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Danger and Allure

After fatal fall, jetty still a draw

A man walks along Crescent City’s breakwater earlier this month as a large wave crashes behind him. The Daily Triplicate/Adam Madison.
If it weren’t for the danger signs and the closed gate, the Crescent City jetty might seem like a welcoming attraction. And some people can’t stay away despite the warnings.

Mere days after a wave crashed over the breakwater and claimed the life of a local doctor, people again populated the structure and strolled along its ridge, leaving the mainland to walk on a bridge that leads only into the sea.


Inmate enters not guilty plea in murder case

A Pelican Bay State Prison inmate with a history of assaulting other prisoners pleaded not guilty Thursday to the 2003 murder of his cell-mate.

Wayne Smith, 36, is charged with killing his cellmate, Michael Shane Hicks, on Dec. 3, 2003, at Pelican Bay.

Smith currently resides in the prison’s Special Housing Unit, according to Lt. Ken Thomas at Pelican Bay.

Smith is scheduled to next appear in court Jan. 15.

School food distribution fills holday void

For those families that rely on the free and reduced meal program at Del Norte schools, volunteers will be at Joe Hamilton Elementary giving out “sacks of snacks” during the holiday vacation.

Eligible families can come by the school on E Street from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday and Dec. 30 to pick up sacks full of sandwich fixings, Ramen soup, mixed fruit cups, fruit drinks, fresh apples and oranges, peanut butter and jelly and granola bars.

Eligibility is determined by parents’ income and the number of children in the household.

Del Norte County Unified School District Superintendent Jan Moorehouse explained how several groups came together to donate meals during the holiday break.

The school district, Del Norte County, Child Care Council, Wild Rivers Community Foundation, the Senior Center, Rural Human Services and the Community Action Network  pooled their resources.

Children have an opportunity to eat breakfast and lunch at school five days a week; however, there’s “nothing during the vacation,” Moorehouse said.

Storms to last until Christmas

Less snowy but even wetter storms in the next week’s forecast

It’s beginning to look like wet weather all the way through Christmas.

Another series of storms is expected to hit the North Coast this weekend and not let up until after the holiday.
A “warmer and wetter” storm will hit the area late Saturday and into Sunday, according to the National Weather Service. However, it won’t be severe weather leading up to the holiday, just damp.

“It doesn’t look to be much of a winter weather event,” said Bryan Caffrey, a meterologist with the NWS.

Rainfall could total 1-3 inches over the weekend. Inland, up to a foot of snow could fall in the mountains, but will mostly stay off the roads, Caffrey said.

The storm hitting Dec. 23 through Christmas Day will be quite wet, possibly bringing 5 more inches of rain. Rainfall could total 8-10 inches over next week.

A great deal of rain is typical for Del Norte this time of year. However, the storm next week will be “a little bit heavier for this time of year,” Caffrey said.

Brother goes to operating room with knife wound

Police: Sister injured sibling in dispute over her daughter

A Crescent City woman was arrested on suspicion of wounding her brother with a knife Tuesday evening at her home.

Heather Louise Lopez, 27, was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon causing great bodily injury.
“At 5:50 (p.m.) we responded to 200 Jackie Street and observed a male with a deep laceration sustained to the right side of his torso,” said Crescent City Police Chief Doug Plack.

The chief said the victim, Jeremiah Lopez, 23, was still bleeding when police arrived.

“It was bleeding enough it was leaving blood droplets on the floor and and out in the front yard,” Plack said. “And from what I understand it’s a three-centimeter wound.”

Traffic stop results in drug, alcohol arrests

Three people were arrested after drugs and open bottles of alcohol were found in their car during a Tuesday morning pullover.

The driver, Larry Lee Jones, 32, of Crescent City, was arrested on a $10,000 warrant for failure to comply with probation.

He was also under suspicion of possession of a controlled substance, driving on a suspended license, driving with tail lights out at night, being under the influence of a controlled substance and a parole violation resulting from the accrued charges.

“Larry was on formal probation for previous drug activity,” said Del Norte sheriff’s Commander Tim Athey.

The front-seat passenger, Jennifer Marie Jones, 31, of Happy Camp, was arrested on suspicion of possession of marijuana under an ounce and disorderly conduct under the influence of alcohol.

“She admitted to drinking and smoking marijuana,” said Athey.

Harbor board backs forming trade corridor

Proposal would shift from trucks to barges

The Crescent City Harbor Commission has approved providing a letter of support for the formation of a trade corridor on the North Coast.

“We stand to lose nothing,” said  Commissioner Ron Phillips at Tuesday’s meeting. “Yet we could gain revenue.”

The corridor would span an area from Del Norte County to northern Marin County and create a trade corridor linking U.S. highways 199, 101 and 299.

According to the California Department of Transportation, creating a trade corridor would make the counties involved more competitive for state dollars.

Harbormaster Richard Young proposed the letter of support at Tuesday’s meeting, saying “to even get a study under way of how this would affect the harbor we have to draft a letter.”


Klamath students show off their work

Art for sale at KRECR reception

It’s the end of the semester and time for finals. For Klamath River Early College of the Redwood students, that includes public presentations.

The school will have an “In Perspective” event today from 4 to 6:30 p.m. The art reception, symposium and community dinner will be in the Klamath Tribal Community Room at the Yurok Tribal Office.

“The school was founded on community input — what students should know and do,” said Director Geneva Wiki. “We invite community members to assess student work ... Why this learning is important and relevant.”

Students will showcase work from their college art class, which includes both high-schoolers and local adults. Framed art pieces will be on sale for $75.

“It’s exciting for the first time ever the artists will not only have their work on display, but for sale,” Wiki said.

Ashley Powell, a senior, will be showing seven of her art pieces from class this year. She was a little unsure of her art skills at first.

“I never really painted before,” she said. “I tried it and it turned out well.”

Future firefighters?

Tours, safety lessons for 2nd-graders

Mary Peacock Elementary second-graders Tyler Reynolds and Gabriel Provencio try to knock down flaming window cutouts on a cardboard house on Wednesday during a tour of the firehouse on Washington Boulevard. The Daily Triplicate/Bryant Anderson
Second-graders are getting a taste of the firefighting life this week during visits to the firehouse.

At the end of a Wednesday tour, a call came in and the volunteer firefighters had to stop what they were doing, jump in their trucks and speed off.

“That’s the life of a firefighter,” Debbie Wakefield told the group from Mary Peacock Elementary.

Every year, second-graders visit the firehouse on Washington Boulevard to learn about what firefighters do and the equipment they use. This visit coincided with a story from their English language arts curriculum.

Over the course of two days, 300 second-graders from local schools took the tour.

Five years ago, Debbie Wakefield organized the annual trip to the firehouse. She is the literary coordinator for Del Norte County Unified School District, education coordinator for the Crescent City Fire Department and Fire Protection District and wife of Fire Chief Steve Wakefield,

Six stations are set up all over the firehouse for the tour. Students get to not only see how firefighters do their job, but what do if their home or school ever caught fire.

Holiday effort supports military families

Despite all the local charity organizations in Del Norte County, there is one group of deserving families that hasn’t been specifically targeted for assistance until now, according to the Crescent City Boys and Girls Club.

Operation Homefront was created to help families of active-duty soldiers who need help while their loved ones are away at war.

“This is the first year that we’ve done this, we found that nobody was picking up that donation in Crescent City,” said Holly Gensaw, director of the local Boys and Girls Club.

Gensaw said for some military families “ this time of the year is especially difficult, because the economy has taken a little bit of a dip.”

The Boys and Girls Club is working with the Dollar Tree on U.S. Highway 101 and Ninth Street to collect unwrapped toy donations for the event.

“They have a donation box in front of their checkstand,” said Gensaw.

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