Monday, October 05, 2015

Finally some information on the Arreaga murders with UPDATES

Jury in Fieldbrook double homicide case second trial finds Arreaga not guilty on both counts - John Chiv/Words Worth 2/25/2016
Up till now, next to nothing has been known about the reason for the double murder... the usual stories didn't surface. Finally, some answers. And from the sound of it, this is about to get much more interesting, as well as sickening and disheartening.

Arrega's ex girlfriend (Carly Michaels) takes the stand; as she testifies Arreaga puts his head down - John Chiv/Words Worth
There were some key moments in her testimony such as her saying that she heard two pops inside the trailer at the time Shavonne Hammers was inside. That she heard Arreaga shout "Don't go in there, my girl is in there." And that Shavonne Hammers thanked Arreaga for shooting Harley Hammers, her husband.

Michaels did not witness who shot Harley Hammers and Angel Tully.
Blood trail found leading near one of the victims in Arreaga case; possible gunpowder residue on Tully's back - John Chiv/Words Worth
HCSO detectives and Coroner testify in Arreaga trial on day 3 - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 28, 2015
Jason Michael Arreaga

HCSO photo via LoCo

Two Double-Murder Trials Begin - Thadeus Greenson/The Journal
For the first time in recent memory, the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office is in the process of simultaneously trying separate double-murder cases.

Prosecutors gave opening arguments Sept. 24 in the case against Jason Michael Arreaga, the 30-year-old Lucerne man with a violent past who stands accused of gunning down Harley Hammers and Angel Tully in front of a Fieldbrook home last fall. Then, four days later, special prosecutor Paul Sequeira began the process of selecting a jury to hear the case against Jason Anthony Warren, who is accused of murdering Dorothy Ulrich and Suzanne Seemann in 2012.

Jury selection may take awhile in the Warren case, which will see full days of trial testimony and is expected to stretch into December. Meanwhile, the Arreaga case, which is being handled by Deputy District Attorney Zach Curtis, is expected to conclude by early November.

As deputies described finding the victims, the sobbing and pain of the loved ones in the courtroom brought home the loss more than any testimony could - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 26, 2015
"We need you to tell the truth" and ""You understand that this is a murder trial. You are one of the main witnesses." - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 26, 2015
On cross examination, Chavonne Hammers get tripped up by defense and questions about motives arise - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 25, 2015

Chavonne Hammers said she did not remember telling Angel Tully that "if she did not back off from her boyfriend and her kids, bad things would happen?"

"She started coughing and blood started coming out of her mouth, she started gurgling." - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 25, 2015

Before Chavonne Hammers, the People's first witness, started her testimony yesterday in the Jason Arreaga case, Deputy District Attorney Zack Curtis showed her a copy of the immunity agreement she had signed on Wednesday, September 23....
A press release shows Chavonne Hammers did not tell the complete truth about the McDonald incident and Harley Hammers - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 25, 2015
In her testimony yesterday in the Arrega case, Chavonne Hammers said she left Harley Hammers after he let her get arrested in the McDonald parking lot for a stolen vehicle.

To paraphrase her, these were not her exact words, but she basically insiniuated he let her take the rap.

According to the press release, Harley Hammers was also arrested....

Related ◼ Home Broken into Multiple Times—Property Including BMW Stolen
Harley Hammers is upset with Mr. Arreaga; Ms. Tully is upset with Chavonne Hammers. Somewhere in there they start to advance towards Mr. Arreaga, he shoots Angel Tully in the chest and he shoots her again." - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 24, 2015

... Chavonne Hammers...Carly Michaels...Jason Arreaga (the accused)...Gary Backues...Angie Ehlers...Harley Hammers (victim)...Angel Tully (victim)...

Open and shut case or reasonable doubt? Two very convincing opening arguments in Fieldbrook double homicide jury trial - John Chiv/Words Worth Sep 24, 2015
Both sides agree on many of the facts and the basic version leading up to the double homicide; the difference being that the People hope to show that the evidence points to Arreaga as the man who murdered Harley Hammers and Angel Tully but the defense raises questions about other suspects, their motives, in particular the People's first and key witness today, Chavonne Hammers....

"Mr. Arreaga is an easy person to blame in this case. He is an outsider and a large man." (Defense atty Ms. Holmquist said)

"By all accounts this was supposed to be a quick road trip, see the Humboldt Redwoods, do a favor for a neighbor. It resulted in Mr. Arreaga becoming intertwined in the Humboldt underworld and being arrested for a double homicide."

* Edited to correct the spelling of Chavonne Hammers' name.


  1. First, I was in court and saw Mr. Chiv. Not all of these statements are correct. Very incorrect as per some. There is quite a bit of hyperbole and false reporting here. That's upsetting to read and then having people such as yourself pass it along.

  2. Ms. Rhodes, you commented on my blog and now here again. You are alleging a lot of stuff and making incorrect claims.

    I am reprinting my response on my blog below. You need to be careful yourself before making defamatory statements that leave you open to possible legal action.

    For someone who is supposed to be in mourning, your actions smack of a publicity stunt.

    Ms. Rhodes, today was the first time I saw you in court. I only gave you my card on the request of Ms. Tully's sister. While I am not perfect, I have been reporting on court cases for a while.

    It has been distracting and difficult to hear at times because of the family talking over witnesses and the attorneys. In no case, has the audience been so vocal. As for getting my facts right, this is an emotional case for you and while I understand that, sometimes family members of either side react as you do. That does not indicate I do not have my facts right.

    Mr. Curtis did say in his opening that Harley collapsed into a pile of debris. I did not state Ms. Michaels and Mr. Hammers went anywhere together. You are confusing Ms Hammers with Mr. Hammers. You were not in court yesterday.

    I will not print anymore comments from you which are bordering on defamatory allegations about me and based on emotional reactions.

  3. Say what you like Mr. Chiv. Our family was NOT loud whatsoever. I was in court both days. You may be upset that I had something to say about your mistakes...which were few of many.
    This is not a publicity stunt as you are claiming. This is someone who cares very much about journalistic integrity! Its not an emotional reaction when you are just reading "news" after you have the audacity to give our family your cards to follow you then a plethora of mistakes. I only named a few. Again, not emotional, just factual.
    In your articles, you can't even decide how to spell Chavonne's name.
    I do thank you for threatening legal action against a victims family member, however, for it to be libel, it would have to be untrue as to what I said. I gave my opinion on your accounts, which many were false. Anyone else in that courtroom would refute your account of events of what was said here as well.
    Integrity is all I expect. Thank you.

    We are in joining.

    1. Ms. Rhodes, you have a lot of anger.
      It was not a packed courtroom yesterday. Today, there were more people.

      For someone who does not know me, your reaction and continued vitriol towards me is telling.

      Being a family member does not give you the right to be abusive and a bully. Nor does it give you a right to claim whatever your opinion is as fact.

      You are angry and lashing out. I have many families grateful for what I do.

      If it isn't a publicity stunt, why are you online all day focusing on a stranger.

      What you are really angry about is that some of the testimony does not paint someone you care about in a flattering light.

      Dont think your being a family member gives you the right to harass me or be disrespectful. Learn some manners from the Tully family.

      We are not given spelling of witnesses names. It is spelled correctly today. You are so busy ranting at me that you refuse to admit you can be wrong.

  4. Note: duplicate comments deleted. It's a Blogger glitch.

    I guess if you differ with Chiv's account, be specific as to the details. Your remarks then become part of the record. If you have specific information that should be made known, get hold of the DA. (The new DA is not like the old DA.)

  5. Oh, don't worry. I'll be speaking with the DA regarding this. There are many inconsistencies. But Mr. Chiv wants to paint me as angry at him. I never said I was. I asked for integrity. I could go through every line of each article and point out each discrepancy. However, I am grieving. The only one here that's having a fit is Mr. Chiv. He wants to paint our family as loud? Not so. He was sitting on the opposite side of the courtroom and we were all quiet. The DA will know tomorrow that Mr. Chiv is now attempting to publicly humilitate our family, which is absurd and threatening libel. He is right that we don't know him. He doesn't know us either. I have not been harassing or threatening toward him. Just more hyperbole. That being said, our families will have a talk with the DA. Thank you.

  6. I can't help but notice she still did not point out any example of discrepancy in the reporting. People interpret things differently. 10 witnesses will tell 10 different varying versions of the same account. Mr. Chiv has not published anything that I have seen that is not fact. I am sure the family member is grieving and a lot of emotion does unbalance things for all of us. Peace to all.

  7. I also should say that he does not publish blogs until he has verified his facts and trusts his sources, I know this as a fact.

  8. want it, you've got it...tomorrow, after speaking with the DA, I will go through that one particular article, point out every discrepancy he made. Yes, I am a family member. However, I have worked in the legal field, I'm a United States Veteran, I have family in law enforcement and I know how to conduct myself appropriately, as does my family that was very quiet. Here's just ONE as I'm thinking to give you a bit. Mr. Hammers did not fall in debris. He was in a truck. He was hit by debris during a previous altercation. Fact.

    1. My hear grieves for you and your family's pain. I can only imagine how you feel. I hope you can give your mind some peace and not frazzle it more by being bothered with Mr. Chiv's blog. Perhaps he did make a mistake, I was not there and trust you know the details. Worry about staying strong for you and your family during this time and don't let things that, when it down to it, don't matter and aren't worth wasting your precious energy on. Peace to you and your family.

    2. Thank you. I would just like facts and integrity. It just seems a bit much this BLOGGER wants to attempt to humiliate my family and threaten libel suits. After he can stop and think...then I'll stop defending my family. I'm not angry as he claims. Only at the monster who murdered my family.

  9. Ms. Rhodes is free to get a court transcript of the two days so far. We will see how many discrepancies match up with a court record. The one article about the pile of debris was Mr. Curtis' opening statement. Could he have been talking about two different incidents.?My best recollection was he said pile of debris after a man saw a pistol in Arreaga's hand and shot Mr. Hammers .Could I have made one unintentional mistake while taking down notes. Sure.

    In 30 years of taking notes, and no one has accused me of misquotes and discrepancies.

    Ms. Rhodes has been on 3 blogs today, threatening enjoining, not in joining as she
    spelled it.

    Defending my family is the key term in her comments. I have detailed coverage of court testimony. None of my opinion in any coverage has been directed to Mr. Hammers who she seems to be related to. Testimony in court about his character has been from Shavonne Hammers.

    People, either family or friends have talked during testimony.

    I can understand one grief stricken outburst but Ms. Rhodes has been on blogs all day. That is not the action of someone shying away from the spotlight.

    Ms. Rhodes was not at the scene. Neither was I.

    Emmbarassing family facts coming to light in a public trial in an open courtroom can be disconcerting.

  10. Mr. Chiv. You really do not get it do you? You have discrepancies here. First, I'm glad you've taken 30 years of notes. But still there were issues which I'm not going to rehash as you would like yet again.
    Secondly, I went on your blog and you blocked me immediately, therefore I came here. There wasn't a third. Or any other media contact. Hyperbole! Get used to the word since you want to keep going.
    As far as me saying "defending my family" I was referring to your absurd allegations of our family talking over the attorneys and witnesses. All of us were very quiet. Not the most VOCAL you've ever witnessed. Hyperbole!
    I find this all hard to believe when the other reporters in town had the correct information.
    Finally, all these "embarrassing facts" you think I'm upset about?? I knew all of this long ago. All of our family did. We were and are prepared. Thank you for your assumption though.
    And last, this is the only place I have put an opinion on you. There was no grief stricken outburst. I only keep responding because now you, sir, will not stop your attempts to defame me because I asked you to get your facts straight. Which, clearly you still aren't capable of in this last post. Assumptions and hyperbole.
    I did however, enjoy your last blog on what was happening. Much more to the point.

    P.S. Her name is spelled Chavonne. You keep going back and forth in your articles on how to spell. There you go.

  11. Your family? These lowlife druggies who kill without missing a beat? Meth like it's Cheerios, Heroin, when did Fieldbrook get infested with these vermin. Are you one of them? For your own sake, shut up.

    1. STOP. To what purpose is all of this? Can anyone say that they themselves have not had things they have done that they are not proud of? Would you love your family member less if one of them had been stricken with drug addiction? Can we have some compassion please? We are all just people trying to make our way in this world, some of us have more problems than others and to attempt to diminish that value of a human life to a family that has lost someone in this way is just awful. Chiv, stop replying to her because nobody else is questioning your integrity and as a journalist you will experience this situation. Though you may not agree with her and probably are offended (rightly so) she is offended and in pain also. Be an instrument of peace and swallow your pride, it is the high road. Keep love in your hearts.

    2. Anon 9:42 your advice is well taken. After correcting some more facts, I will let Ms. Rhodes' behavior speak for itself, if she choses to keep engaging.

      Ms. Rhodes has been on the blogs non stop for 2 days. Who is this Chad? Related to anyone in this case?
      Someone with a grudge?

      I printed one comment from Ms. Rhodes and I did not block her as she claims. I did tell her that I will not print anymore comments if she continues to misstate facts. She did that in a second email. I saved that email.

      In the meantime she proceeded to ignore my response and go on the blogs non-stop with the same claims.

      She has not come up with a single discrepancy. Her issue is with a courtroom observation about people talking. I provide detailed coverage that others do not. Same facts in KIEM and TS that I also wrote about. In 2 days, Ms. Rhodes has followed every link of my blog's coverage claiming discrepancies yet all she has issue with is one or two courtroom observations.

      The Tully family has been at every court hearing. Most families are grateful and talk only to me.

      Other commenters have eloquently made observations about interpretations in a courtroom.

      Ms. Rhodes threatened me with enjoining, a word she could not even spell correctly. My rtesponding to that threat she turns around and claims I am threatening her. She considers a discrepancy of the spelling Shavonne's name, an issue that I addressed. Again, ignored.

      Similarly, about the pile of debris. Explained.

      Jason Arreaga is presumed innocent until proven guilty.
      The evidence is not in completely in this case.

      I can understand Ms. Rhodes grief but she seems to be upset about courtroom observations that I made in this trial which are relevant. Someone was asked to leave the courtroom because a witness felt intimidated. No one knows who that person is and whether they are connected to either victim.

      Similarly, Ms. Rhodes continued attempt to not, acknowledge explainations and try and intimidate me into silence in this comment section speaks for itself.

      I understand she is in pain. She is not the only one who has lost a loved one. Her behavior is not typical of families in court.

      It does not give her the right to interfere with anyone else attending the trial which is public in a courtroom.

      Anon, you are correct. Let's see who takes the high road.

    3. No one with a heart would respond to Ms. Rhodes in the manner that several have here. If she is upset about comments made about her family or what she heard in court she has every sane motivation to stand up for them. The suggestion she is looking for publicity is the opinion of a bully who would prefer to be unchallenged by those who find fault with him.

      How anyone can be so ungraceful in a response to a family member in this situation is disgraceful. Shame on you! If nothing else, accept that she is in an emotionally traumatic place and either ignore any rebuttals she may make to your words or respond in a less personal manner.

      Did someone here actually imply Ms. Rhodes is a drug addict and tell her people she loves are lowlifes? Seriously? We have no control over the choices the people closest to us make. Unconditional love stays even when there may be horrific circumstances. I feel sorry for anyone who belongs to a family that would turn their backs on another. As the saying goes, Hate the sin, not the sinner."

      Everyone is telling her to stop or back off. She has a very emotional reason for continuing. What's yours?

  12. Kristie, if necessary get the court transcripts and go line by line to point of the discrepancies. Having 30 years experience taking notes doesn't make one an excellent note taker. I know lots of people who are professional students with multiple degrees who are still complete morons and know shit about anything. Are emotions strong? Of course they are. This is a case about lost family members and those who took them away. As for any alleged "publicity stunts" one participant in this argument is complaining about perceived factual errors and another is blogging about a court case that apparently has no direct connection to them whatsoever for the purpose of gaining.....uhhhhh.....publicity. There can be no journalistic integrity if, as John says, he's not a professional. He's just another courtroom fanboy dreaming of being something more than whatever he is. Well intentioned or not I have seen time and time again how this type of activity just heaps even more pain upon the victims and their suvivors. I know Ms. Rhodes. I know her stellar service record in the Air Force and I know her integrity. I've never known her to fabricate or embellish. She's a straight shooter. Given her record, as a witness, she's unimpeachable."

    1. Thank you, Chad. I appreciate that. And you are about the only one who actually got my point.

    2. Chad, a friend of yours according to facebook.Was he in court yesterday? Or is he basing his opinion on your version of events?

      So are you going to have all your friends join in the comment section to stack your opinion?

  13. It certainly seems that this was an utterly senseless, entirely vicious and uncalled for act. No reason for these killings whatsoever, except for the lifestyle choice.

    I can't tell who exactly it is you're defending here. The victims did not deserve what happened to them, based on what I've read so far.

  14. You're mad at the wrong person. Chiv is not the one who put you in this situation. Chiv is not the one who killed your friend or family member(s). Someone from your friend/family member's circle of friends is, based on the described chain of events so far, they all knew each other, right? As for discrepancies, I guess further witnesses will uncover whether ANYTHING thus far spoken in court or reported out is true.

    If you're going to channel your energies, it ought to be on getting any other friends and family members OUT OF THAT LIFESTYLE. Nothing good comes of it. Nothing. And, as you now are experiencing, enormous pain and suffering for Innocent family members is all that comes of it.

    I'm going to assume, though one should not assume anything, that they have gun residue evidence on one of the people charged, or there would not have been immunity granted to one of the others.

    1. Rose, again...I'm not mad. I just asked for integrity. Period. As for friends and family in that lifestyle as you say...I have no other that I'm aware of or in contact with. Sorry to disappoint. You see, in the Air Force we have a motto. Integrity. Service Before Self. Excellence in All We Do. Suppose I tend to hold others to that standard as well. As for Chiv... He's lashing out and I'm not going to respond to my friend's comments. He can do so himself if he so wishes.

    2. Rose, again...I'm not mad. I just asked for integrity. Period. As for friends and family in that lifestyle as you say...I have no other that I'm aware of or in contact with. Sorry to disappoint. You see, in the Air Force we have a motto. Integrity. Service Before Self. Excellence in All We Do. Suppose I tend to hold others to that standard as well. As for Chiv... He's lashing out and I'm not going to respond to my friend's comments. He can do so himself if he so wishes.

  15. I'm so sorry you're having to go through this.

  16. I am the sister of one of the murder victims. All of this extra added drama is really not necessary. I appreciate anybody that can help us let the truth be known. Yes there have been some mistskes in the info reported. Nobody is perfect. Yet it really pisses me off that our family has been described as being one of the loudest or most disruptive families he has ever seen in court. There had been whispers because of the absolute ridiculous answers given by Shavonne because as family we know she is full of lies. We have not once been disruptive to the court. And Im sorry if you consider crying in court as you hear about the gruesome details of your loved ones being murdered to be disruptive. Personally I would apprciate it if the arguing would be kept private.

  17. I am the sister of one of the murder victims. All of this extra added drama is really not necessary. I appreciate anybody that can help us let the truth be known. Yes there have been some mistskes in the info reported. Nobody is perfect. Yet it really pisses me off that our family has been described as being one of the loudest or most disruptive families he has ever seen in court. There had been whispers because of the absolute ridiculous answers given by Shavonne because as family we know she is full of lies. We have not once been disruptive to the court. And Im sorry if you consider crying in court as you hear about the gruesome details of your loved ones being murdered to be disruptive. Personally I would apprciate it if the arguing would be kept private.

    1. Sherrie, at no point did I say sobbing was disruptive. In fact, I did a post saying the opposite. However, once again a reaction and misinterpretation.

      I understand you are upset about my courtroom observation about what you considering whispering or a distraction. At least your response is something I understand and it is perfectly valid. It is Ms. Rhodes who could have dealt with this privately
      in an email. She chose to go public.

      If I am indeed wrong about your family, then Monday we will find out. I have no intention of engaging any of you in person or public. You all can do the same or not.

      Sherrie, I dont know which victim you are related to but the Tully family has been most gracious and stoic throughout all of this as well as the Hammers family who has been attending many court hearings.

  18. Regardless, the court record, what is said in the trial is the only thing that matters, the only thing that the jury can hear or consider when reaching a verdict.

    And the accused is to be considered innocent, unless and until proven guilty in that court of law. That's because, of course, among other things, people may bring false witness against him.

  19. Kristie Rhodes is a crazy bipolar chick, If you can't tell by her post. I went to school with her when she was sane. But since then, all she does is try to get attention from multiple sources. If I were you, or anybody else, I'd just let her be. I mean, she's been in the nut house before. Also attempted suicide. How she owns a firearm is beyond me.
    Don't pay her any mind. The girl has lost it.

  20. Don't make her mad! She will get her fat, cheetoh eating, ex NSA super soldier, reply poly "analyst" after you. LOL! Everyone is a CIA or NSA bad ass on the internet. I doubt either one ever served in any combat capacity. Probably clerks that ate everything in site.


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