ENCINITAS — A former Encinitas mayoral candidate was arrested Christmas Day on suspicion of felony domestic violence, law enforcement confirmed to The Coast News.
Jeff Charles Morris, who finished third with 6,969 votes in November’s mayoral race, was detained at approximately 6:45 p.m. on Dec. 25 at his residence in the 600 block of Poinsettia Park in Encinitas, according to Sheriff’s Department Lt. Chris Lawrence.
Morris potentially faces several felony charges, including inflicting corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant and two charges related to unlawful restraint of an individual using violence. Lawrence confirmed that Morris was booked into county jail on Christmas and released the following day on a $50,000 bond.
Details of the incident are not available at this time due to the sensitivity afforded to domestic violence cases, Lawrence said. Morris is scheduled for a Jan. 9 arraignment. The District Attorney’s office has not yet decided to file charges.
According to a subsequent Times of San Diego article, Morris and his attorney said the incident involved a dispute between his wife and a 23-year-old daughter when Morris tried to break up the argument.
“He didn’t hit anyone; he didn’t hurt anyone” Neuharth told Times of San Diego.
Morris is a longtime resident and has founded several online political advocacy groups, including Encinitas Watchdogs and North County Citizens Coalition, or NC3. Among other things, Morris has been a vocal critic of the city’s Safe Parking Lot program for the unhoused, which he believes has further exacerbated drug abuse, crime and homelessness in the community.
The Coast News attempted to contact Morris for comment but received no response in time for publication. This story will be updated with more information as it becomes available.
UPDATE: This story includes statements from Morris’ attorney, Paul Neuharth, to the Times of San Diego.
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