Former University of California, Davis postdoctoral chemist David Snyder was headed to trial next month on 17 explosives, hazardous waste, and firearms charges stemming from a 2013 explosion in his campus apartment. At a hearing today that was supposed to deal with legal motions prior to an Oct. 20 trial start, Snyder pled no contest to all of the charges, according to an update from the Yolo County District Attorney’s office:
Defendant Pled No Contest to all charges in the complaint (17 counts). As he pled to all counts, the DA had no role in this plea. The judge made no promises as to the sentence. There will be a sentencing hearing on 10/17/14. The case was referred to the Probation Department for a presentence report.
I’ve reached out to the DA’s office to see if I’m reading that correctly–that this wasn’t a plea agreement, Snyder just decided to plead no contest, and will update when I hear back.
Update: I was correct, this is not a plea agreement. “I believe we made an offer but it was much higher,” said Jonathan Raven, Yolo County Chief Deputy District Attorney. “Now, it’s really up to the judge, with a recommendation from probation and arguments from both sides, to figure out the sentence.” Raven added that the judge said that he was inclined to give Snyder three years in jail, but the judge made no promise.