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[title News 8/30/18

A carjacking reported in Redwood Valley where the owner of a car says they were ambushed. The Mendocino County sheriff’s office reports finding Jarvais Primus who told them the suspect pointed a gun at him and took his rental car, and there was a bunch of cash inside. Deputies also say Primus was involved in processing marijuana oil. He told them he owned a business that legally sells Vape pens and marijuana oil in California and Georgia. Deputies say they think it might have been a friend of his, and suspected John Bellotti Jr., the husband of a mutual friend. The stolen car was spotted soon after and deputies and a Fish & Wildlife officer went after it beyond Willits. But the car was abandoned. Later though Bellotti surrendered at the Sheriff’s Office Ukiah station and was booked on suspicion of carjacking, robbery, and evading a peace officer/reckless driving and was held on $75,000 bail.

A fire that started after a car drove off Eastside Calpella Road has been quickly put out. The Redwood Valley-Calpella Fire Department reports getting a call Tuesday to a car down an embankment. And when they got there, there was a fire under a black SUV. Firefighters were able to slow forward movement so it didn’t explode into a larger fire. It charred about a quarter acre. PG&E also responded to cut off power to a line that was knocked down after the SUV went down the embankment. Cops say the driver of the SUV was a 13-year-old boy who had three passengers onboard, two teen-age girls and a small child. Charges against the teen driver are pending. One of the girls was apparently injured too.

The Lakeport Fire Protection District Board of Directors has put off a vote on their 2018-2019 budget proposal. They’ve got a budget gap of about $160,000, which means they’ll likely have to a cut a firefighter position, but they may avoid severance of two other positions if they use some reserve funds. The Record Bee reports the Fire Chief saying they have to make serious cuts and that the proposed budget contained bandaids to close the budget hole, but there were no long term solutions. Adding a fire tax hike was advisable. But that can’t go to voters until the June 2019 election.

A bill that would mean there would now be statewide alerts to warn folks about wildfires, floods, earthquakes and other emergencies to be signed by the Gov. Both houses of the Legislature have unanimously supported the bill drafted by multiple North Coast lawmakers, including Sens. Mike McGuire and Bill Dodd and Assemblymembers Cecilia Aguiar- Curry and Jim Wood. It comes after the October firestorm. McGuire saying there needed to be a universal emergency alert system in all 58 counties. So now the Office of Emergency Services has to create emergency alert guidelines, working with government groups, cellphone providers and other stakeholders, by July 1st.

Drama at the state Capitol as a bill that could mean PG&E wouldn’t have to pay for any damage the utility couldn’t afford from the October Firestorm heads to a final decision. The decision tomorrow ahead of the end of the latest legislative session. The bill has been going back and forth all month, looking like it was totally dead, then being revived in the 11th hour. The bill hangs in the balance as state investigators already found the utility’s equipment was responsible for starting 16 major wildfires last year. A lawyer in Santa Rosa representing thousands of fire survivors who are suing PG&E says the bill does nothing for fire victims. Others say the utility is in jeopardy of survival.

A woman sleeping in a cardboard box being swept clean with heavy equipment has been killed. Police say Shannon Bigley was killed Aug. 1st where she was sleeping on a grassy field along the highway in Modesto. The CHP is investigating the death, police calling it an accident and expressed sympathy to Bigley’s family. The woman said to be from Oregon, but her last known address was in Stockton. She was living in the homeless camp recently. The union that cleared the camp has filed a grievance to stop homeless camp cleanups by Caltrans maintenance workers, something they’ve previously said they lacked training for.

The Mendocino Complex Fire’s on target to hit the 100% containment mark by Sept. 1st. Cal Fire is no longer managing the fire, instead, the US Forest Service is now in command but says the USDA is managing the fire with a California Interagency Incident Management Team. The fires, the Ranch and River broke out the same day, Friday, July 27th, nearly 5 weeks ago. The fires blew up to be the largest in the history of the state, but the River Fire’s forward progress stopped weeks ago and was 100% contained. Then the Ranch Fire became the largest ever in the state, burning 410,182 acres and is now 93 percent contained. The River fire burned 48,920 acres. The fires together are 93% contained. There’s been 3 firefighter injuries and one firefighter death.

The Mendocino County Sheriff’s dept. on the lookout for an elderly man they say failed to register as a sex offender. 75 year old David Otis Perrine was featured yesterday on the Sheriff’s Warrant Wednesday Facebook post. Perinne from Calpella’s described as 5′ 8″, 160 lbs with Brown Hair and Blue eyes. They’re asking anyone who may have seen him to call the Sheriff’s Office at (707) 463-4086.

A man from Kentucky arrested after getting cops to take him to the hospital, faking a heart attack… so he could go to the hospital cafeteria. Kenneth Couch a suspect for a stolen gun, but police say he was at the hospital after having a heart attack at a nearby business. The ambulance went to the business to take him to Baptist Health Corbin hospital. Emergency workers say when they got there, Couch jumped out and casually walked to the cafeteria. Then the Knox County Sheriff’s Office got there and arrested him for burglary and falsely reporting an incident. He also had a warrant for his arrest elsewhere for writing phony checks.

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