Friday, May 30, 2008

Gallegos gets quoted

But no mention of his role in the pot disaster.

Marijuana 'grow houses' are creating problems in Arcata, Calif.

Humboldt County Dist. Atty. Paul Gallegos said his office does not keep statistics on prosecutions for marijuana growing in Arcata. But Gallegos said he would prosecute any growers who posed a safety hazard to neighbors, a public nuisance or environmental harm.

"If you converted a house to grow dandelions, petunias and roses, my concerns would be the same," he said.


Ex-pot doc Ken Miller gets a quote, too. Dr Ken Miller, who issued the tenant's medical marijuana recommendation, said he did not recall the patient. But we remember Ken Miller.
Photo Source: Humboldt Review - Click on photo to enlarge
For a more complete story, check out Kevin Hoover's Humboldt Review "...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.

Other blogs:
SoHum Parlance: Arcata's grow houses make the L.A. Times
Arcata's growing reputation

Some say one in three houses in Arcata are growhouses. And if there's one (or more) in your neighborhood, what can you do about it?

B-b-but! Crime is down!

Latest News (just since this morning's paper...)
Traffic stops led to arrest
In three unrelated routine traffic stops Thursday night, Eureka law enforcement arrested four people for charges varying from possession of drugs and handguns to body armor.
Biker arrested on drug charges
While on patrol Thursday night, Eureka Police Department Sgt. Steve Watson witnessed a man riding his bike the wrong way on West Harris Street at Oregon Street.
Motel disturbance ends in arrests
Parolee arrest nets marijuana, gun

While in the paper...
Man arrested on charges of kidnapping, robbery
Jewelry stolen from Eureka store, public asked to help and more...

Rampant Growth of the Nanny State

It's not just seatbelts anymore. If your windshield wipers are on you have to have your headlights on. Pretty quick you can't talk on your cellphone when driving. They wanted to dictate what kind of lightbulbs you get to use, tell you to spay all of your pets by law and relegate any breeding to select puppymills.

The slippery slope that began with the much needed No Smoking areas is poised to become no smoking anywhere (cigarettes, that is, pot of course is completely sacred and doesn't apply.

And now this...
Move over, Rover: Proposed California law would prohibit pets from riding on drivers’ laps ...The California State Assembly recently passed a bill, AB 2233, which would prohibit a person from holding a live animal in their arms or on their lap while driving.

The bill is going to the state Senate, and if it passes and makes it to the Governor’s office to be signed into law, the new law would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2009.

A person who breaks the law could face a ticket of $35....

It's almost election day. How about you elect some candidates who understand that PEOPLE can think for themselves, and who pledge to abolish the Nanny State.

They can't and won't do anything about growhouses and illegal pot grows, meth, any number of things. But they (you lovely legislators) sure as shit can bust YOU, the innocent law abiding citizen. And the cops, instead of going after bad guys, are forced to go after YOU.

You should be so relieved now - all these dangerous drivers with Papillions (or bulldogs) on their laps will get what's coming to 'em.

Disgusting. Discuss.

Courage? Not.

It's the end of the line for Paul Gallegos' famous Palco Lawsuit. And he doesn't even have the guts to sign his name. Makes an underling sign it.


JOINTLY ADMINSTERED Case NO. 07-20027-C-11 Chapter 11

The People of the State of California file this Notice of Withdrawal of Proofs of Claim Nos. 560, 561 and 562 (the "Notice"), and withdraw, with prejudice to refiling, each of the following proofs of claim filed against Salmon creek, LLC, Scotia Pacific Company, LLC and The Pacific Lumber Company filed in these jointly administered bankruptcy cases:
Proof of Claim No. 560 filed in an unliquidated amount;
Proof of Claim No. 561 filed in an unliquidated amount; and
Proof of Claim No. 562 filed in an unliquidated amount.

Respectfully submitted this 22nd day of May, 2008

Paul V. Gallegos, SBN 161408
Humboldt County District Attorney

NO. Signed by poor
Christa K. McKimmy, SBV 215785
Deputy District Attorney
825 5th Street, 4th Floor
Eureka, CA 95501
Tel: (707) 445-7411
Attorneys for the People of the State of California

Case 07-20027 Document 3012 Filed in TXSB on 05/28/2008 Page 1 of 1

Nice. Make her wear it. Notice to any future readers who come here because they googled HER name... she did not lose this case. This case was brought by Tim Stoen, largely written, it is said, by a campaign supporter, it was pursued by Stoen and Gallegos with much pomp and circumstance, much bluster, a massive effort was put in place to keep this suit alive, and it never even got into court, never passed demurrer. Callegos appealed its tossing, and lost. Gallegos appealed to the California Supreme Court, and lost again. Christa McKimmy's misfortune is that she works for this man - and, while he takes credit for any wins, any losses are passed down to underlings. Paul Gallegos bears sole responsibility for bringing a POLITICALLY MOTIVATED SUIT that never had any merit. NEVER HAD ANY MERIT WHATSOEVER.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Some great stories

in the Arcata Eye this week - including an interview with a landlord who is getting rid of his rentals because of the 215 problems. Not online yet.
And this:
Planning Commission may challenge City Council on dispensary grows
Nip it in the bud A petition, produced by neighbors concerned about the takeover of downtown and residential Arcata by Big Marijuana, is circulating in Arcata
Dear grow house owner...

April 8, 2008 Eye Editorial: 'Stuck in legalism'
Hank's Blogthing Direct Action Here’s a photo from Arcata that’s making the e-mail rounds. - You know the sad thing, there, Hank, is that the illegal grower'll get off scott-free while the "graffiti artist" will end up prosecuted...

Kym's series on the Hacker Creek spill continues - I'll try to get all the links up pretty quick. I'm behind.

Worth repeating

Ever wanted to say "Thank You," but didn't?
Check out The Gratitude Campaign.
Spread the word. In remembrance. And gratitude.
Memorial Day events

Sunday, May 25, 2008

In Venezuela

The 2008 election gambles: part 1, Chavez’s angst

May first brought once again to the forefront the divided country that Venezuela has become. There were two “workers” marches convoked. One to praise Chavez, with dozens and dozens of buses coming from all around at tax payer expense, all passengers adequately uniformed in red, brandishing whatever slogan du jour. The other one was a more heteroclite affair made of actual workers, mostly from Caracas. But there was a difference this time: the opposition workers march was barred from its final outcome by an extraordinary display of police and soldiers that betrayed only one thing: chavismo is running scared.

It is clear to all that the December 2 referendum has changed the political course of the country. With Chavez aura of invincibility gone, not only his followers are less likely to put up with all of his antics, but a new type of opposition, now emboldened by its success believes that the end of the regime is not a farfetched hypothesis anymore. What the opposition is doing these days is the subject of a following post... read the rest

Friday, May 23, 2008

Again. Words Fail.

A measure of courage I can understand why he says he could not speak these words at the memorial without choking up. I cannot read them without choking up.


Photo Source
If ever you needed a good example of what is wrong with the SHUT EVERYTHING DOWN crowd, here it is.

You know the Kinetic Sculpture Race is this weekend. But did you know the Kinetic race is going to destroy the sand dunes? Is nothing sacred?

-----Original Message-----
From: manila-bounces at On Behalf Of Dan Edrich
Sent: Friday, May 23, 2008 8:50 AM
To: manila at
Subject: [Manila] Fw: immenent dune damage
To Salena and Teenship.
Suggested Reading; The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
                              The Negative Declaration
----- Original Message -----
From: redacted
To: Manila CSD
Cc: jwoolley at
Sent: Friday, May 23, 2008 8:24 AM
Subject: immenent dune damage

Board of Directors

Dear Chris,
It is now morning, the day before the Kinetic come through our dunes.
Your organizations have shown no preparedness to alleviate the potential of even more damage to already damaged dunes.
Yet, they have the gumption to set for a party- right in front of  a horribly damaged dune
Please make USERS aware of your and their legal requisites.
Our once stable system has been whored and perverted to the point that our trees are dying and our dunes are caving.
We need a moratorium to assess damage before we lose more topography.
Anyone can bring a dune down.
It takes thought and discipline to keep them healthy.

Sincerely, Dan Edrich

Tell me you're kidding.

From Petch, links to some great pics of previous years' sculptures. here

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Johanna Rodoni sworn in

Humboldt County Superior Court Judge John T. Feeney joked Tuesday morning that he didn't usually get such a nice reception when a standing-room only crowd leapt to its feet after Johanna Rodoni appeared to be sworn-in as 2nd District supervisor.... TS Johanna Rodoni sworn in before appreciative audience

A standing-room-only crowd welcomed Johanna Rodoni with two standing ovations Tuesday — one before and one after — as she was sworn in as the 2nd District representative to the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors.ER Rodoni sworn in amid standing ovation

The Board unanimously approved appointing Johanna to serve on the 12 committees and commissions for which Roger was the primary or alternate representative for the county.

Since she said she attended many of the meetings with her late husband, Johanna said she would be comfortable stepping in to take over the appointments.

“I would be very happy to serve where he served,” Johanna said.

She will attend one of her first meetings Friday when the Code Enforcement Task Force meets for the first time to take up the controversial issue of the county’s Code Enforcement Unit’s policies and procedures

No pun intended

The conversion of rental houses into grow houses is "a growing concern..."

A police raid of a Willow Creek rental house Monday reportedly uncovered hundreds of marijuana plants, cultivated in a large-scale growing operation.

The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office Drug Enforcement Unit served a search warrant on the house, located near Highway 96, which the agency reported had a number of modifications made to its electrical and heating systems to support 563 plants growing inside....

...Investigators found that the house -- modified without the owner's permission -- was no longer in livable condition, and will require extensive repair, Godsey said.

”From our perspective, what was more significant about this was the conversion of the house,” she said. “It brings a whole mess of problems with it.”

Godsey said the Sheriff's Office has witnessed an increase in Humboldt County homes being rented and converted to cultivate marijuana, which she said “certainly is a growing concern.”

Homeowners are often responsible for bearing the cost of repairs, Godsey said. “You can imagine the heartbreak of seeing your property damaged to that degree.”
TS Willow Creek home full of pot plants

She's right. Does anyone know of any instances where the pot growers have paid for the damage?


Blue Lake disbands police force
The Blue Lake City Council voted unanimously to disband its police department and accept a contract with the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday.


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


Friday, May 16, 2008

The second part

of The Redheaded Blackbelt's interview with Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman - Allman’s Plans: Part ll of an Interview with the Mendocino County Sheriff - another good read.

And, coincidentally, Kym breaks diesel spill story. ...a large diesel spill has occurred on Hacker Creek, tributary of Salmon Creek. ...KMUD is saying that the Dept. of Environmental Health is deeply concerned about the spill and wants Salmon Creek land owners to pull all water lines below the Hacker Creek confluence... the Humboldt Co. Sheriff’s Dept. that the source of the spill was a generator powering a dismantled indoor grow and they are now seeking a search warrant for the place.

The TS also has it. Diesel spill fouls SoHum creek, neighbors advised to withdraw water line

NO OUTRAGED posts for this spill. Pot grow, no Palco to blame, no fanfare. Not like this one. No comments like this one - We can expect to see a whole lot more wreckage such as this if the Arkley/Maxxam/Barnum developers get their way and turn Humboldt into Redding West. It’s time to turn them back, soundly, or all of our creeks and streams will permanently reek of diesel, the fish will go away forever, and our citizenry will be impoverished both economically and spiritually.

Uh huh.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

As promised

The Town Dandy on The Schizophrenic Second (District, that is.)

The state law that pertains to elections is minutely detailed, and can account for any number of situations involving the death of a candidate, depending on the office, the timing and the state of affairs that existed before the death. In the present case, the law is quite clear. The June election will go forward with Clendenen, Fennell and Roger Rodoni on the ballot. If Rodoni wins more than 50 percent of the vote, the governor will appoint someone to the position when the new supervisorial term begins next year. That someone would almost certainly be Johanna Rodoni.

...If no candidate wins more than 50 percent in June, there will be a November runoff election between Fennell and Clendenen. This happens even if Rodoni finishes in first place but fails to achieve a majority.

...On Monday, Johanna Rodoni sent a letter to the press urging her husband's constituency to turn out at the polls and vote Rodoni. (See a copy of the letter at the North Coast Journal Blogthing — The Rodoni campaign is back in full swing, as are the campaigns of his challengers....

So it's clear - this is not a write-in campaign. In this election, Rodoni supporters have to vote FOR Roger.


Too spectacularly warm, sunny and gorgeous to blog today.
Record breaking day
Temperatures in Eureka hit a new high today, sending locals out for warm sunshine and cold drinks.
Hitting 79 degrees, the temperature set a new record for the day, according to the National Weather Service.... Other parts of the county experienced even warmer weather, with the airport in McKinleyville reporting 91 degrees and Fortuna reporting the temperature rising to 95 degrees.

I hear 100 in Fieldbrook, someone said 100 in Trinidad, too.
105.5 in Fieldbrook
92 in Loleta
98 On the Van Duzen

S'posedta be even hotter tomorrow - that usually means the fog pulls in for the coast.

Gotta LOVE IT!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Meant to post this last week

Last week's Journal story: Jason Singleton Strikes Again - A new rash of ADA lawsuits has businesses scraping to comply, and get by

A letter to the editor (ER) Blanket ADA laws treat small businesses unfairly

Related post:
Predatory litigants - bad for business - bad for communities
More info:
TS Arctic Circle closes due to ADA lawsuit
NCJ Access and Dollars (3/01)

Amazing statistics

Redheaded blackbelt blogger, Kym has a great post - an interview with Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman, laying out the environmental damage caused by pot grows, diesel and oil contamination...

As I'm reading it, all I can think of is the disconnect between all the noise we hear from "Humboldt Watershed Council" and "Baykeeper" and Gallegos, all the writhing of hands over environmental damage caused by their favorite targets (the ones with money), and the absolutely deafening silence when it comes to this subject.

Nothing on Steve Schectman/Hedlund/Vilica LLC/Paradise Palms LLC's bulldozing plateaus, carving out roads - every time a big dope grow is revealed, not a peep. Not one.

Kym's talking about the enormous amounts of oil used by a 5000 marijuana plant underground facility that was powered by two 400 kw generators, and how that oil is disposed of, and what that means for the Eel River.

Where are those champions of the environment?

End run?

Let me guess - they're pushing for Plan A.

Action Alert: "Healthy Humboldt" (aka Humboldt Watershed Council's project) Meetings With County Supervisors

"Democracy Unlimited DUHC" and the "Healthy Humboldt Coalition" (aka Humboldt Watershed Council's project) are organizing meetings with County Supervisors Jimmy Smith and Bonnie Neely for our constituents to engage their representatives regarding the General Plan Update.

Bonnie Neely ˆ 6:00pm Wednesday, May 14 (District 4)
Jimmy Smith ˆ 6:00pm Wednesday, May 21 (District 1)

Well, no point in meeting with Woolley, I guess, "Healthy Humboldt" hopes to soon be sitting in his chair.

Credit where it's due

Take the time to read this piece from THE AUSTRALIAN, you'll be glad you did. Well, some of you anyway. Others may need meds afterwards.
h/t: KT

Voter dilemma in 2nd District

From the TS editorial: The governor's appointment of Johanna Rodoni to fill out her late husband's term as 2nd District supervisor -- until Jan. 5, 2009 -- has created a quandary for the June 3 election.

...Roger Rodoni's name remains on the ballot and his campaign remains active, urging voters to vote for a candidate who is no longer able to serve....

...if Roger Rodoni gets one more vote than 50 percent in the three-way primary, the governor would be compelled to appoint Johanna Rodoni on Jan. 5 to a new, shortened term that would be up for a vote again in 2010. leaves the two surviving candidates on the ballot dueling with a ghost. Not only are Clif Clendenen and Estelle Fennell compelled to speak no ill of Roger Rodoni now that he is gone, but they are on shaky ground if they try to contrast themselves to Johanna Rodoni, since she is not on the ballot and has no record as an elected official.

Yep. You can imagine the monkeywrench this whole thing has thrown into the Ork camp. Running two candidates was to ensure a runoff, with the sole intent to get rid of Rodoni. Now he is gone. Their key platform is gone. Who do they have left to attack but each other. Or run on their merits.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Rumor is

The predatory litigious "Humboldt Baykeeper" is going after Sun Valley Bulb Farms.

Will they get go-away money? Or will Sun Valley stand up to the extortionists?

He leaves in the kidnapping charge - 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


”We think the evidence warrants kidnapping,” he (Paul Gallegos) said. “We respectfully disagree with the court.”

And now Gundersen faces 14 new counts

Looks like Gallegos has learned something after all. Because this is a far cry from Martinez-Hernandez. In that case Gallegos charged the guy with one continuous count for what was estimated to be 1,900 acts plus additional counts... back then, the Times Standard reported that "The Sheriff's Department said investigating deputies found reason to believe Martinez-Hernandez had sexual intercourse with the child 1,900 times over a six or seven year period. Deputies also determined there were about 1,000 counts of crimes like fondling and oral copulation. The child was about 5 when the abuse began about seven years ago.

"Gallegos has said the continuous act charge was made to avoid the necessity of proving each count and to spare the child from testifying."

The Sheriff's Department provided to the Times Standard fifteen other cases with far less serious conduct. In each the guy got well in excess of a life term (like 29 consecutive 15-years-to-life terms). Paul's response was that the guy pleaded to everything that he was charged with so it wasn't plea bargaining and that the U.S. Attorney was going to charge him for being an illegal immigrant who was once deported and that this guy would never get out of jail. In short, Paul admitted no error in charging or judgment.


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


Monday, May 12, 2008

What’s in a name?

Greenspirit Dr. Patrick Moore has an interesting piece up - if you haven't visited Greenspirit before, the link is in the sidebar. It's a unique perspective on the environmental(ists) tactics.

HBN Exposed "Behind the Curtain: Healthy Building Network is the Same Old Greenpeace"
Who is HBN?

At a recent builder and architect conference in Boston, HBN representatives introduced themselves as members of “a coalition of architects, designers and healthcare professionals.”

But branding isn’t everything. Let’s look behind the curtain of HBN senior campaigners....

Thursday, May 08, 2008

If it doesn't get tossed

***URGENT UPDATE/ALERT! This case was TOSSED by the Judge - never made it to trial,
☛ ER
Feeney said the indictments the grand jury handed down to Douglas and Zanotti in December 2007 weren’t supported by probable cause. Insufficient evidence regarding the former leaders’ alleged failure to oversee other law enforcement was also presented to the grand jury, Feeney said, and instructions given on “exigent circumstances” were inadequate.
The grand jury should have also been instructed on justifiable homicide by law enforcement officials, Feeney said.

If Gallegos' case against Douglas and Zanotti actually makes it to trial, Douglas is going to need help with the legal bills. Looks like some help is already on the way. Gallegos continues to cost this County money it can't afford to lose.

California police lend Douglas a hand

The City of Eureka recently sent out an impassioned plea to hundreds of police chiefs and law enforcement agencies and associations seeking help funding a legal defense for its former police chief, David Douglas, who is facing involuntary manslaughter charges stemming from the 2006 police shooting of Cheri Lyn Moore.

The results have been immediate. A defense fund created to field donations, which racked up less than $2,000 in its first three months, hauled in more than $11,000 in about three weeks, with contributions coming from law enforcement agencies, associations and individual officers throughout the state.

Douglas and Lt. Tony Zanotti were indicted by a criminal grand jury on Dec. 3, 2007, for their decision-making roles in the April 14, 2006, incident...

...While Douglas and Zanotti, the incident's commanding officers, face charges, none of the shooters were indicted, which many legal and police experts have called unprecedented.

...The Eureka City Council voted unanimously after the indictments to allocate $75,000 from city coffers to help with Douglas' legal defense bills, but the letter sent last month indicates that money is all but gone.

”The case presents unique issues and opens completely untrod ground that demands significant legal work, however, and that money is nearly gone,” states the letter, which was signed by Douglas, City Manager David Tyson and current Police Chief Garr Nielsen.

The letter also indicates Eureka will be hard-pressed to offer more money from its general fund.

”Like many cities in the rapidly evolving financial meltdown across the country, to state that Eureka's economic condition is fragile is an understatement,” the letter continues. “The city's emergency reserve funds are rapidly being depleted due to our bleak state and local economy... The city simply does not have the ability to carry the costs of this case further. Your help is needed immediately.”

The California Police Chiefs Association was one of the first to answer the call, sending a $5,000 check to the fund.

Reached Wednesday, Vacaville police chief and past association president Richard Word said law enforcement agencies are eager to contribute, both to support Douglas and Zanotti and to avoid the legal precedent their convictions would set.

”The potential impacts could be devastating to law enforcement,” Word said. “We're concerned that this could have a chilling affect on commanders who respond to these scenes, which is their job, and make these judgment calls, which is their job.”

Word worries that convictions of Douglas and Zanotti could result in police chiefs taking critical incident decisions out of the hands of their better-trained commanders or, conversely, police chiefs refusing to review tactical plans because of the possibility that doing so could make them criminally liable.

”That's what bugs us,” Word said. “I know there are police officers that commit wrongs and violate the law, and they should be prosecuted. This is totally different.”

...While the $75,000 pledged by the council and the $13,000 in the fund might seem like a hefty sum, they pale in comparison to the hundreds of thousands some experts have estimated Douglas' defense will cost if the case goes all the way through trial.

...One lesson already learned from the situation, Word said, is the need for all acting police chiefs to have insurance coverage.
While Zanotti is being covered by the Peace Officers Research Association Legal Defense Fund, Douglas is not, as he had retired and was operating as police chief under an hourly contract with the city at the time of Moore's death. Thus, he was not eligible for coverage under the fund.

”We talked at our last (California Police Chief's Association) meeting about how all chiefs need to make sure they have legal defense fund coverage of some sort,” Word said.

Look. You've got Bill Bragg on Douglas' side. He knows his stuff. And he has Gallegos' number. This is a good thing.

To contribute to city's defense fund for David Douglas: Send checks made out to the City of Eureka, with David Douglas written in the “for” line, to City Hall, 531 K St., Eureka, CA 95502. Councilman Larry Glass said the checks would only be cashed if needed.
Or Donate via PayPal
(That link can be reached through the City of Eureka website - here)

Related coverage Links to articles, letters and Op-Eds (as complete a compilation of articles as I can assemble)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Johanna appointed to finish Roger's term

TS Johanna Rodoni appointed to finish husband's term
ER Governor appoints Johanna Rodoni to supervisor seat
Hank Schwarzenegger Appoints Johanna Rodoni
Jack BREAKING NEWS: Johanna Rodoni appointed to fill 2nd District seat
Mirror Something new to argue about
Eric SoHum Parlance: Johanna was appointed
heraldo Gov appoints Johanna Rodoni
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger today announced the appointment of Johanna Rodoni to the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors, representing District II.

(Johanna) Rodoni currently is a member of the Humboldt County Fair Board of Directors, California Cattlemen’s Association, Humboldt County CattleWomen’s Association, Humboldt County Farm Bureau and The Redcrest Grange. In 1996, she joined the Fortuna Chamber of Commerce and served on the board of directors from 2004 to 2007. From 1998 to 2006, Rodoni served as chair for the Humboldt County Fish and Game Advisory Commission and, from 1991 to 1993, served as president for the Humboldt County CattleWomen’s Association.

“I am honored to be in a position to take up where Roger left off,” said Johanna Rodoni. “I will use my years of service within the community to address important issues facing Humboldt County and I look forward to serving with the same honest character as my husband.”

TS Campaign urging votes for Rodoni
Supervisor Roger Rodoni's name will remain on the June 3 primary ballot and his supporters are urging 2nd District residents to vote for the late incumbent...

...The decision to continue campaigning for Roger Rodoni to win the June 3 election is with the full knowledge and approval of Johanna Rodoni, his campaign committee members said

In case you missed it

Failed Gallegos lawsuit one more obstacle for community to overcome

Dear Editor,

On April 24, the California Supreme Court put an end to District Attorney Gallegos’ lawsuit against the Pacific Lumber Company. This, after five years of litigation including: 1) having the suit thrown out by the trial court for failure to meet minimum standards to be allowed to go to trial; and 2) a unanimous decision by the appeals court explaining at length why the suit could have no merit as filed. It was a political prosecution and citizens should look at the nature and cost of this exercise.

Gallegos touted himself as courageous in this fight — but no, this quality was lacking as seen in his decision to duck charging the Arkley/Glass matter, sending it to the attorney general instead. The fight was also billed as one against corruption, but the courts resoundingly disagreed.

The most obvious cost is the scores of thousands of dollars in salaries and other expenses paid for by taxpayers. More subtle is the opportunity cost of having these prosecutorial resources not spent on other things — for instance, sexual, child or elder abuse cases, innovative programs to fight drug abuse, or consumer fraud. These forms of corruption are more insidious, and strike at everyone.

The greatest cost, however, was the reckless shredding of the fabric of the Humboldt County community. The greater the power, the greater the need for humility and restraint in its exercise. With PALCO now prostrate in bankruptcy, the lingering bitterness engendered by the Gallegos lawsuit will be one more obstacle for our community to overcome.

Paul Hagen

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Blue Lake to look for new police chief

Blue Lake to look for new police chief
The Blue Lake City Council unanimously decided Monday night to move forward on establishing a one-year contract with the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office while also keeping the ultimate goal of having a city police force with a new police chief.
Following multiple meetings with residents expressing concerns and interest in keeping the city's current two-officer police force, the council made a long-awaited decision.

Councilman Marvin Samuels said he believed in community-based policing, and several other council members echoed his feelings.

”It makes for a better town and more effective law enforcement,” Samuels said. “Developing this model for Blue Lake, though, can't be done overnight....
...While many of the approximately 40 residents present Monday night seemed satisfied with the council's actions, they continued to express their concerns about the council's need to stay on track in the search for a new chief, the restructuring of the city's management of the police department, and ensuring that there would be a citizen's advisory board that would be apart of the hiring process...
Blue Lake to look for new police chief

Monday, May 05, 2008

Predatory litigants - bad for business - bad for communities

Arctic Circle closes due to ADA lawsuit

Eureka's Arctic Circle franchise has closed its doors after the restaurant was sued for noncompliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Jack Williams, who has owned the franchise with his wife, Peggy, since 1989, said the couple decided to close the business Tuesday because they can not afford the renovations required by the lawsuit.

According to an Arctic Circle spokesperson, the suit was filed by local attorney Jason K. Singleton, who has filed similar suits in recent years against a number of local establishments, including Village Pantry, Broadway Cinema, the Eureka Chamber of Commerce and several others.

The Eureka restaurant had been in business since 1967. Arctic Circle reportedly settled the suit out of court.

You remember Jason Singleton? Access and Dollars (3/01) "The stuff that Singleton brought forth was so minute," said Johnson. "One thing was a grab bar that was 1/8th of an inch too low. Another was the location of a light that blinks when the fire alarm is going off in case a person is deaf. I think it was supposed to be something like 48 inches from the floor, and it was 52.

"Then there was a problem with the table lamp," Johnson said. "The knob that you turn it on with was supposed to be 5/8ths of an inch in circumference for people who have arthritis and such, and it was only 3/8th of an inch."

Back then, first the defendants tended to be deep-pocket corporate chain stores, restaurants and motels, including those operated by franchisees. Among the known past lawsuit targets are Gottschalk's, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Marie Callender's, Days Inn and the former Thunderbird Inn (Best Western) -- all in Eureka. More recently defendants have included government agencies; there are pending lawsuits against the county, College of the Redwoods and the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation and Conservation District. And at least one non-profit is on the list, the Eureka Chamber of Commerce.

But the lawsuits against locally owned, private businesses with no deep pockets -- including at least one mom-and-pop operation -- are what has the business community quaking in its boots. No one is immune. Defendants with pending or recently settled ADA action include the Broadway Cinema, Café Marina, Mad River Community Hospital -- and the tiny Café Waterfront in Old Town Eureka....
read the rest...

Interesting lInk provided by an anon on the TS story - Singleton gets his own page. If you have knowledge of the abuse of an ADA claim or lawsuit, or unethical, unlawful, inappropriate or unfair business practices by an attorney or claimant... contact these guys - ADAaccountability and Citizens Against Predatory Lawsuits. Whenever possible, please provide the case number and court in which a lawsuit was filed. You can fax information toll free to (888) 453-1262.

According to this site, - Singleton - With 97 ADA Lawsuits filed, his total demands were over $13 Million. There are now 241 filed actions. Unclear when this was last updated.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Maybe they have room for a like minded DA!

Cops May Get Assault Weapons in Chicagostan Arming officers with assault rifles would make Chicago look like a developing nation.

Fifty-four shootings in two weekends. Shot-up bodies recovered in groups of three and five. Is this Ramadi? Basra? No.

Welcome to Chicago.

After a recent outbreak of gun-related violence, Mayor Richard Daley is now pushed into supporting a plan by new Police Superintendent Jody Weis to arm 13,000 Chicago police officers with assault rifles. Depending on how many weapons are eventually deployed, this may develop into the largest militarization of police patrol officers in United States history. If the department arms 10,000 of their officers with M4s, the police will have 9,900 more assault rifles in Chicago than the U.S. Marines presently have in Fallujah, Iraq.
h/t: KT

Paul Gallegos would fit right in.

Walking a timeworn path to office

The Times Standard reports on the appointment options.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Another one!

ER CHP seeks information on man suspected of evading police, driving truck into river
Just last week, there was another one... ER Hoopa man drowns after fleeing, trying to swim across river
Only six days prior, a Redway man drowned in the Eel River after fleeing from a sheriff's deputy. Andrew Jackson Gressett, 24, reportedly ran down a 60-foot embankment on April 20 and drowned in the river after fleeing from deputies, who pulled him over on State Route 254 (also known as Avenue of the Giants). TS Redway man flees, drowns in river

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Just curious

How's the DA going to handle code enforcement?

Looks like one of his DDAs lives off the grid. Wonder if she has all her permits in a row? And if not...

Recently, she ...moved from a comfortable home in East Sacramento to a cabin without electricity or running water near Ferndale in Humboldt County. Their three-room cabin, on 80 acres that they purchased in 2003, perches on a 1,300-foot-high ridge. Through their large windows, they can gaze at the Pacific Ocean, the mouth of the Eel River and Humboldt Bay.

But life often gets in the way of idyllic ocean gazing. Just getting to their cabin is a chore: Driving three miles from Ferndale on a steep, twisting stretch of road known locally as “The Wildcat,” they must turn onto a dirt road and travel a quarter-mile, then hike the last 150 yards to their house by foot along an often-muddy trail. Once they’re home, the work doesn’t stop: They have to generate their own heat and power and supply their own water. How do they do it? They warm the cabin and cook their meals with wood, finding an abundant supply on their land. “Gathering wood is really a lot of work,” says (her husband), 50. “But hey, I’m in better shape now than when I was going to Alhambra Athletic Club.”

Water comes from a spring that (he) dug himself. Around Thanksgiving, an old septic tank on the property failed; they now use what (he) delicately describes as “alternative waste-handling approaches” that include composting. “This simple system works great for us,” he says, “and it feels good not to waste the water used to flush.”

They get hot water from a small gas water heater powered by propane gas. To refill the propane tank, (he) drives to Fortuna, about 20 minutes away. The family also generates its own electricity, using a system of spinning wind turbines and rooftop panels that absorb sunlight and convert it to electricity that then is stored in batteries.

The McKimmy family lives “off the grid,” going without connections to public utilities such as electricity, water and sewage.
Source 4/06

Oh my GOD! Sprawl!

Oh, you Gallegos haters!

Oh it's just the Gallegos haters. It's not that Paul has done anything WRONG! Poor Paul. He can't do anything right. they just hate him no matter what.

Let's review.

If you read Paul Hagen's My Word in today's Times-Standard you received confirmation that Gallegos' suit was "politically motivated," Read that "filed at the behest of his handlers."

Now ask yourself, once again - If Paul's supporters and backers were the Aryan Brotherhood, and they wanted him to go after Kobe Bryant "get that black man" - would that be ok with you?

Now some people thought Kobe was guilty. Some defended him. Just like Palco. Some hate Palco. Some defend them.

Would it be ok? NO SANE PERSON WOULD SAY YES, yet Gallegos' defenders see no problem at all with him filing a suit, against the recommendations of the professionals in the DA's Office, whose knowledge of the law vastly exceeds his own, and FOR his backers. Trying to find a way to make it fly. And failing spectacularly, albeit so many years later that no one cares, to even get his case into court. Failed after multiple attempts to rewrite it and make it work.

His history of bad judgement, and of filing charges capriciously - as in the case of Penny O'Gara (to send a message), Sean Marsh (to send a message), and yes, the Palco suit (t send a message), the dismissal of felony charges against a campaign contributors son... the hiring of Tim Stoen... the firing and loss of virtually ALL the experienced prosecutors in his office... the corrupt campaign manager, the plagiarized My Words...

What's to like? And that is only part of the picture. It's not that any of these things were made up. HE DID IT ALL TO HIMSELF.

Face the facts. Stop making excuses for him like he is a little boy who needs protection for hiding his peas under the table.

If he worked for you, you would have fired him by now. For incompetence. For being late for meetings. For failing to show up for meetings.... long before you even got to the big stuff, and there's lots of that on the record now.

THINK! He DOES work for you.

Paul Hagen's "My Word" in TS today

worth reading - Why DA's Palco suit was ill-advised

Former environmental prosecutor Paul Hagen explains the flaws in Gallegos' Palco suit, the reason why it failed to make it into court, what was wrong with the reasoning behind Gallegos' Appeal of that rejection, the subsequent rejection of his Appeal (made a published Opinion), and the CA Supreme Court's final nail in the Palco suit coffin, a final rejection.

The Appeals Court found that the state has failed to prove, on its third try, a reasonable possibility that the (complaint)'s defect can be cured by amendment.”

Hagen's own credentials dwarf Gallegos' - and he notes: I would like to make it clear that I in no way approve of Palco's behavior. I personally prosecuted them twice criminally (obtaining literally every last penny available as penalties under the 15 counts I charged collectively) and once civilly (against Scopac, actually), receiving $80,000 in a settlement, $35,000 of which I sent to schools in the Van Duzen watershed.

And I found Palco's behavior in the recall election astounding and shameful, an incredibly bad set of decisions to fund petition signers and more in an effort to drive out an elected official.

That said, Gallegos' decision to prosecute Palco was a political one, make no mistake. Political prosecutions are never a good idea.

Within days of taking office, Gallegos directed his chief investigator to conduct an investigation. When his investigators reported they could not find evidence of a crime, the suit was filed civilly instead. The day before it was filed, a member of a local watchdog organization sat in the DA's library and read the complaint.

Paul Hagen is one of the rare few with the courage to speak out. It cost him his job.

ER Failed Gallegos lawsuit one more obstacle for community to overcome 5/3/08