Maas Law News

Jury acquits man in knife assault case
By Jess Sullivan | Daily Republic | April 30, 2010 23:46

FAIRFIELD - A Suisun City man who allegedly stabbed his roommate four times had been looking at possibly spending 19 years in prison until a jury found him not guilty Thursday of assault and battery.

Phil J. Craig, 46, had been living in a halfway house in January 2008 when he brought some friends over one evening, according to trial testimony earlier in the week.

The roommate was unhappy about the visitors and soon Craig and the roommate, both drunk, were nose to nose exchanging angry words. Then they started shoving each other, ending up in the kitchen where Craig got a hold of a knife. Craig allegedly stabbed the roommate in the face and back.

Craig's defense attorney, Thomas Maas, described the stabbing as self-defense and characterized his client's intoxicated shouting that night as being 'like a little drunk yapping Chihuahua.'

Jurors agreed with Maas about the self-defense claim.

Reach Jess Sullivan at

427-6919 or jsullivan@

Article Launched: 09/25/2009 01:01:54 AM PDT

Attempted murder charges against a Vacaville man were dismissed Thursday in Solano County Superior Court.

Following a lengthy preliminary hearing, Superior Court Judge Donna Stashyn ruled Thursday morning that adequate evidence had not been presented to hold 37-year-old Shanan Lamont Danley for trial on charges of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and malicious mischief, indicating that the reported victim's testimony in the case was less than credible.

Danley was arrested by Vacaville police last July after allegedly using a car to ram another man into a garage door on Davis Street.

Represented by Fairfield attorney Thomas Maas, Danley maintained his innocence throughout the court process.

Article Launched: 09/24/2009

FAIRFIELD — A judge threw out the case against a Vacaville man facing attempted murder, felony assault and vandalism charges Thursday.

Shanan L. Danley ran down his wife's ex-husband in the driveway of Danley's Davis Street home on the night of July 2.

Danley was arrested the next morning and has been in jail for 2.5 months.

Danley, 38, was in his Toyota pickup truck parked in the home's driveway when the ex-husband walked in front of the truck. The truck accelerated, struck the ex-husband and plowed into a closed garage door, breaking it. The truck then plowed into a wall on the other side of the garage before stopping.

The ex-husband suffered a broken leg and a broken foot.

Danley claimed the ex-husband had confronted him outside the house and pulled a knife on him. He claimed he retreated to the truck and then accidentally drove forward instead of backward out of the driveway.

During a two-day probable cause hearing for Danley, the victim denied having a knife and said he went to the home only to check on the welfare of his 8-year old daughter.

The victim's testimony was unbelievable, said Danley's attorney, Thomas Maas.

Judge Donna Stashyn agreed with Maas, concluding the truck crashing into the victim and the garage was an accident.