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A man who twice ran over a woman at the Concord airport in 2009 in the commission of a carjacking was sentenced in a Martinez courtroom this morning to 26 years in prison. Brian Parsons, 35, was sentenced in connection with a Sept. 25, 2009, crime spree in Concord and Martinez that netted him nine felony charges including carjacking, assault with a deadly weapon and mayhem as well as misdemeanor charges of battery and resisting a peace officer with force or violence. The crime spree began when Parsons attempted to carjack a vehicle from the parking lot of Sam’s Club at 1225 Concord Ave. in Concord. The car owner chased Parsons on foot to a nearby hotel, according to police. Parsons then fled and carjacked a couple from San Diego of a rental car in a parking lot of the Concord airport.
Deputy District Attorney Jordan Sanders said the defendant approached the couple as the husband was loading luggage into the car and the wife had walked away to pay for the rental car. Parsons beat the man and threw him to the ground twice. The man’s wife tried to stop the defendant, who then reversed the car at a high speed, knocking the woman to the ground with an open car door, Sanders said. As both victims lay on the ground, Parsons reversed the car again, clipping the woman’s ankle. “Had she not moved, he would have killed her,” the prosecutor told the court this morning. The woman suffered major injuries, including permanent vision loss to one eye.
Both victims were severely traumatized by the attack, and the husband now suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Sanders said. Having to testify in court and to relive the details of that day only caused further distress and strain for the couple, he added. Parsons’ crime spree continued after he stole the couple’s rental car, which he dumped at the toll plaza parking lot of the Martinez-Benicia Bridge. He next tried to carjack a broken-down vehicle from a man along the side of the roadway on an Interstate Highway 680 overpass to the bridge, authorities said. The man ran away and called police, who captured Parsons a short time later on Marina Vista Boulevard in Martinez.
Parsons repeatedly struggled with officers and resisted arrest, Sanders said. When he was admitted to a local hospital for evaluation, Parsons head-butted a nurse who attempted to give him a blood test. At the time of his arrest, authorities said Parsons appeared to be under the influence of methamphetamine. Today, a few of Parsons’ family members and friends recalled his long struggle with the drug. They also described Parsons as a kind, intelligent person, a loving brother and son who excelled at his construction job. “He can be a calm, peaceful person who’s very involved with our family, and then there’s the Meth Brian — I don’t know that person,” the defendant’s sister, Brittany Parsons, told the court today.
Defense attorney Linda Fullerton told the court that her client suffers from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and PTSD from psychological and physical abuse. She said Parsons was sober for 18 months leading up to Sept. 5, 2009, after he relapsed and started using methamphetamine again. Sanders said that even with his strong support system, Parsons chose repeatedly to use drugs, committing serious crimes even prior to Sept. 5, 2009 including robbery and assault. “To say this was a one-time occurrence…is misleading,” the prosecutor said. “It is his character to use drugs, be violent and be selfish.” In addition to his jail sentence, Parsons will be ordered to pay $300,000 in restitution covering medical expenses for the woman he ran over.
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