Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2017
by AVA News Service, August 16, 2017
FORT BRAGG CITY MANAGER ANNOUNCES RETIREMENT
Fort Bragg City Manager Linda Ruffing has announced her retirement, effective January 12, 2018. Ms. Ruffing has served as the City Manager of Fort Bragg since 2006. Prior to that, she served as Fort Bragg’s Community Development Director for nearly seven years. According to Ms. Ruffing, “It has been a great honor to serve as Fort Bragg’s City Manager and I am very proud of the work that we have accomplished over the years. That said, I’m looking forward to retiring from the City and starting the next chapter of my life.”
City Manager Ruffing’s many accomplishments include: negotiating the purchase of the recently-opened Noyo Headlands Park on Fort Bragg’s coastline; negotiating the transfer of the $25 million C.V. Starr Community Center to City ownership along with revenue measures to help fund operation of the facility; shepherding the Noyo Center for Marine Science from its inception in 2005 to its successful transition to a non-profit Board of Directors.
Ms. Ruffing has guided the City through many challenges during her tenure. She is credited for her successful efforts to maintain service levels and to stabilize and strengthen Fort Bragg’s financial position during the Great Recession. She has been deeply involved in planning for reuse of the former Georgia-Pacific Mill Site property in Fort Bragg since the mill’s closure in 2002 and has led the City’s oversight process for the environmental remediation. She also served as the City’s coordinator for the legal team which successfully defended the City in a multi-million dollar Superfund lawsuit related to remediation of the Mill Site.
Fort Bragg Mayor Lindy Peters states, “Fort Bragg has been very fortunate to have City Manager Linda Ruffing at the helm for the past 12 years. She is a talented and effective leader who has dedicated many years of her career to our community. I wish her all the best when she retires early next year.”
(City of Fort Bragg News Release)
ATTORNEY LINDSAY PEAK has resigned her post as a misdemeanor lawyer at the Office of the Public defender, as of last Friday afternoon, according to the DA's Office. The OPD has no truck with the AVA, and Ms. Peak herself has been especially standoffish toward America's Last Newspaper, even though we were more than fair to her in our coverage of her recent DUI trial. That trial ended in a mistrial, but the DA's Office has refiled, and the case is set to go forward next week; and so the timing of her resignation is perhaps an indication of Ms. Peak's prospects for acquittal. (Bruce McEwen)
SETTLER CASE (LAYTONVILLE'S POT MURDER)
The preliminary hearing in the murder of Laytonville pot pharmer Jeffery Settler got underway Monday, but most of the first day was taken up with pleas from three of the seven defendants. Zachary Wuester, Gary “Giggles” Fitzgerald, and Said “Richie” Mohamed each pled to nine years in the state prison with the understanding that they would all have to waive credit for time served up until the date of sentencing, and the stipulation that they would not be labeled as “stabbers” in Mr. Settler’s murder.
Wuester, Fitzgerald, Mohamed, Kane
Mr. Fitzgerald took the most time, telling the judge that he was suffering from the after-effects of LSD, and then spent a long time in consultation with his lawyer. “Giggles” has pulled similar stunts in his interviews with the homicide detectives involved in the case and perhaps this is how he earned his picturesque nickname.
When the hearing resumed on Tuesday, defendant Jesse Wells was absent, having told the jailers that he didn’t feel well. Judge John Behnke ordered that Wells be brought to court anyway, as it had been difficult enough arranging a date when all the lawyers and witnesses could be present. However, after Wells was brought in he continued to complain of his health to his lawyer, Jan Cole-Wilson of the Office of the Alternate Public Defender, who, after putting her hand on her client’s forehead (presumably to test his temperature, and ascertain if he had a fever)* asked the judge for a continuance until Wednesday because her client had not been able to sleep the night before, and was having trouble staying awake.
Detective Luis Espinoza was on the stand, and it looked to be a grueling day as all four of the remaining lawyers would be given opportunity for cross-examination, so it was decided to put a detective from Ashland, Oregon, on the stand, taking the stand out of order, so he could be on his way without waiting another day until defendant Wells was feeling better.
Detective Von Stewart was called and told the court how he'd been contacted by Detective Moskey [sic] — meaning the lead Mendo investigator, Detective Matt Croskey, who now can’t seem to shake the accidental moniker, which the bailiffs were quick make stick.
Detective Stewart duly received a photo line-up which he showed to co-worker of defendant Michael Kane for a positive ID. Kane’s lawyer, Ethan Ballogh, then asked Detective Stewart if he’d been told the nature of the case, to which Stewart answered No, and added that he still didn’t know what it was all about. Stewart was then excused and Wells returned to the jail, with the prelim set to resume the following morning at 9:30.
*The late County Jail shrink, Dr. Doug Rossof, I’ve been reliably informed, used to have a diagnosis for the kinds of maladies that murder suspects suffer from during court proceedings; he called it “situational depression.”
FORT BRAGG NOTES
by Rex Gressett
The buzz was all over town. The City Council had been rumored to be in closed session discussion over the continuing employment of Linda Ruffing, Fort Bragg’s controversial authoritarian City Manager. The information was anecdotal but the supporters of Linda Ruffing evidently believed it and were massively emailing and facebooking ahead of the Monday night City Council meeting. Heavy attendance was anticipated.
Over the last few city council meetings a surprise deficit and the emergency transfer of $3 million bucks back into the water and sewer fund from whence it came had quietly amazed the city. The sharp increase in water and sewer rates long planned and voted on in 2013 suddenly acquired a sinister implication.
The casual non-transparency of city management from behind which most policies are released at opportune disjointed intervals had itself become the focus of community concern. The smooth presentation of policy carefully controlled by Linda Ruffing’s total control of the council agenda was looking strained and artificial which of course it is.
The $3 million bucks was spent out of the general fund from money which you thought you were paying for your water and sewer charges. The general fund is legally separate from the water and sewer “enterprise funds” as they are called. General fund money covers salaries and toys, new cars, electric parking violation golfcarts, the new drone, etc. etc. And did I mention salaries? If the money was transferred deliberately it would have been an egregious violation of law, but since the council had the sincere assurances of the city manager that it as a $3 million simple bookkeeping mistake, no further consideration of the matter was contemplated by a city council I would characterize as stunned and out of their depth.
I took the opportunity to ask the mayor at his open meeting Monday morning if he was ok with the bookkeeping error explanation and the glib bubbling dismissal of the whole matter by the city manager as insignificant and essentially water under the municipal bridge.
I am not an accountant, said Mayor Lindy Peters, looking pained and pious, which is how he looks at me most of the time. I have no desire to put it back on the agenda, he bespoke; there are more important things we have to do; let’s move on; I am not inclined to take further action; I am not inclined to take further action.
I understood his slight redundancy to be a means of emphasis.
Not all the city council members are so sanguine.
Linda Ruffing’s $4 thousand dollar a week salary is almost exactly half of the total deficit. That deficit would be the money we are still in the hole for after the emergency repayment to water and sewer. Just saying.
All of this came up inconveniently at the exact moment that Linda Ruffing was getting a cute little pay raise. Nothing in comparison to the big bucks she is already getting from the city, but important to her I am sure. This pay raise was paddling down the stream of unexamined city policy when Bernie Norvell pulled it from the Agenda and sent the matter to closed session. This was the closed session meeting that apparently leaked to the Linda Ruffing loyalists.
A DIVIDED FORT BRAGG
From: Ginny Rorby
Subject: Linda Ruffing one opinion
One Opinion: People ask what Linda Ruffing has done to earn such enmity. Dislike for Ruffing goes back to our town's big split. When the Deputy Sheriff was killed out by Ward Avenue, our police chief suffered a nervous collapse. He took 30 days medical leave. Ruffing appointed an interim chief, whose name was put on his door at the station. According to the absent chief's wife, that was the height of disrespect, so much disrespect that the old chief found it impossible to return to his job, and at a Council meeting, his wife read aloud his letter of resignation. The group supporting the chief had a hand-picked candidate to be the next chief and when the job went to a Latino instead, they felt doubly insulted. (A person who sat on the selection committee said the group's candidate showed up convinced he had the job, and totally unprepared.). This unrest moved on to the issue of letting Hospitality House buy the Old Coast hotel and offer services for the homeless and mentally ill. The group sued the City. They tried to get Mayor Dave Turner recalled. And lost both efforts. There is a relation to this “unrest” many people are not happy. I did not think this was a good use for this property, but did not speak out as it was a legal use for the building. I still think it was a bad decision but it was legal. This group (on Facebook, they are Fort Bragg Wellness), spews hatred toward anyone who disagrees with them--Hospitality House, Progressive Fort Bragg (young people coming back here to start businesses). For some reason, they see Linda Ruffing as the root of all their troubles. You really believe this crap? They were able to get two council members elected in the last city election. I can’t vote in the city but in this country we can still speak, last time I checked anyway. Since the group has not been able to win in court, the new council members have turned to anecdotal evidence. I'm paraphrasing: "I was at a wedding with 200 people and they don't think we're doing a good job." "I walk the streets asking business people about Hospitality House and it's causing trouble." "If the police chief doesn't support ICE gang sweeps, we are letting potential killers run loose in our community." Have no idea what court you are talking about. Who are these folks? Where do they meet? Fort Bragg is well run. Financially sound (which we certainly weren't in our first few years here). Ruffing may rub people the wrong way, but she guides a sound ship. Who is “we”? You live in the city? You own a business? The trouble isn't Ruffing, it's a small group who want to make Fort Bragg great again by returning to the good old days--when developers could build view-blocking motels next to the Noyo River; when an asphalt plant was considered a great idea for the mill-site; and the Town almost declared bankruptcy. you need a history lesson on this one. Tom Lonergan the former city attorney warned the city not to do what they did on the North Cliff. Cost the city about a million dollars. Tom was correct.
I will be forwarding this to a few, and await your corrections to this inaccurate email.
Re: FW: Linda Ruffing one opinion
Ginny this email is not only incorrect, it is an outright lie in regard to the copy below these words. As one of those that was there when the folks spoke to the Chief Mayberry issue, this is totally wrong. I would like you to send an email to EVERYONE you sent this to that you have been notified it is not factual. We were all there to support the Chief we had, Scott Mayberry. I request you stop this one sided email string now. The group supporting the chief had a hand-picked candidate to be the next chief and when the job went to a Latino instead, they felt doubly insulted. (A person who sat on the selection committee said the group's candidate showed up convinced he had the job, and totally unprepared).
Based on your words, are you insinuating those there were racist? For supporting the Police Chief that was hired by the City of Fort Bragg?
Is this One Opinion yours? It would be assumed to be yours as you sent it. Remove me from your email lists. I don’t have time for this garbage. Also see my comments below.
Re: Linda Ruffing one opinion
I am appalled by the lack of actual knowledge on the situation or of the people who were born and raised here and what WE have to say about it!!!! Talk to anyone who has graduated from Fort Bragg High!!! Talk to anyone who was born in the Gray Whale Inn when it was a hospital. Talk to anyone who has Fort Bragg, California on their birth certificate!!! Those are the people that attend the weddings where these things are said to our City Council members. We are the people who meet at businesses and private homes to discuss the issues that your dear friend Linda Ruffing has caused!!! We discuss how a handful of people have MOVED here from out of the area and decided that they know better than us on how to run OUR TOWN!!!! People like you should sit and listen. Don’t open your mouth or touch your computer until you have the facts lady!!! And NO!!!! Roberta Mayberry did not read her husband’s resignation, Brad Gardner did. And NO!!!! Roberta did NOT publicly announce that the chief had a nervous breakdown. Your claims in your email are just as screwed up as your claims of how Linda Ruffing has done anything positive for this community!!! All that woman has done is TAKE from our CITY!!!
Very Sincerely Yours,
Re: Linda Ruffing one opinion plus two
Just to be clear, I didn’t write the opinion piece re: Linda Ruffing and the City Council members. I forwarded it because I thought it was worth reading. I think it’s only fair to balance it out with an opinions from the other side. I received these yesterday afternoon.
A UKIAH HISTORY PHOTO: The first commercial airplane to arrive at the Ukiah airport was this Southwest Airways plane, which landed in the summer of 1947. Southwest Airways, which linked small California communities with larger cities, had regularly scheduled flights to the Ukiah airport for the next several years.
(Photo courtesy of Ed Bold - from the Foster family)
LIBRARY SYSTEM OUTAGE WEDS. & THURS.
We'll be upgrading our software systems on Wednesday, August 16th & Thursday, August 17th. You'll still be able to checkout items if you bring your library card & use the public computers/wifi, but you won't be able to place requests, search the catalog, or checkout e-books & databases.
* * *
It's the last Kids' Farmers Market of the year on Wednesday, August 16th from 12pm-2pm. Don't miss the delicious treats and homemade crafts from the kids! Next meeting this Saturday, August 19th from 3-4pm, all teens are welcome!
* * *
Join us for a reading with Theresa Whitehill, Poet Laureate Emeritus of Ukiah!! A California poet, graphic designer, and letterpress printer, Theresa will be visiting the Ukiah Library on Saturday, August 26^th. Open mic follows. Teens & adults are invited to share poems in any form or style. A California poet, graphic designer, and letterpress printer, Theresa Whitehill served as Poet Laureate for the city of Ukiah from 2009 through 2011 and has been involved her entire career in production of poetry readings and events. Whitehill’s two collections of poetry, A Grammar of Longing (2009) and A Natural History of Mill Towns (1993), were both published by Pygmy Forest Press. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, please contact Melissa at the Ukiah Library: 467-6434 or firstname.lastname@example.org
REBECCA JOHNSON OPEN STUDIO
Save the date Sept 10
Hello Friends, art lovers, studio visitors,
I am having an open studio, September 10, featuring 7 barns new work.
In Seven Barns, a new series of works for 2017, Rebecca Johnson creates bas-relief constructions integrating salvaged barn siding from local structures, set against simple and quiet pastoral scenes. Through her evocative work, Johnson breathes new life into these once-integral parts of the human landscape. Every piece of barn siding carries its own history — in the patterns of the weathered wood, remnants of long-worn paint, and nicks and scars that make up their individual topography. Johnson gives these fragments of the past a new home, pausing time temporarily, and placing them in a Zen-minimalist vision of the rolling hills found just outside her studio door — sky, land, horizon, and barn. Hope to see you.
WHEN I FIRST MET MR. RIGHT, I had no idea his first name was Always.
— Rita Rudner
THOUGHTS ON FORT BRAGG'S HOMELESS
Subject: Homeless Action Plan, public safety committee
To: Fort Bragg Public Safety Committee
I would like to share my observations and thoughts on revamping the responses of our city to the homeless, problem. In reading the minutes of your committee from 6/21, I disagree that our local homeless problem stems from poverty or lack of housing.
If 80-90% of our transients suffer from mental illness and/or substance abuse disorders, these problems must be addressed before housing can be considered. Poverty results from these two problems, and is not usually the basic cause. Providing free food, shelter, clothing and other necessities, which has been the thrust of homeless services here, simply enables transients to stay stuck in an endless non-productive cycle, with more spending money to maintain substance abuse. I notice a complete omission of any job training programs, or even work-for-food policies, which I believe are crucial to ending the cycles of homelessness and dependency. 'Work' is not a dirty word.
My opinions, btw, come from my family history. Like thousands of other Americans, my father was homeless during the Great Depression. Handouts and services were rare or non-existent. The only indoor shelter was jail. He worked his way west, on foot or in boxcars, working along the way until he found a place with a WPA program, offering room and board with vocational training that enabled him to find better jobs, become a contributing member of society, and eventually a very successful businessman, who could send his own children to colleges. He was motivated.
Handouts don't help, they just enable people to stay stuck. I believe Fort Bragg needs to study the efforts of Eureka, with a serious homelessness problem, to put its focus and funding on dealing with substance abuse, a top priority, before housing or vocational training is feasible for this group. The mentally ill need to be treated in an appropriate facility. I am forwarding a very informative report on what Eureka is doing now.
Mitigating the negative impacts of the homeless on our town is the responsibility of two groups, service organizations that rely on a homeless problem for their funding and salaries, and on our law enforcement. The latter needs to follow the lead of the PDs in Eureka and Santa Rosa, and begin stricter enforcement with appropriate consequences, using the laws and ordinances on civil and homeless behaviors and those actions that undermine public safety, quality of life, property values, and the local economy. Both Eureka PD, and Santa Rosa PD are exchanging tolerance for enforcement, and we need our PD to do likewise. All this can be done without violating anyone's civil rights, if proper protocol is followed.
The policies espoused by Ruffing and Owens may have helped a very few homeless people, and has attracted an increasing number of them to Fort Bragg, the majority mentally ill or addicted. They have failed, to put it simply, and we now need new leadership to replace Owens and Ruffing, and formulate a new Homeless Action Plan.
I am sending info on what Eureka is doing now, by separate email.
A READER NOTES:
Re: Rachel Maddow Show
Monday night's show began by telling about a July 1984 armored car heist by white supremacist that happened outside of Ukiah!
* * *
THE BRINKS ROBBERY the reader and Rachel Maddow refer to occurred on Highway 20 just north of Ukiah, and it was indeed the work of neo-nazis led by Robert Mathews, a lapsed Mormon who'd begun his career in rightwing extremism at age 11 when he joined the John Birch Society. One of Boonville's resident deputies, Dennis Miller, was backed up in what he thought was a traffic accident, but it was Mathews and ten or so other men who'd stopped a Brinks truck in the middle of the road by pulling a pick-up in front of it. A man with an automatic rifle then leaped on the hood of the Brinks truck, spraying gunfire at the windshield. The two Brinks workers, both young black men, surrendered the cash amounting to $3.6 million. The money first was driven to Lake Mendocino where it was loaded into another vehicle, and the robbers drove it west to
Armstrong Montgomery Woods State Park where they spent the night. The money was split among the robbers, many of whom immediately went on careless spending sprees that alerted law enforcement that a bunch of guys who had no money suddenly had lots and lots. Mathews himself shot it out with the FBI on Whidby Island, Washington, dying in the burning house he was barricaded in of smoke inhalation and gunshots.
YOUNG MARINES were instructed "Charge a gun, run from a knife." When I was young and dumb I wondered at the likelihood of a situation where that choice would be the only choice.
Now that I'm old and dumb I was still shocked by the above photo from the Charlotsville riot, which translated for me that we're not far from guns at these confrontations.The fat boy wielding the knife certainly looks like he's prepared to carve some lib, and without a gun it wouldn't be wise to challenge him. I'm sure there were people in the crowd carrying guns, and they were probably the people among the nazis, not that our side can be said not to number people eager for ultra-vi. I had friends back in the sixties, liberal jocks and recreational bar fighters, who turned out for demonstrations simply for the chance of pounding a nazi or a heckler. (A small group of uniformed nazis always showed up at all the large-scale Bay Area demos, and were carted off by the cops when they attacked peaceful demonstrators. My comrades always hustled up to where the fights were hoping to get a few punches in, but I don't think they ever did.) Looking at photos of the anti-fascists who closed down the Berkeley speech of that repulsive Yapadapalapodis or whatever his name is, they looked big, strong and agile, which is surprising in the context of NorCal Lib, as a group not known to be prone to physical combat.
LOTS OF MEN are unable to make the distinction between tough and vicious. Since the Marine Corps is the sub-theme here today, and as a kid just out of high school, I got my first mass experience with tough guys, very tough guys, at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, where I and everyone else got beat up on a daily basis for 15 straight weeks. Well, not beat up, but punched, choked, hit on the side of the head with rifles, kicked, and generally treated with unrelenting brutality. I'd grown up playing sports so the physical part of the training wasn't much different than late summer football practice, although with the Marines the practice lasted deep into every night. I did not like standing at attention while a maniac yelled in my face as he rhythmmically swung his fist into my stomach or rapped my forehead with his knuckles until a goose egg appeared. (They called that one the “knowledge knock.”) But the toughest of all the Marine tough guys were the half-dozen Marines in charge of what was called "the bad ass platoon." The bad asses were wild recruits who fought the drill instructors, fought other recruits, fought everybody. They were not amenable to military discipline, or any other kind of discipline, it seemed. They got assigned to the bad ass platoon as the Marines last try at salvaging them to fit in with the how-to-kill program. The men in charge of the bad ass platoon were so bad no ordinary bad ass kid was near a match for them, although, and this was pre-weight training, they looked like ordinary Marines. I heard that they dared the bad ass recruits to fight them, which meant they passed their work days in hand to hand combat with 18 and 19 year olds. And never lost. I have no idea how successful the bad ass platoon was at taming the wild boys, but whenever I saw them marching past they looked just like the rest of us cannon fodder.
IF YOU AT ANY TIME find yourself watching Dr. Phil I want you to get up off the chair or the couch, put your head down, and run at the TV as hard as you can. I guarantee when you come out of the coma you’re going to thank me.
— Lewis Black
COUNTY OF MENDOCINO ANNOUNCES CANNABIS CULTIVATION PROGRAM UPDATES
08-14-17 Cannabis Program Updates Final
MENDOCINO COLLEGE SUSTAINABLE TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM INVITES NEW STUDENTS, BENEFITS FROM EXPERIENCED LOCAL INSTRUCTORS
Ukiah, CA – In 2011, Mendocino College began its Sustainable Construction and Energy Technology program, offering practical, hands-on instruction for several types of students: homeowners who wanted to do their own renovations, industry professionals who wanted to expand their skills and keep up with regulations, and students who wanted to pursue the building trades. Today, the program continues to grow, with classes in Ukiah, Willits, Laytonville, and Lakeport, as well as online.
Program coordinator Jennifer Riddell credits the program’s success to the “outstanding instructors” who use a step-by-step approach to demystify everything from plumbing and electricity to reading blueprints. The college allows students to take individual courses or sign up for certificate programs, including Construction, Renewable Energy, and Residential Performance and Efficiency.
Referring to a recent survey of current and former students, Riddell said she was pleased (but not surprised) to report that “100 percent of the respondents said that they would recommend the program.”
Most students are between the ages of 18 and 45, but many retirees in their 60s and 70s also enroll. Students come from all walks of life and blend together in the classes, learning from the instructors and from each other, Riddell explained.
One of the most popular instructors is Willits native Noel Woodhouse, who has been with the Mendocino College program since its inception. After working in construction, he became an instructor. Now he teaches Woodworking, Construction Fundamentals, Residential Remodel and Repair, and Construction Documents (Understanding Blueprints). In his spare time, he coaches boys soccer, girls soccer, tennis and track.
Woodhouse teaches at Willits High School and Laytonville High School, because the Sustainable Tech classes are “dual-enrollment” classes, allowing high school students to get college credit. The classes are unusual compared to other courses taught on those campuses because the classes include both high school students and community members.
Woodhouse said, “l enjoy the mix of ages in the college classes, both the experience and focus of the older students and the energy of the high school students. The students seem to thrive with the hands-on nature of the classes.”
Projects in the classes range from small, individual student projects to partnerships with community non-profits like the North Street Collective in Willits and the Gardens Project in Ukiah. Former students have built chicken coops, shade structures, sheds and other projects; and according to Woodhouse, students in his classes seem to enjoy
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “See what I mean? They forgot all about me yesterday, probably because they were busy ooh and ahhing over that total deadbeat, Skrag. I didn't know I'd been left out until my fans started calling. "Where's Little Dog?" Thank you, fans. We know who brings in the readers around here, and it's me, me, ME! Make sure you tell them that.”
A READER WONDERS.....
"So, I looked at the Mendocino swap shop website, and it looks like a large, general business a lot like Craig's List. It has a search feature where you can go to any city in California or the US and look for things people from that city might have posted. It certainly doesn't look local. Now I'm curious, who is the Mendocino Swap Shop and where are they based? Are they a state- or nation-wide company that just uses a local name to make itself look local? Hello Mendocino Swap Shop--who are you."
FATAL HIT&RUN ON 101 NEAR LAYTONVILLE
On Sunday, 08-13-2017, at approximately 12:28 P.M., a 1965 Ford Falcon driven by Kevin Gonzalves, 46, of Concord, CA, with passenger Lorna Ballard, 53, also of Concord, was traveling southbound on US-101, north of Steel Lane at an unknown speed. A 2001 Ford Explorer Sport Trac driven by an unidentified driver was traveling northbound on US-101, north of Steel Lane, approaching the Ford Falcon. For reasons still under investigation, the Ford Explorer Sport Trac crossed over the solid double yellow lines, directly in the path of the Ford Falcon. The front of the Ford Falcon collided with the right side of the Ford Explorer Sport Trac. As a result of the collision, the passenger of the Ford Falcon, Ms. Ballard, succumbed to her injuries at the scene. The driver of the Ford Falcon, Mr. Gonsalves, sustained major injuries and was transported to Howard Memorial Hospital in Willits, then flown via air ambulance to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital. The driver of the Ford Explorer Sport Trac fled the scene on foot prior to CHP arrival.
(Similar model Ford Sport Trac)
The driver of the Ford Explorer Sport Trac is described as a hispanic male in his 30s, stocky build, 215 lbs, 5’10” tall, with short black hair, brown eyes, wearing a dark colored t-shirt and camouflage shorts. He was last seen walking northbound along US-101 immediately after the collision. Anyone with any information as to the driver’s identity or whereabouts is encouraged to call the CHP at (707) 268-2000 (24 hours a day-CHP dispatch) or (707) 923-2155 (CHP Garberville office-business hours).
Personnel from Laytonville Fire Department, Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office, Department of Transportation and Cal Fire assisted at the collision scene. This collision remains under investigation by the Garberville CHP.
* * *
UPDATE from the California Highway Patrol:
On August 15, 2017, at approximately 1200 hours, Bonifacio Ramriez Gomez surrendered to California Highway Patrol Officers at the California Highway Patrol Ukiah Office in relation to the hit and run fatal traffic collision from Sunday, August 13, 2017 in Laytonville, CA. The California Highway Patrol and the Mendocino County Distract Attorney’s Officer are working together on this investigation.
Gomez was medically cleared and booked into the Mendocino County Jail on Tuesday, August 15, 2017. The California Highway Patrol will continue to work in conjunction with the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office as this investigation unfolds. Should anyone have information regarding this collision, we urge you to contact the California Highway Patrol Garberville Office (707) 923-2155.
AV Advertiser Editor,
I am writing in regard to David Severn's article in your paper regarding water rights on the tributary to Indian Creek.
I have been Sam Prather's neighbor for 46 years and we have always gotten along amicably. Except for the court case over my water rights, (which was against Brian Padilla and Sam Prather, jointly), I have had no problems with my other neighbor, Mr. Padilla. When I lost the case, I was lucky to find well water on my own land and am very happy with my water system now.
But, I did spend many hours up in the gulch, for more than 38 years, trying to get airlocks out of the lines and get the water running on the water system referred to in David Severn's article.
We all used the springs in the winter, and the creek in the summer when the springs dried up. The Edwards (previous owners of the Padilla property), had a deeded right to the water and had already moved the creek line upstream from the original box in the creek when I moved here in 1971. They also left many old pipes and fittings up alongside the creek when they repaired the water lines up there in the gulch. I think it is unfair to blame Mr. Padilla for leaving a mess and debris up there, when a lot of it, or maybe all of it was already there when he bought his property. The two springs and spring boxes and the line in the creek were already there in 1971 when I moved here, and had been in use for many years by the Edwards and the other households on the system. Also, there was an overflow from this system that went to a watering tank for Sam's sheep from the Hulbert's line, so Sam's sheep also got water from this same system.
Warden White (Fish and Game) may have been legally correct in pulling the line out of the creek, but I think he was remiss in advising Mr. Prather to pull out the spring lines and all the water lines all the way to the holding tank, a very long distance, without checking to see if there was a deeded right or easement first.
David Severn asked me a few questions about this water system before writing his article and I told him that I did not want to be mentioned in the article as I was not part of this dispute. But since he used my name, and the article is so biased, I felt I had to put my 2 cents in.
Lynn Archambault, Philo
Black Phoebe (Photo by Ben Anderson)
GUNSHOTS AT PUDDING CREEK
(Coast Listserve exchange)
The shooting location is at the rockpit on Road 408 (Little Lake) about one and a half miles north of its Junction with 409. JDSF [Jackson Demonstration State Forest] has been attempting to keep it closed Mon-Sat as they are logging in the general area, although they can't watch it 24/6 [sic]. It's the only place open to public south of Highway 20. When the logging is done it will likely be an open range again.
Also, for the person concerned about gunshots seemingly coming from Pudding Creek: When KNYO moved from the Masonic Hall to Franklin Street four years ago, a few times at night when I was packing my things in my car in the back parking lot to go home at about 4 or 5am I heard what I thought were exchanges of gunfire from up the alley in the direction of Pudding Creek. I called the cops to report it at least once. It turned out to be train workers banging cars into each other to couple them. There are no trains in Albion. The whole time I've lived up Albion Ridge Road, gunshots and/or heavy fireworks at night are a regular occurrence. I'd say, once a month, one, two or three shots. A few weeks ago, five quick ones, like someone emptying a pistol into a speed-limit sign.
CATCH OF THE DAY, August 15, 2017
Bennett, DeWitt, Gardner
TIMOTHY BENNETT, Laytonville. Probation revocation.
KENNETH DEWITT JR., Ukiah. Parole violation, suspended license (for reckless driving).
JAMES GARDNER, Fort Bragg. DUI, Hit&run resulting in death or injury.
Golyer, Humphrey, Malotte
PAUL GOLYER, Ukiah. Probation revocation.
TRAVIS ‘THE HUMP’ HUMPRHREY, Talmage. Disorderly conduct-alcohol. (Frequent flyer.)
SUZANNE MALOTTE, Fort Bragg. Controlled substance, failure to appear.
Morris, Ocobock, Ramirez-Gomez
DENA MORRIS, Redwood Valley. Under influence. (Frequent flyer.)
CHERRAL OCOBOCK, Ukiah. Probation revocation.
BONIFACIO RAMIREZ-GOMEZ, Lawnsdale/Ukiah. Hit&run resulting in death or injury, vehiclular manslaughter.
Shaw, Silva-Hernandez, Singleton
JORDAN SHAW, Talmage. Prescription forgery, probation revocation.
OSCAR SILVA-HERNANDEZ, Ukiah. Controlled substance, probation revocation.
SHANE SINGLETON, Willits. Probation revocation.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY:
There’s a certain wish for the solidarity that grows out of hard times, and that’s perfectly understandable. When Superstorm Sandy knocked out power to our area in 2012, I had a blast going around helping neighbors, securing gasoline, being my own little electric company off a generator I managed to buy before they were all sold out.
It was the same with a lot of the men in the neighborhood, white and hispanic alike. No crime, no bitching: just DO, don’t think.
I think most women and children would be terrorized by a civil war, justly so. For a significant number of men it would be the most alive they’ve ever felt. I refer you to Sebastian Junger’s book Tribe, where he interviews people who survived the civil war in Bosnia who miss those times.
EASY CRAIG, EASY
Zen In Berkeley
Published a comment on the Anderson Valley Advertiser online this morning, pointing out that if American citizens just accepted the obvious fact that the "American experiment in freedom and democracy" is a failure, then they could all relax and be happy. Whereas I am presently in Berkeley, where expressing one's emotions is mandatory, I am expressing that I'd like to punch the Trump administration in the mouth and break its insane jaw! This legitimate emotion followed my reading the Washington Post online edition, which I signed up for taking advantage of a half price deal. This is my right now zen moment in Berkeley! Pretty goddam spot on...duh! Copy and paste this and send it to your political masters. They like feedback.
NORTH STATE CHALLENGE SERIES NEWS
by Nadine Strauss, 707-274-1662
RACE DATE: August 19, 2017
NORTH STATE MODIFIEDS RETURN TO UKIAH SPEEDWAY AUGUST 19
Ukiah, CA...... The North State Modified Series, presented by Protect the Harvest, returns to Ukiah Speedway Saturday night, August 19, for its final 2017 visit to the ¼ mile paved oval located at the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds.
Charlie Collins of Upper Lakeport was the big winner last month at Ukiah and will be attempting to do a “repeat” Saturday night. But he will have to battle 2-time NSMS champion Darrin Knight of Kelseyville who finished second to Collins here in July. Knight was victorious in the first two races this year, the first at All American Speedway in Roseville and the second at Lakeport Speedway. To date the series has produced six different winners in seven events.
Knight is the current NSMS points leader by a mere 7 points over Collins. With only four points races left, the duo will be chasing every point possible. A driver earns 75 points for a feature win with 70 points awarded to second place. The standings drop by 2 points from there, plus 2 bonus points for fastest qualifier and 2 bonus points for first place in the Lucas Oil Dash for Cash.
2016 Rookie of the Year Darrin Sullivan of Kelseyville sits third in points. Sullivan was the winner of the Memorial Day race at Redwood Acres Raceway in Eureka. Another Kelseyville native, Eric Johnson, holds fourth place, trailing Sullivan by only 7 points.
Fifth place in the standings is Sierra Furia of Lakeport. A tie for sixth is shared by Cloverdale's Dustin DeRosier and Redding driver Cody Braund. Eighth place driver Jason Philpot of Sacramento, a 4-time winner in 2016, will be gunning for his first season victory at Ukiah.
Sitting ninth in points is Kelseyville's Adrianna Strugnell. And moving up rapidly after missing several early season runs is Eric Price Jr. of Rio Linda in tenth. Price won the Sinister Diesel Summer Sizzler at All American Speedway in late June.
Other North State Modified Series 2017 feature winners are Matthew Hicks of San Diego (Madera Speedway) and Randy Houston of Medford, Oregon (Redwood Acres Raceway.)
The North State Modifieds will join Ukiah Speedway's local divisions to bring an evening of fast-paced entertainment to the race fans.
North State Modified Series is presented by: Protect the Harvest, Lucas Oil, Sinister Diesel, Ward Ranches, Penney Racing Supply, American Racer Tires, Naake Suspension, Sunoco Race Fuels, Five Star Bodies, Racer Bling, Keyser Racing Products, Scribner Plastics, DJ Safety, and the Buckhorn Bar & Grill.