Sept. 21, 2010 — Is it politics because Lassen County has no state senator because of the death of Dave Cox this summer, and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation decided after Tehama and Modoc counties said they didn’t want convicted killer Loren Herzog paroled in their counties, we got the lucky draw with no notice?
Is it ignorance of who, what and where we are located that led to this decision. One state official actually laughed at one of the reporter’s when he was told that we have a city. Another newspaper report referred to Lassen County as a remote northeastern county isolated from the rest of the state. We suppose that may be accurate in the sense a mountain range separates us from Sacramento and we are not part of the urban sprawl, but people do live here. We also are home to three prisons.
Maybe that is why corrections decided to release a man some refer to as one of the most notorious serial killers in the state of California to our beautiful Sierra Nevada high desert area.
It is the why that has stirred up the community? We really are unconcerned with the why. What we want to know is what is going to be done about it and whom can we appeal to be heard and get this madman out of our midst. We also want to know if the legislature and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger understand how much it will cost the already economically strapped state to house this murderer on state property. Our understanding, which is not really being confirmed or denied by anyone in the know, is that Herzog will be feed, clothed and hired on at High Desert State Prison because he would not be able to work in Lassen County.
The paper worked all week and overtime to bring you answers daily and post them to our Web site, lassennews.com. Herzog was scheduled to be released Friday, Sept. 17, furlough day for the state — meaning no one at the governor’s office, the department of corrections or any other state office was working the last day before the paper went to press. Convenience personified.
The bottom line is for now Herzog is living here, and we suggest that our readers keep writing, e-mailing and calling the governor at (916) 445-2841. After listening to all the prompts and staying on hold a while, the person answering the phone will tell you the governor can’t decide Herzog’s fate. We figure he may get tired of the calls and intervene. His e-mail is http://gov.ca.gov/interact.
Last, we ask everyone to take a deep breath and the local police and deputies for keeping us safe and working double duty. It’s no fault of theirs they have to also protect Herzog from Lassen County residents.
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