Loaded For Bear

by Bruce McEwen, February 1, 2017

The prelim for Eugene ‘Bear’ Lincoln and his sister Sonia Lincoln began last week and ended severed, like a live worm, both ends wriggling inconclusively on the conscience of the court.

Google maps of Covelo show the otherwise lovely area to be fairly covered in marijuana plantations, and the area where the Lincolns live, known as Little Valley, had been rendered on a large placard and displayed on an easel at the front of the courtroom.

The deputies and wardens involved in what defense attorney Brian Gregory characterized as a "raid," on July 27th, said they were able to connect nine grow sites to the Lincolns, a total of 8886 plants. Also, the stream running by the Lincoln residence had been diverted into a chemical pond, and from there was being pumped out to water the grows. This part of the testimony, by Warden Don Powers, was put on hold, however. For the present, DA David Eyster called Deputy Anthony Adrade to the stand.

Deputy Andrade pointed out the various grows, and gave the number of plants at each site, the names of the people involved and the types of firearms they were armed with. There was Juan Lucio Rivera, for instance, who told the deputy he worked for Oso (Spanish for Bear) and he would get 25% of the crop for his work. Deputy Espinoza spoke with another sharecropper who used the same moniker for his boss, and said he was paid $200 a day, plus he expected to get 25% of the profits. There were only 50 plants right at the Lincoln house and Sonia told Deputy Andrade that she watered these plants because her brother wasn’t getting around very well, as he’d recently had an operation for a hernia.

Deputy Andrade also found a spent 8mm Mauser casing and a couple of 12 gauge shotgun shells in Mr. Lincoln’s bedroom; there was a Mauser rifle and a 12 gauge shotgun at a nearby tent.

DA Eyster: “Did you speak to Mr. Lincoln?”

Andrade: “I did, yes.”

Eyster: “Did you advise him of his rights under Miranda?”

Andrade: “I did.”

Eyster: “Did he waive his rights and agree to speak with you?”

Andrade: “He did.”

Eyster: “What did he have to say?”

Andrade: “That only the plants near the house were his, and his sister’s.”

Eyster: “Did you speak to Sonia Lincoln?”

Andrade: “I did.”

Eyster: “Read her her rights?”

Andrade: “I did.”

Eyster: “Did she agree to speak to you?”

Andrade: “She did and she said she was watering the plants.”

Eyster: “How many gardens were there?”

Andrade: “Eight or nine… [looks at his report] …A total of nine in the immediate area.”

Eyster: “There were others?”

Andrade: “There were many others.”

Eyster: “But the nine you linked to these two defendants?”

Andrade: “Correct.”

Eyster: “Nothing further.”

Brian Gregory rose to cross: “Did you review your report before coming to court today?”

Andrade: “I did.”

Gregory: “Did you speak with anyone?”

Andrade: “Yes, to Mr. Eyster.”

Gregory: “What about Warden Powers?”

Andrade: “No.”

Gregory: “This Mr. Rivera – you spoke with him in English?”

Andrade: “Yes, some; but mostly through the interpreter, Deputy Vasquez.”

Gregory: “And what about Mr. Abandano?”

Andrade: “That would have been Deputy Espinoza. He’s the one [Abandano] that said Oso when they were talking about their bosses.”

Gregory: “So they had different bosses?”

Andrade: “No, that’s not what I said. Rivera said he worked for Mr. Lincoln."

Gregory: "You mean Bear?"

Andrade: "No, I mean Mr. Eugene Lincoln and Abandano said he worked for Oso – they were not supposed to talk to each other, only the bosses.”

It appears pot pharmas, those saintly do-gooders, are as eager to prevent labor unions, the first step in organizing being to compare pay – and Abandano was getting $200 a day more than Rivera. The pot growers are as anti-union as any other breed of capitalist running dog!

Gregory: “Did you have a police dog?”

Andrade: “I don’t remember if I did that day. There could have been.”

Gregory: “As to the tent the firearms were found in – was it clear that someone was living there?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And Mr. Lincoln’s residence was down the hill?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “You went there about 5:30 in the morning?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “Did you interview him [Lincoln]?”

Andrade: “Yes. He was ill, and not getting around very well.”

Gregory: “But both he and Sonia told you they had nothing to do with the other sites, that it was all Mexicans?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And Lincoln never denied Rivera worked for him ‘cause you never asked him, isn’t that true?”

Andrade: “He never denied it.”

Gregory: “During the raid…”

Andrade: “It wasn’t a raid. We were serving a search warrant.”

Gregory: “Recognize this map?”

Andrade: “I do. It’s a Google Map of the Little Valley.”

Gregory: “And you put the markings on it?”

Andrade: “I did. This is grow site number one, or Grow One, as it’s marked, with a pushpin, and the number of plants, 882. It’s just the general area.”

Gregory: “Juan Rivera was located there?”

Andrade: “He was located near the trailers.”

Gregory: “He had a weapon on him?”

Andrade: “It was a .357 revolver.”

Gregory: “And he told you he had nothing to do with anything but 25 plants. What about the 941 plants at Grow Site Number Two?”

Andrade: “There was another gun there, a Smith & Wesson .45 with ammunition and a black SKS [communist assault rifle], and the Mexican identification card of Jose Abandano. ”

Gregory: “He was located – where?”

Andrade: “I believe it was over here.”

Gregory: “At Grow Site Number Seven?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And there was also .45 and 7.62 x 39 mm ammunition [for the SKS] at Grow Site Two?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And a tent, right under the grow?”

Andrade: “Yes, there we found a Stevens over-under [20 gauge shotgun and .22 rifle combination] along with a 9mm Beretta.”

Gregory: “What about Grow Site Number Four?”

Andrade: There were 237 plants.”

Gregory: “And an AK-47 assault rifle with a 30-round banana clip?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

If the Iraqi Army was this well armed, Mosul would have fallen before the election!

Gregory: “Wasn’t there also 30 pounds of processed marijuana located at this site?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And eight or nine medical marijuana recommendations?”

Eyster: “Objection. Calls for a legal conclusion.”

Judge Moorman: “Overruled.”

Gregory: “Were any of the recommends expired?”

Andrade: “I don’t recall.”

Gregory: “But you found food and clothing there, didn’t you?”

Andrade: “Yes, and there were some 20 gauge shells in the tent.”

Gregory: “What about Grow Site Number Five?”

Andrade: “There were 941 plants, 20 pounds drying, five pounds processed.”

Gregory: “Was there a living quarters, a shed?”

Andrade: “Yes, and a Mexican identification card for Batista Cabrerra.”

Gregory: “What about Martin Hernandez Cruz?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And he told you he worked for a cat named Felix?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And this Felix brings him food?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “He had a Glock?”

Andrade: “He did.”

Gregory: “He was given this Glock by Felix?”

Andrade: “That’s what he said.”

Gregory: “And your dog tore him up pretty bad?”

Andrade: “My dog doesn’t tear people up!”

Gregory: “Well, there were some people pretty tore up.”

Judge Ann Moorman: “Stop! Stop it right now!”

Gregory: “Mr. Cruz told you he drove a white Prius?”

Andrade: “I’m not sure I wrote that down.”

Gregory: “Does Mr. Lincoln own a Prius?”

Andrade: “I don’t believe so.”

Gregory: “And wasn’t there, besides the Glock, a .30 caliber rifle at Grow Site Number Seven?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And you counted 2265 plants there?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And a tent – where?”

Andrade: “Right up here.”

Gregory: “That’s where you found Jose Abandano?”

Andrade: “The SWAT team found him there, yes.”

Gregory: “He told you people came up there to shoot deer?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And he told you he did not work for Bear, didn’t he?”

Andrade: “Mr. Lincoln, yes.”

Gregory: “And there were only 50 plants next to the Lincoln residence, Grow Site Number Eight?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And at Grow Site Number Nine there were 870 plants?”

Andrade: “Yes. And all these grow sites were connected by interconnecting, well-worn paths, that led from the Lincoln residence.”

Gregory: “But couldn’t some on this road, this ridge road here, couldn’t they access those grow sites, as well?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “What about this Grow Site Number Ten, here?”

Andrade: “Sergeant Smith was down there.”

Eyster: “That one’s not included in the charges.”

Gregory: “What about Grow Site Number Eleven?”

Eyster: “No, not included in the charges.”

Gregory: “But weren’t these people all growing pot and armed?”

Eyster: “Objection, relevance.”

Moorman: “What’s the relevance?”

Gregory: “Well, your honor, there’s a pattern here.”

Moorman: “What’s the pattern?”

Gregory: “That they were all growing marijuana, and they didn’t want to talk to anyone.”

Moorman: “I’ll allow it.”

Gregory: “Mr. Lincoln told you he had had a hernia operation and wasn’t able to get around?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “He told you someone named Rudy Pike was responsible for one of the grows?’

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And he told you that he told Rudy not to come back and that people had to be legal. And another nearby grow belonged to Martin Pena?”

Andrade: “That’s right.”

Gregory: “But you never arrested Mr. Pena, did you?”

Andrade: “No.”

Gregory: “What about Felix? Did you arrest him?”

Andrade: “No.”

Gregory: “And no Rudy Pike, yet he [Lincoln] told you Pena and Pike brought their friends there to grow?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And he told you he did not know there thousands of plants growing around there?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And Sonia Lincoln told you they lived in mortal fear of their neighbors, and that one had threatened to kill her, did she not?”

Andrade: “She did.”

Gregory: “And they both told you they could not keep people off because it was heirship [inherited] land?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “And she told you they [she and her brother] were affiliated with each other, but not with any of the others?”

Andrade: “Yes.”

Gregory: “Did she tell you the neighbors were often shooting guns?”

Moorman: “I get it. There’s people with guns growing marijuana all around.”

Eyster: “This case is about a felon with guns, and there’s environmental damage, water taken from a blocked up stream, pumped into a chemical pond, and on to various grow sites.”

Moorman: “So, it’s your contention that Mr. Lincoln and Ms. Lincoln were responsible?”

Eyster: “Yes, judge.”

Moorman: “You had some questions about the Lincoln’s wealth, Mr. Gregory. What’s the relevance?”

Gregory: “Well, my contention is that it’s indicative that someone that has a woodstove as a sole source of heat and an outhouse couldn’t afford a set up like this.”

Moorman: “Deputy, was there any indicia of opulence? Did you find any large amounts of cash?”

Andrade: “No. I did not.”

Gregory: “Who were the owners of the property?”

Andrade: “I don’t recall.”

Gregory: “But it wasn’t Eugene or Sonia Lincoln, was it?”

Andrade: “No, not them.”

Gregory: “Why were Pike and Pena not arrested?”

Andrade: “We couldn’t get a hold of Pike or Pena, or any of the others.”

Gregory: “Were you aware of who Bear Lincoln was?”

Eyster: “Objection. Relevance.”

Moorman: “What’s the relevance, Mr. Gregory?”

Gregory: “Well, it goes to whether Mr. Lincoln is still being blamed for the death of Deputy Davis, for which he was acquitted in 1995.”

Moorman: “Then just ask him that?”

Gregory: “Are you aware of those incidents?”

Andrade: “I am. I was only 12 years old at the time, but I remember.”

Gregory: “That’s all I have.”

Moorman: “We’ll resume on February 2nd at 10:00.”

A witness for defense was unavailable because her daughter had been in an explosion and was scheduled to have her leg amputated on Thursday. The testimony had left the impression that Little Valley was about as conducive to peace and well-being as East Allepo last summer.

* * *

STEVEN PATRICK RYAN was held to answer on first degree murder charges at the close of his prelim last Friday. He will have to convince a jury he shot and killed DeShaun Davis, a former Mendocino college student and football player, in self defense. Ryan is white, Davis black.The questions his defense attorney posed to homicide Detective Clint Wyant failed to convince Judge John Behnke that the shooting was self-defense; and, in fact, showed Mr. Ryan to be something of a gun-nut who indulges himself in vivid fantasies about shooting people. Ryan demonstrated that he is thoroughly versed in the all jargon of police officers and hit men, and seemed to be showing off his firearm knowledge repertoire when interviewed by Detective Wyant.Assistant Public Defender Carly Dolan asked the detective if her client had mentioned his knowledge of how important it is not to shoot an attacker before he comes within 20 feet, for instance. Wyant answered Yes, he had said that; and, Yes, it was considered crucial to do something when a suspect came that close. But the detective stopped short of saying he would have shot her — the hypothetical Q&A had somehow been framed in the second person, so Wyant was saying, “I wouldn’t have shot you in those same or similar circumstances.”Ryan had also used phrases like, “a double tap to the chest and head,” and other crime novel language in the interview with Detective Wyant, making it plain he was well read in the genre, as well as lots of terminology from gun magazines. It seemed clear to this reporter that the guy had an itchy trigger finger and was eager to act out some of his fantasies.Ryan told the detective that the late Mr. Davis had threatened his life before throwing down his bicycle and charging Ryan, that he was grabbing at his baggy clothing like he was going for a gun; that Davis had claimed to have been in the Marines; that he was coming within the danger zone of 20 feet; that he had no choice but to shoot. Yes, Ryan had told the detective all this, but there was an eyewitness, Elvia Valencia, and she heard none of the threats — supposedly shouted by Davis in anger — and said that Davis merely laid his bike down and was walking toward Ryan when Ryan shot three times, the first two in rapid succession (the “double tap”), then a third shot. Davis’s body was 63 feet — three times the danger zone — from where Ryan was standing.There had been some commotion the day before when the police had chased a fugitive through the neighborhood just off Vichy Springs Road, Ukiah, and on November 21st, the next day, Ryan was on his back porch drinking coffee when he heard someone shouting out front. As he went through his house to the front he picked up a .45 automatic and stuck it in the back of his waistband. He then went out on the front porch and said to Davis, “Can I help you?”Ms. Valeria told the detective she was getting her children out of her car at her mother’s house, next door to Ryan’s, when Davis and Ryan began arguing. She heard Ryan accuse Davis of trespassing before Davis began walking toward Ryan and she heard two shots. She looked up and saw Davis on his knees. Then Ryan fired again.This third shot would have been a mistake even if Davis had broken into Ryan’s house — invaded his castle, as the saying goes — but Valencia said that at no time did Davis come on to Ryan’s property.A jury will have to decide now, and it doesn’t look good for Ryan. Ms. Valencia considered herself a friend of Ryan’s and Ryan himself attested that her testimony could be believed. No trial date has been set as yet, but Ryan will be back in two weeks for arraignment.Given the presentation, Ryan will be lucky to get a plea bargain for less than life-without.

One Response to Loaded For Bear

  1. james marmon Reply

    February 4, 2017 at 6:53 am

    Breaking news McEwen, the Cartel controls most the grows in Covelo. Eyster is just following through with Allman’s wishes, they hate Bear. Bear was probably being paid to let the Cartel grow on his land, that’s how it works. Allman should go after the real criminals, they always say they were just working for the Senor or Senorita, Eyster knows that.

    In the City of Clearlake where growing is permitted this goes on all the time after the sheriff’s “Operation Full Press” chased them out of the woods The Cartels bought up every empty lot in Clearlake they could. My neighbor was being held by gunpoint to grow for the Cartel. This is nothing but a “Bear” hunt, Allman’s revenge for his friend’s death in which Bear was acquitted of.

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