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The situation to our north in Shasta county seems to be going from bad to worse. Another firefighter has died in that spreading wildfire that has already taken upwards of 40,000 acres and led to thousands of evacuations. The so called Carr fire now threatens almost 5,000 homes. The smoke is wafting in all directions –even south into Lake county — but forecasters say it shouldn’t cause and health issues because a westerly wind will blow it out to sea this weekend

A judge has tossed out Sonoma County’s sale of a big tract of land for Santa Rosa’s biggest housing project. A superior court judge has sided with neighbors of the former Sutter Hospital campus who say the county was wrong to exempt the land from an environmental review. The county and the developers say they’ll review the ruling and decide if they want to take it to a higher court. They say the project would help the area deal with a housing shortage made worse by the loss of thousands of homes in last fall’s wildfires.

Watch for some roadwork related delays in Lake County next week on Highway 29. Crews will be doing some pavement work at Cruikshank Road overnights starting Monday between 8:00 PM to 7:00 AM.there could be delays of up to 5 minutes while the work is going on. CalTrans has info on that project and others on its website or at 1-800-gas-road


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The Pawnee Fire’s burned another thousand acres, but is 75% contained. And highway 20, which was closed because of the fire has reopened this morning and there are no restrictions. Firefighters have been up against this fire since June 23rd and now have it 75% contained with full containment expected before the end of the week. There are mandatory evacuations in place once again for the Double Eagle subdivision East of Clearlake Oaks on Hwy 20. Residents were allowed to go home briefly, before the fire started to move again and were told they had to leave their homes. Evacuation advisories have also been announced in the area between Highway 20 and Morgan Valley Road and from Sky High Ridge Road and the county line.

The County Fire blew up overnight. The fire in Yolo County started Saturday, then moved into Napa. It was at 32,500 acres and only 2 percent contained yesterday, but then overnight it grew to more than 44,500 acres. Cal Fire also reports the fire was 3% contained now. But it’s also moved into Lake County. Officials say erratic winds pushed the fire in all different directions with a run over the Blue Ridge Mountains along the Yolo and Napa county line. It’s also burning near Lake Berryessa. Mandatory evacuations are in place are in place for the County Fire too.

A meth lab’s been found in Nice but no arrests have been made. Detectives from the Lake County Sheriff’s Narcotics Unit say they served a search warrant at a home and found the Methamphetamine Conversion Lab saying it was used to convert liquid methamphetamine into crystal meth. They say about a half gallon of liquid meth was found which they say can produce more than two pounds of crystal meth with a street value of about $10,000. They say they didn’t find anyone home at the time and are continuing to investigate.

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Containment on the Pawnee fire continues to grow and the forward movement of the fire has stopped. But there is a red flag warning in place with hotter weather, wind and dry conditions forecast tonight into tomorrow night. The fire is holding at 13,700 acres and is 56 percent contained. Cal Fire reports 658 acres have burned in the Mendocino National Forest. There’s no estimate on when the fire might totally be 100% contained. There are more than 3,000 firefighters on the fire and more crews are being flown into remote regions to help strengthen containment lines. There is just the mandatory evacuation order remain in effect for Walker Ridge and a road closure on Walker Ridge Road at Highway 20.

A man accused in the murder of another man at a marijuana operation in a remote area of Covelo has been found guilty. Joshua Ruoff formerly of New Hampshire convicted for the willful, deliberate and premeditated murder of Timothy Sweeting in May of 2016 with the jury also finding true an enhancement of the sentence because the defendant used a baseball bat in the of the murder. The matter has been sent to the Adult Probation Department for further study before sentencing. The D-A says it could be 26 years to life in state prison for Ruoff who’s due back in court July 20th.

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After a search, police have taken an Upper Lake man into custody in connection with the death of the man’s wife. 64 year old William Morton Henry is being held on a million dollars bail; police have been on the hunt for Henry since Monday after police reported the suspicious death of Henry’s wife, 51 year old Cindi Henry. Henry was taken into custody without incident at his home yesterday morning. Cindi Henry was found dead by family members at the house on Monday; an autopsy determined her death to have been a homicide by asphyxiation, according to the medical examiner.

Lake County reaching a settlement to pay two million dollars to the only son of a Lake County jail inmate who killed herself in her cell in 2015. The settlement is thought to be the highest amount recorded in the state involving an inmate suicide. The case was scheduled to go on trial this month in the Humboldt County federal courthouse but the settlement was reached before the court date. Dane Shikman filing the suit against the county and its private jail’s medical provider for the inadequate treatment of his mother. 56 year old Elizabeth Gaunt died in August of 2015, a little more than a day since she was arrested. Gaunt was in the holding cell for more than 25 hours without being booked into jail or seen by a doctor, the jail’s medical provider sent a nurse instead, who wasn’t qualified to perform detailed evaluations, make a diagnosis or make decisions on treatment.

Tomorrow, it’s the 17th annual Lake County Home Wine and Beer makers’ festival, it all happens from noon until 5 at Lakeport’s Library Park. The event is a major fundraiser for symphony and youth music programs in Lake County. There will be food vendors, an exhibition of classic cars, wine sampling and much more. Winemakers will also have the chance to have their wares professionally judged. There will be gold, silver and bronze ribbons handed out; attendees will also vote in the “people’s choice” award category. There will also be live music from the popular David Neft Duo.

In Kelseyville, four people are arrested after allegedly stealing more than five thousand dollars worth of property from a house. The suspects identified as 39 year old Misty Rose Scott, 25 year old Ian Skyler Sanders, 24 year old Jessica Mae Sanders, and 30 year old James Michael Jackson. Several of the suspects were caught on the victim’s security camera system taking items from the residence in the 2000 block of Westlake Drive on Tuesday. Police were able to identify the suspects from earlier interaction with them. The four are being held on burglary charges, and three suspects are also facing parole violation charges.

An 18 year old from Healdsburg was arrested earlier this week after leading police on a high speed chase on Highway 101. Just after midnight, police pulled Fabian Anthony Flores Gonzalez over for speeding, when after initially stopping, Gonzalez pulled away and headed back onto the freeway. The pursuit reached speeds of up to ninety miles an hour until Gonzalez stopped at a construction site near Geyserville and fled on foot. He was taken into custody after a brief chase; authorities then discovered Gonzalez was in possession of a short-barreled assault rifle and a concealed handgun, along with several pounds of marijuana, other drugs and cash. He was booked into the Sonoma County jail.

A seasonal burn ban takes effect on Monday throughout the North Bay; bans on burning vegetation and other debris are already in effect in several areas of the state. The ban covers all areas in Sonoma, Lake, Napa, Marin, Solano, Yolo and Colusa counties. The arrival of a new fire season is unsettling news to those still recovering from last fall’s fires that burned 137 square miles in Sonoma County alone. So far this year, crews have responded to more than eighteen hundred wildfires, including one still burning at the edge of the Mendocino National Forest. That blaze has blackened nearly 2300 acres since it started last weekend.

A Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy is injured chasing an inmate who was trying to escape during a visit to Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital yesterday. The deputy was struck in the head by a metal door as she chased inmate Yesenia Carranza as she tried to escape. Carranza had been serving a 30 day sentence at the county’s main detention center on drug charges when she was taken to Sutter hospital yesterday for an undisclosed medical ailment. She escaped custody around 2:30 but was captured a short time later by hospital security. She now faces felony charges of escape and resisting arrest resulting in injury. The deputy was admitted to the hospital out of caution but was expected to make a full recovery.

A woman has been arrested in Virginia, she’s suspected of being involved in a pair of violent Santa Rosa-area home invasion robberies from February that resulted in one person being shot to death and a second person wounded. Police say 20 year old Amber Hembree is one of five people suspected on murder, robbery and kidnapping charges. U S Marshals found the woman hiding in the attic of a house in Chester, Virginia, armed with a stolen, loaded handgun. In the break-ins, people in both houses were bound and two of them were shot; one homeowner, identified as 54 year old Jose Luis Torres, was shot ten times before he died. In the other robbery, a 42 year old resident was shot in the arm. Hembree eluded police for four months.

Community members taking the Petaluma school board to task over a decision by the Petaluma High School to abruptly cut off the commencement speech by the school’s valedictorian who tried to speak about being sexually assaulted during her time at the high school. 17 year old honors student Lulabel Seitz said she was assaulted on campus by someone she knew and that she wanted to express her frustration over what she believes is a lack of action by school administrators. Her microphone was shut off four minutes into her speech. The school board’s first meeting since the graduation ceremony was held Tuesday; several people criticizing the administration’s handling of the incident.

Ukiah police chief Chris Dewey announcing he’ll retire at the end of June to take a civilian job with the Mendocino County Sheriff’s office; Dewey says his last day will be June 29th. He’s set to begin a new job as a civilian managing the hiring process for the Sheriff’s office, including conducting background checks and assisting with recruiting and training new deputies and corrections officers.

The Bureau of Land Management’s Ukiah Field Office is looking for volunteers to help pick up trash, targets and spent shells at the North Cow Mountain Rifle Range this Saturday; the work will begin at 9 a.m. Field Manager Amanda James says the goal is to remove debris and keep America’s public lands beautiful for everyone to enjoy. Volunteers are needed to help remove larger abandoned trash items; the Bureau will provide gloves, tools, pickers, bags and other supplies. Because of the nature of the job, those under 18 and pregnant women will not be allowed to take part.

Tomorrow evening, the US Army Corps of Engineers and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection will do a controlled burn at the Coyote Valley Dam. The burn will begin around 5 pm and last until 9 pm, and is designed to help the Corps of Engineers remove vegetation from the face of the Coyote Valley Dam, which in turn will allow access and visibility for a required inspection. The burn will take place under very tight restrictions and security for the safety of firefighters as well as area residents.

A couple from Lakeport entering pleas of not guilty to charges they sold young women into prostitution. 37 year old Sam Massette and 27 year old Krystina Pickersgill are facing a number of felony charges; police also say Massette has a prior serious felony conviction for a 2002 vehicular manslaughter case in which he ran over a 16 year old during a gang fight in San Francisco. The pair will have a preliminary hearing next Wednesday; they were arrested June 5th after a two-month investigation. Police say more charges are expected.

Authorities arresting 17 people and seizing nearly twenty thousand marijuana plants with a value of more than four million dollars on Wednesday. Search warrants were served in two locations near Galt in rural Sacramento County. Police say the lengthy investigation resulted in the takedown of a large scale marijuana cultivation and trafficking organization. Thirty people were detained by law enforcement; the 17 people arrested face charges including possession of firearms during the commission of a felony along with the marijuana charges; authorities also seizing thirteen guns, at least two of which had been reported stolen.

The Highway Patrol is on the hunt for a 21 year old man from Santa Rosa who they say took off after a crash that injured his passenger Tuesday night. Police say Skylar Sachse is a known gang member and fled on foot after plowing a Dodge Neon into the guardrail near Guerneville. A 17 year old female passenger was injured and taken to an area hospital. CHP says alcohol is thought to have been a factor in the crash; Sachse was on felony probation in connection with prior weapons charges.

A jury in Sonoma county handing a 1.1 million dollar judgement to the plaintiff in a whistleblower case involving the Hanna Boys Center. The jury finding that the former clinical director was wrongly terminated after he spoke up about bullying, drug use and other concerns at the facility. Tim Norman was fired in November of 2016 and says the verdict is a relief.

An autopsy is pending, but authorities don’t suspect foul play in the death of a San Francisco man found in a Mendocino County lake yesterday morning; the body of 35 year old Joshua Piszczek was spotted by police in a lake at the Mendocino Magic campground; authorities say the man was attending a music festival nearby when he went missing after going for a swim sometime Saturday. He was reported missing on Monday. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s office launching a search effort along with twelve other area agencies.

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A new job for Uriah’s police chief. Chief Chris Dewey is retiring at the end of the month and will take a civilian job with the Mendocino County Sheriff’s office. He says says his new job as manager of the sheriff’s office professional services bureau was too good to pass up. His last day with Ukiah will be June 29th—and he goes to work form the County the following Monday. Dewey was first made chief in 2007 and later given the job as fire chief as well. He returned to the police chief only duties in 2013.He calls Ukiah a great place that he has been proud to serve. City Manager Sage Sangiacomo will appoint a replacement.

The Clearlake City council is expected to take a vote on the city budget this week,. That 22.5 million dollar spending plan is on the agenda as part of the council’s regular meeting , starting at 6 PM Thursday at City Hall.

The City of Clearlake is getting some help with illegal waste dumping. The city says is working together with Citizens Caring 4 Clearlake to clean up those sites—and so far, they have taken away the trash from 16 sites in the Clearlake Park neighborhood. The recently cleaned locations were filled with junk —things like household trash, electronics, wood and metal debris and tires . City officials say they depend on the public to report illegal dumping Complains can be made to the police and anyone who calls in a report can stay anonymous.

A man from Clearlake remains in jail after police say he got into a violent argument with his girlfriend. 35 year old Roger Dale Peters was arrested after the woman told tribal police that Eel River Campground on Etsel Ridge Road in Covelo , where the two had been staying together. Reports say the victim was punched several times in the head. Peters was taken to the Mendocino County Jail where he was booked on felony domestic violence battery charges. His bail was set at $25,000.

Two people from Lakeport charged with Human Trafficking have entered not guilty pleas. 37 year old Sam Massotto and 27 year old Krytina Pickersgill are facing felony charges—accused of selling a young women into prostitution in the Bay Area. The two were arrested last week following a two month long investigation They are both being held on a million dollars bail and are due back in Lake county court June 20th. The D A’s office says more charges are possible.

The investigation into the suspicious death of a woman from Upper Lake continues. Family members found 51 year year old Cindi Henry’s bodyat her home on Monday and an autopsy is being done to find out just how she died. Police say they want to talk to the woman’s husband , Bill Morton Henry, who was was last seen at that house over the weekend. The Lake County Sheriff’s office would like to hear from you if you know where he is or have any other information about the case.

Guilty pleas for the people who were charged with plant poaching in Humboldt County. Prosecutors say the poachers were after the plants called Dudleya ,which are popular overseas in places like China and Korea, but can’t be taken from public property in California. All are all foreign nationals and will each get up to three years in prison. When the three were arrested in April, police say they seized more than 2,300 plants and $10,000 in cash.

A report says property crimes in California have gone up since voters approved reducing criminal penalties in 2014 . According to the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California, the state reported nine percent more larcenies 2016, two years after voters passed Proposition 47, which lowered lowered some sentences . The study says while property crimes went up, there was no corresponding increase in violent crimes. Supporters say the proposition has succeed in its goal of reducing prison population but there is a drive to put a measure on this fall’s ballot that would partially roll back the sentencing changes.