Saturday, October 25, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

’10-shots-of-booze’ defense falls flat

By
From page A4 | June 20, 2013 |

FAIRFIELD — A three-day jury trial with some odd twists for an accused drunken driver ended Wednesday with the judge slamming the defendant.

Halfway through the trial the defendant, James M. Yurkis, 39, disappeared.

Judge Alesia Jones decided to go on with the trial without Yurkis, whose attorney, Denis Honeychurch, stuck around until the end.

“I don’t know what has befallen my client,” Honeychurch told jurors in his closing argument, gesturing toward the empty chair at the defense table.

Yurkis’ absence pretty much gutted any defense case Honeychurch planned to counter the prosecution case about events one night in July 2010. That case included testimony from Fairfield police who described finding Yurkis’ wrecked truck plowed into a wall at his apartment complex before finding Yurkis in his apartment bleeding profusely from a cut on his head.

He said he’d been drinking beer at his apartment and earlier in the evening at Chevy’s but he was vague about how much beer he had downed.

Police said Yurkis reeked of alcohol and a blood-alcohol test after he was arrested reflected his blood-alcohol concentration was 0.23 percent – nearly three times the legal limit.

Honeychurch told jurors his client was not drunk when he wrecked his truck and that he had used alcohol as a painkiller. Honeychurch said it was conceivable that his absent client had downed 10 shots of hard alcohol in the 25 minutes that passed between the wreck and when officers knocked on his apartment door.

Jurors rejected the 10-shot defense and found Yurkis guilty of a pair of misdemeanor charges. It was Yurkis’ second DUI conviction.

Jones sentenced Yurkis to six months of jail time, fined him more than $2,100, ordered him to do 150 hours of community service and to get an ignition interlock device on his truck, and to attend drunken driving classes.

Honeychurch labeled the punishment as retaliation for his client’s disappearance.

Jones ended the trial by issuing a $50,000 warrant for Yurkis’ arrest.

Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or jsullivan@dailyrepublic.net. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jsullivandr.

Jess Sullivan

Jess has covered the criminal justice system in Solano County for several years. He was an embedded reporter in Iraq in 2003.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 3 comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Bill of RightsJune 20, 2013 - 6:04 am

    6 months for a 2nd DUI conviction? Well, at least it is time behind bars. Refreshing to see a Solano County Judge handing out a decent form of punishment. And for Honeychurch to add insult to injury by complaining 6 months is harsh and retaliation is a typical defense attorney slime! Thank god this person didn't kill anyone and his actions only effected himself. Well not really because it is us taxpayers who will be footing his bill once he has bee arrested.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • CD BrooksJune 20, 2013 - 8:13 am

    Like I always say, DUI laws are nowhere near strict enough. First offense should come with a $10K non-refundable penalty to unlock the cell door with bail and other penalties and fines to follow. That would be a good start. A second offense should carry a mandatory five years prison sentence. Nuff said.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • JusticeJune 20, 2013 - 12:22 pm

    Can't do prison for a misdemeanor and if you could the jails would be overflowing and the state would be bankrupt. Close the borders first, then see the crime rate drop

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

 
 
Fall Harvest Festival brings children back to school

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Optimist Club brings youth together for Halloween golf

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Cut-a-thon to help fight cancer, abuse

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
School board candidates forum set next week

By Susan Winlow | From Page: A4

 
Staying active may prolong your life

By Scott Anderson | From Page: B8

 
Suisun City police log: Oct. 23, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

.

US / World

Suspect arrested in death of 2 California deputies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
KC-10 from Travis lands in Houston, smoke in cockpit

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

Jury says castrated sex offender should be freed

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Reagan astrologer, Joan Quigley, dies at 87

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Remains belong to missing Virginia student

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Dallas nurse receives thanks, hug from Obama

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

School gunman was Homecoming prince, students say

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Lava creeps toward road on Hawaii’s Big Island

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

NY, NJ order Ebola quarantine for doctors, others

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Gunman in Canada attack complained about mosque

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Egypt declares emergency in northern Sinai

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Militant group said to be using chlorine bombs

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

Putin accuses US of undermining global stability

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
.

Opinion

Editorial Cartoons: Oct. 25, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
SEIU shouldn’t own Board of Supervisors

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 2 Comments

Vote, and make a difference

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
Yes on Measure A

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

Spering best choice for county supervisor

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

 
Return Garamendi to Congress

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8, 10 Comments

.

Living

Today in History: Oct. 25, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Oct. 25, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Oct. 25, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

 
My mother-in-law wants me to convert to Catholicism, but I don’t want to

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

Hello Kitty turning 40, and the birthday bash will be ‘supercute’

By Mcclatchy-Tribune News Service | From Page: B8

 
.

Entertainment

P.D. James’ riff on Jane Austen comes to TV

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B9

TLC cancels its ‘Honey Boo Boo’ series

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
.

Sports

Royals beat Giants 3-2 for 2-1 World Series lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Vargas to take on Vogelsong in Game 4 of Series

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Falcons hang with Wolves in 34-8 setback

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Hamilton helps Vanden sink Vallejo, 35-0

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B1

Vintage rolls past Armijo, 55-8

By Mike Corpos | From Page: B1

 
Mustangs fall flat in rout by Wildcats

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1, 1 Comment

Unfazed, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh doing it his way

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Lloyd leads US women past Mexico 3-0

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Raiders’ Woodley, Young expected to be placed on IR

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Henley’s putting gets him lead at Sea Island

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Judge halts New Jersey’s sports betting plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Joe Maddon exercises opt-out, won’t return to Rays

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Jamie McMurray bests Chase drivers to win pole

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Attorney: NFL, Ravens not helping union in Rice probe

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

SCC women’s soccer team falls to Mendocino 3-1

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
.

Business

US official: Auto safety agency under review

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Ford profit falls in third quarter on truck costs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Procter & Gamble taking out its batteries

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
UPS expects double-digit surge in Dec shipments

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

US new-home sales close to flat in September

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Obituaries

Melvin Tate

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Mark Dean Lindsay

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Dr. Robert M. Takamoto

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
.

Home Seller 10/25/14

Real estate transactions for Oct. 25, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR2