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FATAL ID JKB 3/20/12

  • AUTHORITIES HAVE RELEASED THE NAME OF A FORT BRAGG WOMAN WHO WAS KILLED IN A SINGLE VEHICLE ACCIDENT ON HIGHWAY 20 FRIDAY MORNING.

ACCORDING TO THE CHP, 50 YEAR OLD SHERI RENTERIA LOST CONTROL OF HER CAR WHILE TRYING TO PASS A SLOWER VEHICLE AS SHE WAS TRAVELING EASTBOUND AT AROUND 10:25 AM. INVESTIGATORS SAY THE PASSING ATTEMPT WAS MADE ACROSS A DOUBLE YELLOW CENTER DIVIDE AND THAT RENTERIAS CAR LOST TRACTION DUE TO THE WET ROADWAY CONDITIONS. HER CAR SPUN CLOCKWISE, CROSSED THE EASTBOUND LANE COLLIDED WITH A MILE POST MARKER AND THEN CRASHED INTO A REDWOOD TREE. RENTERIA DIED AT THE SCENE. SHE WAS THE SOLE OCCUPANT OF THE VEHICLE. THE DRIVER OF THE VEHICLE SHE PASSED WAS NOT INJURED.

NO MOTIVE YET IN KILLING JKB 3/20/12

  • AUTHORITIES SAY THEY ARE STILL TRYING TO DETERMINE A MOTIVE IN THE MURDER OF AN ELDERLY WILLITS MAN WHO WAS ALLEGEDLY KILLED BY HIS GRANDSON LATE SATURDAY NIGHT.

22 YEAR OLD KENNETH WILKINSON HAD BEEN ACTING AS THE LIVE IN CARE TAKER FOR 84 YEAR OLD RICHARD WILKINSON. FAMILY MEMBERS CALLED POLICE AT AROUND 11 PM SATURDAY, REPORTING THAT AN ALTERCATION HAD TAKEN PLACE BETWEEN THE TWO MEN AND THAT THE ELDERLY MAN WAS MISSING. POLICE REPORTED FINDING EVIDENCE OF A CRIME AT THE HOME, BUT DID NOT ELABORATE. RICHARD WILKINSONS BODY WAS FOUND A FEW HOURS LATER 150 FEET DOWN THE SIDE OF A STEEP EMBANKMENT OFF MARIPOSA CREEK ROAD ABOUT 5 MILES FROM THE HOME. KENNETH WILKINSON WAS ARRESTED ON CHARGES OF MURDER AND BOOKED INTO THE COUNTY JAIL. ANYONE WITH INFORMATION ABOUT THIS CRIME IS ASKED TO CONTACT THE MENDOCINO COUNTY SHERIFFS DEPARTMENT.

8 YEAR OLD KILLED BY FALLING TREE JKB 3/20/12

  • AN 8 YEAR OLD CALAVERAS COUNTY GIRL WAS KILLED WHEN A 100 FOOT TALL STORM WEAKENED FIR TREE FELL AND CRASHED THROUGH HER BEDROOM EARLY SUNDAY MORNING.

HALEY VERZANI OF ARNOLD WAS ASLEEP IN HER BED WHEN THE TREE, ESTIMATED TO BE THREE FEET IN DIAMETER CRASHED INTO HER HOME. IT TOOK FIREFIGHTERS 20 MINUTES TO GET TO THE SCENE BECAUSE THEY HAD TO MAKE THEIR WAY THROUGH 6 INCHES OF UNPLOWED SNOW. NO OTHER OCCUPANTS OF THE HOME WERE INJURED.

TWO KILLED, ONE INJURED IN SKI ACCIDENTS JKB 3/20/12

  • TWO PEOPLE WERE KILLED AND A THIRD WAS INJURED IN SEPARATE SKI ACCIDENTS ON CALIFORNIA SLOPES OVER THE WEEKEND.

A 30 YEAR OLD SNOWBOARDER WAS KILLED SUNDAY AFTER FALLING HEAD FIRST IN AN OPEN SKI AREA AT CHINA PEAK MOUNTAIN RESORT. A 54 YEAR OLD GOLD RIVER MAN DIED AFTER HE SKIED INTO A HOLE CREATED BY AN UNDERFLOW OF WATER AT THE SIERRA-AT-TAHOE RESORT ON SATURDAY. A SKIER AT KIRKWOOD MOUNTAIN RESORT WAS TAKEN TO A HOSPITAL AFTER BEING INJURED IN A SMALL AVALANCHE. IT WAS REPORTED THAT MORE THAN 5 FEET OF SNOW FELL IN THE SIERRA NATIONAL FOREST OVER THE WEEKEND.

SEX ABUSE TO GO TO TRIAL JKB 3/20/12

  • A LAKE COUNTY JUDGE HAS RULED THAT AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL GIRL AND HER LEGAL GAURDIANS LAWSUIT AGAINST THE MIDDLETOWN UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT ALLEGING THAT SHE WAS ABUSED BY DOZENS OF STUDENTS TWO YEARS AGO, WILL GO TO TRIAL.

THE LAWSUIT CLAIMS THE GIRL WAS SEXUALLY ASSAULTED BY AS MANY AS 50 STUDENTS WHILE ATTENDING MINNIE CANNON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL WHEN SHE WAS SIX YEARS OLD. THE SUIT ALSO ALLEGES THE SCHOOL DISTRICT AND STAFF MEMBERS WERE NEGLIGENT IN SUPERVISING ITS STUDENTS. 50 UNNAMED DISTRICT EMPLOYEES ARE LISTED AS DEFENDANTS. SCHOOL OFFICIALS HAVE DENIED THE ALLEGATIONS. BOTH SIDES HAD AGREED TO MEDIATION, BUT JUDGE DAVID HERRICK SCHEDULED THE CASE FOR TRAIL BEGINNING DECEMBER 5TH DURING A CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE LAST MONTH.

MOTHER SENTENCED IN INFANT DEATH JKB 3/20/12

  • A HUMBOLDT COUNTY WOMAN WHO PLEADED GUILTY TO A CHARGE OF VOLUNTARY MANSLAUGHTER IN THE DEATH OF HER INFANT SON WHO DIED AFTER DRINKING METHAMPHETAMINE CONTAMINATED BREAST MILK, WAS SENTENCED TO 6 YEARS IN STATE PRISON YESTERDAY.

27 YEAR OLD MAGGIE WORTMAN HAD CONSIDERED WITHDRAWING HER PLEA, BECAUSE SHE WAS UNDER THE IMPRESSION FROM HER ATTORNEY THAT SHE COULD HAVE RECEIVED PROBATION. THAT TURNED OUT NOT TO BE THE CASE WHEN IT WAS LEARNED THAT WORTMAN WAS ALREADY ON FELONY PROBATION FOR A DRUG CONVICTION AT THE TIME OF HER ARREST IN THE DEATH OF HER 6 WEEK OLD SON, MICHAEL ACOSTA III. WORTMAN ADMITTED TO SMOKING METH PRIOR TO FEEDING HER SON, WHO DIED OF ACUTE METHAMPHETAMINE TOXICITY. SHE AGREED TO LEAVE IN PLEA IN PLACE YESTERDAY, MAKING HER THE STATES FIRST VOLUNTARY MANSLAUGHTER CASE WHERE A WOMAN WAS CONVICTED OF PASSING A LETHAL DOSE OF METHAMPHETAMINE TO HER CHILD THROUGH BREAST MILK.

TSUNAMI TEST JKB 3/20/12

  • A WEEK FROM TOMORROW, THE COUNTIES OF MENDOCINO, HUMBOLDT AND DEL NORTE IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE OFFICE OF EMERGENCY SERVICES, THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AND THE CALIFORNIA EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY WILL CONDUCT A TSUNAMI WARNING SYSTEM TEST.

THE TEST WILL TAKE PLACE BETWEEN 11 AM AND NOON. WE OF COURSE, WILL BE PARTICIPATING IN THAT TEST. ALERT TONES FOLLOWED BY A VOICE ANNOUNCING THE TEST WILL BE BROADCAST. IF YOU ARE WATCHING TELEVISION, YOU WILL SEE A CRAWLER AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SCREEN INDICATING THAT A TSUNAMI WARNING HAS BEEN ISSUED AND HEAR A VOICE INDICATING THAT IT IS ONLY A TEST. LAST YEARS ANNUAL TEST WAS CANCELED DUE TO THE DEVASTATING EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI THAT STRUCK JAPAN. AT THEIR MEETING LAST WEEK THE MENDOCINO COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS PROCLAIMED THE WEEK OF MARCH 25TH THROUGH THE 31ST AS TSUNAMI PREPAREDNESS WEEK.

MLT PURCHASES NOYO RIVER REDWOOD PROPERTY JKB 3/20/12

  • THE MENDOCINO LAND TRUST HAS ANNOUNCED THAT THEY HAVE CLOSED ESCROW ON 426 ACRES OF NOYO RIVER REDWOODS PROPERTY FROM THE SAVE THE REDWOODS LEAGUE, AT A COST OF $4 MILLION DOLLARS.

THE PURCHASE WAS MADE POSSIBLE BY A $4 MILLION GRANT TO THE LAND TRUST BY THE CALIFORNIA WILDLIFE CONSERVATION BOARD, WHICH WAS APPROVED JUST LAST MONTH. THE PROPERTY, LOCATED AT THE HEADWATERS OF THE NOYO ROVER, CONTAINS APPROXIMATELY 128 ACRES OF OLD GROWTH FOREST.

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