SJPD Arrests Three Activists; One Defendant’s Bail Set at $500K for Suspected Vandalism

Rolling about 25 squad cars deep, police from San Jose and Santa Clara served a search warrant normally reserved for the most violent criminal cases to arrest an anti-racist activist for a single count of felony vandalism.

The judge who approved the San Jose Police Department’s declaration of probable cause for the Saturday night crackdown set the bail at $500,000 for a charge that’s had a zero-bail schedule since the pandemic started.

Nearly two days passed before Hailey S. found out what they were being accused of: vandalizing Mayor Sam Liccardo’s house on Aug. 28.

Police arrested Hailey—a 23-year-old member of HERO Tent, an organization that offers food and protective gear to protesters—one night after detaining two other activists suspected of vandalizing the Thomas Fallon statue during a Sept. 23 protest.

A spokeswoman for the mayor has yet to provide a damage estimate for the vandalism at Liccardo’s house, but city officials say it cost less than $2,400 to repair the Fallon statue off of Julian Street by Highway 87.

The arrestees say authorities never showed them copies of the warrants and that they didn’t know what, specifically, they were being accused of until SJPD’s media announcement days after the fact.

According to Hailey’s attorney, Santa Clara County Deputy Public Defender Carson White, that’s because police used what’s known as a Ramey warrant. Such warrants allow cops to make an arrest before any charges are filed and before even submitting a case to the District Attorney’s Office for filing consideration.

“Normally when someone is arrested on a criminal arrest warrant, they’re brought to court at the next available court date and they get a copy of criminal discovery and copy of the warrant,” White explains. “But when someone is arrested on a Ramey warrant, they’re held in custody until the DA makes a charging decision. That means, if they were arrested on a weekend or a Friday, they can be held in custody up to five or seven days.”

White says she had yet to see a copy of the Ramey warrant issued in Hailey’s arrest.

Hailey would likely not even have an attorney right now were it not for a pilot program, of which White is a part, offering pre-arraignment representation for defendants.

After meeting with Hailey at Elmwood late Sunday night, White and her supervisor, Pre-Arraignment Representation and Review Director Carlie Ware, filed a writ of habeas corpus challenging the constitutionality of Hailey’s detention and exorbitant bail amount.

In White’s view, the way police went about the arrest and the bail set in the case are way out of proportion to the alleged crime.

“This is egregious to me and really highlights the intersection between SJPD intimidating activists, the abusive practices of Ramey warrants and Santa Clara County law enforcement’s practice of booking people into custody and then never forwarding the case to the DA’s office for review—so the people never get a lawyer, can’t be brought to court and can’t be released by the DA rejecting the case,” she told San Jose Inside. “They just sit in custody for their maximum [statutory] period on unaffordable bail.”

In the habeas writ, White questions the court’s judgment in setting the bail so high.

“In general, the valid interests for which the state may set bail to incentivize an arrestee to return to court or to protect the public safety,” she writes. “Neither concerns of flight nor for public safety justify half-a-million-dollars bail in this case. Hailey has no criminal history. They have never been convicted of a crime nor ever missed a court date.”

To keep Hailey locked up in lieu of $500,000 is unreasonable and “clearly disproportionate to the offense involved,” White goes on to argue.

“This is that rare case ‘in which the amount of bail demanded would be so great as to shock the common sense, and be seen to be utterly disproportionate to the offense charged, and in such a case it [is the reviewing court’s] duty to interfere,’” the writ states. “There is no legitimate government purpose that merits the setting of half-a-million dollars bail. There is, however, an obvious illegitimate purpose for which half-a-million-dollars bail might be set in this case: retaliation for Hailey’s exercise of their First Amendment right to protest in support of local political action.”

Even Mayor Liccardo balked at Hailey’s bail amount.

“I don’t know anything about the specific details about the arrest or the defendant, but I don’t understand why bail would have been set so high by the court,” he told San Jose Inside. “In my days as a prosecutor, I saw much lower bail amounts set on people charged with violent assault. ”

In the press release sent to reports earlier this afternoon, San Jose police say they support the public’s right to peacefully protest, but that they will conduct “thorough investigations” to catch the people suspected of vandalism and arson.

Police have yet to explain why they opted for a Ramey warrant instead of going the usual route during any weekday over the past month or why they asked for such a high bail amount. Bail for 25-year-old Daniel Barrera was set at $0, while 30-year-old Jesilyn Faust had her bail set at $25,000. Faust has since paid her way out.

SJPD is still looking for a fourth suspect and urges anyone with information on her to call the Assaults Unit, offering cash rewards for tips leading to an arrest or conviction.

Faust, who was at the scene of Hailey’s arrest, says the police response scares her—but also makes her more determined.

“The police have really shown what kind of fascist stuff they’re about, how they treat protestors and activists,” Faust says. “This is something that has happened to protesters and activists historically. I think about that and I think this shows that we’re doing the right thing. We’re making them feel it.”

HERO Tent President Kiana Simmons says Hailey’s arrest and $500,000 bail are “absolutely ridiculous and absolutely unfounded.” As for the Ramey warrant, she adds: “It’s a loophole in the system where [they] can interrogate and harass you.”

Jennifer Wadsworth is the news editor for San Jose Inside and Metro Silicon Valley. Email tips to [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at @jennwadsworth. Or, click here to sign up for text updates about what she’s working on.

26 Comments

  1. > As for the Ramey warrant, she adds: “It’s a loophole in the system where [they] can interrogate and harass you.”

    Right.

    As far as rioters, looters, arsonists, and thugs are concerned, arrest and incarceration are “loopholes in the system.”

    Let’s see some accountability.

  2. Someone took down a sign in front of my home asking people to please wear a mask?

    Will half the SJPD set upon them with a Ramey warrant and haul them before a biased judge who will set a half million dollar bail for felony vandalism?

  3. There you go again Jennifer, always looking our for your peeps.

    Since they are going from state to state with Antifa, terrorizing the public, perhaps there are some Federal Charges involved as well?

  4. I don’t know whether the arrestee is guilty of the crime charged, but Mayor Liccardo and everyone else downplaying the gravity of the offense is completely misguided. Vandalizing the mayor’s house was transparently a crime of political terrorism designed to physically intimidate him — and others — for their politics. It is a far graver offense than anything Liccardo ever personally prosecuted because it strikes at the very heart of our system of governance. We simply cannot have elected officials targeted in their homes for their politics regardless of our perspective on those politics.

  5. Reminder:

    The white supremacist goon who threatened the life of Santa Clara County’s Public Health officer, which is straight up terrorism, had bail set at $100,000.

    While the person who tagged the Mayor’s house was arrested without a legitimate warrant and held for $500,000 bail.

    If you think the later is terrorism, all you’ve done is demonstrated you’re the actual threat to human freedom.

  6. Also, the legitimate people of San Jose-not white cis-male property owners, or white supremacist goons-have every right to push Licardo to eliminate the cops who shoot people in the back and get away with it.

    You’re on land stolen from the Ohlone, talking about the rights of white men is disingenuous.

  7. The people of San Jose are tired of these do nothing activists who injure innocent people and destroy property just so these morons can be on a 5 second news clip. Please go move to Chicago and demonstrate support for the african american victims of weekly homicides and such.

  8. > You’re on land stolen from the Ohlone, . . .

    And the Ohlone stole it from the Pueblo or whoever, who stole it from the Kickapoo or whoever, who stole it from the Aztecs or whoever, who stole it from . . . .

    The essence of tribalism is living at the expense of weaker tribes. Sometimes, the stronger tribes enslave or even eat the weaker tribes.

    The only reason the Ohlone are the heroes of your narrative is your ignorance of who the Ohlone were and what they did.

  9. Don, if I go and defecate outside of LICARDO’s home, would that be political terrorism too? This bail is so Liccardo’s ways! RECALL LICCARDO AND POPO OUTSIDE HIS HOME!

  10. Way to go SJPD. These criminals (those committing crimes) deserve 100% police services. These criminals pay taxes and deserve maximum service.

    Best slanted article I have read in a while.

  11. This person chose to vandalize a home. Regardless of how you feel things are going, and how to protest… someone’s home shouldn’t be up for grabs. Not a fan of Liccardo- but people who commit crimes regardless of the political climate should face a consequence. There are consequences to our actions and people need to be held accountable. This is on both sides of the law *shrugs*

  12. I am proud for those who stand up and protect and support the reason the cause ,,OUR CIVIL RIGHTS ARE BEING VIOLATED daily stop the racism.. I my self went to City and County as well to meetings in regards , community Policing being harrassed, stalked,intimidated, 5 years of this and Mayor, Chief as well City Council District 6 known about it 50 911 calls 19 complaints from sexual assault from Chp officer 7/2016 ,assault and battery 8/2018 during on call for duty on my parents premises, stalked, cyberbulling,harrasment,police code color of law 1983 code blue , allowing the intimidation and sexual inappropriate touch by massage therapist report to sjpd 10/24/19 and supervisor, social media defamation face book girl talk 3/2017 reported it, mother was hit driving out 4/19/19 as well my father hit 10/2016 my youngest not 21 alcohol poisoning rushed to sf hospital at baseball game my oldest hit a car who press the breaks, my dad,my daughter, my husband all got vehicles broken into 2019 tools gone from my father, basically 19 complaints oh retaliation with county ,chp,I was chased by sjpd 10/24/16 apprehended gun point, dispatch still works for sjpd . Basically Mayor got a taste but I don’t condone the violence, and if you all wanna call this protesters horrible names when none of my complaints taken seriously ask victims program DA office they were told not to buy yet GROWN COUNTY EMPLOYEES and Mayor known n I am facing some serious charges that , City atty wants me to be evaluated for quasi excuse Retaliation is no joke My community placed me in danger yes district 6 shame on the system , that innocent people get victimized , is time for Mayor to seriously take action on my case 19 none to DA .. street cameras dont lie or police cameras either.. Humanity is getting worst by the day we need prayers we all need one another some how .. ps I got no reason to lie this is public corruption using tax money power of abuse the ovw received grant money for victims like myself is not the money is the principle respect and we all have freedom of speech yes but doesn’t mean to go commit violance

  13. It won’t help those semi-unlawfully detained, but using a Ramey warrant to arrest them?? That is a complete misuse of the statute and any magistrate or cop signing their name to that doesn’t really believe in the law, they just hate protesters. It will all come out in the wash…and I look forward to reading it when it does.

  14. As a black man living in “liberal” northern California I finally relent. I get it…i will not accept it but I get it. This country hates African Americans and there are far too many racist supporters within this country. I will work on a plan to uproot myself and as many African Americans up out of this country as possible before it is too late. You guys will really sit and argue about the value of a human life as if you have the right. And your hatred is so tangible that you’ll ignore your own destruction just to inflect more pain. These politicians don’t care for you anymore than the activist they locked up…you can watch them tear this whole state up and not bat an eye. You can have america id rather go where im seen as human.

  15. I believe the bail is exorbitant because this woman comes from an affluent family that can easily afford the money. It shouldn’t be any easier for rich people to commit crimes and get out of jail.

  16. The headline implies it was the SJPD that set the bail. This was clearly intentional, accomplished by the inclusion of the otherwise unnecessary word “setting.” This raises a question: what type of readers were targeted by this cheap and offensive attempt to increase interest? Was it those savvy in the ways of the judicial system, those interested in all such stories about their city, or those belonging to that depressingly large population of ignorant and emotionally-unstable young progressives? Well, it couldn’t be the first group, for they would catch the misrepresentation and smell the slant, making them even less likely to read the story. It also couldn’t be the second group, for their interest in their city is such that neither deception or hyperbole is necessary. That leaves the third group, whose hatred for all things police has left them eager for the chance to salivate, snarl, and distract themselves from their otherwise miserable lives. Fortunately for San Jose Inside this last group, having already been acclimated to having its chain pulled (for evidence of this, see the examples in the comments above), is far too dense to notice or take offense.

  17. These people “protesting” are akin to children writing on the walls when they’re 5. Good I say. I hope they pass a measure where if one is found guilty of a riot related charge the individual loses government program benefits for life. Of course they can get em back. But they have to write and publish an apology (I’m a dummy) letter to the U.S.A. 5000 word minimum. 😄

  18. In response to the headline, and arrest of criminals who want to intimidate and threaten public officials: good…you got what you deserve. Take accountability. Make better choices.

  19. PHU TAN ELLI: and the DA not filing charges means this whole thing is legit, right? Sure looks legit to me.

  20. This article is trash and a reason why this country is failing by the day. Media is slanting a story with political influence and distorting the real and present facts to make it align with their perceived political opinion. You should have your credentials revoked and be canceled from the internet.

  21. @ Try Logic

    Nice try, but the meaning behind the DA’s actions cannot be known absent further information. In other words, we shouldn’t — because it would be illogical — jump to conclusions.

  22. > As a black man living in “liberal” northern California I finally relent. I get it. This country hates African Americans and there are far too many racist supporters within this country.

    > You can have america id rather go where im seen as human.

    The white radical trust fund children check in with fake narrative.

    Probably BLM co-founder Shaun King (aka “Talcum X”) or Susan Rosenberg.

  23. LOL, Liberal politicians are not to be attacked. This man should have attacked John Q citizens house, as this is no longer a crime here. How stupid can you be attacking a liberal mayors house?
    Don’t suppose he was white too?

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