Court Dismisses Eight of Thirteen Felony Charges Against Former Public Executive
Following a week-long preliminary hearing in which Jim D. Riddet of Bienert | Katzman represented a former Orange County Public Works Executive, the court dismissed eight of thirteen felony counts against his client, ruling that there was insufficient evidence to require the defendant to stand trial. Over the course of the preliminary hearing, Mr. Riddet was able to establish through cross examination of prosecution witnesses that many of the charges were not even supported by probable cause.
After testimony concluded, Mr. Riddet argued to the court that in 47 years of defending criminal cases “I have never seen a case which is so blatantly over filed.” He also argued that one of the deputy district attorneys prosecuting the case committed misconduct when she told potential witnesses that the prosecutor believed the defendant was guilty. At the conclusion of the arguments, Superior Court Judge Kazaharu Makino dismissed 8 of the 13 felony counts. The judge also agreed with Mr. Riddet that the prosecutor’s comments to a witness were improper. Following the ruling, Mr. Riddet stated that the court’s findings supported his and his client’s long time contention that the many of the charges should never have been filed.Share