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Released by: District Attorney
For Immediate Release

Lifer, Charles Thomas, Denied Parole for the Second Time

Santa Rosa, CA  –  May 26, 2017  –  California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation inmate Charles Thomas, 72 years old of Sonoma County, was denied parole for a second time Wednesday afternoon following a hearing held at San Quentin State Prison. Thomas was convicted by a Sonoma County jury on March 12, 1990 of attempted murder in the first degree; assault with a firearm upon a peace officer; two counts of possession of a firearm; cruelty to animals; first degree burglary; possession of a deadly weapon; and carrying a concealed firearm in a vehicle. Further, Thomas’ sentence was increased due to his having three prior convictions for “serious” felonies and a prior prison term. He was ultimately sentenced to serve 24 years, 4 months in prison, plus an additional term of life with the possibility of parole for the attempted murder.

District Attorney Jill Ravitch stated, “We believe the Parole Board made the correct decision to deny parole to this individual. He has done very little during his time in custody to show remorse for his actions, or a commitment to living crime-free in the community.”

The incident that gave rise to Thomas’ life sentence began on the afternoon of February 8, 1989 when Santa Rosa Police Officer Lance Badger conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle driven by Thomas. Thomas had his girlfriend and two male passengers in the vehicle. Thomas gave a false name which matched the name of an individual wanted out of Oregon. When Badger attempted to detain him, Thomas pulled away from Badger’s grasp. Thomas then pulled a gun from his rear waistband and fired two shots at Badger from point blank range. Both shots missed and Officer Badger returned fire, striking Thomas in the hand. Thomas continued to fire five more shots which struck Officer Badger’s patrol vehicle.

Thomas then ran into the backyard of a nearby residence where he shot a dog. He then broke into the residence and tried to alter his appearance by changing clothes and shaving his facial hair. While in the home he stole two firearms and ammunition.

The Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office representative, Deputy District Attorney Tania Partida, argued against his release citing Thomas’ lack of remorse for his actions, and lack of parole plans. The Parole Board denied Thomas parole until May 23, 2020, at which time he will be eligible for another hearing.


Contact Information

Joe Langenbahn
Media Coordinator
Office of the District Attorney
County of Sonoma
Contact us by Phone
600 Administration Drive
Room 212 J
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.466524, -122.726273