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The case by a man accusing police of unnecessary restraint ending in his brother’s death, starting their depositions. Steven Neuroth’s brother says police used unnecessary physical restraint at the Mendocino County Jail in June 2014. His brother says Neuroth was a mentally ill man with schizophrenia. His lawyer says they expect to go to trial in the case next year, but there’s a settlement conference set for Sept. 20.

Two chickens and seven mosquito samples have tested positive for West Nile virus. And Vector control reports there may be a human case too. The chickens come from Upper Lake, and the mosquitoes were found in Clearlake, Clearlake Oaks, Kelseyville, Lakeport, and Upper Lake. So far there’s been 29 mosquito samples, 3 dead birds, and two sentinel chickens in Lake County with the virus this year. But Vector Control says right now is the peak for West Nile virus activity.

A Child Safety Seat Check-Up event is planned for victims of the Clayton Fire. The California Highway (CHP) and the Lake County Fire Protection District are holding the event this Sunday from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm at the Lake County Fire Protection District Fire Station 65, that’s in Lower Lake. There will be folks providing free Child Safety seats and helping set them up. Any seats damaged or destroyed in the fire or that have expired will be replaced, as supplies last. For more info (707) 279-0103.

Some neighbors in Ukiah have started a petition to do something about noise, loud parties, trash and other problems. The neighbors on Hortense Street say there’s a home that has a group of Mendocino College football players living in it. It was a rest home and just recently it was a group foster home. Now about 12 ballers from out of the area are renting the home. Neighbors, including the former Ukiah Mayor Fred Schneiter say it’s more like a “frat house.” Police have been out several times. But the home owner says he thinks it’s more about race since most of the football players he’s renting to are black.

A new executive director’s been hired by FIRST 5 Mendocino. Roseanne Ibarra takes over after leaving Congressman Jared Huffman’s office where she worked as a Field Representative for Mendocino and Sonoma Counties. She’s also worked for a major health insurance company and used to work at FIRST 5 Mendocino. Ibarra says she’s excited to get back to work, in her new role and help support the great work they do for children in the early stages of life. The organization invests money in local nonprofits across the county.

Not quite top marks for Lake County students in English and math. Across the state, students’ scores were up from last year to this spring. But the scores also show there are fewer than 50% of students who scored as proficient — 49 percent in English and 37 percent in math. They were 30 percent and 19 percent in Lake County. But the scores were better than last year’s which was the first year of the new version of standardized tests in Calif. The state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson calls it progress toward upgrading the state’s education system.

A consultant hired by a wine company that wants to build on 80 acres in Hidden Valley Lake says another company is taking credit for the environmental impact report. Northwest Biosurvey says SHN Consulting Engineers & Geologists did not have the full biological study of potentially impacted plant species included in the report. They also claim the company presented the study’s information and produced graphics without any attribution. Northwest says they’ve never run into this before, but they’re more concerned about late-blooming plants not being included in the impact report. A lawyer working for Wild Diamond Vineyards, says they disagree with the assumptions.

A new report shows California legalizing recreational marijuana could mean the industry could earn $6.5 billion by 2020 . The market research firms ArcView and New Frontier research the possibility of recreational cannabis which is on the ballot in November. The report says if the Adult Use of Marijuana Act succeeds and is implemented by 2018, legal weed sales would skyrocket earnings to the neighborhood of $1.6 billion the first year alone. The report says the size of Calif and its economy already accounts for almost half of all the country’s legal cannabis sales.

Almost $16 million dollars is being awarded to local fire departments and fire safe councils by Cal Fire. The 2016-2017 State Responsibility Area Fire Prevention Fund and tree mortality grants to reduce the possibility of wildfires and dead and dying trees in and around communities of the State Responsibility Area (SRA). The Cal Fire Director says in the last couple weeks it’s been shown how destructive a fire season can be and how helpful fire prevention projects can be to protect lives and property.

The official candidate list for the November ballot has been released by the Lake County Registrar of Voters. It shows the races for city councils, local school district seats and other elections in the area. Clearlake and Lakeport have three city council seats open with six candidates vying for the seats. Two school districts — Yuba Community College District and Konocti Unified don’t have much competition but in Middletown there are four candidates running for three vacancies.

A man accused of stabbing another man in Clearlake has pleaded not guilty. Police say Craig Fenno, who was on the run for a couple of weeks after the incident last month, is charged with several crimes including Obstructing/Resisting Executive Officer, Battery on a Peace Officer With Injury and a Probation Violation. Attempted murder charges have not been filed but police suspect him of being at a home August 8th where he tried running away and had to be tazered after the stabbing.

A man in a superhero costume combo is accused of stealing beer. Police in Buffalo, New York say they’ve been searching for a man who was seen in a Batman costume but with a Captain America mask on. They say he went into a convenience store Tuesday with two 18-packs of beer and didn’t pay. The man is further described as being in his 20s.

Work on the Moore Street bridge over the Russian River in Calpella means road closures. The road between North State Street and Eastside Calpella Road is closed starting Monday. The Mendocino County Department of Transportation is having seismic retrofitting work done, the closure for about two weeks. The transportation director says there will be detour signs up making it obvious which way to go instead. He says they’re working with schools and bus schedules.

Franchise Tax Board is offering help to those visiting the Clayton Fire Local Assistance Center. In cases where the Governor declares a disaster, a victim may claim a loss in the taxable year the disaster happened or the taxable year immediately before the disaster. The board can also help get copies of lost California tax returns free of charge. Recreating lost records can be difficult, but is essential for insurance purposes or obtaining loans. The Clayton Fire Local Assistance Center is open all week from 10am-7pm. It’s at 16195 Main St. in Lower Lake.

The Lake County Planning Commission is holding public hearings on a few major projects including the new Dollar General store in Middletown. The meeting this morning at 9 a.m. at the Board of Supervisors’ chambers at the Lake County Courthouse. The Dollar General discussion is set for 10 a.m. including a public hearing on the design review permit for the developer’s major use permit application for the store at 20900 Highway 29. As we’ve reported, the planning commission said no to the project earlier this year but the Board of Supervisors approved it last month on appeal.

Caltrans is having a public meeting to talk about a roundabout planned for the intersection of Highway 20 and Highway 53 east of Clearlake Oaks. The meeting from 5 to 7 p.m. tonight Aug. 25 at the Clearlake Oaks Moose Lodge which is near where the roundabout will go. You can drop in any time from 5-7pm. Caltrans says roundabouts are shown to improve safety and operation and this would be the fifth roundabout to be built in Lake County. It’s scheduled to be built in 2018.

The annual blessing of the grapes takes place in Hopland. Father Andrew Pacheco at Fetzer Vineyards yesterday to bless the first grapes plucked for the harvest. Pacheco reminded those in attendance that fermented grapes are part of church celebrations as medicine and sacrament. He says the blessing of the grapes is a Catholic tradition which Spanish settlers brought to Calif as part of their ritual. The grapes he blessed were Sauvignon Blanc.

Lawmakers have been unable to find a way to agree on how to tax the medical marijuana industry. Two bills opposed by the legislature. And the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws said they also were against them since they were being considered before the election. The two bills never even made it to a second floor vote and died in committee. Sen. Mike McGuire’s bill to create a 10 percent tax on medical cannabis dispensary sales and Assemblyman Jim Wood’s would tax growing medical cannabis. McGuire says he’s not sure why the two bills failed to move forward, but says they were both equitable and fair. He says it would have provided millions to fight illegal marijuana grows.

The State Assembly says yes to a bill to extend greenhouse gas reduction targets. There was heavy lobbying against it by Big Oil. And the Gov. Jerry Brown and Democratic legislative leaders lost to the oil industry regarding legislation to cut petroleum use by motor vehicles 50 percent by 2030. The Gov. spoke harshly against oil companies lobbying against the legislation but hailed lawmakers who supported it. He says he’s excited to sign the two bills to establish new accountability, transparency and equity standards. So the state will look to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030.

A new state report shows California is not watching how prescriptions of psychotropic medications are administered to foster care children. The audit tells legislators to direct the state and its counties to come up with an effective oversight, requiring periodic evaluations of state data to show which doctors may be inappropriately prescribing drugs. 3 Northern Calif. Senators are also pushing thru legislation on the matter, including Mike McGuire of Healdsburg whose bill requires yearly monitoring of high-prescribing doctors, and allows the California Medical Board to punish violators by revoking their licenses.

The Savings Bank of Mendocino County has donated $10,000 to the Habitat For Humanity Lake County Fire Rebuild Fund. Part of the donation’s made on behalf of bank customers involved in the eStatements campaign “Let’s Rebuild Together…” that went from May to July of this year. For each person who switched to eStatements, the bank donated money on their behalf. Habitat for Humanity helps low income households who work with the nonprofit in the building process. The homes are energy efficient, follow green or sustainable building practices and appropriate low energy appliances.

A couple of men from Mendocino County serving state prison sentences being considered for parole. Cupertino Solano was deemed suitable for parole last week but James Preston Rogers was denied. The California Department of Corrections Board of Parole took up both cases last week. Solano guilty of second-degree murder and has been in Folsom Prison serving 23 years to life for shooting two of his brothers-in-law to death in Anderson Valley after a domestic dispute in October 1989. The case isn’t over though, there’s now an up to 4 month review. Then the governor has to agree. Rogers was denied parole after going to prison for 15 years-to-life for the second-degree murder and dismemberment of his girlfriend, Christine Faye Hilton. Her body was found in Ukiah near the Russian River in September 2002. Her brother started a petition drive to prevent the parole.

2 people have been arrested after a woman told police she was held against her will at a motel in Ukiah. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call to the motel in the 600 block of South State Street early Sunday morning and found a woman who says she was being held by Theo Corcoran and Maila Linde, both of Willits. The victim says she and her boyfriend met the other two at the motel Saturday and they gave the boyfriend money to buy weed. She waited at the motel with the other 2, but the boyfriend didn’t come back so she tried leaving but they wouldn’t let her, and one threatened her with a gun. Later they all went looking for the boyfriend and she got away and called 911. Corcoran and Linde were arrested on suspicion of false imprisonment, being ex-felons in possession of a firearm, possession of ammunition while prohibited to do so, carrying a concealed firearm and possession of a controlled substance.

Sonoma County deputies say a man found dead in the water off Goat Rock Beach looks to have been shot in the head. They say they’re unsure if it was self-inflicted. Detectives at the scene yesterday and figured out who he was, but did not immediately release the info. Some beachgoers found the man and called police. Deputies, Cal Fire and state park personnel went to Goat Rock Beach. The body found in the surf zone north of the south parking lot.

A nice, fat raise for Cloverdale City Council by 85%. The raise is way more that cities of similar sizes pay elected officials. The council barely passed the raise on a vote of 3-2. So they will get $555/mo, instead of $300. Other cities of Cloverdale’s size pay their members about $250 to $300 a month. Council members have not seen a raise in about 17 years. The Press Democrat reports council members will now make more than all other cities besides Santa Rosa, where they get $800, but meet twice as often.

A new bill that’s passed the legislature and is headed to the Governor requires schools in earthquake active areas to secure heavy bookshelves, hanging light fixtures and other items that could fall over. Assemblyman Bill Dodd of Napa says it’s an important step to ensure California schools are safe, inside and out. He authored the bill.

After two young girls were killed after their mother crashed in foggy conditions ending up in the Russian River, one local lawmaker is trying to get tougher traffic safety. The Press Democrat reports west county Supervisor Efren Carrillo is trying to work with state highway and roadway officials for more traffic safety, a conversation that’s not new in the tiny coastal town of Jenner. They’ve been trying for some time to get Caltrans to add a flashing light to slow speeding. Carrillo says he’s been trying for a couple of years because of the exact spot where the latest crash happened. The two girls 4 year old Hailey and 6 year old Kaitlyn Markus were on their way to school Tuesday in Monte Rio when their mom slid on slick roads and plunged into the river. She got out of the truck, the girls didn’t make it.

15 bottles of laundry detergent stolen from a home in Massachusetts, but nothing else. New Bedford police say the resident called cops Saturday night after getting home to find someone had gone to the room in the home where the laundry detergent was stored. They say it was worth about $250. Police say it may seem like an odd thing to rip-off, but it can easily be sold for money.

More fresh produce will become available for those in California under the healthy food incentive program Market Match. The Gov. Jerry Brown approved using federal matching funds to expand the program Market Match thru the Nutrition Incentives Act. So it means $5 million in state money will match federal dollars as part of the USDA’s Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive program, that’s twice as much for state residents using the program.

Savings Bank of Mendocino County is shutting down one of its locations due to an uptick in online banking. A spokesperson for the bank says they’re closing the location near Lucky in the Pear Tree shopping center by year’s end. The spokesperson says their tracking of that location and the one on E. Perkins St. in Ukiah get the least amount of traffic. The main branch, about a half mile away on North School Street and another on Airport Park Boulevard will stay open. Bank account numbers will stay the same without any interruption to their banking services.

A trio of new candidates looking to be new Willits City Council members. Incumbents Bruce Burton, who’s also the mayor and Council Member Madge Strong have filed candidacy papers and the new candidates are Bill Barksdale, the Willits Police Chief Gerry Gonzalez and Saprina Rodriguez. Incumbent Holly Madrigal is not running again after 12 years.

Measure V, approved in June, regarding the so-called Hack and Squirt practice is in limbo. The Willits News reports there are hints of lawsuits and demonstrations, the upcoming recertification and the wording of the ordinance may mean it’s not strong enough to hold. The Mendocino Redwood Company wrote a letter to the county CEO Carmel Angelo which showed up on the company’s website which some nonprofits picked up on. It says timber operations are exempt from public nuisance determinations under the California Civil Code. Apparently Angelo turned over the letter to county counsel.

Two sisters from Jenner, ages 4 and 7 have been killed after their mom lost control of their truck and crashed into the Russian River. The Press Democrat reports mom was driving the two to school on Highway 1 out of town when she crashed down a 40-foot embankment south of town and they sank. The two girls are identified as 4 year old Hailey and 6 year old Kaitlyn Markus. Their mom broke the driver’s side window, swam up for help. A commercial truck driver jumped in, and emergency responders came to the scene, the girl’s bodies found in their submerged pickup. Apparently the road was thick with fog and the roads, wet and slippery.

Police have arrested a man in Covelo in connection to a carjacking last week. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Dept. reports getting a call to the carjacking last Wednesday. They were contacted by the Round Valley Tribal Housing Security personnel who were called by the victims. They said their car was taken by force. Deputies checked the area and saw the stolen vehicle speeding by so they took chase. They saw two people exit the truck and id’d them from previous contacts as John Hoaglen and Iran Hoaglen. Deputies demanded they stop but they didn’t, running to a nearby home. The two got away but deputies finally caught up to them and arrested them for Carjacking, Parole Violations and Conspiracy and booked without bail.

A cabin at a resort in Kelseyville has burned down. Firefighters went to the fire at the Edgewater Resort yesterday morning and contained the fire to a small area, the resort cabin, a garage and a wood pile as it spread towards vegetation. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office broadcast a public warning and got some people at the resort and along Soda Bay Road to evacuate. Firefighters from Kelseyville, Lakeport and Cal Fire had the fire out quickly. They say it looked to have started in or near the wood pile in a 30-foot space between the cabin and the garage.

A doggie mayor wins re-election. Yep, the four-legged leader of Cormorant Township in Minnesota won his third one year term. 9 year old Great Pyrenees Duke is the honorary mayor, who was overwhelmingly re-elected at the Cormorant Daze Festival. Those attending could pay a dollar and cast a vote. The town population is 20, about 180 miles northwest of Minneapolis.

A man in Pennsylvania has been arrested after he chopped down a tree that hit an apartment building, condemning it. Raymond Mazzarella thought the sap from the tree next door was ruining his car so he cut it down, causing it to crash into the building he owns. That damaged the building so much those living there are now homeless. He’s arrested for reckless endangerment and aggravated assault for supposedly getting into an argument with a neighbor too. Since the tree wasn’t on his property, he broke a town code.

Trash pickup and general cleanup at Ukiah High and Frank Zeek Elementary to rid the schools of their cockroach problem. Volunteers led by our own Mary Chadwick, working at the schools Saturday, picking up trash to help eradicate the long-running infestation of cockroaches. The school district Superintendent says they’re hiring two more custodians and are putting in 50 new trash cans too. The school district also says it’s open to ideas from the public to get rid of the pests.

Former Raiders and USC quarterback Todd Marinovich has been arrested after being found naked with methamphetamine in a stranger’s backyard. Irvine police say they got a call to a man without clothes wandering along a hiking trail. Then Marinovich was arrested on suspicion of trespassing; possession of a controlled substance; possession of drug paraphernalia; and possession of marijuana. It’s not the former baller’s first run in with the law. He admitted he was growing weed and had illegal prescription meds in the late 1990’s. And again in 2000 for heroin possession. And before this last arrest, there were arrests in 2005 and 2007.

A couple of men from Sonoma have been arrested for looting bulldozers that were being used by firefighters in the Clayton Fire. 22 others were also arrested for being in emergency evacuation zones during the fire. The pair arrested were seen looting Forest Service bulldozers parked at the Eastlake Landfill outside of Clearlake. Police in Clearlake say several items were reported stolen off the dozers, including an emergency fire shelter, a chainsaw and a handheld GPS device. Larry Hunter and Paul Albini arrested on suspicion of grand theft and possession of methamphetamine.

Survivors of the Clayton Fire are getting a helping hand. The Lake County Fire Protection District and Red Cross volunteers are giving out cleaning, hygiene and comfort items for the hardest-hit neighborhoods after the evacuation orders are totally lifted. Lake County Fire also set up distribution points starting yesterday from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Any Red Cross shelters in use providing those staying there with food, water, showers, health services, emotional support and other support resources. They have one on one meetings for survivors with caseworkers. For more info, (866) 272-2237

An early morning fire in Lucerne meant quick evacuations and 40 acres charred. The fire yesterday first reported on Highway 20 near Rosemont Drive around midnight. Northshore Fire brought in Cal Fire and other districts and deputies evacuated about 15 homes. Lake Co News reports the fire’s forward progress was stopped around 2am. P-G –and-E says about 1750 customers lost power but most had it back by 6am. Firefighters worked on hot spots until late in the morning.

One person has been confirmed dead after a fire at a Lakeport senior living facility. The two-story building on Bevins Street caught fire around 530pm Sunday. The Press Democrat reports many people in the building had medical issues and were difficult for fire fighters to get out, including some who had to be evacuated from second story windows down ladders. The woman who died had already been evacuated but for an unknown reason went back inside. Her body was found in an elevator. Fire officials say the fire started in a first floor apartment but was not considered suspicious.

Lake County’s Long-Term Recovery Task Force has a meeting set up to discuss the Clayton Fire. It’s Weds at 6:00 pm at the Lower Lake High School Gym. Lake County Administrative Officer, Carol Huchingson and 5th District Supervisor Rob Brown are co-coordinating the Clayton Fire Recovery effort for the County of Lake. Task Force meetings are initially scheduled bi-weekly and will continue during the Clayton Fire cleanup effort. The public is welcome to attend and hear recovery updates first-hand and ask questions. The meeting will also be broadcast live on the Lake County OES Facebook Page.

A new committee has formed opposing Mendocino’s Measure AF, also known as the Mendocino Heritage Act. Up for a vote on the ballot this November, the measure proposes the repeal of some sections of the County Code relating to Medical Marijuana cultivation, honing in on it as an agricultural product with state-given protections. The new “No on Measure AF Committee” calls it an attempt to circumvent County rule making and claims it would inundate the area with growers and make it harder for law and environmental officials to keep up.

A special meeting’s been called regarding the Clayton Fire and plans for the Dollar General Store in Middletown. The Middletown Area Town Hall or MATH is meeting tonight at 7 p.m. at the Middletown Community Center. They will take up discussion on those affected by the Clayton fire, which torched almost 4,000 acres and burned 300 structures. They’re also considering the proposed design for the facade for a new Dollar General store. The 9,100 square foot store is planned for 20900 State Highway 29. The Lake County Planning Commission said no to the project but there was an override by the Board of Supervisors.

The proposed excise tax in Humboldt County for medical marijuana farms is not smooth sailing. Several farmers against the tax model saying it’s too early and partial to larger farms. While others say they’re ready to pay taxes and bring in money for county schools, roads and mental health services. The Humboldt County Cannabis Chamber of Commerce says the way the tax measure has been drafted, quote, “misses the mark” on funding goals. The tax is expected to bring the city $7 million a year thru a $1 to up to $3 fixed-rate taxes for every square foot of medical cannabis cultivation.

A state fish and wildlife warden shot at as he tried stopping illegal “spotlight” hunting in Humboldt County. The officer not hit. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife officer tried stopping people in a car he caught using a spotlight to freeze an animal in its tracks before shooting. It happened on a road southeast of Fortuna and Eureka. The warden says those in the car fired at him when he tried to stop them so he chased them, calling for backup. The car crashed into a tree and the people inside jumped out and ran. The warden waited for help before pursuing the group. They’ve so far, not been found.

It helps to be famous, when Siri pronounces your name wrong. Case in point… Barbra Streisand called the head of Apple to ask that Siri learn to say her last name the right way. She says the second syllable is “Streisand with a soft S, like sand not the “Z” sound. (Like Lesley, not LEZZZZley ;)) Streisand gets the change with the next IOS update. For the rest of us, simply tell Siri, you’d like her to change the way she pronounces your name…

An old shipwreck’s been found off the Mendocino County Coast. The Press Democrat reports the Dorothy Wintermote was caught on video Saturday night with scientists watching live on a research vessel, plus they had an online audience around the world. The remotely operated vehicle was in the water for several hours circling around the old ship that sank after it hit a rock south of Point Arena in September 1938. The vessel was pinpointed in a sonar survey in 2007. It had a crew aboard of 29 headed from San Francisco to Portland, Oregon when it crashed.

A young alligator living in a San Francisco Bay Area Creek has been shot and killed. A California Department of Fish and Wildlife spokesman says the gator was probably someone’s pet and it got too big, so they set it free. The now 3-foot long alligator was killed after officials couldn’t get close enough to get it out of the area, popular with hikers and children in Fremont. They say they shot it for public safety. It was seen first last Monday by recreationalists, then officers found it Tuesday sunbathing on a rock.

A woman has been arrested for DUI after a crash near Forestville. Shundora Reynolds of Forestville busted for felony causing bodily injury while driving drunk for the crash last Wednesday night. Police say she hit another car at a complete stop and it pushed that car into another car. Others involved in the crash were complaining of pain.

A couple in Ukiah have been arrested after someone left a debit card in an ATM and spent more than $1,000 on the card. Ukiah Police report a 75 year old woman reported leaving the card in the machine and since that time more than $1,100 worth of items were purchased at local stores. Surveillance footage from the ATM showed the arrested man remove the card from the ATM. Then police saw footage from several local stores showing a couple making purchases with the card. Police recognized the man David Johnson Sr., of Ukiah, who’s on parole. The woman’s been id’d as Ashley Svendsen, who’s on probation. The two found in possession of stolen items and meth.

Pest management experts have been brought in to Ukiah High School to help get rid of the cockroach problem once and for all. Ukiah Unified School District officials had three scientists from the California Department of Pest Regulation and another scientist from the University of California Cooperative Extension. They checked out the campus at night and during the day and collected specimens, found hiding places and came up with eradication plans. Since work had already begun to rid the pests, it looks like there were just a few more areas where trash and food were not disposed of properly.

A woman in Lake County’s been arrested after the District Attorney’s Perjury Investigation Unit found she perjured herself on the witness stand. Merissa James was arrested last Wednesday after they received info about James submitting phony documents to the court. After her hearing she was arrested and charged with four felony counts including perjury, offering false evidence, preparing false documentary evidence, as well as a special allegation she committed the crimes while released on her own recognizance on another felony.

A man from Lower Lake who worked with the U.S. Olympic Fencing Team that won four medals in Rio de Janeiro lost his home and business in the Clayton Fire. Matthew Porter maintained the team’s equipment and came back from Rio to find his home and business in ruins. He and his wife had moved in June from Pacifica to the Copsey Creek subdivision in Lower Lake. The men’s and women’s foil teams won bronze medals. And 2 of the men won silver’s in individual competition. As of last night, the fire had burned 4,000 acres, destroyed 300 structures and damaged 28. It’s 95% contained.

A local group is looking for volunteers to help with cleanup after the Clayton Fire. North Coast Opportunities (NCO) has opened a temporary volunteer recruitment center. Last week NCO had more than 100 people who had registered as volunteers. Volunteers get daily emails with a list of volunteering opportunities which can include distributing food, clothing and toiletries, construction and sorting donations. They also need spiritual counselors. For more info, NCO’s volunteer hotline is (707) 467-3236.

The Superintendent of Konocti Unified School District says school is back in session. The announcement last Thursday that classes are starting again today after several schools closed due to the Clayton Fire. Burns Valley Elementary, East Lake Elementary, Pomo Elementary and the Konocti Education Center (including the School for the Arts and Health Magnet School) will re-open Monday. But schools in the Lower Lake area will reopen as soon as it’s determined to be safe.





































The Clayton Fire is now 60 percent contained with firefighters holding it at just under 4,000 acres and full containment expected Sunday. Damage Assessment teams now say the fire has destroyed 300 structures; including 190 single-family homes, 8 commercial structures, and 102 other structures such as sheds and smaller. 316 structures are still threatened.

Evacuations remain in effect for areas within the fire perimeter served by Morgan Valley Road. Main Street is still closed east of the Highway 29 and Highway 53 junction and Lake Street is closed south of Dam Road.

A Mandatory Boil Water Order is in effect for the Lower Lake County Water District. The District is struggling after the Clayton Fire with their office still without power and under evacuation. The Sheriff says the Water District folks have been working under extraordinary conditions to try to reestablish water levels but he reminds you it takes a long time to recover a public water system after such a devastating fire, as was experienced last year after the Valley Fire. They ask that you do the following: when you return home, bring bottled water so if your service is interrupted you’ll have drinking water; inspect your home to make sure there are no open hose bibs or broken lines and use water sparingly until the levels at restored, including not hosing down your house or car. And if you don’t have any water service at all, call them.

Superintendent of Konocti Unified School District Donna Becnel has announced the following schools will be open on Monday, Aug. 22: Burns Valley Elementary, East Lake Elementary, Pomo Elementary and the Konocti Education Center (including the School for the Arts and Health Magnet School). District Staff are currently cleaning schools in the Lower Lake area in anticipation of reopening. Schools in the Lower Lake area will reopen as soon as we can assure a safe learning environment for our students and staff.

The Lake County District Attorney’s Victim Witness division is offering assistance to victims of the Clayton Fire in filling out applications for the California Victim Compensation Program. If approved, applicants will be eligible for money to help cover mental health counseling. Victim Witness Advocates will be at the Twin Pines Casino shelter today, Friday, August 19th, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and again on Monday, August 22nd, from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. to help residents fill out the applications.

The first in what could be a series of pledged perjury crackdown charges has been filed. The Lake County District Attorney’s new Perjury Investigation Unit has had Merissa L. James arrested for submitting fraudulent documents to the Probation Department earlier this year. She is charged with four felony counts including Perjury, Offering False Evidence, Preparing False Documentary Evidence, as well as a special allegation that she committed these new crimes while released on her own recognizance during the pendency of a felony charge. She was facing 30 days for that offense but could now face up to six years for the perjury.

A Ukiah restaurant owner has reportedly pleaded guilty to obstructing federal tax laws and harboring and underpaying people illegal workers. The U.S. Department of Justice says Yaowapha Ritdet admitted in federal court that she knowingly hired Thai nationals who were in the country illegally to work at her two restaurants, Ruen Tong Thai Cuisine and Walter Café. The Press Democrat reports she also admitted to underpaying the employees and telling them not to tell anyone about their immigration status. And she pleaded guilty to filing false income tax returns from 2007 through 2011. She could face more than a decade in prison and fines of more than $500,000 when she is sentenced.

Mendocino County’s SWAT Team has helped with a 17-hour armed stand-off in Humboldt County. Sheriff Tom Allman says their SWAT team and its armored BearCat rescue vehicle were requested by the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office and state Office of Emergency Services because Humboldt doesn’t have an armored vehicle like the BearCat. The Sheriff tells the Ukiah Daily Journal they used it to extract eight people from an apartment complex in McKinleyville Wednesday after suspect David Fulton had fired shots at the apartment manager’s office after his car was towed from the parking lot and then barricaded himself inside with his girlfriend. Negotiations went into Thursday morning and after Fulton’s girlfriend voluntarily came out of the apartment Fulton engaged in a series of shootouts with police and was killed. No police officers were hurt.

A lot of forward progress on the Clayton Fire. The fire holding at just under 4,000 acres. Nearly 270 structures destroyed, 175 are homes. 8 Commercial structures and 85 others like sheds or outbuildings. Damage inspection teams are still out surveying the area. That means the number of structures damaged or destroyed may rise. The Evacuation Order for the area accessed by Spruce Grove Road was lifted yesterday afternoon. 316 structures are still threatened.

The Middletown Rancheria Tribal Council is cancelling an event at the Twin Pine Casino & Hotel due to the Clayton Fire. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy was supposed to perform tomorrow night, but evacuees and fire survivors are at the hotel with help from the Red Cross. The Tribe has been closely involved in disaster relief. The Tribal Council Chair for the Middletown Rancheria says it was an easy and heartfelt decision that the community always comes first. The tribe saying they weren’t willing to displace community members to host a concert. Ticketholders can visit for more information on reimbursement.

Mendocino Cannabis Resource(MCR) working with Green Rush Consulting (GRC) has a half day workshop coming up for small cannabis based businesses in Northern California. They say it’s to educate and empower small business owners. So a week from Wednesday, August 31st from 12:00 – 5:00 pm at Little Lake Grange in Willits. They will cover topics like: business plan development, operations, branding and marketing and the state license application process.

The new Ukiah courthouse is on hold. The reasons, financial. A projected shortfall of money for courthouse construction projects. So the Judicial Council of California (JCC) Court Facilities Advisory Committee (CFAC) voted for nearly 2 dozen judicial branch courthouse construction projects, including the new Ukiah Courthouse being grouped in categories to see if any can proceed. They’re noted in 4 categories, "Currently Under Construction", "Acquisitions", "Ongoing Design Work", and "2016/17 Construction Awards". Ukiah is in the acquisition phase, then hold. A new Lakeport courthouse has a recommended restart after budget review.

A man in Fort Bragg has been arrested after police get a call to a campsite where the woman claimed she was kidnapped. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office got a call Monday to the 17900 block of Highway 1. The victim ran from the man and started hitchhiking. A California State Parks Ranger responded and contacted the victim and suspect, later identified as Randall Hagaman. Police say they came to find the victim was not kidnapped, but there was an argument with the suspect who the woman had a restraining order against. He was arrested for the violation of the restraining order and for having a firearm in his vehicle. He was held in the Mendocino County Jail with bail set at $25,000.00

A man recovering from a stabbing during a domestic dispute in Potter Valley. Sheriff’s Deputies told the victim walked to another house. They spoke to the guy who said he had a fight with his wife. They say he was bleeding from what looked like a stab wound to his left shoulder blade area. He says while arguing with his wife, he was stabbed and that she was holding their small child. He was taken to the hospital for treatment. The wife arrested for domestic violence and assault with a deadly weapon. Marin and Mendocino County Child Protective Services responded to care for their young child.

A man in Talmage has been arrested after police get a call about a burglary. Police say they got a hold of a video surveillance of the suspect in action. Jarrett Williams already had an arrest warrant in Mendocino County for burglary and they say he was a suspect in multiple burglaries in the City of Ukiah. Williams was arrested near Finley for the outstanding burglary warrant. Lake County Deputies also arrested him for burglaries in Lake County. Items in his car were linked to many area burglaries. Charges include several counts of residential burglary, commercial burglary, grand theft auto, and possession of stolen property.

Donations being accepted by Redwood Credit Union for those affected by the Clayton Fire. Secure donations can be made online at or any North Bay and San Francisco location. The money goes directly to victims. The credit union also reminding the public they have special loan and financial assistance programs for anyone directly impacted by the fires.

The man from Clearlake accused of starting the Clayton fire has been formally charged. Damin Pashilk has been charged with 15 felony counts of arson, including the Clayton fire and 11 other fires cops say he set since July last year. The Clayton fire is the biggest one. It started last Saturday, and burned 4,000 acres, decimating the Lower Lake area. He has not entered a plea and is held in the Lake County Jail on $5 million bail.

A new gym coming to Ukiah. The Planning Commission says yes to Crossfit Firefly which takes over the space that used to house a nail salon. The staff report put together for last week’s meeting shows the owners are going to put in another floor and 5,750 square feet. They will plant trees, pave the parking lot, install a new building façade, landscaping and sidewalk improvements.

Habitat for Humanity Lake County loses their office in the Clayton Fire but says they’ll be back up and running soon. They need to get a new office space, and contributions. Donations being accepted thru Paypal by visiting or contact Savings Bank of Mendocino at (707) 462-6613.

Beefed up police patrols in the Clayton fire area while residents are evacuated, and there’s been some arrests. The Sheriff Brian Martin declared a local emergency Sunday and asked for backup from regional departments. Saturation patrols started quickly. The same goes for the city of Clearlake. They also asked for more help and local agencies responded to assist. Lakeport Police, the California Highway Patrol, the sheriff’s office, State Parks and Lake County District Attorney’s Office all sent personnel for 24/7 patrols in the part of the Avenues section ordered to evacuate.

The man from Clearlake arrested for several fires and suspected of starting the Clayton fire is being investigated as a serial arsonist. Cal Fire investigating Damon Pashilk saying he intentionally set the Clayton fire, on the edge of a rural road outside Lower Lake off Highway 29. The fire blew up to 1,400 acres after starting Saturday in dry conditions. By Sunday it was double the size and had destroyed about 175 homes and businesses. Police say Pashilk served time in state prison on drug possession and firearms charges and for several other. He also worked on an inmate fire crew in Trinity County. He’s been in and out of jail for years. He’s held in the Lake County Jail on $5 million bail.

The Clayton fire is holding at 4,000 acres, but is now 35% contained. Full containment is expected this Sunday, August 21st. Fire crews got a lot closer to surrounding the fire yesterday and built more control lines. Cal fire still has destroyed structures holding at 175 and another 380 threatened. They say the numbers may change. There was a mandatory evacuation order lifted yesterday for neighborhoods east of State Highway 53 from Polk Avenue, south to Cache Creek. It’s an area referred to as the "Avenues”.

Mandatory evacuations still in place for Clayton Creek Road, all of Morgan Valley Road, North Spruce Grove Road to Jerusalem Grade. The three evacuation centers are still open at Kelseyville High School, the Seventh Day Adventist Church and Twin Pines Casino.

The city of Ukiah has a few new nominations for the Landmark Tree Program. The Gingko in the 300 block of North Spring Street, a Coast Redwood and a Dawn Redwood all nominated by the program’s Tree Advisory Group. The Gingko tree represented as the tallest in Ukiah. The resident of the home where it stands says she hopes status as a Landmark Tree might help protect it after she doesn’t live there anymore. The three trees all about 50 years old.

Names of those killed in a head on crash near Ukiah last weekend have been released. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reports 84 year old Paul Vicente of Oakland and 25 year old Marketa O’Conner of St. Petersburg, Fla. were killed on Highway 101 Sunday near Nelson Ranch Road. Passengers in the car were pulled and taken to hospitals.

Another fire in Lake County, but more than 70 firefighters rushed to the scene and doused it. The fire west of North Lakeport, quickly grew to 10 acres and destroyed a building and spread to dry grassland. The fire started around 12:40 p.m. yesterday with quick response from firefighters already set up at the Lakeport fairgrounds for the Clayton fire. They say when they arrived flames were destroying what looked to be a travel trailer attached to a small building.

No school for the rest of the week in the Konocti Unified School District. School officials working on a new calendar due to the Clayton fire. At community meetings Monday, the Lake County Superintendent of Schools was there to deliver updates saying the safety of students, teachers and staff were the priority, so schools would stay closed because of how close the fire was burning actively around Lower Lake.

The California Earthquake Authority has new options so the insurance isn’t so costly. The Press Democrat reports the authority’s CEO Glenn Pomeroy in Santa Rosa talking to realtors about policies that can be better suited to individual consumers. He says residents should rethink earthquake insurance. The earthquake authority partners with about 80 percent of the state’s home insurance companies for quake coverage in California. He says nine out of 10 state homeowners don’t have earthquake insurance, as an example the magnitude 6.7 Northridge quake in 1994 caused $20 billion in damage to residential structures and he says scientists predict a 99 percent chance a quake of 6.7 or greater will happen somewhere in California in the next 30 years.

Of all who’ve tried to get onto the Nov. ballot, only incumbent Ukiah City Council members qualified. The Ukiah City Clerk Kristine Lawler says as of last Friday’s 5 p.m. deadline only Council member Doug Crane and Mayor Steve Scalmanini filed the proper paperwork. Another man, Mark Hilliker got the paperwork, but didn’t get enough nominating signatures from city residents.

Multiple Lucky Supermarkets are raising money for the American Red Cross, for fire relief in Lake County. The store in Ukiah on E. Perkins St., shoppers can donate any amount when they checkout. They will then see their donation printed on the receipt, as a record for their tax deductible donation. The fundraising drive continues until further notice.

A county building has flooded so an urgent emergency declaration made over the weekend. The Yokayo Center had as much as 2 inches of standing water flooding the building so there could be longer waits than usual. The eligibility wing of the building where they have interview rooms, was affected. The executive office says about 9,000 square-feet inside the building was flooded, possibly during a remodeling project. Flooring, walls and computer equipment were damaged.

Two people have been killed in a head-on crash near Ukiah. The CHP reports it happened on the 101, on the south side past Nelson Ranch Road. The highway was blocked for a time, and passengers in the cars were pulled out by rescuers.

4,000 acres have been charred by the Clayton Fire in Lower Lake. Cal Fire reports 175 structures have been destroyed and 1,500 more are threatened. Mendocino County has sent resources to help. The Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman says they also sent a couple of animal control officers to help with displaced dogs, cats and horses. The sheriff says like in the Valley fire last summer, they’ll help with patrols and arrest looters at evacuated homes if need be. The Mendocino County Animal Shelter is also taking donations for affected Lake County pets which can be dropped off at the Ukiah shelter on Plant Road.

St. Helena Hospital Clear Lake is still evacuated due to the Clayton fire. There is some staff at the hospital to make sure it is secure and ready for patients to come back. But they can’t reopen until getting clearance from the fire department and California Department of Public Health. All Lake County clinics, except Konocti Wellness Center in Lower Lake will be open at 8:00 am this morning to help community members, including Clayton Creek Fire evacuees.

The Lake County Wildfire Relief Fund has been launched again. North Coast Opportunities (NCO) and MendoLake Credit Union re-opened the fund for those being affected by the Clayton Fire. The fire’s burned 175 structures and thousands are under mandatory evacuation orders. The fund accepting monetary donations at all Mendo Lake Credit Union and Savings Bank of Mendocino County branches. Or checks can be mailed to North Coast Opportunities at 413 N. State Street, Ukiah CA 95482. The checks should be made out to NCO/Wildfire Relief, with “Clayton Fire” noted in the memo. You can find out more at our Facebook page or website:

(Also at NCO’s front page: More details about how to apply to the fund will be forthcoming.)

North Coast Opportunity needs volunteers, visit their website at and click the “Volunteer” tab. Folks without internet service can call 707-462-3236. If you want to donate household goods or clothes, they ask that you wait until the needs of fire victims are clearly known.

Power and internet are out besides closed roads and schools, and even one hospital. Since the fire started Saturday, Pacific Gas and Electric Co. had to shut down power for as many as 8,300 customers, then slowly turning the lines back on incrementally as Cal Fire gives the utility the all-clear sign. The power lines were de-energized so fire crews could go into burn areas in a safer manner, because there were probably downed power lines. No damage estimate from PG&E crews as of yesterday.

One major problem for those in the fire zone was a lack of internet connectivity. Residents in Lake County were asking officials to make it a top priority. Mediacom, which services customers in Lake County said the area damaged by the fire hit one of their main fiber optic cables, providing service to Twin Lakes, Hidden Valley, Middletown, Lower Lake, Loch Lomond, Cobb, Kelseyville, Finley and Lakeport. They were hoping to have service restored late last night. For more info on connectivity, customers can call 855-633-6326.

The 3 main shelters are still at:

• Kelseyville High School, 5480 Main St., Kelseyville;

• Seventh Day Adventist Church, 3500 Hill Rd. E., Lakeport; and

• Twin Pine Casino, 22223 Highway 29, Middletown.

Animals can be taken to either the old SPCA facility at 7025 Hwy. 29 in Kelseyville, or the Lake County Animal Shelter, 4945 Helbush Drive in Lakeport. Those with barn animals can go to Owen Ranch in Hidden Valley Lake or the Coal Creek Equestrian Center in Kelseyville.


We still have mandatory evacuations in place for Clayton Creek Road, Morgan Valley Road, North Spruce Grove Road to Jerusalem Grade Road and Highway 53 at the Highway 29 junction north to Highway 20. Homes along Jerusalem Grade Road were under advisory evacuation Monday afternoon.

Road Closures

Clayton Creek Road at Highway 29, all of Morgan Valley Road to the Napa County line and Highway 53 from Highway 29 to Highway 20 — except for evacuations — remain closed to traffic.

Schools closed thru Friday include Burns Valley, East Lake, Lower Lake and Pomo elementary schools, Lower Lake High School, Lewis Center, Blue Heron School, Carlé High School, Highlands Academy, Konocti Education Center and Clearlake Creativity School.

The fire’s gutted one winery in Lower Lake. Terrill Cellars’ Tuscan Village Winery was left in a pile of ash except for part of the front of the building. Other wineries had to close down during evacuations. Six Sigma Ranch and Winery was evacuated Sunday, but allowed to return yesterday. The Press Democrat reports the fire’s missed areas of Lake County’s wine industry. The paper reports there’s about 40 wineries in the county and almost 9,500 acres of vineyards. The wine industry remained mostly intact as they prepare for harvest.

Record heat and the 5 year historic drought bringing more and more fires to Calif. Firefighters had responded to about 3,900 fires as of last Saturday, about 20% more fires and 30% more acreage than the last five years. Cal Fire had put together a fire threat map 10 years ago showing most of Lake County was at high or very high risk of wildfire. Last summer the Rocky, Valley and Jerusalem fires blackened more than 170,000 acres in the county. The fires charring areas that hadn’t burned in 5 decades or more. The Clayton fire chomping thru some terrain that’s not burned since the 1950s. A study by a UC Berkeley professor put out this past May showed Western wildfires are getting bigger and are more frequent and damaging since the 1980s.

A man has been arrested in connection to the Clayton Fire. Cal Fire says they arrested 40 year old Damin Pashilk for 17 counts of arson. Sheriff Brian Martin… SOT

The fire has caused more than $10 million in damage so far and is still just 5% contained. California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokesman Daniel Berlant SOT

No injuries have been reported, but Berlant says families have lost pets as the fire swept into Lower Lake this weekend.

The #LakeCountyRising fundraising campaign announced today that it is accepting donations to support survivors of the Clayton Fire. Lake County’s wine industry is once again coming together to support yet another wildfire in Lake County, this time in the small community of Lower Lake.

The Clayton Fire, which started Saturday evening, is estimated to have burned 4,000 acres and destroyed 175 structures, with 5% containment on Mondayafternoon, according to the CAL FIRE incident update.

#LakeCountyRising was established in September 2015 in the wake of the Valley Fire, which burned 76,000 acres, destroyed 1,300 homes and took four lives. Once again, thousands of Lake County residents are displaced from their homes by the wildfires. Many have been separated from pets and loved ones and are waiting to learn the fate of their homes and businesses.

The #LakeCountyRising fund has again mobilized. To donate, visit: To donate by check, send your check made payable to Lake County Wine Alliance, memo “Lake County Rising Fire Relief Fund,” to:

Lake County Wine Alliance
P.O. Box 530
Kelseyville, CA 95451

Donors who have contributed to this fund in the past are encouraged to continue their support by donating again.


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