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Jess Sullivan

FBI: AK-47 Bandit who hit Solano bank in 2012 has struck again

VACAVILLE — The man who robbed a Vacaville bank more than three years ago as part of a series of armed takeover bank heists has struck again, according to the FBI. The robber, dubbed the AK-47 Bandit by the FBI, robbed the Heartland Community Credit Union in Mason City, Iowa, on Tuesday. The lone male suspect […]

No plea as 2nd suspect in deadly Fairfield shooting appears in court

FAIRFIELD — One of three suspects in the July 22 deadly shooting at a Phoenix Drive apartment complex made his first court appearance Tuesday. Jaime P. Hernandez, 22, had been expected to enter a plea on a felony gun possession charge. That changed when prosecutor Haroon Khan announced that the shooting victim, who had been […]

Solano jurist to receive award from state Judicial Council

FAIRFIELD — The Judicial Council of California in Sacramento announced last week that Judge David E. Power will receive a distinguished service award. The award is the highest honor given by the Judicial Council to judges who have demonstrated extraordinary leadership and made significant contributions to the administration of justice, according to a press release about […]

Judge declares mistrial in penalty phase of Smith murder trial

FAIRFIELD — A second, new jury will decide if a Fairfield man who killed a police officer will receive the death penalty after a mistrial was declared Tuesday. The guilty verdicts reached last week for murder and robbery charges and related special circumstances will stand for Henry A. Smith Jr., who shot and killed Vallejo […]

No plea as suspect in Fairfield shooting appears in court

FAIRFIELD — One of three suspects in the July 22 afternoon shooting at a Phoenix Drive apartment complex made his first court appearance Monday. Leonel G. Flores, 24, did not enter a plea to attempted murder, firearms assault and weapon charges. Instead, Flores, who faces a life sentence if convicted of the attempted murder charge, […]

July 28, 2015 | Posted in Crime-courts | 18 Replies

Jury convicts Fairfield man of killing Vallejo police officer

FAIRFIELD — Henry A. Smith Jr. at the very least faces life in prison without possibility of parole after being found guilty Friday afternoon of premeditated murder and three special circumstances that make him eligible for the death penalty.

Smith, 41, who has been in trial since April, is set to be back in court Monday morning when his defense team, prosecutor Karen Jensen and Judge Peter B. Foor will decide how to move forward in a penalty phase in which jurors will decide whether Smith will receive the death penalty.

The guilty verdict for the murder charge was accompanied by guilty verdicts for charges of robbery and being a felon in possession of a firearm. The special circumstances include murder during a robbery, murder to avoid arrest and murdering a peace officer.

Solano teen accused of killing another teen remains in jail with $5M bail

FAIRFIELD — A 16-year-old Vacaville teen who faces a murder charge was in court briefly Friday morning. Raul Gutierrez-Ayar, who authorities identify as a gang member, is accused of opening fire on a group at Dixon’s Northwest Park, near North Lincoln Street and West H Street, shortly after 8 p.m. on the night of April […]

Solano parole resources limitations play out in courtroom hearing

FAIRFIELD — An ex-con described in court records as low-functioning and who authorities describe as having serious “memory issues” has spent the past six weeks in jail for forgetting to meet with his parole agent. Lewis “Lulu” Jenkins, 59, handcuffed, shackled and wearing jailhouse garb, looked confused and dazed as he listened to his parole […]

No verdict as jurors continue deliberations in death penalty trial

FAIRFIELD — Jurors resumed their deliberations Thursday in the murder trial of a Fairfield man accused of killing a Vallejo police officer in 2011. Deliberations for Henry A. Smith Jr. had been halted Wednesday after one juror reported being sick. No verdict was reached Thursday. Jurors are set to continue their deliberations Friday morning. Smith […]

Juror illness brings Smith trial deliberations to a halt

FAIRFIELD — The three-month murder trial for the accused killer of a Vallejo police officer ground to a halt again Wednesday morning as the number of jurors and alternate jurors has dwindled down to critical mass. Amid another day of deliberations for Henry A. Smith, a juror sent Judge Peter B. Foor a note saying the […]

Judge lowers fine in new U-Turn sign traffic court trial

FAIRFIELD — Sometimes when laws change, some police officers give a courtesy grace period. Longtime Fairfield resident Danielle Bojorquez did not get any break, even a few hours, from a Fairfield officer or much grace from the traffic court judge who slapped her Wednesday with a fine and a point for her driving record. A city employee went […]

Jurors begin deliberations anew in trial of accused cop killer

FAIRFIELD — Into their fourth week of deliberations, a jury spent Tuesday reviewing details and testimony most have weighed and considered in recent weeks in the trial of an accused cop killer. The jury, with an alternate juror seated Monday after a juror was removed, had been ordered to disregard all previous deliberations and begin […]

Vacaville woman, in tears, recounts home break-in

FAIRFIELD — A woman home alone when two strangers broke into her Vacaville home in April broke down into tears Tuesday as she recounted her terrifying ordeal during a probable cause hearing for one of the burglary suspects. The burglary victim testified she had arrived back at her Edwin Drive home after a gym workout […]

Man to stand trial for alleged role in bank robbery

FAIRFIELD — A two-day probable cause hearing for one of two accused Fairfield bank robbers wrapped up Tuesday with Maurice L. Hill ordered to stand trial on a dozen felony charges for his suspected role in a failed Dec. 12 armed takeover robbery at the Solano First Credit Union on Union Avenue. Tellers and other […]

Man to stand trial in Fairfield rape, sexual assault case

FAIRFIELD — The defense attorney for an accused child rapist fired one verbal volley after another at her client’s accuser at an emotional probable cause hearing, only to be followed by brief prosecution DNA evidence that made the interrogation of the girl all for naught. Andre L. Johnson, 36, who police say has a history […]

Women linked to vicious Allan Witt Park attack agree to delay case

FAIRFIELD — Two of four former Solano Community College women’s basketball players and their mother, all implicated in a vicious beating of a fellow student, were in court briefly Thursday. Justice Robinson, 19, Jainice Robinson, 18, sisters, and their mother Latashia D. Reed agreed to postpone their case until an Aug. 17 court appearance. The […]

Jurors in Smith case break for weekend without verdict

FAIRFIELD — A fourth day of deliberations passed Thursday without a verdict in the murder trial of a Fairfield man accused of shooting and killing a Vallejo police officer after a 2011 bank robbery. Henry A. Smith shot and killed Officer Jim Capoot as he was chasing Smith through backyards in a Vallejo neighborhood after Capoot […]

Grand jury challenges Measure Q oversight in 2nd of 2 critical reports

FAIRFIELD — The Solano County grand jury issued its second report on Solano Community College administrative practices, blasting the management and oversight of the $348 million Measure Q bond passed by voters in 2012. The grand jury report noted the Citizen’s Bond Oversight Committee as it is being used by the college violates the California […]

Police use high-tech tools to track down suspects

FAIRFIELD — Thugs and brutal violent criminals are being taken down by Fairfield police using keystrokes, databases and other high-tech crime-fighting tools. Case in point: A recent armed robbery was solved in less than 15 minutes, according to court records filed Wednesday. Back on the afternoon of June 18, two men came into a pharmacy […]

Dixon resident new prison warden in Vacaville

VACAVILLE — A Dixon man was named the new warden at California State Prison, Solano in Vacaville, according to a press release issued Thursday by the governor’s office. Eric Arnold, 54, has served as acting warden at the prison since 2014 and was chief deputy warden from 2013 to 2014. Arnold’s 26-year career with the California […]

Retired Solano judge appointed to state board

FAIRFIELD — Fairfield native and current Vacaville resident retired Solano Superior Court Judge Ramona J. Garrett has been appointed by the Judicial Council to the state Board of State and Community Corrections. The agency was created in the wake of the criminal justice realignment reforms in 2011 and provides “leadership, coordination and technical assistance to promote […]

Accused cop killer’s case goes to jurors

FAIRFIELD — The four-hour closing argument the defense team gave Monday for an accused cop killer was dissected and countered Wednesday by prosecutor Karen Jensen in less than 40 minutes. Jensen’s closing argument, before jurors spent hours deliberating the fate of Henry A. Smith, began by labeling the defense theory that a second unidentified accomplice […]

Jury convicts Fairfield man of 6th DUI offense

FAIRFIELD — A 38-year-old alcoholic could face up to seven years in prison after being found guilty Tuesday of his sixth drunken driving offense. Frederick G. Bryson Jr. of Fairfield has already been to prison for a previous drunken driving conviction. Bryson, who had been free on bail awaiting trial since his 2013 arrest, was […]

Court grants defense request to delay case of girl’s suspected killer

FAIRFIELD — The Fairfield man awaiting trial for allegedly raping and strangling a 13-year-old girl was in court briefly Tuesday to get another delay in his case. Anthony L. Jones has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge with three special circumstances and earlier this year prosecutors said they intend to seek the death penalty […]

Grand jury blasts Solano College over $348M Measure Q

FAIRFIELD — A scathing Solano County grand jury report issued Monday reports that local voters were duped in 2012 by Solano Community College staff and supporters of a $348 million bond measure. The report claims the wording of Measure Q on the November 2012 ballot was deliberately misleading and violated state laws and the California […]

July 01, 2015 | Posted in Education | Tagged ,

Defense summarizes case to jury, asks for acquittal

FAIRFIELD — A one-day delay in the trial of an accused cop killer arose with a juror calling in sick Tuesday morning. Jurors were ordered to return Wednesday morning when closing arguments in the possible death penalty case are wrapped up. The lead defense counsel of Henry A. Smith’s legal team gave jurors his closing […]

July 01, 2015 | Posted in Crime-courts | Tagged ,
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