Sacto 9-1-1
October 31, 2013
UPDATE: Sacramento police officer injured investigating report of reckless driver

A Sacramento police officer was injured this evening in a struggle with a motorist who had reportedly been seen driving erratically in the south Sacramento area.

Sacramento police spokesman Officer Doug Morse said officers observed the hazardous and reckless driving in the area of Detroit Boulevard and Laurie Way about 5:48 p.m.

Police stopped the vehicle and, as the occupants of the car were being detained, the driver struggled with officers. One of the officers was injured during the struggle.

Morse said the injury was not life-threatening. The officer was transported to an area hospital for treatment.

The suspect was taken into custody without further incident.

October 31, 2013
Six area residents indicted in federal drug trafficking case

A federal grand jury in Sacramento today returned an indictment charging six residents of Sutter, Yuba and Sacramento counties with trafficking methamphetamine.

Charged in the multicount indictment are Hector Castaneda, 37, and Jose Amador, 26, of Yuba City; Javier Castro, 26, Refugio Montoya, 41, and Hemant Solanki, 46, of Sacramento; and Stacy Miller, 46, of Marysville, according to a federal Department of Justice news release.

According to court documents, between October 2012 and Oct. 17, 2013, Drug Enforcement Administration and Yuba Sutter Narcotics Enforcement Task Force officers investigated alleged large-scale methamphetamine trafficking by Hector Castaneda in the Yuba City area. The Drug Enforcement Administration obtained multiple court-authorized wiretaps and learned that Castaneda's organization included suppliers in the Sacramento area, as well as a network of distributors in Yuba City and the Sacramento area.

October 31, 2013
Body found in Nevada County identified as that of missing miner

stever.jpgThe Nevada County Sheriff's Department has confirmed that the body found by searchers Wednesday in the Yuba River Canyon was that of missing miner Walter Steever.

Undersheriff Joe Salivar said an autopsy to determine the cause of death could be completed by Friday morning. There were no signs of foul play, he said, and it appears that Steever, 65, died of natural causes.

Steever left his home in San Jose to work his Nevada County mining claim on Oct. 23. He failed to return home and his wife contact authorities Monday.

October 31, 2013
Sacramento man accused of stealing landscaping equipment in Davis

A Sacramento man has been arrested on suspicion of grand theft in connection with several thefts of landscaping equipment in Davis in recent months.

Between Aug. 27 and Oct. 15, Davis police took nine reports of incidents involving someone stealing equipment from landscaping companies, resulting in significant losses to the firms.

Similar thefts occurred on the UC Davis campus and in Woodland, according to a Davis Police Department news release.

Police identified a possible suspect and today, with the assistance of he Sacramento County Sheriff's Office, they executed multiple search warrants in Sacramento County. Omar Zavala, 18, was subsequently arrested and booked into Yolo County Jail.

October 31, 2013
Two men arrested after marijuana found in vehicle at I-5 rest stop

Two men were arrested at an Interstate 5 rest stop in Yolo County after 30 pounds of marijuana reportedly were found in their vehicle.

About 8:20 a.m. Wednesday, a Yolo County sheriff's deputy contacted the two men, who were in a vehicle parked at the southbound Tony Diaz Memorial Rest Stop along I-5. The deputy detected a strong odor of marijuana coming from the inside and rear bed of the vehicle. A search of the vehicle turned up several large duffel bags containing 30 1-pound bags of individually packaged marijuana and 21 non-prescribed Vicodin tablets, according to a Sheriff's Office news release.

Eric Martin Scott, 22, of San Jose, and Adam Gabriel Barrett, 26, of Lancaster, were arrested on suspicion of possessing marijuana, and offering to sell or furnish marijuana. Scott also is accused of possessing a controlled substance.

Both men were booked into the Yolo County Jail on Wednesday, and each was subsequently released on $50,000 bail. They are to be arraigned in Yolo County Superior Court on Nov. 27.

October 31, 2013
Update: Citrus Heights police identify suspect shot by officers

Citrus Heights police have identified the suspect shot by officers this morning as Panogiotis Eliopoulos, and said he is in critical condition at a local hospital.

Citrus Heights police said the shooting followed reports that Eliopoulos, 29, had threatened people with a knife and then charged officers. They said he was found with two knives.

Police said the incident began about 9:15 a.m. when the department received multiple calls about a man armed with knife inside a home on the 7900 block of Oak Avenue.

The man was said to be threatening people with the weapon, said Lt. Ryan Kinnan. While officers were heading to the scene, police got follow-up calls to say the man had fled the first home and forced his way into a second occupied residence.

October 31, 2013
FBI finds Sacramento attempted murder suspect in Mexico

The FBI has turned over to Sacramento police an attempted murder suspect who they said had fled to Mexico.

Jose Manuel Aguilera, 21, formerly of Citrus Heights, was turned over to police Tuesday evening to face charges after being located by the Federal Bureau of Investigation agents in Queretaro, Mexico.

He was found in Queretaro, in central Mexico, this fall, less than a year after the issuance of a federal arrest warrant for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. Aguilera was booked into Sacramento County Jail.

Police said he is a suspect in a Aug. 27, 2011 gang-related shooting at a home in the 2800 block of 14th Avenue. A police log entry at the time said that two people came to the alley behind the home late that night.

"Occupants of the home engaged the suspects with gang signs and heated dialogue," according to the log entry.

One or both of the unwanted visitors began shooting. One person at the home was hit by gunfire.

The shooters then ran off. Police said at the time that the incident may have been related to an altercation across the street at a gas station, which happened just before the shooting.

October 31, 2013
Update: Power Inn traffic fatality was down on roadway when hit

The California Highway Patrol reports that a man who appeared to by lying or crawling in the roadway was hit and killed by a vehicle this morning in southern Sacramento County.

At about 5 a.m. today, the man was observed to be down in the roadway when he was struck by a vehicle heading northbound on Power Inn Road at Scottsdale Drive. The driver tried to avoid hitting the man but could not.

A second vehicle, possibly a red or brown pickup truck, also stopped at the scene and may have also hit the man, according to the CHP. The driver of the pickup briefly stopped but then drove away. The CHP wants to speak with the pickup driver.

The driver who initially struck the man was interviewed at the scene and released. No charges are pending against that motorist.

The man who was hit was either dragged or propelled about 75 feet north of the intersection. He died at the scene.

The CHP is seeking witnesses to the traffic incident. Call (916) 681-2300 if you can help.

October 30, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 Crime Q&A: Was anyone arrested for 1990s slaying of social worker at her Orangevale home?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: Back in the mid '90s, my good friend Carol Blake was killed when she opened her front door in her house in Orangevale. I have not been able to find anything in the last 10 years about the case and whether it was solved.
Submitted by: Tish, Orangevale

ANSWER: The May 20, 1996, slaying of 45-year old Carol Blake at her home on Wild Horse Court in Orangevale remains unsolved.

October 30, 2013
Report of illegal weapons leads to store employee's arrest

PARK,+JOHN-51.jpgCane swords and metal knuckles.jpgAn employee of a North Sacramento business was arrested Tuesday after Sacramento police and code enforcement officers responded to a community complaint that the shop was selling prohibited weapons.

On Sept. 10, police officers along with members of the city's Code Compliance Division, inspected the U-Save Smoke Shop at 2525 Del Paso Blvd. During the inspection, they discovered several brass/metal knuckles (pictured) on display for sale, according to a Police Department news release. Also displayed for sale were multiple "cane swords" (pictured).

The investigation led Tuesday to issuance of an arrest warrant and the arrest of store employee John Park (pictured), 51. Park is accused of possession of a cane sword and possession of metal knuckles.

The cane swords and metal knuckles were confiscated and booked as evidence, police said.

October 30, 2013
Man admits stealing dead child's identity to seek U.S. passport

A Mexican national previously deported from the United States pleaded guilty today in federal court in Sacramento to one count of aggravated identity theft after stealing the identity of a deceased child to fraudulently seek a U.S. passport.

Rafael Ortega Zarate, 69, was living in Sacramento and committed the crime while making a false statement in his passport application, according to a federal Department of Justice news release.

According to court documents, Zarate was illegally living in the United States and was previously deported in 1962 and 1963. In October 2012, he presented an application for a U.S. passport to a passport acceptance officer in Sacramento, falsely representing, among other things, that his name was "Ernesto Zarate Ortega" and that he was a United States citizen by birth.

October 30, 2013
Motorcyclist dies on transition curve from Highway 50

A motorcyclist died from his injuries suffered when his vehicle hit a highway guardrail Tuesday in Sacramento.

The Sacramento County Coroner's Office identified the motorcyclist as William Maxwell Puckett, 31, of Sacramento.

The California Highway Patrol said that at about 11 a.m. Tuesday Puckett was traveling from eastbound Highway 50 to northbound Capital City Freeway when his motorcycle failed to negotiate the curve and hit a guardrail, according to a preliminary investigation.

He suffered fatal injuries and died at the scene.

October 30, 2013
Coroner identifies South Sacramento auto-pedestrian fatality

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of a pedestrian who was struck and killed by a car Monday in the Parkway neighborhood.

She was identified as Rita Ann Moye, 47, of Sacramento. Moye was walking on Brookfield Drive between Franklin Boulevard and Mack Road around 6:30 a.m. Monday when she was hit by a sedan, according to Sacramento police.

She died at the scene. The motorist, who was eastbound on Brookfield Drive when Moye was struck, waited at the scene for the arrival of police.

October 30, 2013
Big Ben gives grant to Sacramento PD for police dog

Ben Roethlisberger has given money to the Sacramento Police Department for the purchase and training of a new police dog, according to the NFL player's foundation website.

The grant to the Sacramento department mirrors other donations the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation has made to police and fire department canine units in cities near where the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback plays away games. Last Sunday the Steelers played the Raiders in Oakland.

The foundation said that Sacramento will use the grant to purchase and train Rex, a 17-month-old Belgian Malinois. Rex will be teamed with Officer Aaron Thompson.

"We are extremely appreciative that the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation chose to honor our K-9 Unit with a grant toward the purchase and training of the newest member of our department, K-9 Rex," said Sacramento Police Sgt. Steve Oliveira.

The foundation invited police and fire departments across the country to submit grant requests.

It is the seventh season that Roehlisberger's foundation has bestowed grants to police and fire departments to acquire and train dogs. The foundation distributed $135,000 in grants around the country last season to canine units.

October 30, 2013
UPDATE: Body found in Nevada County search for missing miner

stever.jpgSearch crews looking for a missing miner in Nevada County's Yuba River Canyon area have found a body, but a sheriff's spokeswoman said an official identification has not been made.

She said the body was found about midday in the general area of Owl Creek Road and the South Yuba River, where 65-year-old Walter Steever's vehicle was found.

Steever left his San Jose home to work his Nevada County mining claim on Oct. 23. He failed to return home and his wife contacted authorities Monday.

Several agencies, including some from the Bay Area joined today in the ground and air search for Steever, according to a Nevada County sheriff's deputy.

Bee reporter Cathy Locke contributed to this report.

October 29, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 Crime Q&A: What happened to suspect in '90s slaying of mother, teens?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: In the early to mid-90s I remember a story that had me fearing strangers as a young kid. There was a man who abducted a woman and two or three children. Their vehicle was discovered later in the forest, burned, with the family in the trunk. Is the convicted killer still alive?
Submitted by:Anonymous, Southport

ANSWER: You may be referring to the brutal slaying of three Yosemite sightseers in 1999.

October 29, 2013
Funeral account established for family killed in Lodi crash

A fund has been established to help cover funeral expenses for five members of a family killed in a traffic collision in Lodi last week.

In a statement issued through the Consulate General of Mexico in Sacramento, Felipe Miranda announced that the account has been established with BBVA Compass bank. Donations may be made through bank branches to the Miranda Family Funeral Account, No. 10877761.

Felipe Miranda's brother, Luis Miranda, 32, was killed Oct. 22 along with Luis' pregnant wife, Viviana Rodriguez, 31. Also killed in the crash were three of their four children: Irving, 12, Jose, 6, and Stephanie, 5. The other child, 9-year-old Eden, survived and was listed in critical condition after the crash.

October 29, 2013
Davis police seek suspect in attempted sexual assault

Davis police seek to find a man who reportedly tried to sexually assault a woman as she was returning to her residence Tuesday night.

The incident occurred about 10:30 p.m. in the 600 block of Alvarado Avenue near Anderson Road. The woman was returning to her residence and parked her vehicle in the parking lot. After retrieving her belongings from the vehicle, she was confronted by a man who pushed her back toward the vehicle, according to a Police Department news release.

Once they reached the vehicle, the man attempted to sexually assault the woman, police said.

October 29, 2013
Elk Grove police warn of motorist trying to lure teenagers

The Elk Grove Police Department is warning residents to beware of a man who reportedly tried to lure teenagers to his vehicle on at least four occasions in recent weeks.

The first incident occurred at 2:30 p.m. Oct. 12 as a 13-year-old boy was walking in the area of Darley Way and Toscano Drive. A vehicle pulled up next to him, and the male driver attempted to engage the boy in conversation. When the boy did not respond, the man drove away, according to a Police Department news release.

The next two incidents occurred Oct. 16. At 10 a.m., a 13-year-old girl was walking in the area of Whitelock Parkway and Schuler Ranch Road when a vehicle pulled up next to her. The driver attempted to engage her in conversation, and when the girl continued walking, the vehicle pulled ahead of her into a parking lot, police said. The girl then turned around and ran away.

October 29, 2013
Colfax girl struck by vehicle while walking to school

A 13-year-old Colfax girl suffered moderate injuries this morning when she was struck by a vehicle while crossing the street on her way to school.

The teen was walking from a private driveway about 8:45 a.m. and began crossing West Weimar Cross Road, directly in front of Weimar Hills School, according to a California Highway Patrol news release. There is no crosswalk at this location, and CHP officials said Hawkins entered the roadway directly in front of a northbound 1997 Saturn Wagon driven by 20-year-old Casey Stillford of Colfax.

The vehicle struck the girl, who was transported by ambulance to Sutter Roseville Medical Center.

The CHP reported that the collision is under investigation, but neither drugs nor alcohol was involved.

October 29, 2013
Fire damages building on El Dorado County high school campus

Classes for students enrolled in cosmetology and dental programs were canceled today after a fire damaged a building housing the El Dorado Union High School District's Regional Occupational Program.

Administrators on the Shenandoah High School campus on Koki Lane in the community of El Dorado discovered the fire just before 9 a.m. today in the ROP cosmetology building and called the fire department, according to a district news release. No staff members or students were present at the time of the fire.

In addition to the cosmetology program, the Shenandoah site includes multiple buildings that house the district's Virtual Academy, ROP dental program and the AP computer science classroom.

October 29, 2013
Trucker dies in Feather River Canyon accident

Jane Braxton Little
Bee Correspondent

QUINCY - A tractor-trailer truck heading east in the Feather River Canyon early Tuesday morning hit a rock in the roadway and jackknifed, killing the driver and starting a fire.

The driver of the 2003 Freightliner ruptured a fuel tank after he lost control of his truck, said California Highway Patrolman Blair Parrott.

The truck was fully engulfed in flames, trapping the driver inside. He was pronounced dead at the scene, Parrott said.

The fire damaged the roadway, resulting in a complete closure of state Highway 70 four miles west of Belden for nearly nine hours, said Trisha Corder, a Caltrans spokeswoman.

Caltrans reopened the highway at noon.

The victim's name has been withheld pending notification of his relatives.

October 29, 2013
Roseville shootout suspect charged with 7 counts of attempted murder


By Bill Lindelof and Ed Fletcher

Seven counts of attempted murder and other charges were filed today against Samuel Nathan Duran, the suspect in a lengthy recent shootout and standoff with law enforcement in Roseville.

Duran made a brief court appearance this afternoon, where he was assigned a public defender. The suspect was scheduled for arraignment at 1:30 p.m., but the proceeding was delayed until Friday at the request of his newly assigned attorney. It is expected that Duran will enter a plea at that time.

Duran allegedly wounded six law enforcement officers before being taken into custody early Saturday.

Duran, 32, was charged in a complaint with seven counts of attempted murder of a peace officer, and seven counts of assault with a semi-automatic firearm on a peace officer.

October 29, 2013
Fundraiser set for family displaced by Roseville shootout

A fundraiser is scheduled for Wednesday to benefit a young family displaced after a suspect holed up in their residence during a standoff with police.

Gary Wunder said that proceeds from a barbecue and drink sales at his Country Club Saloon, 4007 Taylor Road, in Loomis, will go to the couple and their small child. The fundraiser starts at 4:40 p.m. Wednesday.

The family has not been able to live in their rental home since a fleeing parolee entered the residence on Friday and engaged in a long, sporadic gun battle with police. The were able to escape.

October 29, 2013
Police need help finding killer of Citrus Heights man

Citrus Heights police are asking for the public's assistance in finding a man who struck and killed Christopher Sorgani.

Sorgani, 49, of Citrus Heights, died from injuries suffered in an attack last week. Police were called to the 7700 block of Greenback Lane at about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday where they found Sorgani on the sidewalk with serious head injuries.

A witness told police they saw Sorgani being struck by another man. The motive for the assault is not known.

Sorgani died from his injuires on Sunday. Anyone who has information about Sorgani's death may call police at (916) 727-5500.

October 29, 2013
Citrus Heights man identified as motorist killed on I-5

A Citrus Heights man was killed in an early morning crash on Interstate 5 in Yolo County over the weekend.

The Yolo County Coroner's office identified the man as 58-year-old Steven Carl Luth.

The California Highway Patrol said that Luth was traveling southbound on I-5 at the Yolo Bypass near County Road 22 about 1 a.m. Sunday when he lost control of his 1998 Mercury and hit a bridge railing.

The car then crossed both lanes and hit a bridge railing on the left side of the freeway. At some point Luth got out of his car, according to the CHP.

Around the same time, West Sacramento police officer stopped to render aide. Luth suffered fatal injuries when he was struck after exiting his vehicle during a series of collisions, according to a CHP.

The West Sacramento police squad car, Luth's car and two other cars were damaged. Four people in a Chevrolet suffered injuries.

The West Sacramento officer was transported to UC Davis Medical Center for precautionary reasons. The series of crashes is being investigated by the CHP.

October 28, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 Crime Q&A: What led to fatal shooting of deputy in 1979?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What are the details of the shooting death of Sacramento County Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Boone on Oct. 25, 1979? DetectiveBoone was posthumously awarded for the Sheriff's Deprtment Medal of Valor and the Sheriff' Department Facebook page has a post memorializing him.
Submitted by: Jerry K., Sacramento

ANSWER: Detective Christopher W. Boone, 31, was shot and killed while on a surveillancae assignment at the residence of a woman who had been the victim of a series of obscene and threatening phone calls.

October 28, 2013
Parole denied for man convicted of Yolo attempted murder

A man convicted of attempting to murder his estranged wife at her Knights Landing home in 2001 has been denied parole.

The Yolo County District Attorney's Office announced that a two-commissioner panel of the state Board of Parole Hearings on Thursday denied parole for Javiad Akhtar, determining he would pose a continued risk to public safety if he were released from prison.

In 2001, Akhtar, in violation of a restraining order, went to the home of his estranged wife and their two children, cut the phone line to the house and broke in through a side window. When his wife and children returned home, Akhtar came out of a back room and shot his wife with a BB gun as she tried to flee, according to a District Attorney's Office news release. Authorities said he struck her in the head with the gun, causing the gun to break.

October 28, 2013
Homicide charges expected in Lodi crash that killed five

By Sam Stanton and Bill Lindelof

LODI -- Police say they are pursuing murder charges in the vehicle crash last Tuesday that killed five members of a Lodi family, including a woman seven months pregnant, and left a 9-year-old boy orphaned and hospitalized.

Lodi Police Chief Mark Helms told reporters this morning that "this horrific event was not an accident" and that murder charges would be pursued against 28-year-old Ryan Christopher Morales, who is suspected of drunken driving in the incident.

Morales, who was recently released from prison, appears to be the only individual who was under the influence of alcohol in the wreck and could be charged with second-degree murder for each person killed, with a penalty of 15 years to life.

October 28, 2013
Fire at Lincoln lumber mill quelled

A three-alarm lumber mill fire was extinguished last night in Lincoln.

The fire at the Sierra Pacific Industries mill in 1400 block of Lincoln Boulevard was reported by plant security personnel at 10:40 p.m. Sunday. The first-arriving crews found fire in a large mezzanine above a lumber-drying kiln.

A fire sprinkler system kept the fire from spreading until it could be completely extinguished by firefighters. Firefighters from Rocklin, Roseville and Placer County Fire/Cal Fire helped Lincoln Fire Department control the blaze.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. The blaze is estimated by Lincoln Fire Department officials to have caused $75,000 in damage.

October 28, 2013
Another pedestrian hit and killed on Sacramento street

A pedestrian was struck and killed by a car this morning in the Parkway neighborhood of South Sacramento.

The 48-year-old woman was walking on Brookfield Drive between Franklin Boulevard and Mack Road around 6:30 a.m. Monday when she was hit by a sedan, according to Sacramento police.

Her name has not been released, pending notification of family. She died at the scene.

The motorist was eastbound on Brookfield Drive when the woman as struck. The driver waited at the scene for the arrival of police.

Several pedestrians and bicyclists have been killed in crashes in the past week on Sacramento streets.

October 28, 2013
Bicyclist in fatal Carmichael crash is identified

The name of the bicyclist who was struck and killed by a sport utility vehicle last week in Carmichael has been released by the Sacramento County Coroner's office.

Richard Aaron Leeper, 21, of Sacramento was pronounced dead at the scene of the collision at 8:05 p.m. Thursday on El Camino Avenue, near Laurence Avenue.

Leeper was traveling in the wrong direction on El Camino Avenue when he was hit by the oncoming SUV, said Officer Lizz Dutton, California Highway Patrol spokeswoman.

Leeper didn't have a headlight on his bicycle and wasn't wearing a helmet, according to Dutton.

October 28, 2013
Fairfield man identified as North Sacramento homicide victim

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of the Fairfield man shot to death at a Halloween party early Sunday in Sacramento.

The murder victim was identified as 29-year-old Keylen Jeff Ellis.

Ellis was shot to death and six others were injured in a drive-by shooting at the party in North Sacramento, police said.

Ellis was pronounced dead at the scene in front of a business in the 1800 block of Del Paso Boulevard. Five others -- men and women in their 20s and 30s -- were shot in their lower extremities but had non-life threatening injuries. They either drove themselves or were transported by ambulance to local area hospitals.

Read more: 1 killed, 6 hurt in Halloween party shooting in North Sacramento

The incident occurred shortly before 1:37 a.m. Sunday. Police said somebody driving by in a sedan shot at partygoers as they exited the front door of the business.

It was not known if Ellis was targeted, police said. Police are investigating the circumstances of the party, which may have been held at the business illegally.

October 28, 2013
Carmichael pizza place suffers fire damage

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters were busy overnight putting out fires at a Carmichael pizza parlor and southern Sacramento County mobile home.

At 12:10 a.m. today firefighters were called to Mark and Monica's Family Pizza Restaurant, 4751 Manzanita Ave., where fire in brush in front of the business had "extended into part of the structure," according to a fire district press release.

Crews limited the growth of the fire by quickly pouring water on the flames. Most of the building was spared from fire damage as 40 firefighters were able to bring the blaze under control within 45 minutes of arrival.

Damage was estimated at $50,000. The cause is under investigation.

Then, just after 2 a.m., Sac Metro fire crews in the south end of the sprawling district were called to a mobile home fire at 6435 Orange Ave., which is near Stockton Boulevard and Florin Road. Arriving crews conducted a search of the blazing mobile home to confirm everyone was out of residence.

Firefighting limited damage to the kitchen. An estimated $20,000 in damage was reported.

October 27, 2013
Motorist shot multiple times in Del Paso Heights

By Hudson Sangree

A man was shot multiple times in his car in Del Paso Heights on Sunday afternoon as his 2-year-old brother sat nearby, Sacramento police reported.

The child, a passenger in the car, was not injured, said police Officer Michele Gigante. The driver's injuries, including a wound to the face, were not believed to be life threatening, she said.

At about 4 p.m. the unidentified victim was sitting in his car at Taylor Street and Ford Road when a white car pulled up beside him and an occupant of the other vehicle opened fire, Gigante said.

Scanner traffic at the time indicated that an ambulance crew was bringing the victim of a drive-by shooting to UC Davis Medical Center with seven gunshot wounds, including to the thigh and elbow.

The shooting occurred the same day that one person was killed and six were injured in a drive-by shooting at a Halloween party about 2 miles away on Del Paso Bouelvard in North Sacramento. Gigante said she could not speculate whether there was any connection between the two incidents.

October 27, 2013
1 killed, 6 injured in drive-by shooting at north Sacramento Halloween party

By Tillie Fong

One person was killed and six injured in a drive-by shooting at a Halloween party in north Sacramento early Sunday, police said.

A man in his late 20s was pronounced dead at the scene.

Five others - a mix of men and women in their 20s and 30s - were shot in their lower extremities but had non-life threatening injuries They either drove themselves or were transported by ambulance to local area hospitals.

October 26, 2013
Roseville police say parolee fired first in shootout


By Darrell Smith, Hector Amezcua and Sam Stanton

Roseville police say the 32-year-old suspect in a nightlong siege in Roseville fired on officers first Friday afternoon, triggering hours of confrontation that left five law enforcement officers injured.

The suspect, a parolee with a criminal record going back 11 years, finally gave himself up early this morning after lengthy negotiations with police.

Sammy Nathan Duran initially was taken to a local hospital for treatment of scrapes to his head and a gunshot wound to his hand, then booked at the Roseville jail and then taken to the Placer County Jail shortly before 9 a.m.

During a press conference this afternoon, police said the incident began on Sixth Street, where the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer was shot when officers spotted Duran and gave chase after they recognized him as being wanted for a parole violation.

October 25, 2013
Roseville standoff ends: Shooting suspect taken into custody

Sammy Duran, suspect in officer shooting .jpgBy Ed Fletcher, Stephen Magagnini and Richard Chang

A parolee wanted in the shooting of an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent and two Roseville police officers was taken into custody after a manhunt and standoff that lasted more than nine hours, Roseville police announced about 12:30 a.m. Saturday.

Sacramento Bee photographer Hector Amezcua was at the scene at the time and reported via Twitter: "Sammy Duran taken into custody."

SWAT sent in a robot to establish communication and ordered the suspect to come out, according to a tweet from the City of Roseville shortly after 1 a.m.: "Suspect came out from house unarmed, taken into custody."

October 25, 2013
Man suspected of Rio Linda residential arson arrested

Sacramento County Sheriff's Department deputies have arrested a suspect in connection with an Oct. 19 residential structure fire in Rio Linda.

Arturo Leal-Avalos, 33, was arrested Oct. 22 on suspicion of arson, according to the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District.

He is accused of starting a fire that engulfed a residential structure in the 7500 block of Second Street.

Leal-Avalos is being held at Sacramento County Main Jail in lieu of $75,000 bail.

October 25, 2013
Suspect in Lodi crash had been drinking, documents indicate

Ryan Christopher Morales.pngA suspect in the Tuesday car crash that killed five people had been drinking apple vodka with his father shortly before the accident, according to search warrant documents filed with the San Joaquin Superior Court.

Ryan Christopher Morales, 28, also was driving without a valid driver's license and had recently been released from San Quentin State Prison after serving time for attempting to evade a police officer while driving recklessly, state records show.

Morales has not been charged, but was named formally as a suspect by Lodi police today and was hospitalized in critical condition after the accident. Police have scheduled a press conference in Lodi Monday to discuss the case.

October 25, 2013
Boy killed in Yolo crash identified

By Tillie Fong and Darrell Smith

Yolo County Coroner's officials identified the teenage boy killed early Thursday near Woodland when the car in which he was traveling crashed after veering off Interstate 5.

Killed was Alejandro Galvan Torres, 13, of Delhi, Merced County, said Mark Persons, a Yolo County Sheriff's spokesman.

Torres and his father, Galvan Audel, 39, of Vancouver, Wash., were passengers in a 2013 Toyota Corolla driven by Torres' cousin, Sergio Gomez-Sandav, 18, California Highway Patrol officials said.

About 4:55 a.m., the car went off I-5 north of County Road 22 and tumbled down an embankment, rolling over several times and partially ejecting Torres before coming to rest near County Road 118.

First responders pronounced Torres dead at the scene. Audel and Gomez-Sandav survived the wreck and were treated at the scene.

Gomez-Sandav told investigators he fell asleep behind the wheel, CHP officials said.

CHP officials said neither alcohol nor drugs appeared to factor in the fatal wreck.

October 25, 2013
Bicyclist killed in collision with SUV in Marysville

By Mark Glover

A 45-year-old male bicyclist was killed in a collision with a sport-utility vehicle late Thursday night in Marysville, according to the Yuba-Sutter office of the California Highway Patrol.

CHP said the bicyclist was traveling south on Simpson Lane, south of 10th Street, at about 10:37 p.m. when his bike was struck in the rear by a 2007 Mitsubishi Outlander traveling in the same direction.

The SUV was being driven by a 25-year-old male.

CHP said the bicyclist was thrown off his bike and sustained fatal injuries. Officials said the bicyclist was not wearing a helmet, and the lighting equipment on his mountain bike was not functioning at the time of the collision.

The incident remains under investigation.

No other details have been released.

October 24, 2013
Bicyclist killed in collision with SUV in Carmichael

A bicyclist was struck and killed by a sport utility vehicle Thursday night in Carmichael, police said.

The incident occurred at 8:05 p.m. on El Camino Avenue, near Laurence Avenue. The cyclist, a male in his 20s, was traveling in the wrong direction on El Camino Avenue when he was hit by an oncoming SUV, said Officer Lizz Dutton, California Highway Patrol spokeswoman.

"The cyclist was on the same road, but he was facing traffic. The rider didn't have a headlight and wasn't wearing a helmet," Dutton said.

The man was pronounced dead on the scene. Authorities are still interviewing the driver of the SUV to see if alcohol or drugs were a factor in the collision, Dutton said.

October 24, 2013
No gun found at Barrett Middle School, lock down lifted

By Kim Minugh

Sacramento County sheriff's deputies investigated a report of a possible gun at John Barrett Middle School in Carmichael on Thursday afternoon, but no weapon was found, according to authorities.

A campus lock down was lifted and students were released at 1:08 p.m. according to the normal Thursday schedule, said Trent Allen, spokesman for San Juan Unified School District.

About 12:30 p.m., a student at Barrett told a staff member he thought he saw another student carrying a gun. School officials contacted the Sheriff's Department and deputies responded to investigate.

The campus initially was placed on lock down, which transitioned into a "shelter in place" order, Allen said. That means instruction is continuing but students and staff members must stay in their classrooms.

When deputies found nothing to confirm the report, students were released from the school day as normal, Allen said.

A message was sent home to parents notifying them of the incident.

October 24, 2013
Girl, 14, helps capture burglar at her Granite Bay home

A 14-year-old girl's quick thinking led to the capture of an El Dorado Hills man who allegedly attempted to break into her Granite Bay home Wednesday, according to the Placer County Sheriff's Office.

Mitchell Paul Leahy, 34, (pictured) was being held on $175,000 bond at the Placer County jail in Auburn Thursday. He is facing charges of burglary, receiving stolen property, identity theft, committing a crime while on bail, possessing a firearm in the commission of a felony and giving a false identity.


The sheriff's office said shortly before 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, a 14-year-old girl was alone at her Barton Road home when she heard a knock at the front door. She did not answer but called her mother, who was away from the home, to tell her about the incident.

October 24, 2013
13-year-old boy dies in car crash near Woodland

A teenage boy was killed, and his father and a male cousin were injured when a car apparently veered off Interstate 5 in Woodland early Thursday morning, the California Highway Patrol said.

The 13-year-old boy, whose identity has not been released by the Yolo County Coroner's Office, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver, Sergio Gomez-Sandav, 18, of Turlock, and a male passenger, Galvan Audel, 39, of Vancouver, Wash. suffered abrasions and were treated at the scene.

October 24, 2013
Update: Idaho man arrested for taking photo of girl at South Sacramento Halloween store

A 67-year-old Idaho man was arrested Wednesday night after authorities received a complaint that he was taking photos of a girl's "private area" with his cell phone at a South Sacramento Halloween store Monday, police said.

Garth Mendenhall Clark (pictured), who may be from Idaho Falls, ID, was being held at the Sacramento County jail on a misdemeanor child annoyance charge. His bond was set at $25,000.

Sacramento County Sheriff investigators were alerted to Clark on Monday after receiving a report from an employee at Halloween City store, 6071 Florin Road, that he was following a girl under the age of 10 in the store.

October 23, 2013
Woman lying on track struck and killed by RT train

A woman was struck and killed by a Regional Transit train Wednesday evening, authorities said.

The incident occurred about 7:45 p.m. between the Alkali Flat/La Valentina and Globe stations. An RT train heading from downtown toward Watt/I-80 struck a woman lying on the track, said Alane Masui, RT spokeswoman.

"Because the woman was wearing dark clothing and laying across the dark asphalt, the operator was unable to avoid striking the woman," Masui said, noting that the individual was not in a "pedestrian walkway."

Authorities have not released the identity of the woman.

October 23, 2013
Sacramento sheriff's detectives seek more possible victims of abusive masseur

Detectives are trying to identify any further victims of a Sacramento-area masseur who is alleged to have inappropriately touched female clients during massages.

ACEVEDO.jpgSacramento County sheriff's detectives arrested Jeremy Acevedo, who also goes by the name Jeremiah, in August after an investigation into the allegations, said Sgt. Lisa Bowman.

At least two victims have been identified by investigators, Bowman said, but detectives suspect there are more. They are asking those women to come forward.

Acevedo began working in the Sacramento area at the start of the year, Bowman said. He primarily worked in the north area.

In August, prosecutors charged Acevedo with four felony counts of penetration by a foreign object and six misdemeanor counts of sexual battery. He is no longer in custody.

Anyone with information is asked to call sexual assaults Detective Brendan McAtee at (916) 874-5070.

October 23, 2013
Employee at Starr King K-8 after-school program accused of sex acts with two minor students

By Kim Minugh

A "team leader" in an after-school program at Starr King K-8 School has been arrested after being accused of committing sex acts with two students off campus, according to authorities.

LAGOSx3062128.jpgOn Tuesday, Sacramento County sheriff's deputies arrested Julia Nicole Lagos, 19, on suspicion of lewd acts with a child under the age of 14, said Sgt. Lisa Bowman. Lagos was released from jail the same day after posting $50,000 bond, Bowman said.

She is scheduled to be arraigned on three felony counts Tuesday, according to Superior Court records available online.

Lagos is employed by the Mission Oaks Parks and Recreation District, which contracts with the San Juan Unified School District to run the Bridges after-school program at Starr King, Bowman said.

Lagos is no longer employed by Mission Oaks Parks and Rec, according to a district official.

At the time of the alleged assaults, worked as a "team leader," or classroom monitor, for a group of third and fourth graders, Bowman said.

Although the two victims are students who attend the Bridges after-school program, the two boys were not under Lagos' supervision, the sergeant said. At the request of detectives, she did not release the ages of the two victims.

The sex acts are alleged to have occurred at a local park after the Bridges program had concluded on those days, Bowman said. Detectives believe Lagos had inappropriate conduct on multiple occasions with one victim and once with the other.

Trent Allen, spokesman for San Juan Unified, said the allegations were brought earlier this month to Starr King's principal, who notified the Sheriff's Department. Lagos was "removed from the school environment" and has not been back.

Bowman said detectives do not believe there were any other victims.

Barry Ross, director of recreation and marketing for Mission Oaks Parks and Rec, said Lagos was hired in August. She recently was "released of her duties," he said, though he declined to say when.

"We are in cooperation with law enforcement and the San Juan Unified School District," Ross said. "Of course we want this resolved."

Lagos had no previous criminal record in Sacramento County, according to Superior Court records. Efforts to reach her have been unsuccessful.

Call The Bee's Kim Minugh, (916) 321-1038. Follow her on Twitter @Kim_Minugh.

October 23, 2013
Mistrial declared in Sacramento murder case for one defendant

By Ed Fletcher

The trial for one defendant in a Sacramento murder case will have to start over after Superior Court Judge Russell L. Hom found the prosecutor violated evidence rules by withholding information from a jailhouse informant.

Hom declared a mistrial in the state's case against Bryan David Denton, 51, after the defendant's attorney argued that the information might have altered the defense's courtroom strategy.

But the judge rejected a similar request by co-defendant Stacey Ann Perryman, 45, and her case will proceed.

Denton and Perryman are accused of the May 19, 2012 stabbing death of Stephen Sieck, 60, at his Selby Ranch apartment. Deputy District Attorney Eric Kindall told the court he withheld the statement because it would place an informant in danger.

October 23, 2013
Midtown Sacramento cyclist seriously injured in collision with city garbage truck

A cyclist riding in midtown Sacramento this morning was seriously injured after colliding with a city garbage truck, according to police.

The cyclist, an adult man, was transported to the hospital but is expected to survive, said police Officer Doug Morse.

No crime is suspected in the collision, which Morse described as a "tragic accident."

The collision occurred before 9 a.m. at the intersection of 21st Street and Capitol Avenue, Morse said. The cyclist and the garbage truck were both travelling northbound on 21st Street when the driver attempted to make a left turn onto Capitol Boulevard. The truck and the cyclist then collided.

The cause of the investigation is still under investigation, Morse said.

October 23, 2013
Man killed in auto-pedestrian accident in north Sacramento identified

A man who was killed in an auto-pedestrian accident in north Sacramento early Tuesday has been identified.

The Sacramento County Coroner's Office identified him Wednesday as Jeffery Allen Ritz, 33. No city was given as his residence.

At 6 a.m. Tuesday, Ritz was apparently walking north across Arden Way, near Empress Street, when an eastbound vehicle on Arden Way struck him.

Ritz was pronounced dead at the scene, which the coroner's office had indicated was in front of a Shell gas station, 860 Arden Way.

The motorist, who was not identified, had remained on the scene. Alcohol was not a factor in the accident, which occurred near an uncontrolled intersection.

October 23, 2013
Woman killed in Elk Grove hit and run accident identified

The woman who was killed in a hit and run accident in Elk Grove early Tuesday morning has been identified.

The Sacramento Coroner's Office identified her as Ann Babetta Vavrick, 62, of Elk Grove.

At 2:09 a.m. Tuesday, Elk Grove police had received a call of a woman sitting on different sides of the road of Stockton Boulevard, north of Sheldon Road.

When officers arrived, they found Vavrick lying on the ground in the middle of a northbound lane of Stockton Boulevard. She had apparently been hit by a vehicle which had left the scene. She was pronounced dead onsite.

Elk Grove police are still searching for the hit and run vehicle and are asking for the public's help in locating it. It was not known what type of vehicle it was, but it would have damage to the undercarriage.

Anyone with information on the accident should call Elk Grove police's traffic division at (916) 478-8148.

October 22, 2013
Update: Five dead, others critical in Lodi crash


By Sam Stanton, Tillie Fong and Richard Chang

Police say the death toll from a multiple vehicle crash Tuesday afternoon in Lodi is at five, with two other victims in critical condition.

Authorities have not officially released the names of the dead, but they appear to be from one family that was in a Ford pickup truck involved in the crash before 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

The dead include a man in his 30s who was driving the truck, a woman seven months pregnant, a 12-year-old boy, 7-year-old boy and 5-year-old girl. A 9-year-old boy who is a sibling of the dead children is in critical condition.

October 22, 2013
Fairfield man arrested in connection with Vacaville fire

A Fairfield man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of arson in the Oct. 9 fire at the Mariani Fruit Packing Co. in Vacaville.

Vacaville police arrested Edward Burke IV, 20, following an investigation into the fire at the fruit packing plant. About 300 employees were evacuated from the plant as a safety precaution during the incident. Authorities later determined that the flames were sparked by three separate fires.

Burke, a temporary employee, had been working at Mariani for the last three months, according to Vacaville police.

Anyone who may have information related to this case is asked to contact
Detective Mark Ferreira of the Vacaville Police Department at (707) 449-5258.

October 22, 2013
Student arrested after guns found at North Highlands school

Twin Rivers police arrested an 18-year-old student Tuesday afternoon for bringing two guns - one loaded - onto the campus of the Pacific Career &Technology High School in North Highlands, according to school district officials.

The man, identified by Sacramento County Sheriff's Department officials as Jaison Andrade, was arrested on suspicion of possessing concealed firearms on a school campus after police officers and a canine unit from the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department searched the campus at 6560 Melrose Drive and found two 22-caliber handguns in a backpack, said Zenobia Gerald, Twin Rivers district spokeswoman.

School officials were alerted to the presence of the weapons at 10:35 a.m. by the mother of a student who had heard that someone had brought weapons on campus. The school was locked down and searched, Gerald said. A Sheriff's Department canine named Rocky found the guns.

October 22, 2013
Cyclist killed in Monday accident in south Sacramento identified

The cyclist who was killed early Monday during a traffic accident in south Sacramento has been identified.

The Sacramento County Coroner's Office identified the victim as James Combis, 59, of Sacramento.

Combis was struck by a sport utility vehicle after he apparently swerved in front of the vehicle at 6:25 a.m. on Stockton Boulevard, according to the California Highway Patrol. He was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.

For more information, read the original post here.

October 22, 2013
Cal Fire battalion chief arrested on drug charge in Roseville

A battalion chief for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection was arrested on suspicion of transporting methamphetamine Sept. 30 in Roseville, authorities said.

The suspect, identified as Ronald Raymond Wright, 48, was arrested by police during an early morning undercover drug sweep in the 200 block of Harding Boulevard, according to Dee Dee Gunther, Roseville police spokeswoman.

"It was part of a routine undercover operation we do in the area to address drug issues," Gunther said. "He was found in possession."

Wright was booked into jail. He posted $20,000 bail and is now free, pending his first court appearance Nov. 18, Gunther said.

October 22, 2013
California prison officials defend treatment of mentally ill inmates

By Denny Walsh and Sam Stanton

The state began its defense Tuesday of how it treats mentally ill inmates, with a psychiatrist from the California State Prison at Corcoran testifying that the use of pepper spray and strong restraints against prisoners in their cells sometimes is necessary to save an inmate's life.

Testifying in U.S. District Court in Sacramento, Dr. Ernest Wagner described his treatment of a prisoner known in court only as "Inmate A," a suicidal inmate who was sprayed repeatedly with pepper spray and pulled forcibly from his cell because he was refusing his medication. Wagner said he was present at the cell extraction.

Lawyers for the inmates, who are seeking court orders for sweeping changes in state prison policy on the handling of the mentally ill, played a graphic video of the cell extraction in court earlier this month to bolster their case for change.

In it, the naked prisoner is doused with pepper spray, forcibly removed from his cell in a mental health crisis unit at Corcoran, then strapped to a gurney and injected with anti-psychotic medication.

The inmates' attorneys are hoping the video of the cell extraction - as well as five others that have been played in court - will convince U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton to order limits on the use of force and pepper spray against the prisoners.

But the state contends the scenes shown in court this month are not representative of the efforts made by medical and custody staff to ensure patients are not injured.

October 22, 2013
Police decline to release name of 12-year-old Sparks school shooter

Landsberry Michael Master Sgt.jpg2013102_ha_SPARKS_SHOOTING0053.JPGBy Kim Minguh

SPARKS, Nev. -- Sparks police said today they have no plans to release the name of the 12-year-old boy who opened fire at a middle school Monday "out of respect for his grieving parents."

"They are grieving parents and are going through a very challenging, difficult time," said Deputy Chief Tom Miller.

Monday's shooting at Sparks Middle School left a popular math teacher, Michael Landsberry, dead and two 12-year-old students wounded. They are in stable condition and expected to survive.

October 22, 2013
Girl struck by car while walking to school in south Sacramento

A 14-year-old girl was hurt when she was hit by a vehicle as she was walking to school Tuesday morning.

The girl sustained non-life threatening injuries, and was taken to a nearby hospital.

The accident occurred at 7:35 a.m. in the 5200 block of Valley Hi Drive.

October 22, 2013
Man killed in auto-pedestrian accident in north Sacramento

A man was killed Tuesday morning when he was walking across Arden Way and was struck by a vehicle.

The man, described as being in his 30s, was pronounced dead at the scene. He has yet to be identified.

The accident happened around 6 a.m. when the man was walking north across Arden Way, near Empress Street.

A vehicle traveling east on Arden Way struck the pedestrian as he was crossing the road.

"The motorist remained at the scene," said Michele Gigante, spokeswoman for Sacramento Police. "There was no sign of any alcohol involvement."

It was not known what type of vehicle was involved or what speed it was traveling at the time of the accident. The identity of the motorist was not given.

According to Gigante, the collision happened near an uncontrolled intersection and there were no crosswalks in the area.

The roads were closed for two and half hours for the accident investigation.

October 22, 2013
Elderly Sacramento woman killed in auto-pedestrian accident

An elderly Sacramento woman was killed Monday night when she was hit by a car as she was walking on a dark street in the Arden Arcade area.

The Sacramento Coroner's Office identified the woman as Rosemarie Jitner, 75.

At 7 p.m., Monday, a Toyota Camry was traveling north on the far right lane of Eastern Avenue, just south of Fitch Way, when it hit an elderly woman walking on the right side of the road. The vehicle was going 40 mph at the time.

October 22, 2013
Woman killed in hit and run accident in Elk Grove

Elk Grove police are asking for the public's help in locating the driver involved in a fatal hit and run accident on Stockton Boulevard near Sheldon Road early Tuesday.

A 62-year-old woman, who has not been identified, was pronounced dead at the scene.

"At this point, we do not have any idea of what type of vehicle struck her, and we don't have any eye witnesses to the actual collision," said Officer Chris Trim, spokesman for Elk Grove police.

October 21, 2013
Woodland men arrested after allegedly burglarizing home

By Ed Fletcher

Two Woodland men were taken into custody Monday for allegedly attempting to burglarize a rural Yolo County home after farm workers helped initiate the search and identify the suspects.

The incident began at 7:40 a.m. when farm workers saw two men running from a residence on County Road 20 near County Road 92C and called the Yolo County Sheriff's Office, authorities said.

The farm workers gave the deputies a description of the suspects and later identified them. By 10 a.m., deputies had both suspects in custody after they were allegedly interrupted while attempting to burglarize the home.

They were identified as Mathewv Craig Means, 22, and Timothy Daniel Coutee, 29, both of Woodland. Before Coutee was taken into custody, witnesses said they saw him riding a quad ATV, which was later determined to be stolen. Coutee is likely to face additional charges.

October 21, 2013
Judges extend deadline for California to cut inmate population

By Sam Stanton

Federal judges today granted a one-month extension of their order for the state to cut its inmate population by roughly 8,000 prisoners, giving California until Feb. 24 to achieve the reductions.

The move extends the Jan. 27 deadline and gives the state and attorneys for the inmates more time to negotiate in a "meet and confer" process the three-judge panel ordered earlier.

The two sides had been ordered in September to meet, and today was the deadline for a judge overseeing the process to report back to the federal panel.

October 21, 2013
Update: Witnesses recount fatal shooting at Sparks middle school

Middle School Shooting.jpg

By Sam Stanton and Kim Minugh

SPARKS, Nev. - Students and parents described a terrifying scene this morning near Reno, where a young man showed up on campus at the Sparks Middle School and wounded two students, killed a teacher and then apparently shot himself.

The alleged shooter was described by police as a "student/suspect" who came to the school before classes began today.

"He shot a student and then a teacher tried to stop him and he shot the teacher," Abner Lopez, father of a 13-year-old eighth-grader, told The Bee this morning. "The kids kind of scattered.

"School was not open yet, so they ran off into the field. It's a pretty tragic scene."

October 21, 2013
Update: Downed power line caused Foresthill fire

A downed transmission line apparently caused a wildland fire in Foresthill and forced 2,600 residents and businesses in Placer County to go without power for several hours.

"We are working with CalFire on the investigation," said Paul Moreno, spokesman for PG&E

"It's looking like a downed power line caused that fire that also burned our utility pole. We're trying to determine what cause the power line to come down."

CalFire received a call at 3:46 a.m. of a vegetation fire burning near Spring Garden and Pine Mountain roads in Foresthill.

October 21, 2013
Sacramento cyclist killed after swerving in front of SUV

A Sacramento cyclist was killed early Monday morning after he apparently swerved in front of a SUV in South Sacramento.

The 59-year-old man was pronounced dead at a local hospital. His identity is being withheld until next of kin has been notified.

The driver of the SUV, Ma Lendy Ortiguesa, 39, of Elk Grove, will not be facing any charges.

October 21, 2013
Two Roseville teens arrested for pointing laser at CHP aircraft

Two Roseville teenagers were arrested Saturday night for allegedly pointing a laser at a CHP aircraft.

"We're having the DA evaluate the case," said Dee Dee Gunther, spokeswoman for Roseville police. "They could be charged with pointing a laser at an aircraft, which can be a felony."

Brian Levenstein, 18 (pictured) was arrested for contributing to the delinquency of a minor. He was released from Placer County Jail Sunday on $2,500 bond.

October 19, 2013
Man who led police on high speed chase identified

The man who allegedly led police on a high speed chase from Rancho Cordova to Elk Grove Friday night has been identified as Kevin Allen Metcalf, 26, authorities said.

The episode started in Rancho Cordova when Allen, driving a blue Prius, pointed a handgun at motorists he had engaged in a verbal argument, said Sgt. Lisa Bowman, of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

Allen is being charged multiple felony and misdemeanor counts that include reckless driving and evading police.

October 18, 2013
Sacramento couple going to prison after attempt to force minor into prostitution

By Ed Fletcher

A Sacramento couple are facing prison time in the kidnapping, assault and attempted pimping of a 14-year-old girl.

David Mosqueda Savala, 25, was sentenced to 23 years to life and Pebbles Laura Savala, 23, was sentenced to 11 years to life for a June 4, 2012, aggravated kidnapping for the purpose of financial gain and felony assault. A jury has also convicted Omar Mosqueda, 19, of kidnapping and felony assault, according to a Sacramento County District Attorney's Office news release.

According to authorities, the three lured the girl to their home for a party. The trio and other beat the girl and left her to walk home. They later forced her into David Savala's van, drove her to south Sacramento and threatened to make her work as a prostitute. She was released after 26 hours at the house.

October 18, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 Crime Q&A: What happened to suspects in January shooting death in Rosemont?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: In January, there was a shooting on Westporter Drive in Rosemont. One man was killed in his car. Two were arrested. What was the outcome?.
Submitted by: Santana, Sacramento

ANSWER: Michael Almeda, 20, and Rodolfo Villa, 23, are being held in Sacramento County Jail without bail in connection with the shooting death of 21-year-old Alexander Brian Chavez.

October 18, 2013
Judge orders trial in killing of 3-year-old boy

By Andy Furillo

A judge ordered a trial for three defendants accused of murder in last year's July 4 shooting death of 3-year-old Jorge Azios IIIv on Loucreta Drive, but he didn't exactly send the case out Friday with a ringing endorsement.

Instead, Sacramento Superior Court Judge Jack Sapunor said it was pretty clear to him that questions remain "not resolved" about the credibility of the key witness against defendants Gabriel Quintero, now 21, Eric Minjares, 19, and Marcus Weber, 18.

At the conclusion of the preliminary hearing, the defense lawyers for the three suggested they will launch an all-out attack on the truthfulness of the witness, identified in court as another young man from unincorporated southeast Sacramento, Anthony Canales, whom they think would make a better suspect than any of their clients.

October 18, 2013
Man sentenced to prison term for murder

By Ed Fletcher

The Sacramento County District Attorney's office announced that Winzer Deandre Hayden, 28, has been sentenced to 50 years to life in prison for the July 10, 2012, shooting death of Westley Wheeler, 18.

On Sept. 20, a jury convicted Hayden of first-degree murder and also found true that he personally used a firearm causing death, according to the DA's office.

Hayden, who is also known as "Dboy," has a lengthy court history, online courts records show. Hayden shot Wheeler in the back following an argument between Wheeler and Hayden's cousin.

Wheeler had initially escaped capture after a police SWAT team surrounded an Del Paso Heights-area address July 10 based on a tip. He was picked up two days later on unrelated charges.

October 18, 2013
High-speed chase ends with suspect in custody in Elk Grove

By Ed Fletcher

A high-speed chase Friday night that stretched from Rancho Cordova to Elk Grove ended with the suspect in custody, authorities said.

The chase reached speeds of 100 mph, according to scanner traffic reported on Twitter. The episode started in Rancho Cordova with a man in a blue Prius pointing a handgun at motorists the male suspect had engaged in a verbal argument, said Sgt. Lisa Bowman, of the Sacramento Sheriff's Department.

Scanner traffic and Twitter posts put the start of the incident at 7 p.m. When deputies arrived, the man fled. The pursuit involved several jurisdictions before coming to an end in Elk Grove about 8 p.m., when officers used spike strips to disable the Prius. The driver showed signs of being under the influence of some substance, Bowman said.

No one was injured in the incident, she said.

October 18, 2013
Roseville man convicted of Davis home burglary

By Ed Fletcher

A Roseville man was convicted Thursday for the June burglary of a Davis home, the Yolo County District Attorney's office announced Friday.

Law enforcement were able to use fingerprints from sunglasses left at the scene and surveillance video of the June 20 crime to link the crime to Ronald McNair, 32, of Roseville.

McNair eventually admitted to the crime, District Attorney Jeff Reisig said. McNair is facing 19 years in state prison. He has a previous "strike" and has served three prior prison terms. McNair is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 21.

October 18, 2013
Two men sentenced in stabbing death near homeless camp

Two men who pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the stabbing death of a Gold River man two years ago near an American River homeless camp were sentenced today to state prison.

Dawayne Jerrold Lawrence, 37, received a 69-year, eight-month term for the May 31, 2011, killing of Adam Michael Steinbach, 27. Co-defendant Frank Paul Haney, 54, who lived in the homeless camp with Lawrence, was sentenced to 12 years by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Michael P. Kenny.

Authorities said the killing resulted from an unpaid drug debt by Steinbach and a robbery of the victim near Del Paso and Northgate boulevards.

October 18, 2013
Man suspected of shooting police dog taken to hospital with self-inflicted wound

photo.PNGA Sacramento County Sheriff's Department police dog, shot by a fleeing suspect who fired at officers, is doing well after being treated at a veterinary hospital.

Meanwhile, the man who shot the dog, was found hours later with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his head and has been taken to a hospital, according to Sheriff's department spokeswoman Sgt. Lisa Bowman.

The incident began around 5:30 a.m. when Sacramento police began the pursuit of a driver in a stolen vehicle. Police were assisted in the chase by the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

October 18, 2013
Downtown Sacramento shooter was Mendocino deputy DA, his boss says

Authorities say that it was a Mendocino County Deputy District Attorney who shot and wounded another man on a downtown Sacramento street early Thursday morning.

Mendocino County District Attorney David Eyster confirmed in a press release that one of his deputy district attorneys, Damon Gardner, shot and wounded another man during a "physical confrontation" outside a hotel near the Capitol.

Sacramento police said that officers were initially summoned at about 12:30 a.m. Thursday to a report of a knifing near 15th and L streets. When officers arrived, they learned that a man had actually been shot in his upper body.

October 17, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: Were charges filed against wrong-way driver in fatal I-5 crash?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What was the name of the wrong-way driver in the fatal collision June 20 on Interstate 5, and have charges been filed?
Submitted by: L. Gibson, Sacramento

ANSWER: Jefferson Cortez was identified as the driver of a vehicle that was traveling southbound in the northbound lanes of Interstate 5 near Del Paso Boulevard about 1:30 a.m. when his car struck two other vehicles, according to California Highway Patrol spokeswoman Officer Lizz Dutton.

October 17, 2013
Children's Receiving Home counselor admits to sex with girl

mug.jpgA former counselor at the Children's Receiving Home of Sacramento has pleaded no contest to having sexual contact with a client.

Theresa Caroline Gooch, who turned 25 this week, agreed to a one-year county jail term and five years probation when she entered her plea Oct. 8 in Sacramento Superior Court.

Gooch could have been sentenced to multiple years in state prison if she was convicted at trial. She also will be required to register as a sex offender until the end of her probation.

October 17, 2013
Ex-motorcycle gang member convicted of gun possession

A former outlaw motorcycle gang member from Philadelphia has been convicted in Sacramento of being an ex-felon in possession of a .22 pistol.

A Superior Court jury returned the verdict Tuesday against Sherone Bradley, who used to ride with an outfit called "Wheels of Soul."

Bradley, 32, flashed the gun July 22, 2011, at a barbecue in the Sacramento area to an undercover agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms ad Explosives. He had the gun with him again when he was stopped by Walnut Creek police on Oct. 18, 2011.

Bradley claimed he needed the gun for protection because he was subjected to death threats after he dropped out of the gang.

Judge Peter Mering scheduled Bradley's sentencing for Nov. 15.

October 17, 2013
Fire sweeps through Rancho Cordova home but adjacent homes spared

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews had to move fast to prevent fire spreading to adjacent residences when fire swept through a Rancho Cordova home today filled with debris and personal items.

When firefighters arrived at the blaze in the two-story home in the 2800 block of Hyannis Way at about 9:30 a.m., the residence was fully involved in fire.

Upon arrival, crews sprayed water on fire inside the home and began a search for possible residents. Nobody was found in the house, which had boarded up windows.

Neighboring homes were just a few feet from the structure. Firefighters worked quickly to extinguish the blaze.

While the interior of the home and contents were destroyed by fire, the house still stands and neighboring homes were spared. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

October 17, 2013
CHP: 100 pounds of marijuana discovered during traffic stop

pot 1.jpgA 23-year-old Illinois man is in custody in Placer County after 100 pounds of marijuana allegedly were discovered in his Jeep Cherokee during a traffic stop in Auburn, according to authorities.

Eduardo Angeles Jr. was arrested on suspicion of multiple charges, including possession of marijuana for sale and transportation of marijuana for sale, according to California Highway Patrol Officer Dave Martinez.

A CHP officer doing speed enforcement on Interstate 80 near Dry Creek Road stopped Angeles after the officer observed his Jeep Cherokee travelling about 90 miles per hour, Martinez said.

pot 2.jpgUpon contacting Angeles, who was the only person in the car, the officer "could smell the strong odor of marijuana from within the vehicle," Martinez wrote in a news release. Further investigation with the help of the Placer County Sheriff's Department's Special Investigation Unit revealed the marijuana.

Martinez said Angeles was headed back to Illinois when he was stopped.

Angeles was booked into the Placer County Jail.

October 17, 2013
Rocklin police search turns up attempt burglary suspect

imageContent.html.jpegRocklin police arrested a Sacramento man who they said fled from them when they tried to question him early this morning.

Donald Lee McGuckin, 46, (pictured) was eventually arrested on suspicion of attempted commercial burglary, possession of burglary tools and possession of narcotics paraphernalia.

A police press release said officers saw a vehicle being driven in an alley behind a closed business in the 4000 block of Granite Drive about 2:33 a.m. Thursday. Officers tried to speak with the driver, but he fled on foot.

More officers responded and the area was surrounded. McGuckin was taken into custody in a nearby business complex.

Where the officers first tried to speak with McGuckin, police found a broken front window on a business. It did not appear that anyone got inside.

October 17, 2013
Downtown Sacramento shooting leaves one man injured

A fight turned into a shooting early this morning at 15th and L streets in Sacramento.

Police were initially summoned at about 12:30 a.m. to a report of a knifing at the corner near the Capitol and late night-operating bars and restaurants. When officers arrived, they learned that a man had actually been shot in his upper body.

A Sacramento police activity report said that two people passed two others when an argument began between the two groups. Words escalated into a fight -- and the fight into a shot being fired.

All parties to the incident were contacted by officers and an investigation is ongoing police said today. No arrests have been made.

The wounded man was transported to the hospital. Information on the severity of his injury was not available.

October 17, 2013
Rocklin police and Sierra College team up to stop catalytic converter theft

catalytic converter.JPGTo stem the theft of catalytic converters, a crime that occurred 73 times last year in Rocklin, police and Sierra College are partnering to etch the expensive smog control devices with license plate numbers.

Rocklin Police and the Sierra College Auto Club are holding a free catalytic converter etching event from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oct. 26 at the Sierra College campus auto shop, 5000 Rocklin Road.

At the event, which is not limited to Rocklin residents, the plate number will be etched into the converter, the area around the etching will be painted to allow for easy recognition and each vehicle will get a small window decal noting that Rocklin PD has etched the device.

October 17, 2013
Second man booked in Auburn stolen meat caper

8637519B-1CF0-4A07-8E16-89FFFB12D75E.jpgAuburn police have arrested a second man in connection with the theft of packaged meat from the Salvation Army.

Following up on leads obtained after the theft of meat from the Salvation Army last week, detectives arrested Richard Earl Means, 49, (pictured) of Penryn on Wednesday on suspicion of grand theft and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Last week, police booked an alleged accomplice, Jeff Holzman, into Placer County Jail on suspicion of burglary, being a felon in possession of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle, and violation of his post release community supervision conditions, according to a Police Department news release.

Officers went to the Salvation Army quarters at 286 Sutter St. Oct. 9 regarding a theft report. They were told that, two people had gained access to the freezer and taken more than 300 pounds of packaged meat. The food is provided through charitable donations to help feed the homeless and needy families in the Auburn area.

Detectives followed up on leads and located most of the stolen meat at a business in Penryn. They took custody of the packaged meat, photographed it and returned it to the Salvation Army.

October 16, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to 1980s TV weatherman accused of lewd acts?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: Back in the late 1980s there was a weather man dubbed Stormin' Norman. He was accused of lewd sexual acts in a bathroom in Sunrise Mall. Was he found guilty?
Submitted by: Tony, Sacramento

ANSWER: Norman Francis Jacobs, also known as Stormin' Norman, a television weatherman for KTXL Channel 40, was one of six men arrested in 1987 on charges of soliciting and engaging in lewd acts in a Macy's department store restroom in Sunrise Mall.

October 16, 2013
Inmate from Sacramento accused of attacking sergeant at Susanville prison

A man who pleaded guilty in the 1992 slaying of a teenager in south Sacramento is accused of assaulting a sergeant Monday night at High Desert State Prison in Susanville.

The assault occurred at 6 p.m. after staff members had completed a clothed body search of inmate Bernard L. Wildee, according to a state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation news release. Staff members reported finding contraband and Wildee was ordered to allow himself to be handcuffed, but he instead repeatedly struck a correctional sergeant in the face and head, officials said.

Two other staff members also were taken to a local hospital for treatment.

October 16, 2013
Thieves target walnuts in Sutter County

The Sutter County Sheriff's Office is advising residents to be on the lookout for people stealing nuts.

Officials report an increase in agricultural thefts in the county, primarily involving walnuts. More than 10,000 pounds of Chandler walnuts were taken Tuesday night from an area south of Messick Road, according to a Sheriff's Office news release.

Residents are urged to report any suspicious activity to the Sutter County Sheriff's Office at (530) 822-7307. Tip information also may be left anonymously on the sheriff's website at

October 16, 2013
CSUS employees warned of potential identity theft after computer system hacked

Approximately 1,800 employees of California State University, Sacramento received letters this week informing them that their Social Security and driver's license information had been compromised due to a security breach of the campus' computer system.

Kim Nava, a campus spokeswoman, said the university's IT staff discovered a problem with a server for the risk management office in August and immediately shut down the server as they sought the cause of the problem. On Sept. 23, she said, they determined that an external entity had gained access to the system and data had been compromised.

After IT staff found the breach, they had to further investigate whether other servers were impacted, determine exactly which employees were affected and have the university send letters to individuals, Nava said.

October 16, 2013
Update: Missing Rancho Cordova man returns home safely

The Rancho Cordova man who was missing after he failed to return home from a camping trip has been found safe.

Douglas Reeves told his wife he was going to the Plumas National Forest or the Lake Tahoe National Forest to camp and hike, according to the Police Department. He was expected home Oct. 10, but had not been seen or heard from since he left his home.

However, he returned home Wednesday night, according to Rancho cordova police.

October 16, 2013
Rio Linda building heavily damaged by fire

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were able to save half of a building in Rio Linda hit hard by fire last night.

The fire was reported about 10:15 p.m. Tuesday at a construction company building in the 2400 block of Elkhorn Boulevard. First-arriving crews found flames at the front of the structure.

Crews immediately worked to extinguish the fire at the single-story building, limiting damage to half of the structure, according to a fire district press release. About 40 firefighters were able to bring the fire under control about 35 minutes after arrival.

A portion of the roof collapsed. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

October 16, 2013
Man killed when trying to retrieve belongings on freeway is identified

A man who was killed when struck by a car while he was trying to retrieve his dropped belongings on Highway 99 has been identified by the coroner's office.

The Sacramento County Coroner's Office website listed the motorist as Hien Van Tran, 45, of Elk Grove.

Tran's death occurred at 9:55 a.m. Tuesday, according to the website.

October 16, 2013
Update: Coroner identifies Orangevale shooting victim

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of the man killed Tuesday morning in Orangevale.

He was identified as Steven Lester Fish, 32, of Orangevale.

Sacramento County sheriff's authorities say Fish, who was fatally shot while reportedly walking his dog in Orangevale about 4 a.m. Tuesday, likely knew his assailant and that the shooting does not appear to be a random act of violence -- nor does it appear, they said, that he was actually walking a dog.

October 15, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to suspects in 1997 slaying of teen in Rosemont?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What was the outcome of a killing in the Rosemont area? The year was '97, at a dead end. The victim's name was Oscar.
Submitted by: Michael, Sacramento

ANSWER: Oscar De Herrera, 16, was killed and his older brother was critically injured in December 1997 when they were shot at Huntsman and Parfait drives, near the playing fields of Albert Einstein Middle School.

October 15, 2013
UPDATE: Sacramento police arrest suspect in stabbing of midtown Safeway security officer

Sacramento police have arrested a suspect in the stabbing of a loss prevention officer at the midtown Safeway.

The stabbing occurred shortly before 6 p.m. The suspect, who fled and was the subject of a police search, was taken into custody this evening by a police K 9 unit. No other details about the arrest were released Tuesday night.

The loss prevention officer was transported to the UC Davis Medical Center with injuries that are not life-threatening, according to police spokeswoman Officer Michele Gigante.

Police responded to the area of the store, at 19th and S streets, after reports of a stabbing. The loss prevention officer had attempted to stop a man who the officer suspected of shoplifting, Gigante said.

The suspect then ran from the scene.

October 15, 2013
Man pleads no contest to burglary, sexual battery

A man accused of sexually assaulting one woman and attempting to assault another after forcing his way into their apartments has pleaded no contest to charges.

William Russell, 22, today entered the no contest plea to two counts of first-degree burglary, one count of sexual battery and one count of attempted sexual battery, according to a Sacramento County District Attorney's Office news release. The burglary offenses are strikes under California law, officials said.

Russell, who did not know the victims, complimented both on their toes and feet and asked if he could touch them. Both women declined and tried to ignore him. Russell, however, followed them to their apartments and forced his way inside. He sexually assaulted one of the women and tried to sexually assault the other, but she was able to push him out of her apartment, officials said.

Under the plea agreement, Russell will be sentenced to a stipulated six years and 10 months in prison, according to the District Attorney's Office. Once he is released on parole, he will be required to register as a convicted sex offender. His sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 12. in Sacramento Superior Court.

October 15, 2013
Update: Sheriff's officials say Orangevale victim was not randomly attacked; was not walking dog

Sacramento County sheriff's authorities say the man fatally shot while reportedly walking his dog in Orangevale early this morning likely knew his assailant and that the shooting does not appear to be a random act of violence - nor does it appear, they said, that he was actually walking a dog.

Detectives also have determined that the story the surviving victim told investigators - that he and his friend were walking a dog when they were assaulted about 4 a.m. on Central Avenue - was a lie, said sheriff's Sgt. Lisa Bowman.

The victim, in his 30s, has not yet been identified by the Sacramento County Coroner's Office.

Deputies responded to the 9000 block of Central Avenue after callers reported being awakened by gunshots. They found the two victims, one of whom had been fatally shot. The other suffered a graze wound to his ear, Bowman said.

Detectives interviewed the surviving victim as well the other residents of the Central Avenue home where the deceased victim lived. Bowman said this afternoon that it appears the deceased victim likely knew his assailant or at least had some previous association with the suspect.

No suspect description has been released.

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call the Sheriff's Department at (916) 874-5115 or leave a tip at

This post was updated by Bee staff writer Kim Minugh.

October 15, 2013
Man reportedly attacked, tied up at Olivehurst home

The Yuba County Sheriff's Department is investigating an attack on a man who reported he was assaulted by three men as he entered his Olivehurst home Sunday night.

Deputies responded at 8:30 p.m. Sunday to a report of an apparent robbery on Western Avenue. When they arrived, they were told that the victim had been attacked by three men, according to a Sheriff's Department news release. The victim told deputies that he had been away from his residence and when he returned, he went to the back yard to enter through the back door. As he reached the back door, he was struck with what he described as a handgun and rendered unconscious.

The man's hands and feet were bound, and he was dragged into the residence. When he awoke some time later, his assailants were gone.

October 15, 2013
Vehicle stop near Dunnigan yields 59 pounds of marijuana

A Vallejo man landed in Yolo County Jail after he was stopped for a vehicle code violation and a search of his vehicle turned up 59 pounds of marijuana.

About 1:30 p.m. Monday, a Yolo County sheriff's deputy stopped the vehicle at County Road 6 and Interstate 5 in Dunnigan. The deputy noticed the odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle, prompting the search, according to a Sheriff's Office news release.

John Harrison Bedenfield, 35, was arrested on suspicion of possession of marijuana hashish for sale. He was booked into Yolo County Jail with bail set at $135,000. He is to be arraigned Thursday in Yolo County Superior Court.

October 15, 2013
Man killed on Highway 99 trying to retrieve items from roadway

A man was killed and another motorist was injured on Highway 99 in south Sacramento County this morning as the man tried to retrieve items that had fallen from his vehicle.

The incident occurred shortly before 10 a.m. California Highway Patrol spokesman Officer Michael Bradley said a man in a pickup truck was northbound on Highway 99 south of Dillard Road when some of his belongings fell out of the truck onto the roadway. The man pulled to the median and got out of the truck to try to retrieve the items.

Bradley said traffic was slowing, either to avoid the man or items in the lanes, when a woman driving a Volkswagen swerved into the median, striking the man.

October 15, 2013
Loomis house fire victim identified by coroner

The name of a man killed in a Loomis house fire over the weekend had been released by Placer County coroner's office.

He was identified as 65-year-old Thomas M. Jorgenson.

The house fire on Bankhead Road started in a converted garage about 5 p.m. Sunday, killing Jorgenson and injuring a younger man, officials said.

October 15, 2013
Metro Fire notes when being pinned in a crashed car is a good thing

Metro Fire reports that it was lucky that a woman was trapped inside her crashed car because exiting the vehicle might have led to electrocution.

Fire crews were dispatched to Sunrise Boulevard and Grant Line Road about 7 p.m. Monday where a driver crashed into a power pole, her car landing on it side in the ditch.

The driver's problems didn't end there: Power lines touched her car and also started a grass fire. Still, it was good, fire officials said, that she was pinned inside, according to a fire district press release.

October 14, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 Crime Q&A: What happened to culprit in 2008 slaying on Salmon Falls Drive?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What happened to the person who shot Edward Chaney on Salmon Falls Drive in Rancho Cordova in 2008 or 2009?
Submitted by: Diana, Fair Oaks

ANSWER: The slaying of Edward Chaney in November 2008 remains unsolved.

October 14, 2013
Child reunited with mother after carjacking in Arden Arcade

A 5-year-old boy has been reunited with his mother after someone drove off in her car with the youngster in the back seat.

The incident occurred about 5:15 p.m.outside a Merryhill School in 2800 block of Eastern Avenue. A woman called 911 to report that her car had been stolen with her son inside the vehicle.

She told deputies that she had gone to the school to pick up an older child. She went inside, leaving the younger child in the vehicle with the doors unlocked and the engine running, according to Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Sgt. Lisa Bowman.

October 14, 2013
Fraud Awareness Fair set for Wednesday in West Sacramento

Individuals interested in learning how to avoid becoming victims of scams are invited to attend the sixth annual Yolo-Sacramento Fraud Awareness Fair on Wednesday in West Sacramento.

The event is offered free of charge from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the City Hall Galleria, 1110 West Capitol Ave., West Sacramento.

Representatives of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies will discuss how to recognize, report and avoid the latest financial scams. Topics will include how to safely hire a contractor, purchase an annuity and obtain a free credit report, according to a Yolo County District Attorney's Office news release.

October 14, 2013
Dinner to benefit El Dorado County Sheriff's Explorers program

The El Dorado County Sheriff's Explorers will hold a fundraising spaghetti feed Saturday in Cameron Park.

All proceeds will go to Explorer Post No. 457 to fund competitions and the 2014 Explorer Nationals, according to a Sheriff's Office news release.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and younger.

October 14, 2013
Butte County man's death is homicide, officials say

The Butte County Sheriff's Office announced that it has determined that a man found dead at a Palermo residence Friday was the victim of a homicide.

Deputies responded at about 5:30 p.m. to a report of a deceased man in the 7400 block of Gene Lane. They found the body of a man, identified as Lewis Raymond Newton, 43, of Oroville, who had been shot, according to a sheriff's department news release.

Authorities are not releasing information regarding the motive of the homicide, as detectives continue their investigation.

Anyone with information regarding the case is asked to call the Butte County Sheriff's Department felony investigations unit at (530) 538-7671.

October 14, 2013
Coroner identifies teen killed in S. Sacramento shooting

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of a teenager killed by gunfire in broad daylight on Saturday.

The dead teen has been identified as Javillion Ward, 15, of Sacramento.

According to Sacramento police, the shooting was reported at 1:58 p.m. Saturday at a shopping center parking lot in the 4500 block of Mack Road near Franklin Boulevard. The incident started when a fight broke out between two groups. The fight escalated into a shooting when one person began firing, said Officer Doug Morse, Sacramento Police spokesman.

October 14, 2013
Prescribed burn with American Indian input today in S. Sacramento County

A prescribed burn at the Cosumnes River Preserve scheduled for today is being carried out by firefighters, academic officials and American Indians.

The project focuses on Plains Miwok burning traditions to achieve ecosystem restoration at the preserve in southern Sacramento County, and is a small part of a larger initiative involving indigenous stewardship practices, according to Don Hankins, field director, California State University, Chico Ecological Reserves.

The burn will be conducted east of Highway 99 between Cosumnes River and Dillard Road within the Costello forest.

Among those involved in the burn are the Plains Miwok, the California Indian Water Commission, CSU, Chico, preserve managers and the Cosumnes Fire Department.

October 14, 2013
Short voyage lands two in Sacramento brig

Two men were arrested on suspicion of sailing a stolen dinghy to West Sacramento.

When the owner of the sailboat saw his boat drifting in the river in the Sacramento Marina not far from Miller Park on Saturday afternoon he called police.

Two men, Kirk Sharrah, 49, and Max Wilson, 41, were met by police on the West Sacramento side of the river and placed under arrest.

Sharrah was arrested on suspicion of receiving stolen property. He was also booked on outstanding warrants, including evasion of paying transportation fares and unlawful camping.

Wilson was also booked on suspicion of receiving stolen property. He had outstanding warrants for unlawful camping and solicitation at a freeway on- or off-ramp.

October 14, 2013
Three young people dead in Yuba County crash

Three people were killed in a roll-over accident Sunday in Yuba County.

The California Highway Patrol reported that a car being driven by Nicholas Hill, 29, of Redding was traveling southbound on Marysville Road near Dobbins about 2:15 a.m. Sunday when the vehicle was allowed to leave the roadway. The driver over-corrected, lost control and collided with a large tree.

The car then rolled several times across both lanes. Three occupants, including the driver, were ejected.

Hill, Lacey Newman, 20, of Dobbins, and Taylor Ellis, 21, of Santee, San Diego County, were killed, according to a CHP press release.

A fourth person in the car, Colton Sullivan, 23, remained restrained inside the vehicle and suffered moderate injuries.

October 13, 2013
Fire kills Loomis man, injures another

By Cynthia Hubert

A house fire that started in a converted garage in Loomis has killed an adult male and seriously injured a younger man, officials said late Monday.

They did not disclose the identity of the two victims, who lived together and may have been father and son. The older man perished, said Chief David Wheeler of the Loomis Fire Protection District.

The fire, reported by neighbors, apparently started at around 5 p.m., generating thick smoke that rendered the two victims unconscious, Wheeler said.

October 12, 2013
Husband arrested in connection with Rancho Cordova stabbing death

By Debbie Arrington

A Rancho Cordova man was arrested Saturday in connection with the stabbing death of his wife.

Kheim Thuong Tran, 41, was taken into custody by Sacramento Sheriff's detectives and booked into the Sacramento County Main Jail on suspicion of murder. His 27-year-old wife's name has not been released by the Sacramento County Coroner's Office, pending the notification of her next of kin.

Late Thursday, sheriff's deputies responded to a domestic disturbance report at Tran's home in the 3500 block of Granby Drive and found the woman dead with multiple stab wounds.

October 12, 2013
UDPATE: 15-year-old killed in south Sacramento shooting

By Debbie Arrington

Police are asking for help from anyone who may have witnessed a fight and shooting that left a 15-year-old boy dead Saturday afternoon in south Sacramento.

According to Sacramento police, a shooting was reported at 1:58 p.m. at a shopping center parking lot in the 4500 block of Mack Road near Franklin Boulevard. The incident started when a physical altercation broke out between several teenagers and another group.

"It escalated into a shooting when one of the persons involved produced a handgun and began firing," said Officer Doug Morse, Sacramento Police spokesman.

October 11, 2013
Punctured sewer line creates traffic back-up on Greenback Lane

The Citrus Heights Police Department reports that the right lane of westbound Greenback Lane between Burich and Mariposa avenues, just east of San Juan High School, is closed after street construction workers punctured a sewer line.

Repairs are expected to be completed in two to three hours.

The lane closure has caused heavy congestion on westbound Greenback, and police encourage motorists to use alternate routes.

October 11, 2013
Cops seek tips to benefit Special Olympics

Law enforcement officers in the Sacramento area will be serving in a different capacity Saturday, working as waiters and waitresses at Red Robin restaurants and collecting tips to support Special Olympics.

Sacramento County sheriff's deputies will be serving lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and dinner from 4 to 8 p.m. as part of the Tip-A-Cop event at four Red Robin locations: 360 Palladio Parkway, No. 410 in Folsom; 1184 Galleria Blvd. in Roseville; 751 E Joiner Parkway in Lincoln; and 7990 Greenback Lane in Citrus Heights.

Members of the Elk Grove Police Department will volunteer their services from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. at the Red Robin at 8245 Laguna Blvd., Elk Grove.

October 11, 2013
Elverta murder brings life terms to trio

A methamphetamine dealer, the mother of his daughter and another criminal who helped him were all sentenced today to life in prison with no chance of parole for murdering a man who had an affair with the dealer's girlfriend.

Andrew Wilbur Jeffries, 34, organized the March 28, 2012, execution-style shooting death of Anthony Ortega, 33, in Elverta, prosecutors said. Wendy Fong, 34, helped him plan it out and provided the car and ammunition. Robert Haven, also 34, assisted in luring Ortega to his death, according to Deputy District Attorney Hilary Bagley-Franzoia.

Sacramento Superior Court Judge Helena R. Gweon imposed the life-without-parole term on the jury's Sept. 10 conviction of the three and the panel's finding that they were lying in wait to murder Ortega.

October 11, 2013
Woman stabbed to death in Rancho Cordova; detectives to interview husband

Rancho Cordova police who responded to a call of domestic disturbance late Thursday night found a woman dead and her husband injured.

Sacramento Sheriff's Department homicide detectives are investigating circumstances surrounding the 27-year-old woman's death. She and her 32-year-old husband were found inside a home in the 3500 block of Granby Drive.

Officers rendered aid to the woman but she died from stab wounds. The husband, who was not identified, was transported to a hospital for treatment.
The husband's injuries were not considered to be life-threatening, according to the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department. Detectives have yet to interview the man as of 11 a.m. due his medical treatment.

The dead woman's name has not been released by the Sacramento County Coroner's Office.

October 11, 2013
Coroner identifies man crushed to death in Yolo County crash

A passenger in a car that crashed into a field along a rural Yolo County Road has died, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Killed in the roll-over crash was Jose Luis Fierros, 25, of Winters.

The crash occurred about 6:50 a.m. Thursday morning along County Road 89 south of County Road 29 when Francisco Alberto Lopez Quezada, 24, of Winters was traveling with Fierros in a Ford Crown Victoria at a high rate of speed, according to a CHP press release.

The car was heading southbound on County Road 89 when Quezada allowed the car to drift to the right side of the road. He then over-corrected to the left, losing control.

The Ford crossed over the road, entered a drainage ditch and then struck an embankment before landing in a dirt field. The car rolled several times before landing on its wheels.

Fierros was partially ejected, causing his body to be crushed, according to the CHP.

Quezada suffered major injuries and was airlifted to UC Davis Medical Center.

October 10, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to man accused of fatal 2012 shooting outside Sacramento bar?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What happened to Elpidio Tellez, who was accused of shooting Jesse James Nunez in November 2012 at the Monte Carlo Club?
Submitted by: Linda, Elk Grove

ANSWER: Elpidio Tellez is scheduled for trial Oct. 17 in the shooting death of 36-year-old Jesse James Nunez, according to Sacramento Superior Court online records.

October 10, 2013
Man accused of stealing meat from Salvation Army in Auburn

Jeff Holzman.pngAuburn police have arrested a 41-year-old man in connection with the theft of packaged meat from the Salvation Army.

Jeff Holzman (pictured) was booked into Placer County Jail today on suspicion of burglary, being a felon in possession of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle, and violation of his post release community supervision conditions, according to a Police Department news release.

Officers went to the Salvation Army quarters at 286 Sutter St. Wednesday regarding a theft report. They were told that between Friday and Tuesday, two people had gained access to the freezer and taken more than 300 pounds of packaged meat. The food is provided through charitable donations to help feed the homeless and needy families in the Auburn area.

October 10, 2013
Crews contain grass fire along American River near Howe Avenue

Parkway fire.jpgUtility crews have been called out to check for power line damage following a grass fire along the American River Parkway near Howe and Northrop avenues this afternoon.

Assistant Chief Niko King of Sacramento Fire Department said the two-alarm fire was reported at 3:26 p.m. in grass and brush on the north side of the river. He said eight engines were dispatched, and Sacramento firefighters were assisted by a dozer and helicopter from the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District.

Smoke from the fire was visible from the Capital City Freeway and Howe Avenue. King said the fire was reported by numerous callers but does not appear to be of suspicious origin. He said there were no reports of anyone seen leaving the area when it started.

It was contained after burning 5 to 7 acres, King said.

Smoke rises from a grass fire along the American River near Howe and Northrop avenues in this view from Glen Hall Park in the River Park neighborhood. Photo by Bill Lindelof

October 10, 2013
Sacramento DA charges both midtown homicide suspects with murder

The woman accused of imprisoning and torturing a business client before he was fatally shot in her midtown Sacramento apartment has been charged with murder, authorities say.

Okumura.jpgMichelle Okumura, 23, also is accused of using a "heated metal implement" to inflict great bodily injury on the victim, the criminal complaint against her and her boyfriend shows.

Late Tuesday, Sacramento police arrested Okumura on suspicion of torture and false imprisonment in connection with the fatal shooting of Eric Jackson early that morning in Okumura's 17th Street apartment.

Officers also arrested Okumura's boyfriend, 31-year-old Jeremy McMahon, on suspicion of murder.

But when they appeared for their arraignments in Sacramento Superior Court today, both suspects were charged with murder, said Shelly Orio, a spokeswoman with the District Attorney's Office.

The DA's criminal complaint alleges McMahon fatally shot Jackson, 22, with a .45 caliber handgun. Okumura also was armed with a .45 caliber handgun, the complaint alleges, but did not fire it.

McMahon.jpgShe did, however, use a "heated metal implement" to torture the victim, the complaint alleges.

Both suspects were charged with torture and false imprisonment. McMahon also was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Sacramento police have said Jackson and Okumura were in a "business relationship" that had soured. The attack occurred after the victim arrived at Okumura's apartment, north of O Street, sometime over the weekend and then was held against his will. They declined to elaborate on the nature of the business relationship.

Officers arrived to find Jackson's body about 3 a.m., after callers reported gunfire and the sound of breaking glass.

October 10, 2013
Jury convicts man of murder in Rancho Cordova shooting death

A Sacramento Superior Court jury today convicted Robert Vasquez of first-degree murder in the Sept. 12, 2010, shooting death of Madalene Thomas in Rancho Cordova.

Thomas, 49, the mother of an adult son, was in the process of relocating to her hometown of Sacramento from Reno when Vasquez shot her to death while she was driving with a nephew on Explorer Drive.

Vasquez claimed he had been harassed by gang members and that he took preemptive measures against a vehicle he mistakenly believed was occupied by the people who had been giving him trouble, according to the defendant's trial brief.

October 10, 2013
Elderly pedestrian dies in collision on Carmichael street

The California Highway Patrol said that a man from a retirement home was hit and killed by a vehicle Wednesday night when walking on Carmichael street.

John J. Maykovich, 82, was reported dead at 8:39 p.m. Wednesday, according to the Sacramento County Coroner's Office website.

CHP Officer Lizz Dutton said today that at about 8:30 p.m. Maykovich was walking eastbound on Cypress Avenue, west of Walnut Avenue, not far from the Eskaton Village retirement community where he resided.

Dutton said that Maykovich was walking a few feet into the lane when a vehicle traveling eastbound saw him at the last minute. The driver tried to maneuver around Maykovich, but there was another vehicle approaching westbound and a collision could not be avoided, said Dutton.

Dutton said that Maykovich suffered from dementia and personnel from Eskaton had been searching for him.

"He may have been making his way back to where he lived, but unfortunately he didn't make it," said Dutton.

October 10, 2013
Kitchen fire displaces Arden Arcade family

While a family was away at a park, a kitchen fire erupted Wednesday afternoon in a Arden Arcade home, causing an estimated $50,000 in damage.

Arriving crews to the fire in the 2200 block of Shaw Street began searching the home to make sure nobody was inside. Other firefighters extinguished the blaze, limiting the spread of fire.

The cause of the fire is believed to be cooking-related, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District press release.

The American Red Cross provided housing for two adults and a child displaced by the fire.

October 9, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What's status of men accused of defrauding United Auburn Indian Community?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What's the status of the trio arrested and arraigned on charges related to the United Auburn Indian Community construction fraud?
Submitted by: CC, Rocklin

ANSWER: Bart Wayne Volen, Gregory Scott Baker and Darrell Patrick Hinz are awaiting trial in federal court in Sacramento, accused of stealing more than $18 million from the United Auburn Indian Community, which owns the Thunder Valley Casino Resort in Lincoln.

October 9, 2013
Update: More details in death of man in midtown Sacramento

Sacramento police provided a few more details about the shooting death of a 22-year-old man at a midtown apartment that resulted in the arrest of a man and a woman on torture charges.

Police late Tuesday arrested Jeremy Daniel McMahon, 31, on suspicion of homicide, torture with intent to cause cruel and extreme pain, false imprisonment and possession of a firearm by a felon. Michelle Kiyomi Okumura, 23, was arrested on suspicion of torture with intent to cause cruel or extreme pain and false imprisonment.

The pair was detained Tuesday morning at an apartment in the 1700 block of O Streets where police were called around 3 a.m. A citizen heard loud bangs, glass breaking and possibly gunshots.

When officers arrived at the apartment house, they found Eric Solen Jackson of Sacramento with a gunshot wound in his upper body. McMahon and Okumura were detained because officers suspected they were involved.

October 9, 2013
Update: CHP identifies man accused of trying to flee officer in Rio Linda

A man arrested today after he allegedly tried to run over a California Highway Patrol officer, prompting her to fire her service weapon to stop him, has been identified by the CHP as Joshua Timmerman, 32, of Rio Linda.

At 11:40 a.m. the CHP officer tried to make a stop on a car in the Rio Linda area, but the driver failed to pull over. The car ran stop signs before eventually coming to a halt.

When it looked like the driver was going to get out and run, the officer got out of her squad car. However, the driver accelerated in reverse, heading toward the officer.

October 8, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to man accused of fatally stabbing girlfriend?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: Whatever happened in the case where a guy named Terry Mitchell fatally stabbed his girlfriend during an argument in about 2003 or 2004 in south Sacramento?
Submitted by: Shynesse, Carmichael

ANSWER: A Sacramento County jury convicted Terry Mitchell of voluntary manslaughter in the July 2005 stabbing death of his live-in girlfriend, 45-year-old Beverly Smith.

October 8, 2013
Ex-Sacramento police officer faces trial in alleged sexual attacks

By Andy Furillo

A former Sacramento police officer was ordered today to stand trial for rape and other charges in three alleged sexual attacks on a stroke-impaired woman in her 70s.

Gary Dale Baker will be arraigned Oct. 17 as a result of the holding order issued by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Patrick Marlette following a preliminary hearing that took eight court days.

Baker, 50, who is free on $1 million bail, is charged on two counts of rape, two counts of forced oral sex, two counts of sexual battery and one count of attempted sexual assault during a first-degree burglary. He will also stand trial on other counts of sexual assault during the commission of a first-degree burglary. The burglary-related offenses could bring Baker a life term if he is convicted on them.

October 8, 2013
Man accused of terrorist threats after shots fired in Esparto

A resident of the Yolo County community of Capay is in custody after he allegedly threatened and fired a handgun at a man in the town of Esparto.

Yolo County sheriff's deputies responded at 5 p.m. Sunday to a report of shots fired in the area of Capay Street near Orleans Street in Esparto. When they arrived, deputies contacted a man who told them that a another man, in a gray Ford F-150 pickup, had pulled up near him and yelled threats. The man in the truck then reportedly pointed a handgun at the victim and fired three shots before driving away, according to a Sheriff's Department news release. Deputies determined that the rounds fired were blanks.

About 8:40 a.m. Monday, a deputy found a pickup matching the description of the one involved in the shooting at residence in Capay. Deputies contacted the vehicle's owner and, after investgation, arrested John Hardin McChesney on suspicion of terrorist threats and brandishing a weapon.

McChesney was booked into the Monroe Detention Center, and sheriff's officials said the investigation continues.

October 8, 2013
Suspect in Lake Tahoe-area bank robberies arrested in Reno

harnett james patrick.pngA man suspected of committing two Lake Tahoe-area bank robberies has been arrested in Reno.

James Patrick Harnett (pictured), 49, of San Francisco, was taken into custody at the Reno Transit Center about 5 p.m. Monday by Placer County sheriff's deputies, assisted by the Washoe County Sheriff's Office. Harnett was considered armed and dangerous, as well as a flight risk, according to a Placer County Sheriff's Office news release.

Harnett is suspected of robbing the Bank of the West in Kings Beach on Aug. 23 and the El Dorado Savings Bank in South Lake Tahoe two days earlier.

October 8, 2013
Man injured when shots fired into south Sacramento County home

One man was injured this afternoon after someone fired numerous shots into a south Sacramento County duplex with a family inside.

Sacramento County sheriff's spokeswoman Sgt. Lisa Bowman said the family, including an 18-month-old child, was in the living room of the residence in the 4700 block of 50th Avenue at 2:12 p.m. when an individual drove up in a dark-colored SUV. The individual got out of the vehicle, approached the front living room window and fired at least eight rounds into the residence. The shooter then went to the dining room window and fired more rounds into the home.

A man in the living room suffered a wound to the bottom of his foot but refused medical treatment, Bowman said.

October 8, 2013
Couple sleeping in illegally parked car jailed after search yields suspected stolen property

Two Sacramento County residents were arrested on suspicion of possessing stolen property and drugs after they were found sleeping in a vehicle near a boat ramp in Clarksburg.

A Yolo County sheriff's deputy spotted a vehicle that was parked illegally at Merritt's Landing Boat Ramp on South River Road at County Road 142 about 10:20 a.m. Sunday and found two people sleeping inside. The two were identified as Alwin Reynon Santiago, 37, of Elk Grove and Tanya Rae Hailey, 35, of Sacramento.

A search of the vehicle turned up several driver's licenses, Social Security cards, documents and personal account information that did not belong to either Santiago or Hailey, according to a Sheriff's Department news release. Shaved keys, drug paraphernalia and .18 grams of methamphetamine also were found in the vehicle, officials said.

October 8, 2013
Sacramento police say fatal shooting in midtown not random

Sacramento police say the fatal shooting of a man in midtown early this morning does not appear to be a random attack.

A man and a woman were detained after officers discovered the victim's body in an apartment on 17th Street north of O street. They continue to be questioned by homicide detectives but as of this evening, have not been arrested, said police Officer Michele Gigante.

She said there are no suspects are believed to be at large.

Callers reported a loud disturbance, breaking glass and the sound of gunfire about 3 a.m. When police arrived they found a man in his 20s with a gunshot wound. Paramedics rendered aid but the man was pronounced dead at the scene.

The motive for the shooting remains unknown, Gigante said. She said the two people who were detained and the victim all knew each other, police said. All three had ties to the apartment unit where the victim was found.

Homicide detectives and crime scene investigators continue to piece together what led up to the shooting and are looking for witnesses. Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call Crime Alert at (916) 443-HELP.

This post was updated by Bee staff writer Kim Minugh.

October 8, 2013
Police suspect 12-year-old used to take watch at Roseville Galleria

miller_leo_anthony.jpgRoseville police suspect a man and woman of committing a variety of crimes, including using a 12-year-old to shoplift a watch for them.

Roseville police said that on Oct. 1, they received a call from the Hugo Boss store at the Galleria mall. Police were told that a family that frequently visited their store was back and that it appeared the adults distracted a clerk while their young daughter took a watch.

On Saturday afternoon, the adults were back at the store. This time, officers arrested them.

Officers said the man, Leo Anthony Miller, 35, and Terry Ziko, 35, both of Carmichael were in possession of false identification. Further investigation led police to believe the couple bought a pickup from a dealer at the Roseville Automall using fake identification.

ziko_terry.jpgThe pair was arrested on suspicion of burglary (entering store to commit theft and fraud), credit fraud, child abuse and other charges.

Police are continuing their investigation.

October 8, 2013
Coroner releases name of woman run over by RT bus

The Sacramento County Coroner's Office has released the name of a woman who died Monday evening when she was thrown from her bike and run over by a bus.

Rachel M. Martinez, 59, of Sacramento was pronounced dead at the scene after her bicycle collided with a Regional Transit bus at Florin Road and East Parkway in south Sacramento County.

California Highway Patrol spokesman Officer Michael Bradley said the accident occurred about 6 p.m. as the bus was eastbound on Florin Road at East Parkway.

He said Martinez was at the southeast corner of East Parkway as the bus was pulling up to a bus stop just east of her. The bicycle and bus collided, and the woman was propelled off the bike onto the ground. Bradley said she was run over by the right rear wheel of the bus.

Bradley said CHP investigators hope video from a nearby gas station and possibly from a red-light camera at the intersection will help provide more details about how the crash occurred.

Sacramento Regional Transit officials said they have launched an investigation, but said preliminary information suggests the woman's bike hit the bus.

October 7, 2013
Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to man accused of sexually assaulting health spa client?

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.

QUESTION: What ever happened in the case of Tyrone Michael Dwyer? On April 12, 2011, he was in court for sexually assaulting an unconscious client at Fountain of Health spa. He was also accused /charged with possessing obscene material and child pornography on his computer. What is the disposition of this case and what was his sentence?
Submitted by: Marsha, Sacramento

ANSWER: Tyrone Michael Dwyer, 58, pleaded no contest to rape of an unconscious person and possession of obscene material depicting a minor engaged in sex acts.

October 7, 2013
UPDATE: Woman dies after bike hit by Regional Transit bus

A woman died this evening after her bicycle was struck by a Regional Transit bus at Florin Road and East Parkway in south Sacramento County.

California Highway Patrol spokesman Officer Michael Bradley said the accident occurred about 6:10 p.m. as the bus was eastbound on Florin Road at East Parkway.

He said the bicyclist, a 51-year-old woman, was at the southeast corner of East Parkway as the bus was pulling up to a bus stop just east of her. The bicycle tire was struck by the bus and the woman was propelled off the bike onto the ground. Bradley said she was run over by the right rear wheel of the bus.

The woman, who was pronounced dead at the scene, has not been identified.

Bradley said about 15 people were on the bus at the time.

He said CHP investigators hope video from a nearby gas station and possibly from a red-light camera at the intersection will help determine how the crash occurred.

October 7, 2013
West Sacramento man convicted in wire theft that halted trains

A West Sacramento man has been convicted in a wire theft incident that halted train traffic between California and Nebraska.

A Yolo County jury last week found 31-year-old Jason Stark guilty of felony vandalism, felony petty theft with prior convictions and possession of narcotics paraphernalia, according to a District Attorney's Office news release.

Authorities said that on June 25, the Union Pacific Railroad controller in Omaha, Neb., received a signal alert to a problem on the tracks in West Sacramento. The controller immediately dispatched a signalman, who arrived at the location within 20 minutes. The signalman saw Stark shove railroad signal cables that he had cut up into his backpack, then ride off on his bicycle down Sacramento Avenue.

October 7, 2013
Firefighters ask Apple Hill visitors to join in 'Fill the Boot' fundraising effort

Visitors to Apple Hill during the next two weekends will have an opportunity to join firefighters in an annual fundraising effort.

Employees of the El Dorado-Amador Unit of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection will be conducting their "Fill the Boot" drive on behalf of the Muscular Dysrtophy Association/Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Able's Apple Acres at Hassler and Carson Roads and on Oct. 19 at High Hill Ranch, 2901 High Hill Road.

"El Dorado County residents and Apple Hill visitors have been enormously generous in filling the boot in the past and we expect that they will give what they can again this year," Cal Fire Unit Chief Kelly Keenan said in a written statement.

October 7, 2013
Elk Grove police offer free catalytic converter etching Sunday

The Elk Grove Police Department and Jiffy Lube will team up to conduct a free catalytic converter etching event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday.

During the "Etch and Catch" event at Jiffy Lube, 9611 Auto Center Drive in Elk Grove, vehicle owners can have their vehicle's license plate number etched on the catalytic converter. The etching may deter thieves from stealing the converter, according to a Police Department news release. License plate numbers on catalytic converters also provide law enforcement officers with information needed to identify stolen property, contact victims and apprehend criminals.

The Etch and Catch event is open people from all communities and no appointment is necessary. The service will be provided on a first-come, first served basis.

October 7, 2013
Sacramento County sheriff to offer collection sites during Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department will join with the Drug Enforcement Agency in the seventh nationwide Drug Take-Back Day on Oct. 26.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs will be collected at four sites in the Sheriff's Department's jurisdiction:

• Sheriff's Garfield Station, 5510 Garfield Ave., in the Foothill Farms area.

October 7, 2013
Man with 8 DUIs convicted in death of Tahoe pedestrian

A man with eight prior convictions for driving under the influence has been convicted of vehicular manslaughter involving gross negligence in the 2011 death of a pedestrian in South Lake Tahoe.

An El Dorado County jury last week found Larry Lee Halverson guilty of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and hit-and-run causing injury. The jury heard testimony that on Sept. 4, 2011, Halverson's driver's license was suspended for DUI and he was under the influence driving a Nissan Pathfinder on Ski Run Boulevard in South Lake Tahoe when he struck Patrick Purcell, 51, a pedestrian who was crossing the boulevard, according to an El Dorado County District Attorney's Office news release. Purcell, a South Lake Tahoe resident, was flown to Renown Hospital in Reno, where he died of his injuries 31 days later.

According to the District Attorney's Office, Halverson had convictions for driving under the influence starting in 1990 in Santa Clara County through 2008 in Nevada. He was indicted by an El Dorado County grand jury in April 2012 in Purcell's death.

Halverson faces sentencing under Courtney's Law, a 1996 amendment to the state law pertaining to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, according to the District Attorney's Office. This law provides for a 15-year-to-life sentence for habitual offenders with qualifying DUI convictions. Halverson, who is being held in El Dorado County Jail without bail, is scheduled for sentencing Nov. 1.

October 7, 2013
Bicyclist seriously injured in North Natomas collision

A bicyclist suffered serious injuries this afternoon in a collision with a vehicle at Natomas Boulevard and North Bend Drive in Sacramento's North Natomas area.

Sacramento police spokeswoman Officer Michele Gigante said the collision occurred about 1:37 p.m. The bicyclist, an 18-year-old man, was riding in a crosswalk, crossing the intersection against a red light, when he was struck by a vehicle, she said.

Gigante said the driver of the vehicle stopped and is cooperating with police. Neither the driver nor two children in the vehicle were injured.

Gigante said traffic investigators are on scene, and the intersection is expected to be closed to traffic for about two hours.

October 7, 2013
Sly Park prescribed burn to take place over next few weeks

Cal Fire crews plan to conduct a prescribed burn at Sly Park to keep the recreation area and nearby subdivisions protected from wild fire.

Crews plan to burn brush, litter from conifers and bear clover from underneath trees. The burn areas are near the corner of Sly Park Road and Park Creek Road in Pollock Pines.

Vegetation burning will happen between 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. over the next few weeks.

Control lines will be in place and fire crews with firefighting equipment will stand by to maintain control of the fire. The effort will begin with a small test burn at the beginning of each day to ensure conditions are right.

If conditions are favorable, firefighters will ignite blazes around the perimeter, allowing a low-intensity, slow burn to consume fuels on the forest floor.

The use of a prescribed burn mimics the natural process, providing significant fire hazard reduction, according to Cal Fire.

October 7, 2013
Yuba City woman dies after walking in front of vehicle on Highway 20

A pedestrian was killed Sunday night when she walked into traffic in Yuba County, the California Highway Patrol reports.

The 31-year-old Yuba City woman was walking west along Highway 20 near Levee Road about 10 p.m. Sunday when she stepped into the roadway, directly in front of a westbound vehicle, a CHP news release states. The 45-year-old driver from Browns Valley, Yuba County, unsuccessfully attempted to avoid hitting the woman.

The pedestrian died at the scene. The crash remains under investigation.

October 6, 2013
Update: Missing at-risk Citrus Heights man has been found

A 67-year-old man earlier reported missing has been found, the Citrus Heights Police Department reports.


James Taylor (pictured) was found at 7:30 a.m. today and is in good health, officials said. He had last been seen at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at his home on Sylvan Road in Citrus Heights.

Officials said he was considered an at-risk adult because he is non-verbal due to a mental disorder.