Trial to begin in alleged assault, kidnapping

A suspected white supremacist gang member from Costa Mesa is to appear in court Friday on charges of aggravated assault and kidnapping.

Jessie Raffensberger, 32, is accused of assaulting a man who was lured to a hotel, holding him against his will and hitting him with a semi-automatic pistol for the benefit of white supremacist and criminal street gangs, according to a 2010 news release from the Orange County district attorney's office.

Raffensberger's arrest in 2010 was part of the largest take-down of white supremacist prison and street gangs in Orange County.

The D.A.'s office alleges that Raffensberger assaulted a man who was responsible for impounding the car of Ruthie Marshall, the wife of "shot caller" white supremacist Wayne Marshall.

Raffensberger is charged with assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm, assault with a semi-automatic firearm, kidnapping for extortion and street terrorism, with sentence enhancements for being part of a criminal street gang on all the charges except the street terrorism, court records show.

The trial is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. in Department C-35 at the Central Justice Center in Santa Ana. Raffensberger faces a life sentence if convicted.

— Lauren Williams

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