Goleta gunman Charles Quinn pleaded not guilty to 15 felony and misdemeanor charges after appearing in court last week following his release from Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.
Quinn allegedly opened fire on two citizens and three officers with a pellet gun in the Camino Real Marketplace on Jan. 15 and was hospitalized at the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital for several gunshot wounds after officers returned fire. Detectives charged Quinn with eight felony and misdemeanor counts including second-degree armed robbery, three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, two counts of resisting an armed officer and failure to register as a sex offender in the state of California.
According to Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron, court proceedings were delayed until Quinn was discharged from the hospital.
“We are still at the earliest stage of criminal prosecution,” Barron said. “We will just have to wait and see what evidence comes out of preliminary hearing.”
Attorney Jeff Chambliss, the public defender for the case, said Quinn suffered severe injuries during the confrontation.
“To me it is amazing that he survived,” Chambliss said. “It is rare to see gunshot wounds that go entirely through the body … but you can clearly see three exit wounds spaced pretty evenly down his spine.”
Chambliss said the hospital released Quinn into law enforcement custody last week once his health stabilized.
“He was discharged from Cottage Hospital about a week ago and seems to be doing much better,” Chambliss said. “When I first saw him he was in [a] medically induced coma and over time he has gotten better … but we have not spoken to his doctor and are not sure about any long term prognosis.”
The sheriff’s department placed three officers involved in the confrontation on paid administrative leave following the incident and is conducting an investigation in compliance with department policy. Quinn is scheduled to appear again in court on Feb. 17 to set the date for his preliminary hearing.
Chambliss said the meeting is the first of many steps in the court procedure.
“It is going to take some time for the case to go to trial or to reach some agreement,” Chambliss said. “We are still just in the very premier stages of handling the case.”