Tony Denunzio

Paul Wellman (file)

Tony Denunzio

DA Dismisses DUI Case Against Tony Denunzio

Cites Inability to Use Blood-Alcohol Content Evidence in Second Trial

Tuesday, April 16, 2013
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The DUI case against Tony Denunzio — who made headlines in October 2011 after his violent arrest was partially captured on video — was dismissed Thursday by prosecutor Mai Trieu after it became clear she wouldn’t be able to use blood-alcohol content test results as evidence in Denunzio’s retrial.

The decision was made the day jury selection was to begin. In a statement, the District Attorney’s Office said Judge James Rigali ruled that evidence of Denunzio’s blood-alcohol content level — his blood was drawn 48 minutes after his arrest, and registered at a 0.09 percent, above the legal limit of 0.08 percent — was irrelevant to whether he was driving under the influence of alcohol. As a result, the statement from the office said, there was insufficient evidence to retry the case. “The People cannot prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was driving under the influence of alcohol without the DOJ’s expert testimony regarding the defendant’s blood alcohol content,” Kelly Scott, the DA’s chief trial deputy, said. During the first trial, the jury was split 8-4 in favor of guilt on the DUI charge and a mistrial was declared. Darryl Genis, Denunzio’s attorney, called the DA’s statement false and misleading. He said Rigali simply told Trieu “what she already knew or should have known” from an earlier ruling.

During Denunzio’s first trial — he was originally facing two separate charges of driving with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.08 percent or above and driving under the influence — the judge dismissed the charge of driving with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 percent or above. Genis had argued that blood-alcohol tests are circumstantial evidence. With circumstantial evidence, if there are two or more reasonable conclusions and one suggests innocence and another guilt, the one pointing to innocence must be accepted. An expert for the prosecution admitted Denunzio could have had a 0.079 percent blood-alcohol level at the time of driving, Genis said, and the judge sided with him in his argument that it would not be appropriate to extrapolate back to the time Denunzio was driving. Because the judge made that decision in the first trial, Genis said, the issue couldn’t be re-litigated or used in the second trial.

The prosecution could’ve tried the case without the BAC evidence, but would have been hard-pressed to convince a jury of Denunzio’s guilt. In video footage of his driving the night of his arrest, Denunzio makes a few small traffic violations, but nothing that necessarily indicates he was under the influence. While the two sides might have viewed Rigali’s ruling differently, the fact remains that Genis — an outspoken attorney who has long been a pain in the sides of many deputy district attorneys — is now 2-for-2 in the biggest DUI prosecutions out of Santa Barbara in recent memory.

<b>WINNERS:</b>  Outspoken DUI attorney Darryl Genis claimed victory this week after the District Attorney’s Office declined to retry his client Tony Denunzio.
Click to enlarge photo

Paul Wellman

WINNERS: Outspoken DUI attorney Darryl Genis claimed victory this week after the District Attorney’s Office declined to retry his client Tony Denunzio.

In 2011, Genis successfully defended Peter Lance, a journalist who also faced DUI charges. After his arrest, Lance began investigating Officer Kasi Beutel and wrote voluminously about her in the pages of the Santa Barbara News-Press, accusing her of everything from perjury on financial documents to planting drugs on people she arrested. Police Chief Cam Sanchez strongly stood behind Beutel.

It was a result of Lance’s writing — and a subsequent Grand Jury report — that the Santa Barbara Police Department had video cameras installed in their patrol cars. Officer Aaron Tudor just so happened to be driving a vehicle with a test video unit installed when he followed Denunzio into the Loreto Plaza parking lot in October. The video showed Denunzio getting out of his car and looking back toward Tudor, who quickly jumped out of his cruiser and told Denunzio, “Stay in your car.” When Denunzio slowly turned his head away from the officer, Tudor came up behind him, grabbed his left arm, and pushed him toward Denunzio’s SUV. Tudor — then a four-year veteran of the department — performed a leg sweep, and Denunzio fell to the ground. Soon after, Tudor started striking Denunzio with his knee and his open palm. (Witnesses described closed-fist punching.) Denunzio then looked to be on his knees with the officer sort of straddling his back, but both of their faces were out of the camera’s view. Tudor could be seen using his Taser in the “drive stun” mode.

“If Aaron Tudor had beat a dog they [sic] way he beat Mr. DeNunzio, he might just now 18 months later be getting out of prison on parole,” Genis said in one email amid a deluge of emails sent over the weekend to this reporter. After reviewing the video and speaking with witnesses, District Attorney Joyce Dudley declined to press charges against Denunzio for resisting arrest or against Tudor for excessive force.

Genis questioned the amount of money spent on these two cases. (Dudley said her office doesn’t keep track of hours or staff time spent on particular cases, so it was impossible to know the total amount spent. She also said her office handled this case and all the other cases that came in during that time without additional costs). “The citizens of Santa Barbara must demand to know how much more than a half a million dollars will their DA spend to protect corrupt and violent members of law enforcement?” he emailed.

Scott, in her statement, defended her office’s actions in prosecuting Denunzio. “This office will continue to work with our esteemed colleagues in law enforcement to support public safety, uphold the law, and prosecute offenses whenever we have admissible evidence that we can present to a jury which we believe proves each charge to the standard of beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Denunzio Police Traffic Stop Full Footage


Independent Discussion Guidelines

In the article "Mistrial Declared" on March 13, 2013 at
I openly stated the obvious: “This case will never see the light of day again,” he said. “Humpty Dumpty, baby. All the king’s horses are never gonna put this one back together. It’s done."
Whereas, our DA Joyce Eden Dudley personally stated in a Press Release: "Therefore, given the present state of evidence in this case, I believe it is our responsibility to retry this defendant.” Yet, only a month later, with the same "present state of the evidence" a DDA told the judge "the people are unable to proceed" and our fearless DA Dudley relegated the next Press Release to her subordinate DDA Scott, who wrongly decided to blame Judge Rigali, instead of taking responsibility for the DA's own bad decisions.
Just yesterday in Santa Maria Court I appeared on Case number 1431696 where the Goleta DOJ crime lab got a .09% BAC on a Single Column Gas Chromatograph. My lab got a .07% on a DUAL Column Gas Chromatograph. DDA Crystal Joseph dismissed the case without fanfare, and without a press release blaming Judge Flores, and without wasting tens of thousands of dollars of your tax dollars.
Single column GC has not been anything more than a screening test with high incidents of false positives for 30 years. Dual column has been state of the art for 30 years.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 5:58 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Although this guy is as guilty as sin and I hate to see him get off without (legal) justice, in the end, it's a wise decision. The SBPD so tainted this case that it was not worth pursuing.

Of course, there will be no change and no investigation either at the SBPD. It will be business as usual until some officer goes off half-cocked again and screws up another case. Lots of mistakes were made here and I sincerely doubt anyone is learning from them.

I just hope Genus and Denunzio don't go after the taxpayers for this. They have no just cause to do so.

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 7:11 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Botany, how do you know "this guy is guilty as sin"?

I DO hope Genis and Denunzio go after the City; maybe it would cause a much-needed review of the SBPD and the DA's office by an independent authority.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 8:52 a.m. (Suggest removal)

John, considering Denunzio's history, BAL level and obnoxious behavior during his arrest, he's guilty. But that doesn't necessarily mean he should have been convicted.

If he goes after the city, I'm sure you'll happily pay the extra taxes or suffer the lack of city services that result so we can line Denunzio's and Genis's pockets. I don't even think that will be enough to change the culture at the SBPD.

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 10:01 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Oh he will go after the city.. the city's DOLLARS! I hope he takes them to the cleaners and it makes everyone very upset. I believe the city is insured for these types of blunders so don't worry about your street sweeping, but the mere sticker shock will probably spell the end for the DA's reelection hopes, and hopefully get some oversight for the COPS. Actually, you cannot say without a reasonable doubt that he was guilty. Bash his character all you want, he is like this, he is like that. Whatever. Watch the video again and Tudor jumping out of the bushes like a weirdo. Something is just not right with that. Finally, DG, you used the "C" word! OMG! :)

bimboteskie (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 10:19 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Which C word, Citizen?

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 10:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Recently in another local webpage/publication where comments can be left on this very subject, someone used the word "corrupt" which ignited a mini firestorm of slander, and character attack retaliation threats which seemed pretty ridiculous. Thus the "C" word.

bimboteskie (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 10:48 a.m. (Suggest removal)

So let me get this staight: A guy who has had 2 previous DUI convictions and whose drivers license is suspended, drives to a bar and drinks alcohol and then gets in his vehicle and drives away and he is innocent because of a technicality of the BAC testing procedure. I expect to see the Cheshire Cat any moment. Oh yeah, that was Genis smiling. We are down the rabbit hole.

Eckermann (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 12:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Look we can all learn from this experience and hopefully be better people.. What I learned is... its OK to drink and drive, as long as you have the money to get you off the hook.

skaterspoint (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 12:51 p.m. (Suggest removal)

It's not as much the money as it is the mistakes of our public servants that caused this to happen.

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 1:05 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Agreed, "skaterspoint."

Also realize if we can refine our Stand Your Ground statutes (more like Florida!), and add in the extra special benefit of Concealed Carry, Denunzio never would have to endured that "beating."

binky (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 1:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The only thing that is obvious: he is not guilty.

He may not be innocent either, but the court/prosecutorial system has weighed in and found him not guilty.

sevendolphins (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 2:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Does anyone know if, since he was found guilt of driving on a suspended license, the DMV could take away his license for some extended period of time as a purely administrative action? I am not so much concerned with justice at this point as I am with public safety. I don't care if he is guilty or innocent, but I sure would like him off the road for a long time (forever would be best).

Eckermann (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 3:40 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Botany, his history is irrelevant to this specific case, by law. His BAC was found wanting by the court. The behavioral problem was that of the officer who administered the beating - watch the tape. You have no way of knowing if he was guilty - you may BELIEVE it, but you don't KNOW it.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 3:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I agree with binky. Unfortunately, the US Supreme Court just declined to hear a challenge to the NY concealed carry prohibition that could have moved the nation to a 'right to carry' nation.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 4 p.m. (Suggest removal)

John - We also don't KNOW that Tudor used excessive force, you may BELIEVE it, but you don't KNOW it. The tape is not proof that excessive force was used.

All we know is what the government and the press has told us. Both of us are just making judgments here based on what we've read and heard.

But since the standard for conviction is much higher than just our beliefs, (as it should be), he was not convicted.

Neither was Tudor. The problem there was that he wasn't even investigated.

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 5:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Don't believe your eyes, believe an anonymous blogger.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 5:34 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Binky - are you suggesting carrying a concealed weapon would have prevented Denunzio from the beating he suffered at the hands of an incompetent officer? The tape is evidence of excessive force by Tudor as he initiated the initial physical, and excessive use of unnecessary force against Denunzio.

whatsinsb (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 5:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

This concealed weapon stuff is silly. If DeNunzio would have reach for a weapon, Tudor would have shot him in the chest about five or six times. You idiots that think you can take on trained police officers in a gun fight need to get a reality check. Ever shot a person shooting at you Binky? I thought not.

Eckermann (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 7:10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Methinks Binky is being a bit sarcastic.

For my two-cents worth, this case reminds me of the Rodney King fiasco. Lots of guilt to go around, but hopefully DeNunzio will pull his life together and not get dead like King did.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 7:19 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Where is Validated? Where is Lawdy? Where are all the people who were so sure DeNunzio would be convicted? Are they hanging out with all the folks who said Lance would lose?

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 16, 2013 at 9:21 p.m. (Suggest removal)

you won. all you did was ensure denunzio gets another dui down the line. the gift that keeps on giving, clark. stand by for repeat business.

you, denunzio, peter lance....all birds of a feather. go celebrate and buy a new tie....maybe get lance a gf.

your napoleon complex makes you a tryer no doubt....but otoh, the resulting endless impassioned self-promotion gives off a foul stench.

lawdy (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 8:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Botany, I watched the video. Tudor was clearly hitting Denunzio and from the angle of his arm, the hits were not palm strikes. You surely don't think his behavior was ok because Sanchez said so, do you?

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 8:49 a.m. (Suggest removal)

No, all I am saying is that the video didn't show everything that went on. Personally, I think Tudor very likely did use excessive force. My point was that my determination that Denunzio was driving drunk has as much validity as your determination that Tudor used excessive force.

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 10:10 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Your reasoning escapes me. How would a dismissal and an acquittal insure the commission of a new offense? The same could be said if the DA had prevailed.
As for birds of a feather, Lance is nothing like DeNunzio, and I am nothing like either of them, and you are most likely in no position to render such judgment.
Lastly, I'm not sure what kind of lawyers you deal with, but none that I have ever met engage in match making.
Have a nice day ma'am.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 11:33 a.m. (Suggest removal)

So, looking at my calendar, does this mean Denunzio and his legal representation, whomever it may be for the civil suit, will have until October to file against the City?

bimboteskie (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 11:53 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"He may not be innocent either, but the court/prosecutorial system has weighed in and found him not guilty."
-- sevendolphins

That is not correct. The first trial was hung and the second did not come to a verdict. There was no decision as to guilty or not guilty.

SezMe (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 4:11 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Okay, here is the accurate summary of the entire case:
Charge: Count II (Driving While having a BAC of .08% or more)
Finding: NOT GUILTY on March 8, 2013.
(There were also special allegations that DeNunzio had refused to take a chemical test, but when the DA learned DeNunzio's blood draw was audio recorded and the audio clearly showed he did not refuse, they dismissed those allegations. Allegations of his prior convictions were held in abayance pending outcome of counts I and II and became irrelevant because of the absence of a conviction on either count.)
Charge: Count III (Driving While License suspended
Finding: GUILTY on March 12, 2013. Sentence 10 days CJ, Credit 10, fine $1,000.
Notice of Appeal has been filed. Whether this conviction will withstand attack upon appeal remains to be determined.
Charge: Count I (Driving While Under the Influence of Alcohol)
Finding: Hung Jury, on March 12, 2013. Press Release personally written by Joyce Eden Dudley stated the evidence (all of it) mandated that the case be re-tried. Then on April 11, 2013, Judge James F. Rigali told DDA Mai Trieu that because she had already had an 8 day trial wherein DeNunzio had been found not to have driven with a BAC of .08% or more, he would allow her to introduce the evidence of the blood test, but he would not allow her to argue that DeNunzio's BAC was .09% at the time of driving and instead the jury must be told of the prior ruling and that they must not conclude the result was any higher than 0.0799%. Based upon this ruling, DDA Mai Trieu (who the previous week had accepted an award from MADD for her fearless prosecution of DUI) stood up in open court and told the court she could not prosecute the case unless she could argue DeNunzio was .09% or more at the time of driving and she moved to dismiss the case. She did this with the approval of her direct supervisor DDA Kelly Scott. Immediately thereafter, DA Dudley relegated Ms. Scott to write a Press Release and Ms. Scott took the low road and blamed the Judge for the Dismissal and she LIED saying the judge ruled the blood test irrelevant.
Now comes the civil suit. Mr. DeNunzio has two lawyers, Darryl Genis and Thomas Beck. Expect the lawsuit to be filed soon.
The SBPD is now starting an investigation into the complaint against Tudor. It remains to be seen whether they are capable of adaquately handling this matter in house.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 4:50 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"Esteemed" = held in high regard. colleagues = an "associate in a profession or in a civil or ecclesiastical office".

So DDA Kelly Scott watched the video of Aaron Tudor senslessly and unprovokedly beating an unarmed and non agressive DeNunzio (who in this case turns out to be a man with a past, but it could just as easily been a law abiding citizen with a bonafide hearing impairment, whose two mortal sins were not signaling a lane change and getting out of his car to go to the market) and thereafter she finds it appropriate to hold him in "High Regard", so high that she deems him worth of being a "professional associate" of hers. Wow, I'm not sure too many people would share her sense of values or her judgment of character.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 7:20 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Dear Mr. Genis,
Fact: DeNunzio has 2 previous DUI convictions.
Fact: DeNunzio drove his vehicle while having a suspended drivers license.
Fact: DeNunzio drove that vehicle to a bar.
Fact: After consuming some amount of alcohol, an amount enough to measure a BAC of some level, DeNunzio got into his vehicle and drove up Las Positas Road.
Tell me Mr.Genis what makes Mr. DeNunzio innocent as a new born babe. Tell me Mr.Genis why Mr. DeNunzio deservers his drivers license back. Assure me Mr. Genis that Mr. DeNunzio will never again drive a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol. Assure me Mr. Genis that Mr. Denunzio will not be responsible for the death of another motorist because of drunk driving. Tell me Mr. Genis how you would live with yourself if Mr. DeNunzio killed someone while driving drunk.

Eckermann (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 8:21 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Chalk up another woolpuller for drunktards and their heralded champeen of DUI Losers, Darryl Hic Genis, a name that rhymes with what he is.

One can hope that some ironic outcome might come of this, say, Genis drives to his favorite wafflery to pick up a bag of buttery bucknuts and on his way home, mouth salivating with buttericious anticipation, he gets glazed by . . . well, we've all seen the ending to that flick before.

Eckermann has listed it all out. This drunk driver will offend again because if he didn't learn the first time, if he still drove illegally, well, his regard for the law is slightly less than his blatant disregard for those whose lives he puts at risk every time he thinks he can handle his liquor and toodle about in his car.

The public at large LOST with the decision not to prosecute this doosh. Congratulations on postponing the inevitable.

Draxor (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 9:16 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I am not in the 'insurance' or the 'assurance' business. I don't spend my time in the world of 'If'. Nobody ever said DeNunzio was 'Innocent'. That issue is NEVER raised by a trial. There are only two verdict forms for any given charge: Guilty (proved) and Not Guilty (not proved). No such thing as an 'innocent' verdict form.
I evaluate evidence based upon fixed rules. Based upon that evaluation, I concluded early on (within weeks of taking on the task of defending DeNunzio) that the evidence would surely prove him guilty of the suspended license charge, and of nothing else. Therefore I offerd our esteemed DA that we should settle the case without fanfare or publicity or expense for what she could prove, and not one charge more. I suggested it should be up to the Judge to decide what appropriate punishment and/or rehabilitation should be. I never revoked that offer. My evaluation held up to the test of time,

As for Draxor, only a small minded or mentally ill person would openly wish violent physical harm upon another citizen. Hopefully you can recover from your obvious infirmity.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 10:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

OK esquire here I am. Sorry I don't check for your post on a daily basis. I have to agree with lawdy. This loser, Denunzio, keeps getting behind the wheel after drinking so it's just a matter of time. I truly hope he doesn't get caught after hurting someone innocent next time.

I don't believe I ever stated he was going to get convicted if retried. I have stated repeatedly he should be retried and if convicted he should be locked up.

I do hope his legal bills are so large he has no time to party. I wouldn't count on winning anything from the city. At the same time I hope the city doesn't cave to his demand for damages if that's what he decides to do. Denunzio has proven he is a menace and doesn't deserve anything.

Validated (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 10:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"Now comes the civil suit. Mr. DeNunzio has two lawyers, Darryl Genis and Thomas Beck. Expect the lawsuit to be filed soon."

Question for Darryl... Will we be reading rants from Mr. Beck as well, or does he act like a professional attorney?

Validated (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 10:40 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"I don't believe I ever stated he was going to get convicted if retried."

I hope that makes you feel validated.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 17, 2013 at 11:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sometimes I agree with Draxor, sometimes I disagree. This time, I hope he's wrong, but I know he's probably right.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 3:23 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Bookies are already taking bets.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 3:28 a.m. (Suggest removal)

No, but I'm sure TB will be reading rants from Validated.
BTW, use of the bb was emensely helpful in 'sampling' the jury pool, and you obviously didn't realize my presence here pre trial was a probing into the minds of the 'community' in order to prepare the case for trial. There is a method to my unconventional madness. I succeed where other lawyers fail precisely because I am unconventional, amd do not limit myself to the "Brooke's Brothers" thought process of traditional legal practice. The Internet did not exist when many lawyers were trained and many still fail to realize how it can be used to win in court. But you can keep criticizing me for writing my thoughts, as you write yours. The difference is I'm not mentally masturbating.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 6:51 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Just physically?

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 7:09 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Why is the PD "just now" starting an investigation into Tudor's actions against Denunzio? Did the chief, and others, defend the officer simply because they believed what he reported? How can anyone adequately defend Tudor and justify their support if they did not investigate, learn all the facts and review all the evidence in advance?

whatsinsb (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 7:21 a.m. (Suggest removal)

'not mentally masturbating'.......DG, are you kidding me.

every one of your posts is a glory stroke. your toes must curl every time you hit the send button.

lawdy (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 8:06 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Who would kid a 'Lawdy Mama".
strange brew.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 8:13 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"But you can keep criticizing me for writing my thoughts, as you write yours. The difference is I'm not mentally masturbating."

.... Now that's a comment. Isn't Clarence Darrow quoted as saying that? No, I don't think so. You're quite the intellectual there Darryl.

Validated (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 8:29 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Botany, I'm not aware of any video showing Denunzio driving.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 8:34 a.m. (Suggest removal)


“3rd DUI, driving on a suspended license, got your butt beat after refusing the legal commands of a law enforcement officer? Call attorney Darryl Genis.

He’ll cut the DA’s throat and she won’t even know it. He’ll defend you on the blogs in the middle of the night, and Darryl doesn’t mentally masterbate.”

You can use that free of charge Darryl...V

Validated (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 8:45 a.m. (Suggest removal)

DA won't seek retrial in foster abuse
April 18, 2013 5:42 AM
"The Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office will not file charges again against a 74-year-old former foster parent.
On Wednesday before Superior Court Judge Patricia Kelly in Santa Maria, Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Gresser said the prosecution won't refile the two charges against Mrs. Savoy."
Notice that the DDA did not 'Blame' Judge Kelly, nor did DA Dudley issue a Press Release promising a re-trial.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 10:07 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The video can be seen above at the bottom of the story.

mike (web content manager)
April 18, 2013 at 11:09 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Yeah, watch the video. Tudor should have "lit him up" after TUDOR ran the first stop sign. Why instead did Tudor wait so long and endanger so many other drivers lives by letting Denunzio drive all the way to Harry's? What a joke. All you cops and DA's bashing DG on here need to get a life.

bimboteskie (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 11:54 a.m. (Suggest removal)

mike (web content manager), JohnLocke: The full-footage video on Youtube shows Tudor running to his car, then turning the headlights on.

14noscams (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 7:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

(This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of use policy.)

Draxor (anonymous profile)
April 18, 2013 at 8:49 p.m.

Scatamoosh. But I don't need any of that. Found someone else's post which seems nicely to answer you:
COMMENT 235607

2011-11-24 08:30 AM

Amazing how many people so eagerly speak in extremely negative terms about Genis: first because they do so merely because they do not understand the role or importance of a constitutional defense attorney, and also because none of them have a legitimate basis for saying such nasty spiteful things, but it IS popular to lawyer bash. It is also amazing know many just don't understand the issue is about whether the cop acted properly or not. It is not about whether the accused is a good guy or a bad guy or somewhere in between.

Where is the net nanny when personal attacks take place on Genis? Is that an exception where baseless personal attacks are acceptable?

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 5:01 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Draxor, your last post is disturbing. It should be deleted. Genis is doing his job and doing it well. Wishing someone harm is unacceptable. You may not agree with the decisions of the jury, the judge, and the DA, but remember that Genis was not the one who made any of those decisions. I hope you can find peace, not just for you, but for the well-being of our society.

sbs124 (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 7:34 a.m. (Suggest removal)

And Draxor, what is a coward, if not a person who makes bold statements he does not have the courage to put his given name to? You hide behind anonymity. What's a 'draxor'?
Any relation to a Drexel?
What's a "Drexel"?

Things worked out well for Drexel.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 7:49 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Yes, and sword fights and beatings by cops are not part of our legal system. FYI.

sbs124 (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 8:18 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Thank you sbs124, for your reasoned response.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 9 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Will someone please just write DG and TD a check now and make both of them rich so that we don't need to spend more money defending the civil litigation.

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 10:07 a.m. (Suggest removal)

So far the city hasn't really displayed the best decision making to reach settlements in this case which is what I think you are alluding to. I am not sure if the DA will be the defense in the the civil case, or a city attorney would have to defend?

bimboteskie (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 11:20 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Unfortunately the job description of District Attorney(prosecute people), Police Officer (arrest people) and Drunk(drink too much, break the laws) are well defined.

Each has done their proper job in this case.

It's safer for Police Officers to act as they see fit.
Anyone else go to work and people try to kill you?

Don't like our Police? Move to Mexico and give them attitude, like not listening to their commands.

khiggler (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 12:10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

khigler - had the police done a "proper job," i.e., handled this traffic stop as trained, this would not have become an issue for discussion.

Police must be intelligent and as important they must use common sense and discipline in their daily contacts. As demonstrated in the Denunzio case, it is not always "safer for Police Officers to act as they see fit." Look at the video and justify how the officer saw fit to approach Denunzio; and, without provocation, except for reportedly not obeying Tudor's command to get back into his car, initiate an unnecessary physical contact? Did Denunzio do something other than (not obey) the officer? Grabbing Denunzio's arm is one issue but the excessive force began with the leg sweep by the officer. What is the officers explanation, "he didn't listen to my command." The old "contempt of cop" violation.

Yes, it might have been better for Denunzio to get back into his car, but, could the officer have placed himself in jeopardy (considering the circumstances up to that point)? At this point, what law did Denunzio violate by not gettting back into his car? What if there was an accessible weapon on the front seat of the car? Once a suspect is out of their car or home isn't it safer to keep them out until an issue has been resolved?

I suggest the officer was equally responsible for having an "attitude." Simply because a traffic violator does not respond to an officers command, their badge does not give them the authority to use unwarranted and excessive force. Why couldn't the officer talk with Denunzio without putting his hands on him? How many times during an officers career do you believe they will encounter people that will not respond as requested or ordered? Once or a hundred times doesn't really matter. What matters is the ability of the officer to "act" in a disciplined & professional manner based on the circumstances they encounter. In viewing the video I did not see Denunzio make any moves against the officer that would warrant the officers use of any force, much less excessive force.

There are people that don't like police but why suggest they move to Mexico or anywhere else?. If you, or other officer's can't handle the aholes you contact on a daily basis you might consider another profession. If you or other officer's worry too much about going to work where "people try to kill you," perhaps it would be in your best interest and that of your fellow officers; and the citizens you are hired "To Protect & To Serve" to look for another job. An officer with an attitude places themselves, the public and officers they work with in jeopardy. The officers apparent negative attitude, lack of discipline and lack of professionalism allowed a minor traffic stop to develop into a major incident!

What did I miss? What did Denunzio do that warranted the force exhibited? Unfortunately, I disagree the officer did a "proper" job in the Denunzio case.

whatsinsb (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 4:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"...use of the bb was emensely helpful in 'sampling' the jury pool,..."
-- DarrylGenis

Then you're an idiot. The posters on this, or any other, are not representative of the voting public from which the jury pool is taken.

BTW, can't you afford a spell checker?

SezMe (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 5:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Has it been established that the blogger "DarylGenis" is in fact the lawyer in question?

billclausen (anonymous profile)
April 19, 2013 at 6:21 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I just watched the entire video, and there is no way DiNunzio was driving impaired. He is not weaving - the cop car is, a couple of times at the beginning of the tape you can clearly see it over the fog line into the bike lane. Did anyone give the officer a blood test? DiNunzio's speed is constant, not erratic like that of a drunk driver (I followed a guy in a van last week weaving all over the highway and whose speed fluctuated between 50 and 70, btw I called 911 to report him, was afraid this dude was going to kill someone) He changes lanes without using his turn signal 3 times, as do about 40% of SB drivers, but each time the intent is clear, he is going around a slower car in the lane he wants to use, and returns to his lane right away, in perfect control of his vehicle. The officer literally attacks him and throws him to the ground within less than 2 seconds of his getting out of his car. Until now, I believed the police line about DiNunzio ignoring the officer and heading towards Gelson's but this clearly shows it to be untrue. DiNunzio looks simply puzzled and unsure of what the officer wants. The only question in my mind is why the jury deadlocked instead of acquitting the guy. Is it because he had prior offenses? Actually, I have two more questions. How much will he sue the City for? This is a clear case of police brutality if I ever saw one. And where is the leadership, both of the PD and the City? I can't believe that the officer involved still has a job.

blackpoodles (anonymous profile)
April 20, 2013 at 9:08 a.m. (Suggest removal)

You kidding? He has received awards both from SBPD and the city since then.
Beutel was promoted following revelations of her high crimes and misdemeanors.
Chief Sanchez has no leadership skills and sets a very bad example (read up on the Scoles case where he lied). The rank and file emulate him.

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 20, 2013 at 10:08 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I just watched the video and it is shocking. If that bald-head is Tudor, he should be severely chastised ...or else we in this city should be very, very afraid. I completely agree with blackpoodles. If de Nuncio's driving was impaired, why wouldn't he have been pulled over rather than allowed to drive for miles to the Gelson's parking lot! Should be a fat lawsuit against the city.

at_large (anonymous profile)
April 20, 2013 at 2:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

You can clearly tell from the video that DiNunzio's driving was not erratic at all. The only thing he did wrong is not use his turn signal before changing lanes. If the penalty for that is to be thrown to the ground and have your ribs bashed in, half the city is going to end up in the emergency room. And seriously, why is the police car weaving in and out of its lane at the beginning of the tape? If you showed me nothing but the trajectory of the two vehicles without telling me that one of them is a police car, and you asked me which one looks like a drunk driver, I would bet that Tudor is the one driving under the influence. Maybe it wasn't alcohol, but has he been tested for "roid" rage? As for the DA who declined to prosecute Tudor for assault, he needs to be fired. When is he up for reelection?

blackpoodles (anonymous profile)
April 20, 2013 at 9:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

to me darryl genis is a hero. i have never seen anyone stand up to the sbpd and they have been getting away with anything they want for decades especially when it comes to the INCREDIBLY LUCRATIVE DUI CASES. hopefully this guy sues the pants off the city and embarrasses some of these swaggering demons

redbunz (anonymous profile)
April 21, 2013 at 10:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Even IF the DA had been able to bamboozle a jury into convicting DeNunzio with their Warrantless Forced blood draw on the dirty floor of the jail, the conviction would have been thrown out based upon the SCOTUS decision of Missouri v McNeely (2013) 569 U.S. __; 2013 U.S. LEXIS 3160; 2013 WL 1628934; decided on April 17, 2013:

Here are the lessons to learn from this case:
1. Don't drive within 12 hours of consuming alcohol unless you want to go through the process of either fighting a DUI and winning or fighting it and losing or just losing; and
2. If you do chose to drink and then drive and you get pulled over, don't answer ANY questions, and don't perform ANY roadside tests, and if you get arrested, STATE that you WILL take a blood test but that you are not waiving ANY of your FOURTH AMENDMENT Protections, including the need for a warrant; and
3. Use your turn signals even though you don't have to so you don't get the living @#$% beat out of you by SBPD's finest; and
4. Stay in your car if you get pulled over so you don't get the living @#$% beat out of you by SBPD's finest.

The main reason I was able to win DeNunzio's case was that there were no roadside tests (blame Tudor) and no incriminating answers to cops questions (again blame Tudor because he was so busy covering his butt for the ADW he committed that he forgot to do a DUI questionaire on DeNunzio!

DarrylGenis (anonymous profile)
April 24, 2013 at 5:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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