Unsolved Deaths & Disappearances on the Mendo Coast
by Tim Stelloh, April 19, 2010
Though lightly populated and scenic as a Kinkade painting, the Mendo Coast is--at times, anyway--as sinister, violent and lawless as the rest of this county. Below is an index of unsolved deaths, attempted murders, disappearances and questionable classifications from the coast (and connected to the coast)--along with links to AVA coverage and websites with relevant info.
Huckins, 63, was found dead in the garage of her Fort Bragg home in January 2010--the victim of a gunshot wound. Though her death was officially labeled suicide, police now say they're awaiting new evidence from the Department of Justice and that they recently received "good information" from Huckins' friends, who have doubted the suicide classification.
Click here to read our coverage of her death.
Michael Peacock, brother of convicted Westport shooter Richard Peacock, worked for ex-GOP chairman Ken Rogers growing pot on the latter's Westport property; Peacock testified against the former chairman last year during Rogers' trial for attempted murder and conspiracy. Peacock was found murdered in his Placer County trailer shortly after Rogers' conviction. Placer County police have said there's no Mendo connection to his death, but they're yet to make an arrest.
To read our coverage of the Peacock killing, click here. For our Rogers coverage, click here.
Long, 22, died of a methadone overdose in the basement of her parent's home near Fort Bragg in May 2008. Her ex-boyfriend was with her at the time of her death, but he's yet to give detectives an interview. Police forwarded the case to the DA's office but no one has been charged.
Click here to read our coverage of the case, or here for a website devoted to Long's memory.
Fifty-two-year-old Schlick-Harris, a recent Fort Bragg transplant, went missing on New Years Eve, 2007. She was last seen at the Surfwood in Mendo, and her car was found at the Caspar Inn.
Horstman grew up around Fort Bragg and was heavily involved with police efforts in the mid-90s to lock up her husband, John Dalton, for growing pot. Her body was found floating in the Clark Fork River in Missoula, Montana three years ago. There were no signs of injury, and the medical examiner classified her death as "undetermined."
To read our coverage of Horstman--and John Dalton--click here.
David Neily & Donald Cavanaugh
Neily and Cavanaugh were last seen in 2005 and 2006 on James Denoyer's Westport property--the same property where, in 2005, dozens of emaciated, starving horses were seized by animal control.
Click here to read our coverage of the case, or here for a Facebook page maintained by Neily's daughter.
LaMadrid was last seen by her brother in Fort Bragg in 2004. Though detectives investigated numerous leads, she's never been found.
Click here to read our coverage of LaMadrid's disappearance, or here for a website for anyone with info on her possible whereabouts.
Rick, who was involved in the burning of Fort Bragg's library and court--along with the Piedmont Hotel--in September 1987--was found dead the day before he was scheduled to testify to a federal grand jury in San Francisco. The police said he'd placed a shotgun between his legs and pulled the trigger with his toe; the evidence suggested otherwise.
To read our comprehensive account of the Fort Bragg Fires, buy our book, Mendocino Noir, here. Or, for the Cliff Notes version, click here.
Clyde Donald Stanley
Stanley's remains were found under a refrigerator near Blues Beach in March 1988. He'd been killed by multiple gunshots. Stanley, who was from Fort Bragg, was last seen a year prior in Willits.
Need I say more? Click here for our Bari file.
Pacheco was found strangled to death in September 1988 on Pearl Drive in Fort Bragg. She was 20.
Click here to read our coverage of her murder.
UPDATE: On July 16, 2013, Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman Identified a commercial fisherman, Robert James Parks, as Pacheco's killer. Parks committed suicide in 1998.
Krebs, 23, disappeared in 1993 after leaving Round Table Pizza on Highway 1. Her truck was found near MacKerricher State Park not long after, but she hasn't been seen since.
Click here for more details.