We should know sometime today whether Santa Barbara businessman Michael Stinchfield will retain a private criminal attorney or request to represent himself in court.
Stinchfield faces 13 felonies, including a hate crime, for allegedly attacking two women in his Garden Street home with a baseball bat. Earlier this month, the 55-year-old defendant requested new legal representation through the public defender’s office.
However, the presiding judge denied Stinchfield’s request after reviewing his lengthy list of properties, including four homes in the Santa Barbara area. Stinchfield was in the process of trying to open a restaurant in downtown Santa Barbara when his legal troubles began to mount. He was arrested in September after a televised police pursuit that began near Faria Beach and ended in Hollywood.
The defendant was arrested a second time on November 2nd after allegedly holding two women against their will in his home. Police say he sexually assaulted and beat them. Stinchfield remains locked up without bail after a local judge deemed him “extremely dangerous.”