Jul 23, 2016

Alleged suspect in hit and run on 6th and E street took off running

Hit and run suspect took off on foot after three vehicle collision on 6 th and E.

EPD there first, then Humboldt Bay Fire. Two patients minor injuries.

This is the newest Humboldt Bay truck which responded to incident.

Crew just arrived to fix this broken light pole.

Sanders Grooming Lounge is just what Eureka and Humboldt needs; they open August 6

Sanders Grooming Lounge and Supply will be opening on August 6 in Old Town. I was walking by and stopped in to see the owner Shay Sanders. I intend to be one of her first customers.

The business is located at 219 2nd Street in Eureka.

This is exactly what Humboldt, especially Eureka needs. Someone who has experience with all kinds of hair, latest fashions and style.

Besides haircuts, services include hair tattoos. extensions, braids, weaves.

For more information, like their facebook page or  call (707) 502-5849.

Jul 22, 2016

Mendocino Sheriff concludes 4 day marijuana eradication effort; 40397 plants eradicated, 14 persons arrested, 37 environmental damage cases alleged, 7 firearms seized

Thursday 7-21-2016 concluded a four day marijuana eradication effort that took place in the northern end of Mendocino County.   The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office would like to thank all the agencies who assisted in this operation; Officers from the Ukiah Police Department, Officers from the Willits Police Department, Officers from the Fort Bragg Police Department, Wardens and Biologist from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, members of the California National Guard Counter Drug Team, BLM Rangers, Prevention Officers with Cal Fire, Officers with the Siskiyou County Narcotics Task Force and members of the Mendocino County Major Crimes Task Force.  Each of the agencies provided much needed mutual aid resources in a cooperative effort to assist the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office.

On 7-21-2016 these officers served one search warrant in the Indian Springs area, north of Dos Rios and east of Laytonville.  This warrant service resulted in the eradication of 240 Marijuana plants and the arrest of Adrian Glass.  Glass was also arrested for possession of a butane "honey oil" lab and being armed during the commission of a felony.  Glass' bail was set at $75,000.  In the same are three "open field" eradications took place as well.  The results of those efforts include the following numbers being eradicated;  Site 1-  57 marijuana plants, Site 2- 49 marijuana plants and Site 3- 105 marijuana plants.
There were no suspects that could be connected to these three locations and at this point no arrests have been made.  These investigations are ongoing.

Also on 7-21-2016 eradication efforts continued in the burned area of the "Lodge Fire" several years earlier, in the area of the headwaters of the South Fork of the Eel River.  Two "open field' sites were eradicated with the following numbers being eradicated; Site 1- 2139 marijuana plants and Site 2- 5666 marijuana plants.
There were no suspects that could be connected to these two locations and at this point no arrests have been made.  These investigations are ongoing.

One "open field" marijuana grow site was eradicated near the Shamrock Ranch area resulting in 300 marijuana plants being eradicated. There were no suspects that could be connected to this location and at this point no arrests have been made.  This investigation is ongoing.

The final results of the four day eradication effort was;
-40397 marijuana plants being eradicated.
-14 persons arrested.
-7 firearms being seized.
-37 environmental damage cases being discovered and investigated.  These violations include; illegal water diversion, stream pollution, and solid waste violations.

Joe Kitchen filed a DV prevention order request against Marci Kitchen yesterday; she has two previous convictions for speeding; two other dismissals after fines and traffic school

Marci Kitchen, on facebook as Marci Marz (from Facebook)

Kiya Kitchen and Joe Kitchen (from Facebook)

Marci Kitchen had 4 traffic/infraction ordinances; one in 2007, one in 2008 in which she had a conviction; one in 2010 and one in 2013, another conviction for unsafe speed for driving.

2007: Traffic/Infraction; exceeding speed limit. Dismissal, traffic school. Fine $182.

2008: Infraction/Traffic; exceeding speed limit. Conviction. $158 fine.

2010: Infraction/Traffic; exceeding speed limit. Dismissal. Traffic school. Fine $318.


Cases above involved different vehicles.

She has two family law cases. One from 2007, I mentioned before "dissolution of marriage with a minor child." Other party Joe Kitchen.

And a recent July 21, 2016 filing by Joe Kitchen for a request for a domestic violence order; a DV prevention case with a minor child. He filed the DV order. The respondent was Marci Kitchen. No decision in that case, yet.

This was confirmed by family.

These two photos were sent by family to use for my blog, only. Do not use without permission.

The alleged hit and run happened on July 12.

Celebration of life of Kiya Kitchen at the River Walk Lodge on July 31; father Joe Kitchen thanks community

From Joe Kitchen's facebook page: happier days, photo of him and Kiya Kitchen.


Three candidates for retired Judge Watson's seat: Christina Allbright confirmed; also Kevin Robinson and Blair Angus?

In May, I reported on one candidate who has applied to be appointed for retired Judge Bruce Watson's seat in the Humboldt Superior Court.

Two more candidates have thrown in their hat for that position. One is Public Defender Kevin Robinson and the other Deputy County Counsel Blair Angus, according to a very reliable source of mine.

May 26, 2016

Former public defender, now private attorney, Christina Allbright has applied to be a Humboldt County judge

I have heard a lot of names about who might be running for Judge in Humboldt County, who may have applied. Some did not qualify, some are considering.

The only person confirmed is Ms. Christina Allbright, private attorney and former public defender for the County of Humboldt.

One of the more recent high profile cases that Ms. Allbright is a defense attorney is for one of the suspects in the Jesus Garcia homicide.

Disturbance that appeared to be possible domestic violence turns out to be the opposite

Walking in Old Town, I hear screams of a woman. I go towards the yelling and see a man grabbing a woman, saying "No, get back here."

This is in broad daylight near the 3rd and H Eureka bus stop.

People are calmly watching. I am deciding whether I should call 911. Turns out the woman, named Jennifer, has a doctor's appointment at Semper Virens and the male  is trying to get her there. He says this to the concerned crowd gathering.

One spectator yells, "Jerry! Jerry!"

She refuses, runs into the street, starts opening cars at Ray's auto. Keeps saying she wants to go to "SoCal."

I yell, want me to call the cops and she instantly says "no! I have a doctor's appointment."

I said, "Then go see your doctor and stop creating a scene and running around in the middle of traffic ."

City of Eureka releases press statement on release of police video requested by NCJ

During a time ofsignificant turmoil between police officers and the communities that they protect, the California Court of Appeals elected to release a video of a former Eureka police sergeant during the arrest of a minor. The availability of that dash cam video was a result of the Eureka City Council’s foresightto fund the recordingof police interactions during traffic stops and arrests. This particular video was brought to light as a result of a Eureka police officer who witnessed behavior that he felt should be reported and notified his command to the existence of the video. An Internal Affairs (IA) investigation was conducted and the sergeant ultimately separated employment from the City. Under the Eureka Mayor and City Council, the City has sought to bring additional transparency and demonstrate that the police have been and are willing to proactively address internal problems. City leadership takes very seriously the abuse of police authority and has a zero tolerance level for abuse or prejudice. The City Attorney has worked with Chief Mills and other department heads to ensure cases of misconduct once sustained are aggressively prosecuted and appropriate disciplinary action sought, up to and including termination. The case before the Court of Appeal, however, was not about transparency but about ensuring the protection of police officer personnel records. This is a right guaranteed by the California Constitution and state statutes. The City’s intent in bringing the appeal was not to quash transparency but to ensure that the right of privacy of police officers in their personnel records was not eroded. According to City Attorney Cyndy Day-Wilson “It is unfortunate that the court gave little value to the fact that the videos are prepared for the purpose of evaluating officers. Instead, it focused on the timing of initiation of the formal investigation and when the video was taken. ” Eureka has recently purchased body cameras for patrol officers and investigators to increase police accountability and collect evidence for future prosecutions. The Chief’s Advisory Panel has the duty to review Internal Affair’sinvestigations, including the review of police video, to ensure the Department is accountable for its findings. For further information on this topic, the Body Worn Camera (BWC) policy can be found on the City website for public inspection. The City will nevertheless continue leading the way in the development of body cameras and police oversight. The City is currently evaluating its options with regard to the release of the video.

CHP reiterates what they said including that their investigation found the jeep

Just spoke with CHP Public Information Officer Cy May.

"I am going to reiterate what we have said."

"Through our investigation, we discovered where the vehicle was; we attempted to make contact with the registered owner, Ms. Kitchen. We have been available. She has not contacted us directly to make a statement."

Victim in road rage shooting yesterday booked into jail for possession of heroin

On July 21, 2016, at about 7:23 p.m., officers with the Eureka Police Department responded to the report of shots fired following a traffic collision in the vicinity of I and Carson Streets.  Both involved vehicles had fled the scene prior to officer arrival.  A short time later, officers responded to Long and D Streets for the report of a wrecked vehicle and the occupant yelling that he had been shot.  When officers arrived, they located an older model Chevrolet Camaro with major front end damage and obvious damage to the driver's side door consistent with a gunshot.  The driver reportedly walked away before officers arrived.  

As officers were investigating the multiple scenes, dispatchers received notification that there was a male at St. Joseph Hospital stating he had been shot.  Officers responded to the hospital and contacted the male, later identified as Kevin Couturier, 58 of Eureka.  Couturier had a superficial injury to his left arm, however it is unclear if the injury is from the projectile shot into the vehicle or from fragments of the vehicle damaged by the gunshot.

Based on the ongoing investigation, it appears an incident occurred on I Street where a shot was fired into the white Camaro driven by Couturier.  A short distance away, Couturier intentionally rammed a blue Jeep Cherokee.  The Jeep nor its occupants have been located at this time.  This does not appear to be a random act of road rage.    

While at the hospital, Couturier was found to be in possession of about a half ounce of heroin and a shotgun shell.  Once medically cleared, Couturier was arrested and booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility for possession of heroin, felon in possession of ammunition, and probation violation.  Couturier has not fully cooperated with the investigation.

The Eureka Police Department is asking for the public's assistance in locating the second involved vehicle.  It is described as a blue, 1995 Jeep Cherokee, California license 5RSG112.  The vehicle should have moderate to major rear-end damage.  It was last seen in an alley near Lowell and C Streets, with the muffler dragging.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call Detective Sergeant Patrick O'Neill at (707) 268-5261.  

CHP mum after lawyer letter yesterday, rude dispatcher gets defensive

Called CHP this morning after no response from an email yesterday regarding the letter from the lawyers.

I get told North Coast News and KIEM did an on camera interview with the Comnander in Chief and he is no longer available. I ask for Officer May who has not been available all week. I ask to speak with anyone, no one is available and they are no longer making any comments.

Never had any problems with CHP except today for the woman who answered the phone about five minutes ago.

Yes, I raised my voice in an argument because she was uncooperative and refused to take the message she initially said or provide any answers, but so did she. I ended the conversation. And even when I calmed down, she continued to be argumentative. This was Officer May's secretary, I learned later.

She did this after I said, why is CHP available for certain media and not others?

CHP has handled the media and release of information in this Fortuna hit and run terribly. I am glad to see information being released now.

Update: Just got a call from Officer May around 12:25. I will have a post after I speak with him.

Jul 21, 2016

Ben Okin and Patrik Griego represent Marcia Kitchen, they sent a letter to CHP clarifying information

Mr. Patrik Griego and Mr. Benjamin Okin sent a letter to CHP today. They both represent Marcia Kitchen. They dispute some of the information that the CHP has told the press.

The letter states that on July 13, local attorney, Mr. Neal Sanders contacted CHP on behalf of Ms. Kitchen within 60 minutes of her returning to Humboldt from her daughter's deathbed in Oakland. They claim that call was not returned for several hours and that Mr. Sanders had to contact the CHP office again.

The letter states, "This misinformation has the potential of misleading the public.
 and unnecessarily endangering people."

At times the letter says "I" and at times "we."

Mr. Okin expresses that he is troubled by CHP insisting that they do not know where Ms. Kitchen is and reiterates that "we are available to meet with your office and the District Attorney's office to discuss this tragic case." And that their client is willing to surrender to law enforcement.

Patrik Griego

Benjamin Okin

I have updated two images of the letter.

Text of letter:

July 21, 2016

Humboldt Area CHP
Arcata, CA 95521

As you know, Attorney Patrik Griego and I represent Ms. Kitchen in the case you are currently investigating.

On Wednesday, July 13th, Attorney Neal Sanders contacted your office on my and Ms. Kitchen’s behalf within 60 minutes of her return to Humboldt County from her daughters’ death bed in Oakland.  That call was not returned for several hours prompting Mr. Sanders to again contact your office prior to the close of business. Mr. Sanders provided law enforcement with the location of the vehicle involved in the accident as well as the keys to the residence where the vehicle was located.  Mr. Sanders and I also offered to immediately surrender Ms. Kitchen to law enforcement, which CHP declined pending further investigation.

I am troubled by the nature of CHP’s continuing press releases that state that Ms. Kitchen is “in hiding” and, especially now, that that CHP asked for the public’s aid to find/contact her (and Josh Pearlston). This misinformation has the potential of misleading the public and unnecessarily endangering people. Attorney Griego and myself have been in essentially daily contact with and available to CHP since July 13. We have consistently indicated that if you desired to arrest Ms. Kitchen prior to being able to complete our preliminary investigation that we would make her immediately available for arrest. I am also aware that you had in person contact with Josh Pearlston just yesterday and chose not to detain or arrest him.

I urge your office to release information to the public confirming the foregoing facts, and dispel the notion that either Ms. Kitchen or Mr. Pearlston are “in hiding” to avoid arrest or contact with law enforcement. This is simply not true.

We remain available to meet with your office and or the District Attorney’s Office to discuss this tragic case. And our client remains willing to surrender herself to law enforcement immediately.

Non injury traffic collision with "vehicle buried in building" on 4th and Broadway

Operation Safe Streets:

Eureka Police are out with a non injury traffic collision at 4th and Broadway.  Vehicle is "buried into the building" according to the officer on scene.   Roadway reportedly clear as second involved vehicle reportedly fled the scene.

Award winning trial lawyer, local attorney Patrik Griego scores another win

Closing arguments concluded in the jury trial for Meredith Q. Bayer on July 18 and the jury deliberated for less than 24 hours and acquitted Bayer.

She was found not guilty of Count 1 hit and run with injury.

Both parties had stipulated to Count 2, driving with a suspended license.

Bayer was represented by Mr. Patrik Griego, award winning trial lawyer for California.

Jul 14, 2016

Jury trial for alleged suspect in Herrick Avenue pedestrian-vehicle collision happening now

Jury trial for Meredith Q. Bayer is currently going on in Courtroom 2. Trial Judge is Judge Marilyn Miles.

The case is being prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Carolyn Schaffer. Bayer is being represented by Mr. Patrik Griego and Mr. David Nims of the Janssen and Malloy firm.

The pedestrian was Marcus Renteria from Hoopa.

Updated Release:

The vehicle and driver from this morning's vehicle versus pedestrian traffic collision have been located.  Today at approximately 1215 hours, the involved driver contacted the California Highway Patrol to report she believed she had been involved in an early morning traffic collision on US-101 south of the Herrick Avenue Overcrossing.  Subsequent investigation by the California Highway Patrol confirmed the involved driver was 27 year old, Meredith Q. Bayer of Rio Dell, CA, and the involved vehicle a 2000 Ford Crown Victoria.  This comprehensive investigation is ongoing and more information will be released when available. 

Original Press Release:

On May 24, 2015, between the hours of midnight and 0400, a male pedestrian was struck by an Ford passenger vehicle in the southbound lanes of US-101 south of Herrick Avenue Overcrossing.  After the collision, the involved vehicle fled the scene in an unknown direction.  At approximately 0600 hours and upon daylight a citizen passerby observed a pedestrian down in the center divide just south of the Elk River Bridge.  Personnel from the California Highway Patrol - Humboldt Area responded to the scene, along with fire and ambulance personnel.  The pedestrian, whose name is being withheld pending family notification sustained fatal injuries as a result of the collision. 
The involved vehicle has been identified as a Ford passenger vehicle, possibly dark in color.  The vehicle sustained damage to the front end, hood, and possibly windshield.  The vehicle damage included broken front lighting equipment and it is missing the left side view mirror.

Now, that's only the second earthquake I really felt

Yeah, I felt that earthquake!

Thomas Kane represented by Benjamin Okin, plead guilty today in the hit and run death of Gabe Jackson

I have not been posting on this case because there have just continuances since arraignment which was on June 8, 2015. Today, yet another disposition and reset hearing for Thomas Kane at 2 p.m. Instead he plead guilty; sentencing is scheduled for August 31.

Kym Kemp beat me to posting on this, kudos Kym, but the Fortuna hit and run case took precedence.

In December Mr. Benjamin Okin took this case over from MS. Kathleen Bryson. Mr. Okin is also representing Kade Chandler and a suspect in the recent Fortuna hit and run case.

Nov 6, 2015

Yet another disposition and reset hearing scheduled for Thomas Kane charged with the death of Gabe Jackson

A  disposition and reset hearing was scheduled for this afternoon in the Thomas Kane case. Once again, a disposition and reset was scheduled for January 26, 2015.

Marci Kitchen's boyfriend Joshua Pearlston, any relation to local attorney Mel Pearlston?

So, after media pressure, some names are released. 

There were comments Marcia Kitchen's boyfriend, Josh, was the son of a local lawyer.

Mel Pearlston is a local lawyer. If he is watching out for Joshua, and if Joshua is his son, would make sense why Mr. Benjamin Okin would be a lawyer for another party.

How many of the other rumors are fact?


Checked the court computer today and there is a case of "dissolution with child" between M. Kitchen and J. Kitchen.

A myrelatives.com site lists a Joshua W. Pearlston as a relative of Mel Pearlston.
I also have verification from other sources that he is Mel Peterson's son.

Marcia Kitchen, facebook name Marci Marz.

UPDATE: The California Highway Patrol (CHP), Humboldt Area, has worked diligently to identify the driver of the gray 2014 Jeep Wrangler which was involved in last week’s fatal hit and run traffic collision in Fortuna, on July 12, 2016.  After the execution of a search warrant, the Jeep was recovered by CHP investigators on Wednesday, July 13, 2016.  The Jeep was located in a fenced backyard, behind a gate, at the registered owner’s home.  Investigators have made multiple attempts to contact Ms. Marcia Maelinda Kitchen, the registered owner of the Jeep, and her boyfriend, Mr. Joshua Wren Pearlston, for questioning.  Upon the CHP locating the Jeep, Ms. Kitchen’s attorney contacted the CHP to help facilitate her questioning.  At this time, Ms. Kitchen and Mr. Pearlston have not made themselves available to investigators and their whereabouts are unknown.  The CHP is asking for the public’s assistance in locating Ms. Kitchen and Mr. Pearlston as they are parties of interest in this investigation.  As a reminder to the public, the CHP may file criminal charges on anyone who has provided aid in hiding or concealing evidence in this case.  We ask the public to please be patient with us as this investigation continues to unfold; this is a very complex case and we have to be thorough to ensure those who are responsible are held accountable for their crimes.  CHP investigators have been working day and night to bring this investigation to a close and we appreciate the public’s assistance and support.

*****Anyone with information regarding this investigation should contact the Humboldt Area CHP office at 707-822-5981 during business hours or the Humboldt Communications Center at 707-268-2000 after business hours.*****


Hit and Run Fatality Collision on Eel River Drive

Fortuna, California-  On the evening of Tuesday, July 12, two female teenage pedestrians sustained fatal injuries after being struck by a passing Light Gray colored Jeep vehicle.

At approximately 9:16 p.m., an unknown driver was driving a light gray colored, newer model Jeep type vehicle southbound on Eel River Drive, s/of Kenmar Road at an unknown speed.  Two young female teenagers were skateboarding northbound in the southbound lane of Eel River Drive, s/of Kenmar Road.  For unknown reasons the Jeep struck the teenagers.  The Jeep fled the scene and was last seen heading eastbound on Drake Hill Road.  One teenager was pronounced deceased at the scene and the other was transported by ambulance to Redwood Memorial Hospital for major injuries before being flown to the Oakland Children’s Hospital.  On July 13, 2016, at 0630 hours, the second girl succumbed to her injuries and passed away at Oakland Children’s Hospital. 

The California Highway Patrol-Humboldt Area responded to the scene and is conducting the investigation.  Several Fortuna Police Officers were first responder.  Personnel from Fortuna Volunteer Fire Department, City Ambulance of Eureka, and Humboldt County Coroner’s Office responded to the scene.

Sgt. Campbell is the scene manager and Officer Adams will be handling the investigation

The suspect vehicle should have moderate to major front end and driver side damage.

"No kid self harms and throws up to put up a show. I am only 14 years old. No one should have to deal with this."

The case against, Dale Standridge, a local Jehovah's witness elder for sexual conduct with minor, was dismissed this morning by the People due to "insufficient admissible evidence to prove the case against a reasonable doubt."

The victim's father James (I am not publishing the last name) and the 14 year victim spoke in court and made statements to Standridge, who listened quietly. Both Standridge and the victim had family members and supporters present in court.

The daughter stood by her father with Ms. Eads standing next to her in support. When she spoke and broke down, her father put his arm around her.

"I appreciate the District Attorney's efforts in this case," said James. "Since this happened a long time ago, there is no physical evidence. It is her word against his. As you can tell, I 'm very upset about this. I understand that my daughter has the ability and potential to refile or be a corroborating witness."

"I completely and firmly believe in this man's guilt. My daughter has not been the same since this happened. This happened when she was 3-4 years old until she was 7 or 8. She did not tell us until she was twelve."

Jury trial for former Miss Hoopa, Kayla Brown, confirmed; case may still resolve if negotiations are successful

A setting was scheduled today for Kayla Brown, former Miss Hoopa in Courtroom 5.

Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett was present for the People. Ms. Kelly Neel appeared on behalf of Brown's attorney, Mr. Ben McLaughlin.

Trial confirmation is on October 3 at 2 p.m. Jury Trial is October 17 at 8:30 a.m.

There are still negotiations about offers going on between the two parties.

un 24, 2016

Jury trial for former Miss Hoopa charged with four counts of alleged abuse including abnormal sexual interest in children vacated

Jury trial date scheduled for June 27 for former Miss Hoopa, Kayla Brown's, case, was vacated today at trial assignment. A future date for setting has been scheduled for July 20.

There has been an offer made in the case and so there is a possibility that the case may resolve.

Jury trial confirmed for David Viveiros charged with sex/sodomy and oral copulation/penetration and aggravated sexual assault of a minor

A pre-trial hearing was scheduled for David Viveiros yesterday in Courtroom 5. Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads and Public Defender Ms. Meagan O' Connell confirmed the jury trial for September 16.

Ms. O'Connell was appearing on behalf of her colleague, Mr. Luke Brownfield. She said there were no "expert availability issues" that she had been made aware of by Mr. Brownfield.

A trial confirmation date is set for August 24.

Apr 23, 2016

Yet another defense request continuance for David Viveiros charged with sex/sodomy and oral copulation/penetration and aggravated sexual assault of a minor

A disposition and reset hearing was scheduled April 19 for David Viveiros. It was continued at the defense request and the new date for another disposition and reset is May 17.

Speculation and rumors rife in Fortuna hit and run; do these two men have any involvement?

Speculation has been rife in the Fortuna hit and run case and will continue because those in the know will not release any information, and the case now goes into the second week.

I have had some information since last Thursday and have not printed it because I have not been able to verify that information or have someone willing to go on record. I do have verification from sources about two men who know Marci Kitchen, but no verification of their involvement with the incident other than that they know Kitchen.

Rumors about the possible suspect having an overdose and/or mental breakdown are just that; rumors at this point. Rumors that a man involved with Kitchen in some way and this incident has a dad who is a local lawyer, have not been verified.

The name "Josh" has been mentioned as the boyfriend of Marci Kitchen; there has been talk of a "Kyle" a Fortuna High graduate,a live-in, with Marci Kitchen.

If any of these people are witnesses or not, they should have been interviewed by now. Even if it is an ongoing investigation, why has no new information, even without names been released?

Listed below is a link to the 911 call on Kym Kemp's site

North Coast Journal prevails over City of Eureka regarding request of police release video

Eureka City Attorney Cyndi Day Wilson did respond to my inquiry that she would be getting back to me later today.

Read full article at http://www.metnews.com/

Police Video of Arrest Held Subject to Public Disclosure


The City of Eureka must disclose police video of an arrest that led to a claim that excessive force was used against a juvenile, the First District Court of Appeal has ruled.
Div. Five held late Tuesday that the video captured by a patrol car’s dashboard camera was not a confidential “personnel record,” and that Humboldt Superior Court Judge Christopher G. Wilson, who ordered the disclosure, did not have to follow statutory requirements governing discovery of police personnel files.

Case against local Jehovah's witness elder for sexual conduct with minor dismissed

Dale Standridge's preliminary hearing was scheduled for this morning.

Instead, the case was dismissed against him because of "insufficient admissible evidence to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt," according to Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads.

The victim and her father made two powerful and emotional statements as is their right under Marcy's law.

The victims said in court, "The worst thing is that I cannot get up in court and tell him." She said she wanted Standridge to know she was not scared.

Standridge's court appointed public defender, Ms. Kelly Neel, at the end, made the statement sayin the case against her client was dismissed and yet he had to sit in court and "have his character assassinated" without a chance to respond.

Jul 20, 2016

EPD releases photos of suspect sought in armed robbery of E street bank

On July 20, 2016, at about 2:58 p.m., officers with the Eureka Police Department responded to a bank on the 2800 block of E Street in Eureka for the report of an armed robbery that had just occurred.  

The bank teller told officers that the suspect stated that he had a weapon and demanded money.  The suspect lifted his clothing to display a handgun, which was located in the waistband of his pants.  

The suspect fled out the north door of the bank with an undisclosed amount of money.  The suspect is described as a white male adult, about 5'10', think build, and a close cut beard.  He was further described as wearing light colored pants, a gray hoodie with print on the front, black baseball camp with logo, and square framed sunglasses.

Anyone with information regarding this robbery is urged to call Detective Sergeant Patrick O'Neill at (707) 268-5261.  

Mckinleyville resident Andrew Barnes Jr arrested for alleged armed robbery in Arcata

On March 18th 2016, at approximately 5:44 am, an armed robbery occurred at the Alliance 76 gas station located in the 2200 block of Alliance Road in Arcata. Two masked men entered the store and brandished a handgun then fled on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash. APD Officers searched the area but were unable to locate the suspects. The scene was processed for evidence and latent fingerprints were lifted from the cash register.

In July of 2016, APD investigators received the results of a latent fingerprint comparison from fingerprints lifted at the scene which had been submitted to the California Department of Justice for analysis. The fingerprints identified one of the suspects as 27 year old McKinleyville resident Andrew Arthur Barnes Jr. Barnes had been in custody at the Humboldt County Correctional Facility on robbery charges stemming from a local robbery case and was suspected of being involved in a string of robberies around the county at the time.

Barnes was booked by APD on the following fresh charges:

PC 211: Robbery

PC 182(a)(1): Conspiracy

This investigation remains active and APD requests anyone with information to contact APD at 707-822-2428.

Armed bank robbery on E street, help EPD find this guy

Photos of suspect are in an updated post and one of those is pictured below:

Captain Steve Watson's tweets:

Armed bank robbery reported on 2800 Blk of E Street 5 ago.  Suspect described as male, 35, 6', med build, Blk hair, short dark beard /goatee

Suspect last seen wearing black square sunglasses, light gray hooded sweatshirt.

Black handgun seen in waistband.  These are preliminary unconfirmed descriptions at this time..EPD now has one detained. Still investigating.

Latest tweet @4:02:

@SWatsonEPD @Eureka_Police The robbery suspect is still outstanding.  An uninvolved male was arrested on unrelated charges.

Captain Steve Watson (pictured above)

Pizza machete wielding suspect Charles Kesselring sentenced to 15 + years, 9 years for carjacking

Charles Kesselring was sentenced yesterday to 15 years, 8 months, by Judge Marilyn Miles.

The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Jackie Harkness. Kesselring was represented by Ms. Christina Allbright.

The following information is from the court computer,document:

The biggest sentence was for Count 4 carjacking with a special allegation that he used a machete, a deadly and dangerous weapon during the alleged commission of the offense,  9 years,  Count 1 Evading a Police Officer with willful disregard, 8 months ; Count 2 unlawful driving or taking of a vehicle 8 months ; Count 5 second degree robbery with special allegation of using a machete; 1 year

For two special allegations above, he received an additional 4 months, each . And he received 1 year for two of his three prior convictions.

 Count 6 Criminal threats with the machete special allegation 8 months (stayed); Count 7 Assault with a deadly weapon 1 year (stayed).

Jun 8, 2016

Pizza machete wielding suspect found guilty on all counts, except 1

Jury found Charles Kesselring guilty on all counts except Count 3, and found all special allegations true.

Verdict came in right at noon.

Kesselring is charged with Count 1 Evading a Police Officer with willful disregard; Count 2 unlawful driving or taking of a vehicle; Count 3 Receiving Stolen Property/Vehicle; Count 4 Carjacking with a special allegation that he used a machete, a deadly and dangerous weapon during the alleged commission of the offense; Count 5 second degree robbery with special allegation of using a machete; Count 6 Criminal threats with the machete special allegation; Count 7 Assault with a deadly weapon and three prior conviction special allegations.

1477 marijuana plants, 400 pounds of processed marijuana and five arrests; possible charges of illegal grading and water diversion and solid waste issues

On 7-18-2016 around 10:37 AM deputies of the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office, Wardens from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, members of the California National Guard Counter Drug Team, BLM Rangers, Prevention Officers with Cal Fire, and members of the Mendocino County Major Crimes Task Force served a search warrant in the 4300 Block of Cahto Peak Road, in Laytonville.  This warrant resulted in the seizure of 1477 growing marijuana plants, 400 pounds of processed marijuana, and the arrests of five persons; Jonathan Marker, Johnny Bassett, Dakota Paolito, Sean Hogen, and Marina Connel.  All parties were arrested and booked into the County Jail on charges of marijuana cultivation and possession of marijuana for sale. Bail on all persons was set at $25,000.00.

Wardens of the Department of Fish and Wildife are also investigating possible charges of illegal water diversion, solid waste issues, and illegal grading.

701 marijuana plants, 3 firearms, and five arrests; possible charges of illegal water diversion, solid waste and illegal grading being explored

Around 10:31 AM deputies of the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office, Wardens from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, members of the California National Guard Counter Drug Team, BLM Rangers, Prevention Officers with Cal Fire, and members of the Mendocino County Major Crimes Task Force served a search warrant in the 8700 Block of Branscomb Road, in Laytonville.  This warrant resulted in the seizure of 701 marijuana plants, 3 firearms, and the arrests of five persons; Julie Bailey, Dru Bailey, Eric Bailey, Steven Colombo, and Cacidy Bailey.  All parties were arrested and booked into the County Jail on charges of marijuana cultivation and possession of marijuana for sale. Suspects Eric Bailey and Dru Bailey were also charged with being prohibited persons in possession of firearms.  Bail on all persons was set at $25,000.00.

Wardens of the Department of Fish and Wildife are also investigating possible charges of illegal water diversion, solid waste issues, and illegal grading.

Jul 19, 2016

I'd say that the driver has signed themself into a mental health facility under a doctor's care ("diminished capacity, complete breakdown", what-have-you ploy."

A regular reader's theory on the Fortuna hit and run suspect. This is a comment, which I am reposting.

"Reading between the lines of what has been said (both officially, and in comments on your previous post) I'd say that the driver has signed themself into a mental health facility under a doctor's care ("diminished capacity, complete breakdown", what-have-you ploy.
The CHP or other law enforcement probably can't take her/him into custody
until the doctor says she/he is capable of being released from medical care. 
To be followed by a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity as the driver has no knowledge or memory of what happened.
The vehicle parked at the driver's residence would make sense (for that plea), drove home, no idea of what happened on the way home. "I must have blacked out" the mother said, looking weak and drawn. "I don't know", she kept repeating, then breaking down in tears and crying even though she had been given sedatives/tranquilizers.
A good attorney would have not asked what happened, he/she would have suggested what might have seem to happen: (going home, remembering nothing) and that everything she/he had been told happened was to much to bear, she/he couldn't cope. Then the attorney could have asked: "What do you remember?"
Every person has the right to an attorney and a fair trial. Let's hope the deceased also are given a fair trial and that the driver doesn't get a
"Get out of jail free" card verdict. If I lived in Eureka I'd love to follow the trial in person...I've served on juries (all small time stuff) at the old Hoopa Justice Court. Very different stories from the mundane accounts the Times-Standard or tv news provide. 
Glad you're following up... "

Community concern grows due to lack of information on Fortuna hit and run suspect

On a daily basis, readers and community members email and call me flabbergasted why it is taking so long to get information on the alleged suspect. The concerns and questions in this post are from various people.

The suspect's lawyer made a statement to other media after I broke the news that he was representing the suspect.


I did not get that information from him nor have I pressed him for any. He is doing his job for his client, as he should be.

We had an informal chat today. Nothing that is new information about the case, just a chat about semantics and people's reaction.

He asked me why I used the word  "hiding" and I explained why.

I also told him CHP disputes his claim that they know where the alleged suspect is; I also said that I can understand people's concerns.

Someone fled the scene, then has apparently disappeared and will only communicate through a lawyer. It has been a week and people have a right to question why the lack of information and their perception that this alleged suspect(s) is being treated differently.

Has any other alleged DUI or hit and run suspect been given such consideration.

Something does not add up. The alleged suspect(s) have only themselves to blame for the speculation.

Previous posts:



Joshua Keyes guilty plea against him shows strength of District Attorney case against him

Press Release:
District Attorney Maggie Fleming announced today (July 19, 2016) that Joshua Keyes, 34, of Eureka, pled guilty to one count of attempted robbery, one count of robbery, and admitted a prior strike conviction from 2001 for residential burglary. He was sentenced to 9 years and 4 months in prison. He will be required to serve 85% of the term before release.
The attempted robbery occurred on February 10, 2016. On that date, Joshua Keyes attempted to rob someone near McCullens and Rudy streets in Eureka. Mr. Keyes approached the victim while brandishing a firearm and ordered him to give him money. Mr. Keyes struck the victim in the head with the firearm when the latter did not comply. Mr. Keyes then fled the scene, dropping his cell phone behind him. Detective Harpham of the Eureka Police Department used the contents of that cell phone to determine a suspect in the crime, and the victim subsequently identified Mr. Keyes as the attacker from a photo lineup.
The robbery occurred on February 18, 2016 in McKinleyville. On that date, Mr. Keyes entered another victim’s home and took money, a firearm, a cell phone, and surveillance equipment. The victim was home at the time. Having previously met Mr. Keyes, the victim was able to identify him for law enforcement. The investigation was handled by the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Department.

May 7, 2016

Five days before his preliminary hearing, Joshua Keyes requests a Marsden hearing

Joshua Keyes requested a Marsden hearing on May 6, five days before his preliminary hearing. Conflict Counsel is representing him.

At 11 a.m. Judge Hinrichs closed the courtroom for this hearing. Keyes' Marsden motion was denied. His preliminary hearing  remains scheduled for May 11.

May 4, 2016

Preliminary hearing for Joshua Keyes, the man arrested while gambling at the casino, continued until May 11

A preliminary hearing  scheduled for Joshua Keyes on April 28 was continued until May 11..

Mar 5, 2016

With his bail now up another $25,000 and charges in another case, Joshua Keyes whispers, "I pick you. I love you" to a woman in court

Joshua Keyes, who had just been arraigned on Thursday, was back in Courtroom 5, again on Thursday. While waiting for his case to be called, he kept glancing in the direction I was sitting, making goofy faces and smiling once or twice.

Keyes was arraigned for another case. Two felonies and one misdemeanor were alleged in the complaint. Bail was set at $25,000.

Count 1, first degree residential burglary, with five special allegations that he failed to remain free from custody from the required time; one other special allegation that he had a prior conviction of a serious and violent felony; Count 2 possession of firearm by a felon with same special allegations; Count 3 was a misdemeanor, possession of a controlled substance.

Dates were set on a no time waiver basis. This time Mr. Owen Tipps asked for a date for confirmation of counsel which will be March 8 at 2 p.m. Intervention March 10. Preliminary hearing March 17.

Just as I thought, he was off his rocker, his behavior finally made sense when he left the courtroom.
He whispered to a woman sitting behind me, "I pick you. I love you."

Mar 3, 2016

Joshua Keyes, the man gambling at casino arrested yesterday had previous felony warrant for concentrated marijuana possession; arraigned today

Joshua Keyes was arraigned on a felony, petition to revoke his post release community supervision, in Courtroom 5 this afternoon. Deputy District Attorney David Christensen was present for the People. The Public Defender's office was appointed to represent Keyes.

Intervention is on March 11. Hearing is on March 16.

HCSO Press Release:

On Wednesday, March 2, 2016 at about 7:30 p.m. Humboldt County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to the Cher-ae Heights Casino for a report of wanted person, 34 year old Joshua Reed Keyes. Keyes was said to be gambling at the casino. Keyes is wanted for armed robbery and a felony parole warrant. Deputies arrived on scene and located Keyes. Keyes initially attempted to pull away from deputies to flee. Deputies were able to apprehend Keyes and handcuffed him without further protests. Neither Keyes nor deputies were injured during the arrest.
Deputies located 9 grams of suspected methamphetamine on Keyes’ person. A silver jaguar was later located in the parking lot by deputies. The keys to the silver jaguar were located in Keyes’ possession.
Keyes was taken to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked for robbery and his felony parole warrant. He is not eligible for bail.

Previous (2/19/16):
On Thursday, February 18, 2016 at approximately 4:00 a.m. Humboldt County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to the 2300 block of McKinleyville Ave, for a report of an armed robbery. When deputies arrived on scene they spoke with a male and female victim. The female victim stated two male suspects forced entry into her residence and held her at gunpoint and stole her purse and jewelry. The male victim believed the suspects took an assault rifle and processed marijuana from his 215 grow. The suspects then left the residence and the victims were unharmed. The suspects are considered armed and dangerous.
Suspect #1 is described as a white male adult, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, a dark scarf over his mouth and nose, and blue jeans. Suspect #2 is described as a white male adult, tall in stature, heavy build, wearing a dark colored hooded sweatshirt with a “white bandana” print on the chest, and dark colored shorts. The suspect’s vehicle may be a white Jaguar.
Arcata Police Dept. Press Release:

On 8/12/2013 at about 8:45pm, an officer with the Arcata Police Department conducted a traffic enforcement stop in the 500 block of K Street.

The driver of the vehicle, identified as McKinleyville resident Joshua Reid Keyes (age 31), was taken into custody for an outstanding felony warrant for the possession of concentrated cannabis.   A search of Keyes’ vehicle and it’s occupants, which included two subject’s on probation for drug related offenses, yielded five pounds of marijuana packaged into separate one pound increments.

Keyes was transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked for H&S 11360 - Transportation of marijuana and H&S 11359 - Possession for sales of marijuana.