NATIONAL NEWS

San Francisco jury finds homeless man not guilty in beating of businessman left with brain injury

Dec 22, 2023, 4:02 PM

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A San Francisco jury on Friday found a homeless man not guilty after being accused of using a metal pipe to beat a businessman who suffered a broken jaw, fractured skull and traumatic brain injury in an attack caught on video that fueled debate about crime and homelessness in the city.

Garret Doty, 25, was charged with three assault and battery charges for the April 5 beating of Don Carmignani. Doty pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors said Doty beat Carmignani in an act of revenge. But Doty’s defense attorneys said he was acting in self-defense after Carmignani sprayed him with bear spray.

The attack on Carmignani, a businessman who served briefly on a Fire Department commission, happened two days after the stabbing death of Cash App founder Bob Lee.

Lee’s killing unleashed a wave of criticism against city officials by prominent tech leaders. Among the critics was tech billionaire Elon Musk, who took to Twitter to mourn Lee’s death and blame San Francisco for what he called the city’s lax attitude toward crime. A tech consultant is awaiting trial in Lee’s killing.

The attack on Carmignani fueled a narrative of a city in chaos. But Doty’s defense attorney argued Doty acted in self defense and released surveillance video showing Carmignani spraying Doty before he began chasing him while wielding a metal pipe.

Deputy Public Defender Kleigh Hathaway said Carmignani had repeatedly doused unhoused people, including Doty, with bear spray.

“Self-defense can be fierce, it can be effective and it can be disabling,” Hathaway said. “And why wouldn’t it be? You’re fighting for your life.”

In closing arguments Tuesday, Assistant District Attorney Kourtney Bell conceded that Carmignani had a history of aggression, saying that he may have used bear spray on unhoused people in the Marina District on at least one occasion, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

A confrontation between Carmignani and Doty started after Doty and two others set up tents outside the home of Carmignani’s parents, who live next door to him in the upscale Marina District. Carmignani said in an interview with KPIX-TV that he had asked Doty to move away because they were blocking his parent’s entryway.

He said he called 911 but no one responded, so he went out to talk to the homeless people. and that the only thing he had on him was pepper spray.

“I didn’t go out there to fight anyone. I’m trying to get them down the road, go to the park,” Carmignani told the television station.

National News

Associated Press

3 Columbia University administrators put on leave over alleged text exchange at antisemitism panel

NEW YORK (AP) — Columbia University said it has placed three administrators on leave while it investigates allegations that they exchanged unprofessional text messages while attending a panel discussion about antisemitism on campus. The university said the administrators work for its undergraduate Columbia College, which hosted the panel discussion “Jewish Life on Campus: Past, Present […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Man charged in shooting that critically wounded Philadelphia officer, police say

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A 36-year-old Philadelphia man was charged Sunday with attempted murder in connection with a shooting that critically wounded a police officer after a traffic stop, police said. Ramon Rodriguez Vazquez also faces charges that include aggravated assault and home invasion, police said. The 31-year-old officer and his partner stopped a car carrying […]

4 hours ago

Associated Press

California boy, 4, who disappeared from campground found safe after 22 hours alone in wilderness

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — A 4-year-old California boy who wandered away from a campground in the Sierra National Forest was found safe after spending 22 hours alone in the wilderness, authorities said. A search-and-rescue team of about 50 officers and volunteers set out around 11 a.m. Thursday after the child was reported missing from the […]

5 hours ago

Associated Press

One man died and five others were hospitalized in downtown St. Louis shooting

ST. LOUIS (AP) — One man is dead and five others have been wounded in a downtown St. Louis shooting, police said. Police believe women were fighting in a park when men stepped in and drew firearms, according to a statement from St. Louis police. The man who died likely was in his mid-twenties and […]

5 hours ago

Associated Press

Michigan sheriff’s deputy fatally shot pursuing a stolen vehicle in Detroit

DETROIT (AP) — A Michigan county sheriff’s deputy was fatally shot while pursing a suspected stolen vehicle in Detroit, the Oakland County sheriff’s office said Sunday. Bradley J. Reckling, who was on duty in an unmarked car, was following a 2022 Chevy Equinox Saturday evening after the vehicle was reported stolen earlier in the day […]

6 hours ago

Associated Press

Authorities search in rural Colorado for suspect in shooting that left 1 dead, 2 injured

ALAMOSA, Colorado (AP) — Officers went door to door in a rural area of southern Colorado on Sunday as aircraft searched overhead for a man suspected of shooting three people, killing one, and then fleeing on foot into farmland after a failed carjacking. Suspect Henry Corral, 44, should be considered armed and dangerous, said police […]

6 hours ago

San Francisco jury finds homeless man not guilty in beating of businessman left with brain injury