Wednesday, 17 July 2024

News

FORT BRAGG – Four young people – including two juveniles – were arrested Saturday for allegedly breaking into a Fort Bragg home in search of marijuana.


Elden Hogan, 21, of Roseville, Francisco Apodaca, 19, of Fort Bragg, and two 16-year-old male juveniles from Fort Bragg were arrested on charges of robbery, false imprisonment and conspiracy, according to Capt. Kurt Smallcomb of the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office.


Last Saturday at 2 a.m. Mendocino County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched to 17900 North Highway 1 in Fort Bragg in regards to a residential robbery, Smallcomb said.


On arrival deputies contacted the victim, who Smallcomb said advised them that at 1:45 a.m. he was asleep inside his residence when three subjects wearing dark clothing forcibly entered into his residence and struck the victim with an iron pipe.


Smallcomb said the victim reported that the suspects tied his hands behind his back at gunpoint and threatened to kill him if he yelled for help. The suspects then demanded his marijuana.


The victim reportedly told the suspects where his approximate 8 pounds of processed marijuana was at, Smallcomb said. The suspects retrieved the marijuana from inside the residence and then fled the location in a vehicle.


Deputies continued their investigation into the incident and received information that Apodaca may have had knowledge that the victim was in possession of large amounts of marijuana, Smallcomb said.


The deputies contacted Apodaca along with the two juvenile suspects from Fort Bragg. Smallcomb said the three were subsequently booked into the Mendocino County Jail and Juvenile Hall.


Deputies further learned that Hogan – who had family ties to Fort Bragg – fled to Roseville soon after the robbery. Smallcomb said the deputies, with the assistance of Roseville Police officers, were able to locate Hogan and he was subsequently arrested.


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Northshore Fire Protection District firefighters put out a vehicle fire on Country Club Drive in Lucerne, Calif., on Saturday, July 10, 2010. Photo by Elizabeth Larson.





LAKE COUNTY – Several fires were reported around the county late Friday and throughout the day Saturday, resulting in damages including burned vegetation, a destroyed shed and a charred car.


Following two vegetation fires earlier in the week, another similar fire was reported in Clearlake Oaks late Friday.


The fire, which was reported just after 9 p.m., occurred on the Elem Colony, according to Northshore Fire Protection District Battalion Chief Pat Brown.


The blazes that occurred earlier last week were attributed to fireworks, but Brown said they couldn't be certain of the cause of Friday's fire.


Brown said the Friday fire had three different start points spread about 75 feet apart, with about an acre of land being burned.


Three engines responded, Brown said, with the fire being quickly contained. Reports from the scene indicated engines were released at about 9:40 p.m.


Just before 4 p.m. Saturday a structure fire was reported on Lakeshore Boulevard in Nice, according to Northshore Fire Protection District Battalion Chief Steve Hart.


The structure in question was a shed attached to a residence, Hart said.


A witness reported three neighbors helped keep the flames down with hoses until the firefighters arrived on the scene.


Five engines – three from Northshore Fire, one from Lakeport Fire and one from Cal Fire – responded to the blaze, which consumed the shed, according to Hart.


Hart said the fire was contained in about seven minutes. The shed was destroyed, with damages estimated at $10,000. The residence was saved, he added.


The fire, according to Hart, was “suspicious in nature.”


In Lakeport at about 6:10 p.m. firefighters responded to a barbecue fire at the Driftwood Apartments at 975 Forbes St., according to Lakeport Fire Protection District Capt. Bob Ray.


Ray said the teenage daughter of the residents in one of the upstairs apartments lit a propane-fired barbecue, which was sitting against a metal railing about 8 feet from the building, and went back inside the apartment.


About a minute later the apartment's residents reported hearing what sounded like an explosion and, when they looked out they saw a fireball, with the barbecue throwing flames out over the railing, Ray said.


“Another neighbor showed up with a garden hose prior to us arriving and partially extinguished it,” said Ray.


An engine from Lakeport Fire responded, with a second engine from Kelseyville Fire canceled before arriving on scene. Ray said the fire was contained within about three to four minutes.


Nobody was injured, Ray said.


He said a 10 foot by 15 foot area of fiberglass roofing covering a storage area was damaged, as was about an 8 foot by 6 foot area of the deck under the barbecue, which was itself destroyed.


Ray said the building itself was not damaged, and that the people involved were “very fortunate.”


He said there appeared to have been a fuel leak between the propane tank and the barbecue itself.


In Lucerne, a vehicle fire was reported just after 7 p.m. at the corner of Country Club and 14th Avenue.


Hart and two Northshore Fire engines responded to the fires, which destroyed the small blue Honda.


Firefighters pried open the trunk and pulled out what appeared to be a baby stroller and some cardboard.


Hart said the driver reported the car had started sputtering, so she pulled over and left the vehicle, returning a short time later to find it fully involved.


He said the fire appeared to have started in the Honda's power distribution system near the firewall.


Hart was concerned that the fire slightly damaged utility lines directly above where the car sat, parked partially on the sidewalk.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LakeCoNews and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lake-County-News/143156775604?ref=mf .

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Hallie Sullivan of Lower Lake High School in Lower Lake, Calif., submitted this winning entry, chosen by the Anderson Marsh Interpretive Association's 2010 Old Time Bluegrass Festival Logo Contest.

 

 


LOWER LAKE – A Lower Lake High School student has been named the winner of this year's Old Time Bluegrass Festival Logo Contest.


The Anderson Marsh Interpretive Association (AMIA) announced that Hallie Sullivan submitted the winning entry.


The bluegrass festival is the major fundraiser for AMIA and its preservation/educational work at Anderson Marsh State Historic Park.


The event also raises funds for the Children’s Museum of Art & Science, supports local schools and service groups who participate, provides a venue for local craft and food vendors, advertises individual sponsors and “markets” Lake County.


The festival is held at Anderson Marsh State Historic Park on the second Saturday in September.


This year’s festival will be Saturday, Sept. 11, and will also honor and raise funds for Lake County’s first responders.


Sullivan received $100 and her logo will be used for the 2010 Bluegrass Festival posters, t-shirts and other merchandise and promotional materials.


All logo entrants will receive tickets to the festival, a recognition certificate and their original art will be framed and on display at this year’s festival.


“We also plan to continue last year’s practice of making postcards of all of logo entries, adding them to a group of Bluegrass postcards made from all the 2009 entries,” said Gae Henry, who coordinated the logo contest. “AMIA sells these postcards as part of their fundraising for the park.”


Help to support activities such as the Old Time Bluegrass Festival by coming and enjoying the music, and set into motion the recycling of dollars and energy back into our wonderful community.


Anderson Marsh State Historic Park is located on Highway 53, between Lower Lake and Clearlake.


For more information about the festival, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 707-995-2658.


For more information about the park, visit www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=483.


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ELK CREEK – A Williams woman was arrested Saturday after she drove a pickup into the Stony Gorge Reservoir near Elk Creek.


Carmen Sanchez Delgado, 25, was arrested following the incident, which occurred just after 7 p.m., according to Glenn County Sheriff Larry Jones.


The California Highway Patrol received a 911 cell phone call reporting than a subject had driven their pickup into the Stony Gorge Reservoir, Jones said. The caller reported that the driver and only known occupant had been able to escape and swim to shore prior to the pickup submerging beneath the surface.


Glenn County Sheriff's Deputy Ronelle Knouse was dispatched to assist the CHP, Jones said. As the deputy and CHP were responding, Elk Creek Fire Department personnel, who had arrived on scene, were reporting the female, later identified as Delgado, was combative towards them.


Sheriff’s Sgt. Loren Bouldin and County Service Officer Barry Corbin of the Sheriff’s Marine Enforcement Unit were dispatched. Jones said the vehicle was located by Sgt. Bouldin in about 7 feet of water and marked with a floating buoy.


Delgado, with the assistance of Deputy Knouse, was taken into custody by the CHP, and transported and booked into the Glenn County Jail in Willows for investigation of driving under the influence of alcohol and resisting arrest, Jones said.


The Glenn County Sheriff’s Office followed protocols for contaminants in a navigable waterway, notifying Fish & Game, the Bureau of Reclamation, Cal-EMA and the State Water Resources Control Board. Jones said officials at Black Butte Reservoir assisted by providing contaminant containment boom material.


The following day, assisted by the Glenn-Cordora Fire Department Dive Team and the Glenn County Sheriff’s Office Marine Enforcement Unit, the pickup was removed from the reservoir, Jones said.


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Greg Dills of the East Lake and West Lake Resource Conservation District and Katherine Blyleven of the Lake County Department of Agriculture with the 2009 Invasive Weed Awareness Week display board. The display board can be viewed during the week of July 19 to 23, 2010, at the Lake County Agricultural building in Lakeport, Calif. Courtesy photo.
 

 


LAKE COUNTY – Mark your calendar – the Lake County Weed Management Area is hosting its fifth annual invasive weeds tour on Thursday, July 22.


The tour is free and the public is welcome and encouraged to attend.


The third week of July is California’s annual “Invasive Weed Awareness Week.”


This statewide program is designed to educate citizens about the undesirable effects and impacts of non-native invasive weeds.


The self-driving tour is a fun and informative event that gives participants the chance to view and learn about several species of invasive weeds.


The tour will begin in Lakeport, proceed to Nice and Kelseyville, and end at Lakeside Park with a discussion and samples of aquatic weeds followed by lunch.


This year’s tour includes revisiting some of the same sites as last year to observe the progress in controlling the invasive weeds and, in some cases, to see how rapidly the unattended invasive weeds have spread.


Participants will see a demonstration area where goats have been used to control Spanish broom. The tour will also highlight weeds such as Arundo donax, tamarisk, tree of heaven, skeleton weed, water primrose and various other aquatic weeds.


Passenger vans with limited seating will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. All other participants will need to provide their own transportation and carpooling is encouraged.


The end-of-tour lunch is free but donations to offset the costs of lunch and refreshments will be greatly appreciated and cheerfully accepted.


Registration begins at 8:15 a.m. at the Lake County Department of Agriculture, located at 883 Lakeport

Blvd. The tour will depart from the parking lot at 8:45 a.m.


Please RSVP with Kristi at 707-263-0217 by July 19 if you plan on attending and indicate if you would like a seat on one of the vans.


The tour is sponsored by Lake County Department of Agriculture, the Lake County Department of Public Works, and the East Lake and West Lake Resource Conservation Districts.


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ANDERSON SPRINGS – A 3.0-magnitude earthquake was reported near Anderson Springs early Friday morning.


The quake was reported at 1:42 a.m. Friday, according to the US Geological Survey.


It was centered two miles south southwest of Anderson Springs, 15 miles south southwest of Clearlake and 20 miles north of Santa Rosa, the US Geological Survey reported. The quake was recorded at a depth of 1.3 miles.


The survey received four shake reports – from Guerneville, Richmond, La Habra and Buckeye, Ariz., approximately 1,075 miles away.


A 3.3-magnitude quake was reported at The Geysers geothermal steamfield and six miles west of Anderson Springs on July 4, as Lake County News has reported.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LakeCoNews and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lake-County-News/143156775604?ref=mf .

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Casey Meroshnekoff of Red Bluff, Calif., comes out of the gate during the bareback bronc riding competition on Saturday, July 10, 2010, during the 81st annual Lake County Rodeo in Lakeport, Calif. Meroshnekoff won the event with a score of 63. Photo by Nick Moranda.
 

 

 




LAKEPORT – The county's rodeo tradition continued this past weekend with the 81st annual Lake County Rodeo, which drew cowboys and cowgirls from around California.


“Rodeo takes all of us back to simpler times, less hectic and filled with down-to-earth family values,” said Lake County Rodeo Association President John Fulton in his message in the rodeo magazine.


The events included in rodeo today come from experiences on the ranch or the range. Rodeo officials explained that one event in particular – steer wrestling – came about after one man got frustrated with a testy steer and decided to pounce on the animal’s back.


This year's rodeo included the Rodeo, Tractor and Pet Parade, which peacefully trotted down Main Street in Lakeport at 11 a.m. Saturday, featuring grand marshal Monte Montana Jr.

 

 

 

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Brad McGilchrist of Marysville, Calif., competes in steer wrestling at the Lake County Rodeo in Lakeport, Calif., on Saturday, July 10, 2010. McGilchrist would place second in the competition. Photo by Nick Moranda.
 

 

 


A new event was “Come learn about the rodeo,” where event-goers had the opportunity to meet the new barrel man, Charlie “Too Tall” West as well as Ted Dwyer, the California Cowboys Pro Rodeo Association announcer, an hour before the event began.


“Too Tall” also treated the crowd to a bit of a comedy skit mixed in with a few tricks from his miniature show horse, Molly, who jumped over, and went under, several bars.


The competition itself saw competitors from around the state taking part in numerous competitions – from saddle and bareback bronc to bull riding, team roping to break-away roping, and barrel racing.

 

 

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Competitors in the mutton bustin' event line up on Saturday, July 10, 2010, at the Lake County Rodeo in Lakeport, Calif. Photo by Tera DeVroede.
 

 

 


A big hit for people of all ages was the dance, which wrapped up the night of excitement with a concert by Lou Derr & Bootleg.”


Results for the competition are listed below. For online results as they are posted, visit http://ccpra.com/.



CCPRA Championship Point Standings Report – Saturday, July 10, 2010:


Calf roping


Name, city of residence, time (in seconds)


Blake Hirdes, Turlock, 8.7

Ethan Garcia, Bishop, 11.0

Adam Andreini, Red Bluff, 11.0

Dusty Bravos, Redding, 11.3


Steer wrestling


Name, city of residence, time (in seconds)


Shane Radelfinger, Ferndale, 4.4

Brad McGilchrist, Marysville, 4.8

Tyler Mitchell, Napa, 5.2


Break-away roping


Name, city of residence, time (in seconds)


Fallon Avery, Aromas, 2.9

Marla Zuber, Orick, 3.5

Jodie Coleman, Ferndale, 3.6

Christie Buckner, Lakeport, 3.7


Barrel racing


Name, city of residence, time (in seconds)


Natasha Haddad, Crescent City, 14.17

Nina Moore, Reno, 14.22

Jamie Cook, Willows, 14.28

Jenny Millsap, Willits, 14.42

Leslie Moore, Bridgeville, 14.47

Rainey Hatch, Ukiah, 14.49

Angie Hardin, Cottonwood, 14.51

Kaitlyn Wiggin, Williams, 14.52


Team roping


Name, city of residence, time (in seconds)


David Ramont, Hughson, and Wyatt Williams, Cottonwood, 6.1

Ryan Reed, Lodi, and James Ferrera, Lodi, 6.1

John Jones, Kelseyville and J. Cody Jones, Kelseyville, 6.7

Wade Bunn, Palo Cedro, and Sam Williams, Cottonwood, 8.8


Saddle bronc riding


Name, city of residence, score


Luke White, Lincoln, 66

Logan Nallon, Greenwood, 63

Ethan Lemon, 62

Tyler Thomson, Tehachapi, 58


Bareback bronc riding


Name, city of residence, score


Casey Meroshnekoff, Red Bluff, 63

Mark Thomson, Tehachapi, to be announced

Clint Lear, Anderson, to be announced


Bull riding


Name, city of residence, score


Joe Chamberlain, Newman, 78

Scott Williamson, 76

Tyler Stueve, Marysville, 67

Jordan Spears, Redding, to be announced

Chad Morlan, Kelseyville, to be announced

Jesse Aitken, Laytonville, to be announced

Ricky Wilson, San Jose, to be announced

Leif Ferri, Willits, to be announced

Dustin Haberman, Crescent City, to be announced


E-mail Tera deVroede at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LakeCoNews and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lake-County-News/143156775604?ref=mf .

 

 

 

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From left, 2010 Lake County Rodeo Queen Ashley Johnson of Kelseyville; Miss California Cowboys Pro Rodeo Association 2010 Jennifer Marinelli and 2010 Lake County Princess Kimberly Fischer of Kelseyville. Photo by Tera DeVroede.
 

 

 

 

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Charlie

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A bee enjoys lavender at the home of Lisa Cole in Clearlake, Calif., on the morning of Saturday, July 10, 2010. Photo by Esther Oertel.




I’m sitting outdoors in Petaluma as I write this, the sun on my back and lush fields of blooming lavender in view. I didn’t plan this happy coincidence. It just so happens that my in-laws, whom I’m visiting, live next door to the Lavender Bee Farm, a fixture on the Sonoma County Farm Trails map.


A stone’s throw away, hundreds of stalks with their deep purple blooms wave gently in the breeze. They’re planted row upon row, filling nearly every inch of the neighbor’s several acre plot, reminiscent of photos of lavender fields in France.


It’s interesting that the stalks, though loosely splayed, retain the integrity of the rotund shape of the shrub, almost like neat rows of aromatic sea urchins. The deep green foliage at each shrub’s base makes for a striking contrast of color.


What’s planted next door is English lavender, from which the lavender used in potpourris and cuisine comes. There are well over 25 species of lavender, including Spanish, Dutch, Mexican and French, but it’s English lavender that has become famous in the French countryside.


The name lavender is derived from the Latin word lavare, which means to wash. Lavender has long been used as a fragrance in soaps and shampoos, extending back to ancient Rome, where lavender was used to scent Roman baths.


So valuable was lavender in ancient Rome, a pound of the harvested flowers sold for the equivalent of a month’s wages. The Romans thought lavender was important enough to take with them when they conquered southern Britain, thus becoming the ancestor of the many varieties of English lavender we know today.


Though lavender is most widely known in the sunny Mediterranean region, it is speculated that this member of the mint family originated in Asia. It’s grown in gardens throughout the world, and since lavender cross-pollinates easily, there are countless variations within each species.


There is recorded evidence going back 2,500 years showing lavender’s use as a stewing herb, a mood tonic, a fragrance, an insect repellent and a food flavoring.


The distinctively pungent aroma of lavender is used in aromatherapy as a calming influence; in fact, scientific studies confirm that the scent of lavender produces calming, soothing and sedative effects. The ancient Greeks crushed and burned it to create a relaxing fume.


Lavender-filled pillows are a common folk remedy for insomnia – my neighbor told me just this morning that she sleeps with a small bag of lavender under her pillow – and modern research suggests that this may be an effective remedy. It has been found that the scent of lavender slows the activity of the nervous system and improves sleep quality.


A few evenings ago, I had the privilege of cutting lavender from the abundant bushes of a generous friend. It was a calm, quiet dusk, and a lone bumblebee was my companion as I inhaled deeply of the fragrant blossoms while trimming the stalks. I went away calmer than I had arrived, and I credit the lavender for the quieting of my spirit.


I’ve spent some time in recent weeks researching the many culinary uses of lavender and have been surprised to find just how extensively lavender can be used in a wide swath of culinary genres, both sweet and savory.


It can be made into vinegars, salad dressings, flavored oils, and rubs for fish and meat. It flavors whipped cream and chocolate, is baked into scones and is added to lemonade. It’s added to stews, sauces and ice cream, makes a fragrant aioli, and is delicious when paired with goat cheese. It’s steeped for tea, flavors coffee and adds an aromatic element to spiced teas, such as lavender chai.


The real question is whether there’s a way lavender CAN’T be used in cuisine.

 

 

 

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Veggie Girl Esther Oertel harvested a little lavender from the garden of Lisa Cole in Clearlake, Calif., on Saturday, July 10, 2010. Photo by Esther Oertel.
 

 

 


If you’re lucky enough to have a lavender bush on your property or, like me, have generous friends who allow you to harvest their crop, there are endless ways to make use of it.


Lavender should be harvested in the early blossom stage, before they are fully open. Do this early in the day, after the dew has dried. Moisture impedes the drying process, so harvest your lavender on a dry day.


I find that bees are less abundant in the early morning and in the dim light of evening, which makes harvesting a bit easier.


Use rubber bands to tie the lavender stalks into small bunches, and hang them upside down in a dry (and, ideally, dark) place. It doesn’t take long for the buds to dry, perhaps one or two weeks.


Depending on the location, place a clean sheet under the lavender to trap falling blossoms, or loosely tie a paper bag under each hanging bundle.


When dry, shake the lavender into a paper bag, or wrap each bundle in a clean pillow case and roll it as you would a rolling pin. Gather the dried buds from the bag or pillow case and pick or sieve out the larger bits of plant. The remaining dry stems can be used to toss into a fireplace for aroma or into a barbecue for flavor.


The recipe I offer here is a rather exotic one, perfect for a light summertime meal. If needed, culinary lavender can be purchased at gourmet shops. Enjoy!



Seared ahi tuna with lavender-pepper crust


Mustard seed dressing (recipe follows)

1 1/2 pounds center-cut ahi tuna or four (4- to 6-ounce) 1-inch thick sushi quality tuna steaks

1 teaspoon coarse salt

2 teaspoons black peppercorns

1 teaspoon white peppercorns

2 teaspoons fennel seeds

1 1/2 teaspoons dried culinary lavender flowers

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

4 cups savory mixed fresh greens and herbs


Prepare mustard seed dressing; set aside.


If using the center-cut ahi tuna, trim and cut the tuna into a block approximately 2 inches across; then cut into 1-inch steaks.


Crush the salt, peppercorns, fennel seeds, and lavender with a mortar and pestle or a rolling pin. Lightly oil the tuna with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil; evenly coat the tuna with the lavender-pepper mixture, patting off any excess.


In a heavy bottomed sauté pan or a cast-iron pan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Increase the heat to high and place the tuna in the pan. Sear for 1 minutes, then turn over carefully, reducing the heat to medium. Sear the other side for 1 more minutes until medium rare. Remove from heat and immediately refrigerate the tuna for at least 1 hour but no more than 3 hours.


To serve, arrange the greens on chilled individual serving plates. Drizzle with mustard seed dressing. Thinly slice the tuna and arrange on top of the dressed greens.


Makes 8 servings.



Mustard seed dressing


4 tablespoons prepared whole-grain mustard

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons toasted mustard seed

2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar

3 tablespoons vegetable stock or water

1 teaspoon honey (or to taste)

Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place mustard seeds in a baking pan. Place in oven and roast for a couple of minutes (watch carefully so the seeds don't burn). Remove from oven and let cool. Whisk all the ingredients together and season to taste.


Esther Oertel, the "Veggie Girl," is a personal chef and culinary coach and is passionate about local produce. Oertel owns The SageCoach Personal Chef Service and teaches culinary classes at Chic Le Chef in Hidden Valley Lake. She welcomes your questions and comments; e-mail her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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FORT BRAGG – An Oregon man has been sentenced to jail time and restitution of $200,000 for a timber theft.


On Thursday, Mendocino County Superior Court Judge Richard Henderson ordered Edward Colombi Jr., 60, of Salem to pay $200,000 in restitution and serve 180 days in county jail for the theft of timber belonging to David McCutcheon.


“Justice for our citizens requires that property crimes be treated seriously,” said Mendocino County District Attorney Meredith Lintott. “These crimes include timber thefts, and our office remains committed to prosecuting them. I am grateful for the just resolution of this case against Mr. Colombi.”


Colombi had entered a no contest plea to felony grand theft of timber. He has been ordered to appear on Oct. 12 to make sure he has paid the full $200,000 and to turn himself into the Mendocino County Jail, according to Lintott's office.


In 1998 McCutcheon, a commercial fisherman residing in Elk, began storing sinker logs and cut lumber on property in Fort Bragg rented from Edward Colombi Sr., according to Lintott's report.


On March 26, 2006, McCutcheon visited the property and saw that all of his logs and lumber were present. On May 26 he telephoned the new owner, Edward Colombi Jr., and informed him he would pick up the logs and lumber between June 13 and 15.


On June 15, when McCutcheon returned to the property to pick up the logs and lumber, he discovered that “all my wood was gone,” Lintott's office reported. McCutcheon then undertook his own investigation, and discovered a small portion of the sinker logs in the possession of a Fort Bragg resident that had been sold to him for $3,200 by Robert Russell.


Russell later plead to petty theft, was ordered to pay $3,200 in restitution to McCutcheon and was sentenced to 30 days in jail, the Mendocino County District Attorney's Office reported.


Officials said that except for a couple logs he found in Westport, McCutcheon he was unable to find what had happened to the remainder of his wood.


On Sept. 14, 2007, prosecutor Tim Stoen filed felony grand theft charges against Colombi and Russell. On March 17, 2008, Mr. Stoen presented evidence at a preliminary hearing before Judge Clay Brennan, who held both Colombi and Russell to stand trial.


Lintott's office said the case was then transferred to Ukiah because of the number of witnesses. After the defense filed a “995” motion to set aside the Judge Brennan's holding order, Deputy District Attorney Heidi Larson successfully defended the ruling.


This past Jan. 7, Colombi entered a no contest plea based on a promise of probation, with “no state prison at the outset.” Lintott's office said the main issue then became restitution, because the prosecution and defense counsel were "miles apart" on the number of logs, the amount of board footage, and the fair market value of the sinker logs.


Beginning on June 11, Judge Henderson held a restitution hearing that took place on five separate days. Stoen presented evidence, by testimony or declarations, through David McCutcheon, Stuart Beck, Lloyd Livingston, Fred Struthers and Darlene Letner.


Defense attorneys Richard Petersen and Justin Petersen called 10 witnesses, including a timber mill owner, and also a botanist who analyzed the “growth rings” of weeds on the issue of the size of the two sinker log piles claimed by McCutcheon.


After the evidence Judge Henderson made a tentative ruling in which he found that McCutcheon was “generally credible,” and that there was a theft of 65 to 70 logs at a fair market value of $4 per board foot. Following his ruling, Judge Henderson encouraged the prosecution and the defense to try to negotiate a restitution amount.


Based on Judge Henderson's ruling the prosecution and the defense entered a series of negotiations leading to a stipulation for Colombi's sentence that included $200,000 as restitution payable to McCutcheon, with $150,000 within 30 days, and the remaining $50,000 within 60 days thereafter, along with three years probation and a jail term of 180 days, or 90 days actual as a condition of probation.


Judge Henderson then approved the sentence stipulation, and gave Colombi time to return to his home in Oregon to get his affairs in order before turning himself in.


“I want to thank Judge Henderson for his careful attention to the conflicting evidence in this case, and for his ability to penetrate to the truth,” said Stoen. “Without his tentative ruling and analysis of the evidence, the prosecution and the defense would not have had a sufficient framework for a meeting of the minds as to a fair sentence. I am hopeful that Mr. McCutcheon will use this restitution money to fulfill his dream of building a custom house on the Mendocino Coast."


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UPPER LAKE – Summer's hot temperatures have hit Lake County, but area residents can get out and enjoy shopping in the cooler evening hours during Upper Lake's Thursday night markets.


The markets will take place from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. every Thursday beginning this week and continuing through Aug. 19, according to Debbie Hablutzel, president of the Upper Lake Community Council, which is sponsoring the weekly events.


“It is not exactly a farmers' market,” said Hablutzel. “We welcome arts, crafts, produce, plants and more – it’s just a fun thing.”


Hablutzel says event-goers will have between 10 and 20 vendors to visit. Expect the same pleasant yet festive atmosphere that recently kicked off the summer spirit during Upper Lake's Wild West Day.


Like Wild West Day, Main Street will be blocked off so shoppers can browse safely, Hablutzel said. Admission is free.


Singers and songwriters from around Lake County will have a chance to perform at the market, Hablutzel said.


The lineup of performers begins with Dave Hendricks this week, to be followed on July 22 by Lonnie Caldwell, Angelina & Ian on July 29, Stephen Holland & Friends on Aug. 5, Michael Barrish on Aug. 12 and on Aug. 19 by Hilarie, Milton & Moe.


Those interested about vendor space are encouraged to call Hablutzel at 707-275-2000 or Byron Green, a member of the Upper Lake Community Council, at 707-275-9515.


E-mail Tera deVroede at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LakeCoNews and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lake-County-News/143156775604?ref=mf .

LAYTONVILLE – Authorities made several drug-related arrests on Friday during a Laytonville concert.


Those arrested in connection to the “Stilldream” event included Ted Muth, 18, of Santa Cruz; Jethro Lloyd, 38, of Humboldt County; TiaMaria Boxberger, a 28-year-old transient; and Jordan Irwin, 18, of Sacramento, according to a report from Capt. Kurt Smallcomb of the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office.

 

Smallcomb reported that on July 5 the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office received information regarding the concert, which takes place at a location known as “Area 101,” approximately 10 miles north of Laytonville.


The event, according to Smallcomb, was a rave concert, where he said designer-type drugs, such as Ecstacy (MDMA), psilocybin mushrooms and LSD, or acid, are commonly found.


MDMA is a purely chemical substance which causes hallucinations. Smallcomb said other common street names for MDMA include “Molly,” “Ex” and “Thizz.”


MDMA causes an increased heart rate, severe dehydration, increased blood pressure and hallucinations. Several Northern California counties have reported numerous deaths associated with the use of Ecstacy, Smallcomb said.


When the original information was provided to the sheriff's office, Smallcomb said it was learned that workers at the event were known to sell and use drugs during the event. Approximately 700 people were attending the 10th annual concert.


Agents from the Mendocino County Major Crimes Task Force were assisted by agents from the California Alcoholic Beverage Control and performed an undercover investigation during the evening on Friday, Smallcomb said.


During the investigation, undercover agents purchased Ecstacy from Lloyd, a staff worker, and Boxberger, an attendee, Smallcomb said.


At the time of the purchase, Smallcomb said Boxberger offered the agent psilocybin mushrooms. During Lloyd's arrest, agents located 15 individual baggies of MDMA totaling an ounce. With MDMA having a street value of $100 a gram, Lloyd possessed $1,200 worth of the drug.


Free marijuana was given to the undercover agent by another staff worker, the 18-year-old Muth, who Smallcomb said was wearing a wrist band which identified him as being 21 years old. Muth stated that another staff worker, who knew he was only 18 years old, issued him the wrist band. Additional marijuana was found on Muth at the time of his arrest.


While agents were inside the dance area, another subject, Irwin, was extremely intoxicated and was staggering and was arrested for public intoxication, Smallcomb said.


The investigation into the promoters and staff workers will continue.


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