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A body’s been found after a fire at a home in Laytonville. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Dept. reports the fire this past Saturday just before 8 in the morning. The Laytonville Volunteer Fire Department and Cal Fire went to the home in the 48000 block of Highway 101 and found the structure fully engulfed in flames. The fire put out, but several hours after they went inside and found a body. Now the Sheriff’s Office is investigating along with a Fire Investigator from Cal Fire to determine how the fire started. The Sheriff’s Office says they’ve been in contact with the person’s family and they are getting DNA samples for comparison which could take several months to get back due to heavy caseloads. An autopsy is set for tomorrow.

The Sheriff’s office investigating some mail thefts in Ukiah make a couple of arrests. Deputies went to a home in Redwood valley after a complaint. At the same time the Ukiah Police Department reported on some attempts at fraud at a bank and store in Ukiah. They’ve identified one suspect as Charles Dale Maxfield who’s been arrested in a department store with a stolen checkbook. Another person has also been identified as trying to pass a check from the same checkbook at a bank in Ukiah. But police also found a bunch of stolen mail near a dumpster at a motel where Maxfield had been staying. Madalena Acosta was subsequently arrested with stolen mail in the motel room. They say they also found drugs in the room. The two held in jail on $15,000.00 bail. Cops say they’re looking for two other people who may have been involved.

Warning from state and federal recovery officials to look out for any suspicious activity or possible fraud from scam artists, identity thieves or other criminals trying to prey on fire victims. They same some of the fake offers they’ve recorded include promises of disaster grants, but first needing a cash deposit or advance. Phony housing inspectors, asking for banking information., something they say FEMA workers never do. Phony contractors without licenses, make sure to ask to see the license and don’t rush into hiring someone and get three bids too, then only pay about 10% or $1,000 whichever is less. And bogus pleas for post disaster donations or of course, what we’ve seen in the past, price gouging. To register for disaster assistance call 800-621-3362, TTY 800-462-7585, or at www.DisasterAssistance.gov

And further… if you have knowledge of fraud, waste or abuse may call the FEMA Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or report it to the Federal Trade Commission at DHSOIGHotline.

Six locations getting Mobile Disaster Recovery Centers. There are five northern California counties getting the centers. Starting today those who’ve been displaced by the November wildfires and had to relocate and cannot travel to fixed-site Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) in Butte, Los Angeles and Ventura counties. The centers will be staffed with folks from FEMA’s Individual Assistance and Mitigation teams, the Small Business Administration (SBA) and other state and federal agencies and other nongovernmental service organizations. They’re jointly operated by the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). They’re in Alameda, Contra Costa, Sacramento, Shasta and Tehama counties:

Sacramento County
Citrus Heights Community Center
6237 Fountain Square Dr.
Citrus Heights, CA 95621
Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Dec. 17, 18, 19 & Dec. 27, 28, 29

Contra Costa County
Public Works
255 Glacier Dr.
Martinez, CA 94553
Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Dec. 17, 18, 19 & Dec. 27, 28, 29

Tehama County
Red Bluff Fairgrounds
650 Antelope Blvd.
Red Bluff, CA 96080
Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Dec. 17, 18, 19 & Dec. 27, 28, 29

Alameda County
Sheriff’s Station
4985 Broder Blvd.
Dublin, CA 94568
Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Dec. 20, 21, 22 & Jan. 3, 4, 5

Sacramento County
Regional Parks
10361 Rockingham Dr.
Sacramento, CA 95827
Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Dec. 20, 21, 22 & Jan. 3, 4, 5

Shasta County
Shasta/Redding Public Library
1100 Parkview Ave.
Redding, CA 96001
Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Dec. 20, 21, 22 & Jan. 3, 4, 5

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