Harry Edward Smith, an 82-year-old Santa Rosa man, has been charged with attempted murder after he allegedly ran down a bicyclist on a golf course according to news reports. The Sonoma County District Attorney’s office claimed that Smith used his 1997 Toyota Avalon to run the bicyclist down as the victim pedaled through Oakmont Village.
The alleged victim, 47-year-old Toraj Soltani, was pedaling through the retirement community where Smith lives when the attack started, according to police. Three days after the alleged attack occurred, Smith was arrested on suspicion of assault and battery on August 18. On Friday August 31, Smith was placed back in custody after being charged with attempted murder and held on a $1 million dollar bail.
News reports say according to police officers, Soltani was trying to get away from Smith after he yelled at Soltani and attempted to hit him; he bicycled down a cart path on the Oakmont Golf Course to try to escape Smith. Allegedly, Smith followed Soltani in his Toyota down the cart path and struck him. Soltani sustained a broken wrist in the incident.
Rose Zoia, an attorney and bicyclist, came forward after police made a plea for the public’s assistance in identifying the assailant. Zoia told police that as she was riding her bicycle through Oakmont Village in October of last year, an elderly motorist yelled at her saying that she was too young to be riding through his village. Zoia tried to calm the situation, but Smith allegedly continued to yell. She was able to pick him out in a photo lineup and had memorized his license plate number during the October incident.
If convicted of attempted murder, Smith will face up to six years in the county jail.
Santa Rosa criminal defense attorneys are skilled and capable in protecting the legal rights and freedom of those charged with attempted murder and other serious criminal offenses. If you have been arrested for any crime no matter how minor or serious it may seem, consult with an aggressive Santa Rosa criminal defense lawyer.