Antioch Mayor Thorpe pleads not guilty to March DUI trial set for Oct. 12

Antioch Mayor Lamar Thorpe posted a video on his mayor’s Facebook page on Saturday, March 19, 2022, apologizing for being arrested for DUI. Screenshot

By Allen D. Payton

On June 29, 2022, Antioch Mayor Lamar Thorpe entered pleas of not guilty to the charges of Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol and DUI with Blood Alcohol Content of .08% or higher, for his arrest in the early morning of March 19. A Readiness Conference has been scheduled for Sept. 29 with a trial date set for October 12 at 8:30 a.m. in the criminal division of the Wakefield Taylor Courthouse in Martinez. (See related articles here and here)

Since in a video Thorpe posted on his official Facebook page on March 19, he admitted to having one drink with dinner, he was asked, via email in August why he didn’t plead guilty, accept his punishment and get this behind him for the benefit of himself and the city. He was also asked what he was hoping to accomplish by a jury trial, if he was hoping to be found not guilty and isn’t the trial just a waste of taxpayer funds and the court’s time. Thorpe did not respond.

An effort to reach Thorpe’s attorney, listed as Greg Scanlon, was unsuccessful. However, Walnut Creek-based criminal defense attorney Peter Johnson, the co-author of the California DUI Defense book, was asked why someone who admitted publicly that they had an alcoholic beverage prior to an arrest for DUI would plead not guilty and take their case to trial.

“A drink with dinner doesn’t put you under the influence,” he stated. “There’s no law against drinking and driving. He didn’t admit to the crime. They have to prove he was guilty.”

“Chemical testing for alcohol is not necessarily reliable. There are errors involved with the testing,” Johnson continued. “Just because a person blows into a machine, that’s not necessarily an accurate number. Why should somebody plead guilty or no contest if they didn’t commit a crime?”

“There are substantial problems with estimating a person’s blood alcohol level from either a blood or a breath test,” he added.

Following is the information provided to the Herald about the case: Details.Lamar Thorpe DUI Case # 01-22-00647

Thorpe, Lamar Anthony
Description Statute Level Date:

1VC23152(a)-M: Driving Under Influence of Alcohol 000214658023152(a) Misdemeanor 03/19/2022

2VC23152(b)-M: Driving Under Influence of Alcohol 000214658123152(b) Misdemeanor 03/19/2022
01-22-00647 | The People of the State of California vs. Thorpe, Lamar Anthony
Case Number:01-22-00647
Court: Criminal – Martinez-Wakefield Taylor Courthouse
File Date: 05/20/2022
Case Type: Misdemeanor
Case Status: Own Recognizance
06/29/2022 Plea
Judicial Officer :Stark, Nancy Davis
1 – VC23152(a)-M: Driving Under Influence of Alcohol 0002146580
Not Guilty
2 – VC23152(b)-M: Driving Under Influence of Alcohol 0002146581
Not Guilty
05/20/2022 Initial Complaint Filed
05/23/2022 Notice to Appear
05/23/2022 District Attorney’s Arraignment Position
06/15/2022 Miscellaneous
Comment – Documents copied and sent to, GREG SCANLON.
06/29/2022 Arraignment on Complaint
Original Type – Arraignment on Complaint
Judicial Officer – Stark, Nancy Davis
Hearing Time – 8:30 AM
Result – Held
09/28/2022 Readiness Conference
Judicial Officer – Hiramoto, Joni T
Hearing Time – 8:30 AM
10/12/2022 Misdo Jury Trial
Judicial Officer – Hiramoto, Joni T
Hearing Time – 8:30 AM

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Details.Lamar Thorpe DUI Case # 01-22-00647
Details.Lamar Thorpe DUI Case # 01-22-00647

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