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4 arrested yesterday for homeless beating identified

Joseph Alan Smith Courtesy Placer County Sheriff

Joseph Alan Smith
Courtesy Placer County Sheriff

ROSEVILLE, CA – The four homeless people who were arrested yesterday in Roseville following a brutal attack on another homeless man have been identified.

According to Roseville Police Spokesperson Dee Dee Gunther, the four suspects arrested were 24-year-old Charles David Waldecker, 29-year-old Matthew Russell Alfonso, 36-year-old Ninah Tyneil Winnie and 30-year-old Joseph Alan Ray Smith.

alfonso matthew russell

Matthew Russell Alfonso
Courtesy Placer County Sheriff

Yesterday, Roseville police responded to Saugstad Park just after 8 a.m. regarding a report that a group of people were beating a man.

When officers arrived, they discovered 35-year-old Josef Martin Graven, a homeless man, unconscious on the ground with severe injuries from a beating. Another homeless man, later identified as Waldecker, was found with a stab wound in the back.

Both men were taken to a local hospital. Waldecker was treated and released into police custody.

Graven remains in critical condition.

The people involved were among a group of homeless and needy people who were gathered at the park waiting for a regularly scheduled free breakfast, served by a local charitable organization.

Officers were able to determine that Waldecker had been in a dispute with Graven over the past few days over property that he believed Graven had stolen from him.  The two got into a fight and Graven allegedly stabbed Waldecker, causing a minor wound.  Waldecker and the others attacked Graven, beating him until he lost consciousness.

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2 victorian homes burn in Mission Flats area of Sacramento

Police-lightsSACRAMENTO, CA – Two Victorian homes that had been converted into apartment buildings burst into flames this morning at around 6:30.

According to reports, the 3 alarm blaze started around 6:30 a.m. Friday at one of the buildings located on F St. between 13th and 14th streets. The fire quickly spread to an adjacent building.

Over 100 firefighters were able to contain the blaze just before 8 a.m. Crews struggled to determine the main source of the fire due to the fast moving flames.

All residents were able to make it safely out of the buildings.

The fire is under investigation and the cause of the fire has not been determined.

No injuries have been reported.

Yearlong investigation leads to 26 arrests

justice-department-sealSACRAMENTO, CA – The results of a yearlong, multi-agency law enforcement operation that targeted marijuana cultivators and distributors in Shasta and Trinity Counties were announced today by United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner, Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko, and Trinity County Sheriff Bruce Haney.

The operation, entitled “Operation Safe Counties,” specifically targeted individuals and groups in Shasta and Trinity Counties involved in the cultivation of marijuana on public lands, as well as those cultivating marijuana on private property and distributing their product throughout California and the United States through the use of couriers, the United States Postal Service, and even private aircraft. As a result of these investigations, 16 defendants have been charged by the U.S. Attorney’s Office with federal felony drug offenses, and 10 more have been charged by the Shasta County District Attorney with drug and environmental crimes. In the course of the operation to date, nearly 60,000 marijuana plants, over 2,100 pounds of processed marijuana, 70 firearms, and more than $1 million in United States currency were seized. Several investigations started as a result of Operation Safe Counties are still underway.

U.S. Attorney Wagner said: “The use of public lands in Shasta and Trinity County for the commercial cultivation of marijuana poses a threat to members of the public who own and use those lands and to the land itself. The use of private lands to produce marijuana for sale in other states, often involving weapons and potential violence, violates federal law and creates dangerous conditions here in Northern California. Along with our state and local law enforcement partners, we are committed to combatting those crimes.”

Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko stated: “The focus of law enforcement’s efforts are criminal marijuana operations. The illegal production marijuana has significantly expanded in recent years. Illegal marijuana operations continue to be an imminent threat to our environment, our community, and to our citizens. A collaborative effort of federal, state, and local agencies is a force multiplier against not only against these operations, but against the environmental damage on public and private lands.

Trinity County Sheriff Bruce Haney stated: “I would like to thank United States Attorney Ben Wagner, and the federal, local and state law enforcement agencies that assisted the Trinity Sheriff’s Office with Operation Safe Counties last August. Like many communities, Trinity County has been overwhelmed by commercial marijuana grows hiding behind the Compassionate Use Act, Prop 215. Though there are some legitimate medicinal users of marijuana, law enforcement, members of the community, and the growers themselves know that most marijuana grown in our counties is transported and sold all over the United States. This is a violation of state and federal law. This illegal activity breeds an unsafe environment for our children and other members of our communities. The environmental damage of commercial marijuana production is also a very real concern and is beginning to become the focus of many investigations. Until society decides what to do with marijuana, we will continue to work closely with our state and federal partners to provide a safe place to live, work and visit.”

One case involving an outdoor grow on public land began on June 5, 2013, when law enforcement agents conducted a raid at a marijuana garden in Shasta Trinity National Forest. Approximately 28,847 marijuana plants were eradicated. The marijuana was being irrigated with water that was diverted from nearby Big Bar Creek. Salvador Alcazar-Varelas, 28, of Santa Rosa, Calif., was found working at the site and was charged with conspiracy to manufacture marijuana and manufacture of marijuana. He pleaded guilty of the charges on April 10, 2014 and is scheduled for sentencing on July 10, 2014.

A case involving private property began in 2013, when the attention of law enforcement was directed to a rural property in Palo Cedro after many neighbors complained about the strong smell of marijuana and unusual activity in and around the subject property. An overflight confirmed an active marijuana grow in progress. A subsequent search revealed 531 marijuana plants growing at this location. A search of John Richard Leithmann’s residence revealed 73 marijuana plants growing inside. Two other individuals, Eric Cop and Mark Cop were at the Palo Cedro property at the time of the search, and both admitted to cultivating marijuana at that location. An indoor marijuana grow consisting of 108 marijuana plants was found in Mark Cop’s residence. All three are charged with conspiracy to manufacture marijuana and manufacture of marijuana. They are scheduled for a status conference on May 16, 2014.

Under the umbrella of “Operation Safe Counties,” nearly three dozen separate investigations were undertaken by a number of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. The federal cases are being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Michael McCoy and Christiaan H. Highsmith.

The indictments are only allegations, and the defendants who have been charged in these cases are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

4 arrested in homeless attack in Roseville

Police-lightsROSEVILLE, CA – Four homeless people were arrested in Roseville today after a brutal attack on a fellow homeless man at a local park.

According to Roseville Police Spokesperson Dee Dee Gunther, officers responded to Saugstad Park just after 8 a.m. Thursday regarding a report that a group of people were beating a man.

When officers arrived, they discovered 35-year-old Josef Martin Graven, a homeless man, unconscious on the ground with severe injuries from a beating. Another homeless man was found with a stab wound in the back.

Both men were taken to a local hospital.

The people involved were among a group of homeless and needy people who were gathered at the park waiting for a regularly scheduled free breakfast, served by a local charitable organization.

Officers were able to determine that the stabbing victim had been in a dispute with Graven over the past few days over property that he believed Graven had stolen from him.  The two got into a fight and Graven allegedly stabbed the other man, causing a minor wound.  The stabbing victim and others are then suspected of attacking Graven and beating him until he lost consciousness.

Officers arrested four people, including the stabbing victim after he was treated at the hospital for superficial wounds and then released.

Graven remains hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.

 

Man shot and killed in South Natomas neighborhood

Police-lightsSACRAMENTO, CA – A 39-year-old man was shot and killed Wednesday just before noon in a south Natomas neighborhood.

READ: Victim identified man arrested

According to police, at approximately 11:39 a.m., officers responded to the 1300 block of Pebblewood Drive regarding a report of a shooting.

When officers arrived they discovered a 39-year-old male suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. The Sacramento Fire Department rushed the victim to a local hospital, where he later died.

The motive the deadly shooting remains under investigation.

The Sacramento Police Department urges anyone with information pertaining to this crime to contact the dispatch center at (916) 264-5471 or Crime Alert at (916) 443-HELP (4357) or in a tip to 274637 (CRIMES). Enter SACTIP followed by the tip information. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

850 pounds of pot hidden in walls of El Dorado home

 

Courtesy Cirtus Heights PD

Courtesy Cirtus Heights PD

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA – Two people were arrested after investigators discovered over 800 pounds of marijuana stashed inside the walls of an El Dorado Hills home.

According to Citrus Heights Police, 31-year-old Jeremy Zahn, of Citrus Heights, and 23-year-old Lindsey Loya, of Laverne, were taken into custody on April 9, after officers pulled Zahn over while driving in the 8300 block of Oak Avenue as of an ongoing investigation.

When officers searched Zahn’s vehicle, they discovered boxes filled with approximately 48 pounds of processed marijuana in vacuum-sealed bags sitting in the backseat.

Jeremy Zahn

Jeremy Zahn

 

On Wednesday when investigators served a warrant at an El Dorado Hills home associated with Zahn, they discovered over $2 million worth of marijuana, plus close to $500,000 in cash.

A large amount of the marijuana was stashed behind fake walls. Officers also found two large safes in the garage containing $464,850, plus more marijuana and stolen firearms.

 

Lindsey Loya

Lindsey Loya

The estimated street value of the find is $2.5 million.

Zahn was arrested for the transportation of marijuana, possession of marijuana for sale and violation of release conditions, police said.

Loya was taken into custody in Los Angeles County on Sacramento County warrants in connection with the incident for transportation of marijuana and possession for sales of marijuana.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Citrus Heights Police Department at 916-727-5500.

Treasurer of Rocklin school arrested for embezzlement

 

Fredrick Lacker  Courtesy Rocklin PD

Fredrick Lacker
Courtesy Rocklin PD

ROCKLIN, CA – Today, a former Rocklin Academy Parent School Partnership Association (PSP) Treasurer has been arrested for embezzlement.

According to the Rocklin Police Department, Fredrick Lacker was arrested earlier today for burglary and embezzlement.

On April 1 Rocklin Police received a report accusing lacker of embezzling funds that had been entrusted to him for the daily operations of the non-profit organization.

After several weeks of investigation, investigators determined that Lacker had embezzled over $37,000 from the Rocklin Academy Parent School Partnership.

At approximately 9 a.m. Wednesday, Lacker turned himself in at the Rocklin Police Department. He was placed under arrest without incident and transported to the Placer County Jail in Auburn, where he was booked for burglary and embezzlement. 

Anyone with further information regarding these crimes is encouraged to call the Rocklin Police Department at 916-625-5400.

 

Man in custody for beating woman to death

 

Drake Matthew Courtesy Sacramento PD

Drake Matthew
Courtesy Sacramento PD

SACRAMENTO, CA – The man responsible for the beating death of a woman at a group home in Sacramento was arrested today.

According to Sacramento Police, a woman was beaten to death in a group home, located in the 2100 block of Matson Drive, Tuesday night at approximately 8:19 p.m. Today detectives arrested 28-year-old Matthew Drake on murder charges. Drake was taken into custody while riding his bicycle in the 7300 block of Winnett Way.

On Tuesday, responding officers discovered that a female resident at an adult group home had been fatally assaulted. According to investigators, the victim was struck with a blunt object, causing her fatal injuries. 

Drake is known to have been an acquaintance of the victim and he was visiting her at the home at the time of the incident. 

Police say Drake may have changed clothes following the bloody encounter and are requesting area residents to be on the lookout for potentially blood soiled clothing. The clothing is thought to have been discarded in a trash receptacle near the scene. 

The Sacramento Police Department urges anyone with information pertaining to this crime to contact the dispatch center at (916) 264-5471 or Crime Alert at (916) 443-HELP (4357) or in a tip to 274637 (CRIMES). Enter SACTIP followed by the tip information. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

 

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s top 10 music festival moments

rrhofCLEVELAND, OH – The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum unveiled the Top 10 music festival performances of all-time, as voted by fans across the globe.

Fans from around the world were given the opportunity to vote for their favorite moments from a list of 20 festival moments. The fan-curated Top 10 rock festival moments will be presented in a video montage at the entrance of the museum’s featured exhibit Common Ground: The Music Festival Experience, which will open on Friday, April 25, 2014.

 

The Top 10 music festival performances of all-time are:

1 – Jimi Hendrix Experience | Monterey International Pop Music Festival (1967)
A legendary debut as the most incendiary group in rock and roll.

2 – Big Brother and the Holding Company | Monterey International Pop Music Festival (1967)
Power, energy and an awe-struck crowd: meet Janis Joplin.

3 – Queen | Live Aid (1985)
Stealing the show at arguably the greatest live concert ever staged.

4 – Santana | Woodstock Music & Art Fair (1969)
A singular performance that introduced a new sound to rock music.

5 – Bob Dylan | Newport Folk Festival (1965)
Three songs that changed the course of popular music forever.

6 – Otis Redding | Monterey International Pop Music Festival (1967)
A breakthrough performance in the truest sense.

7 – Nine Inch Nails | Woodstock Music & Art Fair (1994)
Catapulted to mainstream with mud, industrial music and a truly mesmerizing moment.

8 – Sly and the Family Stone | Woodstock Music & Art Fair (1969)
Channeling the Woodstock spirit and rewriting the book on performance.

9 – U2 | Live Aid (1985)
An artist creates intimacy in the least intimate circumstances and makes an indelible connection.

10 – Muddy Waters | Newport Jazz Festival (1960)
How the blues was masterfully delivered to a new audience.

The exhibit will span two floors of the Museum and surround visitors with the sights and sounds of a rock festival to evoke the experience in a visceral way, utilizing video of the iconic festivals of the past (Newport, Monterey, Woodstock, Wattstax and more) and the vibrant, constantly evolving events of the present (Coachella, Bonnaroo, Glastonbury and more), with an emphasis on establishing a “you are there” environment.

Several floor to ceiling photographs of festival fans will invite visitors to examine and interpret the fan experience and become a part of the crowd. Ambient sounds will fill the space: weather, bands tuning up, people talking, radio ads and news reports. Visitors will connect with the intangible elements inherent in the festival experience – identifying with a community, participating in a social event and being part of the creative process.

Pair arrested in Auburn for credit card fraud

Erika Dukes Courtesy Auburn PD

Erika Dukes
Courtesy Auburn PD

Kamesha Cooper Courtesy Auburn PD

Kamesha Cooper
Courtesy Auburn PD

AUBURN, CA – Two women were arrested Monday night after using stolen credit cards at a store in Auburn.

Auburn police said, 24-year-old Kamesha Joann Cooper, of Sacramento, and 22-year-old Erica Patricelanae Dukes, of Antioch, were arrested just after 8 p.m. at a store located in the 2700 block of Bell Road on Monday.

An out-of-state caller contacted police to inform them that someone had used their credit card to make fraudulent purchases at a retail store located on the 400 block of Grass Valley Highway.

Auburn police were able to determine that the duo may be using fraudulent credit cards at the store on Bell Road.

Police arrested Dukes in the parking lot for suspicion of burglary. Cooper was arrested for burglary, resisting arrest and she had an out-of-county warrant for her arrest.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the Auburn Police Department at 530-823-4237.

 

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