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Sunday, April 1, 2018

A Not So Quiet Easter Morning at Walmart

     At eleven o'clock on Easter Sunday morning, March 31, 2013, Haamid Ado Zaid drove to the Walmart store on the east side of San Jose, California. After circling the parking lot a couple of times in his red Oldsmobile Cutlass, the 33-year-old sideswiped two parked cars before plowing through the front entrance of the building.

     Twenty feet into the store, Zaid jumped out of his car carrying a blunt object. As seventy customers and employees looked on in horror, Zaid started attacking people with the weapon. He struck one of his victims, a cashier, on the head causing serious injury. The employee had to be hospitalized.

     Officers with the San Jose Police Department, following a struggle, took Zaid into custody. He was charged with assault with a deadly weapon, hit-and-run (the parked cars), driving under the influence of drugs, and resisting arrest.

     The crazed Walmart attacker was held without bond in the Santa Clara County Jail. He was later evaluated by a mental health practitioner who revealed what everybody already knew: The man was a nutcase on drugs.

     In December 2016, Zaid dropped his insanity defense and pleaded guilty to ten counts of felony assault with a deadly weapon, felony vandalism, and reckless driving. Superior Court Judge Daniel Nishigaya, in January 2017, sentenced Haamid Zaid to eight years in prison.

     Haamid Zaid, at the time of his attack on Walmart and the innocent people there, was on parole. Serious crimes by criminals on parole has become a serious problem in California. The criminal justice system in that state has broken down. 

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