FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The woman who called for help the night a Firebaugh Police officer is accused of assaulting his wife told a different story today on the witness stand.
Jose Ramos Guerrero resigned shortly after his arrest. His attorney says not because he was guilty, but basically forced to by city leaders. Guerrero and his wife claim he never threw the punch that landed her a nose bleed and knocked out. On Monday, their friend backed up the couples claims.
Jose Ramos Guerrero had a barbecue at his Mendota home in February, and by accounts of those who were there, the party was filled with drinking, dancing, and fun-- until a fight broke out.
"You will hear testimony from the alleged victim in this case, Corina Nunez, who is the alleged victim in this case. And you will hear her testimony that her husband did not strike her, nor has he ever struck her," said Linden Lindahl, defense attorney.
Cameras were not allowed to record witness testimony, including claims by the officer's wife, that she was struck when she tried to break up a fight between others -- not her husband.
The star witness in the case is Laura Pano Garcia. She is the one who called 911, not for an officer, but an ambulance. "You will hear evidence that she walked out of the house and said, 'I called because my friends husband hit her, he knocked her out,'" said Amy Freeman, Deputy District Attorney.
On the stand, Pano Garcia said she lied because she was fighting with her husband and had dislocated his jaw. However, that was not included in any officers reports.
The woman at the center of the felony charges said she was knocked out after she realized her nose was bleeding and tilted it back to squeeze the top, then fell over her sofa and was briefly unconscious.
The defense also claims the officers were irritated at the scene after the suspect referred to them as "rookie officers."
Jose Ramos Guerrero was a Firebaugh officer for 3 years. He is out on bail, but if convicted could spend up to 8 years in prison.
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