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Mendocino County Today: February 11, 2012

COMMET, the County of Mendocino Marijuana Eradication Team  raided 2310 Road K in Redwood Valley on Thursday where they found a bonanza load of 144 pounds of marijuana drying in a detached garage, 89 pounds of processed bud packaged for sale, 17 pounds of untrimmed marijuana, scales, packaging material, records, less than a gram of MDMA and $164,456 in cash. The cash will undoubtedly wind up with local law enforcement in the County’s cop budget. The raiders also found Karen Spencer, Dakota Nesbitt, James Shook, Bogdan Cristea, Jordan Williams, and Mia Miller, all of whom were arrested except for Ms. Miller. A separate report is being forwarded to the DA on her, but it seems she was merely visiting Villa Dopa when COMMET came hollering through the door. Spencer, Newbitt, Shook, Cristea and Williams were arrested and booked into the Mendocino County Jail. Megan Champion was determined to be the person renting the property. Additional arrests are expected, the Sheriff’s Office said.

ALSO ON THURSDAY, as home invasion season roars along on the Northcoast, the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office received an early morning 911 call from a male victim reporting a home invasion robbery that had just occurred at his residence in the 3000 block of Thomas Road, Salmon Creek, which is a few miles north of Garberville. The home at that address is behind a locked gate and a mile and a half up a dirt road. Deputies were told by the two victims, a husband and wife, that at about 4:30am, they were awakened by their dog’s agitated barking. Four men were soon inside the house, all of them clad in combinations of ski masks and hoods, and each wearing latex gloves. As they entered the home, the intruders were yelling, “It’s the police, get up!” One of the suspects removed the male victim from the bed and forced him to the floor. This man ‘zip-tied’ the male victim’s hands behind his back and began demanding to know where the marijuana and money was located. The male victim led the suspects to approximately 30 pounds of dried marijuana. The bandits continued to demand money from the victim, who led them to a small security safe. When the victim said he could not remember the combination to the safe, he was struck in the face, probably with a fist, causing a moderate injury near his eye. Ultimately, the safe was opened but no cash was found in it. During the robbery, the invaders threatened to kill the victims and/or burn down their house. The suspects were estimated to have been in the home for about an hour, during which time they took an estimated $3,000 to $4,000 in cash. Prior to leaving the residence, the robbers used duct tape to bind both victims, then bound both back to back in a seated position on the floor. The robbers finally left in the victim’s newly purchased Subaru and drove in it back down the hill to the locked gate. The crooks were not able to get the stolen vehicle through the gate and left it abandoned in the roadway. The male victim was able to unbind himself within minutes of the suspects leaving his home and called 911 for assistance. There is no description of the suspects or description of a vehicle that may have been used to travel to the victim’s residence. Anyone with any information regarding this robbery is asked to call the HumCo Sheriff’s Department at (707-445-7251).

ACCORDING TO A STUDY conducted by Dalhousie University in Halifax, which would be Canada for those of you hazy on your geography, people who use marijuana before driving are nearly twice as likely to cause a car crash as those not under the influence of the drug. 49,000 people involved in road accidents were interviewed in nine studies; pot's culpability was confirmed by blood tests or confession. Researchers found drivers who had used marijuana within three hours of beginning to drive had nearly double the risk of causing a collision, especially fatal collisions.

THE UKIAH Planning Commission seems to have finally heard enough about WalMart’s proposed expansion after the fourth meeting on the subject. The benefits alleged by a WalMart attorney included increased tax revenue to Ukiah, improved access and landscaping, by which in Ukiah is meant dying lawn and turd-shaped bushes characteristic of the town’s commercial and public buildings. Each benefit claimed by WalMart has been systematically refuted by its many Mendo critics. WalMart wants to add 47,463-square-feet to its current store west of downtown along Highway 101.

WHEN GRAPES are on slopes that are steep

Official Mendo’s officially asleep

When they collapse

Then maybe, perhaps…?

But no — they’re all full of bleep


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