Sep 26, 2014

Clarification about the prayer lawsuit that was not clear from the Times-Standard article

I sent an email out to all City Council members  and the City manager. I would like to thank Council members Mike Newman and Marian Brady for getting back to me and the clarification provided.

Mike Newman:We did not settle on the invocation issue, we are free to continue our policy. What was settled was the matter about the Mayor involving City Personnel in a Prayer breakfast several years ago.

City Attorney clarification (via Councilmember Marian Brady):

The US Supreme Court in the Town of Greece case held that invocations at city council meetings were lawful.  That decision, however, does not prevent Ms. Beaton from appealing the decision issued by the trial court in Humboldt County in favor of the City.  By settling this issue now, it saves the City a substantial amount because we have all agreed that Ms. Beaton has to pay for the cost of the appeal and her attorneys’ fees even if her appeal is successful.

I addition, the cost of a trial would have been substantial and while the City felt it was on solid legal ground there is always a risk.  By settling it before trial, the City will not incur substantial attorneys’ fees and costs to defend and will not have the risk of paying Ms. Beaton monetary damages and her attorneys’ fees and costs at the conclusion of a trial.

As is true with any unfounded claim or lawsuit against the City, the City has to make decisions about the costs to defend and the risk the claim poses.  In this case, it was decided to pay Ms. Beaton a portion of her attorneys’ fees (no monetary damages were paid to her) and permit her to go forward with her appeal, without further cost to the City, to end the matter.

Is Peter Martin hurting for actual clients because he sure has a lot of free time to collect attorney fees on behalf of "causes"

Read a local headline with a government agency or non-profit and then lawsuit on behalf of (insert name here), most likely it will have attorney Peter Martin's name.

Now the self appointed media that loves to talk about conflict of interests, is just fine with Peter Martin's advocacy on behalf of his clients because "it is his job."

The prayer lawsuit filed by Carole Beaton is just one example of selective tolerance on the part of most liberals. If you do not believe as they do, they will sue. Trying to talk and find compromise in a calm manner is not profitable for the likes of Peter Martin.

Or for that matter, Richard Salzman or BayKeeper. Do these liberal activists/attorneys ever earn money that is not made by suing someone?

Freedom of speech and separation of religion to the sue happy liberals outweighs the rights of those who do believe, especially Christianity.

While people are being beheaded in the Middle East and fleeing from their homes, locally some people are threatened by prayer. Most of these people probably voted for Obama who has shown no leadership in the recent Mid-East crisis. After all, Christian lives are not worth the same as any other life.

In  liberal world that some of these sue happy liberals live in, as long as you believe and think exactly they way they want you to, you are a good person. The recent settlement of the prayer lawsuit by the City of Eureka proves only one thing. When you cannot win or convince people of your cause by reason, you bully and sue.

Let the attacks begin. Of course, they won't be on my blog. The truth is very inconvenient for the local blowhards.

Each time an atheist or non-believer sues, it is good in a way. They sure spend a lot of time trying to fight someone they do not believe exists. They are sure threatened by some words.

In addition to Humboldt's underground economy, we should add another economy, the sue happy economy.

As for city resources, if this would be something that the liberal community believed in, there would be no outcry.

Previous post:
Those who can do, do; those who cannot sue
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2013_05_01_archive.html

Sep 24, 2014

Another high profile jury trial continued; Benjamin Carter discovery leads to motion to continue

On October 20, three jury trials were scheduled. Timothy Littlefield, Benjamin Carter and Vincent Sanchez.

Only dates for the Vincent Sanchez jury trial, who is the suspect in the double murder on Harris Street, were confirmed today.

In the Carter case, DDA Luke Brownfield gave 29 CDS to defense attorney Michael Acosta in court today. Judge John Feeney granted Mr. Acosta's oral motion to continue trial. A disposition/reset hearing is scheduled for Nov 12 at 2 p.m.

DA's office files response to defense motion for a new trial for Bodhi Tree

Just some excerpts from the DA's response to the defense motion that sum up some key points.

"Defense Counsel states correctly that a new trial may be granted when the criteria of Penal Code §1181.8 have been met.  However, those criteria have not been met.  Defense Counsel refers to information which was discovered during jury deliberations and immediately provided to defense counsel.  This discovery consists entirely of training and performance issues with one of the People’s experts.   That expert was Ms. Deborah Stonebarger, a Department of Justice Criminalist.  Ms. Stonebarger testified as to blood stain analysis of the Defendant’s clothing.  She was not the People’s primary expert, and her testimony was limited in scope."

"The information regarding Ms. Stonebarger’s performance issues are merely cumulative and would not have impacted her ability to testify as to her particular assignment in this matter.

The People’s primary Department of Justice Criminalist expert was Mr. Dale Cloutier.  The
People also provided testimony by a third Department of Justice Criminalists,  Ms. Rebecca Gaxiolla."

The DA's response also states that "Ms. Stonebarger's casework limitations have no impact on her  assignment as to this case. Ms. Stonebarger did not provide any testimony as to firearms, nor as to blood alcohol analysis, which are the two disciplines that have been removed from her casework."

The response points out that Dale Cloutier was the People's primary Department of Justice expert and the information about Ms. Stonebarger's casework limitations would not likely result in a different verdict upon retrial.


After 7,000 pounds of marijuana, a 21 pound bust is just par for the course in Humboldt

On 09-23-2014, at approximately midnight, a Humboldt County Sheriff’s deputy stopped a 2014 black Lexus on Redwood Drive at Sprowel Creek Road, Garberville for a traffic violation.

When the deputy spoke with the driver identified as Anthony Coutain, 42 years old from Concord, he smelled the odor of marijuana emanating from the vehicle.  When the deputy asked Courtain about the marijuana smell in his vehicle Coutain told the deputy he had a small amount in a marijuana pipe, which he handed to the deputy.

The deputy had Coutain step from the vehicle and the deputy searched the inside of the vehicle. The deputy removed a large black duffel bag which contained 21 one pound bags of marijuana bud .  Coutain was arrested for possession of marijuana for sale, driving unlicensed and transportation of marijuana.

He was transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked on the charges. His bail was set at $25,000.00

$1,500 of water stolen from Shelter Cove residence

On 09-19-2014, at approximately 9:00 p.m., the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a citizen who wanted to report a water theft. The citizen told the dispatcher over $1,500.00 of water was stolen from a residence they owned.

A deputy contacted the homeowner by telephone, who told the deputy she and her husband owned a summer home in Shelter Cove in the 700 block of Spring Road, Shelter Cove. The homeowner told the deputy between July 29, 2014 and August 28, 2014 someone stole 146,802 gallons of water ( 20,000 cu feet)  from their residence.  The homeowner had received a call from the water company, the Shelter Cove Resort Improvement District, who informed them their water usage was abnormal. The homeowner who lives in Napa County had not been at the residence since June 2014.

The homeowner requested the water district check their residence for leaks or breaks in the water line, and to make sure the water meter was correct. The district checked the meter and residence and determined it was all in good working order.

The investigating deputy spoke with a neighbor who reported seeing a water trucks in the area. A spokesman with the water district reported they have had other water thefts from vacant summer homes, but not to this extent. They have also had thefts from hydrants.  The spokesman said the water stolen in this case was approximately enough water to sustain a family of four for two years.

No suspect(s) have been identified at this time, the investigation is ongoing. The value of the water stolen is $1,513.21.

The Sheriff’s Office and water district would like to remind the public that due to the drought, water thefts are increasing in frequency. Absentee homeowners should have neighbors watching their residence and take steps to prevent theft of water.

Sep 23, 2014

Help EPD locate 14 year old runaway

14 year old Annalise Copeland left home angry on 9-17 in Eureka. White female 5'6 blue eyes , brown hair wearing grey HSU sweatshirt and brown Uggs. Call EPD at 441-4060.

Picture on EPD facebook page.

Will he won't he go to trial for the third time?

Timothy Floyd Littlefield's victim will have to keep waiting to see if there will be yet another trial or if appeals court will uphold the second trial jury verdict.

Dates keep getting continued but the third jury trial is still set for October 20. After hearing that the second trial is being appealed, today Littlefield's attorney said the appellate court "appointed counsel" for Littlefield.

ADA Kelly Neel represented the People and Russ Clanton is Littlefield's attorney. Judge Marilyn Miles would preside over the third trial.

Instead of District Attorney Paul Gallegos, who prosecuted the last two trials, DDA Luke Brownfield will prosecute the case.

ADA Kelly Neel said that because Mr. Brownfield is currently in jury trial for another high profile case, the David Anderson human trafficking case, expected to end late October and because the appeal is pending, the People will file a motion to continue.

Sep 22, 2014

Tree motion for new trial missing crucial information not provided to the Court;

The defense strategy of character assassination and selective information continues in the Bodhi Tree case.

So the big to do about asking for a new trial comes down to the defense motion basically character assasinating prosecution expert witness Deborah Stonebarger. That strategy worked really well for them in the trial didn't it?

Compared to the defense experts, the prosecution experts were far more qualified and unshakeable. I was very impressed with Ms. Stonebarger. When we got the copy of the motion, another media colleague and I just shook our head and said the same word, "desperation."

I ran into Ms. Stonebarger's husband, Kevin, this morning, who is an investigator and currently at the Courthouse for another case and asked him about something I noticed in the motion. There is an employee response referred to in the evaluation documents attached in the motion but there is no such response. At first, he was a bit hesitant but then he answered my questions.

"There are 10 to 12 pages of documents missing, "  he said. "There are only two options: either Heidi is witholding that information from the Court or Toby Baxter did not give that information to Heidi and in that case he perjured himself."

Toby Baxter is Ms. Stonebarger's former supervisor. In defense exihibit 1, there is a QAIF test refered to that does not have a three page report Ms. Stonebarger wrote. There are 5 to 6 pages response to her evaluation referred to in Exihibit 2 that is not included. In February 2012, Ms. Stonebarger got an excellent evaluation but that was replaced by the evaluation that is attached in the defense motion.

Why?

Shoddy work was alleged by the defense and used a lot to attack the prosecution and law enforcement in the trial by the defense. Perhaps they need to work on dotting their i's and crossing their t's.