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Mendocino County Today: Saturday, Oct 11, 2014

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A PRE-GAME assessment in the wonderfully various Elk blog by Paul McCarthy ( of tonight's homecoming game between the Mendocino Cardinals and the undefeated Anderson Valley Panthers:

“Anderson Valley fans have told MSP thy have the NCL III title ‘in the bag’ and ‘no one can stop us having an undefeated season.’

“Well, we believe Mendocino can stop them and, if they do TWO things, the Cards will walk away from the Anderson Valley homecoming game tonight (7pm) the winner.

First, they have to stop the "unstoppable" Cesar Soto - something no team has managed to do so far this year.

“Soto IS the AV offense. He scored on his second touch of the ball (48-yard TD run) on Mendocino the last time the two teams met and accounted for 34 of the 42 points the Boonville team scored.

“The second, critical, element is not having any ‘dumb’ penalties — four last week caused the loss of FOUR touchdowns. It's simply too late in the season not to know what a ‘block in the back’ is.

“Mendocino has to hit on all cylinders tonight if they expect a victory. Everyone, from the Josh Pescini kick offs to the ‘wrapping up’ of the tacklers on defense, has to be spot on.

“Potter Valley had a fabled running back a few years ago that single-handedly beat the Cards — the following game he didn't collect 50 yards for all his efforts. That has to happen tonight.

“Mendo's offense has to click too. The team registered only one TD last time they faced Anderson Valley — a Preston Salmans 79-yard kickoff return.

“It seemed AV had an answer for every offensive (and defensive) formation Mendo put on the field last game — they even recovered an onside kick on Mendo! With a little patience, and taking the ‘Soto Factor’ out of the game by limiting his ‘end arounds’ and ‘cut backs,’ the Cardinals should be able to handle the Panthers tonight.”

SOTO is a big school-quality runner. He's got speed and, for a little guy, he hits hard and very fast. No way Mendo can contain him. Additionally, sophomore quarterback Tony Pardini Jr. can throw to at least two guys who can catch. And Anderson Valley's defense is very tough. AV has four or five kids who'd be starting at Ukiah High School. Mendo doesn't have the speed and versatility to keep up with Boonville.

THIS IS BEING written five hours before kickoff so we shall see what we shall see.

WE DIDN'T KNOW until we read mendocinosportsplus that Mendocino High School, for the first time in 29 years Mendocino did not field a soccer team. The late Jon Shepherd would not be pleased. He moved mountains to get soccer established at the school, and devoted thousands of hours to it.

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UPDATE: PANTHERS WIN. Early on it seemed like Mendo was containing Soto on the rough, dry, dusty Fairgrounds field, but as the game wore on the Cardinals became less and less able to do it and Soto was routinely making 8, 12, 15 yard gainers, much of it on his own. Kuny sent in Cedric ‘The Refrigerator’ Johnson for several short yardage plays and even though it was absolutely predictable, Johnson came through with first downs (and a couple of TDs) most of the time. RB and defensive tackle Jared Johnston and QB Tony Pardini played fine games and the Panther defense contained the determined but overmatched Mendo offense throughout most of the game. Final score: Panthers 52-Cardinals 21. Panthers remain undefeated and are now odds on favorite for the League Championship.

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Just in from MendocinoSportsPlus:


Mendocino managed to "throttle down" Anderson Valley running back Cesar Soto, but the Boonville boys just had too much for the Cardinals Friday night at the Fairgrounds. Mendo gave a good account of themselves but "mental errors" plagued the team as did senseless penalties that provided Anderson Valley with good field position.

There's a chance the teams could meet again - if Mendo can win the rest of their games - they'd meet in the 2nd Annual "Redwood Bowl" November 7th, but they have to get by Point Arena for that honor and the Pirates are the only team to stay with Anderson Valley this season (losing 34-28).

Here's the scoring tonight:

MENDOCINO CARD 0 08 06 07 = 21
ANDERSONVALLEY 6 14 24 08 = 52


1:43 AV - Cedric Johnson 1 yard run. PAT pass failed
AV 6-0

11:52 Mendo - Preston Salmans 23-yrd pass to Savion Cook. Salmans PAT run
Mendo 8-6
8:00 AV - Tony Pardini 4-yard run, PAT run failed
AV 12-8
2:23 AV - Cesar Soto 12-yard run, PAT run Jared Johnston
AV 20-8

10:29 Mendo - Ryan Whitman 14 yard run. PAT failed (penalty)
AV 20-14
8:20 AV - Tony Pardini 1-yard run. PAT run Cesar Soto
AV 28-14
4:31 AV - Josh Tavares 9-yard run, PAT run Jared Johnston
AV 36-14
:55 AV - Cedric Johnson 1-yard run, PAT run by Josh Tavares
AV 44-14

7:10 AV - Cesar Soto 5-yard run, PAT run Michael Delagado
AV 52-14 Running clock started
4:09 Mendo - Trevor Sisneros 65-yard "hook & ladder" pass to Preston Salmans who shuffled ball off to Kyle Moore @ 15-yard line who scored. PAT kick Calum Hunnicutt

AV 52 MENDO 21

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WILL PARRISH was in court today (Friday). CalTrans is demanding exorbitant restitution for costs they claim Parrish caused them when he locked down to a piece of construction equipment — a “stitcher” — at the Willits Bypass project this summer. Judge Behnke said he would rule on how much restitution Parrish must make after Parrish's lawyer, Omar Figueroa and the prosecution, today in the form of Assistant DA Paul Sequiera, supply final briefs in next three weeks. The attorneys have until October 31st to do that, after which Behnke will issue the restitution figure.

JUDGE BEHNKE said he would not order Parrish to pay CHP personnel costs. He said there are various things that might be worth consideration if this was a civil suit, but it's a criminal case so he will look at only “hard costs” such as the cherry pickers rented to extract Parrish from the machinery and the cost of night-time illumination during the time Parrish was strapped to the mechanism.

THE CALTRANS ATTORNEY, whose name we don't have, teamed up with Sequiera to represent Caltrans and “The People."” Their sole witness was Ms. Susan Tappan, a CalTrans construction manager assigned to the Willits Bypass since before construction began; it was Ms. Tappan and her office who came up with the wildly inflated figures tossed around in court Friday.

AS A FIRST ORDER of business, Ms. Tappan and the CalTrans attorney revised the restitution claim yet again, right there in the middle of the courtroom, with Tappan on the witness stand. It was clear they were plucking numbers out of mid-air with zero confirmation. They determined that they had overstated the CHP costs by nearly $50,000, which brought the total of their claim down from $154,733 to a little over $100,000.

OMAR FIGUEROA cross-examined Ms. Tappan for about an hour, challenging her on the substance of the Caltrans claim. She conceded it was difficult for her to argue since she had witnessed very little of what took place during opposition demonstrations to the Bypass work, and admitted that her staff did the legwork on the claim. (CalTrans was trying to charge Parrish for a day he wasn't even on the wick drain stitcher tower (June 19, 2013), and charged him for obstructing work on the days the project was rained out (June 24th through 27th). And Caltrans is trying to charge him for the time the wick drain stitcher was sitting idle, and also an idle forklift and a pick-up truck sitting idle. They tried to charge Parrish for the cost of the CHP deploying 32 officers and a helicopter hovering overhead during his “extrication,” that charge based on the fantasy that these officers and the chopper were necessary for guarding the site from about 15 mostly elderly people who were on hand to witness the extraction.

CALTRANS' Ms. Tappan said the CHP officers were deployed to provide for Parrish's safety and the safety of workers. When defense attorney Figueroa asked who the workers were that the CHP was keeping safe at night, when no workers were on duty, she said it was the CHP.

THE CHP also arrested people who attempted to bring Parrish food and water when Parrish had very little water and no food, as Figueroa duly pointed out, so the CHP-Caltrans claim that the CHP was keeping Parrish safe is laughable. Of course, CalTrans lawyers stated that Parrish could have come down at any time of his own volition.

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LOTS OF PEOPLE are hauling in water in the Anderson Valley at upwards of $300 a load, while everyone else holds daily vigils around their wells and springs. Another year of drought and…

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TODD WALTON tells us: “…the water delivery companies in the Mendocino-Fort Bragg area deliver with trucks carrying 3500 gallons, and if you have less than a 3500-gallon storage capacity they still charge you for the entire 3500 gallons. Should we need to buy water, we want to be able to receive the full load. Second, 5,000 gallons provides us with two months of water for our minimalist needs, and those two months might carry us through the driest months of the year to a resurgence of our well.”

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WE WERE EXCHANGING views on the Giants and the Lincecum mystery, when Todd said, “I don't think Bochy trusts Lincecum in short relief situations, especially since Bochy has such good relievers for single inning work or even for facing just one or two batters. The scenarios where I think we'll see Tim pitch are those in which a starter gets lit up in the first three or four innings and we need two or three innings of relief to get us to the sixth inning and Petit is unavailable. Considering that Tim threw a no-hitter this year, and a few games later was pitching like a batting practice pitcher, his story is curious, indeed. My take, based entirely on some brief interview footage with Lincecum, is that he doesn't really hold baseball as the central focus of his reality. He's too smart, maybe. Too complicated. Or maybe he has nothing left to prove in that realm and has grown bored.

“I've done lots of reading about prodigies — musicians and writers in particular — and the thing about prodigies I find most interesting is that they all come to a point, usually with a few years after the conclusion of puberty, when their fabulous talents begin to wane. And most of the few prodigies who do manage to maintain their gifts are those who successfully teach their conscious minds to do what they have been doing largely unconsciously up to that point. Yehudi Menuhin writes about this in his autobiography, as do others, and I have known a number of musical and writing prodigies who went from producing works of genius as young teenagers to being quite ordinary people, their special talents lost.

“So maybe that's Tim. Maybe for a few years there his genius was unconscious, and time caught up with him and he has never quite been able to teach his body to do what he once did without thinking.”

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SAN FRANCISCO Friday was a major traffic jam from bay to breakers. The leader of the free world flew into town in his tax-funded plane to scoop up private money for Hillary's campaign, and the Blue Angels are sonic-booming the city, the whole show bread-and-circuses squared.

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AT LAST the four-mile stretch of Highway 128 between Boonville and Philo is being repaved. Caltrans had scraped and pitted the roadbed then, for mysterious reasons known only to them, left it that way for nearly two years. And left us with cracked windshields and worn down tires.

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JENDI COURSEY, a Ukiah-based public relations person, has been hired by the Anderson Valley Health Center "to help them share their news with the community. I would like to keep you informed of newsworthy activities, starting with the hiring of a new CEO and family doctor.

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Boonville, CA – Long known for its commitment to the community and its residents, Anderson Valley Health Center (AVHC) has overcome a challenging transition and is on its way to a bright future.

When long-time Executive Director Judith Dolan retired in 2011, AVHC faced a tumultuous time in health care without its trusted leader. AVHC began navigating the complicated process of becoming a federally qualified health center to receive federal funding. And like other health centers, AVHC also had to address changes related to federal health care legislation (i.e., the Affordable Care Act / Covered California).

Thanks to dedicated employees and help from neighboring federally qualified health centers, AVHC has hired a new CEO and a new doctor, both of whom are full of energy and enthusiasm to work with existing staff toward a sustainable future.

New Chief Executive Officer, Shannon Spiller, brings a clinical background and outreach experience to her administrative role. As a mid-level medical provider Spiller regularly cared for patients at AVHC. She also served as AVHC Outreach Services Director, working closely with the Anderson Valley Unified School District to plan and implement the Carol White Physical Education Grant Program. This program supports the development of life-long healthy eating and activity habits among Anderson Valley students and their families. The program was so successful — leading to a remarkable six percent reduction in the body mass index of participants during the first year of implementation — that AVHC received special recognition for developing a “Best Practice.”

Spiller also implemented Teen Clinic services, enabling teens to communicate with health care providers via text message and access services after school. She provided age-appropriate reproductive education to various grades at the elementary school and high school, and is pleased to report there have been no unplanned pregnancies for the 2014 school year.

Before joining the AVHC staff, Spiller worked in health care administration as the Assistant Medical Director for the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe Health Service in Cass Lake, Minnesota. There, she developed and expanded health care services to Native Americans, implementing and managing the Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Project: a community-based educational program teaching early lifestyle modification and interventions to prevent and reverse heart disease.

She also collaborated with other local health programs to provide culturally sensitive health and family services. She managed and supervised the scheduling of clinicians to satellite clinics, as well as providing medical supervision to the county juvenile center.

“We are taking things one step at a time. We have a great board [of directors] and an excellent staff who love this community and are committed to caring for it,” she said. “This position offers the challenge and opportunity I’m looking for in my career, and I’m confident we can take care of whatever comes our way.”

Apfel, McGhan, Spiller
Apfel, McGhan, Spiller

Joining Spiller as a new member of the AVHC team is Logan McGhan, MD, the new board-certified family practice doctor. Dr. McGhan finished his residency earlier this year and began working at AVHC in late August. He says he cannot believe what a good fit AVHC is for him and how comfortable living in Anderson Valley is for his family.

“It’s almost spooky how perfect this feels. My wife is from Michoacán, Mexico. When we came to Boonville, we couldn’t believe how many people were from that same region,” he said. Dr. McGhan and his wife, Rocio, were looking for a small town in Northern California where they could raise a family. When Dr. McGhan came to Mendocino County, he did not know about the position at AVHC. Instead, he came to interview for positions in Willits and Ukiah. It was only after he arrived that someone mentioned the AVHC opportunity.

“I cold called the health center drove over [to Boonville] that same day. I knew it was a fit as soon as I got here,” he said.

As a new doctor, Dr. McGhan is grateful for the mentorship of long-time AVHC doctor Mark Apfel, MD. Dr. McGhan said he understands that Dr. Apfel may want to retire some day, but hopes for a good five years together, first. “This will be a warm hand off,” he said. “I wouldn’t have come if I thought Dr. Apfel were going to retire anytime soon.”

Dr. Apfel shared his enthusiasm at finding someone to help him care for the people in the community he loves. “I’m not ready to retire yet, but I’m glad to know the community will be in good hands when I do.” Dr. Apfel has been practicing medicine in the Anderson Valley for more than 38 years, long enough to care for patients, their children, their grandchildren, and sometimes their great-grandchildren. His experience and dedication have allowed AVHC to care for thousands of people who would otherwise have had to travel long distances or go without care.

Dr. McGhan’s route to medicine was fairly direct. He always enjoyed math and science in school, and when he considered other professions, he knew medicine would be a better choice. “I didn’t want to be in sales. I wasn’t interested in business. Law and politics seemed similar and not for me. So, I went for medicine.”

As he looks back, he thinks he probably started considering medicine as a profession as early as age 12 when he visited a leper colony in the Amazon rain forest. “I was still young enough that I just started playing with the local kids. I felt no different from them. And I remember thinking, as I left to go home with my family, that the next time I saw people in such need, I wanted to be able to help them — not just visit and take pictures.”

Now he helps people every day. Dr. McGhan lives just minutes from AVHC with his wife and son, Carmelo. They live off the grid and enjoy the totally unplugged lifestyle. When he’s not at work, Dr. McGhan spends time with his family and pursues his other passions: music and fishing. He is a self-taught guitar player and pianist, and he loves to play when he gets the chance. He also looks forward to abalone diving and sea fishing from a kayak.

Anderson Valley Health Center is a federally qualified health center dedicated to serving the people of the Anderson Valley. They provide medical, dental, and behavioral health services and are currently accepting new patients.

(AVHC Press Release)

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ON SUNDAY October 5, 2014 at 12:51 A.M., Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies were dispatched to the Garcia River Casino in Point Arena, California regarding a fight between five to six subjects. Upon arrival Deputies contacted one adult male victim who had sustained major trauma to his head and upper body. Due to his injuries the adult male was transported by ambulance to a nearby hospital for medical treatment. The victim reported he had been at a birthday party next to the Garcia River when he was attacked by four adult male subjects who had fled prior to law enforcement's arrival. The victim stated he knew one of the adult males by the name “Marco,” but had no idea who the other attackers were.

Cobarrubia, Escareno
Cobarrubia, Escareno

After the investigation regarding this incident was concluded Marcos Escareno, 22, of Manchester, and Richie Cobarrubia, 22, of Point Arena were contacted and placed under arrest for Battery with serious bodily injury and assault with a deadly weapon. Escareno and Cobarrubia were then transported to the Mendocino County Jail where they are being held for the listed violations in lieu of $30,000 bail.

(Sheriff’s Press Release)

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FOR NEWS MEDIA who covered the 2007 murder prosecution (that ultimately resulted in a 2010 voluntary manslaughter conviction) of Marcos Cattarino Escareno, and who then again may have covered the litigation wherein DA Dave Eyster was determined correct that the defendant's prior commitment to the Youth Authority versus state prison was unlawful (proceedings that took place from December 2013 through March 2014), you may be interested in the latest turn of events.

Today, Friday, October 10, 2014, defendant Marcos Cattarino Escareno, now age 22, was arraigned on a felony complaint charging him the assault with force likely to cause great bodily injury, a special allegation alleging that he inflicted great bodily injury, a special allegation alleging that he acted in concert with others in committing a hate crime, and a Strike allegation alleging his prior violent conviction. The Public Defender was appointed to represent the defendant. Not guilty pleas and denials of special allegations were entered on his behalf. A preliminary hearing is now scheduled for October 27, 2014 at 9:30am in Fort Bragg. A readiness conference was also scheduled for October 20, 2014 at 9:30am also in Fort Bragg.

(Press Advisory, Mike Geniella, Mendocino County DA’s media contact)

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Original Press Release: On October 8, 2014 at 11:41 P.M., inmates alerted staff to an attempted suicide at the Mendocino County Adult Detention Facility. Upon arrival, staff found 36-year-old Shane Murphy of Cleone, California unconscious on the floor of his cell. His two cellmates were attempting to perform cardio pulmonary resuscitation. Correctional staff took over life-saving measures and an ambulance was summoned. When the ambulance arrived, medical personnel evaluated Murphy and determined that he was deceased. The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office and the District Attorney's Office will conduct a thorough death investigation pursuant to standard policy and procedure.

Update: On October 10, 2014 a forensic autopsy was conducted on Shane Murphy to help determine his cause of death. The classification of Murphy’s death is pending the results of BA/Toxicology analysis, which is expected to take 4-6 weeks before results are returned to the Sheriff's Office Coroner's Division.

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ON THURSDAY October 9 2014 at 11:05 AM, Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies were called to the area of the Grace Hudson School for a report of a two-year old child who had been walking alone on Jefferson Street in Ukiah. Deputies arrived, with the assistance of Mendocino County Children's Services workers and located the child's residence nearby on Adams Street. The child was found to have been left in the care of his father, Armando Alvarez, 24, of Ukiah, who allegedly had been sleeping when the child disappeared from the residence. After an investigation by Deputies and Children's Services, Armando Alvarez was arrested for Felony Child Endangerment and booked in the Mendocino County Jail to be held in lieu of $25,000 bail. The child, as well as an additional small child, was released to their mother by Children's Services.

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On Friday, October 3rd at about 6:40 PM Ukiah Police responded to Safeway, at 653 South State Street, for a male subject wearing a cowboy hat and yelling at customers. Officers encountered 45 year old Alan Holliday on the east side of store, and found him to be too intoxicated to care for himself. As Officers attempted to take Holliday into custody he physically resisted, and raised his fists and took a fighting stance. After a struggle officers were able to get Holliday into custody and he was charged with public intoxication and resisting arrest.

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On Saturday, October 4th at about 8:00 PM a Ukiah Police Officer was fueling his vehicle in the 1100 block of South State Street, and saw 20 year old Andres Victor Fuentes park his vehicle behind the police vehicle in the fueling bay. Fuentes had a suspended driver’s license and was on probation and prohibited from driving after drinking and without a license. As Fuentes exited his vehicle the officer saw Fuentes displayed symptoms of having consumed alcohol, and an opened beer was observed in the console of Fuentes’ vehicle. Fuentes was found too intoxicated to drive and was arrested for DUI, driving with a suspended driver’s license, and violating probation.

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On Sunday, October 5th at about 8:55 AM Ukiah Police responded to a call of domestic violence in the 200 block of East Gobbi Street. Officers determined the victim and 32 year old Craig Leonard Brady had argued late the night prior, and that Brady punched the victim numerous times in the face, head, and upper body. Brady had been drinking, and the attack caused visible injuries to the victim. Early the following the morning the victim awoke to find Brady still drinking and he again punched the victim in the face. At about 10:10 AM officers located Brady in the 700 block of Apple Avenue, found him intoxicated and arrested him for domestic violence. An emergency protective order was obtained prohibiting Brady from contacting the victim.

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McKenzie, Flora
McKenzie, Flora

On Sunday, October 5th at about 9:05 PM Ukiah Police were patrolling in the 200 block of Observatory Avenue and observed a group congregating in a parking lot. The officers saw one of the subjects try to hide a duffle bag behind an electrical box, and contacted two of the subjects identified as 31 year old Sharreen Marie Flora and 42 year old Dwayne Lee McKenzie. Both subjects displayed symptoms of having used drugs recently, and Flora was found to be on search probation for theft. Officers located a methamphetamine smoking pipe and other drug paraphernalia and over 1 gram of methamphetamine inside the bag that McKenzie had tried to hide from the officers. McKenzie was arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance and for possessing methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. Flora was arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance and violating probation.

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On Monday, October 6th at about 12:35 PM Ukiah Police responded to a disturbance in the trailer park at 778 South State Street. Several of the residents reported they suspected 31 year old Benjamin Franklin Hoff of vandalizing vehicles in the park, and of harassing a female resident. Hoff reportedly had just left the area on a bicycle and the residents agreed to report further incidents. Approximately 15 minutes later the officer was summoned to the 300 block of Observatory Avenue where Hoff was suspected continuing to harass the female and of vandalizing her vehicle. The arriving officer was directed by several people to Hoff, who was on probation for stalking and was standing next to his bicycle. Hoff immediately fled on his bicycle heading east on Observatory Avenue and refused to yield to the officer’s vehicle lighting and siren. When Hoff reached the apartment complex at 137 Observatory Avenue he hopped off the bicycle and ran south into the complex with the officer in foot pursuit. The officer caught up to Hoff as he was trying to jump a fence, and he was taken into custody. Hoff had two knives secured to his bicycle in violation of is probation terms, which prohibited from possessing weapons. Hoff as arrested for resisting arrest and violating probation.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, October 10, 2014

Alvarez, Atkinson, Blais, Brown, Cain
Alvarez, Atkinson, Blais, Brown, Cain

ARMANDO ALVAREZ, Ukiah. Child endangerment, probation revocation.

MAIA ATKINSON, Calpella. Child endangerment.


JAMES BROWN, Redwood Valley. Drunk in public, possession of drug paraphernalia, probation revocation.


Coplano, Cruz, Davidson, Hyer
Coplano, Cruz, Davidson, Hyer

ALAN COPLANO, Petaluma/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

JOSE CRUZ, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

JOY DAVIDSON, Fort Bragg. Under influence of controlled substance.

PATRICIA HYER, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

Knapp, McGee, Miller, Paul, Ramirez
Knapp, McGee, Miller, Paul, Ramirez

VERNON KNAPP SR., Willits. Drunk in public, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

MICHAEL MCGEE, Fort Bragg. DUI, driving without valid license, probation revocation.

SHAWN MILLER, Ukiah. Parole/probation violation.

ANTHONY PAUL, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public.

ALEXANDER RAMIREZ, Fort Bragg. Probation violation.

Rodriguez, Sims, Williams, Wright
Rodriguez, Sims, Williams, Wright

MANUEL RODRIGUEZ, Covelo. Prohibited person with firearm, probation revocation.

TROY SIMS, Stockton/Ukiah. Pot transportation, sales, furnishing, driving without valid license, failure to appear.

ARLEEN WILLIAMS, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

JEFFREY WRIGHT, Fort Bragg. Refusal to follow traffic officer order, business interference.

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Nobel Peace Prize winner


I'm sure you've heard that the heroic Pakistani girl, Malala, won the Nobel Peace Prize today. A perfect choice.

She shares the prize with an Indian human rights campaigner, Kailash Satyrthi, who is far less known in the West. His organization has freed thousands of children from forced labor.

I remembered that he is profiled in the lead story of the first episode of "The New Heroes," a series produced by Oregon Public Broadcasting that ran on PBS in 2005. My close friend and colleague David Davis was the EP. Narrated by Robert Redford.

The story about Kailash Satyrthi begins at 3:04 into the program with a daring raid on a farm labor camp in India. Shot by talented producer Carl Byker and his ace cameraman Mitch Wilson.

I recommend it highly.

Best, Steve Talbot



SOUND TRACKS: Music Without Borders


The I Files on YouTube

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There's a certain Slant of light,

Winter Afternoons …

That oppresses, like the Heft

Of Cathedral Tunes …


Heavenly Hurt, it gives us …

We can find no scar,

But internal difference …

Where the Meanings, are …


None may teach it … Any …

'Tis the seal Despair …

An imperial affliction

Sent us of the Air …


When it comes, the Landscape listens …

Shadows … hold their breath …

When it goes, 'tis like the Distance

On the look of Death …

— Emily Dickenson

* * *


When I posted a comment about the National Organization for Women on Facebook, some criticism of the organization from black women began to appear in the replies. Such criticism has been muffled by the media, owned by wealthy white men, who choose feminist leaders just as they choose black leaders, Hispanic, and Asian American leaders. Activist Jolynn Brooks wrote: "Why doesn’t anyone speak to that fact that American feminists in large part are not egalitarian but too often anti-male as well as anti-black? I found this fact to be evident in the membership of the National Organization for Women. I was in attendance when they voted down the candidacy of a black woman, Efia Nwangaza, for a leadership position with the thinnest of reasons. These bourgeois feminists are not revolutionary in their political orientation but rather totalitarian. They don’t want to replace the present political system with one that is just, principled, or guided by the dictates of each according to her/his ability; each according to her/his need. Instead, they are bald and bold in their need to replace white male patriarchy with a female version complete with its own bigotry and white-skin."

Ray Rice’s knocking his spouse unconscious has led to a festival of hypocrisy among the chattering classes. Dr. Louis Moore, an assistant professor in the history department at Grand Valley State University, commented about how the offenses of a few black men are projected upon the many. “Part of the privilege of whiteness, is that Whites are allowed to be individuals,” said Moore. “So when Tony Stewart killed that man on the racetrack, it was an indictment on Tony Stewart, not White men. When Wes Welker got suspended for drugs, we did not have a national conversation about Whites’ use of drugs even though we know that Whites use more drugs than Blacks.” (Ishmael Reed)

* * *


Teenage had a race for the night time

Spent my cash on every high I could find

Wasted time in every school in L.A.

Getting loose, I didn't care what the kids say

We're white punks on dope

Mom & Dad moved to Hollywood

Hang myself when I get enough rope

Can't clean up, though I know I should

White punks on dope

White punks on dope

Other dudes are living in the ghetto

But born in Pacific Heights don't seem much betto

We're white punks on dope

Mom & Dad live in Hollywood

Hang myself when I get enough rope

I can't clean up, though I know I should

White punks on dope

White punks on dope

I go crazy 'cause my folks are so fucking rich

Have to score when I get that rich white punk itch

Sounds real classy, living in a chateau

So lonely, all the other kids will never know

We're white punks on dope

Mom & Dad live in Hollywood

Hang myself when I get enough rope

Can't clean up, though I know I should

White punks on dope

White punks on dope

(Evans/Spooner/Steen, The Tubes)

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* * *


More Justice Wanted

by Ralph Nader

Secret laws, secret courts, secret evidence, secret dragnet snooping, too big to fail, too big to jail… the Department of Justice (DOJ) has not been fully living up to its name.

As Attorney General Eric Holder prepares to step down, it is time to look forward and ask what his replacement must bring to the table for our country. The United States has been increasingly dominated by law-dodging, self-serving big corporations. Wall Street continues its corporate crime wave; strip-mining the economy whilst providing huge bonuses to its executives. The Executive Branch has run amok with acts of imperial military aggression, unlawful imprisonment and many civilian fatalities with no legal consequences.

President Obama should strongly consider the areas that Mr. Holder’s Justice Department has failed to adequately act upon when choosing his successor. The new attorney general will have the responsibility to establish trust and confidence with the American people that their Department of Justice is doing its job sufficiently.

Here is a brief list of areas where AG Holder’s Justice Department has been inadequate in enforcement.

Corporate criminals have unrepentantly looted and drained trillions of dollars from American workers and investors, wiping out their savings and pensions. No Wall Street executives were prosecuted for their part in the economic collapse in 2008-2009.

One important step the DOJ could take is establishing a comprehensive database on corporate crime. Imagine if the Department of Education had no measures for how well our children learn or if the U.S. Department of Agriculture had no idea of how much wheat or corn our farmers grew? This is the how the DOJ operates in its handling of corporate crime today.

For street crime, the FBI oversees the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, which tracks data from over 18,000 local and state law enforcement agencies. The DOJ should launch a similar data compiling program for corporate crime. Such a database would catalog antitrust and price-fixing, environmental crimes, financial crimes, overseas bribery, health care fraud, trade violations, labor and employment-related violations, consumer fraud and damage to consumer health and safety, and corporate tax fraud onshore and offshore.

In order to enforce the law, the authorities at the DOJ must have tools in place to measure the incidence and severity of corporate crime, to determine whether its efforts against them are successful or not, and the many ways they might be improved. Establishing such a database — called for by corporate reformers for many years — could be an excellent first step for the incoming attorney general.

Another area in which Attorney General Holder has failed is his inaction on the out-of-control national security state. Holder signed off on the National Security Agency’s legal authority to sweep up the phone and email records of millions of Americans not charged or suspected of any crime. This mass dragnet snooping is a clear violation of the Constitution. Whereas Attorney General Holder failed to go after the Wall Street criminals, he disturbingly did not hold back in prosecuting whistleblowers of security state wrongdoing and their reporters.

It would greatly benefit the new attorney general to take drastic steps in protecting the privacy rights of law-abiding Americans by establishing an open legal process on how and why data is collected.

Attorney General Eric Holder has maintained that there is sufficient due process entirely inside the White House to engage in military aggression overseas without Congressional oversight or judicial review. The result is a continuation of the Bush-era secretive imperial presidency that bypasses the Constitution’s separation of powers and checks and balances in unending wars of choice.

Using drone strikes, the White House has usurped the authority to target anyone suspected of terrorist ties based on secret information, whether or not the targeted person is actually plotting an attack against the United States, and whether or not innocent family members or bystanders are nearby. The next attorney general should apply the Constitution and international law to rein in these dictatorial actions by the out-of-control White House.

The next attorney general must, above all else, respect the Constitution and the rule of law. Our country cannot afford and does not deserve an attorney general who puts political loyalty above the sworn obligation to respect and defend civil liberties, civil rights, challenge the abuses of executive power and corporate crime.

(Ralph Nader’s latest book is: Unstoppable: the Emerging Left-Right Alliance to Dismantle the Corporate State.)

* * *


A classic David and Goliath battle in California politics 

by Dan Bacher

The campaign for and against Proposition 1, the $7.5 billion water bond on the November 4 ballot, has emerged as the classic David and Goliath battle of this election season in California.

The Governor, Republican and Democratic Party establishment, corporate agribusiness interests, construction unions, corporate "environmental" NGOs, prominent billionaires and big water agencies are backing the Yes on Prop. 1 campaign. In contrast, a grassroots coalition of fishing groups, environmentalists, consumer organizations, two Indian Tribes, family farmers and Delta water agencies is enlisted in the battle to defeat Proposition 1.

The contrast between the Yes and No on 1 campaigns is illustrated by the respective money each campaign has raised. Governor Jerry Brown’s Yes on Proposition 1 and 2 campaign has raised $6,621,946 and has spent $817,276, while the Vote NO on Prop. 1 campaign has raised a total of $71,000 and has spent $41,036 as of October 6, 2014, according to Ballotpedia:,_Water_Bond_(2014)

The water bond proponents are divided up in two committees. The Yes on Props 1 and 2 committee, "A Bipartisan Coalition of Business, Labor, Republicans, Democrats and Governor," has raised $4,540,580 and has spent $759,649. The second committee, the California Business Political Action Committee, sponsored by the California Chamber of Commerce, has raised $62,500 and has spent $57,627.

The top donor in the Yes on Prop. 1 campaign is Sean Parker, an entrepreneur and venture capitalist who cofounded the file-sharing computer service Napster and served as the first president of the social networking website Facebook. He also cofounded Plaxo, Causes, and Airtime. As of September, 2014, Parker's net worth was estimated to be $3.1 billion, according to Wiikipedia. He has contributed $1 million to the Yes campaign to date.

Also noteworthy is that four members of the family that owns the Gap Stores - Doris F. Fisher, John J. Fisher, Robert J. Fisher, and William S. Fisher - each contributed $245,000 to the campaign.

Corporate agribusiness donates $850,000 to Yes on Prop. 1

Corporate agribusiness interests have donated a total of $850,000 to the Yes on Prop. 1 campaign. Stewart Resnick, the Beverly Hills agribusiness tycoon, owner of Paramount Farms and largest orchard fruit grower in the world, contributed $150,000. The California Farm Bureau Federation contributed $250,000, the Western Growers Service Association donated $250,000 and the California Cotton Alliance contributed $200,000 to the Yes on Prop. 1 campaign.

Resnick and his wife, Lynda, have been instrumental in promoting campaigns to eviscerate Endangered Species Act protections for Central Valley Chinook salmon and Delta smelt populations and to build the fish-killing peripheral tunnels - and have made millions off resellling environmental water to the public. Prop. 1 opponents recently held a "mock reception" outside the Resnick mansion in Beverly Hills to expose the Resnicks, who stand to benefit from the two dams funded by the latest state water bond. (

Opponents of Proposition 1 criticized Governor Jerry Brown and the backers of Prop. 1 for taking $850,000 in contributions to date from big agribusiness donors to pass public funding for water transfers to enrich them - and to enable the biggest dam-building program in California history.

Adam Scow from Food and Water Watch said, “Corporate agribusiness giants, including Stewart Resnick, are spending big to pass Proposition 1, a bloated $7.5 billion bond measure that would funnel more water to big agribusinesses at taxpayer expense. Prop 1 is a measure to quench their greed—it will not solve California’s water problems."

He also noted that the Western Growers Association, the California Farm Bureau Federation, and the California Cotton Alliance have contributed a total of $700,000 to the Prop. 1 campaign to ensure the construction of Sites Reservoir on the west side of the Sacramento Valley and Temperance Flat Dam on the San Joaquin River.

“Proposition 1 burdens taxpayers with debt to build projects for billion-dollar farming conglomerates that make up groups like Western Growers and the California Cotton Alliance," said Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla of Restore the Delta, who is the No on Prop. 1 field director.

"It includes the largest appropriation for new dams in California’s history that will benefit these corporate farmers who refuse to fund the dam projects themselves. Prop 1 will drive California and its taxpayers even further into debt for illusory and largely bogus ‘environmental benefits’. Prop. 1 shifts the financial burden from those who directly benefit from building new dams to the taxpayers," said Barrigan-Parrilla.

These groups are making large contributions as an investment to make sure that their pet projects are passed through the California Water Commission, according to Prop. 1 opponents.

“Prop. 1 will not ‘save water’ as Gov. Brown claims in ads paid for by these special interests. It’s a boondoggle to enrich his big ag contributors,” said Barrigan-Parrilla.

The following are the donors who contributed $150,000 or more to the Yes on Prop. 1 and 2 campaign as of October 6, 2014:

  • Sean Parker $1,000,000
  • California Alliance for Jobs - Rebuild California Committee $500,000
  • Health Net $445,600
  • Laborers Pacific Southwest Regional Organizing Coalition PAC $400,000
  • California American Council of Engineering Companies $250,000
  • California Farm Bureau Federation $250,000
  • California Association of Hospitals and Health Systems $250,000
  • Northern California Carpenters Regional Council Issues PAC $250,000
  • Reed Hastings $250,000
  • SW Regional Council Of Carpenters $250,000
  • Western Growers Service Corporation $250,000
  • Doris F. Fisher $245,000
  • John J. Fisher $245,000
  • Robert J. Fisher $245,000
  • William S. Fisher $245,000
  • California Cotton Alliance $200,000
  • Northern California District Council Of Laborers Issues PAC $200,000
  • Stewart A. Resnick $150,000
  • The State Building And Construction Trades Council of CA $150,000

Organizations backing Proposition 1 include the following:

  • California Democratic Party
  • California Republican Party
  • California Farm Bureau Federation
  • Trout Unlimited
  • California Trout
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Audubon California
  • California Chamber of Commerce
  • Delta Counties Coalition
  • Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Ducks Unlimited
  • American Rivers
  • Silicon Valley Leadership Group
  • Natural Resources Defense Council
  • California League of Conservation Voters
  • Northern California Water Association
  • State Building and Construction Trades Council of California
  • Association of California Water Agencies
  • Western Growers
  • League of California Cities
  • California State Association of Counties
  • California Citrus Mutual
  • Water districts and boards:
  • Fresno Irrigation District
  • Friant Water Authority
  • Long Beach Board of Water Commissioners
  • Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
  • San Diego Water Authority
  • No on Prop. 1: Water bond water enriches speculators

The campaign against the measure is led by Vote NO on Proposition 1, a grassroots coalition of fishermen, environmental groups, consumer organizations, two Indian Tribes, family farmers and Delta water agencies.

Bill Jennings, Executive Director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, summed up why it is so important for people concerned about the future of salmon, the Delta and California to vote against the water bond: "Prop. 1 is a poster-child of why California is in a water crisis: it enriches water speculators but accomplishes little in addressing the drought, solving California's long-term water needs, reducing reliance on The Delta, or protecting our rivers and fisheries."

The following are the donors who contributed $2,500 or more to the No on 1 campaign as of October 6, 2014:

  • Dante Nomellini $12,500
  • Jack Klein Partnership $7,500
  • Conrad Silva Farms $5,000
  • Del Carlo Farms, Inc. $5,000
  • Thomas Zuckerman $5,000
  • Ferguson Farms, Inc. $2,500
  • George Perry & Sons, Inc. $2,500
  • Lory & Victoria Mussi $2,500
  • R&M Ranch $2,500
  • Rudy and Toni Mussi $2,500
  • San Joaquin Delta Farms, Inc. $2,500
  • V and A Lagorio $2,500

Opponents of Prop. 1 include the following:

  • AFSCME District Council
  • Ballona Institute
  • Butte Environmental Council
  • California Sportfishing Protection Alliance
  • California Striped Bass Association
  • California Water Impact Network
  • Coast Action Group
  • Center for Biological Diversity
  • Central Delta Water Agency
  • Concerned Citizens Coalition of Stockton
  • Environmental Protection Information Center (EPIC)
  • Environmental Water Caucus
  • Factory Farm Awareness Coalition
  • Friends Committee on Legislation of California
  • Friends of the Eel River
  • Friends of the River
  • Food and Water Watch
  • Foothill Conservancy
  • Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations
  • Potrero Hill Democratic Club
  • Pulga Rancheria Concow Maidu Indians
  • Restore the Delta
  • Sacramento River Preservation Trust
  • San Francisco Baykeeper
  • San Francisco Crab Boat Association
  • Save the American River Association
  • Small Boat Commercial Salmon Fishermen’s Association
  • Sherman Island Duck Hunters Association
  • Sonoma County Conservation Action
  • South Delta Water Agency
  • Southern California Watershed Alliance
  • Tar Sands Action
  • Wetlands Defense Fund
  • Wild Heritage Planners
  • Winnemem Wintu Tribe


  1. Jeff Costello October 11, 2014

    Re the Lincecum comments, prodigies and peripherally, self-indulgence, allow me to quote myself: The grass grows greener on celebrities. We love to put them on pedestals and then knock them off. And isn’t 30 years of age a bit past the time when someone can still be a child prodigy? Speaking of prodigious, the “catch of the day” rogues’ gallery of Mendo county seems to be growing at a considerable pace. Is this a local phenomenon or dire indication that we live in “interesting” times?

  2. Rick Weddle October 11, 2014

    re: Peace Prize, Mr. Talbot…
    I have daughters, granddaughters, greatgranddaughters and I’m deeply inspired by the young girl who stood up for Women’s Rights, got shot for her activism, then got right back on the Activist horse. Yes, all you young Humans!
    Thanks for this piece of Getting it Right journalism, so damned rare at this time!
    And…I’ve a question:
    Is this the same Steve Talbot (‘Richmond’ Steve Talbot) who, in the ’70’s or early ’80’s wrote a little ditty that went, “…I went to see my guru just the other day…she said, ‘Boogie!'”? The Caspar Flats Jugband took that one for a spin or two, and I’d like to thank Richmond Steve.

  3. Lazarus October 11, 2014

    Baseball is a cumulative sport, everyone from the main office to the Batboys and Ground Keepers has to GET IT, to get it done.
    Tim Lincecum has 2 Cy Young’s, two WS rings and 2 NO HITTERS…..just to start.
    He’s is and has always been a good Giant, straight up… no matter the situation he or the team has found themselves in. Go Giants!

  4. Mntnbeev October 14, 2014

    Gawd… The description above of lesbian totalitarianism is excellent. Reminds me of the lesbians of Elk! Perfect description. Why do lesbians imitate the worst possible characteristics of men to pretend to be better women?

  5. Mntnbeev October 14, 2014

    Hmmm…. delightful. Emily Dickinson juxtaposed with The Tubes!

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