A San Ramon lawyer and Alameda County sheriff's deputy are due back in court -- again -- Tuesday in a misdemeanor case that's dragged on for nearly a year.
Lesley Regina, a family law attorney with a office on Crow Canyon Court, faces a single count of illegally receiving confidential communications. Deputy Ryan Silcocks faces three misdemeanors, computer access and fraud, unauthorized disclosure of confidential information and unauthorized furnishing of a local criminal record.
The incidents in question took place in January and February 2012. Court documents say Silcocks entered a closed Alameda County building on Jan. 15, Jan. 17 and again on Feb. 21 and illegally accessed DMV and criminal records databases.
On two occasions, on Jan. 23 and Feb. 21, Silcocks sent text messages to Regina containing confidential information, court documents say. The two were charged on June 11, 2012.
That began a year-long series of continuations, with the last request, when Silcocks hired a new attorney, coming April 16.
"They are stalling. That's my opinion," said Jeffrey Hubins, a Pleasanton attorney who represents a former resident who claims to be the victim in the case. "I'm guessing they're trying to negotiate with the D.A. and they don't like what they're getting, so they're stalling."
The two are now set for a trial on May 7.
That case and an ongoing federal case both center around Hubins' client, Brian Lancaster, who filed a lawsuit against Regina, Silcocks, Pleasanton Police Officer Tim Martens, the city of Pleasanton and Alameda County. The suit was filed last year and has slowly been grinding its way through the federal system.
Regina has asked to be removed from the lawsuit, but the judge, for now, has refused her request. Silcocks has yet to file a response.
One claim against Pleasanton was dismissed, in which it was alleged Lancaster's civil rights had been violated. Hubins said the judge ruled that illegally obtaining information was not a violation of Lancaster's civil rights.
"Everything else exists against them -- negligence, all the state law claims," Hubins said. He explained that if the judge decides that any of the claims is valid under federal law, the judge could also choose to look at claims that state laws were violated. If not, the case could end up at the state level, where a new judge would consider evidence.
"If you have federal causes of action and state causes of action, you can bring them in federal court," Hubins said. "The court has jurisdiction to rule on those if there cause of action."
Right now, the federal judge has to decide, if, as the lawsuit claims, Martens violated Lancaster's civil rights.
"What he told us to do is go, prove your case on Tim Martens, and if that sticks, I'll rule on state law," Hubins said. "What we have against Lesley (Regina) is all state law stuff."
Because Silcocks hadn't responded, a judgment was filed against him, but Hubins said he expects a response from Silcocks' new attorney, and thinks the judgment will be set aside.