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Mendocino County Today: Thursday, April 12, 2018

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JUST OVER HALF AN INCH OF RAIN fell on Boonville during Wednesday’s storm with wind gusts up to about 20mph. There were no reports of power outages. Overnight temps dropped to near 40 degrees. More rain showers expected Thursday and again on Sunday and Monday and yet again late next Wednesday into Thursday.

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(Click to enlarge)

(Photo by Judy Valadao)

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The A.V. Library will be open on Saturday April 21 from 10-4 and we will be having a $4 a bag book sale. Bring your own bag and fill it with some great reading. Also, the Library will be closed Saturday April 28, for the A.V. Brewery Beer Festival.

Thanks, Liz Dusenberry

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FOR YOU REMAINING bibliophiles out there, this book sale is mondo boffo, a kind of miniature version of the annual SF Library sale, but with the huge advantage of not having to fight off book dealers and other undesirables. Lots of first editions, and an array of really good stuff from Anderson Valley's discerning readers.

AND THE BOOK SALE occurs the same weekend at the Anderson Valley Wild Flower Show, a home grown event which, over the years, has evolved into a truly impressive display, complete with expert botanists on hand to identify your mystery plants. The ava's favorite event of the year, and if that doesn't ensure a quality event, what will?

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IN DEFENSE of the Potter Valley kid reviled in local media as a chomo, as if he were some kind of slobbering playground lurk. With his bail set at a hundred thou, which is lower than any number of truly dangerous lurks arrested lately in Ukiah, Willits and Fort Bragg, and fifty or so (at least) registered sex offenders in each of our County's lead cities, why make this kid Perv of the Week?


YOU DON'T have to go back very far in America's dubious sexual history to find large numbers of lasting marriages between young women and older men. Why my very own grandfather legally married my grandmother when she was 15 and he was 33, and she chose him. 14 and 15 year olds then certainly aren't the porn-drenched 14 and 15 year olds of today. Assuming there's intelligent, proportionate life in the Ukiah Courthouse, I think this relationship should be thoroughly evaluated and, if it's not exploitive, if it's genuinely affectionate, the authorities ought to back off. (Look at this kid! He looks like he's 14 himself! The girl probably looks like she's 35.)

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[1] ‘Depending on the character and maturity of the involved parties, i would think either:

Bummer! The modern moral police state stomps on young love! Girls are always more mature than boys in adolescence, and a younger girl/older guy pairing is natural. A hundred years ago, people would have thought this age difference normal in a relationship, and shaken their heads in amazement at our prohibitions. Or… Scuzzbag dude can’t find anyone his own age, and preys on young, innocent girl who will be flattered by the “older man” attention; if it were my daughter i’d say, Throw him to the wolves.

[2] I would agree.. but honestly.. it’s not a big deal in my book. I would have more sympathy for the guy who will be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life, which is a terrible, terrible label to wear.

[3] There is a huge gulf of knowledge, development, experience, maturity, etc. between a 13 year old and an 18 year old, no matter whether the older party is a scuzzbag or not, and regardless of the genders. think back to where you were psychologically and what you thought you knew about sex at 13 and again at 18. 13 is middle school. might not have even had a full, comprehensive sex ed class yet. 18 is old enough to drive, vote, purchase a firearm, smoke, and serve in the armed forces. we have these laws for a reason – if the child gets pregnant, she’s less likely to finish high school or get a GED with a baby, while the adult is in a position to skip town, change his name, and never face any responsibility for leaving a child behind to raise a child.

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THE JUNE ELECTION is already getting rough in the bucolic Anderson Valley. A segment of local school staffers have aimed a deluge of criticism at Superintendent Hutchins, who they blame for an elastic budget deficit and other alleged sins of personal style. Mrs. Hutchins is also a candidate for County Superintendent of Schools. She's running against a person of cavernous negatives, beginning with his failure to recognize ordinary English language vocabulary. He hopes to succeed a long line of crooks and mental defectives who have held the office over the last forty years, which has happened because the average Mendo person has no idea what the office does, where it's located, who staffs it, how much public money it spends every fiscal year and so on. If the County Superintendent's office got half as much attention as, say, the Supervisors, Mr. Barrett, a Ukiah School District drone naturally endorsed by the aforementioned defectives, would not be considered a serious candidate for the office. Straight up, the mighty AVA is for Mrs. Hutchins, if for no other reason than she isn't Barrett. But a slug of local school people will support Barrett because he isn't Mrs. Hutchins. And there we are.

NOT TO GO all legalistic here, but I think there's a prohibition of partisan political signs on public property, and wouldn't there be screams if Mrs. Hutchins arrayed her campaign signs on the two local campuses?

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George Hollister writes: Come on. So Judy Bari did not sell papers, and all the other anti-timber activists who have crossed the threshold of the AVA? Lively and interesting, means indulging any nut case who can write. I am not opposed. And if it keeps the presses running, I support. OK, so you are likely saying that the AVA doesn’t support political activists who run for office. There was Liz Henry, though. She was not supported because she would focus on good county governance. Same for Charles Peterson. Now in the 5th race we have two anti-timber activists running. We will see.

ED REPLY: One man's nut case… Judi Bari, like her sister Gina Kolata of the NYT, was a very good writer who brilliantly clarified the Timber Wars, but at the time there were lots of good writers in the ava on a range of subjects. Overall, Bari’s presence in the ava probably harmed sales because she was intensely disliked by lots of people, not just timber people. We supported Liz Henry, subsequently sabbed by Coast Lib, over Heather Drum, a wholly owned subsidiary of G-P. I thought Liz was an excellent supervisor who fairly represented everyone in the 4th District. She was succeeded by two ciphers until Gjerde was finally elected. She was not anti-timber, George. Her husband was a forester, not that he seemed to influence her much either way. I’d have to look it up but I’m pretty sure we were never more than luke warm on Charles Peterson. Looking back, Bari and others merely drew attention to the obvious, which was a corporate cash-in for short-term profit-taking over the long-term interests of an entire industry, which worked well for the Northcoast when the timber grandees in the form of private families, were wise enough to cut just enough to keep them prospering forever. LP and GP subsequently cut and run as their execs and shareholders cashed in big time. Local loggers were caught in the middle and got played by the corps. In defense of the ava of that time, circa 1990, our coverage was quite good. The PD, some of us will recall, routinely prevented their correspondent, Mike Geniella, from covering timber fairly and finally removed him from timber stories altogether. I heard at the time that cry baby Harry Merlo himself would call the PD's cringing editors to complain about Geniella's reporting if Geniella so much as presented the enviro perspective. Back to Liz Henry: I think she was very brave given that her husband was a state forester under pressure from Big Timber and her daughter was caught up with the psycho-wing of Earth First! where she was treated so abusively, as young women often were, she tried to kill herself. Liz was another person caught between ugly forces. My personal regret from that time is that I also got played by Bari, post-bombing. I was blind until Steve Talbot discovered the truth about it, and still kick myself that I didn't see it myself. But it was all quite a time, though, wasn't it, George? Complete with the FBI, it now seems clear, covering up a bizarre series of events.

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, "‘Do something about your tail, Skrag. It's all over the place.’ There's no correcting the guy. He says, ‘The ladies like it just the way it is, you celibate mutt. Eat your heart out’."

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My dear Quizzlies, or is it Quizzlings, Friends, and Valley 'Socialites' (?) In order to provide various exercises for your minds, The General Knowledge and Trivia Quiz will be held at Lauren's Restaurant tomorrow evening, April 12th, at 7pm. We offer this extremely stimulating evening for your mental and dining pleasure on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month. Hope to see you there, Steve Sparks, Quiz Master

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IN HONOR of the upcoming 95th Annual Anderson Valley Wildflower Show: Not a wildflower, but a huge Anderson Valley manzanita.

(Click to enlarge)

(I left the daypack in the shot to provide scale.) This is the biggest manzanita I can recall seeing in Anderson Valley. Do any locals know of a larger one?

Best, Marshall Newman

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Ricky Wayne Owens was sentenced to seven years in state prison for child endangerment resulting in great bodily injury at 2:30 this afternoon. However, Judge John Behnke, in consideration of several letters from community leaders, and the family of the victim, suspended execution of the sentence and placed Mr. Owens on five years of probation with the following conditions: That he serve one year in jail, and upon his release enter a six-month residential rehab program for his methamphetamine addiction; he will also be required to attend a one year child abuse counseling program. He was remanded into custody to begin serving the jail sentence.

Judge Behnke said, “The defendant is presumptively ineligible for probation due to the great bodily injury to the victim, however the defendant has no prior record of violence and the victim has fully recovered. Probation is recommending the mid-term of four years with three years consecutive for the great bodily injury. He’s 50 years old and only has methamphetamine related convictions on his record; his intelligence is below average; he has good community and family support; and the family of the victim is not seeking a prison sentence, and so I find these mitigating circumstances and will suspend execution of sentence and place the defendant on probation. Given his age and the support shown by the community and family, I gave little weight to the meth addiction and while we saw from the video how callous he appeared, I think he is genuinely remorseful.”

Mr. Owens’s lawyer, Alternate Public Defender Patricia Littlefield thought the child abuse counseling was superfluous, as Mr. Owens has no children of his own, but Judge Behnke said, “All human beings have contact with children, whether their own or not, so I can’t see how it would be in the interest of justice to waive this program.”

The judge went on to say that some aspects of the program may not apply to a man with no children of his own and that those parts could be waived.

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by Bruce McEwen

“A friend is, as it were, a second self.” —Cicero 

Last week a jury found Jose Carrasco guilty of count two domestic abuse by causing corporal injury to his girlfriend, Ana Hernandez, and count three vandalism, the breaking her phone.

Deputy DA Tom Geddes wanted conviction on the far more serious charge contained in count one, assault with means likely to cause great bodily injury, but it’s all the jurors were willing to give him was the two lesser charges.


Why this particular case, which should have been settled for the lesser-included charges to begin with, went to trial in the first place was a mystery.

In Deputy DA Geddes opening remarks to the jury it seemed impossible that the victim could have survived the attack the defendant had allegedly mounted against her.

“Ladies and gentleman, you will hear — not from Ana Hernandez herself, but from what she told Deputy Denton at the hospital — that he, the defendant, Jose Carrasco, backhanded her merely for asking about her boots … punched her repeatedly in the face … dragged her outside by the hair and threw her down … kicked her in the face … hit her with an uppercut while she sat on the toilet … stomped on her head…”—on and on. You had to wonder how she lived to tell about it, but if even half was true, Jose is no gentleman. And, as it developed, Miss Hernandez was not on a night out from the Convent of the Little Sisters.

They had gone to the bar. Ana Hernandez, who had already been swigging from a bottle of vodka, drank more at the bar, got stinking drunk, so drunk she made a pest of herself, tried to hit Carrasco and his friends with the empty vodka bottle for commenting on some other woman at the bar, smashed the empty bottle in the parking lot, lost her shoes the moment she took them off, wandered around falling-down drunk half the night, and ended up at the emergency room where she told Deputy Denton a story about an innocent little girl who only asked polite questions about her lost shoes and was beaten nearly to death by an ogre she thought was her boyfriend of four years, Jose Carrasco.

The trouble was, her injuries — a swollen eye, a bump on the head, scratches on her legs, leaves in her hair — were not serious enough to square with the violence she said she endured at the hands and feet of the defendant. In fact, her injuries were fairly consistent with what you can do to yourself stumbling around in the dark with a fifth of vodka in your belly.

On the stand, of course, Ana Hernandez remembered nothing. She recanted her story of being beaten up by Jose Carrasco — which is not uncommon in domestic abuse cases.

Geddes: “The People call Ana Hernandez.”

Prosecutor Geddes had asked the jurors to watch closely as Ana Hernandez testified and to assess her demeanor for themselves, to judge whether she was recanting in what he called “a classic case of domestic abuse.” The prosecutor was suggesting, it seemed clear, that on sober reflection on having done something unconscionable while drunk out of your mind had caused an edit of Ana’s memory. But Ana was not articulate enough to recall what had happened, if she could recall it or desired to recall her end of the evening. (It takes years of Alcoholics Anonymous meetings to get to the reparations part of the 12-Step process, where you can finally come out and say what an ass you’ve been.) Anna just kept repeating, “I don’t recall.” And, “I can’t remember.”

Then again, it was also very likely that she was so drunk she annoyed Carrasco to the point he struck her. (He’d been drinking too.) She seemed to have been pretty exasperating, and Jose Carrasco was no paragon of patience, by all indications. So he may well have hit her and kicked her out rather than take care of her; and that, to my mind, was his obligation to her, no matter how drunk she was.

The victim came in looking like she might die of embarrassment. In a faint, peeping voice with her eyes downcast, her head hung and her face averted, she answered every question with, “I don’t recall,” or “I can’t remember.” So Geddes took up the transcript from the interview with Deputy Denton at the hospital and read from it, to refresh Ana’s memory.

Geddes: “Didn’t you tell Deputy Denton that when you got in the taxi you took off your boots then when you leaned forward to ask Jose where your shoes were, he backhanded you in the face?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Geddes: “Didn’t you say, ‘All I was asking was asking was where’s my shoes, and he started punching me in the face’?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Geddes: “Didn’t you say, ‘That was uncalled for when all I was doing was asking very politely, and why are you all mad just ’cause I asked for my shoes’?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Geddes: “Didn’t you tell Deputy Denton that when you got home and were only asking for taxi fare to go to your sister’s house you accidentally knocked over his bong and broke it, and that he then dragged you outside by the hair, threw you down the ramp, kicked you in the face and stomped on your head’?”

For breaking a bong? Lots of excess can be laid at the feet of the stoners, but this one seems a bit much.

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Geddes: “Didn’t you tell the deputy that said you would leave but needed to use the bathroom and when you were in there he came in and struck you with an uppercut that chipped your teeth?”

Deputy Denton saw no signs of chipped teeth, nor yet any other injury to her mouth or jaw.

Hernandez: “I can’t remember.”

Geddes: “And that when you were trying to call for a ride and he threw your cell phone down and broke it? Twice?”

Ouch! That’s really laying it on — broke it twice!

Hernandez: “I can’t remember.”

Geddes: “Didn’t you tell the deputy he did all this because you merely asked for money for a taxi?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Heidi Larson of the Office of the Public Defender tried to refresh Ana’s memory: “Isn’t it true that you didn’t go to the bar in a taxi, at all, did you Ana?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Larson: “And isn’t it true that you went in a friend’s car and you took the bottle of vodka with you?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Larson: “Do you recall trying to hit Jose and his friend with the vodka bottle for commenting on another woman at the bar?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Larson; “Do you recall throwing the bottle and breaking it in the parking lot at the Perkins Street bar?”

Hernandez: “I can’t remember.”

Larson: “Do you remember falling down when you tried to hop over a fence?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Larson: “You told the deputy that all you wanted was money for a taxi, and you asked for it very politely, but if you look at this photograph, here, isn’t that $21 and change, next to your cell phone at the hospital?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Larson: “Jose’s father actually gave you money for a taxi, didn’t he?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

Larsen: “How did you get to the hospital at around 6:00 am the next morning?”

Hernandez: “I don’t recall.”

The People called Deputy Christian “CJ” Denton. Deputy Denton confirmed that Ana told him the story about how she’d been beaten by Jose Carrasco, and admitted that he waited for over an hour to speak with her, because she’d been given morphine by the doctor and was sleeping when he arrived at the emergency room. So, from closing time at the bar, 2:00 am until after 7:00 am at the hospital, Ana had come down considerably from the vodka OD, but as any one with any experience with booze — and the jurors must have had some experience to judge by their verdicts — she was still in a state of vindictive jealousy from the comments made at the bar by Jose and his friend, so she piled it on in the physical abuse department, and Deputy Denton related it all just the way it was told to him.

Then came the part where the jury gets to listen to the recorded interview with Ana in her hospital bed. From the outset it was obvious that she was in a cloud of alcoholic and narcotic stupor, delivering a slurred, garish nightmare of a narrative. Three times prosecutor Geddes stopped the recording on DVD, noting the disapproval on the faces of the jurors, saying it wasn’t a true and accurate version of the recording, and finally he put it on an old boom-box type CD player, which was no better. The evidence, to put it mildly, was weak. And yet someone, higher up the chain of command, no doubt, had insisted on going for the maximum possible penalty — assault with great bodily injury.

The doctor at the emergency room was called and he said that yes, Ana’s eye was swollen from a pink-eye infection, but the swelling was more than that. So she had either been hit or fallen on her face. Nothing conclusive there. The leaves and debris in her hair could have resulted from falling over fences or being thrown down. Nothing conclusive there, either. Same for the bump on the head and scratches on her leg.

Across the hall another jury trial ended much the same way — the jury found the defendant not guilty of the main charge, a dope DUI, and only guilty of the lesser charge, possession.

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Dear AVA,

We think that your readers will be interested in this event: The League of Women Voters Mendocino County, the Senior Civics teachers, and school administration have planned a 5th District Supervisor Candidates forum at Mendocino High School on Friday, May 4, 10:05 — 11:15 am. The Senior Civics class students will ask questions that matter to them. Each candidate will have one minute to answer each question. Should be interesting! There are 40+ students who are old enough to vote in the June election. We hope to have them all registered to vote by lunchtime. Because this event will be held during school hours, on the school campus, the public is not invited. If your newspaper would like to send a reporter/photographer, please let me know and I will supply more information and include that person’s name on the attendee list.

Carol Czadek, Voter Services Chair, LWVMC

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The League of Women Voters Mendocino County has scheduled two Candidate Forums:

Assessor/Clerk/Recorder, Friday, April 27, 6 - 8 PM at the Redwood Coast Senior Center, 490 N. Harold Street, Fort Bragg

Mendocino County Superintendent of Schools, Wednesday, May 2, 6 - 8 PM at the Caspar Community Center

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On 04-07-2018 at approximately 11:41 P.M., a Deputy with the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office was on uniformed patrol in the area of the Round Valley Elementary School in Covelo. While in that area, the Deputy observed an older model pickup truck traveling on High School Street and turn eastbound on Howard Street. When the vehicle turned, the rear end of the vehicle slid into the oncoming lane of traffic. The Deputy attempted to catch the pickup truck, which turned northbound on Highway 162. The Deputy observed the pickup continue to accelerate while traveling northbound on Highway 162 so the Deputy attempted to initiate a traffic enforcement stop on the vehicle. The pickup continued speeding northbound on Highway 162 and did not yield to the emergency lights and siren of the patrol vehicle. The pickup turned westbound on Biggar Lane and the Deputy observed numerous other traffic violations to include the suspect vehicle being driven on the wrong side of the road. The pickup eventually turned into a residential driveway along Biggar Lane where the Deputy was able to take the suspect into custody without further incident. The driver was identified as Orlando Esquivel, 20, of Covelo during this investigation.


Esquivel was advised and placed under arrest for Evading a Peace Officer: Reckless Driving and Evading a Peace Officer: Driving on Wrong Side of Road. Esquivel was subsequently booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $35,000 bail.

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On 04-08-2018 at approximately 9:36 A.M., a Deputy with the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office was on uniformed patrol on Sherwood Road in Willits. The Deputy observed a gold sedan stopped in the area of Sherwood Road and Daphne Way committing a traffic violation. The Deputy turned around to attempt and initiate a traffic enforcement stop on the gold sedan, which had began traveling northbound on Sherwood Road. The Deputy continued to accelerate in an attempt to catch the gold sedan and activated the emergency lights and siren on the patrol vehicle to initiate a traffic stop. The gold sedan did not yield to the traffic stop and continued traveling at high rates of speed on Sherwood Road. After multiple turns, the Deputy lost sight of the gold sedan and terminated the pursuit. The Deputy continued searching for the suspect and vehicle in the area of Madrone Drive. After searching for approximately 5-10 minutes, the Deputy observed a male subject running in the road near the intersection of Maize Place and Maize Way. Upon seeing the Deputy, the suspect fled into a nearby wooded area. The Deputy was able to recognize the subject running as Wesley Silva, 50, of Willits, who had an active warrant issued for his arrest.


The Deputy exited his patrol vehicle and ordered Silva to return to the roadway. Silva complied and was detained for the bench warrant without further incident. MCSO dispatch confirmed that Silva had an active misdemeanor bench warrant for his arrest for violating the terms of his probation. Silva was also determined to be on active formal probation in Mendocino County with terms to include: obey all laws, and submit person/residence/vehicle to search without warrant. During the subsequent investigation, the Deputy was able to find evidence linking Silva to the gold sedan involved in the earlier pursuit. The Deputy located Silva's vehicle a short distance from where he detained Silva. A search of Silva's vehicle was conducted pursuant to his probation terms and the investigating Deputy found a false/hidden compartment inside Silva's vehicle. The Deputy searched the hidden compartment and found it contained controlled substances. Silva was advised and placed under arrest for Evading a Peace Officer: Reckless Driving, Use of a False Compartment, Probation Violation], Possession of a Controlled Substance, and his misdemeanor bench warrant. Silva was subsequently booked into the Mendocino County Jail on a no bail status pursuant to the bench warrant issued for his arrest.

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On 04-07-2018 at about 9:01 AM Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to an unwanted subject at a business in the 1400 block of South State Street in Ukiah. The owner of the business reported a male subject was sleeping in a vehicle outside the business. Deputies responded and located Keegan Knight, 27, of Ukiah, sleeping in his vehicle.


Deputies observed Knight was displaying symptoms of illicit drug usage and also observed drug paraphernalia in plain sight in the vehicle. Knight was taken into custody for possessing drug paraphernalia and his vehicle was subsequently searched for additional contraband. During the search deputies located a loaded AR-15 type semi-automatic assault rifle and over 100 rifle cartridges for the rifle. Deputies also located a useable amount of methamphetamine on Knight's person. Deputes learned Knight is prohibited from possession any firearms in the state of California for a 10 year period. The assault rifle did not have a serial number and had not been registered as an assault weapon under California law. Knight was evaluated and determined to be under the influence of a controlled substance. Knight was arrested for Possession of an assault weapon, Possession of controlled substance while armed with loaded firearm, Persons prohibited from possessing firearms for 10 years, Under influence of controlled substance while armed with loaded firearm, Carry concealed weapon in vehicle, Possession of short barreled rifle, and Possession of a controlled substance and booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $60,000 bail.

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4 Bar K Ranch in Boonville, CA is offering several premium grass fed beef 1/4s to finish our spring sale. This is local grass fed beef, raised in rural Anderson Valley, in Mendocino County, with no shots or hormones, just excellent, lean, grass finished beef. We raise our beef free range, organically, in a humane, safe, and stress free way. This insures your beef is the best quality and safest meat, that is raised and sold in the right way. Please contact me and I will send our information flyer in a PDF format. It should answer most of your questions, but feel free to call me anytime if you're interested. We sell live grass-fed Murray Grey/cross beef, between 14-18 months of age, by the quarter beef (or more). The Murray Grey breed is known to be the best grass fed beef available. Your satisfaction is guaranteed. If interested please contact Dave Kooyers at (707) 895-2325.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, April 11, 2018

Bazor, Brandes, Britton, Carlile

JEREMIE BAZOR, Redwood Valley. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

KELLY BRANDES, Mendocino. Vandalism.

NEIL BRITTON JR., Covelo. Domestic battery.

BRYCE CARLILE JR., Willits. Probation revocation.

DeCampo, Doyle, Marmon

CESAR DECAMPO, Ukiah. Petty theft, false ID.

CHRISTOPHER DOYLE, Hopland. Probation revocation.

ERICA MARMON, Ukiah. DUI, probation revocation.

Morales-Saldana, Nelson, Riley

DANA MORALES-SALDANA, Covelo. Vandalism.

MANDEE NELSON, Ukiah. Protective order violation.

WESTON RILEY, Santa Rosa/Redwood Valley. Probation revocation.

Sanchez, Sanchez-Dejesus, Shillings, Still

RAYMOND SANCHEZ, Fort Bragg. Burglary, protective order violation, probation revocation.

EDWIN SANCHEZ-DEJESUS, Potter Valley. DUI, suspended license, probation revocation.

DAYNIECE SHILLINGS, Ukiah. Burglary, receiving stolen property, probation revocation.

AARON STILL, Willits. Failure to appear.

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by Juan José Millás (translated by Louis S. Bedrock)

It’s quite likely that the people in this photograph have no idea whether it’s Monday or Tuesday. Bombs not only do away with apartment blocks, they also destroy dreams. It’s possible that by now, in some parts of Syria, people don’t know which day of the week it is or why it matters, since civilians being bombed have other priorities.

Nor can we affirm without fear of being mistaken that the adult who is carrying the suitcase is the father of the child whose head protrudes from the opening between the two sides of the lateral zipper. In fact, the caption of the photo describes the child as being carried by a relative.

Perhaps it isn’t even a family member because explosives kill off family ties in addition to killing off Wednesdays and concrete. All of a sudden, institutions as firmly established as parenthood, grandparenthood, and fraternity disappear. There is no convention that resists an accurate missile.

Perhaps the man in the picture (if it is indeed a man—we’re not 100% sure about that either), as he was sifting through the debris of what once was his house, in search of two shirts and a couple of portraits with which to flee Ghouta, found the child crying in some corner of some place which, in another time, had been a staircase and hastily included him among the sparse luggage of his escape.

After all, if housing has been demolished, if Mondays, Tuesdays, Marches, and Aprils have disappeared, as have the hours of getting up and going to bed or watching television, why would the rest of the cultural conventions that we’ve acquired throughout history survive?

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I just read an article about illegal immigration. And the question was posed as to what the reaction would be from Vicente Fox or Jorge Ramos to an influx of millions of illegal African or Chinese immigrants into Mexico. Lefties won’t like the source, NR, nor the author, Victor Davis Hanson, but the question isn’t invalidated by who wrote it. In this age of baloney and bullshit I’ll get logic where I find it.

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I was just there last week and I saw the future, not the past. To anyone watching the UN Security Council “debate” last night it is crystal clear we are in the last days before all hell breaks out. So, here we are at Judgment Day, and there surely will not be one soul out on Pennsylvania Avenue to raise an anti-war placard. The tattered remains of the American peace movement is rotten to the core.

— Gilbert Doctorow

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(Click to enlarge)

(Photo from Susie de Castro)

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Students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School recently published a manifesto advocating a number of changes to improve school safety from armed intruders. The last one — “increase funding for school security” — in particular should be actionable, and I doubt that even the most dedicated right-to-bear arms advocate could object.

I have been a high school classroom teacher for nearly 40 years, recently substituting in four local school districts. Every plan I have seen for dealing with an armed intruder on campus first specifies that the classroom door be locked. However, while there has been some improvement over the past few years, every one of these schools still has classrooms that cannot be locked from the inside without use of a key.

In the Virginia Tech shootings in 2007 and in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High shootings this year, brave faculty members and students have been killed or injured while attempting to lock the door to exclude the assailant. This may have been the case in other incidents. Innocent people seeking refuge should be able to secure a classroom easily and quickly without incurring personal risk.

School boards and state legislators should mandate that all classroom doors be secured with inside activated locks not requiring a key. Who could possibly object?

Steve Harness

Witter Springs

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The Central Coast is becoming California's weed hotspot...

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Caltrans and the City of Willits are hosting an informational open house for the Willits Rehabilitation and Relinquishment of Old Highway 101 on Tuesday, April 17 at Willits City Hall Community Room at 111 East Commercial Street, Willits. The public is invited to drop in anytime from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. Caltrans and other officials will be on hand to answer questions. The project plans and tentative work schedule will be available for review. Merchants and interested residents can learn how to sign up for construction updates. The construction contract was awarded to Granite Construction. The project is tentatively scheduled to start at the end of April and be completed by the end of November 2018. This project will bring the road into good repair and then turn it over the City of Willits and the County of Mendocino. Phase one work includes upgrading sidewalks and curbs to current accessibility standards, upgrades to existing drainage facilities, slurry seal, and restriping. Phase two includes grinding, paving and restriping the roadway. For more safety information and the latest updates like Caltrans District 1 on Facebook.

Cori Reed
Public Information Officer
for Lake and Mendocino Counties
Caltrans District 1

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DWIGHT GARNER'S REVIEW in the NY Times of a biography of photographer Berenice Abbott mentions her good looks but doesn't include a good picture of the artist who was, among other things, an excellent portrait photographer (The Carl Van Vechten portrait doesn't do her justice):

Berenice Abbott (by Grace Mayer, 1936); James Joyce (1928)

“Everybody writes, but they know they are not ‘writers,’” Abbott once said. “Everybody photographs, but they don’t realize they are not photographers.”

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Flyover of Jupiter's north pole in infrared.

(Marco McClean)

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Volunteers Needed For Invasive Plant Removal

Hendy Woods State Park, Sunday, May 6th, 10 am to 12 pm

Meet at the Hendy Woods State Park Day Use Picnic Area

Enjoy FREE Park entrance for the day

Bring some gardening gloves, hand trowels/loppers & a picnic lunch

Meet new people &/or catch up with old friends

Ages 5 & up

(Rain cancels)

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Whitesboro Grange Saturday

A traditional Spaghetti Dinner will be held at the Whitesboro Grange on Saturday, April 14th from 4-7 p.m. On the menu are salad, spaghetti with Bob Canclini’s famous sauce (meat or vegetarian), garlic bread, beverage and pie or cake for dessert. Adults $8, age 6-12 half price, children under 6 eat FREE. The community and public are invited for a great spring meal. Whitesboro Grange is located 1.5 miles east on Navarro Ridge. Watch for signs just south of the Albion Bridge.

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Fort Bragg, CA - April 11, 2018 - Mendocino Coast District Hospital (MCDH) and the Mendocino Coast Healthcare District Board of Directors are pleased to announce the addition of Michael Ellis, MBA as our permanent CFO on April 10, 2018 after a national search lasting several months. MCDH reviewed many applicants and came up with several candidates whose experience and proven results would be the most beneficial to our District. Final candidates were interviewed by all key stakeholders including employees that directly report to the CFO, the Senior Leadership Team, the CEO, the Finance Committee, MCDH Human Resources, and the Board of Directors. An extensive background check was conducted on all final candidates.

"We welcome Mike to our team here at MCDH and to our community on the Mendocino coast. We are all very excited to go to work with him on the tough issues that face healthcare organizations today. His experience and skills fit our District's needs and we look forward to continued progress and success on a variety of issues with Mike's financial leadership," said Bob Edwards, CEO.

Mike has extensive experience in Hospital Finance with a work history that spans 26 years, the most recent in Critical Access Hospitals in Arizona and Nevada. His skills include budgets, revenue cycle, financing, contract review and regulatory compliance such as OSHPD. "I'm looking forward to working with MCDH's leadership and staff, being on the team in its mission of providing sustainable quality healthcare in this community," said Mike Ellis, MCDH CFO. "My wife and I have lived in much of the Western United States and are excited to be here at the beautiful Mendocino coast and look forward to becoming involved in the local community."

An Arizona native, Mike was born and raised in a small rural copper mining town. While attending the University of Arizona he met his wife Beth, a California native and now a recently retired school teacher. They have three grown children: Virginia is a 3rd grade school teacher in Japan; Tim is an officer in the Oregon National Guard and an analyst with Fisher Investments; and Suzannah is helping her husband through medical school in Ft. Smith, AR, and has their only grandchild, AnnaBeth.

Doug Shald, Director of PR & Marketing

Phone: 707.961.4961


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News from Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

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SACRAMENTO – The Central California Hemophilia Foundation (CCHF) announced today the following educational event in recognition of World Hemophilia Day:

What: On April 17, 2018 CCHF will join with the global bleeding disorders community to celebrate World Hemophilia Day and promote this year’s theme, Sharing Knowledge. World Hemophilia Day is an opportunity to promote awareness of bleeding disorders and help individuals through education and training.

Where: La Sierra Community Center, 5325 Engle Road, Carmichael, CA 95608

When: 5:15pm, Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Contact: Lynne Kinst,

The Central California Hemophilia Foundation (CCHF) serves individuals and families affected by inherited bleeding disorders in 29 counties of northern and central California. For more information, visit

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“Yes, Mr. Zuckerberg, you may have access to our microphone.”

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The Palestinians’ human, civil, and national rights, including the right of return, are abrogated every single day by the Israeli authorities. Any meaningful discussion cannot start with the status quo but must address, up front, such issues as the abnormal practices of occupation, settlements on occupied territory, the separation wall, house demolitions, severe restrictions on movement, and military assaults.

Nevertheless, most of the countries of the world seem to accept this status quo as “normal,” at best occasionally questioning Israel’s behavior, or at worst, serving as apologists for Tel Aviv’s unjust policies.

I am proud to be part of the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights and also the Americans for Justice for Palestine أمريكان من أجل العدالة لفلسطين .

Here in Europe, I sometimes organize and lead rallies to free the Palestinian people, as my travel schedule permits.

Like racism or sexism in America, there are many aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian situation that are too late to undo, like the tens of thousands of Palestinians who have been killed in wars (including women and children), the decimation of Gaza and countless additional destruction, and the Palestinians’ historic and profound loss of home and homeland.

The reality of Israel’s occupation and apartheid, however, is ongoing; it is not “normal,” and the horrific consequences continue to unfold and worsen daily.

The really bad news is that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict could lead to an escalation that would engulf the world's superpowers in ever-widening and never-ending wars in the Middle East.

For more about the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict, see the meeting at the Council on Foreign Relations:!/conflict/israeli-palestinian-conflict

John at KMEC Radio 105.1 FM in Ukiah, CA



  1. George Hollister April 12, 2018

    “YOU DON’T have to go back very far in America’s dubious sexual history to find large numbers of lasting marriages between young women and older men”

    My 3-great grandmother Hollister was on the North side of 13 when she conceived my 2-great grandfather in 1834 Western New York. My 3-great grandfather was 19, and a good enough fellow that he had a grandson and great grandson named after him. The relationship between my 3 greats, from what I can tell, was a committed, and married one. That might be the rub with the Potter Valley kid. But with the way we have screwed up the foundations of marriage these days, marriage and commitment are out in Never-Never Land.

  2. Bruce Anderson April 12, 2018

    Us old folks forget how the fires of spring raged. In the PV case I’ll bet the girl’s parents disapproved of the relationship and called the police.

  3. George Hollister April 12, 2018

    “I was blind until Steve Talbot discovered the truth about it, and still kick myself that I didn’t see it myself. But it was all quite a time, though, wasn’t it, George? Complete with the FBI, it now seems clear, covering up a bizarre series of events.”

    It was quite a time, and interestingly, nothing with the left has changed. They are more money grubbing than any group of selective timber families ever were. It seems that excessive greed begets poverty, too.

    The questions remain as well. Some Freedom Of Information Act request, at some point in the future may reveal the story, maybe not.

  4. Louis Bedrock April 12, 2018

    Thank you John Sakowicz.
    I couldn’t agree more.

    Norman Finkelstein, whose parents experienced both the Warsaw Ghetto and a concentration camp, has said that if his parents were alive, they would identify with the Palestinians.

  5. james marmon April 12, 2018

    That isn’t my daughter Erika in catch of the day, it’s my cousin’s daughter, Erica spelled with a c.

    James Marmon
    Loving father and grandfather

    • james marmon April 12, 2018

      I put my daughter in a substance abuse treatment center for 1 year eight years ago, smartest thing I’ve ever done. Hopefully my cousin’s Erica finally gets the help she needs, this makes 3 times she’s made the “catch of the day” so far.

  6. Jim Updegraff April 12, 2018

    Baseball: Interesting day yesterday Giants lost to Arizona 7 -3. Was a no contest game,

    A’s won big against the Dodgers 16 -6 with 21 hits. Hopefully, the A’s batters have come to life.

  7. John Sakowicz April 12, 2018

    Thank you for your kind words, Louis Bedrock.

  8. Jim Updegraff April 12, 2018

    Sako in Rome: John, you speak my mind!!

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