A convicted felon accused of fleeing and tussling with sheriff’s deputies trying to arrest him on a sex crimes-related warrant in Temecula must stand trial for aggravated sexual assault and other felonies, a judge ruled Friday.
Virgil Warren Zwicker, 37, was arrested in July following the alleged confrontation with deputies in the area of Pechanga Parkway and Wolf Valley Road.
At the end of a preliminary hearing, Riverside County Superior Court Judge Mark Mandio ruled there was sufficient evidence to warrant a trial on the aggravated sexual assault count, as well as resisting arrest, being a felon in possession of a firearm, stalking and lewd acts on a child.
Mandio scheduled a post-preliminary hearing arraignment for Feb. 6 at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta. Zwicker is being held on $1.1 million bail at nearby Byrd Detention Center.
According to sheriff’s officials, shortly after 2 p.m. last July 3, deputies located Zwicker at a residence in the 31000 block of Bitterroot Court and attempted to serve an arrest warrant connected with the alleged sexual assault of a girl in September, about which no details were disclosed.
The convicted felon allegedly turned hostile, refusing to comply with commands that he exit the residence, then bolted out the back door, briefly evading deputies on foot, according to the sheriff’s department.
Additional deputies converged on the area, spotting Zwicker in Wolf Creek Park, where several lawmen tried to detain him, prompting the defendant to reach into his waistband, as if going for a handgun, investigators alleged.
A motorcycle deputy bumped into the defendant to stop his action, and other deputies then piled on him, forcibly taking him into custody, according to sheriff’s officials.
The motor deputy and Zwicker suffered minor injuries, but neither was hospitalized, according to an agency statement.
Back at the residence, a firearm and ammunition were seized, though no gun was found in the defendant’s pants, officials said.
According to court records, Zwicker has a prior conviction for spousal abuse.