Former Dipshidiot of the day recipient found Guilty of two misdemeanors
Nearly two years after an off-duty California Highway Patrol officer was involved in a “road rage incident,” a Shasta County jury found Todd Garr guilty of misdemeanor battery and reckless driving.
The California Attorney General’s Office prosecuted the case, after the Shasta County District Attorney’s Office cited a potential conflict of interest.
Garr is scheduled to be sentenced July 25.
The trial at Shasta County Superior Court had been ongoing for more than a week.
After Thursday afternoon’s verdict, Joe Hoffman, Garr’s attorney, said his client is a “good man” and that it wouldn’t be appropriate to comment further before speaking to Garr.
Garr declined to comment after the verdict.
The case centered on an altercation on July 14, 2017, when Garr and a passenger were cut off by a big rig on Knighton Road in Redding. In response, Garr crossed into the oncoming lane to get in front of the truck and park. From there, he got out of his car, approached the big rig and stood on the step next to its driver’s side door for a confrontation.
This is where the stories of the prosecution and defense diverge: The prosecutor, Cliff Zall, argued that Garr grabbed the arm of the truck driver, Kenneth McFall. Hoffmann argued that Garr only engaged the driver verbally.
What happened next wasn’t contested by either party. McFall punched Garr, knocking Garr off the cab and leaving him unconscious in the middle of the road. The end of the encounter was captured by a dash cam and uploaded to YouTube, but it has since been deleted.
Zall said McFall called 911 following the incident but Garr did not. A log from the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office stated, “This will be a road rage incident.” McFall told authorities that two men had tried to “rip him out” of his truck.
In the trial, Zall argued that Garr acted recklessly when he crossed into the oncoming lane with limited visibility and that Garr battered the driver when he grabbed him. Zall also relied on an eye witness.
“Make no mistake, this was road rage by someone who should’ve known better,” Zall said in his closing argument, referencing Garr’s experience as CHP Northern Division assistant chief.
In the defense’s closing argument, Hoffmann sought to undermine the credibility of McFall and the eyewitness. Hoffman said when the witness saw Garr reaching into the cab of the truck, Garr was just doing so to hold onto the cab to help him stand up, rather than grab the arm of the driver.
Hoffman added that McFall had a motive to lie about the incident so he could justify having punched Garr.
Defense attorney Joe Hoffmann looks on during Todd Garr’s trial at the Shasta County Superior Court on Thursday, June 20. (Photo: Matt Brannon)
Hoffman pointed to contradictions in the eye witness’s testimony and told the jury, “You wouldn’t want your fate determined by someone so inconsistent.”
The case had been forwarded to the Attorney General’s Office because the Shasta County District Attorney, Stephanie Bridgett, has a social relationship with Garr, who was one of her husband’s supervisors.
Garr was employed with CHP Northern Division until April 17, 2018. A spokesperson declined to answer whether Garr was fired or if he resigned.
DAWG SAYS: NO CHP COMMAND GOING OFF IN PRESS CONFERENCES ABOUT HOW EMBARASSED THEY ARE ANYMORE AFTER THE SHAM OF A PRESS CONFERENCE IN THE CARSON CASE…….