A cabdriver ordered by a jury to pay $24,595 to a mugger he caught by pinning him with his taxi will get a new day in court.
Superior Court Judge Carlos Bea granted Holden Charles Hollom a new trial Friday, saying the evidence contradicts the jury's finding that the cabdriver used excessive force."I think that justice is regaining its balance and I eagerly look forward to a new trial where the jury can come to a true verdict," said Hollom, 51.
Hollom chased the thief, Ocie McClure, several blocks and pinned him to a wall with his cab in May 1989 after McClure stole a tourist's purse. McClure, who later was convicted of robbery and sentenced to 10 years in prison, suffered a broken leg.
Bea agreed with Hollom's argument that he had no other way to stop McClure. "It is not now, nor was it ever the law, that before submitting to a lawful arrest a fleeing felon is entitled to a fair fist fight," the judge said.
McClure's lawyer, Ian Zimmerman, said he would appeal Bea's ruling.
Outrage from around the nation and overseas followed the jury's verdict. A San Francisco radio station collected more than $21,000 to help Hollom pay the award. The money went to a victim's assistance fund because Hollom's employer, Luxor Cab Co., agreed to pay the award.