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Furloughed inmate attacks police and citizen with cane

by Bill Knowles

Mug shot of Raymond David Smith taken after he was arrested on Nov. 25, 2017. Smith is currently in jail awaiting court. Photo courtesy Trinidad City Police.

TRINIDAD — Bad luck wasn’t just with the turkeys this Thanksgiving. A Trinidad jail inmate on furlough over the Thanksgiving weekend found little to be thankful for after he took a walking stick from the Alta Convenience Store and began attacking property, a Trinidad citizen, and a couple of law enforcement officers, according to an affidavit filed by police.

The furlough was granted by 3rd Judicial District Judge Leslie Gerbracht on Nov. 22, 2017, so that Raymond David Smith, 25, of Trinidad could help his elderly mother, Marecella Cortez, move into the house of Smith’s step-grandmother. Smith was not able to make bond and the two elderly ladies would have to move all of Cortez’s belongings by themselves.

The request was for a two-day furlough so Smith could help the ladies make the move.

Smith was in jail awaiting trial on numerous counts of criminal assault, including second degree strong-arm assault on a police officer, theft, resisting arrest, and obstructing a police officer.

Police were called on Nov. 25, 2017, at around 4:20 pm to the 500 block of State St. at the First National Bank ATM, in Trinidad on a report of a male who was brandishing a stick and striking objects with it. While in route, the police were advised that the suspect had also threatened Arturo Acuna with a screw tipped bamboo rod and a lock with a lanyard combination while he made the threats.

Officers later discovered Smith had used the stick to beat on parked vehicle at the Great Wall Chinese restaurant, while yelling and screaming.

Trinidad Police Corporal Jason Villotti, recognized Smith and knew that he had previously attacked law enforcement officers. He ordered Smith to drop the stick. When Smith refused to do so, Villotti used his Taser. One of the probes failed to make contact with Smith. He received less then a full shock from the Taser but still went to the ground.

Smith was taken to Mount San Rafael Hospital under secure transport after he had refused to cooperate with EMS personnel. While at the hospital, Smith attacked one of the police officers, biting him on the left bicep, but didn’t break any skin during the attack.

Smith has been charged with three felonies: criminal attempted aggravated robbery, menacing, and criminal attempted second-degree assault on a peace officer. He has also been charged with three misdemeanors: criminal mischief, resisting arrest, and disorderly conduct. And for the theft of the bamboo stick from the Alta Convenience Store.

Smith is back in jail.

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