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Behind The Green Curtain: True Crime Stories From Mendocino County

green-curtainby Bruce Anderson, Bruce McEwen, Ronald Rhea,
Mark Scaramella & Tim Stelloh
paperback: 320 pages
published August 4, 2012

from the Forward
Does an invisible curtain separate Mendocino County from the rest of the world, a Green Curtain that descends north of the Sonoma-Mendocino county line behind which life is more anarchic, institutions more arbitrary, the people somehow larger than life? Yes, in a time of daily astonishments, life in Mendocino County is different.

Populated by some 90,000 people spread over a vast expanse of forested mountains, isolating hills, and hidden little valleys -- all of it watered by rivers and streams once lush with annual migrations of fish -- Mendocino County is larger in area than entire states and perfect for, well, try finding someone who doesn't want to be found.

The fish and the marketable timber are mostly gone, as are the thousands of jobs that went with them and, beginning in the late 1960s, a new population of wild people and their outlaw ways of living has moved into the concealing hills and remote valleys where they sustain themselves by growing and selling marijuana.

Which is not to mention the other part of Mendocino County's unique demographic -- its re-invented people, the people hiding from their prior lives, the people simply in hiding. There are so many odd and mysterious beings tucked away in Mendocino's concealing expanse that the county can seem more like an open air witness protection program than a mere political unit called a county.

Given the peculiar mix of people making their way growing and processing intoxicants -- more wine and more dope per capita come from Mendocino County than anywhere else in the land -- not all the stories in this collection are concerned with crime. Some are merely humorous, or involve people more sinned against than sinning. Some describe startling miscarriages of justice while others simply describe incidents only tangentially criminal. And some are merely tragic.

But, we hope, considered as a whole, the reader will emerge from these accounts of real people and real events with some idea of what life is like in a place like no other, Mendocino County, the land behind the Green Curtain.

The Stories

  1. Suro
  2. A Blowtorch For Your Thoughts
  3. Getting Away With Murders
  4. Arf! Arf! Who Owns Nutmeg?
  5. Marijuana Murder On Mountain View Road
  6. When An LA Cop Meets A Westport Bush Hippy
  7. Double Deuce
  8. Insider Justice
  9. The Albuquerque Gang
  10. Can This Marriage Be Saved
  11. Was Susan Keegan Murdered?
  12. The Sad, Sad Case Of Grandma Henthorne
  13. A Meth Maker's Tale
  14. The House The Dogs Ate
  15. Loving The Kids, Willits Style
  16. A Man, A Pontiac & Three Naked Girls
  17. Blood On The Tracks
  18. Almost A Crime
  19. Meet The Seizures
  20. Dead Man At Greenwood Bridge
  21. When Wineries Kill
  22. Lady Mefferd's DUI
  23. The Kenny Rogers Saga
  24. Judge Henderson, Master Of Suspense
  25. Katlyn Long Was Murdered
  26. Fool For Love
  27. The Lights Out Gang Comes To Boonville
  28. Marvin Noble's Restless Bones
  29. Mendocino County vs. Oral Sex
  30. Hoyle & The Bulgos
  31. Log Rustling, Fort Bragg Style
  32. Slow Motion Murder
  33. Friends All The Way Back To The Old Country

Get Your Copy

  • $20 from the author (includes postage)
  • send your request (and check) to: AVA, Box 459, Boonville, CA 95415
  • also available at

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