Spitting at policeman spurs misdemeanor, not felony, charge

By From page A3 | May 21, 2014

FAIRFIELD — A man accused of spitting at a police officer will face a misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest, rather than a felony, Solano County Superior Court Judge Donna Stashyn ruled Tuesday.

“No officer deserves that,” Stashyn said in court. “It sounds like the officer was just trying to do his job.”

But the judge said she wasn’t sure about adequate evidence in the May 5 incident for a felony charge against James Drew James, who also faces a misdemeanor battery charge after the Tuesday preliminary hearing in Solano County Superior Court.

Fairfield Police Officer Craig Jiminez testified he was dispatched to the Laurel Creek House, an outpatient facility on East Tabor Avenue, where a psychologist said a mental health client was threatening violence against the staff.

James wanted police to take him to jail because he intended to kill Laurel Creek House staff and a police officer, said Jiminez, who described James as ranging emotionally from calm to belligerent. James was handcuffed and placed in the back of the patrol car.

Jiminez said Plexiglass is behind his head in the patrol car and a mesh screen separates the rest from the back seat.

James, seated in the rear on the passenger side, spat three times at him, the officer testified.

“I think he’d already launched the third volley before I was able to get out of the vehicle,” the officer said in court.

Jiminez exited the vehicle, notified dispatch and placed a device called a “spit sock” on the suspect, Jiminez testified.

Solano County Public Defender Tehanita Taylor argued in court that the emotionally unstable James threw a temper tantrum that lacked physical force.

Reach Ryan McCarthy at 427-6935 or [email protected]

Ryan McCarthy


Discussion | 8 comments

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  • Tax PayerMay 21, 2014 - 5:21 am

    wow, give him a ticket for his emotional outburst. That will really fix his behavior. Vote Abrams for DA.

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  • The MisterMay 21, 2014 - 5:53 am


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  • Bill of RightsMay 21, 2014 - 6:04 am

    Stashyn says no officer deserves that and it sounds like the office was just trying doing his job! Really? Incredible! Way to set precedence! Milk toast judges and DA's office!

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  • My2centsMay 21, 2014 - 6:07 am

    Why are so many of these facilities in Fairfield? They are causing crime, litter, noise and taxing City resources. These facilities are reducing property values and are a major factor in the level of crime in Fairfield. The City Council needs to pass some new laws limiting the number and location of these treatment centers often located in residential neighborhoods.

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  • 2realMay 21, 2014 - 6:12 am

    And this made the paper why...?

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  • TylerMay 21, 2014 - 6:14 am

    There are so many of these facilities in only some Fairfield neighborhoods, particularly neighborhoods with high numbers of cheap rentals, because the neighbors don't protest having them. I doubt a lot of the neighbors even know what's moving in to their blocks.

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  • Mr. SmithMay 21, 2014 - 8:22 am

    I would be curious to know the number and locations of facilities like the one mentioned in this article. Does Fairfield have too many of them? What do the neighbors say about living near them? What is the frequency of calls for service from police personnel to these facilities? How many is too many, compared to other cities of similar population? Might be something the Mayor's crime commission could look into.

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  • 11May 21, 2014 - 9:05 pm

    Laurel Creek House is on East Tabor, as noted in article. However it is not a "house". It is a treatment facility that gives services to mental health clients. It is a staffed facility and police are called there routinely when situations escalate. In regards to the treatment homes located in residential neighborhoods, if a care home has six or less persons, they are not required to have a business license from the city and can basically set up in any neighborhood, unless a HOA prohibits it, which few neighborhoods have a HOA. The state has Dept of Social Services who oversees homes with more than six persons, and they will tell people that a person can not be discriminated against and prohibited from living somewhere due to their illness. So, if they fall within certain criteria, there is often nothing the city can do--they can step in when there is more than six persons. Often these homes set up because they gain substantial profit from the renters who pay often with their state supplemented income. Seems unfair to those of us who don't want "businesses" located in our residential neighborhoods.

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