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KPAY News Archives for 2016-07

Wanted Felon Leads Oroville Police On A Chase

An officer stopped a vehicle at the 7-11 on Monte Vista Avenue around 10:30 am Thursday. When the officer approached the vehicle the driver reportedly took off leading the officer on a chase through a residential area. The suspect's vehicle hit the curb causing tire damage. Three people allegedly got out of the car and took off on foot. The driver, 18-year-old Jesse Marroquin was caught and arrested. He was charged for felony evading and driving without a license. He also had a felony warrant out for his arrest at the time of the incident.

Wildfire In Monterey County Continues To Burn

The Soberanes Fire started in the Soberanes Creek area north of Big Sur. The blaze has burned 23,688 acres and is 10 percent contained. 34 homes and 10 outbuildings have been destroyed. 4 structures have been reported damaged. About 2,000 structures are threatened and there are evacuation orders and warnings in affect.

According to Cal Fire, a privately hired bull dozer operator suffered fatal injuries Tuesday evening.  

Oregon Man Accused Of Murder Is Behind Bars In Tehama County And Awaiting Extradition

31-year-old Edwin Lara was arrested after a high-speed chase with authorities on I-5 near Corning on Tuesday. He is accused of killing 23-year-old Kaylee Sawyer of Bend and is accused of kidnapping of 19-year-old Aundrea Maes of Salem. Maes was originally believed to be a suspect but has since been released by authorities. Lara is also accused of the attempted murder of a man in Yreka and carjacking a vehicle with three people inside also in Yreka.    


The suspect's wife, Isabel Ponce-Lara - an officer with the Bend Police Department - told authorities Monday that her husband allegedly told her that he hit and killed Kaylee Sawyer with his vehicle. Lara also reportedly told his wife that he panicked and hid her body. Ponce-Lara told authorities that Lara drove off and that she feared that he was suicidal.


Officers went to Lara's home in Redmond, Oregon and allegedly found blood soaked clothing and a purse in a shed.

Remains were later found that are believed to be that of Sawyer but those remains have not yet been positively identified.


The Deschutes County District Attorney's Office has filed murder charges against Lara.          

Oregon Pair Arrested After Chase In Tehama County

CHP units in Corning spotted a silver Honda Accord, on I-5, with two suspects inside who were allegedly connected to a carjacking and attempted murder in Yreka earlier Tuesday morning. Officers attempted to make a traffic stop but the driver failed to yield and lead CHP and Corning Police officers on a ten mile chase with speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour. The driver identified as 31-year-old Edwin Lara of Redmond, Oregon finally stopped and pulled over on the highway. He and his passenger, 19-year-old Aundrea Maes of Salem, Oregon were arrested.  

Bulldozer Operator Dies Fighting Monterey County Wildfire


BIG SUR, Calif. (AP) — Authorities in California say a bulldozer operator has died while fighting a massive wildfire near Big Sur. Another operator escaped injury when the bulldozer rolled over. Details of the overnight accident weren't released. The fire that has now burned more than 36 square miles has destroyed 20 homes and threatens 2,000 more.

PG&E Tips For Staying Cool and Saving Energy

PG&E has some tips to stay cool and save energy during the hot summer months.


* Set your thermostat to 78 degrees when you're at home. Three to five percent more energy is used for each degree the air conditioner is set below 78 degrees.


* Shut windows to keep in pre-cooled air from the early morning hours and draw shades to keep the sun from warming the house.


* Use ceiling fans when you're at home but turn them off when you leave because ceiling fans only move air around and that wastes electricty.

Fire Burns Inside Chico Home

 A neighbor reportedly saw smoke coming from a home on North Avenue across the street from Bidwell Junior High School around 8 pm Monday. Investigators believe the fire started on the ground floor and spread to the attic. No one had reportedly lived in the home for three weeks, but trespassers have reportedly been seen at the property. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

Red Bluff City Council Member Arrested For Fraud

 43-year-old Suren Patel was arrested Saturday in Florida after he reportedly tried to board a cruise ship bound for the Caribbean. Patel was arrested for charges of fraud and as an out of state fugitive. Charges include two counts of welfare fraud, one count of insurance fraud and four counts of theft of public funds having to do with a Transient Occupancy Tax that wasn't fully paid. Those charges stem from Patel's managment of the America's Best Value Inn in Red Bluff. The Tehama County DA's Office confiscated documents and computers as a part of the case back in 2015. Patel has been a Red Bluff City Council Member since 2014.

Butte County Unemployment Numbers are Out

More than 400 fewer people were working in June in Butte County, leading to an unemployment rate of 7 point 2 percent. The biggest drop was in government employees. June's figures were way up from the 5 point 8 percent in May and just below a year ago of 7 point 3 percent. The state of California, meanwhile, had an unemployment rate of 5 point 4 percent in June. 

A vegetation fire burns along the Skyway over the weekend.

The Golf Fire started after a cement truck reportedly crashed into a power pole on the Skyway east of Honey Run Road Friday afternoon. As of Sunday the fire had burned 22 acres and was 75 percent contaned. The fire was initially contained, but on Saturday Afternoon the hot spots re-ignited and the blaze quickly spread past containment lines. The blaze threatend houses in the area and near Honey Run Road and Honey Run Road was closed at the lower end of the Skyway up to Centerville Road. The evacuations and road closures were lifted around 7:30 Saturday evening. 

Chico Police located three stolen vehicles Sunday night.

Officers located the vehicles on Park Avenue, West 1st Street, and Salem Street. Two of the vehicles were reportedly occupied with suspects. One of those vehicles allegedly had two 17-year-old juveniles inside. They were arrested and sent to Juvenile Hall. The third car was found unoccupied, but the engine was still running. According to police, a suspect in that case has yet to be identified.

Fire Burns Along Highway 99 After Thursday Collision


A 21-year-old woman was driving in a Toyota Camry on Highway 99 south near Durham Pentz Road when she attempted to pass a car. She reportedly left the road and hit a power pole which knocked down some power lines causing a fire and knocking out power to some homes in the area. Cal Fire contained the blaze to about half an acre.

No word on the extent of the injuries of the driver.

Butte County Authorities Believe Palermo Murders Were A Targeted Attack

 The shooting took place on Cynthiann Lane before 8:30 Monday night. Investigators believe that the victims, 34-year-old Mark Cummings and 53-year-old Mark Fletcher were shot outside the home. 25 marijuana plants were found at the residence. Authorities believe that could have been the motive for the shooting.


Witnesses reported seeing men with guns in a white Toyota Sedan that possibly had a spoiler on the back leaving the area after hear the shots fired. Authorities are still searching for the suspects involved. 

Mosquito Spraying in Richvale Tonight

 The spraying will take place between 8 and 11 pm in the Richvale area which spreads east into Thermalito and north into Nelson. For more information you can go to the Butte County Mosquito and Vector Control website at

Highway 99 Suspicious Device False Alarm Update

All's well that ends well after a suspicious device was found on Highway 99 in Biggs Wednesday morning. At about 7, reports of the suspicious looking device led to the evacuation of the surrounding area as Highway 99 traffic was diverted onto nearby roads. It was ultimately determined the suspicious looking device was a piece of PG&E equipment and the scene was cleared about 9 AM. 

A grass fire burns in Thermalito.

The blaze started in the area of 16th and 20th streets and Nelson Avenue around 2:30 Wednesday afternoon. The fire burned more than 25 acres. Homes in the area were threatened, but fire crews were able to contain the fire before it reached any structures. According to Cal Fire, the fire burned in a field of dead grass. The cause of the fire is under investigation. 

The Two Victims of a Fatal Shooting in Palermo Have Been Identified

34-year-old Mark Cummings and 53-year-old Mark Fletcher have been identified as the victims of the fatal shooting on Cyntihiann Lane in Palermo before 8:30 Monday night. The two were said to be black and one of the men reportedly lived at the home in Palermo. Witnesses say the getaway car was a white Toyota Sedan, possibly with a spoiler on the back. Authorities say that they haven't yet learned of a motive for the shooting, but they believe it could have been drug related after marijuana was found at the residence. Authorities are still searching for the suspects. 

A manhunt is on for the suspects in a fatal shooting in Palermo.

Deputies found two black men with gunshot wounds at a home on Cynthiann Lane around 8 pm Monday. The two unidentified victims died from their wounds at the scene. Neighbors say that they saw a white Toyota Sedan with a spoiler speeding away with three men reportedly with 3 riffles inside the car speeding away from the area after they heard shots fired. Authorities say that they haven't yet learned of a motive for the shooting, but they believe it could have been drug related after marijuana was found at the residence.

Highway 99 Near Biggs Is Reopened

Highway 99 near Biggs is now reopened after it was shut down around 8 am this morning. Authorities say there was a suspicious looking equipment that appeared to be a pipe bomb found near a power pole close to the Biggs turn off. PG&E says that the equipment belonged to them.  

Butte County Sheriff Office Is Investigating A Double Homicide In Oroville Area

 Deputies were dispatched to Cynthiann Lane around 8:30 pm Monday after reports of a shooting. The deputies found two male victims with gunshot wounds. Deputies attempted to perform life saving measures on the victims, but the two men were pronounced dead at the scene. Butte County Sheriff’s also say they found marijuana plants inside the home and the shooting may be drug related. Neighbors reportedly saw a white SUV speeding away after hearing gun shots. Authorities are searching for a suspect or suspects involved in the shooting incident.   

Fire Threatens Two Houses In Chico

The blaze started on a fence between two homes on Artesia Drive in Chico around 3 am Monday. Firefighters arrived and were able to knock down the flames before they reached the two homes. No one was reported injured. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation. 

Two Vegetation Fires Burned In Shasta County

The Quartz Hill Fire was reported near Quartz Hill Road around 2:30 Saturday afternoon. Cal Fire crews contained the blaze to about 20 acres. Houses were reported threatened but no structures were reported damaged. There were also no reports of injuries.


Another vegetation fire was reported Saturday afternoon in Shasta County. That fire was reported in the area of Buenaventura Boulevard and Highway 299 and it burned less than a quarter of an acre.       

Vegetation Fire In Palermo Looks Suspicious To Firefighters

 The Occidental fire began as a one acre vegetation fire off of Occidental Avenue in Palermo on Monday afternoon, but had grown to 15 acres in less than an hour - threatening two structures as well as nearby railroad tracks. According to CalFire, it took twenty-one firefighters, five engines, four water tenders and a bulldozer to battle the fire and they were able to stop it from reaching the structures.


Officials say the fire was definitely human caused, and that a lot of people are under a false assumption that the frequent rains this year made fires less of a risk. CalFire officials say that there's actually MORE grass to burn due to this year's wetter weather, and warn residents not to neglect fire safety precautions. 

Victims Of Siskiyou County Double Homicide Have Been Identified

The Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office announced Thursday that 69-year-old James Doyle and 67-year-old Carol Doyle were the two found dead at a home on the 14000 block County Road A12 in Big Springs on Tuesday. Investigators believe that the married couple was murdered, but they say there was no apparent motive. Investigators say they found what they believe to be the murder weapon. No word on what that weapon is.

The incident is still under investigation.    

Chain Reaction Crash In Redding Leaves 3-year-old Injured

A Buick driven by 26-year-old Shilee Davidson reportedly merged unsafely onto the southbound lane of Interstate 5 from Cypress Avenue and collided with a semi truck after 2:30 Wednesday afternoon. Davidson's car then went into another lane and collided with a Nissan pickup. The truck was sent off the road where it collided with a tree. A 3-year-old girl in the truck was taken to Mercy Medical Center with severe head trauma. The driver of the truck, indentified as 31-year-old Russell McWilliams is reportedly the new head coach of the varsity football team and will be a social science teacher at Enterprise High School. He suffered minor injuries. No word any other injuries. 

Anderson Man Carjacks His Mother's Truck

Jeannie Cole told deputies that her son 35-year-old Jason Thompson had allegedly assaulted her and then stole her pickup truck on Setting Sun Drive around 8:30 pm Wednesday. Deputies saw the truck a couple hours later and stopped it on Canyon Road and Highway 273. Thompson was arrested and charged with auto theft, carjacking, and driving with a suspended license. 


Cole believes her son could have been under the influence of narcotics.

Chico Police Department Warning Residents About Phone Scams

One of those scams involves someone claiming to be from the IRS. The caller says that back taxes are owed and threatens to make an arrest if the payments are not made. 
Another phone scam involves someone claiming to be a Microsoft employee. The scammer says that they are monitoring a computer issue on the resident's computer and asks to allow remote access to their computer. The scammer will then download files from the victim's computer that have password and bank account information.   
There have also been various phone scams involving bogus charities reported recently.
Chico PD says if you recieve a suspicious phone call to hang up and then report the incident to the police.  

Local Water Districts See A Reduction In Water Usage

The State Water Resources Control Board came out with its water use numbers for the month of May. Statewide residential water use was cut by 28 percent, but local water districts did an even better job of saving water. Paradise saw a 50 percent water reduction in May. Del Oro was down at over 46 percent and Oroville was at 44 percent. Chico saw a reduction at over 41 percent.   
Officials from the State Water Board praised state residents for their phenomenal ongoing water conservation efforts.

Masked Man Arrested After Spraying Chemicals At Family

The Glenn County Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday that they arrested 56-year-old Francis Garmin for an alleged attack on a family at a home on County Road 64 near State Route 45 in the Princeton area around 2:30 Friday morning.


The incident began when 31-year-old Amy Deniz was reportedly awakened by a masked intruder spraying chemicals from aerosol cans at her and her two children. The family dog reportedly chased the suspect out of the home. Officers found a vehicle belonging to Garmin stuck in the ditch near the home.


Investigators learned that the victim had a restraining order placed against Garmin. He was found at his home in Willows and was arrested.

Authorities Investigating Garage Fire In Redding.

The fire started at a detached garage on Gold Street and reportedly spread to nearby vegetation around 7 pm Tuesday. Firefighters arrived and found the structure fully engulfed in flames. They were able to keep the fire from spreading to other nearby structures. The owner of the property reportedly runs an air conditioning business out of the garage. He reportedly was not at home when the fire happened and no one was reported injured. Authorities believe the fire may have started on the outside of the garage, but the cause remains under investigation.

Body Found In Feather River Identified

17-year-old Kristopher McDonald of Oroville was found near the Gridley boat launch on Sunday and has been confirmed by Butte County authorities as the 17 year old who went missing last Wednesday. McDonald was rafting with four other boys when they got caught in the currents. McDonald entered the water and never resurfaced. According to authorities, he was not wearing a life vest.  


Oroville Woman Uses Knife, Hypodermic Needle To Rob Convenience Store

A woman entered the AM/PM on Oro Dam Boulevard around 4 am Thursday when she allegedly threatened the clerk with a knife and an hypodermic needle. The suspect, indentified as 30-year-old Allyson Carper allegedly took three candy bars and a soda. Carper reportedly laughed and told the clerk to "Call the police and tell them I robbed you" as she fled from the business. Officers searched the area and found Carper behind Raley's where she was arrested for robbery.  


Rescue Officials Fear The Worst For Missing Teen

Authorities fear the worst for a teen who fell out of a raft Wednesday evening near the Thermalito Afterbay. Eyewitnesses say the 17 year old went underwater near the Afterbay outlet on the Feather River Wednesday evening about 5:30. Rescue Crews looked for him during the evening hours and tried again Thursday morning but water flows were deemed too dangerous. It's unknown when the search will resume but rescuers don't hold out much hope for the teen boy. 


Wildfire In Placer And El Dorado Counties Continues To Burn

The Trailhead Fire started along the Middle Fork of the American River near Todd Valley Tuesday afternoon. The fire has burned 2,151 acres and is 12% contained. 2,600 structures are threatened. On Thursday evacuations in Volcanoville, in El Dorado County, were upgraded from voluntary to mandatory. Mandatory evacuations are still in effect in areas affected in Placer County.



According to Cal Fire, the blaze became more active Thursday, but crews made great progress on the Placer side of the fire.   


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