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Prominent architect says stock market loss drove him to assault deputy

A prominent architect who told authorities he was upset about losing money in the stock market plunge has been arrested for allegedly attacking an Alameda County sheriff’s deputy who stopped him in Pleasanton for erratic driving, a sheriff’s spokesman said.

The deputy stopped Paul Powers, 58, of Pleasanton on Foothill Boulevard near the Castlewood Country Club in Pleasanton at about 6:10 a.m. on Thursday because of the way Powers was driving, according to sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Ray Kelly.

Powers pulled over in his maroon SUV but when he got out of his car he assaulted the deputy and made threats against him, Kelly said.

Powers and the deputy got into a struggle but the deputy was able to wrestle Powers to the ground and arrest him, according to Kelly.

The deputy suffered a sprained hand in the struggle but is expected to make a full recovery, Kelly said.

Powers suffered minor injuries and was examined at a local hospital but then was booked at the Santa Rita Jail in Dublin on suspicion of felony making threats against an officer and misdemeanor battery on a police officer.

Powers remains in jail in lieu of $30,000 bail and is tentatively scheduled to be arraigned on Monday if prosecutors file charges against him.

Kelly said that after Powers was arrested he told the deputy he was upset because he had lost $250,000 in the recent stock market plunge and was having trouble at work.

Powers is president and chief executive of the KPA Group, a Pleasanton-based architectural firm, according to the firm’s website.

Powers is described on the website as “a highly-skilled architect with more than 30 years of experience including master planning, programming, cost estimating, analyzing existing buildings, space planning, project design, interior design, and construction administration.”

The website also said Powers is a nationally-recognized expert in aviation planning.

Powers has led the design, renovation and expansion of more than 35 airport passenger terminals, including projects in San Francisco, Santa Rosa and many other cities, according to the website.

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