henry williams_2_10_14

Henry D. Williams appears in Solano County Superior Court in Fairfield, Feb. 10. (Robinson Kuntz/Daily Republic)


Garcia killer to act as own attorney

By From page A1 | March 06, 2014

FAIRFIELD — The ex-con who shot and killed Fairfield City Councilman Matt Garcia in 2008 is now acting as his own attorney after a judge’s ruling Wednesday.

The first thing Henry D. Williams did with his new status was get a two-month delay for an upcoming hearing about possible juror misconduct during Williams’ 2010 murder trial. The hearing was set for April 21. Judge Robert Bowers agreed to reset it for June 23.

For Bowers, the delay came with a sense of deja vu.

Bowers presided over Williams’ jury trial. In the months leading up to the trial, Williams tried repeatedly to use his constitutional right to act as his own attorney. Bowers agreed to Williams’ request in 2009, which ultimately bought him five months of delays before he changed his mind and requested the help of a lawyer.

The hearing Wednesday ended with Bowers spelling out the timeline that might play out if Williams changes his mind at or just before the June hearing.

Last year, the Court of Appeals ordered the hearing be conducted after Williams filed a writ of habeas corpus seeking a new trial. He claimed a juror had approached his wife in the courthouse hallway during a break in the jury trial and began talking with her in a conversation that eventually included the juror offering to trade his vote for sex.

The juror acknowledged having a brief conversation with Williams’ wife, but denies they exchanged anything but pleasantries.

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 | 16 comments

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  • General Fadi BasemMarch 05, 2014 - 8:50 pm

    Judge Bowers made the easy choice. When given the decision--who would I like to listen to, Mr. Williams or Mr. Mendenhall--who do I want to listen to? Future hearings will be much shorter now, simply due to less gassbaggery. And Mr. Williams appears to be a student of the Honeychurch school of lawyering---first and last and every opportunity, ask for a continuance.

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  • Blanca BotwinMarch 06, 2014 - 4:42 am

    LMAO. That is so true about Honeychurch, and your comment was funny.

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  • Skeptic ScroogeMarch 06, 2014 - 1:02 am

    She needs to be jailed for perjury and 647b!

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  • Blanca BotwinMarch 06, 2014 - 4:48 am

    Hogwash Skeptic. She needs more Witness Protection money paid to her! Maybe the 11k I read about wasn't enough. Pay her another 11k. I mean, the DA's office claimed they had to pay her the first time AND not charge her with anything, "to get to Williams", and look how well that turned out. Combs was sitting in the backseat, yet he was charged and is sitting in prison. The wife was DRIVING the car, but instead of charging her, she gets paid to testify, and in return,Williams concocts this ludicrous story, and you already know, the county's Witness Protection money went right on Williams books. SMDH. How does it feel to pay someone who should have been charged with murder,only to have that blood money go on the killers books, AND have the case back in court? If you would have charged her to begin with, she wouldn't have been wandering the halls with jurors!

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  • BMarch 06, 2014 - 8:12 pm

    The woman Driving the vehicle is his baby mama, not his wife who was chatting it up with a jury member. The whole thing is disgusting, sad and unfair...we need to fix our justice system

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  • JazzAzzMarch 06, 2014 - 8:50 pm

    What we need is vigilante justice, if the justice system can not get it done!!!!

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  • RalphMarch 06, 2014 - 1:31 am

    The problem isn't going to go away, the only options are left for his defense.

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  • my2centsMarch 06, 2014 - 5:44 am

    Honeychurch isn't the only criminal defense attorney whose legal skills are limited to repeated continuances. Dan Russo is notorious for the same tactic along with many other criminal defense attorneys. It makes a complete joke of our justice system. Victims of crimes have to literally wait years for justice. The defense hopes evidence will disappear, witnesses may die, memories may fade. Make no mistake, it is a strategy to try to avoid a conviction for as long as possible.

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  • MadelineMarch 06, 2014 - 9:05 am

    Oh no! I vomitted all over my tablet when i read this.... X-(****

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  • JazzAzzMarch 06, 2014 - 9:09 am

    “A man who is his own lawyer has a fool for his client” Then watch, later on he'll, or his FUTURE attorney (A Real ONE) will try to appeal on the grounds that he was represented by a incompetent attorney (His DumbArse self>>LOL), and that after so many continuances that HE ASKED FOR, he wasn't tried in sufficient time. A bullet to the back of his skull would be the proper justice, IMO, saving the tax payers all this money, future room, board, free medical/Dental costs, brought to us by the prison system.

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  • JazzAzzMarch 06, 2014 - 9:11 am


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  • boomMarch 06, 2014 - 9:46 am

    OK, since you guys are genteel and obviously have never had the occasion to stay the night at our friendly Solano Jail, let me tell you the real deal so you understand the act as your own attorney bit. Its called going pro per, or "for oneself in latin." Guess what one of the lovely benefits of going pro per is? Ahh, its that because you are your own attorney, you have the right to gain evidence on your own behalf AND that you get to use the payphone for FREE for 30 minutes a day, Monday through Friday to attempt to do so. There is a whole mod in your jail dedicated to inmates acting as their own attorney, they are all getting free calls home to their girlfriends and they hardly , if ever win their case. Most of the time these guys play the "pro per" role all the way up to jury selection and then suddenly understand they are way too deep over their head and as for a public defender, which then again delays their trial. So don't read into this guy trying to be his own lawyer too much, he probably just wants to call big momma a few times before goin back to the joint.

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  • Just remain quietMarch 06, 2014 - 10:12 am

    There u go boom thank most of the people that comment on here r people that never been threw anything in there life and just want to judge but dont know anything much of the real world

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  • JazzAzzMarch 06, 2014 - 11:12 am

    "The REAL WORLD???" Well the REAL WORLD is all about staying out of jail, like most LAW ABIDING citizens do, the MAJORITY. Yes there are many that end up in Jail or State prisons, but that is why God made LOSERS!!!!!!

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  • CeeMarch 06, 2014 - 1:14 pm

    "most of the people that comment on here r people that never been threw anything in there life and just want to judge but dont know anything much of the real world" Wow. How ignorant of you. Most of the people reading this article HAVE gone THROUGH something in their lives. Something like having their friend/loved one murdered by this monster. And we don't give a rat's behind about him doing this as a tactical move or to just get more calls to his girl or WHATEVER! HE SHOULDN'T HAVE RIGHTS TO ANYTHING after murdering someone we all cared for so much over mistaken identity in a $50 drug deal. So THAT'S why people are passionate about posting opinions on here and not giving this scum bag a break. So before YOU judge about people not knowing about the REAL world, get a REAL picture of what's going on here and what it looks like to the people that lost a REAL friend.. And had this REAL monster take the REAL life from him. Is that "something" grounds enough for YOUR real world to judge and post about? Or are YOU actually the one that needs to check yourself into the real world before opening your mouth.

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  • JazzAzzMarch 07, 2014 - 11:50 am

    AMEN TO THAT!!!!!!

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