count misdemeanor possession of a controlled substance.

The defense cited the nonviolent nature of the man’s crimes, arguing he be released on his own recognizance.

“[The defense] is asking the court to consider releasing him on his own recognizance on all of the cases,” the public defender said. “It looks like part of the problem is that he was not released on custody on the last court date is because he had already been OR’d on earlier misdemeanors and picked up these new ones. I know he picked up new misdemeanors when he was last OR’d, but his misdemeanors were not violent offenses or public safety offenses.”

The defense noted a previous deputy district attorney considering dropping certain misdemeanor charges and not following through.

“My understanding is that when his last case was resolved on Dec. 6, the district attorney at that time made some statements about not charging some of the misdemeanors that are currently charged,” the defense said. “I understand that they are charged, but they were also aware of some of those cases prior to the other disposition, and we thought we had a resolution in all of them.”

But Deputy District Attorney Sherri Bridgeforth was not willing to offer release, emphasizing the recent nature of some of the misdemeanors following his previous release.

“We would object to OR,” said Bridgeforth. “The defendant has picked up at least two new cases last month just a few days after his last court appearance. We would ask the court to consider what was in the PRCS report and submit on that.”

Judge Dyer ruled in favor of the prosecution, denying the defense’s request for release, and further court proceedings were subsequently scheduled for later in February.

About The Author

Michael Apfel is a second year at USC majoring in Legal Studies and minoring in Sports Media Industries. He plans on law school after his undergraduate studies looking to work in social justice.

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