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Cole Mayer

Aiming for a safer community

It was a sunny, clear day but my vision was marred by gun smoke. A dozen people lined up, shooting revolvers before moving on to semi-automatics. I was the only one at the range who had never fired a gun.

Geof Peabody was ecstatic to get me to the gun range not far from Placerville. After a morning filled with gun safety lessons and dry firing practice (using inert bullets that don’t actually shoot), it was time for four hours at the private gun range at Big Cut Mine.

This class was an introduction to handguns, one of six of Peabody’s NRA-certified classes, which have become very popular. In March he had 55 ministers sign up for a special minister-only class, requiring a split into two classes, he said.

Deputies make drug arrest

El Dorado County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a man in Placerville after reportedly finding the suspect in possession of heroin. At about 10:42 a.m. on June 17, deputies responded to the 5000 block of Forty Niner Trail for a report of a person allegedly using narcotics. On-scene, they contacted Joseph Richard, 20. They also allegedly found […]

Crime Log: May 26-31

May 26 8:31 a.m. A 44-year-old female victim reported petty theft from an unlocked vehicle on Camellia Court in El Dorado Hills. 8:56 a.m. A 66-year-old male reported a burglary on Winchester Drive in Rescue. 9:40 a.m. A suspect damaged a vehicle on Cimmarron Road in Cameron Park with flour and water. 10:37 a.m. A […]

Base activity generating booms?

El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department officials put possible blame of the mysterious “booms” and explosions heard in Mosquito and Swansboro on Nevada Navy and Army bases. Officials contacted the Naval Air Station Fallon and Hawthorne Army Depot in Nevada, exploring “possible contributing factors” to the sounds of explosions and shockwaves El Dorado County residents reported the past […]

Man shot by SLTPD officer was unarmed

A man shot and killed by a South Lake Tahoe Police officer was unarmed, it was announced Wednesday. SLTPD provided an update in the case of 22-year-old Kris Jackson, who was shot and killed by an officer on June 15. A search was conducted the same day of the incident and all responding officers and involved […]

Victim gives thanks to medics after car assault

April 16 was not a good day for Michael Gooley, ending with many broken bones. But, if it weren’t for an El Dorado County Fire paramedic, it could have been deadly. Gooley, 43, was visiting his mother Brenda and was with friends on Broadway in Placerville when his ex-girlfriend, Terrie Crampton, 45, of Pollock Pines, arrived. […]

Fire near Sand Ridge Road contained

A fire on June 15 burned 6.7 acres at Highway 49 near the area of last year’s Sand Fire.

At around 2:10 p.m., a fire was reported near at 7541 Highway 49, Cal Fire’s Brice Bennett said. Reports put it near Sand Ridge Road and Crystal Boulevard. Originally estimated between 2 and 3 acres, the fire slowly grew to about 4 acres over the course about 30 minutes. Air attack — a spotter aircraft — from Cal Fire reported that, despite some spotting ahead of the main burn, the fire was advancing slowly.

Two air tankers were dispatched; a house, it was later reported, was partially painted orange in fire retardant. One residence was threatened.

Man dies in officer-involved shooting

A man died as a result of an officer-involved shooting in South Lake Tahoe early Monday morning. Two SLTPD officers were dispatched to the Tahoe Hacienda Inn at 3280 Lake Tahoe Boulevard at about 2:40 a.m. on June 15 for a woman screaming and crying, a press release stated. At about 2:50 p.m., the officers […]

Deer rescued in 4-acre fire

A fire in Cameron Park was quickly contained on Friday afternoon. Cal Fire’s Brice Bennett said units were dispatched at about 2:28 p.m. to a report of a wild fire near Flying C Road — dubbed the “Flying Fire.” Though scanner traffic initially reported a 10-acre fire and structures threatened, the blaze only charred 3 […]

Sexual assault suspect arrested

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Police arrested a man Thursday evening in connection with a sexual assault at a Tahoe motel. Manuel Ovidio Ramos-Munoz, 30, was taken into custody at about 10 p.m. on June 11 after he reportedly confessed to kidnapping and sexually assaulting a woman earlier the same day, according to a South Lake Tahoe Police […]

Lake Levels: June 11

Folsom Lake (USBR) 12 a.m. June 10, 2015 Elevation (feet) 418.17 maximum 466 Storage (acre-feet) 513,100 53% of maximum 976,965 Inflow (cubic ft/sec) 821 Outflow 1,987 at Nimbus Dam Sly Park’s Jenkinson Lake (EID) 7 a.m. June 11, 2015 Elevation (ft) 3,460.40 maximum 3,471 Storage (af) 34,481 84% of maximum 41033 Inflow (cfs) 3.73 Outflow […]

Weather stats: June 1-11

Placerville Weather Statistics Mo/Yr Jun-15 Placerville weather statistics reported by the Mountain Democrat at 8:00 a.m. on last date listed. Date High Low Rain June 1 82 50 0.00 June 2 85 60 0.00 June 3 91 52 0.00 June 4 91 60 0.00 June 5 85 61 0.00 June 6 94 61 0.00 June […]

Crime Log: May 24-25

May 24 1:42 p.m.
 Deputes arrested two adults on Busselton Way in El Dorado Hills during a probation search for possession of controlled substance and controlled substance paraphernalia. 4:32 p.m. An adult female reported her boyfriend, Tomas Silva, 26, allegedly struck her during an argument on Valley View Parkway in El Dorado Hills. 5:58 p.m. […]

Crime Log: May 20-24

May 20 8:39 a.m. 
Deputies arrested a juvenile suspect on Clay Street in Placerville for resisting arrest and an outstanding warrant. 9:03 a.m.
 Two subjects were contacted inside a parked vehicle on Coach Lane in Cameron Park. One subject was cited for possession of a controlled substance. 9:13 a.m. A suspect was placed under arrest […]

SLTPD searching for sexual assault suspect

The South Lake Tahoe Police Department is searching for a sexual assault suspect after responding to an incident in early morning hours of June 11. At about 2 a.m., an unidentified suspect approached a motel room on Cedar Avenue, where a group of friends in and around the room were socializing, a press release states. […]

Distraction causes collision with DA’s stairs

A car crashed in front of the District Attorney’s Office on Main Street June 10. Placerville Police officers were dispatched at 6:08 p.m., Commander Kim Nida said, to a traffic collision with unknown injuries. On scene, they contacted Gregory Gauthier, 34, the driver of the vehicle. He said he was driving on Main Street when […]

EDSO ready for off-roading season

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office is ready for summer — specifically for off-road enthusiasts on the Rubicon Trail. The 15-year-old Off-Highway Vehicle team, led by Sgt. Bryan Brown, consists of a full-time seasonal deputy and eight part-time deputies, who take on the responsibility of the OHV in addition two their other duties, a press release […]

Hikers rescued by helicopter

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s South Lake Tahoe Search and Rescue Team responded to two separate incidents of backwoods hikers with injuries on June 8. The S&R team was dispatched at 12:43 p.m. after an adult male hiker fell from Cascade Falls, suffering traumatic injuries, a press released states. A hoist-capable helicopter was requested due […]

City sells retired K9 officer to handler

After Placerville Police Department retired a K9 officer, the city of Placerville sold the dog to its handler on May 26. Newly promoted Sgt. Ron Cannon said the department retired his K9 partner, Sem, a 10-year-old Malinois, and the city sold his canine companion to him because of the timing of Cannon’s promotion. “(Sem) was […]

Murderer’s parole denied after letters

A man guilty of murder was denied parole June 9 after an exceptional turnout of letters. Lynn Tracy told the Mountain Democrat that, after running an article asking for letters against releasing William Ray Hall Jr., she and husband Mike were “overwhelmed” with readers’ responses. “I could never, never repay them for their time and […]

DUI Log: May 11-25

KENT L. VANHOLE, 42, of San Ramon, booked by CHP on May 11, bail listed as $5,000. CONNOR T. GOSS, 18, of Folsom, booked on May 15, bail listed as $5,000. SANTOS M. HERNANDEZ, 28, of Lincoln, booked by CHP on May 16, bail listed as $24,000. SEAN C. WILDER, 31, of Lincoln, booked by […]

Building Permits: June 1-5

Permits Issued: May 1, 2015 to May 5, 2015 Qty PType Val SUPERVISORIAL DISTRICT: $1 1 BUILDG – DEMLTN – RETAIL $20,000 4 BUILDG – NEW – DECK $109,412 2 BUILDG – REMODL – 1-FMLY $5,000 1 BUILDG – REPAIR – 1-FMLY $30,000 1 BUILDG – REPLAC – DECK $22,468 1 BUILDG – REPLAC – ROOF $26,000 […]

Crime Log: May 17-19

May 17 8:07 a.m. A burglary on Crystal Boulevard in El Dorado was reported. 10:26 a.m. Deputies arrested Aimee Phillips, 44, on Fairway Drive in Cameron Park for an outstanding warrant and alleged violation of probation. 12:55 p.m. Deputies cited Erik Valdez, 21, on Country Club Drive in Cameron Park for alleged possession of marijuana […]

Roth assigned new court date

A man accused of killing his wife was assigned a new court date in a quick Monday hearing. Defense attorney Susan Gellman told visiting Judge Daniel Proud that she had just received nine discs of discovery concerning her client, Roy Roth. As such, she would need time to sort through the information, requiring the hearing […]

Fire scorches EDH home

A fire destroyed an El Dorado Hills home’s garage Monday afternoon.

El Dorado Hills Fire Division Chief Mike Lilienthal, interviewed at the scene, said firefighters were dispatched to 760 Knight Lane at 3:32 p.m. on June 8. When they arrived, they found heavy flames coming from the garage’s windows.

The crew immediately called for more engines and split in to two teams. The first used an attack line — a fire hose connected to an engine — to prevent the fire from spreading to the house next door, where flames started to lick the walls. The neighboring home sustained heat and smoke damage but did not catch fire. The second team went inside the burning house, where the …

Fire damages Somerset home

Pioneer Fire personnel contained a structure fire June 1 in Somerset despite heavy fire conditions in the residence’s attic and back. Engine 38, Squad 31 and Water Tender 38 were dispatched to a residence at 5295 Rooster Lane at about 8:39 p.m., according to a preliminary report by Pioneer Fire Chief Jack Daniels. Engine 38 […]

Harris sentenced to life

A judge in El Dorado County court on June 5 sentenced a woman found guilty of killing her husband — 30 years after she was acquitted on a similar charge — to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 50 years.

Judge Kenneth J. Melikian heard and denied a motion for a new trial during the sentencing of Colleen Harris, convicted by a jury April 15 for first-degree murder of husband Bob Harris. Melikian said he wanted to point out that he “found the evidence in this case overwhelming.” If errors had occurred causing a mistrial, he said, it would still not cause a different verdict. “I cannot see a responsible jury in this case vote anything but guilty. I reached the same decision they did.” In all the years he practiced law, as an attorney and judge, he said he had seen “very, very few acts as selfish as the one in …”

Crime Log: May 14-16

May 14 3:38 a.m. Domestic violence was reported on Arthur Court in Cameron Park. 9:30 a.m. An attempted burglary was reported on Palmer Drive in Cameron Park. 10:38 a.m. Suspect(s) entered a 41-year-old female victim’s residence on Bumper Road in El Dorado and removed her property without her permission. 12:00 p.m. Suspect(s) kicked a 58-year-old […]

Weather Stats: May 2015

Placerville Weather Statistics Mo/Yr May-15 Placerville weather statistics reported by the Mountain Democrat at 8:00 a.m. on last date listed. Date High Low Rain May 1 84 76 0.00 May 2 91 60 0.00 May 3 84 51 0.00 May 4 85 50 0.00 May 5 83 49 0.00 May 6 76 44 0.05 May […]

Crime Log: May 10-13

May 10 1:55 a.m. Domestic violence was reported on Highway 49 in Coloma. 2:01 a.m. Deputies arrested Aleksander Artemyev, 33, on Concordia Drive in El Dorado Hills for alleged possession of a controlled substance. 9:00 a.m. Victims reported a burglary on Flying C Court in Shingle Springs. 9:17 a.m. Deputies took a report of possible […]

Pure Life Collective demurrer denied

A motion to throw out charges against a marijuana dispensary collective was denied June 3 as being filed prematurely. Judge Dylan Sullivan told Kelly Chiusano, Summer Bradley, Chris Brown and Whitney Marchand that the demurrer, filed by their attorneys, was “premature.” Though Zenia Gilg, Chiusano’s attorney, argued about immunity prior to arraignment, Sullivan said that […]

White to be arraigned for murder

Following a preliminary hearing on June 2, a man accused of murder will be held to answer for his alleged crime and an arraignment was set.

Prosecutor Lisette Suder opened the hearing by calling Denise Bye in the case of Jeff White allegedly killing Rick Kriewitz on Sept. 3, 2014.

Suspect dies after arrest

A suspect died after being rushed to a hospital during his arrest early Thursday morning. El Dorado County Sheriff’s deputies responded to the 6000 block of Pony Express Trail in Pollock Pines at about 4:30 a.m. June 4 regarding a suspicious male subject, a press release stated. At the scene, deputies found a male in […]

Warrant served on Tahoe dispensary

El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office deputies served five search warrants related to a Tahoe marijuana dispensary and the owner’s residence on June 1. Deputies, joined by members of the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office, California Department of Justice, South Lake El Dorado Narcotics Enforcement Team, Franchise Tax Board, Board […]

Crime Log: May 8-9

May 8 7:34 a.m. A 39-year-old female victim reported petty theft on Birmingham Way in El Dorado Hills. 1:51 a.m. A male subject was caught shoplifting from a store on Missouri Flat Road in Diamond Springs. 2:53 p.m. A suspect stole a chainsaw from the a 72-year-old male victim’s shed on Voltaire Drive in Cameron […]

EDSO Explorers host regional training day

On April 19, the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Explorer Post 457 hosted its first Regional Training Day with four events and more than 125 participants. Explorers from Post 457 were joined by Elk Grove Police Explorer Post 625 and Roseville Police Post 108 in training skills for real life situations, a press release stated. The […]

Building Permits: May 25-29

Permits Issued: May 25, 2015 to May 29, 2015 Qty PType Val SUPERVISORIAL DISTRICT: 1 1 BUILDG – CNVRTO – SOFFIC $34,463 1 BUILDG – EXPAND – 1-FMLY $31,141 1 BUILDG – NEW – 1-FMLY $604,538 4 BUILDG – NEW – DECK $53,316 17 BUILDG – NEW – M1FMLY $6,900,481 1 BUILDG – NEW – […]

Weather stats: May 1-28

Placerville Weather Statistics Mo/Yr May-15 Placerville weather statistics reported by the Mountain Democrat at 8:00 a.m. on last date listed. Date High Low Rain May 1 84 76 0.00 May 2 91 60 0.00 May 3 84 51 0.00 May 4 85 50 0.00 May 5 83 49 0.00 May 6 76 44 0.05 May […]

Crime Log: May 5-7

May 5 6:28 a.m. 
A 27-year-old male victim reported items stolen from his unlocked vehicle on Pacheco Court in El Dorado Hills. 8:44 a.m. A 15-year-old female juvenile suspect was cited on for possession of marijuana at a school on Ponderosa Road in Rescue. 10:34 a.m. A 24-year-old male victim reported petty theft from a […]

Grad surprised by brother’s return

Principal Matt Barnes started the El Dorado High School graduation practice the morning of May 29 joking that he could not believe the soon-to-be graduates could still lose such important things as cell phones and keys. One student, he said, had lost something very important during the senior trip to Six Flags theme park. He […]

A hot trail on cold cases

In the basement of the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office, through a gym, is a door in a back wall. It leads to what is affectionately known as the “Murder Room.” Inside, boxes of files and reports sit, waiting for a new lead, a break in the case. Some boxes are mostly empty, with just a few reports. But all share a common theme: unsolved murders.

On the tails of an ongoing, highly successful campaign of posting one wanted person per week on Facebook, the DA’s Office is hoping to replicate the success with its more than 60 cold case murders.

Dave Stevenson, an investigator and public information officer for the DA’s Office, said that while neighboring Placer …

Firefighter injured as house fire contained

A house fire on May 24 burned the second floor of a home in Placerville. The house at 100 Bison Lane in Placerville suffered “extensive damage to the second floor,” El Dorado County Fire Division Chief Paul McVay said. But the fire was contained to the second floor, with only minor damage to the first […]

DUI stats for Memorial Day weekend released

The number of DUI arrests over the Memorial Day weekend increased by 400 percent from 2014. Between 12:01 a.m. May 22 and midnight May 25, four people were arrested for DUI in the county, a press release from the District Attorney’s Office stated. In 2014, no arrests were made over the same holiday weekend. No […]

Lake Levels: May 28, 2015

Folsom Lake (USBR) 12 a.m. May 27, 2015 Elevation (feet) 421.94 maximum 466 Storage (acre-feet) 544,000 56% of maximum 976,965 Inflow (cubic ft/sec) 830 Outflow 1,502 at Nimbus Dam Sly Park’s Jenkinson Lake (EID) 7 a.m. May 28, 2015 Elevation (ft) 3,461.10 maximum 3,471 Storage (af) 34,889 85% of maximum 41033 Inflow (cfs) 6.77 Outflow […]

Auditor, DA, Pioneer Fire named in lawsuit

On May 22, political consultant Dan Dellinger entered a lawsuit against county Auditor-Controller Joe Harn, District Attorney Vern Pierson and the Pioneer Fire Protection District for $12,000 he claims he’s owed by the fire district but withheld by Harn. Nearly a year after a jury found Dellinger not guilty of illegally being paid $10,000 by the […]

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