Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California on November 19, 2005 · Page 1
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Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California · Page 1

Ukiah, California
Issue Date:
Saturday, November 19, 2005
Page 1
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College basketball home opener Page 6 Saturday Mov. 19, 2005 MILL CREEK DAMS State wants them removed .Page 1 INSIDE . TheUkiah World briefs Page 2 7 IIII 58551"69301 I " I 0 50 cents tax included Mendocino County's local newspaper OURNAL Sunday: Mostly sunny and warm Monday: Pleasant with sunshine email: Arrests made in Henry slaying By AMYWELLNITZ The Daily Journal Two Ukiah men have been arrested on suspicion of murdering Albion resident Kevin Henry, whose body was found a week ago on Tomki Road in Redwood Valley. Early Friday morning, sheriff's deputies arrested Trevor Conley, 23, and Nathan McWilliams, 22, following a weeklong homicide investigation. 7 was on my hands and knees praying to God, too loud I guess, so the one guy told him to shoot me, but he missed, and then I heard five or six other gunshots.' - JENNIFER DREWRY Cannabis killing Henry The suspects were booked into the Mendocino County jail Friday night, with bail set at $500,000 each. Forensic autopsy results Friday showed Henry had multiple stab wounds and died from blunt force trauma to the head. "We had information early in the investigation regarding an individual called 'Nate' that Henry was involved with on the Wednesday he disappeared," Detective Commander D.J. Miller said. "Through the interview process, we made contact with an individual who led us to the identity of McWilliams." . During an interview with McWilliams, Conley was identified as a second suspect, Miller said. Detectives were searching for clothing worn at the time of the homicide as well as other physical evidence .while searching the homes of the suspects late Thursday night and early Friday morning. Miller confirmed that "During the course of the interview incriminating information was disclosed." Ukiah resident Jan Lanz, a friend of the Henry family, was relieved to hear of the arrests. "It's wonderful that law enforcement was able to find these people. I'm glad law enforcement has done See ARRESTS, Page 16 Amy Wellnilz/The Daily Journal Mendocino County sheriff's detectives Robbie Crabb and Kevin Cline work a homicide investigation in Laytonville Friday afternoon. MCSO was called to the scene early Friday morning, following the killing of local medical marijuana advocate Les Crane during a robbery at his home. ^^^ J ,'< J (Above left) Detective Robbie Crabb is reflected in a mirror at the base of the sign that advertises Mendo Spiritual Remedies. (Above right) COMMET Commander Rusty Noe carries an armful of marijuana from the crime scene. Les Crane, marijuana distributor, brutally slain By LAURA CLARK The Daily Journal Les Crane, 39, owner of Mendo Spiritual Remedies in Laytonville and Hemp Plus Ministry in Ukiah, was shot to death at his Laytonville home early Friday morning. Mendocino County Sheriff's Detective Commander D.J. Miller said Crane was killed about 2:30 a.m. in the home invasion. "The investigation has disclosed it appears to be robbery motivated. An undisclosed amount of currency and processed marijuana was stolen," Miller said. . ,. Yellow tape surrounded the Road 307 residence Friday, where Investigators from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office, evidence technicians and members of the County of Mendocino Marijuana Eradication Team could be seen taking photographs and measurements, and periodically carrying armfuls of marijuana from a building. Law enforcement at the scene would not disclose any more information, but a sign in the driveway spoke volumes: "Mendo Spiritual Remedies. In God we trust, Rev. Les Crane. God Gave it to us and no one can take it away. Welcome to our church." In the midst of all the activity, a man drove up and said to one of the sheriff's officers: "I just came by to see Les, but maybe this is a bad. time." A visit later in the day to the Hemp Plus Ministry revealed the darkest details of what happened to Crane. "Reverend Crane was killed last night; I was there," said a visibly shaken Jennifer Drewry, as she sat inside the cannabis distribution center Friday afternoon, cradling her left arm, which was broken and in a See CRANE, Page 16 State Fish and Game wants Mill Creek Dams removed By SETH FREEDLAND The Dally Journal The state Department of Fish and Game urged patience in its ongoing Mill Creek Dam skirmish with Mendocino County Friday, saying the environmental impact report approved by the Board of Supervisors this week would forecast the next step. But Eric Larson, deputy regional manager for the Central Coast region, left no leeway in describing the state agency's desired outcome. "In our opinion, it would be advanta-- geous to remove the dam in order to restore fish habitat," Larson said. • Fish and Game has formally taken the position that the three dams along Mill 'Creek create a blockage for spawning Isteelhead fish. If the darns come down, 'Larson said, the domain, for multiple 'species of fish and other water-borne wildlife would be restored. Removing the dams would also prevent a potential "catastrophe," including In our opinion, it would be advantageous to remove the dam ERIC LARSON, of Fish and Game a complete collapse, Larson said. High levels of sediment stored between the upper and middle dams could create a bigger crisis if flows rise in the winter and that sediment moves downstream and fills the middle reservoir, he added. Larson noted the dams' were no longer operated for their created purpose - to supply water to the Mendocino State Hospital. "Our concept is to work out a solution to stop additional sediment moving down creek," Larson said. "Frankly, everything is on the table for discussion. We'd like to provide that fish habitat and we certainly understand the financial constraints of the county, but we don't want to preclude . any options." Supervisor Jim Wattenburger — who earnestly declared his intention to chain himself to the dam before allowing one to fall -- called Fish and Game's position "utterly ridiculous." During the public comment period before approval of the $386,000 EIR, multiple Mill Creek residents said they had never even seen steelhead on their property. Wattenburger agreed on Friday, saying native fish had not resided in Mill Creek in more than 80 years and the damage to the community does not merit restoration of "a half-mile of that stream." "(The dams) are way beyond historical for the community and advantageous for recreation (and) teaching sport fishing to kids," Wattenburger said. "Helping the fish doesn't outweigh those situations." See DAMS, Page 2 City considering study on Ryder water impact By SETH FREEDLAND The Dally Journal When the Ryder Homes development group disclosed to the Ukiah City Council weeks ago its plans to use Hop Kiln Ranch onsite wells for water service at the proposed 734- unit project, a few eyebrows went up in the room. With the effect this large drawdown of water, which is currently not being used, would have on the rest of the city's' residents unknown, the council voted this week to ask city staff to explore the feasibility of an investigative study. Before the meeting, Cpuncilmember Phil Baldwin asked the city's hydrologist consultants, Wagner and Bonsignore, to propose a work plan to study Ryder Homes' impact on the city's water issues. The firm estimated the report's cost at $15,000. But a vote to authorize the study failed, with only Councilmembers Baldwin and Mari Rodin voting in favor. The majority of the council indicated more information would be needed as to the study's scope and timing. Councilmember John McCowen added his concerns over spending city dollars to study a problem created by others before it was clear if Ryder Homes might perform the necessary studies. City staff will bring back the requested details at the next council meeting, as per the eventual unanimous See CITY, Page 16

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