A suspected car thief was wheeled into court in a restraint chair Wednesday because he bit a microphone, turned over a table and threatened a judge in court the day before, according to police.
Louis S. Scarpino appeared to be asleep during the preliminary hearing in Island County Superior Court, but Jail Chief Jose Briones said in an interview that Scarpino hadn’t been drugged and was awake; he just chose not to participate.
Island County Chief Criminal Deputy Eric Ohme asked Court Commissioner H. Clarke Harvey to set Scarpino’s bail at $100,000; Harvey agreed.
Scarpino is being held on suspicion of intimidating a judge and disorderly conduct. Ohme said Scarpino could face as many as five years in prison under the standard sentencing range if convicted of the charges.
Ohme said Scarpino has a “quite extensive” criminal history that includes burglary, vehicle prowls, drug possession and communicating with a child for immoral purposes. He was recently released from prison and labeled as “a violent offender” by the Department of Corrections, according to Ohme.
Briones said Scarpino has a history in the jail of assaulting staff, assaulting other inmates and spitting blood at corrections deputies.
Jail staff planned on strapping a Taser-like shocking device to Scarpino’s leg for court Wednesday, but Scarpino initially refused to go. Briones said it was actually Scarpino’s idea to go to court in the restraint chair. For added security, several police officers surrounded the defendant in court.