By Bay City News Service
The Sonoma County District Attorney's Office is reviewing new information it has received about allegations that a caregiver assaulted several patients of the Sonoma Developmental Center with a stun gun last September.
According to an article published this week by California Watch, a team of reporters with the Center for Investigative Reporting, an anonymous caller accused caregiver Archie Millora of abusing at least 11 of the severely disabled patients at the Center in Eldridge near Sonoma around Sept. 26, 2011.
Sonoma County Chief Deputy District Attorney Spencer Brady said the Sonoma Developmental Center's in-house police, the Office of Protective Services, found a loaded 40-caliber Glock handgun and a Taser stun gun in Millora's vehicle after it received the anonymous tip.
The Office of Protective Services did an administrative investigation and determined the Taser in Millora's vehicle was not the weapon that was used to inflict the wounds on the patients, Brady said.
The Sonoma County District Attorney's Office decided there was not enough evidence to charge Millora with assault after it reviewed the OPS's administrative investigation report.
"We had the OPS opinion the Taser that was located was not the weapon that was used," Brady said. "There were no witnesses and the Taser's probes did not line up with the width and distances of the wounds on the patients," Brady said.
Millora was arrested on Feb. 11 on misdemeanor charges of carrying a concealed weapon in a vehicle and carrying a loaded firearm in a public place on Sept. 27, 2011, according to Sonoma County Superior Court records.
He pleaded no contest on April 2 to carrying a concealed weapon in a vehicle. The prosecution dismissed the charge of carrying a loaded firearm in a public place, according to court records.
Millora was sentenced to three years' probation and 20 days in the Sonoma County jail. He was required to turn himself in at the North County Detention Facility on May 24 and was ordered not to own, use or possess any weapons.
Millora applied for a work release program in lieu of his 20-day jail sentence but was rejected. He then requested supervised electronic home confinement, but the court records do not state if it was approved. He paid a $190 fine imposed by the court by July 2.
After the Sonoma County District Attorney's Office decided there was no evidence to file assault charges against Millora, it received from California Watch a document that was leaked to the media by someone in the state Health and Human Services Agency, Brady said.
"They (the Health and Human Services Agency) never gave us a report. Now that we have it, we want to get to the truth of the matter," Brady said.
"We will review the entire case from a legal and factual standpoint," Brady said.
"We'll review any evidence and see what the legal issues are since he (Millora) already was charged and pled (no contest)", Brady said.
In response to the California Watch article, Sonoma County Sheriff Steve Freitas said the Office of Protective Services notified his department of the investigation in September or early October 2011. The state had its own investigators on the case, Freitas said.
"They told us they had a suspect identified but didn't need our help," he said. "We told them if anything changes to get in touch."