Evil Deeds

by Bruce McEwen, May 31, 2017

Has Your Adult Self Spent Time With Your Inner Child Today? 

— Title and Subtitle borrowed from a Psychology Today article by Stephen A. Diamond, PhD.

* * *

Kidd

Strohmeier’s car lot on North State Street had eleven cars vandalized the night of April 27th, and as Deputy Gregory Clegg was coming down North State Street from Redwood Valley to investigate the damage he passed Jared Kidd at Hensley Creek Road. Kidd is a “frequent flyer” in the Sheriff’s Booking Log, and well known to law enforcement.

No one had seen the vandal, but a Mr. Walker had heard yelling and the sounds of plastic being smashed. One of the cars had a footprint on it, a footprint with the word “Nike” legible on it, in middle of the other tread marks, which the deputy called “alphas.”

Deputy Clegg went back to talk to Mr. Kidd, deep in controversy with himself, was yelling and throwing his arms around, gesturing violently. The deputy told Kidd to sit on the curb where he saw that Kidd was wearing Nike sneakers. The sole of Kidd’s sneakers matched the footprint on one of the damaged cars at Strohmeier’s, and Jared Kidd was placed under arrest.

Jay Pitchford of the Office of the Public Defender began his cross-examination of Deputy Clegg: “You were dispatched at around 11pm?”

Clegg: “I got the call at 11:15.”

Pitchford: “Do you recall how long it was before you arrived?”

Clegg: “I don’t.”

Pitchford: “Can you estimate it?”

Clegg: “I really can’t. I was in Redwood Valley.”

Pitchford: “Would 10 minutes be a fair guess?”

Clegg: “Sure.”

Pitchford: “Were you on another call?”

Clegg: “Yes.”

Pitchford: “Did you have to finish that up first?”

Clegg: “I was on an assist with my partner, and he took over, so yes, I finished up.”

Pitchford: “On your way down State Street, you first saw a person in black clothing, near Hensley Creek and North State Street, correct?”

Clegg: “Yes.”

Pitchford: “So then when you got to the car lot and saw the damaged vehicles— but isn’t it possible they had been damaged at some time prior to when you got the call.

Clegg: “It is possible.”

Pitchford: “The damage to the rear camera on the Honda, was that readily visible?”

Clegg: “No, I found that the next day.”

Pitchford: “Now, Mr. Walker, he didn’t tell you he actually saw anyone in the car lot did he?”

Glegg: “That’s correct.”

Pitchford: “Did you see anyone else on the roadway or sidewalk?”

Clegg: “No.”

Pitchford: “Did any cars pass on State Street?”

Clegg: “Yes, several.”

Pitchford: “Did you go directly back to the individual you saw?”

Clegg: “I went to the same area.”

Pitchford: “And you told Mr. Walker you’d seen someone yelling?”

Clegg: “I did.”

Pitchford: “It was dark?”

Clegg: “Yes sir.”

Pitchford: “So there could have been others in the area you didn’t see?”

Clegg: “There could have been, yes.”

Pitchford: “Have you had previous contacts with Mr. Kidd?”

Clegg: “Yes sir.”

Pitchford: “How many?”

Clegg: “No less than five.”

Pitchford: “What made you decide to contact him?”

Clegg: “He was in the area and walking away from a crime scene.”

Pitchford: “Was there anything about his behavior that made you suspicious?”

Clegg: “He was yelling and flailing his arms, that’s why I made him sit down on the curb.”

Pitchford: “Did he say anything about the car lot?”

Clegg: “He did not.”

Pitchford: “Did you take his shoes after you detained him?”

Clegg: “I took them at the booking room at the jail.”

Pitchford: “Do you know what model of Nike the shoes were?”

Clegg: “The Air Max 90.”

PItchford: “Are you an expert – or was there a tag on the shoes?”

Clegg: “I’m just familiar with sneakers.”

Pitchford: “Do you know many people in Ukiah who wear Air Nikes?”

Clegg: “Several.”

Pitchford: “Can you give me a number?”

Clegg: “No.”

Pitchford: “Did you take the shoe size?”

Clegg: “I did not.”

Pitchford: “So you didn’t match the shoe to the print on the car?”

Clegg: “No, I just held it up and it looked the same.”

Pitchford: “Safe to say it could have been a different size?”

Clegg: “I couldn’t answer that.”

Pitchford: “Okay. Now, as to the general manager, did you ask him if there was any surveillance cameras at the car lot?”

Clegg: “You mean Mr. Harp?”

Pitchford: “Yes.”

Clegg: “No.”

Pitchford: “That’s all I have.”

Deputy DA Elizabeth Norman: “What else did Mr. Harp tell you?”

Clegg: “He said he was familiar with Mr. Kidd.”

Pitchford: “How do they close the lot?”

Clegg: “With a metal cable, so cars can’t get in. But you can still walk in.”

Norman: “Did Mr. Kidd appear to be under the influence of anything?”

Pitchford: “Objection, relevance.”

Judge Keith Faulder: “What’s the relevance to a vandalism charge?”

Norman: “Alright, I’ll withdraw it.”

Pitchford: “Would Mr. Harp’s statement that Mr. Kidd had previously stolen a car from there, wouldn’t that also be irrelevant?”

Judge Faulder: “I don’t think so.”

Norman: “The evidence is circumstantial, but when the children have berries on their mouths and there’s a wrecked pie we can safely assume what happened and in this case we have the footprint on the vehicle and a person in the area with a matching shoe. We have no eyewitness but we have someone who heard yelling and slamming and plastic breaking.”

Pitchford: “The smoking gun is a shoe and no one bothered to put it up there and see if it was exactly the same – quite a few individuals in the world wear Nike sneakers, so it could have been anyone, but Mr. Kidd was there and Deputy Clegg knew him, so he was arrested for nothing more than being a rowdy individual, that’s the only evidence the State has.”

Norman: “The defendant has some sort of focus on this place. He stole a car from there and although many people wear shoes like his, they do not have the same history with the car lot, and no one else appeared to be in the area.”

Pitchford: “There could have been.”

Judge Faulder: “First, a felony has been committed, the vandalism was over $1400 and while we have no eyewitness, we do have what you might call an ‘ear witness,’ that is, someone who heard the slamming and breaking of plastic, so there’s probable cause. Then we have a prior stolen vehicle from the same place, which gives the defendant perhaps a motive, and both Matt Walker and Deputy Clegg describe him as yelling and flailing his arms, so I think there’s probable cause your client, Mr. Pitchford, committed the felony vandalism, and we’ll have him back on June 17th for arraignment on the information. Did you say you were going to argue for a 17b Mr. Pitchford?

Pitchford: “Yes, your honor. In terms of the alleged $1400 in damage, it could be paid off in restitution and this should be only a misdemeanor with probation.”

Norman: “When I first saw Mr. Kidd, I thought he was only a boy, a child, but he’s not a child, he’s a man who acts like a child, and does childish things. He went to prison for vehicle theft because he couldn’t obey the terms of his probation, and when he got out he started right in committing crime after crime after crime, so we know he won’t succeed at probation, and I seriously doubt he’d ever pay any restitution.”

Pitchford: “These cases, all these open cases are misdemeanors, 647f’s [drunk in public], trespassing, petty thefts, drugs… But I don’t see a person running around hurting individuals — just a problem with drugs and alcohol, your honor.”

Judge Faulder: “And how do you propose we address these multiple open cases?”

Pitchford: “We could give him probation instead of a jail sentence and hold it over his head!”

Judge Faulder: “Humm. I’m going to deny your 17b motion, Mr. Pitchford. I don’t think he’s earned it, and we’ll put it on for arraignment on the felony vandalism charges.”

Judge Faulder was filling in for Judge Moorman. He appears to be adapting rapidly to the rigors of judgeship and taking on more and more responsibility.

* * *

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the cowboy-booted prosecutor, Scott McMenomey, had Covelo Cowboy Linden Duke (formerly a tribal cop) on the stand:

“Mr. Duke, you fired a weapon?”

Duke: “Why yes, yessir, that I did. I drew my revolver and fired.”

McMenomey: Where did you point it?”

Duke: “Into the dirt.”

McMenomey: “Mr. Wilburn was coming at you with a two-by-four?”

Duke: “Yessir; that he was.”

McMenomey: “How close was he to you?”

Duke: “I dunno… maybe 10 or 15 feet, I’d say.”

McMenomey: “Prior to Miss Horne calling you, where had you been?”

Duke: “I’d just come back from the barn where I’d gone to feed my horses. She’d called once before, and I just caught the second call.”

McMenomey: “The People rest.”

Anthony Adams of the Office of the Public Defender: “Do you wear glasses, Mr. Duke?”

Duke: “I do not, sir! Just readers.”

Adams: “When was the last time you were on the property?”

Duke: “The day before.”

Adams: “Do you recall what Mr. Wilburn was wearing?”

Duke: “An orange hoody and black jeans.”

Adams: “Do you have any law enforcement training?”

Duke: “That I do, sir.”

Adams: “Can you give me the height of Mr. Wilburn?”

Duke: “Oh I’d say five-nine, maybe.”

Adams: “And an approximate weight?”

Duke: “About one-eighty, I’d say.”

Adams: “That’s all I have.”

McMenomey: “How certain are you that it was Anthony Wilburn?”

Duke: “I’m certain.”

Wilburn

Adams: “Defense calls Mr. Anthony Wilburn.”

Judge John Behnke: “Mr. Wilburn, you have a right to not to take the stand — in fact, let me just read it to you from Cal Crim 355…”

Wilburn consulted with Adams, then took the stand.

Adams: “You are alleged to have been on Mr. Duke’s property – were you there?”

Wilburn: “No, I was at my mother’s place in Covelo, sleeping.”

Adams: “How did you become aware you were a suspect in this case?”

Wilburn: “Somebody woke me up and said my name was on the scanner.”

Adams: “What did you do?”

Wilburn: “I went back to sleep.”

Adams: “You heard Mr. Duke say you were wearing an orange hoody – do you own an orange hoody?”

Wilburn: “I do not.”

Adams: “He says he’s known you since you were a youth – do you know him?”

Wilburn: “I do not.”

Adams: “Did you know where he lives?”

Wilburn: “No, and I still don’t.”

Adams: “Nothing further.”

McMenomey: “Do you remember being at the market the day before?”

Wilburn: “I’m not sure.”

McMenomey: “Do you own any hoodies?”

Wilburn: “No, just a leather jacket.”

McMenomey: “On April 30th did you get in a fight with anybody?”

Adams: “Objection, relevance.”

Behnke: “It seems relevant… I’ll allow it.”

McMenomey: “Did you?”

Wilburn: “Nah.”

McMenomey: “Remember being contacted by Tribal Police?”

Wilburn: “Nah.”

McMenomey: “Remember saying, ‘I’m sooo drunk’…?”

Wilburn: “Nah.”

McMenomey: “Remember being tazed?”

Wilburn: “Yeah, I remember that.”

McMenomey: “So you were at your mother’s house asleep?”

Wilburn: “Yeah.”

McMenomey: “What room were you in?”

Wilburn: “I was in the living room on the floor.”

McMenomey: “What were you wearing?”

Wilburn: “Black shorts and a tank-top.”

McMenomey: “You have anything to eat?”

Wilburn: “A sandwich.”

McMenomey: “What kind?”

Wilburn: “Salami.”

McMenomey: “What time?”

Wilburn: “I dunno. I went outside and smoked a couple of cigarettes. I stayed at my mother’s the whole day. I looked in the fridge and there was some salami, so I ate it, just plain, no sandwich.”

McMenomey: “What time did you go to sleep?”

Wilburn: “I don’t know. It wasn’t late. I watched some TV and dozed off.”

McMenomey: “What were you watching?”

Wilburn: “I don’t know.”

McMenomey: “What time did you wake up?”

Wilburn: “I don’t have a watch.”

McMenomey: “What were you drinking?”

Wilburn: “Vodka.”

McMenomey: “What kind?”

Adams: “Relevance?”

Behnke: “The scope of cross is relatively broad, and one of the issues is whether it was him. Objection overruled.”

Adams: “This is clearly badgering, you honor.”

Behnke: “I’ve heard the objection and overruled it.”

McMenomey: “Where’d you get the vodka?”

Wilburn: “It was in the area and I took a drink of it.”

McMenomey: “No more questions.”

Adams called Deputy James who told how he’d spoken with Ms. Horne, who saw Wilburn go into Linden Duke’s trailer from across the street at her home and told him he’d better go check it out.

Apparently Mr. Duke didn’t live in the trailer. Then Adams was going to put Wilburn’s cousin, Alicia Joaquin on the stand, but after she admitted to having a couple of felonies, including a conviction for perjury, Judge Behnke appointed her a lawyer, Patricia Littlefield, who talked Ms. Joaquin out of taking the stand. This all took up most of the afternoon. Then Scott McMenomey went to look for another witness, and came back with Lois Horne.

McMenomey: “Do you know Anthony Wilburn?”

Horne: “Just to see him. I’ve never spoken to him.”

McMenomey: “Do you see him in the courtroom today?”

Horne: “That’s him in the orange jumpsuit.”

McMenomey: “May the record reflect that the witness has identified the defendant?”

Behnke: “She has.”

McMenomey: “Did you see him on the property of Linden Duke?”

Horne: “Yes. He came down the road and turned and went into the property.”

McMenomey: “See him leave?”

Horne: “After a while he came out and went back down the road.”

Adams: “How much time passed before he came out?”

Horne: “Not very long, ‘cause I was fixing breakfast and I called Linden and told him somebody was over there in his trailer, so I’d say maybe it was 10 or 15 minutes.”

Adams: “How far away is it?”

Horne: “Not very far, just across the road, maybe 30 feet or so.”

Adams: “Do you remember what he was wearing?”

Horne: “A red sweatshirt and jeans.”

Adams: “A hoody?”

Horne: “Yes.”

Adams: “Did you hear a gunshot?”

Horne: “No, I didn’t.”

There were some more questions about the breakfast Ms. Horne was making for her grandson, and then Judge Behnke said he found the evidence sufficient to suspect that Anthony Shane Wilburn had entered the residence and waived a 2x4 in the presence of Mr. Duke, in violation of Penal Code 245 a. 1.

Behnke: “The actual assault was a little wishy-washy but sufficient for a holding order.”

The evidence for a felony vandalism fell short, however, and was judged merely a misdemeanor. Arraignment on the information gleaned from the prelim was set for June 8th.

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