Friday, February 24, 2017

Daily Corrections Clips


David Hernandez, The San Diego Union-Tribune

A man has been charged with murdering a 15-year-old boy whose mutilated body was found dumped in Valencia Park three decades ago, authorities announced Thursday.

Russell Taylor, 56, was serving a 25-year sentence at San Quintin State Prison when San Diego police detectives identified him as the suspect in the brutal slaying of Dewan Emerson, police homicide Lt. Mike Holden said.

Taylor was transferred into police custody and jailed in San Diego two weeks ago, according to prison officials and jail records. He was charged with murder on Feb. 14.


Greg Moran, The San Diego Union Tribune

A state Parole Board on Thursday recommended release from prison for Jesus Cecena, who was convicted of murdering San Diego Police Officer Archie Buggs during a traffic stop more than three decades ago.

The decision marks the third time since 2014 that a Parole Board has cleared the way for Cecena to be released. Twice before, in 2014 and 2015, that decision was subsequently overturned by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Now Brown will have to again decide if it is time for Cecena, who was 17 at the time of the shooting and is now  a graying 55-year-old man with bad knees, should get out of prison.

FOX 5 News

SAN DIEGO — Local legislators and law enforcement officials plan to petition Gov. Jerry Brown to overturn a recent decision granting parole to a man who was 17 when he shot and killed a San Diego police officer nearly 40 years ago.

Officer Archie Buggs, 30, was shot four times after he stopped a car driven by Jesus Cecena, a gang member in the Skyline neighborhood, on Nov. 4, 1978. Cecena fired five times at Buggs, then paused, walked toward the fallen officer and fired a final bullet into his head at point-blank range. Buggs died on the street, his hand still on his service revolver.


The Sacramento Bee

State corrections officials launch a plan today expanding assistance to female prison inmates at the Folsom Women’s Facility to better adjust to life after incarceration. A first-ever resource fair today at the prison is aimed at linking inmates with child support, education and job services. More than 30 organizations are slated to attend, and parole agents will be on hand to offer advice during inmates’ transition periods. Those serving time at the Folsom facility have five years or fewer remaining in their sentences, according to state corrections officials.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Daily Corrections Clips


Hoa Quach, Times of San Diego

Two San Diego County prosecutors will attend a parole hearing at Valley State Prison in Chowchilla Thursday to oppose the potential release of a man who was 17 when he killed a San Diego police officer in 1978.

Officer Archie Buggs, 30, was shot four times after he stopped a car driven by Jesus Cecena, a gang member in the Skyline neighborhood. Cecena fired five times at Buggs, then paused, walked toward the fallen officer and fired a final bullet into his head at point-blank range. Buggs died on the street, his hand still on his service revolver.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Daily Corrections Clips


Sami Soto, The State Hornet

Sacramento State photography professor Nigel Poor and San Quentin State Prison inmates Earlonne Woods and Antwan Williams will be spotlighting life-in-prison stories on a biweekly podcast called “Ear Hustle.”

All stories on the podcast, which is slated to premiere in June of this year on, will originate from San Quentin, where Woods and Williams are currently incarcerated.

Each episode will focus on different topics, including living with pets in prison and the culture around the n-word.


Toni McAllister, Times od San Diego

In 1978, San Diego police Officer Archie Buggs was 30 years old when he was shot and killed by a 17-year-old reputed gang member in the Skyline neighborhood.

Jesus Cecena, who is now in his mid-50s, was convicted of murdering Buggs and sentenced on August 22, 1979 to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

However, a parole board hearing is set for Thursday at Valley State Prison in Chowchilla, California near Fresno, where Cecena is incarcerated.

Because Cecena was a juvenile at the time of the killing, a change in the law in 2014 made him eligible to receive Youthful Offender Consideration, according to the D.A.s office. In April 2014, his release was approved by the parole board but Governor Jerry Brown later overturned the panel’s recommendation in September. Cecena’s parole continues to be opposed by San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, and the San Diego Police Officers Association.


Michael Balsamo, The Associated Press

A gang member suspected of shooting two California police officers, killing one of them, was released from prison last year on probation under a criminal justice reform initiative that had no impact on how long he spent behind bars, a prison official said Tuesday.

Suspect Michael Christopher Mejia, 26, was sentenced to four years in prison in 2010 on a felony robbery charge as a member of a street gang and was paroled in 2014, according to Jeffrey Callison, a spokesman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Cindy Chang, Richard Winton and James Queally, The Los Angeles Times

Soon after returning to Los Angeles from Pelican Bay State Prison in April 2016, Michael Christopher Mejia was in trouble again.

An imposing physical presence at 6 feet, 3 inches, with face and neck tattoos that trumpeted his gang membership, Mejia was jailed and released repeatedly for violating his probation.

On Monday, just over a week after finishing his latest jail stint, Mejia fatally shot a 27-year veteran Whittier police officer and wounded another officer, according to authorities. Before engaging in the shootout with the officers, he is suspected of killing his cousin and stealing the cousin’s car.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Daily Corrections Clips


Mariana Urban, KQED News

State prison inmates have been among the workers rushed to help deal with the crisis at Oroville Dam.

Last weekend, as many as 250 inmates were at the site, and Wednesday, 24 inmates in two work crews were still helping clear loose material from the dam’s badly eroded emergency spillway to prevent debris from being washed into the waterway below. In addition to receiving training for their work outside prison walls, inmates are paid $2 a day.

David Hernandez, The San Diego Union Tribune

Loud banging on the walls of a cell at an Otay Mesa prison alerted officers to a unit where an inmate was strangled and killed in late December.

Robert Charleston, 36, was being pinned against the prison cell door when officers who went to check on the commotion looked through the window. When they unlocked and opened the door, Charleston fell to the ground. He was unresponsive and not breathing.

Charleston was given CPR and taken to a hospital, where two days later two neurological tests confirmed he was brain dead.

Gabriela Milian, abc News

Valley State Prison in Chowchilla is a men’s prison in California where inmates can get beauty school training, like everyone else in the state.

"I like doing the facial stuff," Juan Brizuela, 36, an inmate at Valley State told ABC News. "It’s a real intimate moment that you have with your client, you trust one another."

Brizuela was convicted of second degree murder when he was 15 years old and received a sentence of fifteen years to life in prison. Before coming to Valley State he was held for 18 years at Ironwood State Prison in Blythe, California.

Sean Larsen, KEYT

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Many of you have seen firefighters in orange jumpsuits working on wildfires here on the Central Coast. Orange means they are state inmates - learning a unique skill while serving their prison sentence.

KCOY 12 took an in-depth look at what California prisons are doing to prepare inmates for life outside the metal bars.


Record Searchlight

A Redding man is facing assault charges after police say he attacked a nurse at Mercy Medical Center's emergency room lobby while she was evaluating his condition.

James Jeffrey French, 29, allegedly threatened to kill registered nurse Anna Russell, 42, of Redding while she was evaluating him after he went there for unknown reasons at about 8:15 a.m. Monday, said Redding police Sgt. Les James.

When Russell began to check on him, he allegedly threatened to kill her and she tried to alert security


Richard Winton, The Los Angeles Times

Note: Contrary to numerous media reports, the suspect in question was under Post Release Community Supervision through Los Angeles County - not state parole. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation is working with media outlets to correct this misinformation. CDCR also reached out to this particular reporter clarifying Prop. 47 played no role in the release of the suspect.

The gang member accused of killing a Whittier police officer Monday has cycled in and out of jail for repeatedly violating the terms of his release, records show.

Sheriff's Homicide Capt. Steve Katz on Tuesday identified the suspect as Michael C. Mejia, 26, a career criminal with a history of drugs and violence. Mejia has a "history of control problems," Katz said.

Josh Copitch, KRCR News

OROVILLE, Calif. - On Saturday, every Butte County inmate was returned to the Butte County Jail after being temporarily housed in the Santa Rita Jail in Alameda County.

The inmates had been evacuated because of the Oroville Dam Spillway incident on February 12.

According to Butte County officials, the follow list of agencies helped in the initial evacuation: Oroville Union High School District, Alameda County Sheriff's Office, Placer County Sheriff's Office, Tehama County Sheriff's Office, Shasta County Sheriff's Office, San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office, and the California Highway Patrol.

Hundreds of Minnesota crime victims are not getting their court ordered restitution because officials are failing to search for them.
A.J. Lagoe , Steve Eckert, KARE 11

MINNEAPOLIS - Hundreds of Minnesota crime victims are not getting their court ordered restitution because officials are failing to search for them.

Records obtained by KARE 11 reveal that over a three-year period, more than a million dollars in restitution collected from convicted con-artists, sex offenders and other criminals failed to reach the money’s rightful owners because officials made little or no effort to find them.

Elizabeth Larson, Lake County News

LAKE COUNTY, Calif. – Areas along the lakeshore in Lakeport remain under a mandatory evacuation order due to the anticipation that Clear Lake – already in flood stage – will rise still higher due to the rain forecast for this week.

As the water continued to rise, officials in the city of Lakeport called for mandatory evacuations on Monday afternoon at three lakeside trailer parks – Lucky Four Resort, Aqua Village Mobile Home Park and Willopoint Resort – and the area of Esplanade Street from Main Street to K Street, which has been closed to all by residential traffic since earlier this month.

Marley’s Mutts founder Zach Skow stopped by “The Richard Beene Show” for the first time on Feb. 16 to share his story, and the mission of the dog-rescue
KERN Radio

Joining Skow were rescued dogs Hooch, who has become Marley’s Mutts biggest star, and a new addition, Benedict, but Skow shared the story about how the organization came into being and how it’s trying to save as many dogs from high-kill shelters as possible.

“I didn’t plan on rescuing dogs,” Skow admitted to host Richard Beene. “ I didn’t plan on it.”