Mad River Union Morning Report for 7.18.17

The Fisherman at Woodley Island. Jack Durham | Union


We’re in a familiar weather pattern now. It’s foggy and sometimes a little drizzly in the morning, then by afternoon it’s either partly sunny or super sunny. Today will be a little cloudier than usual in the afternoon, but as the week progresses it will see more afternoon sun, with high in Arcata hovering around 65 and the lows at night a pleasant 53 degrees, give or take. The nice thing is that it always cools down here on the coast at night. Who wants to sleep in 90 degree heat?

Shooting update

The Arcata Police provided an update yesterday about the shooting that took place Sunday, July 16 at 2:45 a.m. at 12th and C streets in Arcata. Police identified the victim’s gender. He’s a 17-year-old male. He was expected to be released from Mad River Community Hospital yesterday, so he'll be OK.

“Investigators determined that the crime was not a random act and not a ‘drive-by shooting.’” states a press release from Arcata Police. “The alleged suspect was involved in a dispute at the house with the victim’s friends just prior to the shooting.”

Arcata Police received noise complaints earlier that morning at 12:09 a.m. Two officers arrived at the house at 12:13 a.m. and 12:15 a.m. A loud party warning notice was issued to a tenant at the house warning the tenant that any subsequent complaints about the party would result in a citation.

There were no other complaints until the reported shooting at 2:45 a.m.
Anyone with information regarding this investigation is encouraged to contact the Arcata Police Department at (707) 822-2428.

New businesses

There is a whole slew of new businesses that have either already opened or will open soon on Northern Humboldt County. For example, Dan Willey, the proprietor of Arcata’s upscale Salt restaurant, is opening a new steakhouse called Campground this fall in downtown Arcata. Check out this week’s front page story in the Mad River Union for details. You can also read about the new Humboldt Bay Social Club located out on the Samoa Peninsula.

Elegy for Redwood Auto

Speaking of businesses, Redwood Auto is permanently closed, and we're not happy about it. Read Jada Brotman's elegy by clicking here.

Have you seen this guy?

Do you recognize this guy?

According to a press release from Redwood National and State Parks "Park rangers at Redwood National and State Parks are looking for a suspect linked to a theft that occurred at the Redwood Creek Trail parking lot, one mile north of Orick, CA, on Saturday, June 3, 2017 at approximately 9:44 am.The suspect was photographed in the act but has not yet been identified. Anyone with knowledge of the suspect’s identity or his whereabouts is encouraged to contact Ranger Wright at 707-465-7789. If you any other information about criminal activity in Redwood National and State Parks you can leave an anonymous message on the park’s 24-hour crime tip line at 707-465-7353."

It's not clear why the park waited over six weeks to send out this photo, but we hope they get their guy.

Arcata Ball Park

 There are plans for major improvements to the Arcata Ball Park. Mad River Union cub reporter Andrew George Butler has the details here.

Our 'Mann' in Havana

Mad River Union reporter Paul Mann recently visited Havana, Cuba. Read about his trip here.

Airport bust

An Arcata man got busted at the California Redwood Coast Humboldt County Airport in McKinleyville trying the board an airplane with 12 1-pound bags of Humboldt's finest agricultural product.

Michael Mogensen, 36, of Arcata allegedly had the marijuana in his checked baggage as he attempted to board the July 14 flight. The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office was called to the scene. The weed was confiscated and Mogensen was cited, but allowed to board the flight.

"This investigation will be forwarded to the DEA and the FBI for possible prosecution," stated a press release from the Sheriff's Office.

Yurok Tribe goes after grows on reservation

From the Yurok Tribe

Yesterday morning, a team of law enforcement and natural resource protection officers, working in partnership with the Yurok Tribe, started serving search warrants at environmentally destructive cannabis cultivation sites on the Yurok Reservation.

This cooperative marijuana eradication effort is part of Operation Yurok, an annual action that aims to eliminate illegal pot farms from on and near the reservation. These unlawful plantations are responsible for damaging critical fish and wildlife habitat, diverting cold water from fish-bearing creeks and disturbing ceremonial areas. The black market cannabis industry has also put in jeopardy the safety of the local residents on the reservation, particularly those who venture into the high country to pray, as well as harvest traditional foods, basket-making materials and plant-based medicines.

Operation Yurok Officers found this poached bobcat at a cannabis cultivation site.

“Protecting the health and welfare of the Yurok people is our primary priority,” said Thomas P. O’Rourke Sr. “I would like to personally thank each and every law enforcement officer for helping us to protect our land, water and way of life.”


Operation Yurok, now in its fourth year, has removed from the Tribe’s territory more than 100,000 plants, multiple hash labs and all manner of unlicensed firearms, not to mention hundreds of pounds of processed marijuana buds. The street value of the yield that would have potentially been produced by the plants alone is approximately $200 million. The cultivation of cannabis is illegal on the Reservation, where there is a Zero Tolerance Policy toward all drugs, including medical marijuana. The Yurok Tribe also has a broad set of statutes that prohibit unpermitted ground disturbing activities, including grading, timber harvest and other undertakings that have the potential to irreparably harm cultural sites.

Operation Yurok officers fill full-sized truck bed with dried marijuana, which was later destroyed.

During the six-month marijuana growing season, Tribal hunters and gatherers refrain from visiting their traditional harvesting grounds because of the very real potential for a conflict with armed growers. Ceremonial practitioners, who go to the high country to pray, have similar concerns.


The Yurok Tribe recently solicited a bid to clean up a trespass grow site. The cost came in at more than $100,000 for the removal of the agricultural infrastructure and trash. It is more costly to re-contour graded areas, replant clear cuts and other restoration activities.


For the first time last year, the Operation Yurok team observed a small, yet noticeable, decrease in the number of grow sites on the reservation. A handful of properties previously used to cultivate marijuana were abandoned. The Yurok Tribal Council is committed to facilitating future eradication operations until the numerous threats to the community are no longer present.


“Going into the first Operation Yurok we knew that it would take several years before we would see a difference. Even if it takes another five years, we are going to eradicate this threat to our fish, our river and our lifeway. We were here long before the Green Rush and we will continue to be here long after it’s gone,” concluded Chairman O’Rourke.


Operation Yurok is comprised of the following law enforcement agencies: Yurok Public Safety Department, Bureau of Indian Affairs Law Enforcement Division and the California National Guard Counterdrug Taskforce.


Meeting canceled

The monthly meeting of the City of Arcata Energy Committee, scheduled for tonight, has been canceled.



State Senator McGuire announces reelection bid

From the McGuire campaign:

JULY 17, 2017 – Today, California State Senator Mike McGuire announced his intention to run for a second term representing Northern California’s Second Senate district. The district runs from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Oregon border, including all of Marin, Humboldt, Mendocino, Lake, Trinity and Del Norte Counties and a

Sen. Mike McGuire

majority of Sonoma County.

“Good jobs, strong public schools, affordable health care, better and safer roads, a pristine coast and a strong rainy day fund – that’s what I’m focused on,”said Senator McGuire.
“But make no mistake,” Senator McGuire continued. “I’ll never back down when it comes to stopping the President and Congress from undoing years of economic and environmental progress here in California.”
That’s why Senator McGuire is going to the mat to stop initiatives coming out of Washington, D.C. that would restart offshore oil drilling, sell off our national parks to the highest bidder and take away health care for 3.2 million Californians.
In his first term, working with the Governor, Senator McGuire secured $900 million that saved career training, job skills and Future Farmers of America programs in local middle schools and high schools across the state – so that kids who don’t go to college can still get family-sustaining jobs.
With his leadership, in partnership with the Governor, California has the strongest rainy day fund in history – funding $2 billion more than the amount mandated by voters.
He cut through red tape to make sure tens of thousands of Northern California’s neediest kids – and hundreds of thousands more across the state – have access to nutritious food at school. He's leading the way in tackling the homeless crisis in many of our communities by bringing in millions in funding for permanent housing, mental health and addiction services.
Senator McGuire led the charge when disaster struck and thousands of our neighbors were left homeless by some of the worst wildfires in our state's history. His tireless work continues with the building of dozens of new homes in Lake County along with investing in vital community improvement projects with over $100 million for recovery and rebuilding.
Senator McGuire worked with agency leaders to secure more than $250 million to fix crumbling roads, highways, bridges and public transit in our district. These projects are making our roads safer, smoother and less congested. More is on the way in the years to come.
And, working with hundreds of our neighbors throughout Northern California and Assemblymember Jim Wood, Senator McGuire passed the most comprehensive cannabis regulation legislation in the nation – two decades after Proposition 215 legalized medical marijuana.
Senator McGuire is a third-generation Northern Californian, whose family farmed prunes and grapes in the Alexander Valley for nearly a half century. He and his wife Erika, a local elementary school principal, live in Healdsburg.
Raised by his mom and grandma, Mike worked his way through high school and college – attending Santa Rosa Junior College and graduating from Sonoma State University. He enjoyed a career in the radio and television industries.
He started serving as a school board member when he was 19 because he insisted on rebuilding dilapidated schools in his hometown. He went on to serve as a council member and mayor of Healdsburg and a Sonoma County supervisor. Senator McGuire was elected to the State Senate in 2014.
The primary election is June 5, 2018. The general election is November 6, 2018.
For more information, visit


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