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Sacramento citizen Kayla protests Sean Thompson being in jail for pieing Kevin Johnson; photo via the author

“We’d like him to be let out on his own recognizance,” Sean Thompson’s lawyer Claire White said of her client, who is scheduled to be arraigned on felony assault charges on Tuesday for throwing a pie into the face of disgraced soon-to-be former Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson. “Mr. Thompson doesn’t pose a threat to the community.”

Despite Thompson’s slapstick crime and the ensuing face-mashing he reportedly received from the hands of soon-to-be former mayor Johnson, he is facing very serious charges. His bail is currently set at $100,000, which, as White said, “seems pretty excessive for some whipped cream to the face.” Here is video of White’s impromptu press conference outside the hearing room (apologies for the sideways video start; I am a video dingus).


Thompson entered the court room into a small iron cage following the arraignment of a woman accused of selling, in Judge Jaime Román’s words, “marijuana hashish.” Deadspin assumed we would be allowed to shoot video from the court room, but this apparently required a special permit to be sent in by fax (despite this being a public courtroom). I told the bailiff that I had indeed faxed in the permit (I hadn’t). He told me he’d try to let me shoot anyway (he did not, and instead stared at me during the arraignment). I took the following creepshot of Thompson, whose face was turning blue and yellow a few days out from the alleged beatdown he received. He was quiet and the whole process took about three minutes.

Photo via the author

After Thompson’s official arraignment got pushed to the other side of the weekend, the most meaningful development was the announcement that the district attorney asked for a protective order against Thompson. This would prevent him from going near soon-to-be former mayor Johnson, who is, as of this writing, in Washington D.C. White told me that he would still be allowed to attend city council meetings.


Outside of the Sacramento jail, a lone protestor named Kayla held a homemade sign. It read “FREE SEAN THOMPSON”. She was outside of the jail for at least half an hour after the proceedings had ended, and she told me that she had never met Sean and didn’t know who Kevin Johnson was before the pie throwing incident. Kayla said that she chose to advocate on Thompson’s behalf because she felt that the disgraced soon-to-be former mayor was someone who deserved protesting. “He shouldn’t be in charge of ... anything,” she told me. She tried to start a GoFundMe for Thompson’s exorbitant bail, but it violated the website’s terms of service, so it was shut down. Kayla also said that she took specific issue with the Sacramento media’s leveraging Thompson’s past associations with Occupy as a means to frame him.

“He shouldn’t be a mayor. Anyone who has sexual allegations like that against them, I’m not in support of that,” she said.

Staff writer, Deadspin

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