Ex-con, linked by police to high-speed chase, to stand trial

By From page A3 | August 13, 2014

FAIRFIELD — An ex-con who fled from Fairfield police in June at speeds of more than 100 mph was ordered Monday to stand trial on felony evading and auto theft charges.

Julius Watson, of Vallejo, was stopped on westbound Interstate 80 by Detective Joseph Perry. Watson gave Perry his identification and waited a few minutes before deciding to speed off in the Nissan that Perry found out was stolen. A brief high-speed chase was cut short over safety concerns for other motorists, according to police testimony at Watson’s probable cause hearing.

Watson left his identification behind when he fled.

Another Fairfield police officer, David Neal, helped track down Watson in July to his girlfriend’s grandmother’s Vallejo home. Neal found Watson in spite of Watson’s effort to hide by standing behind a bedroom door wearing just his underwear, according to testimony Monday. After Watson was handcuffed, he asked Neal for his pants and some shoes. Neal handed Watson the pants, but not before finding a bag of cocaine in a pocket. Neal then got Watson’s shoes and found a loaded gun in one of them.

In addition to the evading and auto theft charges, Judge Robert Fracchia ordered Watson to stand trial on charges of being a felon in possession of drugs and a gun.

Before Watson’s arrest, federal authorities had already put out an arrest warrant for Watson, who had been on federal probation after having done 40 months behind bars for his role in huge marijuana trafficking scheme that was busted in 2011.

The scheme involved 15 people shipping hundreds of pounds of marijuana over the course of several years from Vallejo and other Bay Area cities to 10 different states, according to court records. Watson described his role in the conspiracy as minor, saying he never sold more than three pounds of marijuana at a time.

Fracchia ordered Watson to return to court Aug. 25 to be arraigned on the felony charges. Watson remains locked up without bail.

Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or [email protected] 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.

Discussion | 2 comments

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  • 2realAugust 12, 2014 - 6:03 am

    Throw away the key

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  • gemmaAugust 12, 2014 - 8:43 am

    I'm still wondering how someone becomes an "Ex Con." Once you're convicted, you're a Convict, and that's never going to change, unless you have the crime expunged. If you're convicted and paroled, now your an Ex INMATE, but you'll always be a Con, so I've never under the Ex part. It makes no sense.

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