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San Benito
April 20, 2024

San Juan councilman accused of domestic violence, denies allegation

San Juan Bautista City Councilman Daniel J. DeVries was arrested Friday on suspicion of felony domestic violence, while the elected official denied the accusation.

The sheriff’s office responded to a disturbance in the 400 block of Fifth Street and contacted DeVries there, said Capt. Eric Taylor with the San Benito County Sheriff’s Office. Taylor said investigators suspected domestic violence and took DeVries, age 54, into custody.

The councilman was booked into the county jail at 9:53 p.m. Friday and released on $50,000 bail at 11:26 p.m. that night, according to jail records.

He was accused of inflicting corporal injury resulting in a traumatic condition, a felony. A conviction on that recommended charge could result in up to four years in prison. He is set to appear in court June 25.

DeVries and the suspected victim called the allegation exaggerated Tuesday and said no injuries were involved.

“This is all a huge misunderstanding,” DeVries said when asked about the arrest, adding how he adores the alleged victim. “This is ridiculous, and I look forward to an opportunity to clear this up.”

The alleged victim also spoke on the same phone call, claiming there were no injuries or crying involved and that the sheriff’s office was called to mediate an argument.

“They asked me repeatedly if I wanted a protective order, and I said no,” said the resident, whom San Benito Live is not naming.

Taylor said the arrest had nothing to do with DeVries being on the council. The sheriff’s spokesman said typically the agency won’t issue press releases on domestic violence issues – as there were no announcements made on the DeVries arrest.

“Clearly, we’re going to respond to a media inquiry on it,” he added.