Friday, April 18, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
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Cairns not guilty of felonies, guilty of lesser charges

KEVIN CAIRNS and attorney Steve Tapson watch as the jury leaves the courtroom Thursday after bringing back a guilty verdict on five misdemeanor counts and not guilty of three felony charges. Cairns, owner of Dante's restaurant faced a slew of charges stemming from several different altercations with carsick motorists. Democrat photo by Krysten Kellum

KEVIN CAIRNS and attorney Steve Tapson watch as the jury leaves the courtroom Thursday after bringing back a guilty verdict on five misdemeanor counts and not guilty of three felony charges. Cairns, owner of Dante's restaurant faced a slew of charges stemming from several different altercations with carsick motorists. Democrat photo by Krysten Kellum

By
From page A1 | March 19, 2012 | 9 Comments

At 4:35 p.m. on Thursday, March 15, the verdict came back on the Kevin Cairns trial.

Ten minutes later, the verdict was read to a courtroom with only a few friends of the Cairns’ in attendance.

Kevin Michael Cairns was found not guilty on the first and third counts, assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury, but was found guilty of a lesser, misdemeanor charges of assault.

On the second count, vandalism in excess of $400, Cairns was found not guilty, but was found guilty of vandalism less than $400.

He was found guilty on the fifth count, exhibiting a deadly weapon, a misdemeanor charge.

Finally, he was found guilty of a special allegation that he had been released on bail when he committed the crime associated with the fourth count.

Cairns faces up to a year in prison, his attorney, Steve Tapson said, “hopefully it’ll be more modest.” He said the charges should have been originally misdemeanors, not felonies, and that it was “overkill. The jury saw that, fortunately.”

The restaurateur said he was “not happy” with the verdict. “I want to be acquitted, I’m not guilty of anything,” he said outside the Courthouse. “Not letting the evidence of my past history with deputy (Simon) Brown, it’s not fair.”

He also said that it was not fair that his character witnesses were stymied by court orders of what past evidence they could give testimony about, hampering them from actually giving the jury a good sense of Cairns’ character. He then left the Courthouse to go to his son’s volleyball game.

As the verdict will be sent to the Probation Department for review and recommendation, the sentencing hearing will take place on May 4 at 1:30 p.m.

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Discussion | 9 comments

  • BeezMarch 15, 2012 - 7:45 pm

    I would like to congratulate the District Attorney for closing the only good restaurant on Highway 50, causing a man to loose his business that supported his family and contributed to the county tax base, wasting tax payers money and, jurors time on a two week trial that resulted in three misdemeanors. It saddens me to see the justice system abused in such a manner and those who took an oath to uphold the law, the cause of the abuse.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Walking TallMarch 15, 2012 - 10:47 pm

    Gotta have that win record don't ya Vern, even if they are only little ones that should have never been filed, what a waste of time and money. Why weren't the people who assaulted Kevin ever charged? Oh yeah they don't live here and don't know you or maybe they gave $$.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • KristinMarch 16, 2012 - 9:39 am

    Very unfortunate that this man got away with ridiculous behavior.... hopefully the lessor charges are enough to make him change his little attitude!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • T PiperMarch 16, 2012 - 10:12 am

    K, all the tourists have been rerouted to your house to pee,poop,vomit,trespass and assault you and your love ones. Let's see if you get mad, yell ,use bad words and defend yourself without ever touching anyone and get arrested. Just wait and see, how you respond to all of this.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • CatherineMarch 16, 2012 - 11:06 am

    If Mr. Cairns had a No Trespassing sign on his property and basic trespassing laws were broken (entering private property and refusing to leave when asked, entering and doing damage, and perhaps interfering with business activities) shouldn't Mr. Cairns now file complaint against all trespassing parties? Should he file against the police department, which seems to be claiming that the laws are too fuzzy and complex to enforce? Or should he just realize that when a kid is barfing, parents are fiercely protective of that child's needs and he'll have to accommodate them? Maybe all three.

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  • RufusMarch 16, 2012 - 3:49 pm

    Given that it was a restaurant parking lot, a no trespassing sign doesn't seem to fit.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • LocalMarch 16, 2012 - 9:10 pm

    Should have made it PAY parking ONLY! . Customers get a voucher to park free, a lot easier than court, lawyers and the broken legal system. . How about $15 to park or go and eat!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Still WaitingMarch 18, 2012 - 3:58 am

    You have never been to Dante's because you would see that your suggestions are worthless, it's the rude behavior and pig in the people (about 2%) who do these things in a public parking lot. This man did nothing but use words to attempt to stop the trashing of his home and business and for that the Sheriff and DA arrested and brought him to trial.When they could not admit that they were wrong they piled on the charges to make themselves right. At no time did he ever strike anyone who didn't assault him first, but he is the one who paid the price for defending his family, employees and himself. Sad way El Dorado County serves up justice and protects it's hard working citizens

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • KenApril 30, 2012 - 10:27 pm

    To all of you people defending Kevin, this is for you. Driving home from school my cell phone rang and I pulled into the first place I could safely stop and answer it. It was a recruiter for the US Army. About 30 seconds into my very professional conversation, the little Italian man came out screaming and cussing at me saying that I had to pay him 30 dollars for pulling off the road or I was going to be arrested. I would understand him not wanting me to stop if it the restrant was open, but it wasn't. I hope that this freak gets the full one year sentence!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
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