Modesto is granted restraining order against ex-worker it says threatened to kill official

Garth Stapley/gstapley@modbee.com
·2 min read

A judge has issued a workplace violence restraining order against a former Modesto employee who the city’s public works director claims threatened to kill him May 24 as the director walked downtown during his lunch.

Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge John R. Mayne granted the city’s request for the order at a Tuesday court hearing, according to the city. Mayne issued the order for three years against former city electrician Allen Garan.

It replaces the temporary order Mayne issued against Garan on May 31. Garan must stay at least 100 yards from Sandhu and not have any contact with him.

Garan, 50, was not in court Tuesday to contest the order. He declined to comment for a previous story and provided this comment by text for this article: “Please don’t contact me anymore.”

Garan was among three city employees installing a streetlight pole in April 2018 that made contact with power lines. One of the employees, electrician assistant Tyrone Darnell Hairston, was electrocuted.

The Division of Occupational Safety and Health, better known as Cal/OSHA, investigated and fined Modesto $39,750. The city appealed, and an administrative law judge reduced the penalty to $23,550 in August 2021. Modesto paid the penalty the same month. The city also spent $18,500 in legal costs in its appeal.

The city also investigated the incident, and Hairston’s two co-workers and their supervisor left the city.

Sandhu wrote in a court declaration that he was walking downtown during his lunch break May 24 when Garan followed him in his pickup truck while yelling at and threatening him; drove the truck onto the sidewalk, blocking Sandhu; and later got of his pickup and blocked Sandhu from crossing the street.

Sandhu wrote Garan called him a coward and threatened to kill him.

Sandhu wrote that once he made it back to Tenth Street Place — the city-county administration center — he called 911. Police arrested Garan on suspicion of resisting arrest, making threatening statements and possession of an unlawful baton, which officers found in his pickup, according to Sandhu’s declaration.

There are no charges filed against Garan from the arrest, according to the Superior Court’s website.

The Modesto Police Department sought and was issued May 25 a gun violence emergency protective order against Garan and took possession of his 12-gauge shotgun May 26, according to court records provided by the city.

The emergency order was good until June 15. Superior Court Judge Marcus Mumford on June 14 issued a gun violence restraining order for three years against Garan. It bars him from possessing firearms, ammunition and magazines.