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A more-than-130-year-old Mendocino County church has been destroyed by fire. The New Life Community Church, originally called Covelo Presbyterian Church when founded in 1884, burned down around 1am Saturday morning. The Press Democrat reports the back doors were open when tribal police responded after getting calls about smoke coming from the church. Cal Fire and Covelo volunteer firefighters responded but couldn’t save the building. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the cause. A church elder says transients were known to camp out by the door and that the fire was being considered suspicious.

The Mendocino County Fire Recovery Team will hold a community meeting Wednesday evening to support survivors of the Redwood Complex Fire. The community meeting will have a briefing for residents with updates on the Debris Cleanup and Removal Program, FEMA’s short-term housing programs, and long-term recovery projects. Following the updates, there will be an opportunity to ask questions. It’s Wednesday, November 15, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
at theEagle Peak Middle School Cafeteria in Redwood Valley. If you can’t make it there, the briefing will be streamed live on the Mendocino County Facebook page and YouTube Channel. And you can submit questions in advance to the Mendocino County Executive Office at

A reported domestic violence call has led to the arrest of a parolee with a stolen van. Ukiah Police responded Saturday night to an area on East Clay Street for a call about a man and woman arguing. When officers saw the man, Kenneth Dewitt, they recognized him as being out on parole. As one officer spoke to him about the argument with the woman, who turned out to be an ex-girlfriend, another officer noticed Dewitt’s van had its ignition taken apart so it could be started without a key. A records check revealed the van had been reported stolen out of Crescent City October 29. Dewitt was arrested for possession of a stolen vehicle and for violation of his parole. At last check he was being held on no bond.


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