Relatives of Missing Woman Danielle Bertolini Claim Her Remains Have Been Identified; Sheriff’s Office Cannot Confirm

Hank Sims / Yesterday @ 3:18 p.m. / Crime

A Facebook page set up to bring attention to the cases of two missing local women is claiming that human remains found on the banks of the Eel near Ferndale in March have been identified as belonging to one of them – Danielle Bertolini, a 23-year-old Fortuna resident who went missing in February 2014.

“The skull found in eel river a couple months ago has been confirmed by DNA that it is my daughter Danielle,” reads a message posted earlier this afternoon in the Help Find Sheila Franks and Danielle Bertolini Facebook group, which was set up by members of the two women’s families. “REST IN PEACE SWEET ANGEL”

But the Sheriff’s Office is not ready to confirm the facts of the case. Deputy Sheriff-Coroner Trevor Enright told the Outpost earlier today that he is still waiting for an official report from the Department of Justice, which is testing the remains. “I cannot confirm that I have conclusive findings at this point,” Enright said, adding that he should have more information in a week.

The investigations of the Franks and Bertolini cases have been moving very slowly, but they have apparently been moving. In March, Fortuna Police Chief William Dobberstein told Dateline NBC that they believe the two disappearances to be related, and that a “person of interest” in both cases has been identified.

Facebook post from the Help Find Sheila Franks and Danielle Bertolini Facebook group below, followed by links to past Outpost coverage:

The skull found in eel river a couple months ago has been confirmed by DNA that it is my daughter Danielle.” REST IN PEACE SWEET ANGEL”

Posted by Help Find Sheila Franks and Danielle Bertolini on Wednesday, May 27, 2015



Another Little Brush Fire Behind the Bayshore Mall

Andrew Goff / Yesterday @ 1:58 p.m. / Fire!

Courtesy LoCO reader Kris Wibbenhorst

LoCO readers and scanner traffic corroborate a tale: Another small brush fire has broken out in the greenbelt area behind the Bayshore Mall that some people like to refer to as Devil’s Playground. Regular visitors of this web space will surely sign on to a “this happens” sentiment.

Humboldt Bay Fire is on scene. No biggie.


LoCO SPORTS!: Local 7th Grade Soccer Studs Whoop Up on High Schoolers From Geographically Inferior Places

Andrew Goff / Yesterday @ 11:49 a.m. / LoCO Sports!

Aha! Sports! Today, your Lost Coast Outpost presents a throwback traditional version of our once popular feature LoCO Sports! First, an explanation: See, recognizing that our little blog thingy doesn’t really have the manpower to chase down all the cool sporting events that our local kids are dominating in, what we used to do back in the old days (last year) is subcontract out this task to the excited adults who roam the sidelines. We were happy. They were happy. Everyone wins.

Thus, presented below is a report submitted by superfan and team mom Carolyn Perkins about the Mad River United Elite boys soccer team’s exploits in Oregon last weekend where they kicked many an ass. Take it away!:

Champions! Once again, the Mad River United (MRU) Elite boys decided to push themselves and it paid off.

This past weekend they entered the Rogue Memorial Challenge, playing a year up (rather than play U-13, they played U-14), meaning that this mostly 7th grade team faced boys finishing their freshman year in high school.

 Working together as a well-oiled, confident and passionate group of players, the boys showed incredible teamwork as they faced multiple big city clubs. Besting teams from multiple states, the U-13 MRU Elite won four matches, scored 14 points and kept a clean sheet (no goals were scored against them) throughout the qualifying rounds. Goals were scored by Andy Miranda, Benicio Benavides-Garb, Caleb Coke, Garrett Hall, Josh Duncan and Levi Robbins.

Meeting up with a solid team from Oregon in the finals, the MRU Elite found themselves in their most demanding match yet. The boys played tough, fought hard for possession and did an amazing job of moving the ball. The defense, made up of Luis Melicio, Conor Barres, Sean Handl, Gabe Sanchez and keeper Skylar Carroll worked especially hard in this game to keep that clean sheet intact. While the midfield and offense made many great shots, they met up with an incredible goal keeper who made it difficult to get anything in the net.  After an hour of playing in over 80 degree heat, the game ended up going in to overtime (OT). 

The MRU Elite came out in the first half of OT looking hungry. Continuing to put the pressure on their opponent, Levi Robbins managed to sneak the ball in the net within the first three minutes. This left the team up, but well aware that they still had a lot of time left on the pitch.  The MRU Elite remained calm, stayed in the game and continued to work together seamlessly.  After what seemed like forever, the whistle blew and the MRU Elite took home first place! 

Team photo: (Front row L to R: Gabe Sanchez, Benicio Benavides-Garb, Aidan Atkins-Salazar, Sean Handl, Skylar Carroll, Levi Robbins, Caleb Coke, Josh Duncan, Spencer Olson, Connor Olson, Luis Melicio.  Back Row L to R: Assistant Coach Tim Olson, Kai Gallegos, Garrett Hall, Conor Barres, Andy Miranda, Gavin Perry and Coach Ed Handl)

LoCO will also note that this crew of youthful superhumans are still attempting to raise funds to go crush less skillful soccer players abroad in Spain. If this interests you, you can learn more about their efforts at the Mad River United Elite Facebook page.


# # #

The LoCO Sports Deal: 

If your kids do a great sports thing and you write said thing up for the LoCO whilst simultaneously providing us an objectively good photo, well, we’ll just go ahead and run that business. This deal will be good until a) it becomes overwhelming for us to keep up with submissions, b) overly invested parents make us regret this decision by acting worse than kids in our comment section or c) someone steps up to be the full time LoCO sports go-getter for virtually no pay.

HCSO: Safeway Clerk Threatened With Tasing by Grocery Grabbin’ Robber

Andrew Goff / Yesterday @ 10:48 a.m. / Crime

Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office press release: 

On 05-25-2015 at 08:15 a.m. Deputies with the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to Safeway, located off the 2500 block of Harris Street, Eureka, regarding a robbery that had just occurred.

When deputies arrived on scene they contacted a 32 year old male victim, who works for Safeway as a clerk. The clerk told the deputies he was working inside of Safeway this morning when he observed a male suspect with a hand basket full of groceries avoid the check stand and walk towards the exit door.

The clerk said he approached the suspect at the exit doorway and simply asked him, what you are doing. The clerk said he grabbed ahold of the hand basket. The clerk said the suspect replied back, get out of my way while holding and cycling an electrical Taser in his hand. The clerk said he let go of the hand basket containing the food items and the suspect left the store.

The clerk described the suspect to the deputies and they checked the area, but were unable to locate him. The deputies had their dispatch broadcasted the suspect’s description to other law enforcement agencies. On 05-25-2015 at about 11:10 p.m. the Eureka Police Department located the possible suspect walking on the 3300 block Broadway, Eureka. The Eureka Police Department detained the suspect, who they identified as 20 year old, Robert William Cordero. While EPD officers had Cordero detained they located a knife on his person.

When a deputy arrived on scene with EPD the deputy recognized Cordero from a surveillance photograph taken by Safeway at the time on the incident. The Deputy then placed Cordero under arrest for the armed robbery at Safeway.

Cordero was the transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility. Cordero’s bail was set at $50,000 dollars. Cordero was also booked by the Eureka Police Department for possession of a dirk or a dagger.

Anyone with information for the Sheriff’s Office regarding this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Sheriff’s Office at 707-445-7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at 707-268-2539.

Jason Omholt Arrested by Eureka Police Again After Backyard Scuffle

Andrew Goff / Yesterday @ 10:09 a.m. / Crime

Last week, we kind of scratched our head when the Eureka Police Department sent out a virtual warning alerting the populace that serial burglary suspect Jason Omholt was going to, temporarily, be a free man while he awaited sentencing over previous charges. We probably grasp the inspiration a bit more now — Omholt was picked up again last night.

EPD press release below: 

On 05/26/15 at about 9:12 p.m., Officers with the Eureka Police Department were dispatched to the 3500 block of G Street after a caller reported seeing a suspicious male in his neighbor’s backyard. The male jumped the fence and fled before officers arrived.  

At about 9:31 p.m., an additional caller reported that a male jumped the fence into her backyard and her husband was chasing him.  The caller reported that the male was last seen near Madrone and H Streets and possibly went into another backyard.  

While officers were on foot checking the area, an officer heard people yelling in the area of F and Willow Streets.  As the officer began to investigate the yelling, two males came crashing through a wooden gate.  One of the males was quickly identified by officers as Jason Omholt, 36 of Eureka.  The other male was the resident of the property.  Omholt attempted to flee on foot but was quickly detained.  

It was determined that the resident had encountered Omholt in his yard and the two began to scuffle as the resident tried to get Omholt out of his yard.  During the scuffle the two males went through the fence.  

Omholt matched the description provided by the callers and witnesses.  Omholt was not wearing any shoes and complained of ankle pain.  Omholt was transported to the hospital by ambulance for medical clearance prior to being transported and booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility.

Omholt was charged with violation of parole, violation of probation, committing a crime while out on bail, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a controlled substance, prowling, resisting arrest, two counts of malicious mischief, and assault and battery.  

The Eureka Police Department thanks the residents who looked out for their neighborhood by calling in the suspicious activity, however does not recommend engaging or chasing suspects.


Car Smashes Into Future Eureka Bakery, Thereby Assisting With Remodel Work

Hank Sims / Yesterday @ 9:40 a.m. / Traffic

Photos by Andrew Goff

A two-car collision on Eureka’s Seventh Street this morning sent one vehicle careening off into the future home of Mity Nice Bakery.

According to the unfortunate driver of the vehicle above, she was merrily headed down Seventh this morning when another driver botched a lane change, clipping her car and diverting it into the Mity Nice construction site. The other driver did not flee, and there were no injuries.

Construction crews on the site told the Outpost that the accident didn’t set back Mity Nice’s projected opening date of December 2015. “No, we were going to take that out anyway,” they said.

Sheriff’s Office Release Photo of Homicide Suspect; Million-Dollar Bail Warrant Set

Hank Sims / Yesterday @ 8:09 a.m. / Crime


From the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office:

On 05-15-2015 a second homicide suspect in this case has been identified as Nickolas Ryan Joseph Johnson age 23. Johnson is further described as a white, male, adult, 5’- 8” in height, 175 pounds, short red hair, with blue eyes. The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office considers Johnson armed and dangerous.

If anyone has information on Johnson’s location, please contact the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office at 707-445-7251 or dial 9-1-1. If anyone has information on this homicide investigation, please contact Detective Greg Musson at 707-268-3643.

An arrest warrant has been signed by a Humboldt County Superior Court Judge for Johnson’s arrest for the homicide death of David Ganfield. The bail amount on the arrest warrant was set at one million dollars.