The Marin County businessman who tried throwing his wife off the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge after crashing his car into a guardrail was sentenced to five years supervised probation and ordered to attend counseling.
Prosecutors sought two years prison for Xavier Jarrell McClinton, 48, but Judge Jonathan Karesh imposed credit of 337 days served. He also ordered McClinton to attend 104 hours of domestic violence counseling, which can be attended in his home county, and obey all directions of his psychiatrist.
“That’s the real key,” said District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe. “It’s very important that this man stay on his medication.”
McClinton’s wife of eight years, who was left with a severe gash on her cheek from the struggle, asked Karesh not to send her husband to prison.
As part of the sentence, McClinton was also ordered not to harass his wife.
Although his office sought prison time, Wagstaffe called Karesh’s decision a “reasonable alternative.”
McClinton never claimed to be insane at the time of the Dec. 13 incident but apparently began acting strange two weeks prior, believing people were trying to break into his house to harm him and the couple’s children.
At McClinton’s preliminary hearing in March, a defense psychologist testified that he is bipolar and paranoid. He pleaded no contest to domestic violence rather than stand trial for attempted murder.
On the day in question, the couple reportedly argued as they drove east onto the bridge and, about 2:25 p.m., McClinton tried driving their vehicle off the side. He then allegedly pulled his wife from the vehicle and tried to go over the bridge’s side with her until passersby grabbed her legs and held her dangling as he fell. Rescue crews pulled him from the water and arrested him.
The accident snarled bridge traffic for hours.
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