By: Rob Harris
Attention casual readers: This entry may be destined for the “Best Of Golf Dispute Resolution”:
Free on $250,000 bail, Dr. James Simon has been charged with attempted manslaughter and assault with a firearm, after shooting William Osenton twice in the abdomen.
Here’s how a local news source described the incident:
“The shooting occurred July 17 on the 5100 block of Paradise Drive near Robin Drive. Police said both men were driving on Paradise Drive when a traffic conflict broke out.
“Police said Simon pulled into his driveway off Paradise Drive and into his garage, with Osenton trailing behind him. As the garage door closed, it struck Osenton’s Mercedes.
“Simon allegedly retrieved a .357-caliber revolver, fired one warning shot into the hillside across from his home, then shot Osenton two times in the abdomen.
“Police subsequently seized 50 guns, 200 boxes of ammunition and numerous magazines from Simon’s home. The items remain in police custody, as does Osenton’s car, which is being held pending examination by the defense.”
So, what does this unseemly example of road rage have to do with golf?
Apparently, Mr. Osenton is a golfer and is a member of the Meadow Club, described in the aforementioned news report as “Marin County’s most exclusive golf club.”
According to Dr. Simon’s defense attorney, Mr. Osenton is reputed to have quite a temper, which he believes he has displayed at the Meadow Club. Apparently seeking to bolster a claim that Dr. Simon acted in self-defense when he shot Mr. Osenton, defense counsel sought to require the club to produce records regarding Mr. Osenton:
“Seeking to discredit Osenton, Simon’s defense attorney subpoenaed Osenton’s records at the Meadow Club… The defense attorney, Charles Dresow, said he had information that Osenton, a 69-year-old Tiburon resident, has a history of aggressively confronting other members and damaging club property in ‘fits of rage.’”
The club objected, the judge reviewed the records privately, and determined they contained nothing relevant.
However, according to GHIN, Mr. Osenton, carrying a 10.7 handicap index, indeed may have been injured fairly seriously. He has entered no scores since July.