Cast Adrift Without a Clue– or a Moral Compass
“There are crimes of passion and crimes of logic. The boundary between them is not clearly defined.”
EUREKA– On March 30, 2013, at about 6:00 p.m. the Eureka Police Department received the report of a sexual assault that had just occurred near the Eureka Municipal Golf Course on Fairway Drive.
The victim reported that she was walking on Fairway Drive when she heard a male in the nearby bushes asking for help. She saw that the male was bent down on one knee and appeared to be injured.
When she approached the male, he used force to push her to the ground and sexually assaulted her.
The suspect is described as a white male adult. He is about 5’8’’ tall with a medium build and brown eyes.
He was wearing a gray ski mask so his exact age is unknown but he appeared to be in his 30’s. He may have a reddish-brown thin mustache.
He wore a black hooded sweatshirt, dark blue exercise pants, and flesh-colored gloves.
The suspect was last seen on foot on Fairway Drive. Anyone with information concerning this assault is urged to call Detective Cress at the Eureka Police Department at 441-4044. Refer to case number 3C13-2697.
The Eureka Police Department has a new lead in the case. On the same evening, about two hours later, a citizen reported a bicycle abandoned on their property, several blocks north of the crime location, on F Street. The description of the subject who left the bike was similar to the description of the rape suspect given by the victim.
Two pictures of the bike are here. Clicking on the pictures will enlarge them. Anyone who recognizes this bike is asked to contact either lead Detective Pete Cress or Senior Detective Ron Harpham.
Detective Cress: firstname.lastname@example.org or 441-4390
Detective Ronald B Harpham:
604 C Street, Eureka, Ca 95501 #707-441-4305 email@example.com
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Abandoned Puppies Left to Die, Rescued
FORTUNA– On 04/01/13 at approximately 1:30 pm, the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Animal Control was dispatched to the area of Palmer Creek Road and Valley Road in Fortuna for a report of 5 abandoned puppies.
Upon arrival, Animal Control officers found 6 puppies in a grey Rubbermaid style tote. The puppies and the tote were covered in feces and urine and were sitting in the direct sun. There were no air holes in the tote, and the small holes in the handles had been covered with duct tape. The citizen who discovered the puppies advised that there was a lid with the tote and it was found lying on the ground next to it.
The puppies appear to be Border Collie mix, approximately 7 weeks old. Dehydrated and malnourished, they were transported to the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Animal Shelter.
It is unclear exactly how long the puppies had been at that location, the HCSO said. A citizen who was in the shelter when the puppies were brought in stated that she thought she had seen the tote sitting there the previous day as she was traveling on U.S. Highway 101.
The abandonment of an animal is a crime. Anyone with information about these puppies is asked to contact Animal Control Officer Nims at (707) 445-7251or call the Sheriff’s crime tip line at (707)268-2539.
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EUREKA– A burn victim was been flown to the U.C. Davis Medical Center after an explosion and fire in Eureka.
It happened around 1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2, at 3555 Pine Street in Eureka. Humboldt Bay Fire officials said they got to the scene and discovered the 40-year-old male victim on the sidewalk with second and third degree burns on his arms.
The explosion and fire started in an attached garage behind the victim’s home. Firefighters said there was dark gray smoke coming from inside. The victim said there were fireworks in the garage, but investigators also found butane which started to explode as they were extinguishing the flames and forcing them to attack the blaze from the outside.
There was no one else inside the home. The victim was taken to St. Joseph Hospital and later flown to U.C. Davis.
Humboldt Bay Fire officials said due to ‘suspicious circumstances’ that were present they will be conducting a further investigation. The garage was destroyed and $50,000 in extensive damages resulted.
UPDATE April 3: Fire investigators said today the blaze was caused by the illegal manufacturing of concentrated cannabis—or, butane-extracted hash.
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Traffic Stop Yields Meth, Stolen Property, and a Whole Lot More
EUREKA– On 4/01/13, at about 11:12 am, a uniformed Eureka Police Department officer on patrol observed a white 1987 Oldsmobile sedan traveling southbound on the 1400 block of Broadway in Eureka. The officer noticed the Oldsmobile’s windshield was shattered and he decided to stop the vehicle for the violation.
The officer conducted a traffic enforcement stop on the vehicle on the 1500 block of Broadway. When he asked the occupants for identification, the front passenger, Richard Burse Firebaugh (AKA: Richard Green), stated he thought he had a bench warrant because he had missed a court date. A local wants/warrants check on Firebaugh confirmed he had a misdemeanor warrant for his arrest.
The officer placed Firebaugh under arrest for his warrant. During a subsequent search of Firebaugh’s person and belongings, the officer located 8 individual small baggies containing crystal methamphetamine (approximately 4.4 grams total gross weight), two digital gram scales, 100 small clear plastic baggies (drug sales packaging materials), drug use paraphernalia (two meth pipes), and a suspicious set of keys. The keys had been filed down making their ridges smooth. The officer suspected these were “shave keys” commonly used for committing auto burglaries or stealing cars.
Inside Firebaugh’s leather jacket, which had been resting on the floorboard at his feet, the officer found a loaded Smith & Wesson .38 revolver. The revolver’s registered owner was subsequently contacted and asked if he knew the present whereabouts of his handgun. The owner, who resides in McKinleyville, confirmed he had recently reported it as stolen to the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office.
In addition to his warrant, Firebaugh (age 28 of Fortuna) was arrested on multiple fresh charges and transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked for:
- Possession of a controlled substance for sale
- Possession of stolen property
- Possession of a controlled substance while armed with a loaded firearm
- Possession of a firearm with intent to commit a felony
- Possession of a concealed firearm by a passenger in a vehicle
- Possession of drug paraphernalia
- Possession of burglary tools
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More on the Hit-and-Run Bang ‘Em Up Crash and Property Damage on Buhne and I Streets
EUREKA—For those who remember, on 3-10-13 at about 5:09 in the morning, officers were dispatched to the intersection of Buhne and “I” streets on the report of a hit and run that just occurred. Upon arrival Officers located a tremendous amount of property damage including: signal light pole down in the road, damaged fencing to a residence, damage to the chain link fence at Carson Park, and a large tree nearly pushed over, and miscellaneous vehicle debris belonging to a Dodge truck.
The registered owner of the truck, Chelsea Eisenberg was contacted at Wabash and “E” streets where the Dodge finally stopped running. She explained to investigating Officers that she was driving the Dodge when the collision occurred and was attempting to follow a car that “came out of nowhere” that caused her to crash. After speaking with her for a while Officers suspected that she was providing false information due to numerous inconsistencies with her statement.
Eisenberg then told Officers that her fiancé, Julio Gonzalez, was driving the truck when he crashed at Buhne and “I” streets. She said that Gonzalez was at their home a few blocks away. Officers were unsuccessful in contacting Gonzalez that night and he was determined to have a suspended driver’s license.
Officers spoke with Gonzalez a couple days later. He told the officers that he was driving home when he fell asleep and crashed the truck. He said he left the scene because he has a suspended driver’s license.
The investigating officer will submit a report to the District Attorney’s Office requesting the following charges:
Mr. Gonzalez to be charged with Hit and Run, Driving while Suspended, and Conspiracy to Commit a Crime.
Ms. Eisenberg to be charged with Delaying / Obstructing Peace Officer, Providing False Information to a Peace Officer, and Conspiracy to Commit a Crime.
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Lost in Shelter Cove
The lost motorist was able to call 911 and ask for assistance.
CHP dispatched officers out to the area of the motorist using the cell phone GPS coordinates. Officers attempted to locate the motorist for over two hours driving on roads in the area near the coordinates provided, sounding their sirens and horns.
When CHP efforts failed to locate the motorist the Sheriff’s Office was notified at 4:00 am.
A search and rescue was initiated. Search and Rescue deputies responded to the area and located the motorists at 11:00 am in the 5000 block of Paradise Ridge road behind a locked gate.
The lost motorist had driven around the gate and became stuck in the roadway. The motorists were in a sport utility vehicle and identified as Marlene Elias, 27-years-old from Sausalito, and Michael Breen, 25-years-old from Hayward, California.
Both were in good health. HCSO deputies gave them a ride to Garberville to arrange for a tow truck to retrieve their vehicle.
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More Traffic Accidents, as Reported by the Friendly California Highway Patrol
ORICK– On March 31, 2013, at approximately 11:37 am, Mr. Johnson was driving a Toyota pickup southbound on US 101, north of Davidson Rd. at an unsafe speed, while negotiating a curve in the roadway. Mr. Hall was traveling northbound in a Ford pickup at a speed of 30 MPH. Due to the unsafe speed Mr. Johnson was traveling, he failed to maintain his vehicle in the southbound lane.
Mr. Johnson’s vehicle crossed over the solid double yellow lines and into the northbound lane directly in front of Mr. Hall’s Ford pickup. Mr. Hall was unable to stop in time avoid a collision. The front of the Mr. Hall’s Ford pickup struck the right side of Mr. Johnson’s Toyota pickup. Both vehicles came to rest in the northbound lane. Traffic was restricted to one way travel for approximately one hour until the northbound lane could be cleared.
Emergency personnel from the Orick Volunteer Fire Department, Cal Fire, Mad River Ambulance, California State and Federal Parks Service and California Highway Patrol responded to the scene. Ms. Hall was transported to Mad River Community Hospital for her injuries.
This collision is still under investigation by the California Highway Patrol. Impairment was not believed to be a factor.
CARLOTTA– On 03/31/2013, at approximately 1:20 pm, Mr. Oclair was driving a Toyota Tacoma pickup eastbound on SR 36, east of Grizzly Creek Campground at an unknown speed. Mr. Oclair claimed he fell asleep while driving and allowed his vehicle to travel off the south side of the road.
Mr. Oclair’s vehicle became airborne when it traveled off a steep embankment and impacted a large redwood tree. His vehicle then fell to the ground and landed on its left side.
Mr. Oclair’s passenger, Joshua Burge, exited the vehicle and climbed up the embankment and onto the highway, where he summoned a passing motorist for help.
Emergency personnel from the Carlotta Volunteer Fire Department, Bridgeville Volunteer Fire Department, City Ambulance and California Highway Patrol responded to the scene. Mr. Oclair and his passenger, Joshua Burge were transported to Redwood Memorial Hospital for their injuries.
This collision is still under investigation by the California Highway Patrol. Impairment was not a factor.
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Rubber Bullets (or were they Bean Bags?) and Tree-Sit Removals
More of the details of what happened is carried in the Willits News.
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Another day, another crime. Or two.
Buckle up, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride.