Novato cyclist accused of attacking hiker, dog – Marin Independent Journal

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Sheriff’s deputies arrested a man on allegations he assaulted a hiker and kicked her dog in the Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve in Novato.

The hiker reported the confrontation at about 10 a.m. Thursday, said sheriff’s Lt. Steve de la O. The hiker said a cyclist started kicking her off-leash dog after it barked at him.

The hiker said she tried to defend her dog by pushing the cyclist away. The cyclist allegedly knocked the woman to the ground and choked her.

The cyclist left the area in a van, abandoning his bike and some belongings. Deputies found the suspect the following day in the Hamilton neighborhood.

Jeffrey Wayne Skelton, 63, was booked into the Marin County Jail on suspicion of assault, animal cruelty and violating his probation conditions. Skelton told deputies that the hiker attacked him, de la O said.

Skelton remained in custody Sunday in lieu of $50,000 bail. The sheriff’s department described him as a Novato-area itinerant.



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