A Solano County Superior Court Judge again has rescheduled a preliminary hearing date in the felony child sex assault case against former Vacaville attorney James Glenn Haskell.
Judge John B. Ellis previously scheduled Haskell, 40, for the hearing on Friday in Department 23, but a court-records search Wednesday showed the defendant, who was last in court on Nov. 9, instead will return at 10 a.m. Feb. 17 to the Justice Center in Fairfield.
The new court date follows a mid-September revelation that the case grew more complex not only with a motion to increase bail but also with Deputy District Attorney Shelly Moore filing several new serious felony charges.
As previously reported, Haskell, a former associate attorney with the Reynolds Law firm in Vacaville and now unemployed and living in Southern California, has sold his home in north Vacaville and remains out of custody after posting $240,000 bail in May. He is represented by Fairfield criminal defense attorney Thomas Maas.
Moore filed an amended criminal complaint on Sept. 15, adding five more counts, four felony charges alleging sexual abuse and one misdemeanor charge alleging physical abuse of a young victim and three of the victim’s siblings.
The new charges, based on an interview with one of the children, adds to the original 13 counts, 10 felonies and three misdemeanors. The initial felony allegations span sexual penetration by a foreign object while the minor victim was unconscious to corporal injury to a child to assault, including strangulation, likely to produce great bodily injury.
The five new charges include four counts of a lewd act on a child and one count of cruelty to a child by inflicting injury, crimes that allegedly occurred between October 2018 and October 2019, according to the amended complaint.
Moore’s revised complaint also indicated the children were “particularly vulnerable” and alleged that the manner in which the crime was carried out “indicates planning, sophistication, or professionalism;” Haskell “took advantage of a position of trust or confidence to commit the offense;” and the allegations “constitute additional aggravating factors.”
In court on Sept. 15, Haskell again pleaded not guilty to the new charges. If convicted at trial, he faces two life sentences, Moore told The Reporter after the morning proceeding.
In his opposition to a bail increase motion, Maas argued that Haskell could not raise an additional $1.1 million in bail, saying the amount “is tantamount to denial of bail” and, therefore, a violation of the Eighth Amendment, a reference to excessive bail. Maas also asserted that the increased bail would violate the so-called “Humphrey decision,” a right in the state Constitution for a defendant to obtain release on bail from pretrial custody, except in certain cases of capital crimes, violent or sexual felonies, and serious threats of violence.
Additionally, Maas noted Haskell, who has no prior criminal record, has been fired from the Reynolds firm, is unable to get a job given the ongoing court proceedings and has surrendered his passport to the court.
On Nov. 7 the court received a pretrial services report from the Solano County Probation Department.
It is unclear from publicly available records if Ellis granted Moore’s motion for a boost in bail.
Maas suggested the defendant has had no contact with the victims since he was arrested and booked into Solano County Jail in May.
Maas added in his filing that one of the four children, a boy, was removed from temporary placement and was alleged to have committed sexual abuse against another minor, claiming during an interrogation that Haskell had “pulled and kicked his penis.” Another child alleged Haskell “years ago had repeatedly stroked her thigh.”
Court records show that Haskell — an Eagle Scout, a Brigham Young University graduate, and member of the California and District of Columbia bar associations, according to biographical information at the Reynolds office website prior to its deletion — was arrested by Solano County Sheriff’s deputies on a warrant issued May 3.
He posted $170,000 bail on May 4, but court records also show that he appeared to be arrested again, on May 5, when he posted additional bail of $70,000, bringing the total to $240,000.
On May 4, Haskell also was subject to a criminal protective order, prohibiting him from having any contact with four youths listed in the order.
The Solano County District Attorney’s Office filed its complaint on May 3 and, the following day at arraignment, Haskell pleaded not guilty to all counts, denied all enhancements and the allegations, court documents indicate.
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