Sacramento Regional Transit releases video of Taser incident
The man who fought with police officers at a Sacramento light-rail station in October was released from jail early Friday after pleading no contest to one reduced misdemeanor count of battery on an officer.
The Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office initially charged Golden Lee Smith, 34, of Rancho Cordova with three felony counts after the Oct. 28 incident at the 13th Street station, all of them involving resisting officers.
Smith, who is on parole for a battery conviction in San Jose several years ago, failed to stop when officers who were checking fares at the station called out to him. Smith had a valid light-rail pass. Officers tried to write him a ticket for failing to stop when they asked him to.
That led to a brief scuffle with three officers, one of whom used a stun gun on Smith. A bystander recorded the incident and posted it on Facebook. San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was among many who reposted or retweeted the video.
Smith had been in jail on a $500,000 bail since the late October confrontation. Smith told The Sacramento Bee that he was walking from one train to the other side of the track platform to catch another train and was not trying to flee. He said he did not initially hear the officers calling him. He complained that one of the officers approached him in an angry way.
Smith was sentenced in Sacramento Superior Court on Thursday to 73 days and was credited with serving that time, based in part on good behavior while in jail, according to officials. State Department of Corrections officials said they deferred to the District Attorney’s Office on parole-related charges. Prosecutors did not charge Smith with any parole violation.
The DA’s Office, in an email to The Bee, said it offered the reduced charges after reviewing the circumstances and consulting with the Regional Transit officer “who was lawfully engaged in the performance of his duties.”
“Based on the facts and circumstances of the case, this disposition serves the interests of justice for all concerned,” Assistant Chief Deputy District Attorney Robin Shakely wrote.
Regional Transit security chief Norm Leong said his agency conducted a review of the incident and talked with the three officers involved but did not offer details. “We ... had some administrative findings that were addressed and reviewed the incident with the officers discussing various options in handling these types of situations,” Leong wrote.