COURT WATCH: Prosecution Wants Bail, No OR Release for Unhoused Man with 3 Trespassing Misdemeanors – Judge Disagrees, Releases Man 

By Audrey Sawyer

SACRAMENTO, CA — The accused—who has three misdemeanor matters of trespassing and occupying property without consent of an owner, and is housing challenged—”ought to pay some variation of bail,” insisted Deputy District Attorney Kevin Higgins last week in Sacramento County Superior Court.

But the court disagreed, and released the man pretrial into a service program. 

Deputy Public Defender Kate Carlson requested the accused be released on his own recognizance, and placed with a particular program that provides services, arguing that it would “nip charges in the bud.” 

DPD Carlson added that the accused has been homeless and requires support and had not received any transportation or access to any housing or mental health services. 

Prosecutor Higgins referenced the accused possessing 10 bench warrants previously with failure to appear on trespassing cases as a reason why he does not want him released on OR status.

DDA Higgins, stating he was physically present when the accused was caught alongside law enforcement officers, claimed the accused had trespassed into a church, and that the place was “absolutely thrashed.” 

DDA Higgins added the church had been repeatedly broken into and that the church classroom, which was originally secure, was broken into by the accused who had a key. He pointed out that the classroom had a mattress and candles belonging to the accused, who kept coming back. 

The prosecutor said the accused has not shown any ability to show up to court on his own, and that he is unsure the accused, even with assistance from a services-based program, would appear as ordered in court. 

Judge Alin Cintean said any variation of bail would be considered the same as no bail, and that the accused is unhoused and currently without any resources. 

While Judge Cintean acknowledged that there were previous failures to appear and that there is a pattern, Judge Cintean suggested a services program picking up the accused could bring him hope that the help is there for him, and will end the string of arrests. Cintean issued a 50-yard stayaway order from the church.

About The Author

Audrey is a senior at UC San Diego majoring in Political Science (Comparative Politics emphasis). After graduation, Audrey plans on attending graduate school and is considering becoming a public defender.

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