Five face ‘lynching’ accusation after Murrieta ‘riot’

Murrieta police arrested five people during the Fourth of July immigration standoff at the Murrieta Border Patrol Station.

Four of the five arrested remained jailed Saturday July 5 for allegedly trying to prevent Murrieta police from arresting a person.

According to Lt. Jon Flavin, the arrests were made at 3:40 p.m. Friday as the suspects and others waited for a trio of buses carrying detainees from Texas that never arrived in Murrieta.

Police initially arrested the five for “lynching,” a rarely used California Penal Code section defined as “taking by means of a riot of any person in the lawful custody of any police officer.”

Police said a protester jumped on the back of a Murrieta police officer who was trying to arrest someone linked to a reported assault.

Janet Mathieson, 22, of Claremont was questioned by police about the reported assault, and the officer was going to arrest her for obstructing the officer in the course of his investigation, a police report said Friday.

Police reported Pouyan Bokaei, 33, of Maryland, tried to free Mathieson from arrest. The officer let go of the woman as he tried to arrest Bokaei. Mathieson then reportedly jumped on the officer’s back, police said.

While Mathieson and Bokaei were being arrested, more police arrived and three others jumped into the fray to free the first two, police said. They were identified as Jacqueline Sanchez, 26, of Los Angeles; Jessica Rey, 25, of Menifee; and Salvador Chavez, 24, of Los Angeles.

All but Bokaei remained jailed today in lieu of $10,000 bail each, accused by police of violating the old California lynching statute. Bokaei’s legal status was uncertain.

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