Mental tests set for rec field fracas suspect

Chad Browning, a former Hollister police officer who is accused of driving his vehicle onto a Gilroy sports field while fleeing from police last year, will undergo a mental health assessment before his next hearing, according to authorities.

Browning, 42, of Fresno, was arrested in Gilroy Sept. 9, 2018, after an alleged crime spree that started with theft of a vehicle in Fresno, according to police. He allegedly drove the stolen vehicle to Gilroy, where he stole a cell phone from a resident before making his way to the athletic fields at Gilroy High School on West 10th Street.

Browning had used the cell phone to call Gilroy police, who caught up with him as he was driving the stolen Kia onto the high school sports fields, according to authorities. The Pop Warner youth football organization was hosting games on the field at the time. After a number of parents tried to stop Browning, he allegedly drove toward a Gilroy police officer. The officer fired a round from his service weapon at Browning’s vehicle. The car stopped, and officers were able to arrest Browning.

Browning is charged with four counts related to the suspected crime spree: assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer, vehicle theft, petty theft and possession of methamphetamine, according to court records.

Browning is scheduled for a mental health assessment on April 16, according to deputy district attorney Bathija. After that, he will appear at South County Courthouse in Morgan Hill May 2 for a “felony advanced resolution,” or a settlement negotiation with the DA’s office.

Browning has not entered a plea in response to the charges against him.

Browning was a Hollister Police officer from January 2002 to May 2007.

Former 49er to go to trial in July

Dana Stubblefield, a former San Francisco 49er defensive end, is scheduled to be tried before a jury July 8 on charges that he raped a developmentally disabled woman at his Morgan Hill home.

The trial will take place at the Hall of Justice in San Jose, according to Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Tim McInerny.

Stubblefield, 47, has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.

Morgan Hill police arrested Stubblefield at his home in May 2016, following a yearlong investigation into the rape accusation. The female victim told police Stubblefield raped her at his home April 9, 2015. The woman arrived at his home after Stubblefield contacted her for a job interview through a babysitting website, according to police.

After a brief job interview, the woman left, according to police. But Stubblefield called her back and offered to pay for her time. When she returned, he allegedly carried her to a room, raped her, forced her to perform oral sex and then gave her $80. The woman drove directly to the Morgan Hill police station from Stubblefield’s home to report the incident.

Prosecutors have said the woman is “intellectually disabled,” though Stubblefield’s attorneys have disputed this claim.

Stubblefield faces five felony charges in relation to the alleged rape in 2015: forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, rape and oral copulation of a person incapable of consent, and false imprisonment.

Stubblefield has claimed that he had consensual sex with the woman.

Murder suspect to appear May 21 for plea

Watsonville man Martin Mason Garcia is scheduled to appear at South County Courthouse May 21 for a plea hearing on the charge that he murdered Curtis Stapleton in Morgan Hill last year.

Garcia, 30, is accused of killing Stapleton, 27, of Sunnyvale, the night of July 3, 2018 outside their place of work on Concord Circle. After a lengthy investigation by Morgan Hill police, authorities arrested Garcia Oct. 2.

Garcia remains in custody at Santa Clara County Jail.

Garcia last appeared in court March 26. He has not yet entered a plea to the murder charge.