Solano County Court Jury Acquits Homeless Man; Public Defender Wins Her First Case

Solano County Court Jury Acquits Homeless Man; Public Defender Wins Her First Case

In her first jury trial since passing the Bar Exam a few months ago, a novice attorney beat the prosecution after a two-day trial.

Jurors needed only an hour to find Matthew W. Haskins, a homeless man, innocent of a misdemeanor resisting arrest charge. According to a Fairfield Daily Republic report, “his attorney, Catherine W. Kimel, left the courtroom smiling with a co-worker while the prosecutor left wearing a stern look on his face.” The verdict resulted after a Sheriff’s Office security guard testified that Mr. Haskins had attempted to punch her.

Haskins, 36, had been walking barefoot near the Fairfield Courthouse on the afternoon of March 13. He passed a woman exiting her car. Frightened at the sight of Haskins, the woman told the security guard that she had been harassed. A short time later, Haskins walked by the Probation Department where the security guard was stationed. At the trial the security guard testified she asked Haskins to stop. He didn’t. She followed. When she caught up to him, he raised his fists. She pulled a baton and wrestled him to the ground. With a probation officer’s help, she then arrested him.

Solano County Courthouse in Fairfield.

Solano County Courthouse in Fairfield.

Haskins denied harassing anyone. He testified that when he stopped and turned around the security guard already had the baton raised, ready to deploy. He raised his hands merely to protect his face. “He was just a free citizen, walking down the street, minding his own business when he was approached from behind,” Kimel told jurors. “He did not commit any crime.”

Solano County Court Jury Acquits Homeless Man; Public Defender Wins Her First Case was last modified: May 12th, 2014 by admin
Categories: Solano