A well-known technology executive from Kentfield has been arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon after he got off his bicycle and severely beat a motorist during a traffic dispute in Mill Valley, according to police.
Jeffrey Smock, 40, allegedly attacked the driver of a small pickup truck around 5 p.m. April 16 at the intersection of East Blithedale and Camino Alto avenues, according to a press release. Motorcycle officer Rob Dehner responded to the intersection after hearing shouting and car horns honking. He arrived to find people standing around a 55-year-old man lying in the street with blood on his face and on the ground around him.
Smock is well-known in the technology world as the founder and former chief executive officer of the Virginia-based Iron Data software company and previously ran LightNetworks, a telecommunications firm. In 2009 he was named the Ernst & Young "Entrepreneur of the Year." An article about him by the Atlanta Business Chronicle said he's an Atlanta native who enjoys bicycle racing and piloting planes.
Smock couldn't be reached for comment Friday.
Mill Valley police Lt. Ken Dunkel said there were a number of witnesses who said they feared for the beaten man's life.
"Some were concerned this person might be beaten to the point of death," Dunkel said. "Many of them were very shook up."
He said the beaten man received emergency medical treatment and was transported to the hospital for treatment of serious injuries. He has since been released. Police did not identify him.
Dunkel said Smock was booked into the Marin County Jail, but has since bailed out. Mill Valley police plan to ask the district attorney's office to file a felony charge against him.
"We have not sent the case up there yet as we're trying to make the report more complete," Dunkel said.
Mill Valley police did not immediately publicize the incident, causing critics to question whether they were trying to protect the high-profile suspect. Dunkel said they did not know anything about Smock until media requests began pouring in.
"To us this was just a serious, unfortunate assault," he said.
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