MODESTO — A Ceres police officer charged with misdemeanor assault stemming from an incident in April is set to return to court Nov. 7 for a pretrial hearing. Christopher Melton, a nine-year veteran of the department, appeared briefly in Stanislaus County Superior Court on Thursday morning for a scheduled arraignment hearing. Melton and his attorney, David Garcia, declined comment outside the courtroom, and Garcia could not be reached later for comment. Melton is on paid administrative leave while the criminal and internal affairs investigations proceed. Authorities have not released the name of the alleged victim or any details on the incident that led to Melton's arrest.