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FORMER POLICE OFFICER ARRESTED IN POT BUST JH 07/23/13

A FORMER LAKEPORT POLICE OFFICER WAS ARRESTED WHEN LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENTS FROM BOTH LAKE AND MENDOCINO COUNTY DESCENDED UPON REFLECTIONS OF AVALON, A UKIAH MEDICAL MARIJUANA DISPENSARY.

AUTHORITIES RAIDED THE BUSINESS FRIDAY MORNING, TAKING INTO CUSTODY THE OWNER, 60 YEAR OLD RICHARD ERICKSON AND AT LEAST TWO OTHER PEOPLE WHO SHOWED UP AT THE BUSINESS, ALLEGEDLY TO SELL MARIJUANA. AGENTS SEIZED ABOUT 25 POUNDS OF PROCESSED POT, ALONG WITH AN UNKNOWN NUMBER OF GROWING PLANTS, CASH AND GUNS. ERICKSON WAS AN 11 YEAR VETERAN OF THE LAKEPORT POLICE DEPARTMENT WHEN HE WAS TERMINATED IN 2006, THE SAME YEAR HE WAS CHARGED WITH MISAPPROPRIATING GOVERNMENT FUNDS FOR ALLEGEDLY USING POLICE DEPARTMENT EQUIPMENT AND TIME FOR PERSONAL REASONS, INCLUDING AN AFFAIR WITH AN 18 YEAR OLD. ERICKSON WAS ACQUITTED OF THOSE CHARGES IN 2007. HE NOW FACES CHARGES OF SUSPICION OF CULTIVATING AND POSSESSING MARIJUANA FOR SALE, MANUFACTURING A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE AND RECEIVING STOLEN PROPERTY.

BOY SCOUT LEADER KILLED IN CRASH IDENTIFIED JH 07/23/13

AUTHORITIES HAVE RELEASED THE NAME OF THE BOY SCOUT LEADER KILLED IN A FIVE VEHICLE CRASH ON HIGHWAY 20 ON SUNDAY.

55-YEAR-OLD ROBERT WAYNE GARRISON OF NEWCASTLE DIED IN THE ACCIDENT THAT OCCURRED JUST AFTER 11 AM NEAR POTTER VALLEY.

GARRISONS 15 YEAR OLD SON, SEAN, WAS FLOWN TO CHILDRENS HOSPITAL IN OAKLAND, AND 17 YEAR OLD MASON SHIELDS OF NEWCASTLE WAS FLOWN TO SANTA ROSA MEMORIAL HOSPITAL WITH MAJOR INJURIES. ACCORDING TO AUTHORITIES, BOTH BOYS WERE REPORTED IN CRITICAL CONDITION ON MONDAY. THREE OTHER SCOUTS IN THE VEHICLE WERE ALSO INJURED AND SENT TO LOCAL HOSPITALS. THE ACCIDENT OCCURRED WHEN 73-YEAR-OLD EUGENE GALLETTI OF REDWOOD VALLEY FAILED TO STOP FOR OTHER DRIVERS ABOUT TO TURN OFF THE HIGHWAY. AN INITIAL COLLISION BETWEEN THREE VEHICLES LANDED GALLETTIS VEHICLE IN ONCOMING TRAFFIC WHERE IT COLLIDED HEAD ON WITH GARRISONS VAN OF SCOUTS, WHICH THEN SPUN INTO THE PATH OF ANOTHER VEHICLE WHERE IT WAS HIT AGAIN. A TOTAL OF 14 PEOPLE WERE RIDING IN THE FIVE VEHICLES INVOLVED. EXCEPT FOR THE VAN OF SCOUTS, THE OTHER DRIVERS AND PASSENGERS ONLY SUFFERED MINOR INJURIES OR WERE UNINJURED.

WEST NILE VIRUS FOUND IN MENDOCINO COUNTY JH 07/23/13

MENDOCINO COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICES RECEIVED REPORT OF THE FIRST POSITIVE CASE OF WEST NILE VIRUS IN MENDOCINO COUNTY THIS YEAR.

A DEAD BIRD TESTED POSITIVE FOR THE VIRUS ON JULY 11TH. WEST NILE VIRUS IS TRANSMITTED TO HUMANS AND ANIMALS THROUGH A MOSQUITO BITE, AND MOSQUITOES BECOME INFECTED WHEN THEY FEED ON DEAD BIRDS. AVOID BITES BY NOT SPENDING TIME OUTSIDE AT DUSK AND DAWN, WHEN MOSQUITOES ARE MOST ACTIVE. USE AN INSECT REPELLANT WHEN POSSIBLE. AND ELIMINATE ALL SOURCES OF STANDING WATER AROUND YOUR HOME. TO REPORT A DEAD BIRD, CALL THE CALIFORNIA WEST NILE VIRUS DIVISION AT 877-968-2473.

WOMAN CRASHES INTO WATER COMPANY TRUCKS, GETS DUI JH 07/23/13

AN UPPER LAKE WOMAN WAS INJURED EARLY SUNDAY MORNING WHEN SHE CRASHED INTO TWO CLEARLAKE OAKS WATER DISTRICT TRUCKS.

30-YEAR-OLD MARIA VEGA FIGUEROA WAS DRIVING EASTBOUND ON HIGHWAY 20 WHEN SHE FAILED TO NEGOTIATE A CURVE IN THE ROAD. HER VEHICLE WENT OFF THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE ROAD, CRASHING THROUGH A FENCE INTO THE CLEARLAKE OAKS COUNTY WATER DISTRICT YARD WHERE SHE HIT TWO TRUCKS PARKED THERE. FIGUEROA WAS ARRESTED ON SUSPICION OF DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE AND THEN FLOWN TO UC DAVIS MEDICAL CENTER WITH MODERATE INJURIES.

TEEN HIT BY CAR, FLOWN TO TRAUMA CENTER JH 07/23/13

A COBB TEENAGER WAS FLOWN TO AN OUT OF THE AREA TRAUMA CENTER SATURDAY, AFTER BEING HIT BY A CAR.

18 YEAR OLD TRISTEN NICHOLAS WINKLE OF ANGWIN WAS DRIVING NORTH ON BOTTLEROCK ROAD, WHEN FOR REASONS THE CHP STILL HAVENT BEEN ABLE TO DETERMINE, HE HIT 14 YEAR OLD HUNTER TOLES. ACCORDING TO CHP, TOLES SUFFERED MODERATE INJURY AND WAS FLOWN TO UC DAVIS MEDICAL CENTER. THE COLLISION IS CURRENTLY UNDER INVESTIGATION.

CHARGES FILED AGAINST LAKE COUNTY MEN FOR CONSPIRACY AND USE OF A MINOR IN A DRUG OPERATION JH 07/23/13

FOLLOWING A FEDERAL INVESTIGATION THAT BEGAN IN 2012, FEDERAL CHARGES WERE FILED AGAINST TWO LAKE COUNTY MEN ON MONDAY.

30 YEAR OLD RYAN BALLETTO OF LAKEPORT AND 25 YEAR OLD PATRICK STEVEN PEARMAIN OF CLEARLAKE ARE CHARGED WITH CONSPIRACY TO MANUFACTURE AND DISTRIBUTE MORE THAN 1,000 MARIJUANA PLANTS AND USING A 15 YEAR OLD GIRL IN A DRUG OPERATION. THE COMPLAINT ALLEGES THAT BALLETTO AND PEARMAIN KEPT A 15-YEAR-OLD RUNAWAY GIRL FOR WEEKS AT AN EXTENSIVE MARIJUANA GROW ON 681 ACRES OF LAND IN LAKE COUNTY, OWNED BY BALLETTO. THE TWO ARE ALSO ACCUSED OF SUBJECTING THE TEEN TO SEXUAL ABUSE AND LOCKING HER IN A METAL BOX FOR SEVERAL DAYS. BASED ON EVIDENCE FOUND AT THE GROW SITE, AUTHORITIES FEAR THAT ADDITIONAL VICTIMS MAY HAVE BEEN SUBJECTED TO SEXUAL ABUSE AT THE HANDS OF THE TWO SUSPECTS. ANYONE WITH INFORMATION ABOUT OTHER VICTIMS IS URGED TO CONTACT AUTHORITIES. IF CONVICTED, BALLETTO AND PEARMAIN WILL FACE 10 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON.

ROAD WORK TODAY JH 07/23/13

THERE ARE NUMEROUS CONSTRUCTION AND ROAD WORK PROJECTS AROUND LAKE AND MENDOCINO COUNTIES THIS WEEK, AS WELL AS TWO PROJECTS TODAY THAT MAY CAUSE MINOR TRAFFIC DELAYS.

PG&E WILL PERFORM UTILITY MAINTENANCE ON HIGHWAY 20 NEAR MIDDLE CREEK FROM 9 AM TO 2:30 PM TODAY.

PG&E WILL ALSO PERFORM UTILITY REPAIRS ON HIGHWAY 1 NEAR JEFFERSON WAY FROM 9 AM TO 12 NOON TODAY.

AT BOTH LOCATIONS, ONE-WAY TRAFFIC CONTROL WILL BE IN EFFECT WITH 5-MINUTE DELAYS ANTICIPATED.

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