Sunday, September 30, 2007

Blogger Play - a lighter note

Source: snagged off Blogger Play (it takes you to the site that posted it.)

If you have a little spare time, check out Blogger Play
It show you the pictures that bloggers around the world are uploading in real time. "Fun, often beautiful, but above all, compelling." "Mesmerizing."

Then there's this one showing an approaching sand storm, from scribd.

They upgraded it and "Today we’re letting you take Blogger Play with you to your iGoogle homepage with the Blogger Play Google Gadget/"

Friday, September 28, 2007

The Respondent's REPLY BRIEF

a 57 page pdf file

Gallegos vs Pacific Lumber Company, et al
Case No. A112028
(Humboldt Superior Court No. DR030070
August 31, 2007

Note: Links to all four documents relating to the APPEAL are now in order in the sidebar under the MUST READ section.

Thank You, Dr. Ken Miller.

"A little pot never hurt anybody, except the landlords house." comments "Smarty Marty" on the Times Standard's article Marijuana grow to blame for house going up in smoke

"...there were five Proposition 215 recommendations tacked to the wall. And at least one of them was signed by none other than Ken Miller. He likes to hold others accountable, but there will be no one to hold him accountable for the damage here.
Photo Source: Humboldt Review - Click on photo to enlarge
For a more complete story, check out Kevin Hoover's Humboldt Review

...The tenant, Cody Nehring, said that the grow was a “cooperative” for five medical marijuana patients. Indeed, five Prop 215 certifications were posted on the living room wall, one with Nehring’s name on it. The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office reportedly will not charge the occupants with anything, as they were duly covered by Prop 215.

Nehring insists that the marijuana was for medical use. He had no explanation for the case of butane in the corner of the dining room. Butane is commonly used to extract THC-laden resin from marijuana, creating hash oil. “I don’t know about that,” Nehring said. Arcata Fire Chief John McFarland said the cases of butane could have easily killed firefighters, tenants and even neighbors, had the fire reached it. There was another box containing hundreds of of spent nitrous oxide cylinders nearby.

Though one room contained children’s toys along with grow equipment, Nehring said the house was not occupied – that it was entirely dedicated to growing. Dr. Ken Miller, who issued Nehring’s 215 Certification, said he regretted the fire. He wouldn’t say what fee he charges for the certifications, only that it was under $150...

The other pot doc whose 215 prescription is shown in the photo above is Hany Assad, owner of Norcal Healthcare Systems Inc. - the one Helen Sanderson wrote about in this story Pot doc's checkered past catches up - A SPECIAL INVESTIGATION. There's plenty of blame to go around here.


D. Consider Policy Issues and Alternative Land Use Regulatory Strategies for “Grow Houses” and Medical Marijuana Clinics.

Council, Planning Commission and staff have regularly heard complaints about “marijuana grow houses” converting single family residences to indoor nurseries in residential neighborhoods, and their impacts to adjoining properties, the neighborhood and the buildings themselves. In addition, the City of Arcata has allowed Medical Cannabis Dispensaries in the Commercial and Central Business District Zones and has recently seen an increase in the number and interest in siting more of these facilities, and consideration should be given to regulating or limiting the number of these facilities. The intent of this discussion is for the Council to provide staff with direction for subsequent work in Ordinances. Actual standards and/or Ordinances would be brought back at a later date.

RECOMMENDATION: 1) Determine the need to regulate Medical Marijuana Clinics and “Marijuana Grow Houses” through the Land Use and Development Guide [LUDG] and the upcoming Land Use Code; 2) Provide direction to staff by: (a) Confirming that personal medical marijuana “grows” in residential zones would only be allowed as an “accessory use”, subject to specified standards, as part of “compassionate use”; (b) Establish direction for the most restrictive standards for “personal marijuana grows” as accessory to residential use; (c) Confirming the Commercial and Central Business District Zones as the appropriate land use designations for Medical Marijuana Clinics; (d) Capping the number of Medical Marijuana Clinics at 4; and (e) Providing any necessary siting criteria for “replacement” Medical Marijuana Clinics; and 3) Direct that specific standards be developed and include in the Planning Commission recommendations and the Council review of the DRAFT Land Use Code.
COUNCIL CHAMBERS, 736 F Street, Arcata - Wednesday, October 3, 2007 6:00 P. M.

As Kevin reports: In Arcata, neighbors and police have become increasingly concerned about the proliferation of grow houses. Apart from the danger of fire, there have also been home invasion robberies with violence. In subdivisions where the houses look alike (especially at night) neighbors are concerned about robbers getting houses mixed up. Oh, and that smell.

But an entirely new and unanticipated phenomenon has cropped up, so to speak: neighborhoods going silent. In some areas of town, homes which used to house students have now been converted to indoor gardens. Humboldt State University has become concerned about already-limited student housing drying up. Further, controversial new subdivisions have been proposed, some on agricultural land, and an unresolved question is how many of the new houses would wind up as grows.

TS Fire chief frustrated with 215 grows in rental homes
TS Council to take next step toward regulating grow houses 10/16/07
ARCATA -- The City Council is expected to take the next step Wednesday toward reining in the city's marijuana grow houses under some kind of oversight and regulation.
The council took the first steps at its Oct. 3 meeting, when it decided to form a task force to make recommendations on how to use land use standards to control the locations, sizes and operations of the city's grow houses.
"I'm flying. This is the best thing that has ever happened," said Ken Miller, a member of the Humboldt Watershed Council, and a longtime opponent of PL, in a phone interview Tuesday. "My god, finally we have a champion who has some power."
Gallegos takes on PL Talking here about Gallegos filing his lawsuit against Pacific Lumber Company, as in other interviews at the time, Miller professed surprise - but later it was revealed that he was heavily involved in drafting the suit itself.

"When we awaken to the potential for determining our destiny, and start fielding strong candidates aggressively, we can increase voter participation. The anti-recall campaign IS just such an organizing opportunity to develop an electoral constituency, a machine, if you will, to get our perspective into the power structure."


from the AEB listserve

Update: Mad River Dog Case

ER Mad River dog trial ends
John and Stacy Malcolm found not guilty on all charges.
The verdict came on the heels of a motion for mistrial filed by Trinity County Deputy District Attorney Eric Heryford, after he learned early Thursday that the Malcolms’ defense attorney, Timothy Noal Gray, had failed to disclose to the court that he was currently representing Bugenig in a civil case against Humboldt County Public Guardian Ramon Herrera.

Both Bugenig and Herrera testified during the trial — Bugenig for the defense and Herrera for the prosecution.

Heryford said Trinity County Superior Court Judge Anthony Edwards denied the motion, but was in the process of forming an instruction to the jury to disclose the information when the jury returned with its verdict.

Complete list of related stories.

Gallegos' Reply Brief

a 36 page pdf file

Gallegos vs Pacific Lumber Company, et al
Case No. A112028
(Humboldt Superior Court No. DR030070
September 20, 2007 (or September 24)

End of the Palco Suit

a 24 page pdf file

Gallegos vs Pacific Lumber Company, Scotia pacific Holding Company, Salmon Creek Corporation and Does 1 through 10
Case No. DR030070
June 14, 2005

This is what Gallegos is appealing, and it is an interesting and entertaining read.

Press Conference - CHP involved shooting

A Press Conference is being called by the District Attorney, Paul Gallegos, and the Chief Investigator, Michael Hislop to discuss the recent CHP Involved Shooting that occurred outside of Blue Lake.

The Press Conference will take place today, Friday, September 28th @ 1:15PM at the District Attorney's Law Library, on the 4th Floor of the Courthouse Building, 825 5th Street, Eureka.
TS Investigators discuss CHP shooting
The head of the investigation into the shooting of a man after a pursuit near Blue Lake by the California Highway Patrol held a press conference today to talk about the status of the case.
District Attorney Chief Investigator Mike Hislop said the investigation into the shooting of Rodney Bartow Jr., 54, by 10-year CHP Officer Jeff Goodwin Sunday was progressing but they're still looking for witnesses before sending the report to the district attorney for charges.

Hislop did say that after preliminary findings Bartow may be facing charges of evading a police officer, assault with a deadly weapon, felon in possession of a firearm, felon in possession of a concealed firearm, possession of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance for sale, transportation of a controlled substance, driving under the influence.

Hislop said investigators are still looking for witnesses, two in particular, a woman who was in line at the gas station behind Bartow and the initial person who alerted Goodwin.

People who have information on the whereabouts of these two witnesses is asked to call Hislop at 268-2590.

Chris Durant/The Times-Standard Article Launched: 09/28/2007 03:41:11 PM PDT

WHOA - There's VIDEO

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

What happens now in the PL case...

The briefs have been submitted.

Now the case is in the hands of the law clerks who will go over the record. In this case it is a short record; just motions and demurrers (and I guess however many amended complaints Gallegos/Stoen filed)

The clerks look for the law noted in the briefs. They check for factual accuracy. In this case, the briefs will not be considered fact intensive.

The clerks will research the law. Then they make an analysis for the justices.

The justices, who meet once a week, will go over the memo from the clerks.

The residing justice will assign the case to three out of the four justices.

They will go over the memo, and send the clerks back to research anything they want researched

Out of the three, one will be appointed to author the opinion based on the information provided in the briefs, and by the clerks, and by the law.

Then they circulate the opinion - and they either come to an agreement or they have a dissenting opinion.

Next, they send a notification out that they are ready for oral arguments.

The parties have 10 days from receipt of the notice to exercise their constitutional right to oral argument. Their last chance to make their case.

After oral argument is deemed submitted, the justices have 90 days to render an opinion.
William R. McGuiness, Administrative Presiding Justice
Stuart R. Pollak, Associate Justice
Peter J. Siggins, Associate Justice
Associate Justice - Vacant - a sitting superior court judge may be appointed to fill the vacancy
First Appellate District History
Interesting: filing e-briefs with 4th District, Division Three

I'm working on posting the various briefs for those who are interested. Pretty incredible stuff.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

It's not our Michael Twombly,

ours is Michael Phillip, not Michael S, I'm pretty sure - but it is funny that there'd be two Michael Twomblys who were into computer spamming...
Spam Guilty Plea
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Anne Perry, who prosecuted the case, court documents allege that Eveloff solicited another individual, Michael S. Twombly, to lease computer access throughout the United States. Twombly then provided the password and login information to Eveloff, allowing Eveloff to send the spam from his computer in Iowa....

Hislop and the CIRT...

ER CHP officer shoots DUI suspect

A man suspected of driving under the influence was shot Sunday after a vehicle pursuit that ended with the driver’s alleged attempt to back over an officer from the Humboldt Area Office of the California Highway Patrol...

...The Critical Incident Response Team was called out Sunday and is conducting an investigation led by the DA’s Office.

That office’s chief investigator, Mike Hislop, said Monday afternoon that he could not say whether the CHP officer was placed on leave pending the investigation’s results.

Calls to the CHP were referred back to Hislop.

TS Pursuit ends in gunfire
TS Driver shot by police identified
The driver of a car who was shot after he allegedly lead pursuing California Highway Patrol officers on a chase through and around Blue Lake has been identified as Rodney Bartow Jr.

Should the CHP take a tip from Garr Nielsen?

Follow up:
Man shot by California Highway Patrol officer out of jail after posting $50,000 bail
After receiving medical treatment, Bartow was booked into the Humboldt County jail on suspicion of driving under the influence, assault with a deadly weapon, felony evasion, being a felon in possession of a handgun and driving on a suspended license.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Gallegos' Use of Force Policy

Click here

Anybody see anything confidential in here? Anything to cause the DA to refuse to release it until forced to do so with a public records act request from the Times Standard?

Update on Paul Gallegos' Appeal - Years later

This began in 2005, long after Gallegos' lawsuit was tossed on demurrer:
The People v. Pacific Lumber Co. et al.
Division 3
Case Number A112028

11/18/2005 Exempt filing fee.
11/18/2005 Notice of appeal lodged/received
More recent activity:
08/31/2007 Respondent's brief.
08/31/2007 Request for judicial notice filed. (by the) respondent
09/20/2007 To court. respondent's request for judicial notice
09/21/2007 Telephone conversation with: Christa McKinney of D. A. office. Inadvertenlty only copies of reply brief were sent priority mail yesterday. Original sent priority mail today.
09/24/2007 Appellant's reply brief.
09/24/2007 Case fully briefed.

Paul's brief was due 9/20.

Christa McKinney or Christa McKimmy?

Ruling Re: Demurrer to the First Amended Complaint Filed April 30, 2004
APPELLANT’S OPENING BRIEF Dated: November 8, 2006

Saturday, September 22, 2007

You're censoring me, heraldo?

This comment keeps getting deleted.
Ooops? Better check out the Super Happy Fun Blog.
Is heraldo Larry Glass? Only heraldo can clear this up. Time to come out.

The spin is trying every which way to explain it away, but heraldo's initial response was: heraldo said...
How exciting! Larry left the Humboldt Herald url in the comment form, adding to the great Humboldt blog mystery. Tongues are wagging.
Sat Sep 22, 10:11:00 PM

Additional blog discussion:
on Eric's (Arkley family Responds)
on heraldo (Orinda Mayor defends Arkley)
and on heraldo (Arkley's disclaimer)
on Anon.R. mous (Is Heraldo really Larry Glass?)

Capdiamont's POLL on the Arkley/Glass affair. VOTE!

AND - The Arkley letter/Apology(?) to Glass has been released to the papers

Looks like an apology to me.
Dear Larry,

I owe you an apology. Last night was neither the time nor the place for me to bring up how your words and deeds have caused great hurt to my family, specifically my daughters. It was impulsive of me. Unfortunately, when I am impulsive, I tend to be single minded (loud) and empathic (louder). I am counting on you as a father and as a political veteran to understand and accept this apology.

I will not belabor the point that I was trying to make to you last night. As you know, I am more than willing to face the slings and arrows that come my way, especially here in Eureka. It is hard for me to express the pain and outrage that I feel when my wife and daughters are needlessly brought in, as you did. I obviously need to adopt a different and better approach when trying to convey to others why I think that it is unfair that my wife and daughters need to suffer because of this.

Again, my apologies for last night.


TS Arkley apology e-mail out; Glass says note falls short

Behind the scenes

Ask any politician or aspiring politician in this county if they are working with Richard Salzman and they will deny it.

But he continues to work behind the scenes, continuing to stir up trouble and smear his opponents. He got caught sticking his little anti-Arkleyville stickers on parking meters in Eureka, got caught mailing out "Dump Geist" bumper stickers - sneaky attacks and dirty tricks characterize his political dealings.

He is now avowedly anti-Arkley, where once he went begging for money for his candidates.

Is there anyone who believes he is not involved in the Glass/Arkley affair?

His latest listserve emails show where he is working these days:

Under Richard's list he is inviting people to make comments on the Glass/Arkley story in the Times Standard today,

Under the AEB listserve he is supporting Pat Higgins and continuing to beat the drum against Palco.

Larry Glass is citing the boilerplate "privacy disclaimer" as a reason for his not releasing the apology he received from Rob Arkley.

Subscribers to the AEB listserve are also blessed to receive emails from Richard's List, Redwood Progressive, Behind the Redwood Curtain/, For the North Coast/Local Solutions, Local Solutions PAC, Michael Twombly, Friends of Chris Kerrigan, Friends of Paul Gallegos: yet Richard has added his own privacy disclaimer to his listserve. This is Richard Salzman's personal list, intended for fans, friends and supporters only. This communication constitutes an electronic communication within the meaning of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, 18 USC 2510, and its disclosure is strictly limited to the recipient intended by the sender of this message. Any review or distribution by others is strictly prohibited. If you are not an invited subscriber, please contact the sender by return electronic mail and delete all copies of this communication.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Daniel in Venezuela

It's heartening to see the huge numbers of visitors to Daniel in Venezuela's blog, Venezuela News And Views. It means alot of people are paying attention.

In his latest posts, he is discussing Hugo Chavez's new Constitution:
For Example: article 230

Old article 230:
The presidential period is of 6 years. The President of the Republic can be reelected immediately, only once, for a new period.

New article 230:
The presidential period is of 7 years. The President of the Republic can be reelected immediately for a new period.


Aleksander's VCrisis is also covering it:
Venezuela: constitutional amendment illegal according to Supreme Court
London 11.09.07 | It turns out that Venezuela's Supreme Court ruled against indefinite reelection only in March last year, as can be seen in this sentence. The ruling, based on a preceding decision, stressed the fact that indefinite reelection puts Venezuela's democracy in jeopardy and alters the country's constitutional framework and in no uncertain terms declared it illegal. Just in case chavistas try to pull a fast one, as they did recently with Chavez's own statements against staying in power indefinitely, I have saved all pages and files files related to both sentences of the Electoral Chamber of the Supreme Court.

However these sentences put in perspective the sheer illegality of Chavez's wet dream of becoming Fidel's mini me. The opposition is, as usual, desperately pushing the country further into the abyss by accepting the illegal amendments. They know of the existence of these rulings, from the highest court in the land nonetheless, yet they continue playing the 'democratic' charade imposed by the Bolivarians. It beggars belief how the opposition establishment in its entirety has failed to realize that debating something illegal implies acceptance of it, but then again Chavez, as Red Ken, has been blessed by having such bunch of incompetent halfwits as foes.

Venezuela: Hugo Chavez to change his constitution
16.08.07 - As I was dozing last night the issue of Chavez indefinite re-election came on the news: there he was in all his `democratic magnificence´ addressing a room chock full of assenting sycophants. The ridiculous pretence of his life-presidency crowning has got to be the most transparent power grab ever recorded; for let us never forget that only him gets indefinite re-election; governors, mayors and other lesser revolutionary creatures are to be disposed of, democratically of course. Thus the `most progressive constitution of the modern world,´ the one that `empowers minorities,´ `enshrines human rights´ and `allows for the democratic removal of elected officials´ is amended to include the most patent dictatorial provision. Venezuelans can sleep at ease now in the know that Chavez will respect, at the very least, one article of his constitution...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Day 526

Attorneys file motion for partial dismissal in Moore civil suit

TS Attorneys representing the city, police department and individual officers filed a motion to dismiss portions of the wrong death and civil rights violation lawsuit brought by the son of Cheri Lyn Moore, who was killed by Eureka police during a standoff at her downtown apartment.

In the motion, scheduled for an October hearing, attorneys argue that the complaint fails to state a valid cause of action a portion of the defendants: Lt. Tony Zanotti, Lt. Todd Wilcox, Sgt. Lynne Soderberg, Officer Robert Mengal, Detective Ron Harpham, Officer Terence Liles and Officer Rodrigo Reyna-Sanchez.

Attorneys also argue that Moore's son, David Moore, “does not state a valid claim for general damages for pain and suffering.”

The suit also names former police Chief David Douglas, the city of Eureka, Officer Tim Jones, Officer Rocky Harpham and Sgt. Michael Johnson.

Moore's death in April 2006 was the first in a series of high-profile officer-involved shootings that left the Eureka Police Department and the community reeling.

She was killed when police stormed her apartment after a two-hour-plus standoff, during which she brandished a flare gun and threw various objects out of her second-story downtown apartment.

In the civil lawsuit, Moore's son alleges Douglas rushed the operation by not giving negotiators enough time to talk with her, refusing to move police out of her sight and refusing to allow a friend to speak with Moore.

”Chief Douglas worsened an already bad situation, pretended there was a grave threat when none existed, and needlessly caused the death of a woman who stricken by a mental health crisis reached out to the appropriate governmental agency in order to get help and medication,” the lawsuit states.

The causes of action cited were unreasonable seizure and deprivation of life, violation of constitutional rights due to a policy or practice, wrongful death, violation of California civil rights and negligence.


ER Mad River dog trial ends
John and Stacy Malcolm found not guilty on all charges.
Finally covered in the TS Couple found not guilty of animal abuse

ER Two stand trial in connection to Mad River dog abuse case
ER Testimony continues in Mad River dog case 9/19/2007
ER Jury selected in Trinity County dog abuse case

ER Two mass dog graves discovered near Mad River 8/16/2006
ER Trinity County Animal Control warned of dogs' plight since 2005 8/18/2006
ER "Dogs seemed fine," Animal Control Officer Edwards says 8/18/2006
ER Defense attorney says John and Stacy Malcolm not to blame for abuse of dogs 8/18/2006
ER Dogs' condition consistent with starvation, report states 8/20/2006
ER Death toll rises in Mad River dog deaths 8/22/2006
ER Evidence mounts in animal abuse case 8/24/2006
ER Report details 'horrific' conditions 8/26/2006
ER Community responds to dogs' abuse by donating to rescue 8/27/2006
ER National Animal group challenges Gallegos over abuse case 8/30/2006
ER National, international animal groups weigh in on abuse scandal 8/30/2006
ER ER Editorial - Specious arguments
ER 78 additional felonies charged in Mad River dog abuse case 9/1/2006
ER Malcolms 'walked through' arraignment 9/2/2006
ER When law enforcement fails, 'vigilantism' sometimes needed 9/4/2006
ER Third suspect in dog case arraigned 9/7/2006
ER Mad River dog abuse case suspect speaks out 9/9/2006
ER Hearing set for Mad River dog suspects 9/14/2006
ER Dog suspects head for trial 10/13/2006
ER Code addressing animal abuse requires low burden of proof 10/16/2006
ER Animal abuse linked to serial killings, needs to be addressed 10/16/2006
ER Gallegos says he will not file felony in Bugenig horse case 10/21/2006
ER If Lucky had been seized, perhaps he would have survived 10/23/2006
ER Original owner of Mad River dogs released from prison 11/1/2006
ER Malcolm attorney requests charges be dropped 12/13/2006
ER Defendant in Mad River dogs case accepts plea deal 8/20/2007

A trial

Man stands trial for alleged attack on former girlfriend
Woman's injury likely not caused by fall, expert says

Jury verdict a mixed bag in felony assault and battery trial Good Going, Humboldt County Deputy District Attorney Ben McLaughlin.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Smart man.

Looks like a fully justified major vote of no confidence in the DA.

Chief says future probes of epd will go to Department of Justice

Chief Garr Nielsen of the Eureka Police Department announced Monday that the California Department of Justice, rather than the local Critical Incident Response Team, would handle any future investigations involving EPD officers.

Nielsen said his department “would still be active partners in providing resources to any other agency at any time when requested for major criminal investigations, but any case involving use of force or criminal allegations against our officers will go directly to DOJ.”

The decision, Nielsen said, is intended to increase public confidence in the outcome of investigations.

“DOJ has a great deal of experience in investigating these kinds of incidents,” he said, “far more than anybody locally, and I believe they have a greater level of expertise.”

While Nielsen did not specifically link the decision to the CIRT investigation of the death of Martin Frederick Cotton II, who died Aug. 9 in police custody, the chief said he wished he had sent the Cotton case to the DOJ.

“Not because I think necessarily they would have done the investigation any differently or any better, but I think having people at the (Humboldt County) District Attorney’s Office closely linked to the department could compromise the appearance of objectivity,” Nielsen said.

Chief Investigator Mike Hislop from the District Attorney’s Office was involved in the Cotton investigation and previously worked as a traffic sergeant for the EPD.

Former EPD Traffic Officer Wayne Cox also now works for the District Attorney’s Office as one of Hislop’s investigators.

When asked if it made him uncomfortable to have his officers investigated by their former co-workers, Nielsen said, “Yes. To some degree it does. It’s not to say they inherently have a bias, but I think it’s very difficult to take personalities out of it when you’ve moved on to another organization.”

Nielsen acknowledged that Hislop and Cox were not the only local players to switch teams, and said he believed the community would have more confidence in investigations conducted by the state.

“I think the DOJ will lend a sense of impartiality to these investigations that isn’t necessarily there with people who have associations with local law enforcement, either because they’re former employees or have close personal relationships within the agencies being investigated,” Nielsen said.

Written guidelines created by the Law Enforcement Chiefs’ Association of Humboldt, or LECAH, state that primary investigative responsibility for critical incidents lies with the “venue agency,” meaning the office or department within whose jurisdiction the incident occurs.

While the LECAH guidelines “strongly encourage” use of CIRT protocols for investigations, they make clear the venue agency is under no obligation to do so.

“The DOJ has always been an available player,” Humboldt County Sheriff Gary Philp said Monday, “and certainly they can be brought into an investigation. It really falls to the agency of jurisdiction to decide.”

Though he called including DOJ resources “a good idea,” Philp said his office would likely continue using CIRT.

But Chief Randy Mendosa from the Arcata Police Department left open the possibility that the APD might also use the DOJ.

“The amount of resources and the level of expertise of the DOJ investigators is quite impressive. The DOJ option was not available to us when the individual department policies and the LECAH CIRT agreement were written,” Mendosa said.

“I have not yet talked with anyone at DOJ about this issue, but if they were willing and available, I would certainly amend our department policy to include the DOJ option.”

Nielsen said he made the announcement within the department Thursday and notified the heads of allied agencies Friday. The change took effect immediately.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Before the facts are in w/update

The Humboldt Democratic Central Committee is a political animal in more ways than one. And this week, in their partisan zeal, they decided to send a letter to the Attorney General demanding he look into "the push."

HCDCC Subcommittee on Education and Communications Chairperson Greg Conners said the group’s hope is that the attorney general will investigate “and the appropriate action will be taken based upon facts that can be confirmed.”

"based upon facts that can be confirmed" - Fascinating statement. Because nothing has been "confirmed" yet. First Glass filed a report, then he decided to press charges. Then EPD appointed a senior homicide detective to look into the matter, and presumably an investigation is underway.

Before the results of that investigation are known, the HCDCC pounces. Seizes this golden opportunity to bring down the man that brought down Tom Daschle. And, depending on Jerry Brown's own integrity, he may seize this opportunity to punish a politcal foe of the democrats.

And, When reached by phone on Thursday, Gallegos said Arkley has contributed to his campaign and he considers him a “friend.”

“To avoid an appearance of an impropriety, I think it’s best the AG’s Office as opposed to me” pursue the matter, he said.

Meanwhile - the Attorney General's Office has tacitly refused to get involved here with Paul Gallegos, deeming all criticism of him to be strictly "political." But the stack of complaints will add up sooner or later, and the decimation will reach a point where the Attorney General has no choice but to intervene, maybe even have to send in a team to run the office until it can be stabilized.

Yet the HCDCC cares naught. CAST, the Victim Witness Unit, an unbelievable list of plea bargains, a Grand Jury report that left no doubt as to what was happening, yet the HCDCC chose to endorse the man. Even though, in that case, the facts were in.

It's very telling.
I'd have to say things are going to get even more interesting. The Journal's Town Dandy reports: We had a good time meeting last week with Steven Glazer, the public relations man retained by Eureka kazillionaire Rob Arkley to put forth his case in the now-infamous Avalon incident (see "Town Dandy," Sept. 13). We'd heard from KSLG's John Matthews -- the first local to score an interview with Glazer, we believe -- that the fellow actually serves as mayor of the East Bay town of Orinda when not flacking. That intrigued us. Then, when Glazer showed up and we embarked on the customary getting-to-know-you chat, we were even more astonished to learn that in the turbulent ’70s he had served as press secretary to then-Gov. Jerry Brown and embattled California Supreme Court Justice Rose Bird.

But Glazer was in town to talk Arkley, and we worked our way quickly to the point. Eureka City Councilmember Larry Glass, the alleged recipient of Arkley's shoves and "I will destroy you" threats, had gotten all the good press so far, Glazer said -- he realized that. Now the Arkley family wished to tell its side of the story, so they retained his services. He had already worked with them in some unspecified capacity on the Marina Center, the big box-anchored development proposal that will be making its way before the City Council sometime soon.

Basically, Glazer wished to make the case that Glass was an asshole from way back, especially to Arkley's daughters. Though he could not discuss what happened that night at Avalon, he could say that this alleged rudeness to the Arkley daughters was what so exercised the father that night, when he met Glass face-to-face for the first time. He provided a statement from one of the daughters, to the effect that in their meeting with Glass, back when he was giving away "anti-Arkleyville" stickers in his shop, Glass had called the daughters "collateral damage" in his war with Arkley. (Glass told the Times-Standard that he didn't remember the conversation that way at all.)

Fine and good, we said, but it doesn't really cut to the heart of the matter, does it? The accusation on the table is that Glazer's client physically assaulted and verbally threatened an elected official. What of that?

Glazer said that Arkley had apologized for the incident, contra Glass' assertions. He then read a section of an e-mail that Arkley sent to Glass the morning after. Strangely, though, he would not give me a copy of that apology. He said that I should get it from Glass -- that it was Glass' place to give it to me. It was then I realized that I was in the spell of some kind of master PR mojo that I didn't really understand. To me, it was like -- Dude, you have information? Great. But I don't really feel a burning desire to play Blue's Clues with you.

But then the City of Eureka released the e-mail in question in response to a Public Records Act request from the Times-Standard. We were able to horn in on their work. You probably read the full e-mail in Wednesday's T-S. Suffice it to say that it did, in fact, say "[M]y apologies for last night." The e-mail also reiterated that from Arkley's point of view, it was all about the hurt to his family: "It is hard for me to express the pain and outrage that I feel when my wife and daughters are needlessly brought in, as you did."

For Glass, it wasn't enough. "'I'm sorry I pushed you, I'm sorry I dissed you, I'm sorry I called you a liar a million times,'" he said Tuesday. "None of those elements were there."

Day 521 - Don't shoot the messenger...

This letter should go to the District Attorney, NOT not the Times Standard.
Put the Moore case behind us

For months we have seen the face of Cheri Lyn Moore in the paper. It's time to let it go.

Any time a mentally ill person, high on whatever legal or illegal substance, threatens the public safety with any kind of weapon, it is our law-enforcement officers' duty to prevent any risk to bystanders, as well as themselves. It doesn't matter what the weapon is, whether or not it is loaded, or even whether or not it looks like a toy. The time for defusement is past when a weapon becomes a threat.

Sorrow for loss of life, and compassion for loved ones' grief, doesn't take away this responsibility.

If my child happened to be passing Ms. Moore's apartment, and had an eye put out by a misfired flare gun, I would consider the law enforcement remiss in their duty.

If Christopher Burgess were to stumble over my child in the school yard with an open hunting knife, I would consider the law enforcement remiss in their duty. I think most members of our community are grateful to know that our police force attempts to protect us from such possible threats.

It is time for your paper to stop the daily reminder of Ms. Moore's tragedy. Our police officers acted appropriately. This tragedy is not the fault of law enforcement.

Whether we agree or not with the officers' actions, the blame still falls on the one who threatened the public safety.
Give us a break. Let the community heal by putting this sad situation behind us.

Betty Shipman

Let's hope he gets her message: Give us a break. Let the community heal by putting this sad situation behind us.

Funny, since he invoked that word "heal" in his recent response.

"I'll DESTROY you!"

While they're at it, maybe Larry Glass and the HCDCC ought to sic Jerry Brown on this guy... (a simple google of the phrase pulls this up...)

Disagree on climate change and "I'll destroy your career!""

A message from "global warming prophet"/President of the American Council on Renewable Energy, Michael Eckhart to Dr Marlo Lewis of the Competitive Enterprise Institute: one source

"Marlo -
You are so full of cr*p.

You have been proven wrong. The entire world has proven you wrong. You are the last guy on Earth to get it. Take this warning from me, Marlo. It is my intention to destroy your career as a liar. If you produce one more editorial against climate change, I will launch a campaign against your professional integrity. I will call you a liar and charlatan to the Harvard community of which you and I are members. I will call you out as a man who has been bought by Corporate America. Go ahead, guy. Take me on.

Michael T. Eckhart, President
American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE)

HEY! Don't get me wrong! I WANT Jerry Brown to come up here - you're just calling him for the wrong reasons. There are more serious issues that need his attention!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The cost of advertising w/update

Reading about's huge discount on their New York Times ad makes me wonder if Shellenberger had access to that kind of discount...

According to Abbe Serphos, director of public relations for the Times, "the open rate for an ad of that size and type is $181,692."

A spokesman for confirmed to The Post that the liberal activist group had paid only $65,000 for the ad - a reduction of more than $116,000 from the stated rate.

A Post reporter who called the Times advertising department yesterday without identifying himself was quoted a price of $167,000 for a full-page black-and-white ad on a Monday.

Serphos declined to confirm the price and refused to offer any inkling for why the paper would give such a discounted price.

I've always wondered where the money was going to come from to pay for Salzman, Stoen and Gallegos' proposed full page ads in the LA Times and San Francisco Chronicle.

When I talked to the ad rep for the LA Times, he sure wasn't offering any more than an ordinary frequency discount, and surprisingly, he hadn't heard of Michael Shellenberger or Lumina Strategies.

If you remember - The plan was for Paul Gallegos, the District Attorney (the chief law enforcement officer of Humboldt County) to solicit special interest money to fund the Palco lawsuit by placing "full page ads in the Los Angeles Times and San Francisco Chronicle."

At the time the cost of a full page ad in the Los Angeles Times, at open rate was $103,200.00. ($800.00 per inch) $129,000.00 if the ad ran on Sunday ($1,000.00 per inch) and the cost of a full page ad in the San Francisco Chronicle, at open rate was $73,788.00. ($572.00 per inch) $77,529.00 if the ad ran on Sunday ($601.00 per inch), the cost of an ad in the local paper, The Times Standard was $30.50 per inch, or $3,934.50.

So who was going to be placing the ads, I wonder? Fenton Communications? Or some newly created group? And how much were they actually going to pay? And who was going to pay for it? How much were they going to spend? Where was all these hundreds of thousands of dollars going to come from? How much did they expect to make? And how was Gallegos going to account for all this money? And how was it going to be spent? Was this all for Cotchett? Is that how he gets paid? By corrupting the judicial system? Ends justify the means?

All these questions remain unanswered.

There's alot of talk about bringing the Attorney General up here now for the Glass/Arkley debacle. While he's here, maybe he can look into some of this.
New York Post - MOVEON'S SMEAR: A VILE NEW LOW - September 11, 2007
New York Times THE PUBLIC EDITOR Betraying Its Own Best Interests
FOR nearly two weeks, The New York Times has been defending a political advertisement that critics say was an unfair shot at the American commander in Iraq.
But I think the ad violated The Times’s own written standards, and the paper now says that the advertiser got a price break it was not entitled to...

New York Times Public Editor Rebukes's Petraeus Ad Sunday, September 23, 2007
The New York Times acknowledged Sunday that a controversial advertisement attacking Gen. David Petraeus, the American commander in Iraq, was sold to a liberal activist group at a discount rate the organization was not entitled to receive, and that the paper violated its own advertising policies when it published the ad...

Cause of death released in Cotton case

The Humboldt County Coroner's Office said Thursday that the official cause of death in the Martin Cotton II case is a subdural hematoma due to blunt force trauma.

Coroner Frank Jager said there were two contributing factors in the death, LSD intoxication and Excited Delirium Syndrome.

Cotton died hours after being booked into the Humboldt County Jail on suspicion of randomly fighting people at the Rescue Mission in Old Town Aug. 9.

Several police responded and fought with Cotton while trying to detain and arrest him.

Jager said the manner of death could not be determined but offered four scenarios: Cotton received the injury from fighting with people at the Rescue Mission, he received it during the struggle with police, or it was self-inflicted blunt force trauma after he was booked into the jail. The fourth and least likely, according to Jager, is that he already had the injury before arriving in Old Town.

The Critical Incident Response Team investigating the death is continuing its investigation and may not be able to submit its report to the District Attorney's Office for more than a week because one of the investigators is out of town.
The Times-Standard

It's going to take them a WHOLE WEEK? Why not hold out for 520 days.

More: ER Cotton died from head injury

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Day 519 - Rumors denied w/updates

photo swiped from heraldo
Heraldo had it first - Gallegos on Channel 3 in another incomprehensible interview blaming the media for his inability to make a decision in the Cheri Moore case - Gallegos said a Criminal Grand Jury has not been empaneled in the case, and declined to confirm whether he’d made the final decision to utilize a Grand Jury. Gallegos stated that "media attention slows it down."

Gallegos, as I've said before, is caught between a rock and a hard place. He wants to please his handlers and charge the EPD Officers, but he can't. And he knows it.

If I understand it correctly - Here's the problem:

A District Attorney presents charges one of two ways:
1. As an alternative to a preliminary hearing, the DA empanels a Criminal Grand Jury to investigate in secret with no defense attorney present.
2. The DA just files charges and there is a preliminary hearing open to the public, and the defense can actually respond to questions.

You only empanel a grand jury when you don't want all the evidence to be heard by the public - in this case everything is out there and has been for a long time - the investigation was closed well before the coroners inquest. There's no need for secrecy.

If this were 10 or 11 months ago, prior to everyone testifying and prior to the coroner's inquest, Gallegos could justify empaneling a Criminal Grand Jury, ostensibly because there was sensitive information that he didn't want out there.

But now, the investigations are complete, and have been for quite some time - unless there's some secret witness hiding in the wings, there's nothing new here and no need to hide anything from the public.

What he seems to be doing is passing the buck - he doesn't want to make a difficult decision so he is hoping the Criminal Grand Jury can pull the rabbit out of the hat for him...

Gallegos' statement in the interview is telling - he says he has three choices:
1. File a complaint
2. Not file a complaint
3. Form a Criminal Grand Jury

Actually, he has at least two more:
1. Clear the Officers
2. Hand the case over to the Attorney General

It would be stupid to empanel a Criminal Grand Jury if you aren't planning to file charges, so...

Is he looking for a 1st degree murder charge? First Degree means he has to prove that it was premeditated - obviously not the case here because they were going to get her out of her apartment and take her to a Mental Health Facility - no intent to kill.

Is he looking for a 2nd degree murder charge? Second Degree means it was not premeditated, but he still has to prove an intent to kill - again, clearly not the case here

For either First or Second Degree murder, he has to prove intent to kill.

Is he looking for a Voluntary Manslaughter charge? For that he would have to prove heat of passion - there was none.

Is he looking for a Involuntary Manslaughter charge? A misdemeanor* - This is the one thing that could apply - involuntary manslaughter could be a lawful act conducted in an unlawful manner - BUT - the statute of limitations ran out last year. Now perhaps he has something else in mind, maybe he has come up with something he thinks will fly.

* NOTE: - Nope - I'm wrong about that - reading the wrong subsection - this would actually be a straight felony under, I think 192 a, b or c, not a wobbler, not a misdemeanor, so this must be where he thinks he has something. (And thanks to those who contacted me to let me know I was off.)

But why all the theatrics? WHY? What is there that justifies putting everyone through this when he can just make a decision - and he could have passed it off to the Attorney General and washed his hands of it.
TS DA says no request yet for grand jury in Moore case

Day 518 - Rumors confirmed...

A year plus 153 days later Gallegos makes his move... Moore case headed to grand jury?

Public officials who spoke on condition of anonymity told The Eureka Reporter last week that a criminal grand jury will be convened to look into the death of Cheri Moore, a mentally ill woman who was shot and killed by officers from the Eureka Police Department in 2006.

The officials said Humboldt County District Attorney Paul Gallegos assigned veteran prosecutor Arnie Klein to impanel the grand jury, which would determine whether charges should be filed against law enforcement personnel involved in the incident.

EPD Chief Garr Nielsen confirmed Tuesday that he had discussed with Gallegos “in general terms the possibility of a grand jury” in the Moore case, adding that he was not necessarily opposed to the idea.

Nielsen said that in Oregon, where he previously worked, all cases in which a death resulted from police use of force were reviewed by a grand jury.

“It’s common practice in my view,” he said, “but my impression is that it’s not common here. That gives me some level of trepidation about it if it’s unusual for a case to be reviewed by a grand jury.”

Were a grand jury impaneled, Nielsen said, it would be his “clear expectation” that its purpose would be to conduct “a very fair and objective review of the incident without any slant toward securing a criminal indictment against any police officers involved. ...”

“I think to bring closure we should look at the case as carefully and dispassionately as possible. If the grand jury could accomplish that in an unbiased manner, then I don’t necessarily have any objection to it.”

He said it would, however, be “extremely detrimental to this community if there was any kind of dog-and-pony show that laid out these officers who were just doing their jobs.”

A criminal grand jury typically consists of 19 community members. Its proceedings take the place of a preliminary hearing, in which a judge determines whether a case brought by the District Attorney’s Office will proceed to trial.

Gallegos would neither confirm nor deny the reports, but said by e-mail Tuesday, “This community is entitled to an impartial finding, whether it is by me or by a grand jury,” noting that “continued hype” surrounding the incident has both hindered and delayed the process.

“This incident is going to take a long time to heal,” Gallegos wrote. “I believe we will come out better for it, but it will take time. But the only way that can happen is if we work to set aside the passions and prejudices that so often dominate our discussions of things and work toward patience, compassion and understanding for all people.”

Moore, 48, was killed in her Eureka apartment on April 14, 2006, after she brandished a flare gun during an approximately two-hour standoff with the EPD.
Nielsen reiterated Tuesday that he believed his officers acted appropriately in the incident.

In conclusion, Gallegos wrote, “I believe Cheri Moore’s death was/is a symptom of other bigger issues that our community has and is faced with. What the diagnosis is will ultimately be decided by others.”


But by choosing this route, he is essentially announcing that he is choosing to file charges. I repeat - he has no business handling this case. It should have been immediately handed over to the Attorney General. Gallegos' handlers made huge political hay out of this case, and he is too vested in the anti-cop agenda to make any kind of fair decision in this case. Period.

My, my, my... (w/updates)

Glass requests formal criminal investigation into alleged confrontation with Arkley

Looks to me like Larry has succumbed to the pressure, demanding he "get Arkley." You can see the tone change and the rhetoric escalate on heraldo's anti-Arkley blog. It went from Glass filing an incident report just to get it on the record to now it's his "civic duty" to file charges

Glass pursues charges against Arkley
The Town Dandy on the incident

I guess we'll end up talking about it here since, among other things, Larry Glass said, "that he tried and failed to bypass the EPD and take his case directly to the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office."

Interesting in and of itself, given the Salzman connection to both men.

Then there's the fact that this is yet another case of conflict of interest for Gallegos, since Rob Arkley was a big supporter at one time. $17.000. But nothing this last election, which seems to be a root cause of all the anti-Arkley venom. There were no complaints about the guy until his rift with Salzman.

I guess I'll add it to the "cases to watch" label.

Interesting post on the subhect at Capdiamont's Weblog.
And another at 299 Opine

It gets weirder - heraldo has it, and Eric has it, Greg and Carol have it, of course - The ludicrous HCDCC has sent a letter to the Attorney General demanding that the AG look into the Arkley/Glass affair. Funny they have no such scruples about CAST, the loss of our experienced prosecutors, Derek Bowman, Cheri Moore - Gallegos is their baby. Disgusting.

Addtl: Letters to the editor
Arkley and Glass: Grow up
09/17/2007 04:15:20 AM PDT

I have just two words to say to Larry Glass: Cry Baby!

This is just the silliest thing I have heard since my boys were 8 and 6 years old. “He pushed me and I almost fell.” “He called me a doo-doo head.” “He said it first.” “Well, he said that he would break my bike.” “I'm gonna tell on you.”

To Larry Glass and Rob Arkley: Grow up the both of you, or you will lose your allowance for a month.

Val Saunders

Wonder what will happen this time...

Humboldt Democratic Central Committee invites candidates to request endorsements

True, now they have a new head - Milt Boyd instead of the vociferous Patrick Riggs. Salzman's puppet group "Local Solutions" is no longer operating out of their office, far as I can tell - they served their purpose and are no longer needed. Salzman and Twombly are not longer pulling the strings...

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Good thing? Or Bad thing?

Would this have helped with handling Cotton or Peters? Would it even apply?

Bill calls for allowing jails to medicate mentally ill inmates

The state Senate voted 36-0 Friday to approve Senate Bill 568, which would allow county jail facilities to provide medications to defendants with mental illnesses so the defendants could stand trial...

...Existing law provides that if a defendant is found to be mentally incompetent to stand trial, the trial or judgment is suspended until the defendant is restored to mental competency, according to a news release from Wiggins. Current laws also require county law enforcement to take the “incompetent to stand trial” defendant to a state hospital or treatment facility in order to restore the defendant to competency.

...If this defendant has been accused of committing a felony offense, involving great bodily harm or another serious crime, the law allows the defendant to be involuntarily medicated in a mental hospital or facility, according to the news release.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Planning Commission tables controversial Manila subdivision decision


Thursday night’s Humboldt County Planning Commission meeting was dominated by testimony regarding the proposed subdivision in Manila.

The project has attracted considerable opposition from nearby residents.

Developer Robert Riley touted his 17-unit subdivision project on the 3.8-acre site as the first sustainable green subdivision in the county.

But numerous Manila residents weren’t impressed and testified to the Planning Commission that the subdivision’s densely packed homes would ruin the character of the sparsely populated dune neighborhood.

The meeting was punctuated by several emotionally charged outbursts from residents who claimed Riley had previously illegally removed native dune trees from the property.

As Riley testified that four agencies investigated the tree removal and found no violations, several residents stormed out in protest of the hearing, calling it a “lie.”

Although public comments were wrapping up, commissioners ran out of time to make a decision and the hearing was continued until Oct. 4.
Full story

She has a point

I don't know about her statistics, but the fact that the weapons the DA investigators already carry working perfectly well when needed is a good one.

Dear Editor,

Regarding your article in the Sept. 1 paper titled “DA Gallegos can get his guns,” I think the “kill rate” (55 percent) by Eureka police shows the armament they have works just fine. Don’t you?

I, for one, would rather see the money spent on “nonlethal” weapons, which appear to be basically nonexistent to the Eureka Police Department.

Janet Busch

You just have to wonder - why does Paul want those weapons? Is it because Hislop wants them, and Paul can't say no? Is that the same reason he keeps jumping his new hires up the salary ladder? He's just a guy who can't say "No!"

Or is it the opposite - he wants them so bad because he was told "No."?

Does he really want in on the asset forfeiture raids because his department gets a higher payout if they conduct the raid than if they just tag along? It would seem like political suicide because in asset forfeiture raids he is targeting the very people who gave him barrels of cash in his elections. But he's shown a willingness to corrupt the system to gather cash to pay Cotchett to go after Palco - is that in the twisted plan?

Does it make sense to anybody? Why the DA wants to set up an assault team?

Thursday, September 06, 2007

This Week's Town Dandy

Hey, remember "term limits"? That was the quaint little theory proposed and approved by California voters back in 1990. The idea was that the business of government would be wrested from sharpies and placed in the hands of a new breed of "citizen-legislator." These wholesome, Jimmy Stewart-esque superhumans would rise from the tilled soil to reclaim Sacramento on behalf of good, honest, hard-working people. And after six or eight years of service, just as his replacement became ready for harvest, the "citizen-legislator" would gracefully dissolve into thin air.

That was the theory, anyway. Things turned out a bit differently in practice. Last year, Tamara Keith of National Public Radio documented six separate cases in which a termed-out legislator sought to hand over his or her chair in the legislature to an immediate family member. And that was just in one election.

As anthropologists have long noted, here on the North Coast the Democratic Party apparatus serves as a ready substitute for flesh-and-blood kinship ties. The guillotine falls on Eureka's Assemblymember Patty Berg next year, but arrangements have already been made to pass her crown to former State Senator Wes Chesbro, who was termie-termed out of his seat in 2006. And Chesbro's seat, you'll recall, was given to Santa Rosa's Pat Wiggins, who was herself termie-termed from the Assembly in 2004.

You'll notice there's a wallflower at this waltz --Wiggins has the Senate seat locked up until 2014, denying Berg her patrimony. What's she to do? Well, it looks like homegirl is going for the big brass ring. That's right: She's going statewide. California Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi terms out in 2010, and the hard-smoking Berg believes she has her opening. To that end, she's put together a little somethin'-somethin' called "Patty Berg for Insurance Commissioner," coming soon to a fundraiser near you.

The election may be three years away, but you've gotta start early if you want to muscle aside potential competitors. They may not be from the North Coast, and would therefore have limited understanding of the way public offices are traditionally inherited. Berg's war chest is looking pretty good right now, all things considered. In the first half of 2007, she's collected over $42,000, most of it in $500-$1,000 chunks from various medical groups and associations. (No dollars from any insurance companies yet.) Once she becomes the presumptive nominee, that small trickle of cash will come to dwarf the mighty Eel.

But Berg is out in 2008, unless a term-limit-busting measure making the rounds actually qualifies for the February ballot and passes. What's Berg going to do between 2008 and 2010? Here's a suggestion: How about the California Integrated Waste Management Board, a meat locker used by the powers-that-be in Sacramento to store politicos in transition. A seat on the board pays about $120,000 a year. Chesbro's not going to need his much longer.

Closer to the horizon: The campaigns that are seeking to shift or maintain the balance of power on the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation and Conservation District have all come sputtering to life, only two months before the Nov. 6 election date. The issue is port development, and the idea that Humboldt Bay could be rebuilt as a container shipping facility and a waypoint on U.S. trade with Asia. The project faces massive, monstrously expensive hurdles, but the pro-port people (in this race, the two incumbents) have every faith those hurdles can be overcome. The anti-port faction -- or the "pro-reality" faction, as some of them like to say -- think that there's better things to do with our money and time.

Second District (Fortuna to SoHum) challenger Carlos Quilez was first out of the gate, with a press conference on the Eureka Boardwalk last Wednesday. Quilez pumped his credentials -- sport fisherman, Army veteran, retired California State University administrator. He played up his endorsements -- Humboldt-Del Norte Central Labor Council, Operating Engineers Local No. 3. He spoke of his vision -- "good stewardship for our resources and fiscal responsibility."

Meanwhile, across the aisle and on the other side of the county, the campaign apparatus of McKinleyville incumbent Charles Ollivier exited the gate strong, with a press release touting his endorsements -- Congressman Mike Thompson, three of the five county supervisors, three of the sitting Harbor District members, businessmen, union members, a tribal member, various McKinleyville-area elected officials. The press release didn't shrink from Ollivier's raison d'être as a district commissioner: the development of Humboldt Bay's shipping facilities, and the return of the long-dormant railroad line (see "The Squeeze," July 5).

Not much yet from Ollivier's challenger, fisheries biologist Pat Higgins, or from the incumbent Quilez is challenging, Fortuna's Roy Curless. Unless they pick up the pace soon, it could be a one-sided race in each of the districts. If the challengers gain only one seat, they'd still be left with the butt end of a 3-2 majority...
Read the rest

The man who hanged himself in his cell at the Humboldt County jail has died.

Hanged inmate dies

The man who hanged himself in his cell at the Humboldt County jail has died.

James Peters, 25, of Hoopa, was pronounced dead Thursday morning at St. Joseph Hospital in Eureka.

Peters was found hanging from a bed sheet in his cell on August 29 in an apparent suicide attempt and was on life support since that time.

Public Information Officer Brenda Godsey from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office, which manages the jail, said Peters’ death marks the first suicide at the jail in four years.
ER Hanged inmate dies

ER Inmate hangs himself in jail
ER Inmate who hanged himself had history of assault
TS Mother denied access, information while son on life support
TS Family of Peters fighting to see him
TS Family: Peters not expected to live
TS Peters had been battling demons for some time
TS Peters dies after hanging
ER Autopsy of hanged inmate done; other studies pending
Some members of Peters’ extended family have said they did not believe Peters killed himself.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Day 500 501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 510 511 512 513

APD concerned about Harris sentence

ARCATA – Police Chief Randy Mendosa is reviewing the court transcript in the recent concluded trial of Clinton Lee Harris III.

Harris was originally accused of felony rape and burglary over an incident which occurred in the early morning hours of April 2, in which a 21-year-old Humboldt State University student testified that he had entered her home and sexually assaulted her. Harris wound up being sentenced Aug. 20 to 19 days in jail on a misdemeanor burglary plea.

“I have some concerns,” Mendosa said. “I have been in touch with Mr. Gallegos,” he said, referring to District Attorney Paul Gallegos.

Mendosa said he was loathe to publicly articulate his concerns, knowing the highly politicized atmosphere surrounding the controversial DA. He said offering fodder for public debate would only keep the issue alive in the media and perpetuate the alleged sexual assault survivor’s ordeal.

“As I do in my own investigations, I’ll be conveying my concerns privately,” Mendosa said.

According to court documents, three different prosecutors handled the case – Jeffrey Schwartz, Kelly Neel and Ben McLaughlin.

The plea arrangement was handled by McLaughlin, who wasn’t available before press time. However, in press accounts, McLaughlin suggested that the rape charge was weak due to the alleged victim’s prior romantic relationship with Harris, the lack of an immediate medical examination and a roommate’s not having heard anything unusual that night.

Testimony by the alleged victim indicated that she awoke to find Harris in her doorway. She said he then got in bed with her and assaulted her. During the alleged rape, the victim did not resist, but thought to herself, “Let it be over.”

Harris’ 19-day sentence was less 13 days already served, plus a $20 charge for court costs and three years probation. A $100 fine was suspended.

APD concerned about Harris sentence

Monday, September 03, 2007

Mark Your Calendar

This is a good thing.
This year's Storytelling Festival by the Sea -- a program of the Ink People Center for the Arts -- will be held at Patrick's Point State Park beginning at 7:30 p.m. next Friday with “Stories Under the Stars” at the Campfire Center. “Mostly Ghostly Tales” (not for children) will follow at 9:15 p.m. after a short break. The festival continues throughout the day on Saturday.
For more information, or to get a ticket order form, call 677-3840. Admission can also be paid at the gate. Fees vary.
Storytellers visit state park

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Reading the blogs.

So much information! "Is the blog getting blogged down?" A friend asks, "How do I find this or that?"
Several answers:
1, Use the "Labels" in the sidebar. Posts are divided by topic there. Some posts have multiple labels.
2. Use the "Search" feature above. That works pretty well. (Google searches also sometimes pulls up interesting results.)
3. Sometimes it's fun to go into the archives, just click on any month.
4. Go back to the beginning - With this blog - and with most any blog - check out the earliest posts to see what it was all about. This is where the person introduces themselves, and you're apt to get more info there. Blogs take on a life of their own and evolve over time, but it is often very interesting to see why they started in the first place. That's true within the labels also. Usually helps to go to the earliest post in the label lineup - that'll usually show you why the label was initiated.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Day 500 501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 and still no decision in the Cheri Moore case.

Too bad Gallegos doesn't have Tim Stoen around to help him find a way to charge those cops. Surely he could come up with something. Or maybe he has Ken Miller working on it. And when he attempts to file charges, Ken can profess to be "stunned."

Paul Gallegos' Asset Forfeiture Team will be armed with AR-15s and hollow point bullets

He's an elected official. He's untouchable. No one can stop him.

DA Gallegos can get his guns

Humboldt County Administrative Officer Loretta Nickolaus confirmed Friday that District Attorney Paul Gallegos had satisfied her office’s requirements in his bid to arm his investigators with semiautomatic rifles.

“Technically, I guess he’s OK with the use-of-force policy,” Nickolaus said by phone late Friday. “Financially, he has the money from the asset forfeiture account. So it’s really a judgment call for him whether or not he wants to do this.”

But Nickolaus stopped short of endorsing the plan.

“I still have my concerns over the potential for conflict of interest and liability exposure for the county, and I’m still not convinced that with this direction (investigators) will be able to maintain their independent perspective if one of their own is involved in a critical incident,” she said.

“But he can do what he wants. He knows how I feel about it, and he has completed the things I’ve asked him to complete.”

The controversy over the guns request began mid-May, after The Eureka Reporter learned that Gallegos’ seemingly routine allocation request for $58,462 in asset forfeiture funds was intended to outfit his eight investigators with AR-15 assault rifles, body armor, tactical vests, 5,000 rounds of hollow-point ammunition and matching parkas, polo shirts and pants.

The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors approved the request March 6, but purchases were stopped midstream by Nickolaus in May over liability, scope of work and conflict-of-interest concerns.

Nickolaus said Friday she asked the DA to add a rifles section to his revised use-of-force policy and to provide assurances that investigators would receive appropriate training and would qualify before using the rifles.

She was still troubled, though, by the possibility of a conflict of interest, particularly when the District Attorney’s Office is called on to investigate incidents in which it has been involved.

“Having DA investigators on the front line would seem to present a serious conflict for the DA in conducting an unbiased and independent investigation of the facts,” Nickolaus said.

“It is still my opinion, and maybe it’s his opinion, too, that the DA’s investigative and prosecutorial authority is at its best when it is independent of other law enforcement agencies.”

Attempts to contact Gallegos after normal business hours Friday were unsuccessful.

In his initial request for funds, Gallegos said the expenses represented permissible uses of asset forfeiture trust funds, and if the request was not approved, his investigators would “continue to face compromising health and safety risks when responding to criminal matters due to lack of proper equipment and communication mediums.”

TS - DA force policy cleared by county administrator

You know. It really isn't funny.

More discussion on Eric's blog
but the defenders are on the Times Standard's comments trying to justify this. "oh it is so inportant for the DA's investigators to have guns so that they will be s-a-a-a-f-e.." Insanity.