Woodland, CA – On July 30, 2020, 56-year-old Phillip Arasa appeared before a two-commissioner panel of the Board of Parole Hearings for his first lifer parole hearing. Arasa was sentenced to 29 years-to-life in State Prison in 2007. At the time of the crime, Arasa was a resident of Contra Costa County. The hearing commissioners were Michele Minor and Thomas Sparks. Arasa is serving his sentence at Mule Creek State Prison.
On December 13, 2001, Yolo County Sheriff’s Deputies were called to the Cache Creek Casino to assist in the recovery of a car. When they got there, Arasa was in the car. He refused to turn the car off and instead hit the gas pedal and sped off. One of the deputies was struck by an open door on the car as Arasa fled. He led law enforcement on a fifty-mile pursuit into Colusa and Lake counties before a spike strip was used by law enforcement to stop the car. He fled on foot and was arrested later that day.
About an hour into the hearing, a break was requested by Arasa’s attorney. Arasa then offered to agree to a 3-year-denial of parole, saying through his attorney that he felt he was unsuitable for release at this time. Deputy Commissioner Sparks recommended that Arasa commit himself to programming for substance abuse and criminal gang awareness in preparation for his next chance at parole.
Yolo County Supervising Deputy District Attorney Garrett Hamilton represented the Yolo District Attorney’s Office at the hearing by audio conference, due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Arasa will be eligible for parole again in 2023.”