An emergency order to release non-violent inmates from jail due to COVID-19, appears to have been used to release a violent sexual assault suspect, according to an East Bay city official.
The council that wrote the order says that was not the intention.
“When the bail motion was made we strenuously objected to it,” Alameda County District Attorney spokesperson Teresa Drenick said.
“The attorney specifically petitioned Judge Reardon to reduce his bail,” Livermore Mayor John Marchand said.
There is controversy regarding the an Alameda County Superior Court Judges decision to reduce the bail, paving the way to release 61-year-old Gregory Vien from Santa Rita Jail.
Vien was arrested back in November as a suspect in a pair of violent sexual assaults that occurred back in 1997 — One in Union City, the other in the town of Livermore where he is now on home confinement.
“The gentleman was being held on $2.5 million of bail. We believe that poses a danger to the community,” Drenick said.
However, after Vien’s attorney told the judge her client has a medical condition, the judge reduced Vien’s bail down to zero.