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Friday, March 27, 2020

County Announces Virtual Town Hall Meeting on COVID-19 Response

Posted By on Fri, Mar 27, 2020 at 4:25 PM

Humboldt County Public Health is urging local residents to participate in a virtual town hall meeting with local officials Monday evening to discuss the local response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The meeting, which will be be broadcast and streamed live, will include Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services Director Connie Beck, Board of Supervisors Chair Estelle Fennell, Health Officer Teresa Frankovich, Sheriff William Honsal and Public Health Director Michele Stephens. The Journal will be moderating the meeting, asking questions submitted by all local media outlets, and the public. (Questions can be emailed in advance to COVIDinfo@co.humboldt.ca.us or submitted via several other options included in the press release below.)

The meeting, which is slated to go from 6:30 to 8 p.m., will be broadcast live on Access Humboldt Channel 11 and on KZZH-LP 96.7. There are also a variety of streaming options, which you can find in the press release copied below.



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Monday, March 9, 2020

NCJ Preview with Access Humboldt

Posted By on Mon, Mar 9, 2020 at 9:00 PM

This week: We're talking about the Elk River Watershed, Humboldt County elections and how we camp out in the NCJ office to cover them, as well as how a pair of local campers became outdoor cooking YouTubers. Hit subscribe for weekly updates via YouTube.

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Friday, February 21, 2020

NCJ Preview with Access Humboldt

Posted By on Fri, Feb 21, 2020 at 5:55 PM

This week: Is Arcata ready to pay more taxes to keep the firefighters and stations it has, or make tough cuts to keep the costs down? It's on the March 3 ballot and we'll talk about emergency response and costs. Plus, Jesse Wiedel's gritty Heroin Hilton street art installation on an infamous Eureka building and how it vanished.
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Tuesday, January 7, 2020

North Coast Night Lights: Vacancy at 4th & E Streets, Eureka

Posted By on Tue, Jan 7, 2020 at 10:21 AM

banner-2020-01-01_bench-4th_e_2500px.jpg
For years, driving by, I would see her lonely figure sitting on the bench. I never stopped, but in time I grew used to her presence there and I would look to touch base visually when I passed. Huddled inward and completely covered, she had erected a shell between herself and the outside world, perhaps retreating to the safety of her own thoughts to live in a world of her own choosing. I could identify with that on some level.

I don’t recall ever seeing what she looked like, for in my recollection she was always completely covered. She was consistently there for years, eventually becoming a part of that corner. And then, without realizing when exactly the transition occurred, I began noticing that she was no longer there. The bench was empty. A part of the corner felt missing.

The corner has long called to me to come photograph it some night. The street corner itself is stylish as street corners go, now that the utility box near the bench has been painted as part of Eureka’s utility box beautification project (its handle is at the right edge of the image). The curved wood and iron bench is fashionable and smart. There is a small shade tree, which was out of view behind me, and beneath everything a classic brick sidewalk ties it all together. I had thought to photograph the scene in its entirety, but looking into the camera’s viewfinder it felt like something was missing from the composition. It was the woman on her bench. What ever became of her? I didn’t know. And then oddly, almost by necessity, everything fell away as the mystery of the empty bench drew me to it. The missing element became the subject, and I photographed an empty bench.
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I shared the image in one of Humboldt County’s Facebook pages, thinking maybe someone would see the empty bench and remember the person who used to occupy it. I was amazed to find an outpouring of heartwarming stories from people who had noticed her there and remembered her. In a flood of personal tales, people told their stories of meeting the woman or simply of being accustomed to seeing her there. Many shared feelings about the empty bench left behind. It touched the humanity within me that so many people had noticed her, and that she had become such a part of that place for so many. The corner without the woman is an outdoor art exhibit, a living installation with its shade tree, a brick sidewalk, a three-dimensional mural and a pretty bench — and for a long time a living human was a part of it, and her absence was felt by many.

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Tuesday, November 26, 2019

APD Chief, Charmaine Lawson Ask Witnesses to Come Forward

Posted By on Tue, Nov 26, 2019 at 4:01 PM

Charmaine Lawson speaks to the crowd gathered to honor her son and demands justice for him on the second anniversary of his killing. - FILE
  • File
  • Charmaine Lawson speaks to the crowd gathered to honor her son and demands justice for him on the second anniversary of his killing.
The mother of slain Humboldt State University student David Josiah Lawson has joined with Arcata Police Chief Brian Ahearn to tape a public service message asking for any witnesses to his April 15, 2017 stabbing to contact the department.

In the short clip, Charmaine Lawson says, “There is DNA evidence from the knife used to kill my son. Now we need eyewitnesses to come forth to help us get justice for Josiah."

Together, Charmaine Lawson and Ahern end the message by saying, “We need your help.” Listen to the audio below.
David Josiah Lawson - SUBMITTED
  • Submitted
  • David Josiah Lawson
November marks 31 months since the 19-year-old criminology major was killed at a house party on Spear Avenue in Arcata.

Kyle Zoellner, a then 23-year-old McKinleyville man, was arrested at the scene and charged with Lawson’s murder, but Humboldt County Superior Court Judge Dale Reinholtsen later found insufficient evidence to hold him and the charge was dropped.

In February of this year, a criminal grand jury convened to consider charging Zoellner declined to hand up any indictments in the case, a rare outcome in such proceedings.

Charmaine Lawson has remained outspoken in her quest to find the person who killed her son, traveling to Humboldt County from Southern California almost monthly to host vigils.

The APD release about the public service message states that the ongoing investigation indicates there are witnesses from the party who have not yet been interviewed.

“Those who were present but have not yet been interviewed may have information, unbeknownst to them, that could assist in the overall investigation,” the release states.

Read the full release from the Arcata Police Department below:


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Monday, November 18, 2019

Teen Rescuers Featured in Washington Post

Posted By and on Mon, Nov 18, 2019 at 9:30 AM

Spenser Stratton, Taj Ortiz-Beck and Adrian York. - COURTESY OF EVA YORK
  • Courtesy of Eva York
  • Spenser Stratton, Taj Ortiz-Beck and Adrian York.
This morning’s Washington Post feature’s a story about four local teenage surfers who rescued two brothers on Nov. 11 in the waters off Trinidad State Beach.

The rescue, first reported in the North Coast Journal, took place around 1:30 p.m. after the 15 year old and 20 year old visiting from out of town were swept out past the breakers on a foggy afternoon.

The four teens (hailing from Trinidad, Westhaven and Arcata, according to Dillon Cleavenger, a lifeguard with the State Parks who knows them) were surfing when they saw the two brothers in distress. “[T]hey noticed two men panicked and screaming for help as they were being sucked out against their will in a rip current,” Cleavenger said.

According to the Post’s article, “We told them, ‘Calm down — we got you!’ ” said one of the rescuers, Narayan Weibel, age 16. “Being out in that cold water without a wet suit is like taking an ice bath. They were having a hard time keeping their heads above water and thought they were going to die.”


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Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Best Of Buyer Beware

Posted By on Tue, Aug 27, 2019 at 1:04 PM

It has come to our attention that someone is making the rounds, calling winners of our Best of Humboldt contest and trying to sell them pricey plaques celebrating the victory. We want you all to know that someone is not us.

We’ve received a handful of phone calls from folks reporting that they’ve received congratulatory calls that quickly devolve into a sales pitch, urging them to commemorate the victory with a plaque ($170 for a small, $230 for a large). We have no idea whether the telemarketers make good on the promised plaques or this is some kind of phishing scam. Either way, we’d urge caution to anyone considering giving a credit card number over the phone. And again, that friendly/demanding voice over the phone is not ours.
SONNY WONG
  • Sonny Wong
Other papers have reported similar doings with similar contests. Buyer beware.
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Friday, August 9, 2019

HSU Enters Interim Agreement to Farm Out KHSU Management

Posted By on Fri, Aug 9, 2019 at 9:25 AM

Humboldt State University has entered into an interim agreement with Capital Public Radio in Sacramento to provide “programming assistance” to KHSU-FM, which was controversially gutted by the university back in April.

“The agreement allows KHSU to continue airing national and state programming as the university considers various approaches KHSU’s future,” states a university press release. “As a next step, HSU will be assessing options for maintaining KHSU as a vital public service radio station and ensuring its alignment with the university’s teaching mission.”

Under the agreement, which extends through October, Capital Public Radio will serve as KHSU’s station manager and essentially run the station.

KHSU's studio. - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • KHSU's studio.
As far as long-term solutions, the release states that HSU is considering joining ongoing partnership discussions between Capital Public Radio and North State Public Radio in Chico. But the release makes clear HSU is still assessing its options.

Before formally entering into any long-term discussions, the release states new HSU President Tom Jackson Jr. has indicated he wants to clarify “Humboldt’s overall goals for KHSU” and wants to gather input from faculty and students “to learn more about their interest in KHSU.”


“One thing he says he has heard frequently is the importance of the station’s presence and news role in connecting communities stretching from Petrolia to Crescent City,” the release states.

See the full press release from HSU copied below:


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Thursday, July 11, 2019

EPD Identifies Juvenile Responsible for Hate Group Fliers, Says no Immediate Threat of Violence

Posted By on Thu, Jul 11, 2019 at 3:35 PM

FILE
  • FILE
UPDATE:
The Eureka Police Department has issued a press release with some additional information, which can be found here.

PREVIOUSLY:
The Eureka Police Department has identified a male juvenile believed to be responsible for posting white supremacist recruiting fliers around town, interviewed him and determined there doesn’t appear to be an immediate physical threat to the community.

“He was identified with the assistance of family,” EPD Chief Steve Watson said. “In fact, a family member brought him in here very concerned. The family is very upset to find out what happened and to find out their son was involved in this. They did the right thing, which we very much appreciate.”

Watson said there's no indication that the hate group referenced on the flier has much of a local foothold.

“It does not appear at this stage as if there is some large, active group here in Humboldt County,” Watson said. “He may have acted alone.”

EPD became aware of the fliers yesterday, after a picture of one posted in the Henderson Center area in the morning began circulating on social media. Emblazoned with the image of an assault rifle, the flier read: “White youth! This entire system hates you and wants to see our race dead organize with us and bring an end to it.” The flier included an email address and the name of a hate group tied to a blog spot web page started earlier this month that included a manifesto outlining its ideology, which is militant, anti-establishment, anti-Semitic and overtly racist. Among other things, the site contained references to America being “infested” by minorities, saying the country was “never meant to be a melting pot” but a “shining beacon of true Aryan spirit.”

Watson said EPD identified the juvenile believed to be responsible — who Watson described as being “multi-racial” — last night and interviewed him this morning.

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Wednesday, July 10, 2019

KHSU Hit by Cyber Attack

Posted By on Wed, Jul 10, 2019 at 12:29 PM

KHSU's studio. - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • KHSU's studio.
The dead air you’ve been hearing on KHSU is the result of a ransomeware attack that disabled most of the station’s programming systems and storage servers, according to Humboldt State University.

A university spokesperson tells the Journal the university does not yet know whether the cyber attack on the station was the result of a broader fishing effort, a targeted ransom attack or an act of sabotage potentially carried out by someone upset with the university’s decision to eliminate the vast majority of the station’s staff and local programming back in April.

According to a press release, the servers affected by the attack did not house sensitive information and while these kinds of malware attacks often come with a ransom request, the university has not “received a specific payment demand.”

Noting that KHSU is federally licensed, the university press release notes the incident was reported to federal law enforcement and the Federal Communications Commission.

In the meantime, KHSU programming — which has consisted of feeds from affiliates in Sacramento and Chico since the station’s gutting — continues to be interrupted.

“The university hopes to have this resolved as soon as possible as it rebuilds programming and improves the security of KHSU,” the press release states.

See the full press release copied below:

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