The head of Fresno County’s sheriff’s deputy union received 12 weeks of anger management classes after being charged with a misdemeanor battery.
Eric Schmidt was not in attendance for his arraignment in front of Fresno County Judge Stephanie Negin on Wednesday, as he was not required to be. His attorney, Roger Wilson, appeared on his behalf.
Schmidt, 47, was charged in September for an incident that took place on Feb. 15, 2023. Because the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office had a conflict of interest, Tulare County handled the case.
If Schmidt Stays Out of Trouble, Case Will Be Dismissed
Wilson worked out a deal with the prosecutor and Negin under a diversion program. As long as Schmidt completes the program before the next hearing on March 1, and stays out of trouble, the case will be dismissed. Schmidt did not enter a formal plea.
Among the reasons Negin cited for the diversion, Wilson said, were Schmidt’s 26 years of law enforcement experience, no criminal record, and that the allegation came during a stressful time. Schmidt allegedly got into an altercation with another FCSO deputy at Selland Arena during the preparations for the funeral of slain Selma police officer Gonzalo Carrasco Jr.
Schmidt has worked with the sheriff’s office since 1997 and has been the president of the Fresno Deputy Sheriff’s Association since 2008. He may still face discipline within the department.