Categorized | Crime, Eel River Valley

County Drops Charges Against Sterback

Fernbridge Cafe free of any further regulatory snafus

 

Staff Report
Humboldt Sentinel

 

A sad interlude of bureaucratic intransigence and red tape-slinging has come to an end as Humboldt County officials announced today the dismissal of all criminal charges against Steve Sterback, the owner of the Fernbridge Market and Cafe.

“Ultimately, the District Attorney’s Office determined that dismissal of the pending charges would be in the interest of justice, given the fact that the issues identified by the County have been addressed and the Café has been legally open and operating for some time,” Deputy District Attorney Kelly Neel stated in a release today.

It all started over a year ago, when the Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health suspended Sterback’s food facility permit due to water quality issues — despite the assurances of the owner that he was using bottled water during the period that a nearby water supply was temporarily contaminated by runoff. After the March suspension, the DA pressed charges in April 2011 on three counts of operating a food facility without a permit, which would constitute a violation of California Health and Safety Code section 114381.

Numerous attempts to set the case for trial, only to be frustrated by the lack of an available courtroom and unavailable witnesses; during this time, the county was under public pressure to allow Sterback to stay in business, and with the water quality issue cleared up, Sterback had re-obtained his permit and was legally open and operating for several months.

The case was set for trial numerous times, but each time was continued for reasons that included lack of an available courtroom and unavailable witnesses. In the meantime, the People and Mr. Sterback worked at trying to resolve the case. Ultimately, the District Attorney’s Office determined that dismissal of the pending charges would be in the interest of justice, given the fact that the issues identified by the County have been addressed and the Café has been legally open and operating for some time.

“At this point, the County is satisfied that Mr. Sterback is operating in compliance with the applicable laws and regulations and continues its oversight of the Cafe’s operations,” Deputy District Attorney Christa McKimmy, who handled the prosecution for the People, stated today.

2 Responses to “County Drops Charges Against Sterback”

  1. Mike Lorrey says:

    Congratulations to Mr Sterback in standing up to the county and refusing to be intimidated. This is clearly a case where a low level bureaucrat overreached his or her authority, ignoring the facts. I hope this is a lesson to the rest of the bureaucrats in the area that they serve the people, and the people include Mr Sterback.

  2. Jake says:

    Tough guy Gallegos can’t follow through once again.
    ‘No available courtrooms, no witnesses, ahhhhh fuck it, dismissed.’ Who cares now that he’s not breaking the law anymore, right? He learned his lesson I guess. Maybe Gallegos does know what hes doing.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks


Leave a Reply

HumSentinel on Twitter

RSS Progressive Review

  • NYPD to treat protestors like terrorists
    Vox - New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton unveiled a new militarized police unit that will be trained and armed with heavy protective gear, long rifles, and machine guns to restrain terrorists and social justice protesters.Bratton explained the purpose of the unit, which will consist of 350 officers, to CBS New York:It is designed for dealing with even […]
  • About Michelle Obama's lack of headscarve in Saudi Arabia
    VoxAmerican officials in Saudi Arabia typically do not wear headscarves, including at formal government functions. Michelle was following normal protocol.Former first ladies Laura Bush and Hillary Clinton did not wear headscarves on similar official visits to Saudi Arabia. Neither did former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.Saudi Arabia is officially ultr […]
  • And now some true words about the war on terror from a former FBI official
    If you’re submitting budget proposals for a law enforcement agency, for an intelligence agency, you’re not going to submit the proposal that ‘We won the war on terror and everything’s great,’ cuz the first thing that’s gonna happen is your budget’s gonna be cut in half. You know, it’s my opposite of Jesse Jackson’s ‘Keep Hope Alive’—it’s ‘Keep Fear Alive.’ K […]
  • Metaphor of the day
    Sam Smith - I have recently have become conscious of something about the civil rights movement that I hadn't noticed before: not just the role of churches in the effort, but how their culture influenced the movement by creating congregations of like minded souls. Modern progressive movements are far more atomized for a number of reasons, including the f […]
  • Are we too hygIenic?
    Vox - Over the past few decades, doctors have arrived at a counterintuitive hypothesis about our modern, ultra-sanitized world. Too much cleanliness may be causing us to develop allergies, asthma, inflammatory bowel diseases, and other autoimmune disorders.The idea is that for many children in the wealthy world, a lack of exposure to bacteria, viruses, and a […]
  • AG nominee Loretta Lynch is a rightwinger on some key issues
    NY Times - On matters of policy, Ms. Lynch called capital punishment “an effective penalty” and said she disagreed with Mr. Obama’s statements that marijuana was no more harmful than alcohol. She called the National Security Agency’s collection of American phone records “certainly constitutional, and effective.” […]
  • Obama's AG nominee perpetuates anti-marijuana myth
    Max Ehrenfreund, Washington Post -  Loretta Lynch, President Obama's nominee for attorney general, disagrees with him on marijuana. That weed is not safer than alcohol might have been the most controversial thing she said during her confirmation hearing Wednesday. As Danny Vinik notes, polls show that large majorities of Americans believe that alcohol i […]
  • How NAFTA hurt America
    John Conyers, Huffington Post  - Twenty years ago, as the North American Free Trade Agreement was coming into force, the nation had high hopes. The trade pact's backers promised tens of thousands of new high-paying jobs, lower prices for consumers, and an export-driven renaissance for American manufacturing.NAFTA's legacy, tragically, bears no rese […]
  • Who can use a car pool lane?
    Lowering the Bar -  Some time ago we learned that the argument "but I am pregnant" is probably not a valid defense if you get a ticket for using the HOV lane. More recently we learned that even after the Citizens United case, an HOV-lane ticket also can't be avoided by pointing to the corporate papers you have been keeping in your front seat f […]
  • Castro wants Gitmo back
    BBC - There are still several hurdles for Barack Obama and Raul Castro to clearCuba has demanded the US hand back the Guantanamo Bay military base before relations with Washington are normalized.In a speech, President Raul Castro also called for the lifting of the US trade embargo and Cuba's removal from a terror list.Last month the two countries announ […]
  • Six reasons to support ranked choice voting
    Dick Woodbury, Bangor Daily News, ME - First, the finally elected candidate is chosen by a majority of voters.Second, there is no such thing as a spoiler candidate. If a candidate turns out not to be electable, then he or she is eliminated in the counting process. The candidate doesn’t “spoil” the result by taking away votes from somebody else.Third, voters […]
  • Ecology links
    NEWS Climate change Ecology & nature Energy Food Population Sustain yourself Climate change indicators Drought Eco shots Fracking Genetically modified crops Oceans & water Population statistics   ESSAYS The value of stone dust Myths of genetic engineering A poker player's guide to ecological risk assessment The ignored greenness of historic Popu […]
  • Word
    One of the basic troubles with radio and television news is that both instruments have grown up as an incompatible combination of show business, advertising and news. Each of the three is a rather bizarre and demanding profession. And when you get all three under one roof, the dust never settles. The top management of the networks with a few notable exceptio […]
  • One in five American kids on food stamps
    Huffington Post - One in 5 American kids got food stamps in 2014, up from 1 in 8 before the recession. About 16 million kids relied on the U.S. government's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program in 2014, according to Census Bureau data released Wednesday, up from 15.6 million a year earlier. In 2007, before the start of the Great Recession, that fig […]
  • Bottom 60% of households lost 14% of their wealth from 1983 to 2013
    Vox […]