Kings County charges Lemoore city councilmember with four felonies

LEMOORE, Calif. -- More than three weeks after her arrest, criminal charges were officially filed against Lemoore City Councilmember Holly Blair on Wednesday.

On the same day, Action News learned Visalia attorneys Marguerite Melo and John Sarsfield were no longer representing her.

It's unclear if Blair has a new attorney.

She is out on bail and is scheduled to be arraigned on the charges next Friday.

"This case is relatively shocking," said Kings County Assistant District Attorney Phil Esbenshade. "I've seen the evidence myself. Fortunately, a portion of what occurred was captured on a police body cam video and it's rather shocking and it's (a) very dangerous situation, so we're taking it very seriously."

Esbenshade is referring to body camera video recorded in the rear parking lot of the Lemoore Police Department.

He says an officer turned his camera on after Blair had entered the lot.
Action News filed a public records request to obtain that footage, but was denied by Lemoore Police.

"It showed Ms. Blair making a slow U-turn and then accelerating at a very high rate of speed towards a police officer who was entering the parking lot from the street," Esbenshade said.

In addition to the officer, Blair is also accused of nearly striking others on her way into the lot seconds before, including the widow of a fallen Lemoore Police Officer and her 9-year-old daughter.

They were there to take part in a procession that was part of a police chaplain's cross-country trip to raise awareness about mental health and law enforcement.

Blair has been charged with three felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon for what happened in the lot, plus another felony count of evading an officer for the pursuit that followed.

She's also charged with misdemeanors including child endangerment (police say her son was along for the dangerous ride), resisting a peace officer for refusing to get out of her SUV once the pursuit stopped (Esbenshade says there is video of that incident too), and reckless driving in a parking lot.

She faces eight years in prison if convicted of all charges.

Esbenshade says she could also lose her driving privileges forever if convicted of the assault with a deadly weapon charges.