Lemoore, CA – A memorial procession in honor of a fallen officer was disrupted when an SUV driven by a city councilwoman careened through the police department’s parking lot and almost ran over the hero’s nine-year-old daughter.
Crystal Giles, the widow of Lemoore Police Corporal Jonathan Giles, told Blue Lives Matter that the incident occurred just seconds after she and her children finished posing for a picture with some officers behind police headquarters shortly after 2 p.m. on Wednesday.
The family was there to help kick off the Lemoore police chaplain’s cross-country motorcycle trip promoting mental health awareness.
The first leg of the trip – from the Lemoore Police Department to the Hanford Police Department - was dedicated to the memory of Cpl. Giles, who took his own life on Nov. 7, 2018.
They had just finished gathering for pictures when a speeding vehicle, driven by Lemoore City Councilwoman Holly Blair, tore into the parking lot and almost hit Cpl. Giles’ daughter, Riley.
“Blair came barreling through the driveway – like she came out of freakin’ nowhere – and there was an officer in his car. She went straight for him and he had to swerve to miss her,” Crystal Giles described the harrowing moment.
“I pushed my four-year-old ahead of me and reached back to grab Riley,” she recalled. “She only missed hitting Riley by inches.”
“My first thought when I turned around was ‘Oh my God, she’s gonna get hit,’” Crystal Giles told Blue Lives Matter.
She said that a King’s County sheriff’s deputy almost got run over and actually fell to ground as the city councilwoman pulled out of the police department’s parking lot.
“All the cops jumped in their cars and motorcycles and went after her,” Crystal Giles said. “It happened so fast that I was like ‘what is going on?’ I turned to my family and I was like ‘what in the world just happened?’”
The police widow told Blue Lives Matter she knew who the driver was at first glance – a notorious cop-hating member of city council who had been at war with the police department and city council for more than a year.
“When Holly blew through the parking lot, I saw exactly who it was,” Crystal Giles said. “She had her hair up in a messy bun and a grey shirt on. I knew exactly who it was.”
She said Blair ran several stop signs and stoplights in her bid to escape the myriad of law enforcement officers chasing her.
Blair finally stopped at a busy intersection and was pulled from the car by police and arrested.
“If she had come into the parking lot 10 or 15 seconds earlier, I think we all would have been hit,” Crystal Giles told Blue Lives Matter. “For sure, my children and I would have been run over. She had no remorse for anybody who was in her path.”
Crystal Giles said her daughter was traumatized by the incident and keeps asking her why Blair wanted to run her over.
She said Riley, acutely aware of her own police officer father’s recent death, also asked if Blair was there to hurt the police officers who were with them in the parking lot.
Blair was charged with five felonies, including assault with a deadly weapon, and two misdemeanors, The Sun reported.
She was released from custody on Thursday.
Shortly after the incident, Blair’s attorney gave a statement and said that the councilwoman may have been suffering a medical emergency when she barreled through the police parking lot with her son and dog riding with her.
But Crystal Giles told Blue Lives Matter that she doubted that explanation.
“No ambulance was called, nor was there an ER visit,” she said. “If it was a medical emergency, you’d think she would have gotten medical attention.”
The widow said that Blair is very open and public about the fact “she hates cops.”
“It’s all over her Facebook page, which is wide open. I’d heard stories from Jon and read the antics online, but when we went to a city council meeting where my husband was honored in a speech, I saw it. She sat there and rolled her eyes while they were talking about Jon,” Crystal Giles described, sounding disgusted.
“She needs to face the consequences of what she did on Wednesday,” she said.
Crystal Giles said that the councilwoman has been unpredictable and out of control in public on more than one occasion, and pointed to an incident that occurred at a local Starbucks.
Citizens upset with Blair’s behavior had initiated a recall movement and were collecting signatures to put the recall on the ballot in October of 2018 when Blair encountered them in the busy coffee shop, according to The Leader.
She approached a woman wearing a t-shirt advocating her recall and called the woman “racist as f--k.”
“I am not a racist f--k,” Tammy Alaniz replied, The Leader reported.
“I did not say you were a racist f--k, I said you were racist as f--k but if you would like to call yourself a f--k, by all means, go right ahead,” Blair told Alaniz loudly in the busy Starbucks.
Alaniz called the councilwoman’s behavior “vile, classless, and inappropriate,” and filed a complaint with the city council, according to The Leader.
Blair was already involved in a running battle with the other members of the city council and the police department when the Starbucks incident occurred.
The city filed a request for a temporary restraining order against her in King County Superior Court alleging she had taken improper actions, many of which concerned the police chief and one of his top commanders, according to The Leader.
The judge sent them to mediation in lieu of a restraining order, but left it open to reconsideration should the two sides not be able to come to an agreement.
Crystal Giles said she hoped that Blair’s rampage through the parking lot might be the last straw.
“I would hope she suffers the harshest consequences because she could have killed not only those of us at the police department, but she could have killed innocent civilians of Lemoore when she tore off out of there,” she said.
The procession honoring Cpl. Giles did not happen on June 5 because everybody participating in the event had to respond to the Blair incident.
Cpl. Giles, who served as a U.S. Marine with the 2/4 Magnificent Bastards from 2006 to 2010, was a popular police officer known throughout the Lemoore community as the “Dancing Cop,” due to his habit of breaking out in dance whilst directing traffic, according KMPH.
He joined the Lemoore police in 2013 and became a member of the King County SWAT Team in 2016, a lifelong goal, according to Crystal Giles.
Cpl. Giles is survived by his wife Crystal, his son Talon, and his daughters, Riley and Laila.