BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — A Kern County jury deliberated less than two hours before acquitting a man of all charges — including attempted murder — for shooting at a vehicle driven by his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend, according to the Kern County Public Defender’s Office.
William Saraiva was found not guilty on Thursday. He had faced more than 40 years to life in prison, according to a Public Defender’s Office release.
Saraiva had received multiple warnings that the boyfriend would be coming for him, the release said, and on Dec. 4 the boyfriend intentionally rammed Saraiva’s vehicle and forced him off the road. Saraiva defended himself by firing into the engine block, radiator and tires, the release said.
The boyfriend, uninjured, continued to chase Saraiva’s vehicle until his truck gave out, according to the release. Saraiva called 911, told deputies he had defended himself and showed them video footage of the incident but was placed under arrest, the Public Defender’s Office said.
Deputy Public Defender Jacob Evans represented Saraiva at trial, and “the jury recognized his right to defend himself from an attack and from the unsupported criminal charges,” the release said.