Earlier this month, a San Francisco jury acquitted a man of battery on a code enforcement officer following a two-day trial. The facts revealed that, upon seeing a “meter maid” approaching a parked car, the defendant decided to be a Good Samaritan and fed the expired meter for the owner. The parking enforcement officer became irate and began yelling at the defendant. After still issuing the ticket, the officer drove away when the defendant spit on the meter maid’s vehicle.
Had he been convicted under California’s misdemeanor “Battery on a Peace Officer” law, he would have faced up to one year in a county jail and a maximum $2,000 fine.
Fortunately, the jury recognized that, although the defendant’s act may have technically qualified as a misdemeanor battery on a peace officer…since a battery is any unwanted, unjustified, or offensive use of force on another person or on something closely connected to the person…they obviously didn’t feel he deserved to be punished for the alleged offense.
Kudos to a jury who allowed common sense to factor into their verdict!