Feb 21, 2015

$1,311,804.77 just for Tooby-McKee case, $3,106,543.38 for outside representation; maybe County needs better legal advice?

Last July, I requested information from the County. The numbers below back Julie Williams concerns about Assistant County Counsel Carolyn Ruth.

This is from an email from the the County Public Information Officer Sean Quincey:

The total amount of expenses spent on outside litigation in the last four years, included settlements Total expenses for outside representation for the last four years is approximately $3,106,543.38. Of that amount, $1,311,804.77 was in relation to the Tooby-McKee case. Total expenses for settlements is $1,088,137.50.


Why is an Assistant County Counsel who is retiring, cost the County and taxpayers money in litigation being given a raise for doing her job?

At their Jan 20, 2015 meeting the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors voted  unanimously to direct CAO Hanes to enter into agreement with Frank DeMarco of the Hanson Bridgett Law Firm to be interim County Counsel. County Counsel Wendy Chaitin's retired and January 20, 2015 was her last meeting.
From the February 24 meeting, agenda item #5 is:
Temporary Increase in Compensation for Assistant County Counsel (4/5ths Vote Required) That the Board of Supervisors, by not less than a four-fifths vote and pursuant to Section 7 of the Humboldt County Salary Resolution, approves a temporary increase in compensation of 22 salary ranges for Assistant County Counsel Carolyn Ruth, effective February 24, 2015 and continuing until appointment of a new County Counsel or June 5, 2015, whichever occurs first.
This brilliant idea is a suggestion by Frank J. DeMarco, Consultant Interim County Counsel.
Listed below are the recommendations in a letter to the Supervisors which is an attachment on the agenda.
RECOMMENDATIONS:
That the Board of Supervisors, by not less than a four-fifths vote and pursuant to Section 7 of the Humboldt County Salary Resolution, approves a temporary increase in compensation of 22 salary ranges for Assistant County Counsel Carolyn Ruth, effective February 24, 2015 and continuing until appointment of a new County Counsel or June 5,2015, whichever occurs first.
SOURCE OF FUNDING: General Fund
DISCUSSION:
On January 23, 2015, County Counsel Wendy Chaitin retired from county service. As a result of that
retirement, the Board of Supervisors retained the services of experienced outside counsel to provide
specified contractual advice and guidance. In order to minimize expenditures, retained counsel does
not provide daily onsite management of the office. Daily onsite management is being performed by
Assistant County Counsel, Carolyn Ruth, with the guidance and advice of retained outside counsel. In the absence of a full time county counsel, the Assistant is performing additional duties such as preparing the 2015/16 annual budget and in communication with retained counsel is performing a full range of law office management duties.

So we hired an outside consultant to replace Ms. Chaitin and now we have to pay extra to the assistant County Counsel because she has to assume some extra work that the consultant cannot do?

Supposedly, Ms. Ruth is supposed to retire this June. There is concern by some members of the community that this is a move to get Ms. Ruth the permanent position of County Counsel.

Julie Williams, had this to say about the proposed raise: "In my personal opinion, as a concerned citizen, "It is highly inappropriate to give Ms. Ruth a raise at this time. Merely by looking at her record and the excessive costs to taxpayers for her advice on land use decisions and land use litigation. Ms. Williams cited the Tooby ranch litigation as an example.

In her professional opinion, representing the North Coast Home Builders, Ms Williams said, " We would have deep concerns about Ms. Ruth and her unprofessional behavior and attitude to property owners across  the spectrum,; not just towards local developers who gets permits. It is due to her cohorts which include the former planning director and some former Supervisors that the GPU has been too time consuming and costly". Ms. Williams used an example the time Ms. Ruth cited to the Supervisors a state statute as a basis for the County to adopt an emergency tpz ordinance. "Trouble is, in her staff report to the BOS, Ms. Ruth changed a comma to a period, omitted several lines and told the Board to move forward on the tpz ordinance. We have deep concern that even though Tuesday's agenda item says the increase would be temporary in nature, sometimes things happen and it is our fear that this could be a potential move to keep Ms. Ruth on staff permanently which we would oppose. She has turned in her resignation."




HSU Religious Studies Department honors Fr Eric Freed with a Commemoration at the Plaza Grill celebrating the positive impact Fr. Eric still has in our lives

Last New Year's Day began with a tragedy and a personal loss in my life that words cannot express but out of that devastating loss, Fr. Eric is bringing people together now just as he did through his priesthood, teaching and friendship. I got to meet several people that have become friends and/or family. Fr. Eric's family, his colleagues at HSU. Sara Hart mentioned this idea to me when we gathered this New year's Eve to remember Fr. Eric at St. Bernard's Church.

Sara explained how this idea came about. I am sharing part of her email and a press release and hope to see many of you next Sunday.

Sara's email:

"Our intent here is to cultivate community. We spent a lot of last spring semester working on memorial programs to honor Fr Eric, and, while the circumstances were inconceivably horrible and the events emotionally difficult, one thing that was true about last spring is that we came together, as a community, more often than we had in a long time.

So, thinking about this, we decided as a department that if we're to take seriously the legacy of a beloved colleague and friend, we need to take that sense of community past the need to grieve and into our regular lives. We'd like to make a habit of it, and we are calling this event an "Eric Freed Commemoration," to honor the man whose life and memory has actually motivated us to host, but we're also thinking of it as an "HSU Alumni and Friends Social," to really underline the celebratory nature of the event."


Press Release:

On Sunday, March 1, from 2:00-5:00 p.m., Humboldt State University’s Religious Studies Department will host a celebrative commemoration of the life and legacy of Father Eric Freed at the Plaza Grill, at 780 7th Street in Arcata.

It has been a year since the tragic death of Father Eric Freed, and the HSU Religious Studies department has worked during this time to render this unfathomable loss into something positive for our students and community. Eric left us with a strong awareness of how important community is to our individual and collective well-being. It is in this spirit that we cordially invite alumni, friends, and the greater community to an afternoon in celebration of Eric's life and the ways that we can, and do, work together to foster peace and justice.

Father Freed taught courses for the HSU Religious Studies department for seven years, during which time he influenced countless students as they practiced engaged scholarship, learned deeply of the religious traditions of the world, and applied what they learned to projects, large and small, for human betterment. His positive impact continues to reverberate through our classrooms, congregations, community centers, and through myriad individual hearts and minds.

Students, alumni, friends of Eric, and the community at large are invited to celebrate his legacy of engaged scholarship, social justice, and human kindness through sharing reflections, food, and fellowship. Appetizers will be served alongside a no-host bar.

For more information please contact Sara Hart (sjh68@humboldt.edu) or call the Religious Studies Department: 707- 826- 4126.

Feb 20, 2015

Decision expected in March from Federal Judge on constitutionality of cannabis' Schedule 1 classification

w.thedailychronic.net/2015/40822/final-arguments-heard-in-marijuana-schedule-i-hearing-decision-expected-in-march/

Excerpts from article:

SACRAMENTO, CA — A federal judge hearing the case of nine men accused of illegally growing marijuana in California said Wednesday she was taking very seriously arguments by their attorneys that the federal government has improperly classified the drug as among the most dangerous, and should throw the charges out.


Judge Kimberly J. Mueller said she would rule within 30 days on the request.

http://www.theweedblog.com/federal-judge-hears-closing-arguments-in-marijuana-rescheduling-case/

Excerpts from opinion:

Yesterday in Sacramento a federal judge heard closing arguments in a motion challenging the constitutionality of cannabis’ Schedule I classification.

At issue is whether a rational basis exists for the government’s contention that cannabis is properly designated as a schedule I substance — defined as possessing a “high potential for abuse,” “no currently accepted medical use in treatment,” and “a lack of accepted safety … under medical supervision.” A federal court has not heard evidence on the matter since the early 1970s.

Lawyers for the federal government argue that it is rational for the government to maintain the plant’s prohibitive status as long as there remains any dispute among experts in regard to its safety and efficacy. Defense counsel — attorneys Zenia Gilg and Heather Burke of the NORML Legal Committee — contend that the federal law prohibiting Justice Department officials from interfering with the facilitation of the regulated distribution of cannabis in over 20 US states can not be reconciled with the government’s continued insistence that the plant is deserving of its Schedule I status under federal law.

Another crash at the fatal 7 th and I intersection in Eureka

That corner is cursed. According to PIO Brittany Powell, no fatalities and no injuries reported as of yet. I' m here at the scene of the accident. Officer Crinch confirmed no injuries or fatalities. They are still investigating.

Suspicious explosive container contained pieces of fishing pole

On 02-20-2015 at about 1040 hours the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office received a telephone call from a concerned citizen about a suspicious possible explosive container lying on the street at the corner of Myrtle Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue, Eureka. When deputies arrived on scene they saw a suspicious cylinder type container lying on the roadway next to the curb.

Sheriff Deputies with assistance from the California Highway Patrol blocked off the area around the suspicious item for public safety reasons. The Sheriff’s Office Deputies, specially trained in explosive, ordnance, devices (EOD) were called out to the scene to access the situation.

After EOD deputies closely examined the suspicious looking container it was determined it was not an explosive device. The container was similar in size, color and dimension of a real pipe bomb. The item turned out to be pieces of a fishing pole in the container.

Feb 19, 2015

"I'm going to fuck you guys up", will a different jury in the Stiglich case by a self-defense claim?

Judson Stiglich was held to answer on all charges after the preliminary hearing in his case where he is charged with voluntary manslaughter concluded today. DDA Stacey Eads did a great job in building a case proving each count Judson Stiglich is charged with in this case, especially since Jennifer Robinson's testimony and certain statements were favorable to Stiglich.

Mr. Russ Clanton, who has been hired by Stiglich's family did not question Ryan Robinson's mother. Margaret Robinson pretty much corroborated what her daughter Jennifer Robinson had testified about arriving at the house and Judson Stiglich telling Jennifer Robinson that she had to tell her mother the truth that he had shot Ryan Robinson.

Margaret Robinson's testimony was brief compared to the hours of emotional testimony over two days by Jennifer Robinson with pauses and recesses. When confronted with reports and her own statements on cross, Jennifer Robinson added a few details she had left out the first day when she testified.

In the Matthew Brown case that recently went to trial, the jury did not vote for voluntary manslaughter or a justified killing. Compared to a preliminary hearing, more evidence is provided at a jury trial. Stiglich cried when Jennifer Robinson testified at the preliminary hearing. Matthew Brown teared up, only on the stand. Stiglich could be seen as a more sympathetic defendant.

Jennifer Robinson is a witness caught in a tragedy for both families. She loved her brother and it is clear that she still cares deeply for Stiglich. We may never know the back story and some facts but it was clear to see Jennifer Robinson is caught between two conflicting loyalties. Her family does not like Stiglich and they are in the courtroom and with her all the time. She often said, "I don't remember" and "I don't recall." She seems to remember some events clearly but when backed into a corner by her own words, she often says, "I don't recall" or "I don't remember."

When Jennifer Robinson was questioned by Mr. Russ Clanton, Stiglich's attorney, the knock on the door was clarified as "pounding on the door."  Jennifer Robinson said that caused her anxiety. She told Mr. Clanton that Ryan Robinson told Stiglich and her, "I'm going to fuck you guys up." She also said Ryan Robinson did say that he was going to get a gun, his AK-47 and that she was scared. There was a vague reference that both Stiglich and she were scared "because of what had happened to me".

Jennifer Robinson did not witness the actual shooting but she is the only one, besides Stiglich and her brother who was present and can tell what happened before the shooting and after the shooting.

Jennifer Robinson has painted Stiglich in a very sympathetic light so far. If a jury believes her and if Stiglich testifies, will Stiglich's jury trial have a different outcome than the Matthew Brown case?


"Some people think they are not going to prison, how wrong they are. We elected Maggie Fleming"

"Many people want to blame Prop 47 for an increase in crime, too early to do that," said Chief Andy Mills to attendees of the Humboldt Republican Women luncheon at the Elks today. "We can't completely do that. These crimes don't make the front page. Increase in crimes started two months before but Prop 47 has aggravated the situation. Some think they are not going to prison, how wrong they are. We elected Maggie Fleming."

"I like Paul as a person but the change is substantial." Chief Mills gave an example of a man who had been arrested twice in a row for robbery and "Maggie said no deal. He got 6 years in prison."

Chief Mills spoke in his usual off the cuff manner. He spoke about the recent promotions, homelessness, gave facts about the shopping cart and bicycle ordinance and his critics. He also gave statistics on crime.

Chief Mills explained the efforts of the MIST team that is a multi-agency effort to reduce homelessness.

Chief Mills gave an example of the lady who would sit out on a bench on 4th and E in Eureka and would refuse help. She would be out there in rain and freezing cold. MIST helped her get into housing. Although, she is back during the day, she is no longer homeless.

He said the homeless population can be broken into the following categories: "trimmigrants", "seriously mentally ill" population, those who engage in "substance abuse and drugs" and the "criminal predators". The latter he said are not those who steal shopping carts but someone like the man they arrrested in the Marsh that "was involved in 3 shootings" and "had four guns in his tent."

"Last year, we had 300 calls with weapons involved," said Chief Mills. "Last year, we took 125 guns off people." In his entire career in law enforcement, even when he was in San Diego,  he has not seen so many guns. Chief Mills said 'property crime is up". Citing a private group that gave funds to carpet the office, Chief Mills said he is not a proponent of public funds being used for something like that but the carpets now make a safe environment for his employees citing "falls" as a safety issue. This is one way, he said the community can help, others are to volunteer for the EPD with skills. The Police Chief Advisory Board that he suggested to the Eureka City Council is another way.

Before he got into the nitty gritty of crime and statistics, Chief Mills opened his speech by mentioning a plaque given to him by a friend. It had the word "Peace and Prosperity." He asked the audience if anyone could tell him where that came from and then told us that it was from Jeremiah 29:7 "Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper."

"if other people prosper, it pulls all of us up," said Chief Mills. "It is not a conservative or liberal principle, it is common sense. Eureka is headed in the right direction. It may take a while but we will get there."



Chief Andy Mills featured speaker at Humboldt Republican Women Luncheon



Eureka Mayor Frank Jager, Eureka City Councilmember Marian Brady and Fifth District Supervisor Rex Bohn  were some of the elected officials that attended the HRW luncheon. The room was packed with double the attendance because Chief Andy Mills was speaking. Captain Brian Stephens was also in attendance. A prayer and pledge of allegiance was said before Chief Mills spoke.

KAEF Lindsay Housaman was an invited guest of HRW President Annette De Modena. When she introduced Chief Mills, Ms. De Modena said, "We are so blessed to have him as our police chief here in Eureka." She said when she saw his resume, she wondered why he came to Eureka.

In response to her compliment, Chief Mills started his speech with humor, "It's amazing how amazing you sound when you write your own stuff," He said Eureka is the "secret of California and that people don't know how beautiful this area is and that he and his wife Cathy feel blessed to be here." 

Feb 18, 2015

"A tub and a duffel bag full of 11 pounds of marijuana bud packaged in one pound turkey bags"

A digital scale, a gun, a pistol, surveilance system, a tupperware container of "crystal meth" and "a tub and duffel bag full of 11 pounds of marijuana bud packaged in one pound turkey bags" were found when law enforcement searched Judson Stiglich's house, after they answered a "shots fired" call and discovered the dead body of Ryan Robinson in Stiglich's driveway.

The gun that was used in the shooting by Stiglich and tossed on Cutten school grounds was determined to be stolen from Fortuna and the owner was contacted by law enforcement. An empty shell casing matching that gun was found in Stiglich's garage.

Deputy Coroner Trevor Enright told HCSO Investigator Greg Musson that  Ryan Robinson had suffered a gun-shot wound to the chest and that his "death was caused by a single gun-shot wound to the chest." A toxicology report showed that Ryan Robinson had a very high level of alcohol in his blood. The legal limit is .08 and Ryan Robinson's blood alcohol level was .20.

Mr. Russ Clanton who is Stiglich's attorney cross-examined Investigator Musson after he had just given detailed answers to DDA Stacey Eads about when law enforcement was notified, the chain of events leading to the discovery of Robinson's body and securing of the crime scene as well as collection of evidence.

Jennifer Robinson, victim's sister and Stiglich's girlfriend at the time of the incident, continued her emotional testimony today and was followed by Ryan Robinson's mother, Margaret Robinson testifying. Investigator Musson was the last witness to testify before both attorneys presented their closing arguments and Judge John Feeney held Stiglich to answer on all charges.

Mr. Clanton was able to get Investigator Musson to acknowledge that in his report, Investigator Musson did not report that either Jennifer or Margaret Robinson mentioned or described a shoving match between Stiglich and Ryan Robinson. Mr. Clanton was also able to raise questions about Ryan Robinson's blood alcohol level and that he could have had a weapon concealed in "the Woodland type" camo he was wearing the night he went over to Stiglich's house.

In Jennifer Robinson's testimony, she never mentioned a folding knife or a 9 mm bullet found in Ryan Robinson's car. Mr. Clanton brought up Ryan Robinson's facebook page where he was pictured with weapons including an assault rifle. This raised some credibility issues because about Jennifer Robinson testifying she had no knowledge of her brother having any weapons, especially the night he was shot.

Mr. Clanton made a case for self-defense in his closing argument and while Judge Feeney acknowledged that could be a possible defense, his ruling was based on information provided for the preliminary hearing. Both DDA Eads and Mr. Clanton made strong closing arguments.


With a gag order and now chamber conferences, getting information on the Bullock case is like pulling teeth; the public's right to know is taking a hit

I get why gag orders are requested but not every high profile case should have one. We have had delay after delay in a case that deeply affects many people in Humboldt County and people regionally and internationally.

Now defense wants conferences in chamber with minimum information stated in court. Gary Lee Bullock is entitled to a fair trial but what about Fr. Eric? What about his family? What about the rest of us, his other family and friends?

There are many overlaps in cases and court dates with high profile cases right now and court coverage is rare in local media if other news does not take precedent. The Warren case does not have conferences in chamber, the Bodhi Tree case did not have conferences in chamber, the Limmie Curry case did not have conferences in chamber.

Evidence presented at the preliminary hearing points towards only one suspect. Unlike other homicides, who "allegedly" murdered Fr. Eric from evidence presented so far does not seem to be in question. Only Bullock "allegedly " entered the rectory and only Bullock "allegedly" exited and "allegedly" fled the crime scene. Only Bullock was captured on the surveilance cameras.

Looks like Bullock gets to pull every legal trick in the book to keep delaying a trial and while his rights are being preserved, damn the victims. There is not just one victim in this case. As a priest, a professor, a brother, a son, a friend, there are many victims. The public barely gets any information because of the gag order on this case, now with the private chamber conferences, the public's right to know is further eroded.

It is bad enough that Bullock "allegedly" brutally killed someone loved by many people, "allegedly" desecrated a sacred place and "allegedly"  tried to destroy evidence of his crime but now his rights seem to triumph the rights of everyone else.

This case is personal. Isn't every case where someone takes another life personal?

Bullock trial date of March 2 vacated; future trial date and experts to be determined

The next court date for Gary Lee Bullock is March 4 at 2 p.m for trial setting.

The case is being prosecuted by Mr. Andrew Isaac and DDA Stacey Eads. Bullock is being represented by Mr. Kaleb Cockrum of Conflict Counsel.

Today, Judge John Feeney said that "there were few things to address." Judge Feeney said that "the Court had received a few records that had been subpoenaed. While he did not mention which records in court today; court records show that medical records for Bullock had been requested by the District Attorney's office. These include records from St. Joseph's Hospital, Mad River Hospital, Jerod Phelps and Singing Tree.

The records were released to Mr. Isaac to copy and to make copies for defense. Judge Feeney said that he had received some names of experts from People and was waiting on Mr. Cockrum to submit names and resumes. Today, Mr. Cockrum was able to give one name and said he would have others in two weeks.

Once the defense submits their choice of experts, Judge Feeney said "he would appoint two or three experts in this matter."

Mr. Isaac asked Judge Feeney, "Is it the Court's thought that the Court will indicate which experts are selected or will there be open discussion by Counsel? Mr. Isaac added that he did not think it was the place of the attorneys place to argue with the Judge whose names would be selected.

Judge Feeney indicated that there may be another conference in chambers for that discussion and he would not commit whether he will have the names of experts determined by the March 4 date.

On February 11, Bullock entered a plea of not guilty by insanity which was added to his existing not guilty plea.

On February 13,  a private meeting finally took in Judge John Feeney's chambers where he met with both prosecution and defense in the Gary Lee Bullock murder case. Bullock is charged with the murder and torture of Fr. Eric Freed.

This meeting was to discuss the appointment of a psychaitrist or psychologist since Gary Lee Bullock entered a not guilty by insanity plea at his last court hearing on February 11.

Previous post:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/02/bullock-personally-reads-not-guilty.html

Fieldbrook double homicide continued until March 9

Defense filed a brief continuance due to "outstanding discovery".  Jason Arreaga, the suspect in the double murders committed in Fieldbrook entered a time waiver today.

Today was supposed to be a Trial Readiness Conference for the jury trial scheduled for February 23.

New dates are Trial Readiness on March 2 at 2 p.m. and Trial Assignment on March 6 at 8:30 a.m with a new jury trial date on March 9. Arreaga is represented by Ms. Heidi Holmquist from the Public Defender's office and DDA Roger Rees was in court today representing the People. DDA Zach Curtis is the prosecutor for the case.

Judson Stiglich held to answer on all charges including voluntary manslaughter of Ryan Robinson

Detailed testimony of Day 2 of preliminary hearing later. Ryan Robinson's mother and HCSO Detective Greg Musson testified today.

Stiglich was held to answer on all the following charges:  voluntary manslaughter, unlawful firearm activity, marijuana possession, allowing a place for preparing or storing a controlled substance, possession of marijuana for sale and receiving stolen property. 

Feb 17, 2015

Eureka kick off for 40 days of life rally attracts one counter protest for a few minutes





About 40 people from the local Christian community showed up to pray, sing and gather in solidarity in front of Planned Parenthood this evening. There was representation from different Christian denominations.

A lone counter protestor, Jessica stood across the street, holding a sign: "I support Six Rivers Planned Parenthood because SRRP supports our community." She said she is a Christian and a former member of Spare Change. She said that she went to the international site, not the Eureka site for the organization and "if they were just praying against abortion, I wouldn't be here." Her beef with 40 days of life is because they want abortion centers closed. Jessica didn't stay long. She left after 10 minutes.

If you go to the 40 days of life.com site, they pray outside centers and for the people who work there. There is no organized effort to close centers.


Previous post:

Feb 15, 2015


Eureka rally to kick off 40 days of life is part of the largest international pro-life coordinated effort

 “We truly pray that this 40 Days for Life campaign will mark the beginning of the end of abortion in Humboldt County and beyond,” said Stephanie Goodwin, who coordinates the local effort.

“We will start our campaign with a rally at the corner of Walford Avenue and Wilson Street on Tuesday, February 17, 2015 at 6:30 p.m.”

Eureka is one of 559 cities in 27 nations across the globe coming together to make 40 Days for Life the largest internationally coordinated pro-life mobilization in history.

Through prayer and fasting, community outreach, and peaceful prayer vigil, God has used 40 Days for Life to spare 9,699 babies
from abortion, bring 107 abortion workers to Christ, and close 59 abortion centers. Join 40 Days for Life in Eureka from February 18 – March 29 to pray for the end of abortion. “We start this effort by drawing
members of the community together to share the vision of 40 Days for Life and to pray for God’s blessings on this effort. It is time to focus attention on the harm abortion has done to our city,” said
Allen Rode, previous Coordinator.

“This will mark the start of 40 days of prayer and fasting, with special attention to prayer in the public right-of-way near Planned Parenthood: 3225 Timber Fall Court, Suite B, in Eureka, California, as well
as various types of community outreach. We believe that every life is precious and look forward to seeing what kind of transformation God will bring about in our city,” said Lucinda Jackson, Public
Relations Coordinator.

All prayer vigil participants are asked to sign a statement of peace, pledging to conduct themselves in a Christ-like manner at all times.

40 Days for Life is a peaceful, intensive campaign that focuses on 40 days of prayer and fasting, 40 days of peaceful vigil at abortion facilities, and 40 days of grassroots educational outreach. The 40-day time
frame is drawn from examples throughout Biblical history where God brought about world-changing transformation in 40-day periods.

For information about 40 Days for Life in Eureka, California, visit: www.40daysforlife.com/eureka.

Bullock, Warren, Arreaga, Carter, Ferrer and that is just the homicide docket

In the next few months, several high profile homicide cases set for trial. Carter and Ferrer are currently set for the same day. Forgot Limmie Curry in the title.

This does not even include other high profile cases like former HCSO deputy Jason Daniel's trial or other serious cases that are not homicides.

Humboldt Women to give $500 grant to women business owners and entrepreneurs

 Humboldt Women is awarding women business owners and female entrepreneurs a $500 grant on the first of every month. The grant money will help local businesses build, maintain or grow their success. Sponsorships and donations help fund the grant, as does the $20 membership fee.

Humboldt Women is now accepting applications for March’s grant. Each applicant must fill out a questionnaire and submit a one-time $20 membership fee which will maintain their eligibility every month. The deadline to submit required materials for March's grant is February 25th. For more information visit HumboldtWomen.org or contact the Director, Christina DeGiovanni, at Info@HumboldtWomen.org .

Matthew Brown sentencing on March 11

Matthew Brown will be sentenced on March 11 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 1.

Previous post regarding possible penalties and sentencing:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/02/penalties-and-potential-years-in-prison.html

"All I could do is look at my brother's eyes while he was falling"

Judge: John Feeney
Prosecution: DDA Stacey Eads
Defense: Russ Clanton
Courtroom: One
Day 1 preliminary hearing for Judson Stiglich

Jennifer Robinson, sister of the victim Ryan Robinson and Stiglich's girlfriend at that time, testified this morning. Her testimony had to be interrupted for her to take a break. She was crying and very emotional. Her testimony and questioning by Ms. Eads took all morning because she would pause and was sobbing at one point. Half-way through her testimony, Ms. Eads asked her, "This is difficult for you" and she said, "yes." Often, she had to be asked to repeat what she said or speak up and even then, some of her testimony was muffled due to her crying as she recalled the events of the night when her 22 year old brother was shot.

Stiglich was crying during parts of her testimony. So did the Robinson and Stiglich family members in the courtroom.  Towards the beginning of her testimony, when Ms Eads asked Jennifer Robinson what she was doing at Stiglich's house, Robinson family members sitting behind me, whispered "drugs."

Jennifer Robinson is the only eye-witness to the shooting of her brother. She testified that on the evening of January 7, her brother was angry and that he came to Stiglich's house and threatened to hurt them. She testified that both, she and Stiglich, had done meth that evening. She testified that she told her mom that she shot her brother because she did not want them "to hate Jud" and that they would not believe it was an accident.

Jennifer Robinson testified that she took Stiglich's gun away from him and threw it somewhere on the Cutten school grounds because Stiglich was going to shoot himself.  She said she begged him to give her the gun and told him "I can't lose my Bubby and my best friend all in one night."

Tomorrow morning, Mr. Clanton will cross-examine Jennifer Robinson and two other witnesses are expected to testify.

Jennifer Robinson is 32 years old and she has lived "in Eureka on and off" and also in SoHum and Rio Dell. While testifying, she would not look at Stiglich but there were three moments during her testimony that she briefly glanced at him. She said Stiglich was her boyfriend and the relationship began 5 months prior to the night her brother was shot and that she had known Stiglich since she was 15 years old.  Several times during her testimony, she referred to Stiglich as "my best friend." Asked to elaborate on her relationship, Jennifer Robinson said, "He was always my best friend. I was always there for him."

She could often not recall certain details saying, "I don't remember," or "I don't know". The night of January 7, 2015, while she said Stiglich and she smoked meth, she could not recall how much but she did say that they did not consume any other intoxicating substances. She was supposed to spend the night at Stiglich's and they were in the bedroom when, "There was a loud knock on the door, then one of us opened the door. It was my brother. He was angry."

Jennifer Robinson said that Stiglich was at the door and she was in the bedroom and that she could tell Ryan Robinson was angry by "looking at him, his tone of voice and how he was talking." When Ms. Eads asked her why she thought Ryan Robinson was angry, Jennifer Robinson said "Probably because I was over at Jud's."

Ms. Eads asked her, "What was Ryan saying?"

"He said he was gonna hurt us." When asked for specifics, Jennifer Robinson said," I'm gonna hurt you guys."

Jennifer Robinson said that she then walked out to her brother and said,"Bubby, let's go." She did not see any weapons in her brother's hand but she said she had a gun in her jacket pocket. Ms. eads asked her if she knew whether "Jud has his 45 at that time" or whether he had a gun at all. Jennifer Robinson responded,"After my brother was shot, I did."

Jennifer Robinson said that she grabbed her brother's arm and tried to get him into his car which was parked in the driveway on the other side of Stiglich's truck. Ryan Robinson's car was running with loud music blasting and in between sobs, she said, "I almost had him in the car. I told him Bubby, let's go home. He was trying to get away from me. He moved around me. He wouldn't listen to me."
Then she testified that Stiglich opened his garage, and that she got into the car and heard Stiglich ask her brother "if he was going to hurt me." Stiglich was standing inside the garage and she cannot remember if her brother responded. "Ryan went over to Jud and then I heard a shot." Jennifer Robinson was crying, Judson Stiglich was crying and Stiglich and Robinson family members were crying at this point.

Jennifer Robinson said that she got out of the car and heard Stiglich ask her brother, "Did I hurt you?" and Ryan Robinson respond, "Yeah" and then he fell backwards. She said her brother was standing on the gravel by the garage and that Stiglich was standing by the door of the garage.

Jennifer said that when Ryan had walked from the car towards Stiglich, "he was angry", she paused and then continued, "he was angry for me being with Jud. Usually my brother would listen to me but he wasn't listening to me and he was trying to get away from me." She also said that earlier she heard her brother say, "I'm going to get my gun."

When she heard the shot, she ran towards her brother and "All I could do is look at my brother's eyes while he was falling. I don't remember anything else."

Jennifer Robinson then ran to "Zach's house." He is Stiglich's brother and lives nearby. "I was freaking out. I wanted them to call the cops." Jennifer said she was screaming. "Jud just shot my brother." She is not sure who opened the door but she remembers Zach and his girlfriend Kelly.
"I didn't know what to do. I didn't know where Jud was." Then "I ran outside and seen Jud." She said she was "screaming for Jud and saw him by the garden."

"He had a gun to his head" When Ms. Eads asked her if Stiglich said anything, Jennifer said, "He said he was gonna shoot himself." She could not remember the specific words. She was crying and Stiglich wiped away tears after Mr. Clanton handed him a tissue.

"I begged him not to; please don't do that Jud." She said she could not remember if he gave her the gun or she took it from Stiglich. "I took the gun and said please don't do this." She said they went to her "mom's house, through the woods,  to pray." Jennifer Robinson could not remember what the gun looked like, "I don't know" she said to Ms. Eads, "maybe black and silver."

Ms. Eads asked if they went directly to her mother's house and Jennifer Robinson said, "No, we stopped at Cutten school and I threw the gun into a bush."

"Why did you throw the gun?" asked Ms. Eads.

"I was scared he was going to kill himself and I didn't want him to, he was my best friend." Jennifer Robinson said that Stiglich asked for the gun back but "I was begging him not to; I can't lose my Bubby and my best friend all in one night. I told him we had to go to my mom's house and pray."

Jennifer Robinson said that they woke her mother up and told her what had happened and asked her to "pray." When her mother came to the door, Jennifer Robinson said that she "told her my brother had been shot and that I did it because no one would believe it was an accident and I don't want my family to hate Jud."

Ms. Eads asked her, "What was Jud's response?" Jennifer Robinson said that Stiglich said, ""We have to tell the truth."

"Did he tell your mom he shot Ryan?"

"I think so," said Jennifer Robinson.

"I started to pray. I told Jud we had to pray and we prayed. Then my mom said Jud needed to go home and I gave Jud a hug and a kiss and he walked out of there." Jennifer Robinson said her mom left to go to the hospital "to meet my brother but he never showed up. I prayed and listened to Brother McDonald preach on the video and waited until the cops came and picked me."

Ms. Eads asked Jennifer Robinson why she took off her jacket at Zach's house and she responded that she "was hot" and then later she said she took off her shirt, possibly in the woods for the same reason and Stiglich gave her a sweatshirt.

Ms. Eads asked her why she told her mother that she shot her brother. Jennifer Robinson said that, "Jud is not a hateful person. He was never mean. I didn't feel like he could kill my Bubby. He knew how much Ryan meant to me. He didn't have vengeance in his heart towards Ryan."

Ms. Eads asked Jennifer Robinson why she didn't call 911. "I thought they were already there, I remember hearing sirens."

Previous post with other links and charges:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/01/ryan-robinsons-family-stares-at-judson.html?m=1

Feb 15, 2015

A US town has done more for persecuted Christians while our nation and world leaders just watch another beheading

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/02/13/symbol-hope-for-persecuted-christians/

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
Edmund Burke

Eureka rally to kick off 40 days of life is part of the largest international pro-life coordinated effort

 “We truly pray that this 40 Days for Life campaign will mark the beginning of the end of abortion in Humboldt County and beyond,” said Stephanie Goodwin, who coordinates the local effort.

“We will start our campaign with a rally at the corner of Walford Avenue and Wilson Street on Tuesday, February 17, 2015 at 6:30 p.m.”

Eureka is one of 559 cities in 27 nations across the globe coming together to make 40 Days for Life the largest internationally coordinated pro-life mobilization in history.

Through prayer and fasting, community outreach, and peaceful prayer vigil, God has used 40 Days for Life to spare 9,699 babies
from abortion, bring 107 abortion workers to Christ, and close 59 abortion centers. Join 40 Days for Life in Eureka from February 18 – March 29 to pray for the end of abortion. “We start this effort by drawing
members of the community together to share the vision of 40 Days for Life and to pray for God’s blessings on this effort. It is time to focus attention on the harm abortion has done to our city,” said
Allen Rode, previous Coordinator.

“This will mark the start of 40 days of prayer and fasting, with special attention to prayer in the public right-of-way near Planned Parenthood: 3225 Timber Fall Court, Suite B, in Eureka, California, as well
as various types of community outreach. We believe that every life is precious and look forward to seeing what kind of transformation God will bring about in our city,” said Lucinda Jackson, Public
Relations Coordinator.

All prayer vigil participants are asked to sign a statement of peace, pledging to conduct themselves in a Christ-like manner at all times.

40 Days for Life is a peaceful, intensive campaign that focuses on 40 days of prayer and fasting, 40 days of peaceful vigil at abortion facilities, and 40 days of grassroots educational outreach. The 40-day time
frame is drawn from examples throughout Biblical history where God brought about world-changing transformation in 40-day periods.

For information about 40 Days for Life in Eureka, California, visit: www.40daysforlife.com/eureka.

Meth and cocaine found on Garberville suspect who had warrant out for his arrest

On 02-11-2015, at approximately 5:57 p.m., a Sheriff’s Deputy with the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office was patrolling the area of downtown Garberville.  The deputy observed several suspicious people standing near a parked 1994 Ford Mustang near the 900 block of Redwood Drive.  As the deputy passed by, the people seemed to become nervous and started dispersing.  This particular area was known to the deputy to be a high drug trafficking area.
A short time later the deputy observed the Mustang traveling N/B on Redwood Drive.  The deputy followed the vehicle which later turned onto Alderpoint Road and parked in a dirt pull out.
Upon contacting the occupants of the vehicle, the deputy learned the driver, Robert Joseph Cullen, was not licensed nor did he possess any identification.  Cullen also had a local warrant for his arrest.  Cullen was taken into custody and a subsequent search of his vehicle yielded approximately 16.2 grams of suspected methamphetamine and approximately 2.6 grams of suspected cocaine.
Cullen was transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked for possession of a controlled substance, driving unlicensed, and his warrant.  Cullen was later released upon his own recognizance.