98.17% of us are suddenly stricken with Extreme voter remorse

On June 3rd, Mike Downey was re-elected to Sheriff after running unopposed, with 98% of those who voted approving of him for another 4 years.

Yesterday, reports from the Times-Standard and Lost Coast Outpost detailed what we might be dealing with cash and methduring Downey’s term. According to the reports, Larry Gene Blake and Alfonso Yanez-Espana were arrested for drug related charges, including possession of Methamphetamine for sale. Yanez-Espana allegedly had a kilo (2.2 lbs) of meth and $35,000 in cash in his possession. Both were transported to the County Jail where they were booked and released to to “overcrowding”.

That’s right, folks. In today’s Humboldt you can possess kilo sized quantities of Methamphetamine and not have to worry about being lodged in the jail or having to bail out. But why?

According to the Sheriff’s Office, when the jail hit’s “a certain number” then they use a matrix to determine who will stay in jail, and who will go. Apparently, selling pounds of meth doesn’t get a suspect held. What is that “certain number”? Sheriff Downey didn’t say. However, the Examiner received inside information that the jail has two types of “maximum” capacity. The first type is the “hard maximum”, which basically means that by law and physical layout the jail can’t hold any more suspects. The second is a “soft maximum”, which is the point in which all the beds are filled, but there would be room to put out numerous beds on the floor inside the dormitories to hold more suspects (each dorm can put out a number of these “boats”, but they rarely, if ever do).

revolving doorAccording to the source, most suspects are released when the jail is at the “soft maximum” level, meaning that they could have been held if the HCSO wanted to. We don’t know whether that was the case with Yanez-Espana, but it’s a question that should be answered by Downey.

According to the Times-Standard, Correctional Officer Tom Wattle said that Yanez-Espana and Blake’s charges were “misdemeanors” and their was no room to hold “misdemeanors”. That is an outright lie. They were both arrested for felonies according to the Sheriffs own booking sheet which is published online.

Lt. Dean Flint from the jail went a step further. According to him, if “we have a possession charge and a rape charge, we don’t want to have to question who to choose”. Sounds fair enough. There must have been people charged with rape entering the jail that day, right? Wrong, according to the booking sheet for 06/05.

Obviously the Jail must be full (or what they like to call full) of dangerous criminals, especially violent felons and rapists. We looked at the daily roster for 06/05, and found the following “serious” criminals taking up the space that these Meth dealers could have been placed into:

ANGHILANTE, PAUL JOSEPH-Theft and Marijuana related charges. In jail since May 30th.

BASZLER, KENNETH ELDOR-Sentenced to 22 days for Probation Violation and driving with a suspended D.L.

BECKER, DAKOTA REED-Theft and Trespassing charges. In jail since May 25th.

BRANNON, TYREL GERRAD-CDC prisoner and witness in Humboldt Case. In since May 1st.

We decided to stop writing names after “B”. But we encourage Examiner readers to  go to this link to find out more information, especially regarding who is released back into the community after being arrested for serious charges: http://co.humboldt.ca.us/sheriff/reports/.

As you look at the list, you see several suspects who are in jail with pending charges for theft related offenses. You’ll also notice that there are folks serving out short jail sentences for driving without a valid license. Where is the common sense? How can it be that someone whose stealing to support an addiction is more “jail worthy” than somebody selling kilo sized amounts of a dangerous drug like meth?

We know the system is hemorrhaging due to the amount of crime in this county, mixed with the states

A Legacy of Incompetency and Corruption

A Legacy of Incompetency and Corruption

re-alignment of prisoners. Sheriff Downey and the Board of Supervisor’s know this as well. So…..when are they going to do something about it? The Examiner hasn’t heard any solutions being offered, just a lot of excuses.

Sheriff Downey and the BOS, the hand wringing needs to stop. It’s time to solicit ideas and come up with some solutions. Otherwise, this really will end up being the lawless County of Humboldt.




42 thoughts on “98.17% of us are suddenly stricken with Extreme voter remorse

  1. The Sheriff and the Board of Supervisors have known about AB 190 and the ill effects for years. They have done nothing with regards to trying to find constructive ways to move forward. Here’s a story from Red Bluff, where they started planning for the repercussions years ago:


    Not sayin’ that they’re a model to copy. But at least the leaders in that area out together committee’s to try and bring forth some ideas to move forward. What has Downey done? Or, for that matter, the head of Probation William Damiano?


  2. This is only a guess. Do they predict what they think a sentencing outcome/plea deal would be, knowing Gallegos’ office.


  3. Another thing. Of the cases listed above, I think since Baszler has already been sentenced- for a PV – can’t just let him out or probation becomes meaningless. Bannon? Release a witness? Hmm. Seems to me that if they made the choice to book someone and several days later a much worse case came up, they might have to catch-and- release some people based on that. It


    • How about leave the witness in state custody until needed for trial. I would think a drive to prison to pick up a witness from state custody is cheaper than housing someone for 2 months in county jail. It also free’s up a bed for, perhaps, a dope dealer arrested for selling pounds of meth!

      And yes, probation should have consequences. But on a scale of criminality, given limited resources, should driving with a suspended license be given greater priority than selling pounds of meth? How about someone who stole a tv from target to feed a drug habit? How about the female I saw on the list who was serving time for two theft charges, one of which was petty theft under $50? I don’t think so, but I could be wrong.


  4. * It is heartbreaking that they finally catch a meth dealer and let him go. I’m going to say I hope Fleming changes this because if I was going to drive around committing crimes and I had the money, I too would carry $35,000 just in case. Just sayin.


    • Fleming will have absolutely no say in such matters. The Sheriff runs the jail, not the DA.

      If a DA were to intervene on cases like this all she would get for her troubles would be a politely worded memo to MYOB.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Fleming will have absolutely no say in such matters. The Sheriff runs the jail, not the DA.“.

        I’m not sure, but I wouldn’t be surprised if either the probation dept or the D.A. has some pull in it. When I worked at juvenile hall, overcrowding release decisions were handled by by a probation officer- the Intake Officer, I believe. We’d regularly be given a list of 2 to 4 detainees that would be released if we needed room.

        Some of you may recall the saga of a career car thief back during the tenure of Terry Farmer when he was DA. Guy was a serial car thief. He’d get arrested, be released because there wasn’t enough room in jail, then go right out and steal another car. It made the Times- Standard.

        Finally, the powers- that- be went to the judge and insisted the guy needed to be held rather than released. They prevailed and that’s the last I remember hearing of him. Hmmm??? Maybe there’s a judge that decides who stays and goes?


    • Fred:

      Perhaps. But I imagine that we are talking extreme cases where the Jail Personnel just plain get it wrong and it raises a stink.

      In the bureaucratic world you are only allowed just so many stinks per year so you have to spend them wisely.


  5. It’s a tough call deciding who stays in jail and who goes, I should think. Heck, might seem like a toss of a coin sometimes. I don’t envy those in the position that make those decisions. I’m certainly not going to criticize them unless I have a better idea how to handle the situation myself.


    • Right Fred. Just let those in power make the decisions without critism or input from the public. Great idea!

      Liked by 3 people

    • I think meth possession trumps driving on a suspended license.

      Liked by 3 people

    • “I think meth possession trumps driving on a suspended license.”

      You might think so now, but if that person ended up killing someone, as happened in Sonoma County in the last few years, you’d be wondering why the girl was out driving around after being cited four times prior to the fatal accident while driving unlicensed. As I recall, that girl pretty much got probation with credit for time served.

      I’m actually not arguing she should have gotten a stronger sentence. I’m just pointing out there’s always somebody that’s going to want one person or another in jail, while someone else thinks they’re not as big a threat to the public.

      If someone is a career petty thief, I’d want him behind bars as long as possible. Does he stay in jail, or do you keep the meth dealer? There’s not be enough room for both. It’s a juggling act. Whad’ya gonna do? We’ll all have different opinions as to who goes and who stays. I’m not going to criticize those faced with making the decisions.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Well, I suppose it depends on who is handling the case. Firpo got 10 years for Brian Christopher Fleming for dealing meth. From Loco:

    “Mr. Fleming’s ongoing sales of methamphetamines, even While out on bail, make him a continued danger to the community. Countless individuals are lost to addiction every year nationwide and it’s important for those supplying dangerous chemicals to be held accountable. Thank you to EPD for their thorough investigation and efforts to make our community a safer place.” Elan Firpo, Deputy District Attorney, handling attorney.


  7. I don’t think it’s a stretch to think it might be a better idea to release pot growers, petty thieves and unlicensed drivers and keep major meth dealers locked up, especially since stealing to buy their product is a main cause of theft and their product makes people crazy and violent.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Orick—“Supervisor Sundberg said he understands residents’ concerns, but said that most of the issues were being brought to his attention for the first time.”


    “If we get a clear directive, we can flesh that out in our board meetings and see what direction we need to take,” said Sundberg. He also said he understands frustrations over reductions in law enforcement presence but said that, at least for now, funds are just not available. “It’s been five years of budget cuts. [The Sheriff’s Office] is down, I think, 18 deputies.”

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The DA does gets to give input through Deputy DAs. Probation gets a say if the case gets to that point. In this case, TE pointed the blame to the right party.

    Many factors go into who stays and who is released. Fleming can tell her Deputy DAs to oppose release of individuals. Plea deals do occur, probation has input. Fleming can change Paul’s lets make a deal policy.

    Tuluwat Examiner staff make good points.

    With Paul’s brilliant rotating DA management decision, one Deputy DA can be in court, make a plea and some other unlucky DDA can show up the day the criminal is sentenced and be accused of being soft.

    Paul cannot leave soon enough.


    • Not meant as doubting you… but are you saying that before the Meth Wholesalers were released their release was vetted by the DA’s office?

      Is that the routine?


  10. No, I am not saying that MOLA 42. What I am saying is that in general, who gets released is not just up to the jail.

    TE should keep the same pressure on DA’s office and Probation.


  11. Seems to me there no legal understanding here or you’re just law and order authoritarians.

    This isn’t a police state where people can simply be jailed for suspicion. Do you understand the right to a writ of habeus corpus and presumption of innocence?

    Is the angst here over the guy with kilo of meth not having to post bail? Do you have knowledge that he likely won’t show up for a court date? If he had been arraigned, allowed to post bail, and been released would that have been OK?

    Suspects can be held in jail after arrest for only 48 hours for a court hearing on the merits of the arresting complaint.(Oh yeah, there’s a special exception for ‘drunk tank’). Police always have the option of just issuing a court summons and so does the jailer.


    • Good point. I felt the same way after all the outcry over the guy that killed Father Freed. Should people be held in jail- assuming they have the room- until trial?


    • Good points. All the local folks on trial for murder, or anything else, should be released from jail. They haven’t been convicted, so the only reason to hold them would be “authoritarian” rule by the local corrupt citizens. Let the accused murderers free with a promise to appear, without bail!

      You’re an idiot NAN.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Non- issue. All the accused are given a court date and are often required to come up with bail money. Never mind serious offenders that generally are held for at least a preliminary hearing.


    • I forgot to add that Fred offers up a lot of opinions on this subject even though he wrote:

      I’m certainly not going to criticize them unless I have a better idea how to handle the situation myself.

      You don’t have any ideas Fred, but you sure are quick to offer up excuses for local government mismanagement of tax dollars. Very libertarian of you.


    • So Fred thinks that selling pounds of meth isn’t a serious crime, but petty theft is? Thief’s held in custody for preliminary hearings and meth dealers get a ticket? Okay……….?

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Not a Native, any one can use fancy legal words. These people did not go through the court process. You do not get to decide who stays and who gets released. They were released due to overcrowding.

    They should have been arraigned, assessed in court whether they were a risk. Most of us who follow the law would prefer that meth heads who get addicted and get others addicted do not get off the hook.

    You NAN have no clue about who commits crimes or why. Fred, under the new policy, Bullock would not have been released. You both are the problem why Paul was in office for so long.

    In your opinion, we need to have no consequences for people who break the law. What do you think these two were doing with the meth? Donating their time to the good of the community?

    Maybe NAN and Fred would like these two to stay with them until their day in court?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sick, sick, sick. So much for the civil rights of the accused. Thanx for showing us that the Left is just as much- if not more- dismissive of people’s rights as you accuse the Right of being.


    • Fred-

      You are Republican in libertarian clothing. It would be sad to see your professed party gain power and you had to actually work instead of collect a government check.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Well Gee no con… You’re so sure in your righteousness and so ready to judge without facts. Well the fact is the meth guy is out among us right now. I’m not worried but I can just imagine you’re cowering in bed clutching a gun, afraid for your life. Hide, hide, he’s among us and coming to murder us, kill our children and rape our women….Or are you joining a preemptive vigilante street sweeper strike?


    • He probably isn’t a direct threat. He is just a sociopath selling the product that makes his hundreds of customers crazy and violent, No problem, right?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Some think the same thing about pot growers and dealers.

        So lets say we get a whole bunch of meth dealers behind bars. Is that gonna stop the problem, or will it just make it more expensive so people have to steal more stuff to buy meth?

        I don’t know what the answer is. It is odd that even amongst some who want to decriminalize drugs the arguments for decriminalizing other drugs are tossed aside with methamphetamine.

        But we digress, don’t we? This argument is being carried out in today’s Times- Standard with the one comment to the story I saw seeming to complain that the guys involved in the stealing of burl slabs from national forest are kept in jail while two meth dealers aren’t. Which would you choose to keep in jail?


  14. Does any sane person think pot makes people crazy and violent?

    I would have to say the burl thieves could be put on house arrest with ankle bracelets. That wouldn’t stop the meth dealer.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Fred is just a contrary right-wing Republican. He listen too much to his neighbor Mark Matteoli.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Okay, I guess it’s up to me to state out loud what we have been dancing around:

    Why did the Jail release without bail two persons who were obviously Meth Wholesalers? Because overcrowding, despite Fred’s and other’s acceptance, is NOT the reason… there were plenty of candidates for release ahead of these two major cogs in the distribution of meth network.

    Even folks doing “time” could be released and told to come back and finish their sentences later.

    I think there are two real possibilities (though no doubt someone with a creative imagination could come up with more):

    First: Corruption: They let Meth Wholesalers loose because they had “Get Out of Jail Free Cards” of one sort or another. They paid their way out. I don’t much like this option and I dearly hope it is not true but it would not be the first time that money has “deodorized” the dirty and set them free.

    Second: They are really Feds doing a “Fast and Furious” version of meth dealing and got themselves caught by the locals. It’s easy enough to hide letting such people go in a big city but this kind of thing stands out here. The Sheriff’s department just did an extremely poor job of explaining their actions while trying not to blow two DEA agent’s cover.

    If that’s the case then their cover was blown when they were released the way they were. If I were the Meth Wholesaler’s boss, I certainly would not accept the explanation Fred and others have been offering (so no, I didn’t blow their cover by talking about it).

    I prefer number two myself.


  17. Well Jane has expressed the situation honesty, this guy isn’t any more a imminent threat to the community than others who are given summons to appear. You could even argue that since he lost his stash, he has nothing to sell now. And he had no guns, in contrast with most arrested for drug violations and held in jail because of that aggravating indicator of violent intent.

    The reason for this outcry is explained accurately by (gulp)Fred. And I’ll go a little further. In order to rebut accusations they are simply druggies who celebrate any altered state, pot advocates put forth drugs they are in favor of banning. They’ve made meth their whipping boy. And that isn’t random because their view of the social class of meth users is similar to the view pot prohibitionists have of the social class of pot users. The prejudice just rolls downhill. As far as Mola’s theories, pfffft. He’s as whacked out as Truthers and Birthers.


  18. Fred: “I don’t know what the answer is.”

    Well, that’s refreshing honesty.

    As far as I can tell, society has offered up two answers. The conservatives have increased prison sizes, law enforcement funding, and the pay rate of “corrections officers,” a euphemism Orwell would have loved. They also want to make sure illegal brown people don’t get to live amongst us, and want to prevent kids from eating, because that will sure get criminal parents to find a nonexistent job. The fact that none of these things have shown any evidence of touching the problem is politely ignored.

    The progressives, mainly, want to increase funding for those without work and continue to increase the size of social welfare bureaucracies, and treat drug offenders medically rather than through that cleverly named “corrections” system. These things haven’t worked either, but the standard progressive argument is that we haven’t done enough of them.

    While I’m really sympathetic to the progressive arguments, with the exception of dumping more bad money after good into the failed social welfare bureaucracies, I’ve got to admit I think the problem goes far deeper, and the solution, if it is to be found, is a more radical change in our spiritual, political and economic system.

    Young people in particular are not blind to hypocrisy. Any young person looking around can see a society that worships wealth, and is more than willing to try to remove all dignity from someone without money.

    Young people are expected to go to school to be trained for system jobs. People go to jobs and receive “compensation” — a word well worth studying. At their jobs, for an increasing number of people an increasing amount of the time, their purpose is to transfer money from people with a bit to people with a lot. We are supposed to worship job creators, but young people with any sense of self-worth have noticed that work has lost its moral core, which is best described by the quaint phrase “contributing to society.” We’ve now seen for at least two generations that what formerly contributed to society is now destroying the planet in the name of greed. That’s before you even GET to the self-serving nature of many captains of industry and their political puppets.

    As the system has perfected itself, the liberation of women was transmuted into a requirement for 80 hours of “compensated” work from every two adults, where formerly the requirement had been for 40 hours of “compensated” work. That is an unvarnished view of our system, and it’s as straightforward and obvious as geometry or algebra.

    So you’re a young person living in a dysfunctional society. It’s teachers, bless them, still try to convince you that you are of value and have inherent dignity and worth. You look at the way the larger society treats people, and you see the opposite. You look for solace. You turn to mind altering substances.

    There will always be a small percentage of people who naturally rely on mind altering substances to get by. But not the epidemic levels that we’ve created. That’s due to our spiritual, political, and economic crisis. And the epidemic will NEVER be resolved until we learn that and act on it. And that’s, alas, going to be messy and doesn’t offer much of a prognosis for cure. But if there’s a fight worth fighting, that’s it. Not adding ten “social workers” to some piggish bureaucrat’s empire. That empire exists only because we are too lazy to do the work ourselves.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. I’d say its unlikely this guy will get more contraband for awhile. They seized his money so he’s lost the capital to replenish his supply. Getting credit will be hard because he’s been charged and suppliers will be wary of being named in exchange for reduced penalties. And I doubt a bank will make him an inventory loan.

    In other threads people rail against prohibition because just being charged with trafficking ‘ruins lives’. Of course they’re looking for sympathy only for people they like. But if you accept that argument, then this guy’s life will be ‘ruined’ too.


    • Whether or not he can get more product and is selling it now is something neither you nor I know. He may be cooking up a batch as we argue.

      I couldn’t care less about ruining the lives of sociopaths who ruin other people’s lives, destroy families and fuel an increase in violence and crime.

      Liked by 1 person

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