BREAKING: Pie-guy pretrial ends with claims of K.J. whiplash, judge's Abbott and Costello musings (yeah, it was weird)
Judge upholds felony assault charge against mayor’s pie-tosser
A Sacramento Superior Court judge today upheld a felony assault charge against Sean Thompson–a military veteran and homeless activist who creamed Mayor Kevin Johnson with a pie in September.
Thompson and his attorney Claire White watched from the defense table of a virtually empty courtroom as Sacramento County Deputy District Attorney Anthony Ortiz called a single witness to testify about the infamous pie incident that took place September 21 at Sacramento High School, which ended with Thompson on the ground taking face punches from K.J.
Sacramento police Det. Orlando Moralez, assigned to the mayor’s protection detail, testified that he was called to an afternoon fundraising event where a witness told him she’d watched Thompson sneak up on the mayor holding a plastic bag and then whip out a pie to give him a good splattering. When Ortiz asked the detective how that witness had described Thompson’s demeanor, Moralez responded, “She said the act was full of anger and aggression.”
Moralez also testified that Johnson told him the pie hitting his face had caused a pain that went from his neck down to his spine, similar to a whiplash injury.
During cross examination, White attempted to ask Moralez if he had read any of the statements from other witnesses or members of law enforcement who were nearby when Johnson got the Nickelodean treatment.
White specifically attempted to reference a report by police Det. Calvin Lynn, which she said characterized witnesses’ view that Thompson’s actions were “just a prank."
After Moralez testified that he could not recall reading those witness statements or reports before coming to court, a frustrated White told Judge Paul L Seave that Moralez was impaneled for his ignornace.
“The district attorney’s office chose to bring an officer here today who was not the primary investigator in the case and who happened interview the only two witnesses in the entire case who described what Mr. Thompson did as a violent act,” she said.
Both the prosecution and defense agreed in court that Thompson’s motivation for pieing Johnson was to protest the treatment of Sacramento’s homeless, though they strongly disagreed on whether the act counted as “retaliation” against a public official.
When Seave was ready to hear closing arguments, White stressed that Thompson’s assault charge can be legally lowered for a reason.
“The legislature allowed for this violation to be lowered in some cases,” White argued. “Mr. Thompson in no way attempted to injure the mayor, and whether this rises to the level of a felony is where the rubber meets the BREAKING: Pie-guy pretrial ends with claims of K.J. whiplash, judge's Abbott and Costello musings (yeah, it was weird) - Page Burner - November 3, 2016 - Blogs - Sacramento News & Review: