Crime

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Felony Hit and Run in Eureka

Posted By on Thu, Oct 22, 2020 at 6:35 PM

Emergency personnel are loading the victim into the ambulance as of 6:21 p.m. - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • Emergency personnel are loading the victim into the ambulance as of 6:21 p.m.
A person is injured and unconscious but still breathing after a vehicle struck them at A Street on Fourth Street in Eureka and fled about 6:10 p.m. An EPD officer is on the scene with the victim who is still on the road. An ambulance was asked to respond to Code 3 (with lights and siren) to the scene.

The dispatcher reported that the suspect vehicle was likely a gold Toyota Celica.

Please remember that information gathered from initial reports is subject to revision as more facts become available.
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Robbery at Bayshore Mall

Posted By on Thu, Oct 22, 2020 at 4:02 PM

FILE
  • FILE
The Eureka Police Department is looking for two white male adults and a woman in a white 2003 Chevy Tahoe after a robbery at the Bayshore Mall around 2 p.m. The vehicle reportedly headed south on Broadway after the robbery.

One of the suspects had a knife and the other may have a firearm, according to the BOLO sent over the scanner.

Please remember that information gathered from initial reports is subject to revision as more facts become available.

Around 2:18 p.m. the vehicle was located at Pine and Wabash but is not occupied, according to an officer speaking over the scanner.

Read a Eureka Police Department release below.

On today’s date just before 2:00 p.m., officers with the Eureka Police Department responded to the 3300 block of Broadway for the report of a robbery that occurred in the parking lot.  Based on the preliminary investigation, it appears the victims and suspects were loosely known to each other and in a vehicle together.  For an unknown reason, two males in the vehicle presented a firearm and a knife and demanded money from the victims.  The suspects fled in a white 2003 Chevrolet Tahoe with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Officers located the unoccupied suspect vehicle a short time later near Pine and West Wabash.  This is an ongoing investigation and officers are working to identify the involved suspects.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Garberville Homicide Victim Identified as 21-year-old Redding Woman

Posted By on Wed, Oct 21, 2020 at 10:50 AM

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The Humboldt County Coroner’s Office has positively identified the human remains discovered near the south Fork of the Eel River in Garberville Oct. 9 as those of 21-year-old Kadie Lynn Jones, of Redding.

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office is investigating Jones’ death as a homicide after her body was found in a brush fire near the river bar. Investigators are now asking for the public’s assistance in finding information about Jones’ whereabouts in the days leading up to her death.

Jones is described as having stood approximately 5 feet tall and weighing 110 pounds, with brown/blond hair and blue eyes.

The Sheriff’s Office asks anyone who may have seen her in the Garberville area from Oct. 5 through Oct. 9 to call 445-7251 or the crime tip line at 268-2539.

See the full press release from the Sheriff's Office copied below:


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Monday, October 19, 2020

Humboldt Man Found Dead in Pelican Bay Prison Cell

Posted By on Mon, Oct 19, 2020 at 12:55 PM

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Pelican Bay State Prison authorities are investigating the death of Joshua E. Kirtley, who was in prison for the 1998 murder of Paul Sanders at a marijuana grow in the Southern Humboldt area, as a homicide.

Staff found 42-year-old Kirtley dead in his cell on Oct. 17.  Jesse A. Rippee, Kirtley’s cellmate, who was in the recreation yard when Kirtley was found, has been placed in segregation while the investigation is ongoing. Prison officials said Rippee had multiple injuries, "including facial swelling, scratches and bruises."

Kirtley was accused of beating and killing Sanders over a missing $5,000. Sanders’ girlfriend reported him missing a few days after he disappeared but his body wasn't recovered until June of 2003 after Kirtley was jailed on domestic violence charges and, Kirtley’s mother-in-law at the time told law enforcement about his involvement in Sanders' killing.

A man who was also charged in Sanders’ death led deputies to his remains. The first trial ended in a hung jury but Kirtley’s second trial resulted in a conviction and sentence of life in prison with the possibility of parole.

Below is a press release from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Officials at Pelican Bay State Prison (PBSP) are investigating the death of 42-year-old inmate Joshua E. Kirtley as a homicide.

On Oct. 17 at approximately 12:30 p.m., prison staff during a security check discovered Kirtley unresponsive in his cell. Staff immediately responded, called 911 and began life-saving measures. Kirtley was transported to PBSPs medical clinic and staff continued medical aid. Paramedics transported him to an outside hospital and he was pronounced dead at 1:05 p.m.

Jesse A Rippee, Kirtley’s cellmate, was on the recreation yard when Kirtley was found. Rippee had multiple injuries, including facial swelling, scratches and bruises. He was treated at the prison and then placed in segregated housing as PBSP’s Investigative Services Unit continues its investigation. The Office of the Inspector General was notified.

Kirtley was received on July 28, 2004 from Humboldt County. He was serving a life sentence with the possibility of parole for first-degree murder. Rippee was received on Sept. 24, 2015 from Los Angeles County, sentenced to 10 years for first-degree burglary, a second strike offense. While in prison, he was sentenced to an additional 15 years in 2017 for assault by a prisoner with a deadly weapon or force likely to cause great bodily injury.

PBSP, located in Del Norte County, houses more than 2,300 minimum-, medium-, and maximum-security inmates. The institution provides high school and college academic classes, career technical education, work assignments, self-help programs, arts-in-corrections, computer literacy and other rehabilitation programs that address substance use disorders, anger management and family relationships. The institution opened in 1989.
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Friday, October 16, 2020

DA Charges Driver Who Hit George Floyd Protester with Reckless Driving

Posted By on Fri, Oct 16, 2020 at 2:32 PM

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Humboldt County District Attorney Maggie Fleming has charged the driver of a red Jeep that drove through a crowd of protestors May 30 with reckless driving.

In its investigation, the DA's Office found that as the driver of the red Jeep was driving through a group of protestors who were walking in the road outside of a crosswalk, one person approached and banged on the driver’s side of the vehicle.

The person then leaped onto the hood of the Jeep and the driver accelerated and swerved his vehicle in response, striking another person walking in the road. The person who was hit suffered a concussion and significant bruising.

"The charge stems from the driver progressing through the protesters in an unsafe manner — before the driver responded to the person jumping onto the car," the release states.

But because the person who jumped on the vehicle caused someone to be hit, the DA's Office says, "it is not reasonable to anticipate that a jury would convict the driver of additional charges."

The Jeep driver faces a possible sentence of jail and/or probation, along with fines and fees and may also affect the maintenance of the driver’s insurance and license.

“This incident exemplifies how actions that facilitate, initiate or intensify physical conflicts can contribute to unpredictable, harmful outcomes. I think protests against ongoing injustice in society provide a particularly fitting opportunity — for both protestors and anyone who interacts with them — to behave with concern for everyone’s safety." Fleming said in a release.

Read the full release below.


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Thursday, October 15, 2020

Texting 9-1-1 is Now Available in Humboldt County

Posted By on Thu, Oct 15, 2020 at 11:29 AM

HCSO
  • HCSO
The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office announced today that texting 9-1-1 for emergencies is now available in unincorporated areas of Humboldt County, the city of Fortuna, Arcata, Humboldt State University and California Highway Patrol (other local cities will be launching Text to 9-1-1 capabilities soon).

Calling 9-1-1 during an emergency is still the preferred way to ask for help, but texting is a new option for contacting law enforcement and is intended to assist those who are deaf, hard of hearing, speech impaired, or anyone who cannot safely call 9-1-1 in a dangerous situation.

“When it comes to getting emergency assistance, every second counts,” Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal said. “Text to 9-1-1 is helping eliminate communication barriers and allowing all residents, regardless of disability, to get the services they need quickly.”

Just as calling 9-1-1, texting 9-1-1 should only be used in an emergency. According to the release, prank-texters can be identified and prosecuted according to local laws and regulations.

How do you text to 9-1-1?
  • Enter the numbers “911” in the “To” or “Recipient” field;
  • The first text to 9-1-1 should be short, include the address and the location of the emergency, and ask for police, fire or ambulance;
  • Push the “Send” button;
  • A dispatcher will respond to the text
  • Answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 dispatcher;
  • Text in simple words – no abbreviations, slang or emojis;
  • Keep text messages short.
According to the release, in order to text 9-1-1, you need a cell phone that has the capability to send text messages, and location services must be enabled. Standard text messaging rates apply and English is the only language available.

Tips on texting 9-1-1 in an emergency:
  • Be sure to include clear information about the location (including city) of the emergency with the type of help needed (police, fire, or medical) in the first text message sent to 911. Emergency personnel cannot always determine your location.
  • Stay on the line until the dispatcher closes the dialog, if it is safe to do so.
  • Text to 9-1-1 cannot be sent to more than one person (group message). Do not send your emergency text to anyone other than 9-1-1.
  • Text to 9-1-1 is not available if you are roaming.
  • If Text to 9-1-1 is not available in your area, you should receive a message from the wireless carrier stating that Text to 9-1-1 is not available and that you must place a voice or relay call to 9-1-1.
  • If you are deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech disabled, and Text to 9-1-1 is not available, use a TTY or telecommunications relay service, if available.
  • Photos and videos cannot be sent to 9-1-1.
  • Don’t forget to silence your phone if you don’t want to be heard.
  • Do not text and drive
Read the full press release below.
Text to 9-1-1 Now Available in Humboldt County

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office is pleased to announce the availability of Text to 9-1-1 for all residents in the county’s unincorporated areas.

While calling 9-1-1 during an emergency is still the preferred way to ask for help, Text to 9-1-1 is a new option for contacting law enforcement and is intended to assist those who are deaf, hard of hearing, speech impaired, or anyone who cannot safely call 9-1-1 in a dangerous situation.

“When it comes to getting emergency assistance, every second counts,” Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal said. “Text to 9-1-1 is helping eliminate communication barriers and allowing all residents, regardless of disability, to get the services they need quickly.”

Text to 9-1-1 is intended primarily for use in three emergency scenarios:

  • When an individual is deaf, hard-of-hearing, or has a speech disability.
  • When someone is in a situation where it is not safe to place a voice call to 9-1-1.
  • When a medical emergency arises that renders the person incapable of speaking.

Texting 9-1-1 should only be used in an emergency. Prank-texters can be identified and prosecuted according to local laws and regulations.

“Text to 9-1-1 ensures that those who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech impairment have equal access to immediate emergency services, and it also benefits the entire community,” Sheriff’s Office Emergency Communications Center Manager Morgan Schlesiger said. “This new technology has already proven critical reliable in emergency situations where an individual is unable to safely make a phone call. We’re here to help, call when you can, text when you can’t.”

The service is now available in the unincorporated areas of Humboldt County and the cities of Fortuna, Arcata, as well as HSU Police, and the California Highway Patrol. Other local cities will be launching Text to 9-1-1 capabilities soon.

How do you text to 9-1-1?

  • Enter the numbers “911” in the “To” or “Recipient” field;
  • The first text to 9-1-1 should be short, include the address and the location of the emergency, and ask for police, fire or ambulance;
  • Push the “Send” button;
  • A dispatcher will respond to the text
  • Answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 dispatcher;
  • Text in simple words – no abbreviations, slang or emojis;
  • Keep text messages short.

Text to 9-1-1 requires a cell phone that has the capability to send text messages, and location services must be enabled. Standard text-messaging rates apply. While currently, the texting service is only available in English, other language solutions are in development and will be implemented as soon as they become available. Similarly, the system cannot receive photos and videos at this time.

Tips on texting 9-1-1 in an emergency:

  • Be sure to include clear information about the location (including city) of the emergency with the type of help needed (police, fire, or medical) in the first text message sent to 911. Emergency personnel cannot always determine your location.
  • Stay on the line until the dispatcher closes the dialog, if it is safe to do so.
  • Text to 9-1-1 cannot be sent to more than one person (group message).  Do not send your emergency text to anyone other than 9-1-1.
  • Text to 9-1-1 is not available if you are roaming.
  • If Text to 9-1-1 is not available in your area, you should receive a message from the wireless carrier stating that Text to 9-1-1 is not available and that you must place a voice or relay call to 9-1-1.
  • If you are deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech disabled, and Text to 9-1-1 is not available, use a TTY or telecommunications relay service, if available.
  • Photos and videos cannot be sent to 9-1-1.
  • Don’t forget to silence your phone if you don’t want to be heard.
  • Do not text and drive

This new capability was provided to the Sheriff’s Emergency Communications Center at no cost from the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. As dialing 9-1-1 in an emergency is still the preferred way to request help, and the public is reminded to “Call if you can. Text if you can’t.”

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Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Woman's Remains Found at Garberville Brush Fire

Posted By on Wed, Oct 14, 2020 at 11:55 AM

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has launched a homicide investigation after the burned remains of a woman were found Oct. 9 near Garberville on a South Fork Eel River bar.

According to a news release, CalFire personnel responding to a brush fire discovered the remains after putting it out.

“The remains were collected and an autopsy was conducted on October 13,” the HCSO release states. “The identity of the decedent is being withheld pending next of kin notification. Evidence located through the autopsy indicates that the female likely died prior to the fire and her death has been determined to be a homicide.”

Read the HCSO release below.
On Oct. 9, 2020, at about 6 p.m., Humboldt County Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the 1300 block of Redwood Drive in Garberville for the report of human remains discovered nearby on the South Fork Eel River bar.

Just prior to contacting the Sheriff’s Office, CAL FIRE personnel responded to the river bar area for the report of a brush fire. Upon extinguishing the fire, personnel located burned human remains belonging to an adult female.

The remains were collected and an autopsy was conducted on October 13. The identity of the decedent is being withheld pending next of kin notification. Evidence located through the autopsy indicates that the female likely died prior to the fire and her death has been determined to be a homicide.

This is an active investigation.

More information will be released when available and appropriate. Anyone with information about this case is encouraged to call the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office at (707) 445-7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at (707) 268-2539.
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Monday, October 12, 2020

Attempted Carjacking, Lack of Gas Led to Murder Suspects' Arrests

Posted By on Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 12:16 PM

Two murder suspects wanted in Washington state were arrested in Humboldt County on Oct. 10 — one after running out of gas in Redway and the other after reportedly trying to carjack a local car dealership owner at gunpoint during a purported test drive.

According to a Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office news release, Matthew Collett, 37, was arrested on a trail in Samoa after deputies responded to a report of an attempted carjacking just before 6 p.m. Saturday at New Navy Base Road and Vance Avenue.

“Deputies arrived on scene and began searching the area for Collett. During that time, deputies contacted a passerby in the area who had observed Collet and was able to provide updated last known location information,” the release states. “Deputies searched that area and located Collett walking on a trail. Collett was taken into custody without incident.”

A firearm was located later by a deputy and K-9 Yahtzee.

Collett and Kylie Kadeen Craig, 28, are suspects in the kidnapping and murder of 31-year-old Rachell Rene Roberts, whose body was located earlier this month off U.S. Forest Service Road 24, near the intersection with Hwy 119, in the Lake Cushman area in Mason County, Washington.

The car dealership owner, Jim Finney of Courtesy Used Cars, told Redheaded Blackbelt that he feels lucky to be alive after the encounter.

“I could just see in his eyes there was a very desperate look on his face,” Finney said in describing how he said Collett raised a gun at him after he pulled over at Vista Point during what was supposed to be a test drive.


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Sunday, October 11, 2020

UPDATE: Washington Murder Suspects Arrested in Humboldt

Posted By on Sun, Oct 11, 2020 at 7:32 PM

UPDATE:

Read an update on the arrests of the murder suspects, one of which includes a reported attempted carjacking in Samoa, here.

PREVIOUS:


Yesterday afternoon, a pink car out of gas and an interaction with a helpful Garberville-based CHP officer led to the arrest of a couple suspected in the kidnapping and murder of 31-year-old Rachell Rene Roberts, whose body was located earlier this month off U.S. Forest Service Road 24, near the intersection with Hwy 119, in the Lake Cushman area in Mason County, Washington.

According to CHP Sgt. Matt Harvey, officers in Humboldt County had been alerted Saturday morning that 28-year-old Kylie Kadeen Craig and 37-year-old Mathew Collett, who were suspected in the death of Roberts, were believed to be in the area.

“About 12:15 [in the afternoon] an officer was traveling northbound on Redwood Drive and saw this spray-painted black and pink Hyundai with hazard lights on,”
Harvey said.  The officer saw a woman walking away from the vehicle. “She explained she was out of gas,” Harvey said.

The officer noticed Oregon plates on the vehicle. “He thought, ‘Something doesn’t feel right here,'” Harvey said. On closer examination, the vehicle had Chevy emblems and the license plate number was from a Toyota. The officer ran the vehicles VIN and it came back to a Hyundai wanted in connection with the homicide out of Mason County, Washington.

“[The woman] had initially given the officer a false name,” Harvey said. But a Humboldt County sheriff’s deputy arrived on the scene with more information.

“That was really helpful in identifying her,” the sergeant said. Harvey said he began working with the Mason County Sheriff’s Department. The vehicle was towed for evidence.

Although the details aren't clear, Collett was arrested later sheriff's office deputies, about 6 p.m., according to Humboldt County jail records.

The Mason County Sheriff's Department reported on Facebook that both suspects were arrested.

Roberts’ body was found in a rural area of Mason County. Washington, on Oct. 2. According to a statement from the Mason County Sheriff’s Office, “It was apparent from the evidence at the scene that this was a homicide. … We were able to identify the victim as Rachell Rene Roberts. She was assaulted and the Medical Examiner found signs of suffocation.”

An Oct. 8 Facebook post from the Mason County Sheriff’s Department: 
Over the past week, members of the MCSO, WSP and the FBI have been diligently investigating this homicide.

The investigation to this point has provided evidence which led to the MCSO requesting two arrest warrants for Murder and Kidnapping for; 1) Mathew Collett, white male, 37 yoa, 5’09”, 180, blue eyes, and bald 2) Kylie Kadeen Craig, white female, 28 yoa, 5’03”, 180, brown eyes and brownish/blond hair

Associated Vehicle: WA/BTX1364, 2013Hyundia Elantra, RED.

The Mason County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the assistance from the public with locating these two suspects. DO NOT CONFRONT THESE SUSPECTS. THEY ARE CONSIDERED ARMED AND DANGEROUS. 

Editor's Note: This story has been updated to clarify that both suspects were arrested in Humboldt County, while Craig was apprehended in Southern Humboldt.
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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Bank Robbery Suspect Arrested

Posted By on Tue, Sep 29, 2020 at 10:59 AM

Scene of the robbery. - EPD
  • EPD
  • Scene of the robbery.
One suspect has been arrested and another identified in the Sept. 16 robbery of a bank in Henderson Center.

Nolan Eugene Colegrove, 38, was taken into custody in Arcata on a drug warrant Sept. 25 and Eureka Police served a search warrant on his room in an Alliance Road residence before later arresting him on suspicion of bank robbery, according to a news release.

“EPD Detectives are also investigating Colegrove’s involvement in the September 9, 2020 armed robbery of a check cashing business on 5th Street,” the release states. “The second suspect involved in the bank robbery has been identified. The investigation is ongoing and a second arrest is anticipated later this week.”

The Arcata Police Department and the FBI were involved in the investigation.

Read the EPD release below: 
On September 16, 2020, at about 12:07 p.m., officers and detectives with the Eureka Police Department (EPD) responded to the report of an armed robbery at a bank on the 2800 block of F Street.

Two male suspects had entered the bank, brandished a firearm, and fled with an undisclosed amount of cash. The suspects were wearing masks and dark baggy clothing. Multiple observant citizens witnessed the suspects flee in a white Ford pickup with a license plate beginning with 49. EPD put the suspect and vehicle information out on Social Media and at 5:56 p.m., a citizen reported a truck matching the description was parked near Foxwood and Arbutus Streets in the Cutten area.

Officers responded and were able to confirm the truck had been involved in the robbery. The truck was towed and held as evidence. EPD would like to thank the numerous citizens who provided detailed descriptions of the suspects and the vehicle. This information was critical and greatly assisted in the investigation.

Detectives called on Special Agents with the FBI and worked with the Arcata Police Department. The team worked together to develop an investigative plan. During their extensive joint investigation, an EPD Detective and FBI Special Agents identified Nolan Eugene Colegrove (38 of Orleans) as one of the two suspects.

On September 25, 2020, Arcata Police Department contacted Colegrove near the 2500 block of Alliance Ave in Arcata. Colegrove was arrested on a drug warrant and booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility (HCCF). EPD and the FBI served a search warrant on Colegrove’s room on Alliance. Later that day, the EPD Detective and FBI Special Agent contacted Colegrove at HCCF and arrested him for his involvement in the September 16th bank robbery.

EPD Detectives are also investigating Colegrove’s involvement in the September 9, 2020 armed robbery of a check cashing business on 5th Street. The second suspect involved in the bank robbery has been identified. The investigation is ongoing and a second arrest is anticipated later this week.

Anyone with questions related to the FBI’s involvement in this case can contact the FBI at (415) 553-7400.
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