A judge today suggested that Sonoma County Supervisor Efren Carillo’s misdemeanor peeking case could be resolved through a restorative justice disposition, but said that prosecutors and defense attorneys remain far from a resolution to the case at this time. Attorneys involved in Carrillo’s case met with Sonoma County Superior Court Judge Arnold D. Rosenfield in private this morning but did not arrive at a settlement of the case. After a 20-minute settlement conference in a hallway near his chambers, Rosenfield announced in court that the prosecution’s and defense’s positions on the case were “incompatible at this time.” Rosenfield then suggested a disposition that includes “restorative aspects” be discussed at future settlement conferences.
Under restorative justice dispositions, defendants may be required to meet and apologize to their victims. Carrillo, 32, pleaded not guilty in December to peeking into the window and door of a woman’s west Santa Rosa home while she was sleeping on July 13. The woman told Santa Rosa police someone tried to enter her bedroom window, then knocked on her front door and ran away. Police responded and arrested Carrillo, who was dressed only in his socks and underwear, for attempted burglary and prowling. Carrillo then attended an alcohol treatment center, and at a board of supervisors meeting in August he admitted he had a binge drinking problem. He has not appeared in court during a series of scheduled but postponed settlement conferences between his attorney Chris Andrian and Napa County Deputy District Attorney Cody Hunt.
Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch recused her office from prosecuting the case because she and Carrillo are political allies, and because the county’s board of supervisors approves her budget. The state Attorney General’s Office is prosecuting Carrillo, and Hunt has been representing the AG’s office. Supervising Deputy General Joyce Blair appeared for the prosecution this morning. Rosenfield initially told Blair and Andrian he was reluctant to meet with them off the record in his chambers because of “public perception.” Andrian said meeting in chambers is common practice, and he said he didn’t think Carrillo’s case should be any different.
The judge then said he would meet with Andrian and Blair in a hallway outside his chambers. When a settlement was not reached, Rosenfield scheduled March 19 for the next settlement conference. Andrian, Blair and Rosanne T. Darling, the attorney representing the alleged victim, then met in the Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office for about 30 minutes. “We agreed not to talk about what we talked about,” Andrian told reporters after that meeting ended. “I have absolute faith in the Attorney General’s position. Their position is appropriate and the victim supports it,” Darling said after the meeting. Asked what she wanted the outcome of Carrillo’s case to be, Darling said, “I would like the defendant to plead as charged. The victim wants him to take some responsibility.”
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