Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Trial Day 6 - Frustration and coercion - UPDATED


Former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen has been cleared of all major charges first filed against him in 2008. - Arcata Eye MARCH 2012


☛ TS Gundersen's wife spends day 4 on stand
The wife of former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen testified Monday that when she lied to investigators the day of her husband's arrest, she felt they were just holding another “Dave-bashing party.”

”It's not the first time everyone sat around bashing Dave,” Gundersen's wife, Darcie Seal, testified about the Feb. 8 interview with investigators. She referred to them as friends of Gundersen's ex-wife and said she answered their questions sarcastically and never wanted her husband arrested.

”I didn't think it was serious,” Seal said...

...Seal said she also told members of the District Attorney's Office that her Feb. 8 statements to law enforcement were false, and that she had even written District Attorney Paul Gallegos a letter on Feb. 25 saying as much.

Seal later read the letter before the court. It said she had been coerced by investigators, didn't want to file a criminal complaint and didn't fear her husband.

☛ ER Gundersen's wife finishes testimony
While rehashing the same back-and-forth heard in the previous two days of Seal’s testimony, she said her pleas to not have her husband prosecuted for spousal rape charges fell on deaf ears in the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office....

Seal testified that she first alerted investigators that her allegations of spousal rape against her husband were false after finding out that Gundersen had been arrested, the same day she interviewed with three Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office investigators — Feb. 8.

During that interview, she testified that she was told that no one else would know about that conversation and didn’t take it seriously.

She hand-wrote a letter to the District Attorney’s Office on Feb. 25 stating that she only talked to investigators to work out an appropriate police response, but had no intention of having Gundersen arrested and accused the HCSO of coercion....

...She testified that she talked to Gallegos and District Attorney’s Office Investigator Wayne Cox a number of times before, and after, Gundersen’s preliminary hearing in April, when she felt her pleas fell on deaf ears.

“I just felt like I was trying to tell the truth,” she said, “and I was talked over.”

It was during this time, Seal testified, that she thought that because Gundersen had sex with her while she was taking Lunesta and sleeping that it constituted rape. It wasn’t until later, after talking with her psychiatrist, that she learned that’s not the case, she said.

Seal testified that during the preliminary hearing she wanted to exercise her right to not testify against her husband, but her attorney at the time, Michael Crowley, said she had to testify to what she said in previous statements, despite her telling him that the allegations were false.

Seal also testified that the District Attorney’s Office threatened her with prosecution on two grounds if she didn’t cooperate with them: one for her son allegedly giving her marijuana and another for allegedly trading her brother-in-law guns for drugs.

“Did you take it as a threat” Clanton asked, “that if you didn’t testify the way they wanted you’d be prosecuted?”

“In hindsight, yes,” Seal said. “At the time, no.”...

Related coverage, with links


Former Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen has been cleared of all major charges first filed against him in 2008. - Arcata Eye MARCH 2012



  1. And allegedly her lawyer told her she had to perjure herself to get the deal the DA had offered her? The deal the DA offered when she had already recanted? The DA says
    hmmm, you told multiple stories, but if you tell one I like, you get a deal. Does this happen often?
    Lovely legal community here in Humboldt.



  3. Not dropped....dismissed.

    Big difference

    The DA, failed to inform the grand jury of evidence of innocence and failed to prove that there was any probable cause to file or act in the first place.

    He just succeeded in squandering a bundle of taxpayer money on yet another windmill hunt.


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