Oct 16, 2015

"Police do get the wrong guy", "How does a person get arrested for a crime they did not commit? " What physical evidence shows that Mr. Arreaga pulled the trigger?

"When we started this trial, I emphasized the presumption of innocence," is how Ms. Heidi Holmquist started her remarks giving her closing argument in the Jason Arreaga case. " I told you the terrain of this trial would be rocky. My prediction proved to be correct."

"Police do get the wrong guy" Ms. Holmquist said that law enforcement wanted "so badly" to convict someone for the murders of Harley Hammers and Angel Tully that they were biased in their investigation.

"Mr. Curtis in his opening ignored a lot of hard facts. I want to talk to you about everything, not just facts convenient to me. What happened on September 3 was horrible and took two people's lives."

"In my opening, I told you that Mr. Arreaga is an easy person to blame."

"The bullets match the gun. What physical evidence shows that Mr. Arreaga pulled the trigger? Did you hear any evidence of blood on him? Were his fingerprints on the gun? The People have not eliminated the possibility of Shavonne Hammers' fingerprints on the gun. They didn't pick up an axe in the middle of a crime scene. They didn't take Rodney Coombs cellphone laying next to Harley hammers in his truck." She said the blood found on Jerry Bachus was not tested.

She showed an empty lockbox to the jury. "Do any of you see an imprint in here? The picture (of the lockbox Mr. Curtis showed during his opening) was taken after the gun was in the lockbox for days."

"The obvious evidence was collected, cartridges, guns but so much was lost. No one even took Shavonne Hammers up to the site where the clothes were burned."

"There is a lot of reasonable doubt," said Ms. Holmquist.

"Angie Ellers didn't remember stuff when I asked her but did when Mr. Curtis asked her. All witnesses except Jason and Carly knew each other"

"How does a person get arrested for a crime they did not commit? This case is a perfect example of that. This can happen when officers jump to conclusions and rely on unreliable evidence. This case is based on witness testimony"

"To convict Mr. Arreaga, you have to believe the testimony of Jerry Bachus beyond a reasonable doubt. Ms. Holmquist asked the exact question referring to the testimony of Shavonne Hammers and Rodney Coombs.

She then put up jury instruction number 226 about witness credibility and went over Coombs, Bachus and Shavonne Hammers testimony.

She brought up that Rodney Coombs testified to a fight between Mike Hillegeist, who is the father of Angie Ellers' children and Harley Hammers, yet the People's witnesses claimed not to remember Hillegeist being at Ellers' house where the crime occurred.

She said Coombs drove up in the middle of the incident, he was panicking. He could not remember what he told officers the day of the incident, he could not describe the gun. She quoted him, "All I seen is the gun sitting there."

She described Coombs demeanor on the stand as "frantic and aggressive. " And him saying, "This is a bunch of B.S. I feel like I am being prosecuted." Then pointing to Arreaga, Ms. Holmquist said, "It's not B.S. to him."

"Rodney knew Shavonne. He told officers shots were fired before he stopped the car. He didn;t see the shooting. This was corroborated by Detective Musson and Detective Fulton."

Bringing up Jessie Matson's testimony to challenge Coomb's credibility, Ms. Holmquist said, "She saw Rodney driving errratically. He wasn;'t going to the scene. They won't search his phone."

She said convictions are memorable and that Coombs had convictions on his record but "he won;t admit to it, I had to show him" proof.

Again quoting Coombs, "All I seen is the gun sitting there which corroborates Mr. Arreaga's testimony that the gun was sitting next to Shavonne. He showed no concern for Harley Hammmers or Angel Tully. You cannot convict based on Rodney Coombs testimony."

Then moving onto Jerry Bachus, "You can't believe anything he says. He was high and about to fight Harley. We have a person with his back to the shooter who now wants to tell you story about what happened. He has no idea what happened."

Ms. Holmquist said Bachus did not see the gun, did not see Angel Tully or Harley Hammers get shot. Ms. Holmquist did an excellent job of connecting her statements with actual testimony heard in court throughout her presentation.

"He (Bachus) had personal interest in this case. If he did not testify against Mr. Arreaga, he would not get out of jail."  Ms. Holmquist brought up that Bachus told "a completely different story on the stand then what he told law enforcement." This are questions she asked Bachus in court and the jury will remember.

"After being addicted to meth for 27 years, he says he just quit with no program, cold turkey. That's the most obvious lie. He is not emotionally involved with this case, he just cares about getting out of jail." She brought up that Bachus had an immunity agreement.

Then she said the People's last witness to incriminate Arreaga was Shavonne Hammers. Went over Judge Miles instructions about an accomplice.

"She was there for the whole ordeal from start to finish. She should have some memory, should tell details. She said she was way out of it. You saw the video, she was not out of it."

"Her memory got lot worse when I started asking her questions."

For about 15 minutes, Ms. Holmquist read Shavonne Hammers' actual testimony and her "I don't remember, I don't recall responses." It was very effective. This is a point I made in my coverage as have others who covered the trial and you can be sure the jury remembers too. I called Shavonne Hammers the weakest link in the People's case.

"I was blown away by the absurdity of her responses," said Ms. Holmquist. Quoting Shavonne Hammers, "I don't remember who burned the clothes."

"Her behavior shifted between when Mr. Curtis questioned her and myself. She can be quite an actress when she wants to be."

 Ms. Holmquist said that Shavonne Hammers got "a free ride" from law enforcement. That after her testimony against Arreaga, law enforcement gave her a hug.

Referring to Carly Michaels, "Mr. Curtis said she is motivated to help Jason. I didn't hear anything in her testimony to help Jason. She has a new boyfriend." Ms. Holmquist told the jury there was no breakup, Michaels did not visit, call or text Arrreaga. She said Michaels was willing to answer questions from both sides. Ms. Holmquist said that why would Michaels mention the first incident where Arreaga shot at Hammers feet if she wanted to help Arreaga.

"Mr. Curtis wants you to believe that part of her testimony because it is convenient to his case."

Mentioning the video of Shavonne Hammers that the jury saw, she described Shavonne Hammers as "loud, horrible, disrespectful and conniving. Mr. Curtis wants you to forget that one."

"She should know details if her story is what happened. She has interest in Jason being convicted, if she gets off, she does not have to face her family and her in-laws. She lied about using meth. She lied about Jason's confession. When you look at all the evidence, Shavonne is the one that had the motive."

"Just because her testimony is what the police want you to believe, doesn't mean it's the truth."

"Shavonne Hammers has beeen convicted by witnesses. She was hoping Jason would not testify."

"Carly wanted a mom, Shavonne wanted a daughter. It is pretty clear that Shavonne had a hold on Carly and Carly had a hold on Jason."

Reading Michael's testimony, Ms. Holmquist reminded the jury that it was Shavonne Hammers who said to get into the car, that "Jason was yelling what the fuck" and that Michaels heard Shavonne Hammers ask for help to move the body. Michaels said Shavonne Hammers was not sad.

"Carky said if Jason had confessed, she would say that. Carly said that Shavonne said hateful things about Harley after his death. Carly gave specific details." Showing an ID of Harley Hammers that was burned in such a way that it was more likely thrown into the fire with clothes than destroyed in a house fire as Shavonne Hammers claimed.

Ms. Holmquist ended with talking about her client and his decision to take the stand. "He got on the stand despite the fact that he didn't have to, to tell you what happened."

"He didn't skirt around the questions like Shavonne when they got hard. "

"His story is inconsistent with the video but he have a reason. None of the other people did that."

"They didn't bring a single witness to dispute what Mr. Arreaga told you because what he told you is the truth. He didn't have the luxury to hide behind the immunity agreement like Jerry Bachus and Shavonne Hammers."

Showing the tattoos of Angel and Harley on the arm of Harley and Shavonne Hammers 15 year old daughter and pointing to specific wouunds on the victims like the heart and groin, Ms. Holmquist said, "Ms. Hammers has the world's most old motive, jealousy."

"I ask you to write not guilty on the verdict forms, it is a weighty responsibility but this case is not to be taken lightly."

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/10/it-was-best-of-closing-arguments-it-was.html

"I don't think this is an implied malice case, it's express malice case"

Deputy District Attorney Zachary Curtis basically recapped the events and his opening argument. He went over elements of crime but very little testimony. His delivery was very clinical and precise. He did his best to triage his key witnesses whose credibility was brought into question during cross examination during the trial.

At a very crucial point in his power point presentation about two shots, he had Angie Eller's name typed instead of the victim Angel Tully and he said that and then corrected himself. He kept saying Arreaga shot Hammers and Tully but no one actually saw Arreaga shoot either victim. One witness conflicted himself about seeing the actual shooting and one person saw Arreaga with a pistol in his hand.

Mr. Curtis brought up where Jerry Bachus lied about being let in Mr. Hopkins house after the shooting and then said Bachus was not lying, "his memory was just wrong. He was hysterical. He is a drug addict. He was doing drugs that day."

While going over the elements of the crime, Mr. Curtis said, "I don't think this is an implied malice case, it's express malice case, said" but then went over the elements of express malice and how they fit the crime.

He showed photos of Angel Tully and Harley Hammers wounds. He brought up that Arreaga said he had drugs in the lockbox and then showed a photo of the gun and holster in a lockbox, saying there is an imprint of the gun but no drug scale.

Bringing up the video of Arreaga's interview with law enforcement, "Mr. Arreaga says Shavonne Hammers did the shooting, lets see what he told law enforcement." He then played some select clips.
The video is the strongest evidence the People have against Arreaga.

None of the statements he played in the inetrview included Arreaga confessing to the crime and Arreaga explained why he said what he did to law enforcement on the stand when he testified. He was afraid of snitching and afraid for his family, if he pissed Shavonne Hammers off.

Mr. Curtis acknowledged that Rodney Coombs was defensive and Ms. Holmquist was not aggressive in her cross examination yet he said Rodney Coombs memory on the stand was affected "because he was intimidated by the defense attorney." 

One of the most credible witnesses in this trial was Carly Michaels, given immunity by the DA for her testimony for the People. Mr. Curtis tore her testimony apart implying that Michaels still had feelings for Arreaga.

The fact that Mr. Curtis spent so much time discrediting Michaels and defending Shavonne Hammers, Rodney Coombs and Jerry Bachus, the key people implicating Arreaga speaks volumes about the People's case.



http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/10/it-was-best-of-closing-arguments-it-was.html

"Before you consider Shavonne Hammers testimony against the defendant, you must decide if she is an accomplice to the crime. Did she aid, participate or abet in a criminal conspiracy?

Today, before the jury heard closing arguments from Deputy District Attorney Zachary Curtis and Arreaga's attorney, Public Defender Ms. Heidi Holmquist, Judge Marilyn Miles went over jury instructions.

Other than the standard jury instructions, which included the three options the jury has to decide in this case: first degree murder, second degree murder or voluntary manslaughter, Judge Miles gave specific instructions regarding witnesses and the defendant's testimony.

Regarding Shavonne Hammers, Judge Miles instructed that if they believe that Shavonne Hammers was an accomplice, then supporting evidence was not needed. She went over some criteria regarding witness credibility. "Was the witness under mind altering substance at the time?" is one of the questions the jury gets to consider in evaluating testimony.

"Before you consider Shavonne Hammers testimony against the defendant, you must decide if she is an accomplice to the crime. Did she aid, participate or abet in a criminal conspiracy? A person can be an accomplice even if they are not prosecuted for a crime."

Judge Miles told the jury that just because Jerry Bachus was in custody when he testified, failed to appear in court and was brought to court by the issuance of a legal subpoena, that factor alone should not affect the believability of his testimony one way or the other.

"The defendant cannot be convicted on his out of court statements alone." said Judge Miles referring to the interview with law enforcement. Then she added, "If the defendant made false and misleading statements before the trial," that they could be used as an indication of guilt.

Other key statements in the instructions to the jury.

 "The People are not required to prove motive but you may consider if he had motive."

"If Shavonne Hammers fled, it is upto you to decide the importance of that fact."

"The defendant is not required to prove the other person's guilt."


Chronic Nusisance Ordinance on Eureka City Council Agenda on October 20

13. Chronic Nuisance Ordinance
Recommendation: Waive reading, read by title only and adopt Bill No. 885-C.S,
An Ordinance of the City of Eureka repealing Eureka
Municipal Code sections 130.10 through 130.11 and 132.01
through 132.02 and adding a new chapter 134 to Title XIII.

Related posts:

johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/even-linda-atkins-voted-for-chronic.html

SoHum's Most Wanted already results in one arrest

So Hum's Most Wanted poster released to media this morning. An update now with John Dustin Schaafsma being  captured.                        
 

It was the best of closing arguments, it was the worst of closing arguments, Arreaga's attorney magnificent in today's closing

After Deputy District Attorney Zachary Curtis presents his rebuttal argument Monday morning and the jury gets their final instructions from Judge Marilyn Miles, the fate of Jason Arreaga, the man charged with the murders of Harley Hammers and Angel Tully will be in the hands of 12 jurors.

Today, Mr. Curtis and Ms, Heidi Holmquist gave their closing arguments. Towards the end of her closing argument, Ms. Holmquist voice choked up and you could tell she was tearing up a bit as she appealed to the jurors that it was up to them to hold the District Attorney to what she described as the highest standard in our legal system, reasonable doubt.

Mr. Curtis basically recapped the events and his opening argument. He went over elements of crime but very little testimony. His delivery was very clinical and precise. He did his best to triage his key witnesses whose credibility was brought into question during cross examination during the trial.

Ms. Holmquist on the other hand, was emotionally powerful, raising the issue of reasonable doubt effectively, a point made several times by Judge Miles in her instructions this morning before closing arguments. As defense, she did a better job of illustrating the terrible loss of Harley Hammers and Angel Tully's lives.

Reading actual testimony and hitting on key points effectively raising reasonable doubt and pointing to Shavonne Hammers as a possible suspect, the jury was drawn to Ms. Holmquist's words and presentation as were those of us covering the trial. Ms. Holmquist decimated three of the People's key witnesses, using their own words to shred their credibility.

I will have detailed posts later on Judge Miles' jury instructions, on on Mr. Curtis' closing and on Ms. Holmquist's closing.

Here are some quotes and highlights to give you a preview:

Mr. Curtis: "I don't think this is an implied malice case, it's express malice case." Mr. Curtis said this but then went over the elements of express malice and how they fit the crime. At a very crucial point in his power point presentation, he had Angie Eller's name typed instead of the victim Angel Tully and he said that and then corrected himself.

Ms. Holmquist: When we started this trial, I emphasized the presumption of innocence. I told you the terrain would be rocky. My prediction proved to be correct."

Ms. Holmquist: Mr. Curtis in his opening ignored a lot of hard facts. I want to talk to you about everything, not just facts convenient to me. What happened on September 3 was horrible and took two people's lives."

Ms. Holmquist: "All witnesses except Jason and Carly know each other."

Quoting Rodney Coombs defensive reaction to her cross examination, "This is a bunch of B.S." Ms. Holmquist said, "This is not a bunch of B.S. to him pointing to Arreaga.

Referring to Shavonne Hammers, "Her memory got a lot worse when I started asking her questions." For about 15 minutes, Ms. Holmquist read Shavonne Hammers' actual testimony and her "I don't remember, I don;t recall responses." It was very effective. This is a point I made in my coverage as have others during the trial and you can be sure the jury remembers too.

Ms. Holmquist: "Just because her testimony is what the police want you to believe doesn't mean it's the truth."

Ms. Holmquist: "It's pretty clear that Shavonne had a hold on Carly and Carly had a hold on Jason."

Ms. Holmquist: "They didn't bring in witnesses to dispute what Mr. Arreaga told you because what he told you is the truth."


Oct 15, 2015

While waiting on her OR/bail hearing from yesterday's arraignment, Andrea Hunsucker charged in new case, possession of meth and smoking pipe

Yesterday, Andrea Hunsucker was arraigned and today while awaiting her OR/Bail hearing, she was arraigned again for a misdemeanor Count 1 possession of a controlled substance, meth. Count 2 Possession of controlled substance paraphernelia, a smoking pipe.

DDA Jackie Pizzo was present for the People. Public Defender Owen Tipps was appointed to represent Hunsucker.




Oct 14, 2015


Andrea Hunsucker arraigned today for her most recent arrest

Andrea Hunsucker, most recently arrested for possession of controlled substance and drug paraphenelia was arraigned today in Courtroom 5 on a petition to revoke probation.

Deputy District Attorney Roger Rees was present for the People. Ms. Kelly Neel with the Public Defender's office was present with Hunsucker.

A bail/OR hearing is set for tomorrow at 2 p.m., Intervention for October 29 at 3 p.m. and Revocation hearing for November 4 at 8:30 a.m.

Previous post:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/10/andrea-hunsucker-arrested-today-adds-to.html?m=1

"I have read the prosecutor's reply and I agree with one of her issues" Rodney Ortiz 995 continued at defense request

Today a disposition and reset hearing was scheduled for 2 p.m. this afternoon in the Rodney and Vincent Ortiz cases.

While the jury trial date of January 11, 2016 remains set for now, a pre trial hearing and hearing for the 995 motion for Rodney Ortiz is set for December 15.

The 995 motion hearing was continued at the request of Mr. Sanders.

He said he just recently took over the case and needs time to file an amended 995.

"I have read the prosecutor's reply and I agree with one of her issues."

DDA Jackie Pizzo is prosecuting the case. She has won every motion against the defense so far. She won the defense motion which was requesting severance in the Rodney and Vincent Ortiz cases. The Judge also ruled in her favor against the writ appealing the denial of a 995 motion for Vincent Ortiz.

There have been some other developments in the Ortiz cases. This was not stated in court. I got this information from the court computer system and did a post earlier today.

There has been an order appointing Steven L. Mock, a retired Judge from Yolo County to the Ortiz case.

Rodney Ortiz has retained a private attorney, Mr. Neal Sanders. His previous attorney, Public Defender Casey Russo had filed a motion to dismiss Counts 2 and 3, both attempted murder charges. The People are opposing that motion. This was scheduled to be heard today.

$150, 000 bail set for sexual assault suspect Markis Shirley, he mouths "wtf" in court

Markis was just arraigned in Courtroom 5. On the new felony, sexual assault charge, the bail was set at $150,000.

There is one count in the new case which is rape by force/violence and duress. PC 261 (a) 2.

He also has other cases.

DDA Brie Bennett prosecuting. Conflict Counsel's Mr. Greg Elvine-Kreis representing Shirley.

A woman was in court to support Shirley. She was admonished by bailiff for trying to talk to him. Shirley mouthed "wtf" to her later as bail was set and he was being served with a CLETS order in court.




Markis also has other pending cases with charges that include taking a vehicle without an owner's consent, driving with a suspended and revoked license and failure to provide evidence of financial responsibility.

Update:

On 10/13/15 at about 10:29 a.m., an Officer with the Eureka Police Department spotted Markis Shirley walking near the 2500 block of Union Street.  After a quick foot pursuit, Shirley was taken into custody near the 2500 block of California Street. 
Shirley was transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility and booked for sexual assault. 

Original Press Release:

On 10-4-2015, at about 0555 hours, Eureka Police Officers responded to a locale downtown motel for a report of a rape that just occurred. Investigators have developed probable cause to arrest Markis Shirley for the sexual assault. If any person has information where Shirley is located call EPD Dispatch Center at 441-4044. If any person has information about this crime please contact Detective Harpham at 441-4305.


Shirley is described as a BMA, about 6’1”, 135 lbs with black hair and brown eyes. 

Tara Marie Groswird bail set at $25,000, Ivan Chavarin at $50,000 in Fortuna incident

Tara Marie Groswird, also known as Tara McDonald, and Ivan Martinez Chavarin were arraigned in Courtroom 5 this afternoon.

Bail is $25,000 for Groswird who is represented by Public Defender Owen Tipps. $50,000 for Chavarin represented by Conflict Counsel's Greg Elvine Kreis.

Dates set on a no time basis. Intervention Oct 22, Preliminary hearing October 28.

DDA Jackie Pizzo present for the People.

Victim is Uriah Thomas Jacobs.

The charges are Count 1 assault with a firearm, in this case a sawed off shotgun. Count 1 only applies to Groswird's codefendant.

Count 2 manufacture, import, sell, posess short barreled rifle or shotgun. Both are felonies. The codefendant in the complaint is Ivan Martinez Chavarin.

Groswird also has another misdemeanor case pending against her.

Original press release and photos from Kym Kemp's site:

g2 G
On October 9th at about 5:45 PM, officers with the Fortuna Police Department responded to the 2200 block of West School Street in Fortuna after receiving a report that a male subject had entered a residence and told the resident that he was being chased by several subjects who were in possession of a firearm.
Officers arrived and learned that the 24 year old male victim had arranged to meet with friends at an apartment located in the 2600 block of School Street. Once he entered the apartment, the occupants allegedly tied him up and threatened the victim with weapons including a pistol, sawed-off shotgun, and a taser while accusing the victim of stealing drugs from the female resident. Eventually, the victim was able to flee the residence and run to the 2200 block of School Street where law enforcement was contacted by the resident.
With the information received during the course of the investigation, a search warrant was obtained for the apartment located in the 2600 block of School Street.
Just after midnight on October 10th, officers with Fortuna, Ferndale and Rio Dell Police Departments executed the search warrant. During the search, officers located evidence from the earlier incident and arrested Tara Marie Groswird, age 25 of Fortuna and Ivan Martinez-Chavarin, age 21 of Madera. The third suspect was identified as a 17 year old male of Fortuna who was later arrested by the Eureka Police Department.
Groswird was booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility on the following charges:• PC 422 – Criminal Threats
Martinez-Chavarin was booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility on the following charges:
• PC 236 – False Imprisonment• PC 417 – Exhibiting a deadly weapon
• PC 33210 – Possession of Sawed-off Shotgun• PC 23900 – Possession of a firearm with altered serial number
The 17 year old male was booked into Humboldt County Juvenile Hall on the following charges:
• PC 182(a)(1) – Conspiracy to commit a crime• PC 236 – False Imprisonment
• PC 422 – Criminal Threats• 244.5(b) – Assault with a stun gun or less lethal weapon

HCSO arrested one male in Sohum overdose incident

Story first reported by Kym Kemp
http://kymkemp.com/2015/10/13/mass-overdose-near-pepperwood-there-may-be-9-victims-two-unresponsive/

With a follow up yesterday by North Coast News.

http://ww.krcrtv.com/north-coast-news/news/suspected-mass-overdose-in-humboldt-county/35848054


According to HCSO Lt. Wayne Hanson, who just updated me via email, this is the latest in the mass overdose in Sohum.

We arrested one male subject for being under the influence of alcohol and or drugs.

Other subjects there were handled by Cal –Fire and ambulances.


Rodney Ortiz hires one of the top private attorneys, retired Judge from Yolo County assigned to Ortiz case

Today a disposition and reset hearing is scheduled for 2 p.m. this afternoon in the Rodney and Vincent Ortiz cases. A jury trial is scheduled for January 11, 2016 but both defense attorneys at the last hearing suggested that might not be set in stone.

There have been some developments since the last hearing.

There has been an order appointing Steven L. Mock, a retired Judge from Yolo County to the Ortiz case.

Rodney Ortiz has retained a private attorney, Mr. Neal Sanders. His previous attorney, Public Defender Casey Russo had filed a motion to dismiss Counts 2 and 3. The People are opposing that motion. This is scheduled to be heard today.


Sep 6, 2015

No severance for you" Defense motion to sever denied by Judge Johnson; defense quote of the day: ""Judicial economy should not trump my client's right to a fair trial."

To sever or not to sever, that was the question, Visiting Judge Arvid Johnson ruled in favor of the People and denied the motion to sever on September 4 and the Rodney and Vincent Ortiz cases remained joined. The prosecutor for this case is Deputy District Attorney Jackie Pizzo. Conflict Counsel's Mr. Greg Elvine-Kreis has been appointed to represent Vincent Ortiz. Public Defender Mr. Casey Russo has been appointed to represent Rodney Ortiz.

Only one Ortiz family member was in Courtroom 4 on Friday. Judge Johnson said, "The Court has read both the defense motions and the People's responses." He then allowed the attorneys to present oral arguments, during which, each attorney highlighted their reasons.

Mr. Russo referred to the Aranda Bruton rule and said it only applies to a confession. He cited People v Anderson where he said "statement and confession was used interchangeably. The prosecution is correct that statements are not testimonial. The DA has to get the statements in via hearsay exception." Mr. Russo then referred to People v Arceo. Unless People say they won't admit statements, we want a severance."

Mr. Elvine-Kreis said, "The two areas I am hoping the Court will focus on is association, People v Anderson. If there were separate trials, my client would be exonerated.Judge Miles agreed only one charge stands against my client. The evidence against my client is weak. Evidence against co-defendant will be used against my client by inferences."

"People are saying the jury can be asked to disregard. My client cannot get a fair trial." Then Mr. Elvine-Kreis referred to Cauldron v Superior Court. "Strong evidence against one defendant can be used to bolster a case against a weak defendant. If we have trials together, they will convict my client by inference."

Judge Johnson responded, "Even if we had separate trials, it depends on who goes first." Mr. Elvine-Kreis acknowledged that fact and that his client had a 50 % chance, then aid, "Yes. But  a 100% chance if my client goes later." Mr. Elvine-Kreis said he would file paperwork to ensure Vincent Ortiz goes after Rodney Ortiz.

Ms. Pizzo got her chance next. "Your honor, I think the only thing that makes sense is to have a joint trial. They were charged as joined  before the preliminary hearing. They are charged with the same charges against three victims. Vincent Ortiz's motion about disparity of evidence, the defense can argue whatever they like. The People's case is the same. It's like putting on two different trials when they are both charged with events happening the same day, same time, with the same charges. There is no evidence that is only going towards Mr. Rodney Ortiz."

"I ask the Court to deny the severance. Regarding Mr. Russo's Aranda Bruton motion, I 'm sure there will be numerous 402 hearings. We don;t have any statements like, "me and the co-defendant" in this case. I think there are hearsay exceptions. That is an issue for the trial Judge, not this court."

Before Judge Johnson, made his ruling, Mr. Elvine-Kreis said, "Judicial economy should not trump my client's right to a fair trial."

"The problem with one of your comments about Judge Miles," said Judge Johnson directing his remarks to Mr. Elvine-Kreis, "and I am not casting aspersions about Judge Miles' decision, is that you think Judges who have experience should try cases instead of a jury." Judge Johnson remarked on the importance of the jury in a criminal justice system, and about being judged by your peers. "That's what a good defense attorney is for. The trial judge can address the Aranda Bruton and whether the statements come in or not. I agree that judicial economy should not trump your client's right to a fair trial. There is not enough disparity to justify severance."

Then Mr. Kreis said that his client wants a date set on a no time basis, Mr. Russo said 'we will not be ready in 60 days." Ms. Pizzo said that according to PC 1050, "the Court can find good cause to continue co-defendant's case." A trial setting date and a hearing for the 995 motion is set for October 15 and a tentative jury trial date of January 11, 2016.

Fromilawdictionary.com:

In People v. Aranda, supra, 63 Cal.2d 518, 530-531 (hereafter Aranda), the California Supreme Court held that when the prosecution seeks to introduce an extrajudicial statement of one defendant that implicates a codefendant, the trial court must adopt one of three procedures:  (1) in a joint trial, effectively delete direct and indirect identifications of codefendants; (2) grant a severance of trials; or (3) if severance has been denied and effective deletion is not possible, exclude the statement.  In the absence of a holding by the United States Supreme Court, the Aranda court declared these rules were not constitutionally compelled, but judicially declared to implement the provisions for joint and separate trials of Penal Code section 1098.  (63 Cal.2d at p. 530.)
     A decision by the United States Supreme Court came three years later.  In Bruton v. United States, supra, 391 U.S. 123 [20 L.Ed.2d 476] (hereafter Bruton), the high court held that introduction of an incriminating extrajudicial statement by a codefendant violates the defendant’s right to cross-examination, even if the jury is instructed to disregard the statement in determining the defendant’s guilt or innocence.
     Aranda, supra, 63 Cal.2d 518 is now recognized as a constitutionally based doctrine, at least in part.  (People v. Mitcham (1992) 1 Cal.4th 1027, 1045.)  “To the extent Ar


Last post (with other links):

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/motion-to-sever-ortiz-cases-denied.html

Sep 4, 2015


Motion to sever Ortiz cases denied

The motion to sever the Rodney and Vincent Ortiz cases was denied by Visiting Judge Johnson.

No other media was in court. As usual, the hearing wasn't simple since Vincent Ortiz did not waive time but Rodney Ortiz has and his attorney, Public Defender Casey Russo said that they could not be ready within 60 days for  atrial. There were good arguments by all attorneys on the motion to sever, the People prevailed.

I will do a separate posts on those arguments.

The September 25 trial date was vacated and an October 15 trial date was scheduled for setting and hearing the 995 motion by a Visiting Judge in a courtroom to be assigned. A tentative date of January 11 for the jury trial is set.

Visiting Judge Arvid Johnson is subbing for Judge Timothy Cissna this week in Courtroom 4. Deputy District Attorney Jackie Pizzo is prosecuting the cases for the People. Public Defender  Casey Russo represents Rodney Ortiz and Conflict Counsel's Greg Elvine-Kreis represents Vincent Ortiz.

Last post (with background and other links):

johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/ortiz-motion-to-sever-and-995-motion.html

Sep 2, 2015


Ortiz motion to sever and 995 motion continued until Friday

This afternoon in Courtroom 4 there is a motion to sever filed in both the Rodney and Vincent Ortiz cases as well as a 995 motion for Rodney Ortiz set for September 25.

Today's hearing continued until September 4 at 2 p.m.



Aug 13, 2015


Discovery issues in Ortiz case delayed due to fire situation, Rodney Ortiz files motion to sever

Next court date is September 2 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 5 to hear Rodney Ortiz's motion to sever. And to set new jury trial date. Vincent Ortiz has still not waived time.

Visiting Judge Arvid Johnson was in Courtroom 5 today to deal with discovery issues. Deputy District Attorney Jackie Pizzo was present for the People, Public Defender Casey Russo for Rodney Ortiz and Mr. Marek Reavis subbed in for his colleague, Mr. Greg Elvine-Kreis for Vincent Ortiz.

Fire situation locally has delayed some documents being provided to the District Attorney's office. Two envelopes, one from the Mercy medical Center, were provided to Ms. Pizzo to copy and provide to both defense attorneys.


Two writs filed on behalf of Vincent Ortiz denied in August.

The procedural saga continues.

Last post :

Jul 9, 2015


Rodney and Vincent Ortiz homicide jury trial stayed while Rodney Ortiz's attorney files writ appealing 995 ruling

This afternoon at 2 p.m. Visiting Judge Bob McNatt was scheduled  to
hear the defense motion to continue for Rodney Ortiz and a trial confirmation hearing is set for both Rodney and Vincent Ortiz. Jury trial was set for July 20. That date has been vacated.

 Next court date is disposition and reset hearing on August 13 in Courtroom 2.

The motion to continue for Rodney Ortiz will also be discussed further on that date. Rodney Ortiz's attorney Mr. Casey Russo said they wanted 4 to 6 months for investigation and "further discovery".

Vincent Ortiz refused to waive time for a continuance but the stay is a "defacto waiver", at least until the next court hearing said Visiting Judge McNatt.

The father and son are charged in a Hoopa shooting that resulted in the death of Daniel Colegrove, and attempted murder charges for Francis Colegrove and Roger Surber.

Judge Philip Schafer has not yet ruled on the 995 motion to dismiss certain charges against Vincent Ortiz. A date of 7/14 to hear a motion for discovery seems to be gone from the court system.

Previous posts:

This link is to the post on the 995 motion:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/07/things-escalated-at-spur-of-moment-when.html

This link is on the last court hearing and will get you caught up with other links to the case:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/07/defense-motion-to-continue-rodney-ortiz.html

Oct 14, 2015

Preliminary hearing for man charged with 16 felonies of alleged sexual acts with child under the age of 10 continued again

The preliminary hearing scheduled for October 20 due to unavailability of defense last time was continued today at the request of the People.

The preliminary hearing was continued to October 22. Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett said the support person for the victim had another engagement on October 20th. Visiting Judge David Flinn granted the motion to continue.

Viveiros withdrew his general time waiver today.

Oct 6, 2015

Preliminary hearing for man charged with 16 felonies of alleged sexual acts with child under the age of 10 postponed

A preliminary hearing was scheduled for David Viveiros this morning. Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett is prosecuting this case. Public Defender Luke Brownfield is representing Viveiros.

Mr. Brownfield was in a multi day preliminary hearing and Mr. Kevin Robinson from the Public Defender's office appeared on his behalf and told Judge Joyce Hinrichs that the defense was requesting a continuance.

Ms. Bennett said, "the victim is upstairs and ready to proceed."

Due to schedules, the preliminary hearing was continued to October 20 at 8:30 a.m. with an intervention to confirm that date on October 19.

David Viveiros is charged with 16 counts of alleged sexual acts with a child under the age of 10 PC 288.7 (a).

Counts 1 and 2 sexual intercourse/sodomy; Count 3 oral copulation/penetration; Count 4 and 5 sexual intercourse/sodomy; Count 6 oral copulation/penetration; Count 7  and 8 also sexual intercourse/sodomy; Count 9, 12 and 15 oral  copulation/penetration; Count 10, 11, 13 and 14 sexual intercourse/sodomy and Count 16 is aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14.

All charges are the same victim.

He is charged with 16 felonies and Judge Cissna said there are "additional allegations against him which are serious felonies/strikes."


He also had a CLETS protective order served on him in court.

Andrea Hunsucker arraigned today for her most recent arrest

Andrea Hunsucker, most recently arrested for possession of controlled substance and drug paraphenelia was arraigned today in Courtroom 5 on a peition to revoke probation.

Deputy District Attorney Roger Rees was present for the People. Ms. Kelly Neel with the Public Defender's office was present with Hunsucker.

A bail/OR hearing is set for tomorrow at 2 p.m., Intervention for October 29 at 3 p.m. and Revocation hearing for November 4 at 8:30 a.m.

Previous post:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/10/andrea-hunsucker-arrested-today-adds-to.html?m=1


No third psychiatrist will be appointed for Bullock, second doctor's report in

Today a pre-trial hearing was specially set at 4 p.m. in the Gary Lee Bullock case. The purpose of the hearing was to see the status of the report by the second psychiatrist, Dr. John Chamberlain, who was supposed to evaluate Bullock. By his attorney's request last time, Bullock's personal presence has been waived for today's hearing.

 Mr. Cockrum said he did not know before today's hearing that Dr. Chamberlain had met with Bullock.

Judge Feeney said he received Dr. Chamberlain's report on October 9. He made copies for both attorneys today.

Judge Feeney said he will not be appointing a third expert as he indicated last time. He cited Section 48.47 and said that in a not guilty by insanity plea, "the Court must appoint two, may appoint a third."

The appointment of the third expert is discretionary, said Judge Feeney.

He set another pre- trial hearing for October 30 at 9:30 a.m. to give "counsel time to review the report." He indicated Mr. Cockrum would probably want to meet with Bullock about Dr. Chamberlain's report.

Judge John Feeney is the assigned trial judge for this case. Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads was present for the People. Conflict Counsel's Kaleb Cockrum is representing Bullock.

Fr. Eric Freed's twin sister, Karin, was in court.

I did this post back in November 2014 on the McNaghten rule.

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2014/11/will-fr-erics-murderer-go-for.html?m=1

Sep 30, 2015


Gary Lee Bullock trial reset for February 8 due to psychiatrist reports not being in on time

Trial confirmation and and a motion to continue the Gary Lee Bullock jury trial was scheduled for this afternoon at 4 p.m. The jury trial date for October 13, 2015 was vacated.

The People did not file an opposition but in court Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads said, "We are very much wanting this matter to proceed as soon as possible. Since we have only received one of three reports, there is good cause for continuance ."

Mr. Kaleb Cockrum represents Bullock. Only one of three court appointed psychiatrists has met with Bullock and submitted a report.

That is Dr. Ana Glezer. Dr. John Chamberlain has to yet meet with Bullock. The third expert John Greene excused himself from the case.

"As counsel well know, three court experts were appointed to evaluate Mr. Bullock," said Judge Feeney. "Only DR. Glaser has provided us with a written report. Dr. Chamberlain responded to correspondence from the Court. He anticipates the evaluation report by October 7 or 8, 2015. Dr. Greene has advised in written form and excused himself from the case. We are not in a position to proceed with the trial."

Mr. Cockrum said that Dr. Chamberlain had yet not met with Bullock. Judge Feeney said that he would "prefer to hear from Mr. Chamberlain before appointing another expert."

Ms. Eads told Judge Feeney that Fr. Eric's twin sister who was in court wished to address the court. She is "quite opposed" to the continuance.

 Mr. Cockrum objected to Ms. Karin Freed speaking at this hearing but Judge Feeney allowed her to speak.

Mr. Cockrum said that "we don't object to her speaking at sentencing in the future or at trial but we object to her speaking today."

Judge Feeney said, "I think the victim's family members have a right to be heard at various stages of proceedings." He then said to Ms. Freed, "At this time we are only addressing scheduling."

"The concerns are that the family is still in limbo.," said Ms. Freed. We would like it to move. My father is 90 years old. He would like some peace and resolution instead of these continuances draggin on. We are in limbo. We can't move further."

Due to Mr. Cockrum's schedule with two other jury trials that "are not time waived and would preempt this case" as well as court expert reports not being completed, the new trial date is February 8, 2016. Trial confirmation is January 13 at 4 p.m. in Courtroom 1.

An pre-trial, interim date for status of reports is set for October 14 at 2 p.m.

Bullock's personal appearance has been waived from court upon request by defense until the second court psychiatrist evaluation is in because they have no idea until the last minute when the experts will come see him, said Mr. Cockrum.

It was on February 10, 2015 that Bullock entered a not guilty by insanity plea, in addition to his not guilty plea.

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

There is extensive coverage on this blog on the Bullock case.


Sep 28, 2015


Another continuance filed by defense for Gary Lee Bullock jury trial

Just checked the computers. Trial confirmation this Wednesday at 2 p.m. will now include a motion by Conflict Counsel requesting a continuance.

This is the fourth continuance by the defense.

Sept 22, 2015:

A pre trial conference with a special set of 3 p.m. in Courtroom 1 was scheduled this afternoon. It was continued to tomorrow because DDA Eads was not available. DDA Issac works part time and is currently not in the office.

The last court hearing was in a closed courtroom, the one before then was open but only because it was a Visiting Judge and all that happened was the date of September 10 was continued.

The jury trial has been assigned to Judge John Feeney. The case is being prosecuted by DDAs Andrew Isaac and Stacey Eads. Conflict Counsel's Mr. Kaleb Cockrum has been appointed to represent Bullock.

Fr. Eric's sister was in court and found out just as I did around 2:35 when Judge Feeney announced it in court. She walked off upset, which I can understand, this has happened three times now.

Due to the gag order, I can understand why public and press don't know, even though these last minute changes continue in cases with gag orders but to not notify family members of victims when this is happened the third time needs to be addressed.

As I was leaving, Times-Standard reporter Tabitha Soden was walking in and I told her of the rescheduling. No other media was in court.

Sep 10, 2015


Next hearing for Gary Lee Bullock set for September 22

A special set at 3 p.m. in Courtroom 1 was scheduled this afternoon by Judge John Feeney for the Gary Lee Bullock case. The attorneys met with Judge Feeney behind closed doors.

Next date is September 22 at 3 p.m.

Last post:

Sep 2, 2015


Gary Lee Bullock continued until September 10
A pre-trial hearing was scheduled this afternoon for the Gary Lee Bullock case. The trial Judge is John Feeney. Visiting Judge Marjorie Carter is subbing in for Judge John Feeney this week.

Judge Feeney sent emails to both attorneys requesting matter be continued until next week on September 10.

Conflict Counsel's Kaleb Cockrum is representing Bullock. Deputy District Attorney Mr. Andrew Isaac and Ms. Stacey Eads are prosecuting the case for the People. Ms. Eads was present for the People on September 2.

At the last hearing, on May 7, a 3 p.m special set time for status of reports and trial setting was scheduled in Bullock case.Judge Feeney met with DDA Isaac, DDA Stacey Eads and Mr. Cockrum privately in chambers.
Then the courtroom was opened and Judge Feeney said, "I believe we are in a position to set a trial date."
He said that in Chambers, "Counsel had discussed October 12 but since that is a court holiday, that the jury trial would be set for October 13 at 8:30 a.m." Pre-trial is September 2 at 2 p.m. and Trial Confirmation is September 30 at 2 p.m.

Judson Stiglich enters plea, voluntary manslaughter charge dismissed, stipulated prison system for 6 years

A trial readiness was scheduled in the Judson Stiglich case this afternoon. Stiglich is charged with the death of Ryan Robinson, whose sister Stiglich was dating at the time of the alleged homicide. Instead it became a hearing to enter a plea for three cases.

He is not eligible to serve the jail term locally. He pleaded guilty to possession of meth as a misdemeanor in the new recent case, admitted violation of probation and in the felony case, Count 1 for voluntary manslaughter was dismissed. He plead to possession of marijuana for sale, firearm enhancement, unlawful possession of firearm, possession of stolen property, and amended new count was added for possession of a controlled substance.

The stipulated term is six years in prison.

Both, the Stiglich family and friends as well as Robinson family and friends were in court. When the plea was accepted, two of Robinson's family members sobbed.

Ryan Robinson's mother and the mother of Ryan Robinson's girlfriend and his son spoke in court today.

"I would like to say I appreciate this opportunity," said Margaret Robinson. "I didn't know the outcome to this until today. We were expecting to go to trial. The Count 1 that is being dismissed is why we are here today."

Visiting Judge David Flinn told Mrs. Robinson, "dismissal of a count by the People and plea acceptance by a Judge is not finding the person innocent. The People have a high burden of proof. This is just a determination of the outcome. Is that comfort?"

Mrs. Robinson shook her head and indicated yes.

Ryan Robinson's girlfriend's mother did not state her name. Looking at Stiglich in court, she said, "I don't  understand why he had to kill him. Why couldn't he have shot him in the leg? My grandson will not see his father."

Stiglich entered a time waiver for sentencing and an Arbuckle waiver. The case has been referred to Probation for credits and fines. Both sides will be submitting letters to the Court.

Sentencing is on December 3 at 4 p.m. in Courtroom 2.

Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads  prosecuted the case. Mr. Russ Clanton  represented Stiglich.

Before court, Mr. Clanton handed Ms. Eads a plea form so I had an idea of what was about to happen in the case.

No other media was in court.

Sep 3, 2015


Judson Stiglich jury trial set for October 19, victim's family sobs in court

Today setting for the Judson Stiglich case as well as issues that were briefly addressed at the August 28 trial assignment hearing were scheduled this afternoon in Courtroom 2. This included a motion to amend information and Stiglich being arraigned on the additional charges.  There are also two misdemeanor cases that were on calendar today that Judge Marilyn Miles referred to as related to this event.

Stiglich was arraigned on three additional counts, jury trial date set for October 19. The three additional counts are Count 6, possessing ammunition, Count 7 possession of a firearm by a felon and Count 8 possession of a controlled substance.

Mr. Russ Clanton, who is representing Stiglich, stated his objection to the amended information. "Th facts of this case remain unchanged since February" and he objected to "the timeliness of the People's filing."

Judge Miles said, "Since the trial has not been set, I don't find any prejudice and I will grant the motion."

The first amended information never got filed and therefore not granted. Judge Miles said it was the second amended information that got filed. That is the document she would sign and grant today. The document she signed would therefore be considered the first amended information.

Ryan Robinson is the victim in this case. His sister Jennifer Robinson was dating Stiglich at the time, she is a key witness and the only witness present at the alleged shooting incident. She was present in court along with her mother and a couple other family members. After the jury trial date was set, some of the Robinson family members burst into tears.

Stiglich's family, his mom and dad and friends were also present today. The situation between the two families has been very tense.

The court computer system is down so I will update with all charges when I can and when it is available.

No other media was present in court. Jury trial is October 19 at 8:30 a.m., October 16 is Trial Assignment at 8:30 a.m., Trial Readiness is October 14 at 1 p.m. in Courtroom 2 and Trial Confirmation is September 29 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 2

Aug 28, 2015


Key witness in Judson Stiglich case has medical issues, current jury trial date vacated

The jury trial for Judson Stiglich is scheduled for August 31. The People had filed a motion to amend information and a new case to revoke Stiglich's probation. Today in court, the People said they intend to file a second amended information.

Today, during trial assignment calendar, defense asked that the current jury trial date be vacated because they received additional discovery, there were new filings on amended information and a new case. Stiglich entered a time waiver, which he had previously withdrawn. Mr. Clanton said the matter "could resolve."

Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads said the People "ask that the current jury trial not be vacated, that it trail for a week. The Pople are prepared to proceed, we have new evidence." MS. Eads said that "while the matter has the potential to resolve", one of the primary witnesses has number of medical issues and is not getting better with time."

A date for setting and to address above issues is set for September 3 at 2 p.m.

No other media source was present in court for this development.

Aug 26, 2015


Judson Stiglich jury trial next Monday in question due to DA filing amended information and a petition to revoke

A trial readiness was scheduled today for the Judson Stiglich case. He is charged with the death of Ryan Robinson. At that time, Stiglich's was dating Robinson's sister.

DDA Stacey Eads is prosecuting the case. Mr. Russ Clanton is representing Stiglich. Family members for both Stiglich and Robinson families were present.

In court today, Mr. Clanton said he would be filing a motion to continue given the new petition to revoke probation that was handed to him in court and the DA's amended information on the homicide case which he just received this morning.

Both attorneys spoke with the families before court.

The matter to continue and other "matters" will be addressed at trial assignment this Friday.

No other media was present in court.

Previous post:

johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/07/motion-to-continue-filed-by-da-in.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/07/datescremain-set-for-judson-stiglich.html
(has other links in previous posts)

William Jarnaghan enters not guilty pleas at arraignment for alleged sexual charges against minor victim

Hoopa High school softball coach William Jarnaghan was arraigned on information this afternoon in Courtroom 2. Exact same charges as preliminary hearing. All counts are against a female victim under 18 years old. Counts 1,2 and 3 are felonies. Sexual penetration/Foreign object PC 289 (h). Counts 4,5 and 6 are misdemeanors. Annoying/Molest a child under 18 years. PC 647.6 (a)(1).

If convicted, Jarnaghan will have to register as a sex offender.
Jarnaghan entered not guilty pleas.

Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett is prosecuting the case. Mr. Neal Sanders is representing Jarnaghan.

Trial setting is 10/29 at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 5.

Previous posts:

http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/william-jarnaghan-former-hoopa-softball.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/william-jarnaghans-underage-victim.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/on-cross-examination-jarnaghans.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/other-than-car-there-was-one-time-on.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/09/preliminary-hearing-for-hoopa-softball.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/06/another-jarnaghan-in-news-this-one.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/06/preliminary-hearing-continued-for.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/06/hoopa-softball-coach-charged-with.html
http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2015/06/hoopasoftball-coach-and-tribal-forestry.html