Aug 22, 2015

Sentencing for Phoenix Campbell-Loya delayed to get information on possible mental health issues

On 8/17, Phoenix Campbell-Loya was to be sentenced by Judge Miles. On June 29, Phoenix Campbell-Loya was found guilty by the jury of Count 1 assault and Count 2 carrying a concealed dirk and dagger. Count 1 is a felony. He was supposed to be sentenced on July 27; his attorney, Ms. Meagan O'Connell from the Public Defender's office asked for a continuance. She had not received the probation report and requested time to meet with him.

On August 17, Judge Miles granted the motion filed by Ms. O'Connell to reduce the felony charge to a misdemeanor according to PC 17 (b). Campbell-Loya's sentencing was delayed because Judge Miles wanted to refer him for assessment according to PC 1203.03 before making her final decision.

Judge Miles said, "there is question whether there are drug induced mental health issues or mental health issues" and she needed more information before sentencing. She added there was no indication that he was under the influence" the day the incident occurred.  She referred to the reports that were done to evaluate Campbell-Loya and he "was found competent each time. In the recent report, he was found competent, despite mental health issues." A court order was issued to place Campbell-Loya in a diagnostic facility.

Next court date is October 13 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 2.

Previous post (with links to all coverage):

1203.03.  (a) In any case in which a defendant is convicted of an
offense punishable by imprisonment in the state prison, the court, if
it concludes that a just disposition of the case requires such
diagnosis and treatment services as can be provided at a diagnostic
facility of the Department of Corrections, may order that defendant
be placed temporarily in such facility for a period not to exceed 90
days, with the further provision in such order that the Director of
the Department of Corrections report to the court his diagnosis and
recommendations concerning the defendant within the 90-day period.
   (b) The Director of the Department of Corrections shall, within
the 90 days, cause defendant to be observed and examined and shall
forward to the court his diagnosis and recommendation concerning the
disposition of defendant's case. Such diagnosis and recommendation
shall be embodied in a written report and copies of the report shall
be served only upon the defendant or his counsel, the probation
officer, and the prosecuting attorney by the court receiving such
report. After delivery of the copies of the report, the information
contained therein shall not be disclosed to anyone else without the
consent of the defendant. After disposition of the case, all copies
of the report, except the one delivered to the defendant or his
counsel, shall be filed in a sealed file and shall be available
thereafter only to the defendant or his counsel, the prosecuting
attorney, the court, the probation officer, or the Department of

Family members of the victims in the Jason Warren request Judicial Council action after they learn no Judge has been assigned and there may be another postponement

This post I did on 8/17 is already having an impact and the family members in the Jason Warren case are doing something about it. , I will be following up with him and the Judicial Council regarding the letter from family members of the alleged victims in the Jason Warren case. They cannot comment about the case due to the gag order but they can address what they are doing about the two Judges Humboldt County has been authorized for because this will impact the upcoming homicides and other cases.

Yesterday, I was contacted by Dorothy Ulrich's mother, Shirley Ortega. She is in Humboldt County now and was hoping to attend the jury trial for Jason Warren, the man charged with killing her daughter. There has been continuance after continuance. Ms. Ortega was travelling from Washington and was not able to sign the letter available mentioned below.

The letter signed by Hank Seemann, Jessie Hunt and Terri-Vroman-Little dated August 21, 2015 was sent to Humboldt County Superior Court Interim CEO Mike Tozzi, DA Maggie Fleming, Holly Hensher, from Victim Witness, and two Judicial Council officers, Tani Cantil-Sakauye and Martin Hoshino.

It refers to the Jason Warren case and the current scheduled trial date of September 14, in the letter they state that "we understand that a Judge has not been assigned for this case and there is substantial risk for postponement of the trial until 2016 due to lack of an unavailable judge in Humboldt County."

They ask that all possible options be explored with the Judicial Council to secure an available judge from a neighboring county or a travelling judge.

They talk about the fact that the case has had numerous delays and the impact it has had on their families. The three year anniversary is coming up. Ms. Ortega told me that she had to move her family to Washington and has to make travel plans to come down for the trial and the case keeps getting continued. Other family members of the other alleged victims are in a similar dilemma. Ms. Ortega acknowledged that while most of the delays were under former DA Paul Gallegos, the families are frustrated with the current situation. As mentioned in the letter, there are afraid more delays will be detrimental to testimony and evidence such as witnesses leaving the area. This will impact more than just the families in this case and that is one of the reasons, Mrs. Ortega contacted me. She said family members of the other victims are aware that she was going to contact me.

Continuances, continuances, not enough courtrooms and Judges, how will this affect the 10 upcoming homicide trials?
Almost every trial assignment calendar, and the calendar to assign preliminary hearings, there are quite a  few continuances due to not enough courtrooms being available on a regular basis. This just delays the problem down the road.

Cases are sometimes sent to the courtrooms that hear civil cases or family law cases. The Judges that preside over the criminal cases sometimes do jury trials back to back, in addition to their regular workload.

The Judges have to juggle all this with not time waived cases, last minute motions, making sure all the due process is met, prosecutors and defense attorneys are sometimes having multiple cases scheduled in one morning.

Humboldt County has been authorized to have two more Judges but the State needs to provide funding. There are 10 upcoming homicide cases, including two very high profile cases that will have lengthy jury trials; one being the Jason Warren case, the other the Gary Lee Bullock case.

I tried to get in contact with the interim CEO of the Humboldt Superior Court, Mike Tozzi but the email was returned as undeliverable. Hopefully, someone will read the blog and pass him the information. One of the changes Mr. Tozzi could implement since he received an award for running Stanislaus County is that other Superior Courts have emails listed for court administration, why don't we?

So, if you have a beef why a case is taking so long, look to the state that has cut funding which results in shorter hours at the clerk's office and creates the backlog above. And an overworked staff. We deserve those two Judges, and we needed them not yesterday, but more like months ago, years ago.

Humboldt needs to stop being the step child of California and the State needs to put some money instead of passing more laws that create gridlock.

Let's shed some facts on the latest NCJ article about the sexually violent predator and Tuluwat's recent post questioning the current DA administration

Tuluwat's post is surprisingly balanced compared to their normal blather, but they could not resist their pot shots at Rose and me. Tuluwat does not cover the courts, they do no original posts based on actual coverage of an event, they reprint opinions and raise questions and take pot shots at others, selectively distorting facts to suit their spin. If they were present somewhere, how would we know because they are "anonymous."

I don't need to defend Maggie Fleming. As I have pointed out before she has been in office 7 months compared to her predecessor's 12 years. Let's compare his record on which violent criminals and sexual predators were released when Paul was into the community versus Maggie's. A big deal is being made by Tuluwat  because the John Kufner case did not result in a guilty verdict. What the jury said was they needed more information and made their decision based on evidence provided in that trial.

NCJ takes one case and talks about a flawed system.

NCJ that is supported heavily by pot ads, NCJ that does not call out Richard Salzman, Paul Gallegos, the cannabis industry as vigorously on their issues such as exploitation of women and environmental damage and roadblocks to creating jobs all which impact  safety and the community. These are all people who are not happy Maggie Fleming got elected. NCJ and the other media have no clue how many lawyers, self proclaimed "top" lawyers by their own definition, are not getting the plea deals now for their grower and other pet clients under this administration. Shockingly, plea deals are made based on the case, not who can pay the most under Maggie's administration.

Most of the rest of the media sits in an office, gathers reports, gets press releases and has lawyers write their articles when they need to have explained what happened in court. Under Paul's administration, certain media got those favors. They picked up the phone, called the DA's office and got their story. They have more than one staff writer and ad reps who pay their salary.

Until I started covering the courts, there was no interest in the courts, now the rest media jumps on the bandwagon, occasionally covering a case and in a few cases, not giving credit to me, the original source for breaking the story and extensive coverage. I was the only one that covered the David Anderson case for all 3 trials. I was the only one who covered the Randy Cook case. I was the only one who covered the Ronald Young case. Months later, there is a story in TS regarding Anderson as if that was the first time it was reported. I did a post on Game Over way before NCJ's latest article. Was credit given?

North Coast News gives me credit, Mad River Union gives me credit, LOCO has given me credit. Kym Kemp has given me credit.

The Kailan Meserve story was ignored. NCJ developed an interest in it recently because now it may go to trial. The rest of the media won't touch it and if they do, let's see if it is leaning towards the defense.

I do not see Tuluwat calling out the bias and conflict of many media sources that heavily depend on the marijuana ad revenue for their existence.

I was approached by two public defenders, to look into the Drew Stonebarger case. One of those public defenders was Mr. Luke Brownfield, who left the DA's office this year.

The same prosecutor who had two mistrials in the David Anderson case, in one case because victims did not follow evidence rules and caused a mistrial. The plea deal in the Anderson case was not under DA Maggie Fleming's administration. The same prosecutor who lost an alleged child molestor case to Kaleb Cockrum, the James Colby, Jr. case. Colby was acquitted of all charges. This was under Paul's administration. Was the media so huffed up about those cases?

I don't blame Luke, I blame Paul. I like  Luke as a person and he seems happier as a public defender. In those cases, should I blame Luke like Tuluwat who seem to be jumping on Mr. Andrew Isaac based on one case, based on no knowledge other than what was told to them. How did NCJ learn of the Drew Stonebarger case? That is a question worth asking.

None of us were in court for the Stonebarger case. Court transcripts don't tell the whole story because attorneys have private discussions in the hallway and during intervention.

I chose not to look into the Drew Stonebarger case further because the court system records were vague at the time I was asked and it did not include details why the case was dismissed. I also questioned the motivation. NCJ claims the system is flawed, so why not look into the local court adminstration, the CEO that left,  why orders and paperwork do not make it to Judges on time, which is often. In the Drew Stonebarger case, more questions need to be asked. Was it the rest of the media that broke that story about Kerri Keenan or has even bothered to follow up on the story that I broke? In my detailed coverage of the courts you see why the system is flawed. And part of that flaw is that while civil rights are important, they should not be at the expense of the community and victims and that needs to be reflected in the laws. Criminals get off on technicalities sometimes, not necessarily innocence; criminals have so many rights, and they and the public defenders do use the system to their advantage at times. These flaws sometimes results in people like Stonebarger being released.

I also question the motivation of that one case being used by people that have an agenda to make this current administration look bad. Should there be improvements in the ways things are handled, of course.

I also had other cases and several jury trials at the same time involving similar issues which were just as important. I have covered more sex abuse cases and cases involving violence against women than the rest of this media in the last two years since I started this blog. These are stories I develop, research and seek out out a gut feeling on a case.

There have been victories by this administration, did NCJ include those? Blowing one case like Stonebarger out of proportion is disingenuous. And what is the motive? That anyone can approach media and spin a story.

I take daily risk by putting my name out there, I don't hide behind a screen like Tuluwat. When the Tuluwat decides to risk taking on growers, repeat criminals, corruption at a personal and financial risk, and actually do some legwork, maybe I will give a damn what they think.

Maggie, unlike Paul, admitted that changes need to be made in procedure.

Tuluwat talks about 4 Deputy DA's leaving. Luke Brownfield left on his own. Moksha Chattopadhya left for a better job, so did Jason Sheets. Ms. Neel can have more than one reason to leave. Ms. Neel worked under Paul for 12 years, she has done a remarkable job of working under impossible conditions, trying case after case involving women and children and she has a good record of success.

Did the Tuluwat list how many attorneys left under Paul?
Here is a link

Unlike the rest of the media, I do not have multiple staff members, covering the occasional case, via a phone interview and sometimes being in court. I cover live, I cover cases all day, sometimes 3 or 4 at the same time. I get the information out instantly or quickly, competing with several media sources for attention in a world that cares more about instant clicks than people or quality news.

I cover the courts because I do have knowledge and I know the players and the background that is not included in "news" articles. Knowledge that I have shared with my colleagues in the media. This is my niche for a reason.

Littlefield appellate decision, possible third jury trial kicked into 2016?

The above is the link to the apellate court on this case.

Notice the entries of 8/17:

08/17/2015Motion filed.    Leave to file supplemental respondent's brief.
08/17/2015Request for judicial notice filed.    Respondent

Based on the comment local attorney Allan Dollison left on my last post, I contacted him for comment on this development.

"There is an entry in Littlefield wherein his new Court-appointed appellate attorney is requesting leave to file supplemental briefing. No surprise. He didn't write the original ones. The suspended attorney did. This will definitely be granted. I predicted this would happen. Further delay. Likely no decision until 2016," said Mr. Dollison.

Last post:
Apellate court not requesting oral arguments or additional briefings in Timothy Littlefield case, according to his lawyer
Alleged child molestor Timothy Littlefield had a disposition and reset hearing scheduled in Courtroom 2 this afternoon. If you are not the familiar with the case, this case has gone to trial twice, there is currently an appeal about the last trial pending, please read links below.

Mr. Russ Clanton represents Littlefield. Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett is prosecuting the case. Today, Mr. Clantion told Judge Marilyn Miles and Ms. Bennett that "The Apellate court  is not requesting oral arguments or additional briefings in Timothy Littlefield case." He asked for another continuance and another disposition and reset hearing date in 45 days. Next court date is September 29 at 2 p.m.

Previous posts:
(this post has other links and background)

These are the comments from that post:

Ok, Appellate Courts do not ASK for oral arguments. Oral arguments are afforded to litigants who ask for them. In this case Littlefield's newly appointed appellate attorney has done that on June 8. Since the matter was fully briefed neither side has the right and the Court of Appeals never asks for additional briefing. Prior to Oral Arguments the Court of Appeals will sometimes send out argument focus letters. Those are valuable insights into what they see as the issues, and what thruway to hear about during oral argument. They are not requests for additional briefing. The primary issue in this case is what evidence is appropriate for a trial court to consider from jury deliberations. The rule is very little, due to the sanctity and secrecy of the jury deliberations. I will admit that the Court is taking longer than normal to schedule oral arguments, but unless Littlefield withdraws his request, which is nil as his new lawyer did not write those briefs. It would be malpractice to not request arguments. There WILL be oral arguments.

This is what the docket entry says about Litlefield. These are the facts.
  1. Allan, I reported what Mr. Clanton said in court. Neither Judge Miles or Ms. Bennett had received anything, in fact Judge Miles brought up a point about appellate decisions. You have been on the money. Thanks for the link. I need to check why I did not get that update. Did not have time to get the link. Been a busy day and week.

Aug 21, 2015

Former HCOE teacher Ronald Young who plead guilt to spousal abuse, false imprisonment and criminal threats sentenced to 365 days in jail, probation and community service

Ronald Young was sentenced to 365 days in jail by Judge Timothy Cissna on August 19. He was not remanded that day, as requested by the People and the victim but he had a commit date today to report at 9 a.m. I just confirmed that he is at the Humboldt County Correctional Facility and housed in a protective custody unit.

The victim, along with two friends was present for sentencing and chose not to speak. She did submit a letter to Judge Cissna and conveyed certain requests through Deputy District Attorney Kelly Neel.

There were a few changes from the plea, one being that he did get some prison time, his attorney Mr. Neal Sanders tried to argue for 90 days in jail and increase in community service hours. Judge Cissna chose to sentence Young to 365 days in jail and he will be 5 years of formal supervised probation, 100 hours of community service, other than a $10,000 check that was given to the victim, Young's ex-wife in court on 8/19, a restitution hearing is set to determine additional restitution. Other than that the conditional plea terms remained the same as the final. He was served with a criminal protective order in court and he cannot possess firearms for life.

The sex offender registration language was modified and certain parts of the probation report were stricken after Mr. Sanders advocacy for his client. Mr. Young's mother paid his attorney fees.

There were passionate arguments back and forth between Ms. Neel and Mr. Sanders after Judge Cissna's tentative decision.

There was a mid-afternoon break scheduled in between attorney arguments and Judge Cissna apologized but it was late in the afternoon when sentencing started and he had called double calendars that day and the staff are required to have a break.

Ronald Young had expected to breeze through sentencing, perhaps get a lighter slap on the wrist and looked shocked and smug and showed no remorse. His brother, who was with him in court approached me during the break while I was working and harassed me and I told him to leave me alone. He just laughed and walked away. The Young family is not happy that I covered this case. One of the reasons I did is because Ronald Young still has a lot of support in the community, as evidenced by the many letters of support he was given. The community is not aware and would not be aware of cases like this and another woman could be a future victim  Not every case make headlines and gets a press release issued when one is arrested.

As DDA Kelly Neel pointed out, while the people who knew Mr. Young and wrote these letters are sincere, "no one us knows what goes on beyond closed doors."

It was very telling that the victim's daughters wanted to be included in the protective order for the victim, Young's ex-wife. They were not but Judge Cissna said they could pursue their own protective orders.

I will update this post later with details of both attorneys arguments...

Last post:

Jul 15, 2015

Former HCOE teacher Ronald Young enters guilty plea to spousal abuse, false imprisonment and criminal threats

Instead of the contempt hearing scheduled a day before his jury trial, the victim, who was sitting next to me in court with a friend, watched as her ex-husband plead guilty to three counts.

Ronald Young, a former Humboldt County Office of Education teacher who was charged with four felonies and a misdemeanor, had his jury trial scheduled to start tomorrow.

He was charged with Count 1  Penal Code 220 (a) 1 Rape, Count 2  Penal Code 243.4 (a) Sexual battery, Count 3  Penal Code 236 False imprisonment, Count 4 273.5 (a) Inflict Corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant and Count 5  591.5 Damage/destroy Wireless Communication.

He plead guilty to three felonies this afternoon Count 4 Inflict Corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant  , Count 3 False imprisonment and a Count 6 of  Penal Code 422, criminal threats.

Counts 1, 2 and 5 were dismissed.

He is too register as a sex offender and while he could be sentenced to prison, the plea deal will most likely be for formal supervised probation. If he successfully completes probation, he will no longer be required to register as a sex offender.

He has to do a 52 week certified batterer's program and pay certain mandatory fines that are for crimes related to domestic violence, and he will be served with a mandatory criminal protective order. At the time of plea, "county jail time remained open" said Judge Cissna.

 He is to pay restitution to the victim and at sentencing, he will make a payment of $10,000. He could be required to pay $10,000 fine for each felony.

If the plea is accepted, he will serve a total of five years and 8 months. Judge Cissna  explained that the plea was the maximum of 4 years for the felony of spousal abuse and 8 months each consecutively for the other two counts.

This is a conditional plea that was entered today in front of Judge Timothy Cissna. After Probation weighs in on a pre-sentencing report, Judge Cissna can accept or reject the plea.

The plea deal was reached after DDA Kelly Neel consulted with the victim. I know this firsthand from the victim, whose story I have shared in my coverage.

Sentencing is August 19 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 4.
Previous posts:

It's too early to say for sure but the coronation of Mike Wilson is not a given

Looks like the coronation of Mike Wilson for Third district Supervisor is not a given. There are others besides Uri Driscoll considering a run.

Uri Driscoll makes official his run for third district Supervisor

Longtime Arcata businessman and environmental advocate Uri Driscoll announced today his candidacy for Humboldt County third district supervisor. Driscoll has lived in Humboldt County for 33 of his 55 years where he lives with his wife, dogs, horses and assortment of other critters. He has operated his professional farrier business for 26 years. During that time he has had the privilege of getting to know a wide variety of people and understand perspectives on everything from lack of public process to improving our schools and public safety.
“It is clear that the public’s interest is not only in grandiose schemes but in the day to day smaller things that make our lives fulfilling and rewarding,” Driscoll said.
Driscoll has been one of the tireless advocates for sustainable trail systems through his work with Northern California Horseman’s Association and Humboldt Redwoods State Parks Mounted Assistance Unit and his daily use of community trails. Concerted efforts by Driscoll and others have made sure that coastal plant eradication projects take into account the unintended and detrimental effects to coastal wetlands, valuable wildlife habitats and the increased exposure to risks associated with expected sea level rise.
As third district supervisor he plans to bring together ideas and concerns from the diverse voices of the district and county.
“We have the opportunity to be innovative in our approach to enhancing the many aspects of Humboldt County life we hold dear,” Driscoll said. “That approach will require being inclusive and open to fresh, creative ideas while honoring our history and those who have worked so hard before us.”
As a life-long Democrat, Driscoll understands that sound, sensible solutions are found by including a wide spectrum of ideas from community members as well as soliciting broad minded experts.  
“Our challenges include protecting our infrastructure, homes and agriculture lands from expected sea level rise, reigning in the rampant destruction from marijuana grows and providing support and encouragement for the development of sustainable, living-wage jobs,” Driscoll said.
Driscoll strongly feels the need to engage resourcefulness and teamwork to create a better community and that the county’s challenges will take out-of-the-box thinking and commitment that he enjoys bringing to the table.
“My role as third district supervisor will be to work effectively with the people of the third district, county staff and fellow supervisors to include a wide variety of perspectives to develop responsible and affordable solutions to make this place we call home even better,” Driscoll said.

Larry Doss kicks off campaign August 24 near the Madaket

Larry O. Doss, a candidate for the open District One seat on the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation & Conservation District board will kick off his campaign with a  rally at the base of C Street, Eureka (where the Madaket docks) at 12:15 p.m., Monday, August 24. 

Among those attending will be Dennis Hunter, former president of the Harbor board; Supervisor Rex Bohn and Ken Bates veteran fisheries expert.

About his campaign, Doss says, “As an elected board member, I will concentrate on working with the board to create a multi-year strategic plan to bring new jobs and revenue to the harbor. A successful job strategy will help the county’s economy and will also allow the District to enhance its recreation and conservation programs.”

Kelly Neel leaving DA's office to work for Public Defender

Kelly Neel leaving DA's office to work for the Public Defender. She starts September 21.

This will be the third exit from the DA's office in one month. Two new hires. Ms. Chattopadhya and Mr. Sheets do not have the experience and winning record of Ms. Neel. This is a huge loss to the DA's office.

update soon with comments from Ms. Fleming...

Released less than two weeks ago, and he's back in jail

From LOCO's booked:

Yesterday, 3:50 p.m.

I was in court, and this was in the latter part of last week.

Aug 20, 2015

Meserve's attorney says his client was being romantic, it wasn't rape; disses Deputy DA's remarks as "tawdry layering"

In closing arguments, Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett did an excellent job of summarizing the testimony of DA Investigator Kyla Baxley and the statements given to her by Jane Doe #1 and Jane Doe #2 and relating how they apply to the counts charged.

Mr. Clanton had hyperbole but his remarks were often not supported by the testimony.

Ms. Bennett first spoke about Jane Doe #1. "This is a situation where the defendant and victim met the night before. She had concerns about what happened. She asked for a ride home to talk about the previous night. He did not take her home. She was in a panic mode. She froze. He ordered her to take off her clothes, he kissed her, she didn't kiss him back. He forced her to have oral sex. he choked her, he orally copulated her, he put his penis in her vagina against her will. Her breasts were sore. " She summarized more about the incident. "He threatened her, she was in fear even after that day. Regarding 209 b (1), the defendant did have sexual intercourse with her, took her there without her consent, he moved her there to isolate her and to commit those acts.  She was in an area not familiar to her, with a male, without a vehicle. Reagrding 245 a (1) that is the strangulation. It is easy to kill someone by strangulation. He had his hands on her throat. She had difficulty breathing. Strangulation can cause brain damage. Reagrding criminal threats, he said, "he would freeze her body and feed her to the animals."

Mr. Russ Clanton, who represents Kailan Meserve responded after Ms. Bennett spoke about Jane Doe # 1. "We have a situation where a woman is in town for a little over a month in a small area for trimming. She is introduced to Mr. Meserve for a potential job in trimming. She may have had concerns, she did not audibilize any concerns. She seeks out ride. As far as Mr. Meserve is concerned this is romantic. Despite tawdry layering by counsel, he didn't have forceful sex because Investigator Baxley said, he couldn't even do it. Force/fear was after the fact.

Ms. Bennett briefly responded about Jane Doe # 1 and Mr. Clanton's remarks. "Seeking a ride home doesn't give him the right to do whatever he wants to. The testimony is that she did not kiss him. He had difficulty maintaining an erection but his penis did enter the vagina. The People will admit to no testimony about digital penetration for Count 5."

Then Ms. Bennett spoke about Jane Doe # 2. Ms. Bennett summarized the same way she did for Jane Doe # 1. This is the link to that post which has all the details that the alleged victims gave.

"She woke up to defendant on top of her, he did kiss her and proceeded to cover her mouth when she tried to audibilize. He pulled her hair so tight, he put his penis in her mouth, he put his penis in her vagina, he made her touch his penis and testicles, her breasts hurt for days, she did not consent. It stopped because he was unable to perform. Due to level of intoxication, she went back to sleep, he came back and did it again. He performed oral sex on her. Her friend remembers her being very upset. Testimony was that Mr. Meserve was cold and that he came back, he did so to commit acts with a woman who was unconscious. In pretext call, he apologized if he did anything wrong. He called her by Jane Doe #1's name. Similar events described by two women who did not know each other.

In his response about Jane Doe # 2, Mr. Clanton's soliloquy was not supported by actual testimony at this hearing.  "This court is going to have to believe Mr. Meserve is going to brutally rape a woman few feet away from a woman who is like a sister to him. This isn;t reported for a year. Why does Ashley (the friend, not the victim) go out to lunch with Mr. Meserve later that day? Why does Mr.Meserve show up to take them to breakfast?"

In her rebuttal, Ms. Bennett said, "Counsel is taking liberty with testimony and questions. Given level of inebriation, it is reasonable that she went back to sleep and that she may not have been able to go down the loft that first time. She did after the second time."

Kailan Meserve

Mr. Clanton has also represented other high profile local clients like alleged child molestor Timothy Littlefield who made headlines with his marijuana bust and lawsuit and is currently fighting an appeal by the People regarding the verdict in his last trial.

We don't need a parklet or an Economic Commission, we need 4 Eureka City Councilmembers to get a clue

The new progressive majority on the Eureka City Council, citing budget issues, cuts police and fire services but they do have money to experiment on parklets. Their idea to improve the local economy is to create a new Economic Commission.

That's just what we need, more ideas.

This is what happens when you have three Councilmembers who don't own a business and one who has a primarily a government service employment background. Only Councilmember Marian Brady owns a business, has built a business and gets what a small business owner trying to survive goes through.

Parklets will reduce parking which is already a problem for customers and employees but provide more places for tweakers, bums and drunks to camp out in Old Town. Anyone who lives and works in Old Town is used to the all night ranting, screaming and property being used by miscreants. Raise your hand if you clean up trash and other "crap" literally on a daily basis and if you dare go out and confront these individuals, they get attitude. They aren't sleeping, they are drunks, day and night, who will not take advantage of resources offerred or go look for services available. Is this what I get for my business license fee going up twice as much?

The solution to Economic Development is not to create another bureaucracy of seven advisors, it is for the City of Eureka to be more business friendly and look at their permit, fee and regulation process.

The new Eureka Council majority has been an utter failure at reducing homelessness, nor do they have a clue about creating jobs. What decision of substance has the new majority of Eureka City Council made? Those that voted in the new Council remain silent as usual because their electeds have done zip, nada except increase the burden on the few businesses that pay taxes and hire employees.

See the video for City of Eureka's Design and Review Meeting from August 12, 2015.

The Design and Review Guidelines portion of General Plan Update is $50,000 for a consultant. In light of recent cut-backs to police and fire, Community Development Director Rob Holmlund's plan is to shove it down the Taxpayers throats regardless of financial realities & community needs, ignoring what the Design and Review Committee members think. Is this how the City of Eureka treats it's "advisors" on Commissions, who volunteer their time?

The rest of the media does not question these things or do any investigation, just reports on the meetings. So much for informing the public. That is what you get when you have media that is used to getting fed press releases instead of developing their own stories.

Clanton's cross examination in Meserve case big on theatrics and short on facts

The cross examination of DA Investigator Kyla Baxley by Mr. Russ Clanton, who represents Kailan Meserve, was big on courtroom theatrics, short of facts supported by testimony during the preliminary hearing and mostly questions and assertions by Mr. Clanton, that may or may not be proved at jury trial.

There were a few points raised that could be answered by the People at jury trial when they present all their witnesses.

On Wednesday, Mr. Clanton's questioning of Ms. Baxley about Jane Doe #2 failed to impeach her testimony. He asked questions such as, "Did she tell you about spending time with Mr. Meserve and his wife?" Ms. Baxley responded, "Just time spent in community setting." Same as her direct testimony.

"Did she tell you he assisted her in getting set up at Ashley's residence?" The question has no relevance to the alleged rape.

"Did she tell you about a jacket he gave her and  tension between his wife and her due to perceived flirting?" Ms. Baxley responded, "Yes, I recall that." So, the answer only adds to the truthfulness of Jane Doe #2. It also shows that Meserve contributed to that tension by giving Jane Doe # 2 the jacket.

Then Mr. Clanton asked if Ms. Baxley was aware of the relationship between the Groeling family and the Meserve family. "My understanding is that the families are very close." Again, did not impeach Ms. Baxley or Jane Doe #2. In fact, it bolsters the fact that Ashley Groeling identified Kailan Meserve in a photo array as the one who her friend Jane Doe claimed as her rapist.

Mr. Clanton asked that the afternoon of the incident whether Jane Doe # 2 or Mr. Meserve's wife were uncomfortable being around each other to which Ms. Baxley responded that Jane Doe said no.

Ashley Groeling made a statement "they were all tanked" that night.

The three points that were raised during the cross that were in favor of the defense were one that Meserve had performed construction on the Groeling house and that he could "come and go as he pleased" according to Mr. Clanton; that Jane Doe # 2 said that Meserve did not threaten her, and that since Ashley Groeling was sleeping downstairs in an open area, Jane Doe # 2 could have alerted her because her mouth was not covered all the time and Meserve left for a period of time before he came back the second time.

Similarly on his cross examination of Jane Doe # 1, Mr. Clanton made a couple of valid points and on other questions only bolstered the victim's credibility  as well as Ms. Baxley's.. "Do you know a week later, she met with people in Petrolia about rumors about her and Mr. Meserve?" Investigator Baxley said, "Yes."

"Are you aware that she did not want this to be prosecuted?" Ms. Baxley said that was not said to her directly. "Jane Doe did not seek medical attention?" Ms. Baxley responded, "That is correct."

On re-direct, Ms. Bennett asked Investigator Baxley about concerns that Jane Doe # 1 had and Ms. Baxley said that "she told me she began to panic when Mr. Meserve turned in a different direction."

"Did she tell you that she had agreed to go anywhere other than home?" asked Ms. Bennett. Ms. Baxley said it was Jane Doe # 1's "understanding" that she was getting a ride home. In response to DDA Bennett's questions, Ms. Baxley said that Jane Doe # 1 showed resistance by "fidgeting and slowly removing her clothes." and that she did not consent because "she did not kiss him back".

Meserve did not exit the trailer at any time when he was with Jane Doe and that she was not familiar with the area (according to testimony, she had only been there about a couple of months) and that she felt she had "no other options" but to go inside the trailer.

Kailan Meserve

DA files motion to increase bail for machete wielding pizza delivery van and robbery suspect

The District Attorney's office has filed a motion to increase bail for Charles Kesserling. This will be heard on the same day as his arraignment for jury trial which is September 1 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 2.

Kesserling, the machete wielding pizza delivery van and robbery suspect was held to answer on all charges after his preliminary hearing which concluded yesterday. Alternate Conflict Counsel's Mr. Glenn Brown represented Kesserling. Deputy District Attorney Jackie Pizzo was the prosecutor for the hearing.

 Kesserling is charged with seven counts: Count 1 Evading a Peace Officer with a special allegation of a prison prior; Count 2 taking a vehicle without owner's consent; Count 3 Buy/Receive stolen vehicle/Equipment; Count 4 Carjacking; Count 4 Use of a deadly weapon with a prior; Count 5 Robber with special allegation of use of a deadly weapon; Count 6 Threats to commit crimes resulting in death with a special allegation of use of a deadly weapon and and Count 7 Assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm.

Previous posts:

Warren homicide jury trial set for September 14, assault case has disposition and reset hearing on August 31

A trial readiness is set for the homicide case at the same time as the disposition and reset hearing in the assault case, both at 3 p.m., which is when the Court is closed for intervention hearings. Alternate Conflict Counsel's Mr. Glenn Brown represents Jason Warren in the assault case. Public Defender's Mr. Kevin Robinson represents him in the homicide case.

District Attorney Maggie Fleming is prosecuting this case.

Previous post:

"He began to undress her, physically covered her mouth when she tried to speak. She tried to crawl out of the bed and he would pull her hair to keep her on the bed."

A year later after an alleged rape occurred "on or about Dec 26, 2013", District Attorney Investigator Kyla Baxley, spoke with one of the victims. The victim requested confidentiality and was referred to as Jane Doe #2. She had contacted a Deputy District Attorney who is an acquaintance after she had been referred to the D.A.'s office by HCSO's Deputy Haas.

Investigator Baxley was the only People's witness. The testimony is from her interviews with the two victims.

The alleged crime occurred the sometime during the night of December 25, 2013 and the morning hours of December 26, 2013. The victim was visiting friends in Petrolia, she lives in the Bay area and was a friend of Ashley Groeling.

On the night the alleged incident occurred, they met Kailan Meserve at the Yellow Rose, other people were also present. Jane Doe # 2 and Ashley Groeling went back to where they were staying, which was Ashley Groeling's dad's house (under construction at that time) and then to Meserve's house and then back to the Yellow Rose. After the that the two women returned to the house they were staying at.

Jane Doe #2 went to sleep in a loft area, her friend was sleeping downstairs. Jane Doe #2 "woke up to Meserve on top of her." Ms. Baxley clarified a minute later, "I believe he was laying on top of her."

DDA Brie Bennett asked how that made Jane doe feel. Ms. Baxley responded, "I don't recall the exact words, his entire demeanor made her surprised, scared and in shock." Initially, Meserve said nothing. "I believe Jane Doe responded, 'What are you doing?' 'I thought you had a wife and kids' and he covered her mouth.

"I believe Mr. Meserve said something to the effect 'No one will know' and 'Hush'," testified Investigator Baxley. "He began to undress her, physically covered her mouth when she tried to speak. She tried to crawl out of the bed and he would pull her hair to keep her on the bed."

Meserve was "forceful and quick" as he removed Jane Doe's clothes. She felt scared and threatened despite no outward threat. His demeanor intimidated her. "He attempted to have sex with her, attempted to put his penis in her vagina. He tried to get hard, he would attempt but was never was successful, when he was ocassionally hard, he would enter a little bit. She described him as frantic and forceful. I believe he forced her to suck on his penis, he orally copulated her and sucked on her breasts, made her touch his penis and testicles. She said he sucked and bit her breasts to the point they were sore for several days." There was also bruising on her breasts.

"She said she did not want these acts to happen. She said she felt afraid. She thought if she tried to resist, he would hit or harm her. When it stopped and he left, she wrapped herself in a blanket and tried to go to sleep and went back to sleep."

"Thirty minutes later, Mr. Meserve came back, again in bed, on top of her. Jane Doe indicated almost identical sequence of events; slight penetration, he was unable to remain hard, when hard he penetrated. The second time he digitally penetrated her. His fingers went inside her vagina."

"He was unable to get hard and he left." This time Jane Doe #2 went downstairs and woke her friend up. Meserve was identified in a "six-pack" by Groeling.

Jane Doe # 2 said she had met Meserve over a  year ago. "No direct, personal interaction with him prior" to this incident. Investigator Baxley was unable to speak with Meserve. There were two pretext calls made, one by Groeling, one by Jane Doe #2.  Investigator Baxley heard recordings of the calls.

In her interview, Jane Doe told Ms. Baxley that Meserve apologized "if anything happened between them" and that he remembers consent. Jane Doe "refuted" that and Meserve said that he did not remember that. He also called Jane Doe # 2 by Jane Doe #1's name and then corrected himself. Jane Doe #v 2 said it was a long conversation and she became upset with Meserve's responses.

Investigator Baxley spoke with another alleged victim on February 3, 2015 at the Arcata Police Department and this is an alleged incident that occurred "on or about November 9, 2014."

Jane Doe # 1 "is a traveling individual that came to Humboldt County looking for work, wanted to work in conservation, found work in the marijuana industry in Petrolia."

Jane Doe # 1 had seen Meserve at community events, she interacted with him one night at the Yellow Rose where she was with her friends, one named Troy, the other Kate Finnegan, who identified Meserve.

"Jane Doe # 1 did not remember what happened, her friends told her what happened. She was having a conversation with Mr. Meserve, her friend left to get a beer  and later they found her in the bathroom with "her pants around her ankles." She was concerned because she could not remember and hoped Mr. Meserve could shed some light. She asked him for a ride home, hoping to talk to him. He did not take her home. She asked him, "Where are you taking me? I want to go home."

He drove her to an area referred to as "the Grove." Jane Doe # 1 said she started to get a weird feeling and asked Meserve 'what was going on', she asked if he has a wife and kids because he was getting handsy."

"Jane Doe # 1 started to panic, she sort of froze because of his actions." They stopped at a trailer and went in. "She felt she had no option due to where they were geographically, she was afraid she would get hurt."

"Jane Doe # 1 said that he told her she was his bitch and if she did not do what he wanted her to, he would freeze her and feed her to the animals."

"At one point in the interaction, he asked her if she had been with anyone else in Petrolia." Jane Doe # 1 told Ms. Baxley she had not been with anyone else and she told Meserve that, "he told her that if he found out she had been with someone else, he would cut her and feed her to the animals."

"He told her to take her clothes off.  Jane Doe # 1 said he was becoming impatient how slowly she was removing her clothes. There was a bed in the trailer, no blankets. He forced her to give him oral sex, he started kissing her forcibly, her breasts and her neck, and biting them. She noticed they were sore for days after and there were some marks."

"I believe he did not have any clothes on," said Ms. Baxley in response to a question."He orally copulated her. When she was giving him oral sex, she felt it was a forced act. She started to choke while giving him oral sex, he choked her with hands around her neck and she was having difficulty breathing, he inserted his penis into her vagina, he told her she was weak and could not handle it."

"She wasn't sure if she had said the word no but she told him she did not want to do certain things, avoided contact with those body parts, he would call her his bitch and put his hand on the back of her head and forced his penis into her mouth."

"She thought it ended because he wasn't able to ejaculate. She said she did not want any of this to happen."

"She described Mr. Meserve as casual" said Investigator Baxley when asked about his demeanor throughout all this. Jane Doe # 1 told Investigator Baxley, "he said she was his girl and it is good to have a girl on the side. She remembers her breasts being sore and her vagina being raw and sore."

After this occurred, Jane Doe # 1 said that Meserve dropped her off at "Cedar's" house. "She told several people and gave Investigator Baxley names. Investigator Baxley did speak with Meserve about Jane Doe # 1.

DA Investigator Jack Bernstein and Investigator Baxley drove to Meserve's residence. His family was home so he requested they speak away from the home. She described his demeanor as the same as it was in the courtroom, which was no emotion. Meserve told Investigator Baxley that he was talking to Jane Doe # 1 on the porch and "they started making out"  and it did not proceed beyond that, on another night they went to "the Grove" and that they "orally copulated each other, he could not get hard and he believed the interaction was consensual. He did not hear her say no and that she did not want it."

Jane Doe # 1 told Investigator Baxley that she felt she had to leave the area given what had happened and because it is a small area, she felt scared.

Kailan Meserve

One count dismissed by People, two counts not held to answer; Kailan Meserve held to answer on 15 counts including forcible rape

Preliminary hearing started yesterday, concluded today.  DA Investigator Kyla Baxley testified yesterday about what the two victims told her. That was the major part of the preliminary hearing

North Coast Journal's Linda Stansbery attended today's court session, which was about an hour long with Mr. Clanton completing his cross examination of Ms. Baxley which was brief, then attorneys' arguments and Visiting Judge Bob McNatt's decision.

Despite a two million dollar bail and the serious charges in this case totalling 19 counts such as sexual battery, kidnapping, forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, criminal threats, assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury, this case has only been covered from arraignment to preliminary hearing by me. So, it was good to see Ms. Stansberry there today.

I happen to know from a conversation Mr. Clanton had in front of me and others in a hallway, that this case is personal, since he considers Kailan Meserve a friend.

The two counts Meserve was not held to answer was first degree residential burglary and assault to commit a felony during the commission of a first degree burglary.

There were five counts of forcible oral copulation, one count was dismissed by People because there were 4 alleged acts. Two counts for each victim; for  each victim, one alleged act involved oral sex performed on Meserve by the victim and the second count was alleged oral sex performed by Meserve on the victim. He was held to answer on those 4 charges of forcible oral copulation.

I will do other posts throughout the day with detailed graphic testimony of the two victims; these were statements they made to Investigator Baxley in which they allege that Kailan Meserve could not maintain an erection after penetration of the victim's vagina, that he allegedly choked one victim while he forced her to give him oral sex, that he allegedly called one victim his "bitch"and threatened to "freeze her body and feed her to the animals". One victim alleges two brutal rapes, one committed shortly after the first one, that victim also alleges Meserve covered her mouth when she attempted to speak, both victims allege that their breasts were sore for days after the alleged incidents. One victim left the area after the alleged rape.

One victim said she was asleep and "woke up to Mr. Meserve on top of her."

I got the exact counts and ruling on the counts from Ms. Bennett.

He was held to answer for 15 counts: PC209(b)(1), three counts of PC261(a)(2), six counts of PC288a(c)(2),PC245(a)(1), PC422, two counts of PC243.4(a) and PC289(a)(1).

No holding order for the penetration by foreign object (count 5), one of the forced oral copulation (count 15), and the two counts related to burglary (counts 10 and 19). I told the court that no evidence was submitted for counts 5 & 15.

This news item was shared on

Kailan Meserve

Previous posts:

Aug 19, 2015

"I don't know nuthin about nuthin" ; "If you move, I'll kill you"

Charles Kesserling, the machete wielding pizza deliveryvan and robbery suspect had a preliminary hearing yesterday. It concluded this morning. Alternate Conflict Counsel's Mr. Glenn Brown represented Kesserling. Deputy District Attorney Jackie Pizzo was the prosecutor for the hearing.

Kesserling was held to answer on all charges. Kesserling is charged with seven counts: Count 1 Evading a Peace Officer with a special allegation of a prison prior; Count 2 taking a vehicle without owner's consent; Count 3 Buy/Receive stolen vehicle/Equipment; Count 4 Carjacking; Count 4 Use of a deadly weapon with a prior; Count 5 Robber with special allegation of use of a deadly weapon; Count 6 Threats to commit crimes resulting in death with a special allegation of use of a deadly weapon and and Count 7 Assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm.

Two HCSO Deputies, Matthew Tomlin and Dustin Del Biaggio testified in detail about the incident which led to Kesserling's arrest. 

Kesserling's probation officer, Colleen Breuer-Herberts said that Kesserling never contacted probation after his release in April 2015, he never informed proibation that his residence had changed, he was not at the listed residence when she went to look for him and that he had never made contact with probation since his release, the last time. The probation officer was testifying for Kesselring's probation revocation hearing held at the same time.

I was the only one in the courtroom audience besides a couple of deputy district attorneys and some deputies briefly stopping in for the hearing. Instead of focusing on his hearing, Kesserling would from time to time glance back at me, glare at all of us, and tried to mumble about me being there. He still does not have a clue about an open courtroom, public information and press. Mr.Brown had to enlighten him and get him to focus.

On May 26, 2015, sometime after noon, Deputy Tomlin stopped at a red light on Harris, he was in a marked vehicle. He saw a Kia Spectra and "I saw all 3 occupants looking at my patrol car." He looked at the license plate and recognized it as one being reported stolen by the EPD. As he grabbed his radio to confirm this with dispatch, before he could call in, "the driver stepped on the gas and ran through the red light." 

Deputy Tomlin activated his sirens and lights and "pursued the vehicle". Deputy Tomlin described unsafe driving, endangering others as the Kia Spectra drove into the Safeway parking lot, then behind the Walgreens building, exiting without looking for traffic to Wood Street and then to the front entrance of St. Joseph's hospital ignoeing the speed limit then going out to Buhne, again running a red light and heading towards S Street. Since the Kia seemed to be headed towards a school, per policy, Deputy Tomlin called dispatch and said he was not pursuing the car anymore. He was driving the speed limit and was behind the Kia and could see it turn on O or P Streets. As he approached Eureka High, he was flagged down by "two kids who described a crazy driver" and other citizens who said the car was headed downtown. 

He was informed by Undersheriff William Honsal, Detective Todd Fulton and Detective Greg Musson that they had "located the stolen vehicle." When Deputy Tomlin arrived where the other HCSO staff were, he saw Kesserling enter into an apartment through a window and was told the other HCSO staff had "defendant in custody."

"Mr. Kesserling was in handcuffs. A male and female were sititng in chairs." They were later identified as Jennifer Wall-Kesserling and Robert Wall. Deputy Tomlin spoke with Charles Kesserling in his patrol car after reading him his Miranda rights and he said that Kesserling agreed to speak with him.

Deputy Tomlin told DDA Pizzo that he aked Kesserling who was driving and that "at first, he said AJ was driving and that AJ ran away prior to the arrival"of law enforcement.

When Deputy Tomlin told him, he was going to pull surveilance tapes from Safeway and St. Joe's, Kesserling changed his story and said he was the driver and  told Deputy Tomlin where the keys to the Kia were. Deputy Tomlin then questioned the other two separately.

Pate told Deputy Tomlin that "he bummed a ride" from Kesserling and that he did not know the vehicle was stolen.

Jennifer Wall-Kesserling said that "her husband was driving" but when Deputy Tomlin asked her if she knew if the vehicle was stolen, she said. "I don't know nuthin about nuthin."

CHP -180, a form filled when law enforcement tows a car was completed and the Kia was taken away. Kesserling was released later that day.

Deputy Del Biaggio was on duty the night of May 26, 2015 when the second incident occurred. He reported to a location, 1500 block of Peninsula near the Manila Community Center and spoke with the victim of a robbery, initials L.M.. Another Deputy had responded to another location where there had been a collision involving a white Ford.

The victim told him that he was a pizza delivery driver and that he "met two subjects at the Community Center. One ordered him out of his vehicle and had a machete and that several of his belongings were taken"

The victim "described several tatoos on the face of the person with the machete; devil horns tattoos above the eyebrows and on the cheek," said Deputy Del Biaggio.

Earlier that day Deputy Del Biaggio had contact with a person matching the victim's description in Manila Community Park. The deputy identified Kesserling as that person.

Deputy Del Biaggio took the victim to the location where Deputy Hicks was and the victim identified the truck as his vehicle. He described items that were missing: vehicle registration, paper work and ignition key.

Deputy Del Biaggio then took the victim home and took a statement. The victim told him that he went to deliver a pizza around 11:30 p.m. near the Manila Community Center and that "two people were sitting on the side of the road." One was the person with the tattoos and the other had a hooded sweatshirt and the victim gave a vague description of height and weight.

The victim confirmed that the order and then the person with the tattoos approached the  window and instead of payment, pulled out a machete and asked the victim to get out of the car. He ordered the victim to the ground and the victim followed his instructions. There were threats made by the person with the tattoos. "If you move, I'll kill you."

The person with the tattoos asked where the victim's wallet was and took it out of his back pocket and then asked where the victim's cell phone was and took that from the seat of the truck. He then told the victim to get up and run. At one point, when the victim ran into a dead end, he stopped and he heard a voice, "keep going or else" so he backtracked a bit and walled towards Peninsula Drive and then when he felt the others had left, he tried to get assistance. The vicitim told Deputy Del Biaggio he was afraid during the entire encounter.

 "He was afraid they would carry through the threats if he did not comply" is what Deputy Del Biaggio said on re-direct.

In a photo array, the victim identified Kesserling and he remembered the tatoos.

On cross by Mr. Brown, Deputy Del Biaggio said that there was a black pick up in the parking area that left the same time as when the victim's car was driven away and the victim assumed each of the two people drive one car. That is how they knew they had left the scene.

He prosecuted her, she served time in prison; now he is appointed by the Court as her defense attorney

Today James Cunha and Rebecca Hamline lucked out.

Allan Dollison, who has previously prosecuted both James Cunha and Rebecca Hamline, when he was a Deputy District Attorney, for which they served prison time was appointed by the court as Hamline's attorney this afternoon in Courtroom 1. Mr. Neal Sanders was appointed for Cunha. Mr. Dollison is now a private criminal defense attorney. Mr. Sanders is also a private attorney.

At the last hearing, they both had public defenders. When all public defender offices have conflicts, private attorneys are appointed for the defendants.

Moral of the story or if crime tip of the day, depending on your perspective is, do enough crime and you too can get a private attorney appointed at taxpayer's expense.

Previous posts:

Man who admitted to burning 60 year old over cigarettes arraigned today; seemed clueless and lost in court today

Three people were in court today to support Gary Lee Ross, one of them said, "he is my kid" and who spoke with Ross' attorney, Conflict Counsel's Mr. David Lee, right after the arraignment this afternoon in Courtroom 4.

Ross had glasses on in court and when Judge Cissna asked him how much he made per month, at first he said, "I don't know" and then he said, "no income." Deputy District Stacey Eads was present for the People. Mr. Lee asked dates be set on a "no time waived basis." Intervention hearing is at 3 p.m. on August 24 and the Preliminary hearing is on September 1 at 8:30/

EPD Press Release:

On 8/17/2015, at about 12:28 AM, Eureka Police Department officers responded to the report of a subject bleeding from the head in front of a bar on the 200 block of Third Street, Eureka.  Upon locating the 60-year-old male victim, officers discovered he had sustained injuries to his hands and fingers and significant burns to his face, neck, and head.

During their investigation, officers also contacted another male, Gary Lee Ross (age 24 of Eureka), who initially claimed to be a witness.  However, due to inconsistencies in Ross’ ever-changing story, he was eventually identified as the suspect in this assault.

Ross confessed to being the one who attacked and burned the victim.  Ross told officers that during an argument about cigarettes, he injured (dislocated) the victim’s fingers and repeatedly set fire to his face and head (the victim’s hair and beard were burned away in large patches) over an approximately 20-30 minute period.  This reportedly occurred at foot of ’C’ Street near the boardwalk.

Ross was arrested and transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked for assault with a deadly weapon (245(a)(1) PC) and torture (206 PC).  As of the time of this release, Ross remains in custody with his bail set at one million dollars.

The victim was transported by ambulance to a local hospital for treatment of his injuries.

Development in Jason Warren case?

I was in Courtroom 4 for several cases this afternoon and saw DA Maggie Fleming. Then, Mr. Glenn Brown. So, I knew something was up with the Jason Warren case.

The discussion ended up during time when the courtroom was closed for intervention and there is,a gag order on the case so all I could get was the next date is August 31.

Charles Kesselring machete wielding suspect held to answer on all charges

Charles Kesserling, the machete wielding pizza delivery van suspect had a preliminary hearing scheduled today. Mr. Glenn Brown is representing him. DDA Jackie Pizzo is now the prosecutor for the case.

Preliminary hearing was held yesterday. He was held to answer on all charges.

Kesserling is charged with seven counts: Count 1 Evading a Peace Officer with a special allegation of a prison prior; Count 2 taking a vehicle without owner's consent; Count 3 Buy/Receive stolen vehicle/Equipment; Count 4 Carjacking; Count 4 Use of a deadly weapon with a prior; Count 5 Robber with special allegation of use of a deadly weapon; Count 6 Threats to commit crimes resulting in death with a special allegation of use of a deadly weapon and Count 7 Assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm.

Previous post:

Aug 18, 2015

Paper Chaser's comment on LOCO makes a good point

Paper Chaser's comment on LOCO's medical marijuana dispensary thread sums it up. That post is not getting much action. 25 comments in two hours, upto 5 from the same user shows except the stakeholders, not much interest, especially in rules or legalization.

Shouldn't those in favor of rules and legalization be for all who qualify to open a business?

I was not at the BOS session. Around three, I saw some of the contentious discussion and response but not many in the audience. If you took away media and dispensary owners/ potential owners, the number of approximately 20 would dwindle to at least half or less. Ryan was the first to report on the vote. Then NorthCoast news.

First, CCVH, now Wonderland putting the spin in the blog comment section, one of two existing dispensaries doth protest too much methinks.

Excerpt 1:

After a long and circuitous discussion rife with questions and hypotheticals, the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors today approved a land use ordinance aimed at governing all current and future medical marijuana dispensaries in the county's unincorporated regions. The unanimous vote stands to open the door to as many as 15 dispensaries countywide, not counting the ones located in incorporated cities such as Eureka and Arcata.

Excerpt 2: 

While the move pleased the organizers behind Hummingbird Healing Center and Lost Coast Botanical, two dispensaries long waiting for the stamp of legitimacy, the board's vote occurred over the ardent objections of Luke Bruner, business manager at Garberville's Wonderland Nursery, one of just two dispensaries in the county established before the moratorium went into place.
Bruner argued -- passionately and at length -- that if the ordinance passed, Wonderland  and the Humboldt Patient Resource Center in Eureka's Myrtletown neighborhood would be deemed ineligible for a state license under Assembly Bill 266, which is currently being considered in the legislature. Over the course of the afternoon Bruner offered more grounds for objectio. For example, he suggested that banning convicted felons from obtaining permits could run afoul of principle of disparate impact to minorities and invoke the ire of the NAACP.
Bruner also warned that the ordinance would allow mega-corporations to move in and exploit local resources. And he argued that, from a purely legal standpoint, the board had changed the text of the ordinance so much that it ought to be sent back to the Planning Commission before any action was taken.
"One of the people who does not get one of these permits is going to sue you, and they’re going to win," Bruner cautioned.
Comment from Luke Bruner in the comment section:
Wonderland is fully supportive of this ordinance, and looks forward to collaborating in fixing problems with AB 266. The supervisors did a great job today. They've tackled a tough issue and done it well. The solution to the felony issue shows courage and wisdom. The same is true of the RFQ solution. They really understand the concerns of a corporate takeover and the RFQ is the right solution that takes the issue head on. The provisional license language is a big deal. Sacramento understands that the answers are found in Humboldt County, and with the leadership our Supervisors have demonstrated on cannabis, I am confident we will get it right there too! #Sameteam
From anti consumer anyone:

It sure reads like one member of a duopoly fighting to keep out competition. There must be a lot of money in wonderland to justify such passion against progress.

Response from Luke Bruner:

We're fully supportive of this. We raised the issues because they are real concerns, and the Supervisors fully addressed them. We were publicly opposed to the original ban then.

from BS:

Ryan already reported the factual story so don't try and skin it now, Luke. You fought allowing competition tooth and nail. It's the same as your CCVH strategy, block competitors by grandfathering existing growers and making new competitors endure a multi year permitting process. We know your game.

Joe Schmoo:

Luke Bruner and Kevin Jodrey are profiting off an unfair corrupt system. True carpet baggers. Came here with East Coast money. The people won today! Great job supervisors! The war on jobs is over!


Sorry, Luke. I enjoy seeing Wonderland lose. You might be a nice guy but you're involved in a company that doesn't deserve to win anything ever. I've been here since '75. there used to be a code. I saw Kevin move in and start supplying starts by the thousands to the new crews of mega-growers who blew it up to infinity. He had no clue what he was doing to the old school of mom n pops. He helped fuel the new scene of greenish and greed yet now he wants to talk about "community". He helped kill our community vibe. He's clueless. Sure, some rich people and some green newcomers think he's cool. CCVH is that same line of crap. Get an angle, keep the profits going towards the big-timers and tell us you're all about this "community". This community has morphed hard into honoring cash over sustainability and style over substance...kinda like the L.A. mentality we were proud to oppose. Kevin, Wonderland and now you just can't comprehend the damage you've done here. Please go somewhere else with your awesome "caring" "community" line.