Thursday, August 14, 2008

Day 4 - UPDATED

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

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☛ TS Gundersen's wife re-takes the stand
This morning, Gallegos walked Seal through a transcript of her testimony at the April preliminary hearing, repeatedly asking her if she had answered his questions honestly. She testified that she was under emotional duress, doesn't remember much of the preliminary hearing and was told to testify in accordance with what she told investigators in the Feb. 8 interview.

☛ TS Gundersen's wife says she lied to investigators, on stand at prelim
She also testified at various points Thursday that she was simply repeating things Gundersen's ex-wife had told her, that she was telling investigators what they wanted to hear and that she was angry with Gundersen at the time.

”As a police officer, you are aware that giving false evidence is a crime?” Gallegos asked.

”Yes,” Seal responded.

Gallegos also questioned Seal about her testimony during Gundersen's preliminary hearing, walking her through transcripts of the proceedings and repeatedly asking her if she remembered answering his questions, and if she was honest. She testified that she didn't remember, or only vaguely remembered, many parts of the interview and preliminary hearing, saying she was under a lot of stress.

Seal also testified that she told her attorney Michael Crowley before testifying at the preliminary hearing that her husband had not raped her. She said Crowley yelled at her, telling her she didn't have the right not to testify, and that it was in her best interest to repeat what she told investigators.

”I felt stuck,” Seal testified.

”You chose to testify falsely against your husband?” Gallegos later asked.

”Yes,” Seal replied.

”So, in your mind it's OK to lie under oath?” Gallegos asked.

”No it's not,” Seal replied. “I felt I was under a great deal of stress and I was being badgered.”


☛ ER DA grills alleged victim on stand
The battery of questions by Gallegos directed at Seal focused on specific details about alleged rape by Gundersen she had brought up in the past, but which she now testified were false, at times “sarcastic” and a result of misunderstandings.

Those misunderstandings included conversations with her attorney during the preliminary hearing, Michael Crowley, where he told her she had to stick with her past statements despite her telling him the allegations were false, she testified.

She also testified that she kept being told “over and over” again by investigators that if Gundersen had sex with her while she was asleep and taking Lunesta, that it constituted rape.

“I was under the belief, black-and-white, that if I was under the influence of Lunesta it constituted rape,” she testified.

Seal recanted a long list of allegations she made against Gundersen, including that he raped her and that he was more aroused sexually when she was sleeping.

Intermixed in all this, Gallegos called up previous statements, and when Seal denied them, Gallegos asked if she lied.

Although Seal testified that she lied in many of those instances, she said she had tried to tell investigators, her attorney and Gallegos that she wanted to recant her allegations, but all her pleas were apparently ignored..

At one point, Gallegos asked her to name specific times when she told him or other investigators that the allegations were untrue, to which Seal testified that she talked to him on the phone and also District Attorney’s Office Investigator Wayne Cox.

Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Detective Troy Garey had testified several days earlier that Seal denied a rape (SART) examination on Feb. 8, because she changed her story to say the sex with Gundersen the previous day had been consensual and not otherwise as earlier stated.

Gallegos asked Seal if she thought investigators would take her allegations as a joke, as she testified that she tried to tell everyone she was being sarcastic.

Seal testified that she didn’t expect the investigators, who were Gundersen’s ex-wife’s friends, to take her statements seriously and arrest him.

“What part of the joke made you cry?” Gallegos pressed her about the taped interview.

“I wanted to leave,” Seal said. “I was confused.”


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

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5 comments:

  1. You can take this off - or reposted it please ... just wanted to show it to you Rose (et al) if you didn't see it ...
    DT

    Pot sweep costs DOJ $347,000
    By JOHN C. OSBORN , The Eureka Reporter
    Published: Aug 12 2008,

    http://www.eurekareporter.com/article/080812-pot-sweep-costs-doj-347000

    The California Department of Justice spent at least $347,000 in its role in the weeklong drug raid dubbed Operation Southern Sweep in June.

    The operation brought about 450 federal, state and local law enforcement personnel together to bust an alleged commercial marijuana grow operation connected to a single group in Humboldt County between June 24 and 28.

    According to a public records request by The Eureka Reporter for the costs incurred in Operation Southern Sweep, the DOJ allocated $347,202 toward the operation.

    Of that, an estimated $131,574 was spent on personnel, $183,894 on overtime, $26,283 in expenses, such as travel and lodging, and $5,451 on equipment, the request response stated.

    Salary costs are based on the total hours worked by sworn officers at the Special Agent top pay grade ($7,341 a month) and the middle pay grade for non-sworn personnel.

    The salary costs do not include any incurred by management personnel because the time spent on specific projects is not maintained for these employees, though the costs are estimated to be nominal, the request response stated.

    The Eureka Reporter also sent out Freedom of Information Act requests to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Postal Service, Drug Enforcement Agency and Internal Revenue Service — all agencies involved in the operation.

    The IRS denied the request, as the records could not be found.

    Even if found, the IRS stated in a response letter that the information would be exempt from public disclosure on a number of grounds, including a claim that disclosure would “reveal law enforcement techniques, procedures and guidelines protected” by the Freedom of Information Act.

    The Eureka Reporter plans to appeal the decision as allowed under the Freedom of Information Act.

    The FBI denied an initial request for information, stating that any request of this nature should be directed to a field office.

    Another request sent to the FBI San Francisco Field Office has garnered no response.

    The FBI couldn’t be reached for comment.

    Requests to the U.S. Postal Service and DEA are still pending.

    Agents raided 23 locations across the county during the sweep, including two large chunks of property.

    The raids mainly occurred in Southern Humboldt, in areas including Redway, Whitethorn and Garberville.

    Agents also raided one alleged grow house in Arcata.

    The operation was the result of a two-year investigation by the DOJ, and netted about 16,000 marijuana plants, $200,000 in cash and 53 firearms, which included assault rifles.

    No arrests have been made as of yet, but officials said in past interviews that it could take months before anyone behind the commercial grows is brought before a judge.

    (John C. Osborn can be reached at josborn@eurekareporter.com or 707-269-7445.)

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  2. DT why are you more obsessed with pot than you are interested in this poor woman is being mistreated by the system. Seems that your priorities are a greatly out of whack.

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  3. This "poor woman" is abusing the system. I hope her immunity is cancelled and she is prosecuted for all of the crimes she has committed including illegal gun and drug possession, perjury and obstruction of justice. She and Gundersen both had possession of those drugs and guns and they should both go to prison for it.

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  4. I don't think her immunity extends to perjury. I could be wrong.

    But she is maintaining that she has been railroaded into this, and there are indications in the early reports that she was trying to rein it back in - such as the report of the statements she made at the SART exam.

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  5. Immunity does not extend to perjury. The funny thing is, by the time PVG immunized her, she had already begun to recant. She is then given immunity, on the premise that she tell one of the stories she told, and not the others? If that is what happened, if she was given use immunity (testimony cannot be used against her) to tell a particular story, that's bad. If she was given transactional immunity (you can't be prosectuted for any crime you disclose) that's a little better, suggests the DA just wanted her to testify. But in either case, if you have to compel/immunize your complaining witness, there's a problem. The problem is the DA had a situation where a rape complaint was made against a police officer by a police officer. If the DA walks away from that, it could look bad. On the other hand, if the DA goes to trial with an unwilling, recanting badgered and bullied rape victim, that could look bad. Add the rest of the accessories this case comes with, and it looks bad. Still, PVG might
    land a conviction- the defense lawyer is Clanton, and the defendant is Dave Gunderson. The presumption of innocence only goes so far. On the bright side, Clanton can visit his dad when he's working on Gunderson's appeal.

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