71-year-old bicyclist dies after being hit by car Monday morning in Eagle

Eagle Police continue to investigate a fatal car vs. bicycle crash that occurred near the Iron Eagle Drive/Edgewood Lane intersection early Monday.

Cyclist Joann Baker was pronounced dead about three hours after the crash occurred. The adult female driver of the car did not appear to be injured.

Officers began their investigation just before 9 a.m. Monday when they got a report that a passenger car going southbound on Edgewood Lane collided with a bicyclist, who was on Edgewood near the crosswalk at the Iron Eagle Drive intersection.

Witnesses say the 71-year-old Baker was crossing Edgewood east-to-west when she was hit.

The force of the impact resulted in immediate and serious injury to Baker. Paramedics arrived moments later and transported her to a nearby hospital, where she was pronounced dead just before noon Monday.

Baker was wearing a helmet when the crash occurred.

Officials with the Ada County Coroner’s Office listed Baker’s cause of death as blunt force trauma and the manner of death as accidental.

Crash reconstruction experts and police continue to investigate what happened.

No charges have been filed at this time. Anyone with information should call Eagle Police at (208) 938-2260.

 

 

Searchers recover body of 21-year-old man who fell into Lucky Peak last month

A Kuna couple who specializes in underwater sonar searches has located and recovered the body of 21-year-old Christian V. Dale, who fell into Lucky Peak in late July.

Ada County Sheriff’s Office marine patrol deputies had been searching for Dale since July 29, when he fell off the back of a boat near Gooseneck Bay in Lucky Peak and didn’t come back up.

Kuna residents Gene and Sandy Ralston, who specialize in underwater side-scan sonar searches and often assist law enforcement in recovery efforts with their specialized equipment, were able to locate the body, which was almost 200 feet down by the bottom of the reservoir, early Friday morning.

The Ralstons were then able use a remote-controlled unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) to recover the body.

Deputies have been working on the case since just after 9 p.m. on July 29, when they got a report that a man fell off a moving boat that night.

There were nine people on the boat at the time. They told deputies they had been on the water most of the day and were on their way to the boat ramp at Barclay Bay when a hat flew out of the boat near Gooseneck Bay.

When the driver of the boat turned to go retrieve the hat, Dale fell off the bow where he had been sitting. He was not wearing a life jacket.

The people in the boat immediately began searching for Dale but did not see him, so they drove to the Spring Shores Marina to call for help.

Ada County Sheriff’s marine patrol deputies arrived a short time later to search the water, while helicopter pilots searched the reservoir and shoreline with infrared technology in case the 21-year-old had been able to swim to shore and get out of the water.

Deputies continued the search over the next few days using sonar. They also used an unmanned aerial vehicle (drone) to search the area from above but were not able to locate Dale.

The search was suspended until Friday morning, when Ralston was available to help. It took about two hours to find and then recover the body Friday morning.

The Ada County Coroner’s Office will determine the cause and manner of death.

The case is still under investigation. No charges or citations have been issued at this time. The other nine people on the boat when Dale fell over have cooperated fully with investigators.

We would like to thank Gene and Sandy Ralston, and their company, Ralston & Associates, for their help.

Ada County now has text notification system to help people avoid missing court dates

By now, you’ve likely heard there are too many people in the Ada County Jail. We are pretty much close to being full every day – and a decent number of those inmates are incarcerated because they’ve missed court dates and keep getting new charges.

We really want them to avoid that phenomenon, so we are going to try something new. We’re going to text people to remind them to show up for court – if they want our help.

The crime charged most often in Ada County is failure to appear (FTA). By a lot. FTAs comprised over 18% of all jail bookings in 2017. The next highest jail booking charge was possession of a controlled substance, which made up almost 10% of all booked arrests.

We surveyed people charged with FTA last year and found that 50% said they just didn’t know or forgot about their scheduled court date; 24% cited transportation issues; 8% said they had work or childcare conflicts.

Thanks to our partnership with the MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge, we now have a text-based notification system in place that will let people know when their court dates are happening.

All people have to do is sign up at https://adacounty.id.gov/MyCourtDateThey will get a text notification a week before their hearing is scheduled and a second text the day before. (Anyone who has been to the dentist lately will be familiar with the process.)

Here’s what a notification looks like:

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If someone has more than one court case happening, they must submit a different form for each case to get all the notifications. Also, the new system is only set up for criminal cases, so you can’t get text notifications for civil court appearances.

This is a totally “opt-in” voluntary system – people aren’t required to sign up. But they should. Those FTAs can really pile up and make it harder for people to get out of the churn of jail and court all the time.

 

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One thing we have to make crystal clear is that failure to get the reminder does not excuse anyone from missing a court date. This is an extra tool to help them remember to show up. Getting to court, on time, is totally the responsibility of whoever is charged.

What we do want to do is make it as easy as possible for people to sign up. So we’ll give sign-up forms to everyone who posts bond and leaves the jail. We have the online sign-up option available. It’s free. And it should help a lot of people avoid FTA charges piling up.

(People who want to sign up that don’t have their case number can look it up on https://mycourts.idaho.gov).

After years of working on a plan to reduce Ada County’s Jail population by 15%-to-19%, we are thrilled to finally be able to put our plan in action — thanks to the MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge.

The Foundation has awarded Ada County $1 million to help us realize our vision — and the text notification system is only one of several programs and strategies we’ll be telling you about over the next year.

We’ve added people in key parts of the court system to try to identify people who are in jail who shouldn’t be – and find ways to get those cases wrapped up.

We are working towards expanding our pretrial programs to create options outside of the traditional cash-based bond system.

We are also working on reducing current disparities for Native and African American inmates in our jail.

That’s just some of what we are working on. There is a lot more story to tell, so stay tuned.

Boise man believed to have drowned in Lucky Peak Reservoir

After three days of searching for a Boise man who fell off a boat in Lucky Peak reservoir, detectives feel certain he failed to make it to shore and has drowned.

Friends of Christian Vernon Dale, 21, reported the man had fallen off a moving boat Sunday night around 9:00. There were nine other people on-board when it happened. They told deputies they had been on the water most of the day and were on their way to the boat ramp at Barclay Bay when a hat flew out of the boat near Gooseneck Bay. When the driver of the boat turned to go retrieve the hat, Dale fell off the bow where he had been sitting.

The witnesses immediately searched for Dale but did not see him, so they drove to the Spring Shores marina to call for help. Ada County Sheriff’s marine patrol deputies responded to search the water. A helicopter searched the entire reservoir and all shorelines with infrared technology in case the 21-year-old had been able to swim to shore and get out of the water.

Dale has not been seen since the moment he fell overboard. Deputies have used sonar equipment to search the water and an unmanned aerial vehicle to search from above. Water movement and depth have made the search challenging.
The reservoir is about 105 feet deep in the area where Dale went into the water.

The other nine people on the boat when Dale fell over and the man’s family members have cooperated fully with deputies and helped in the search. Given the amount of time the 21-year-old has been missing, deputies believe he drowned. They consider the search a recovery effort.

Any time a person is missing and unaccounted for, detectives begin an investigation to determine exactly what happened. There is no information or evidence at this time to suggest foul play. Dale was not wearing a lifejacket.

Anyone who is at Lucky Peak reservoir and sees anything suspicious is asked to call Ada County Dispatch at 208-377-6790.

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CodeRed emergency notification system “all call” test sent to thousands of Ada County phone numbers Tuesday

If you got an automated call from the Ada County Sheriff’s Office about the CodeRed Community Notification System from a funky 866 area code Tuesday, you are not alone.

Pretty much everybody else in Ada County got the same call – especially if you still have a landline. It wasn’t spam or a scam. It was a test.

CodeRed performed a one-time “All Call” test Tuesday, where they try to reach as many phones in the county as possible to encourage people to sign up for the emergency notification system.

If you have already signed up for CodeRed, you don’t need to sign up again. You are good.

If you haven’t signed up for the emergency notification service, we strongly encourage you to do so.

Under our old “reverse-911” system, our Emergency 911 dispatchers could send an emergency notification message to all listed Ada County landlines or as narrow as a single address.

The proliferation of cell phones and alternate ways people communicate with them – including texting and email – rendered that system less effective.

So we added Code Red in 2015, which provides geographic emergency notifications by call, text, and email. Unlike the old “reverse 911” with landlines, you have to sign up for it.

Tuesday’s all-call went out to all of the landlines in our database and cell phones that were already signed up.

CodeRed also contacted all the major cell phone carriers and asked them to send the automated message to whatever Ada County phone numbers they had.

So even if you haven’t signed up for CodeRed, you probably got a phone call from (866) 419-5000 asking you to sign up.

Which you should absolutely do. You choose the type of message you want to receive which includes phone calls, text messages, emails, and social media.

CodeRED is used to keep you informed of incidents and events that can immediately impact your safety.

A few examples of why CodeRED would be used would be

to notify you of criminal activity by your neighborhood or workplace (depending on the address you register), evacuation notices, wildfires, floods, and missing person cases.

CodeRED also includes a call back feature that allows you to call the number back and hear the message in case you miss the call.

To register, please go to https://public.coderedweb.com/CNE/en-US/BF01DC4DD213

Because the “all call” is done automatically, if a call goes to phone number where no one answers and doesn’t have voice mail set up, it will automatically redial that number two more times.

Here is the text of Tuesday’s call:

“This is the Ada County Sheriff’s Office 911 Emergency Communications Center with an important message for all residents and businesses located in Ada County.

We have licensed the CodeRED Community Notification System to help disseminate important or critical information.

We encourage all residents and businesses to go to the Ada County Sheriff’s Office website, click on the CodeRED logo located at the right side of the page and enter their contact information, including additional phone numbers, text information and email addresses. This will ensure that the data in our system is accurate and current.

If you know of anyone who did not receive this call who lives in Ada County please encourage them to visit the Ada County Sheriff’s Office website and enter their information.

If you do not have Internet access, please contact a friend or family member to help add your contact information to the emergency contact database. You can also call the Ada County Sheriff’s Office 911 Emergency Communications Center directly at 208-377-6790 for assistance. That is 208-377-6790.

Go to: https://adasheriff.org/

Thank you.”

Update: Detectives find pickup used in a burglary off Warm Springs Ave. in June

Detectives want to thank everyone who contacted us with tips that helped them find a white pickup truck thieves used to steal several thousand dollars worth of landscaping equipment and tools from the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation last month.

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Deputies began their investigation June 17 after getting a report of a break-in at the park office in the 5600 block of Warm Springs Avenue earlier that morning.

Deputies determined that someone broke into two locked storage sheds and stole several items of landscaping and equipment and tools, including a chainsaw, a hedge trimmer, a leaf blower, a toolbox, and two generators.

Surveillance footage captured images of a white pickup truck, which appears to be an early-era 2010s Nissan Titan, with the stolen items in the back, driving away from the scene that morning.

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Detectives located the truck and owner just hours after the images were shared on social media. Detectives are actively investigating the case. No arrests have been made at this time.

 

Boise couple arrested on felony injury to child charges

Ada County Sheriff’s detectives declared six children to be in imminent danger last week due to filthy and dangerous living conditions in their south Boise-area home.

Deputies arrested the children’s parents – 42-year-old Jamie P. Rose and 43-year-old Lawrence F. Rose – Thursday afternoon on felony injury to child charges.

Deputies took both Jamie and Lawrence Rose to the Ada County Jail, where they were released after posting $25,000 bond each.

Detectives began their investigation in May after being contacted by a third party who had concerns about the living conditions inside the Rose family home in the Lake Hazel Road/Seabreeze Way neighborhood.

Detectives had investigated similar reports at the same home over the last several years but were not able to search inside or talk to the children.

For this particular case, detectives were able to develop enough evidence to get a search warrant for the home, which they served on Thursday morning.

When deputies arrived, they found an overwhelming odor of animal feces and urine coming from inside. They discovered animal feces on the ground and several full cat litter boxes in several rooms inside.

Most of the home was covered with dirty clothes and other various debris and trash.

One bathroom only had a toilet – there was no sink or shower, and the walls were full of holes.

The kitchen was covered with trash and decaying food, and several flies flew out of a microwave when the door was opened.

There was also a bottle of morphine left on a table that was accessible to the children inside.

Deputies declared the Roses’ six children – who range in age from 14-to-4-years-old — to be in imminent danger and placed them in the custody of Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.

The Idaho Humane Society removed two dogs and a cat from the home.

Jamie and Lawrence Rose are set to make their next court appearance July 6. The crime of felony injury to child is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

Ada County Sheriff’s Office 2019 budget request asks for staffing increase at the jail

Ada County is growing at an incredible rate. Since the last US Census in 2010, Ada County has gained 78,500 new residents – from 392,000 to 471,000. Forbes.com has christened Boise as the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the U.S. All that growth represents a significant and growing strain on Ada County’s infrastructure.

For the Ada County Sheriff’s Office, those demographic changes mean more citizen calls for service, more demands for our deputies’ time, more inmates in the Ada County Jail — and more work by support staff to keep everything running safely and efficiently.

Frankly put, we need more employees to make sure we can continue to deliver the services necessary to keep Ada County a safe place to live, work and play.

To do that to the best of our ability, we are asking the Ada County Board of Commissions for an additional $4.7 million to our budget so we can add 39 new employees in 2019. If that seems like a lot to ask for, well, it is – but it’s also way overdue.

We have been very conservative on adding new personnel over the last decade and it has caught up to us. That strain is most keenly felt in the Ada County Jail.

We have room for 1116 inmates in our main jail facility. To operate with safety and efficiency, we need to be at 85% capacity or less. That equals 949 inmates – a number that stretches our resources to their limits.

We haven’t been under 949 since May 2017. We routinely have days where the count is over 1,100. On May 31 of this year, we hit a record high of 1,127.

While our long term needs require a significant infrastructure investment in more beds, our immediate need is to catch up with our staff.  There are times where we have an inmate-to-deputy ratio in our dorm housing units of 1-to-100. Our ratios are not much better in our medium and maximum-security units.

That’s why we are asking to add eight deputies and two sergeants to our jail staff. We also need two non-commissioned jail security employees to add to our staff that work our security systems, two more clerks to deal with inmate records, and another food service security deputy so the food service staff can focus on food prep and inmate management — all to keep up with our burgeoning jail population.

One of the biggest challenges we face at the jail is the growing number of inmates who have specific medical needs or need to take medication. Our Health Services Unit is doing more exams, first aid, and patient diagnosis than ever.

We need to be able to do medical screenings on inmates as they are booked into the jail, instead of playing catch-up.

To do that, we need to add eight nurses — and a nurse supervisor — to our booking unit to do medical screenings on every inmate going into the jail. This will also get our jail current with the National Committee on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC) standards.

Having a nurse do medical screenings eliminates the risk for deputies attempting to make medical analysis and decisions for inmates and helps protect us from potential liability down the line.

We also need to add two more jail deputies in our Health Services Unit to keep up with the growing population of that area, which can hold up to 84 inmates.

The strain of growing population has not just affected our jail staff. Our patrol deputies in north Ada County have to cover 226 square miles — and 1,300 miles of roads — in an area that has added homes over a large area.

Currently, we have one sergeant and five deputies that cover all that area. We want to add one more deputy to both north patrol teams to provide better and faster coverage, as that area continues to expand.

We need to add some other employees and resources to key areas in the ACSO, including:

* An additional Victim Witness Coordinator to keep up with the increase in – and complexity of — calls for service.

* A new Forensic Quality Manager for our crime lab so we don’t have to rely on the backlogged Idaho State Police crime lab to process evidence.

* Four new deputies to add to our court transports team, which is on track to move a record-high 20,000+ inmates this year between jail, courts, medical, and legal appointments all over the county.

* Two new technology systems application employees to help manage and support all 84 of our computer/software systems.

* Three new deputies to bolster our training staff, as we prepare to run our own, POST-approved patrol and jail deputy academies for new hires.

* An additional appropriation of $1.2 million to cover overtime for all ACSO deputies.

The Ada County Sheriff’s Office currently has 674 employees and an initial $67.1 million budget appropriation for 2019. Our new proposal, which also includes some infrastructure funds, sets our budget request at $72.7 million and would increase our total staff to just over 700 employees.

The Idaho Constitution requires the office of the sheriff to preserve the peace, arrest all who attempt or commit a public offense, prevent and suppress breaches of peace, take charge of and keep the county jail, and regulate traffic on all highways and roads.

We are always striving to do that to the best of our ability. We are also totally committed to fiscal responsibility and getting the absolute most out of every tax dollar. We wouldn’t be asking for such an increase in staffing unless it was totally necessary to help ensure the rapidly growing Ada County remains a safe place to live, work, and play.

Sheriff Steve Bartlett went over our budget request with the Ada County Board of Commissioners last week.

Go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wx3UsIOW2hU and advance the video to the 2:13 mark if you would like to see that presentation.

The Ada County Board of Commissioners will make their final budget decisions following deliberations, which are happening all week long. You can watch those live at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CbIOFbUfFOo

Star Police arrest 18-year-old Nampa man after finding almost a half-pound of marijuana  in his backpack.

Elias Bernal-Gutierrez is charged with a felony count of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver.

Officers began their investigation just before 8:30 p.m. Sunday after getting a call that several people were smoking marijuana and drinking alcohol near the Star River Walk Park.

When an officer arrived and walked up to a grey Honda passenger car parked nearby and looked inside, he saw a marijuana pipe, a glass bong, plastic baggies, and a leafy green substance in plain view. The officer could smell marijuana even though the windows were closed.

A moment later Bernal-Gutierrez and three other people walked towards the cars from the River Walk.

When the Star officer asked if any of the four owned the grey Honda, 18-year-old Wyatte Ash said it was his. Bernal-Gutierrez said he was a passenger in the car. The other two people said they drove to the park in a different car.

The officer talked with the pair briefly and then did a search of the car, where he found a small plastic bag with marijuana, several pipes with burnt residue, digital scales, baggies, various other items of drug paraphernalia, and a black backpack sealed with a small padlock.

Officers found the key to open up the backpack, which had several plastic bags totaling 207 grams of marijuana inside, a Ruger 9mm handgun, a magazine filled with 11 bullets, and $480 in cash.

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Officers determined that backpack belonged to Bernal-Gutierrez.

Officers then arrested Bernal-Gutierrez and took him to the Ada County Jail.

Officers also arrested Ash and charged him with misdemeanor counts of possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

Off-duty deputy arrested on DUI charge

An Ada County Sheriff’s deputy was immediately placed on administrative leave after being arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence and crashing into another car late Saturday night. 

Meridian Police arrested John Rynhart, 43, after responding to a crash at the intersection of Meridian Road and Chinden Boulevard . Rynhart was off duty and driving a personally-owned Honda Ridgeline when investigators say he turned south from Chinden onto Meridian Road and hit a Honda Civic stopped at the traffic light.  

 Rynhart failed field sobriety tests and failed to provide adequate breath samples, so a blood draw was performed to determine if he was under the influence of any substances and, if so, his level of impairment at the time of the crash. 

 A 16-year-old girl was driving the Civic with two juvenile passengers. No one involved in the crash reported any injuries. 

Rynhart was booked into the Ada County Jail on a charge of driving under the influence. He posted a $500 bond and was released. He is scheduled to appear in court on the misdemeanor charge on June 4. 

Ryhnart was hired by the Ada County Sheriff’s Office in October 2006. He has been a patrol deputy since that time. He will remain on administrative leave until the results of the toxicology report are available.