DUI suspected in head-on collision on Hwy 95

The driver of this Range Rover is suspected of being DUI when it collided head-on with a utility truck Monday night on Highway 95 in Bullhead City.

BULLHEAD CITY, ARIZ. — No one was seriously injured in a head-on collision tonight on Highway 95, in front of the Foam and Froth Car Wash. Bullhead City police officers at the scene of the accident said, it could have been much worse as they believe one of the drivers may have been under the influence of alcohol.
The accident was reported to Bullhead City police dispatchers shortly before 7:30 (MST). Only minutes earlier, motorists reported seeing a black Range Rover swerving all over the highway, and an attempt-to-locate bulletin was issued by dispatchers. Eyewitnesses to the accident say that the southbound Range Rover was travelling in excess of 45 miles an hour when it cross the center lane into northbound traffic. Oncoming motorists reportedly slowed and swerved to miss the wayward driver, however, the driver of a heavy duty utility truck, owned by River Valley Air Conditioning, could not move out of the way fast enough.
The collision took place in the northbound lanes with both vehicle sustaining extensive damage.

This River Valley Air Conditioning utility truck was northbound on Highway 95 Monday night when it slammed head-on into a Range Rover that cross the center lane. The driver was not seriously injured.

Police believe the deployment of airbags in both vehicles, along with the fact that both drivers were wearing their seatbelts as required by Arizona state law, contributed to their survival. The drivers were the only occupants inside their respective vehicles and they didn’t sustain any major injuries.
The driver of the Range Rover was detained and transported to the police station for a breathalyzer test.
Charges are pending the results of that test.

16″ Gas Main Ruptures near Laughlin

Clark County emergency crews respond to ruptured 16" gas main near Laughlin this morning.

LAUGHLIN, NEV. — No one was injured when construction crews accidentally ruptured a 16-inch gas main, southwest of the Big Bend of the Colorado River State Park this morning. Las Vegas Metro Police in Laughlin were dispatched to a report of an explosion about one-mile west of Needles Highway, roughly four miles north of the California state line, shortly after 11 a.m. (PST).
When officers arrived, they found the construction crew taking emergency measures to keep everyone and everything away from the escaping natural gas.
Crews with Southwest Gas responded to the scene to shut off service to the line and determine what repairs would be needed.
The dirt powerline road that leads to the construction site was closed to traffic.
“All emergency personnel and members of the construction crew are accounted for,” said Metro Lieutenant John Healy, commander of the Laughlin substation.
At this time it’s unknown when the repairs will be made to the gas main. The break reportedly occurred near a line spur that feeds some neighborhoods in Laughlin, although officials could not identify which customers would be effected.
We’ll have more on this story as it develops.

ASU buying motel for use as student housing in LHC

BULLHEAD CITY, ARIZ. — They’re not saying which property, but Arizona State University is in the process of purchasing a motel near their campus in Lake Havasu City for use as a student dormitory. The director of ASU-Lake Havasu made the announcement during today’s Tri-City Council meeting in Bullhead City.
Dr. David Young believes the acquisition will help attract more out-of-state students, who he says the college really needs in order to continue to operate. He told council members that the added dorm rooms will be a top priority in recruiting efforts by ASU, especially in southern California and in the mid-west.
“We depend on those out-of-state students,” Young said. “There’s just not enough students in this part of Arizona to sustain our college on their own.”
Since it’s opening in 2012, ASU-Lake Havasu, which is located on the former campus of what was Daytona Middle School, has had a contract with the owners of the Quality Inn and Suites, about a quarter-mile west of the campus, to serve as student housing. For the most part, the motel rooms have served the college well, but Young said, there have been some conflicts.
He spoke about the impacts the Spring Break season has on his student dorm rooms. He said, parents of students have visited their children during Spring Break, which usually takes up the entire month of March in Lake Havasu City. In a few rare instances, according to Young, the parents and students decide at that moment that they are leaving ASU. He also indicated it’s been difficult for some students to interact with non-student visitors who use the other motel rooms.
Despite the few problems regarding student housing, Young indicated the Lake Havasu Campus is continuing to excel. Approximately 150 students are now enrolled in the college and he expects that number to climb substantially once the out-of-state candidates know about the new, “on-campus” housing that will likely be available for the fall semester 2015.
ASU heavily recruits out of state students and uses it’s extremely small student-to-instructor ratio, currently 15-to-1, and its low out-of-state tuition to lure candidates.
“Our out-of-state tuition is lower than the in-state tuition in Michigan,” Young said. “It’s like that in many states throughout the Midwest.”
Young said, even when you add the cost of on-campus housing, the total investment for incoming students from out-of-state is still lower than in-state tuition almost anywhere else.

Shootout with BHC police sends one person to jail

BULLHEAD CITY, ARIZ. – A Bullhead City man is behind bars after a shootout with police last night at a residence in the Riviera neighborhood. Police were originally called to the 1800 block of Artesia for a report of a domestic dispute in progress at about 5:30 p.m.
When officers arrived at the scene, the victim told them that her ex-husband, Timothy James O’Brien, 55, had struck her with a shotgun. He had resorted to barricading himself inside the residence and refused repeated requests from officers to exit the mobile home. The police department’s Tactical Response Unit (SWAT) responded to the scene, as did a negotiating team, which continued to attempt to communicate with the suspect.
At some point during those negotiations, O’Brien reportedly fired a shotgun in the direction of the officers, prompting one of the officers to return fire. No one was hit during the exchange.
O’Brien was later taken into custody without further incident and booked into the Mohave County Jail in Kingman on charges of aggravated assault and disorderly conduct per domestic violence.
Because the shooting involved a Bullhead City police officer, the criminal investigation has been turned over to the Lake Havasu City Police Department.
The incident remains under investigation.

Coconino County Attorney’s Office Set to Prosecute BHCPD Sergeant

FLAGSTAFF, ARIZ. — The Coconino County Attorney’s Office has formally charged suspended Bullhead City Police Sergeant Jesse Hoag with one count of sexual assault. The charges stem from an incident last month involving a Mohave Community College student who attended a criminal justice class being taught by the 37-year old Bullhead City man. State prosecutors in Flagstaff are handling the case due to a conflict of interest involving their counterparts in Mohave County.
The case was approved for prosecution this morning and the Coconino County Attorney’s Office requested an arrest warrant for Hoag from a Mohave County Superior Court judge and got it. Hoag was arrested by officers with the Bullhead City Police Department in the 1900 block of Marina Blvd. shortly after the warrant was issued. Hoag was booked into the Mohave County Jail in Kingman without incident.
Hoag was placed on paid administrative leave on Oct. 3 shortly after his superiors were notified of the alleged sexual assault. Detectives with the Kingman Police Department conduct the investigation.
According to police reports, Hoag and the student traveled to Laughlin to have a few drinks and discuss preparations for testing that the student was undertaking in order to become a police officer. Afterward, she asked to be taken home and Hoag obliged. After crossing back into Arizona, Hoag allegedly pulled into a parking lot in Old Bullhead and the victim indicated she originally consented to engaging in sexual activity with Hoag, but quickly withdrew that consent. The 11-year police veteran reportedly threatened the victim, held her against her will and forced her to engage in sexual activity.
Detective say that after the assault was completed, Hoag agreed to take the victim home and reportedly apologized, saying he would turn himself into authorities.
Three weeks later, Hoag was arrested in Laughlin after another victim called police to say that she had been attacked by a Bullhead City police officer. The victim in the Nevada case managed to escape before any sexual intercourse took place.

BHCPD make an arrest in connection with shooting Tuesday night in the Riviera neighborhood

BULLHEAD CITY, ARIZ. – A shooting last night in the Riviera neighborhood sent two people to the hospital and their neighbor to jail. Police dispatchers started receiving numerous calls for shots being fired in the 2100 block of Santa Cruz Ave shortly before 8 p.m.
When police arrived, they found a male and a female both with gunshot wounds. Both were taken to Western Arizona Regional Medical Center. The male victim, who had been shot multiple times, was airlifted to Sunrise Medical Center in Las Vegas in critical condition.
While investigating the shooting, detectives discovered that the shooter was the couple’s neighbor, identified as William Joseph Capozzi, Jr., 38. He has been their next-door neighbor for several years. Officers made contact with him at his residence and questioned him about the shooting.
Capozzi was arrested without incident. He was booked into the Mohave County Jail in Kingman on one count each of attempted first-degree murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Police have not released details regarding a possible motive in the shooting.
The incident remains under investigation.

Both Tri-State area toddler deaths ruled homicides, Bullhead City man arrested for one, MCSO Still Investigating the other

BULLHEAD CITY, ARIZ. — The deaths of two Tri-State area toddlers last week have both been ruled homicides by the Clark County Coroner’s Office, and while deputies with the Mohave County Sheriff’s office continue their investigation into one of the deaths, Bullhead City police have made an arrest in connection with their investigation.
On Monday, Bullhead City police arrested David Jonathan Ramos, 23, on charges of second degree murder and child abuse. Investigators say that on Oct. 22, Ramos was playing with 15-month old Drayson Tese, his girlfriend’s child, when he threw the baby in the air and then dropped him.
At about 11 p.m., Ramos and his girlfriend took the baby to the Western Arizona Regional Medical Center emergency room. After evaluating the child, emergency room officials decided to send the child to Las Vegas. He was then airlifted to Sunrise Medical Center in critical condition. He succumbed to his injuries about two hours later.
On Friday, the Clark County Coroner’s office, which conducted the autopsy because the child passed away in Nevada, determined baby Drayson died as a result of blunt force trauma to his abdomen.
After further investigation and interviews, detectives concluded Ramos was responsible for the child’s death and took him into custody on Monday. He was booked into the Mohave County Jail in Kingman.
The baby’s mother, who was not home at the time of the incident, will not be charged with any crime. Another child, a 5-year old sibling, was sent to the child’s biological father as part of a consensual agreement between the mother and agents with the Arizona Department of Child Safety (DCS).
While police have made an arrest in connection with the Bullhead City toddler’s death, the investigation into the death of 15-month old, Fort Mohave toddler, Kade Kryska continues without an arrest at this time. As was the case with baby Drayson, Kade’s suspicious death was ruled a homicide as the child died as a result of blunt force trauma to the head.
Baby Kade was also airlifted to Sunrise Medical Center in Las Vegas and succumbed to his injuries less than 12 hours after Drayson died at the same hospital.
Kade had been flown to Las Vegas on the night of Oct. 21 at the behest of emergency room personnel at Valley View Medical Center in Ft. Mohave. The boy’s mother had taken the child to the emergency room when she returned home from work and discovered Kade was having difficulty breathing. After determining the baby had sustained severe head injuries, hospital administrators, in compliance with Arizona state law, called the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies spoke with the boy’s mother who said the child was left in the care of her boyfriend while she worked all day.
Investigators are now trying to determine what happened while the child was with the boyfriend, who is not the child’s biological father.

BHCPD Sergeant Charged in Laughlin with Attempted Sexual Assault

BHCPD Sgt. Jesse Hoag was booked into the Tucker Holding Facility Wednesday morning in Laughlin on charges of Attempted Sexual Assault

LAUGHLIN, NEV.—A sergeant with the Bullhead City Police Department has been charged with attempted sexual assault in connection with an incident earlier this week in the parking lot of a local casino. Sgt. Jesse Hoag is free on bail pending his next appearance in Laughlin Justice Court. Hoag is currently on paid administrative leave from his position in Bullhead City.
Las Vegas Metro police in Laughlin were called to the casino early Wednesday morning after a woman called to report the alleged attack. The victim told Metro officers that she was approached by Hoag at a bar inside the resort and the two engaged in casual conversation. At some point during their conversation, Hoag identified himself as a Bullhead City police officer.
As the evening wound down, the victim and suspect left the bar together and entered his vehicle where he allegedly attempted to sexually assault the victim. According to police reports, a brief struggle took place and the victim was able to escape from the vehicle. The victim went back into the casino and called Metro. Hoag reportedly left the scene prior to the arrival of officers but later contacted investigators and surrendered himself at the Laughlin substation.
Hoag was booked into the Tucker Holding Facility in Laughlin on a single count of Attempted Sexual Assault. He was released from custody the following day after posting bond.

Another Tri-State Area infant dies under suspicious circumstances

15-month old Kade Kryska passed away at a hospital in Las Vegas. His death is under investigation in Ft. Mohave.

FT. MOHAVE, ARIZ.—A second infant death investigation is underway in the Tri-State area. This time, it’s the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office that is looking into the death of a Fort Mohave baby boy, who died yesterday at a hospital in Las Vegas. 15-month old Kade Kryska succumbed to his injuries shortly after being taken off life support at Sunrise Medical Center.

The infant had been flown to Las Vegas Tuesday night after receiving initial treatment at Valley View Medical Center. The boy’s mother took him to the emergency room after realizing Kade was having difficulty breathing. Standard protocol required administrators at the hospital to notify the sheriff’s office of the situation.

Deputies questioned the mother, who told them that she had been at work all day and returned to find her son was not doing well. The boy had been in the care of the mother’s boyfriend, who is not the child’s father.

No arrests have been made. The investigation remains active pending the results of an autopsy, which will be performed by the Clark County coroner’s office since the child passed away in Nevada.

Kade’s death came only hours after a second Tri-State area infant died at the same hospital also under suspicious circumstances. Bullhead City police are conducting the investigation into that death, which involved a 1-year old girl.

Ft. Mohave man faces Manslaughter charges in Northern California

Fort Mohave man is jailed in California

FORT BRAGG, CALIF.—A Fort Mohave, Ariz. man was arraigned Wednesday morning on charges he killed a woman and seriously injured a baby Friday night in this northern California coastal city and police say it appears to be a random act of violence. Michael Bradford Bitney, 56, was formally charged with one count each of vehicular manslaughter and battery, as well as two counts of hit and run involving a fatality or serious injury.
Bitney is accused of ramming his white GMC pick-up truck into a motel Friday night, killing a 45-year old Lafayette woman and seriously injuring her 7-month old nephew. Fort Bragg police detectives say that Bitney had been staying in the motel room next to the victim. Evidence at the scene and eyewitness accounts show the Fort Mohave man was driving around the parking lot of the motel around 6 p.m. Friday night. Suddenly, and without warning, his pick-up jumped the curb and into the adjoining motel room.
The woman, whose body was located underneath the debris in the aftermath of the incident, died at the scene. Her infant nephew was airlifted to a children’s hospital in Oakland. His current condition is unknown at this time.
Bitney fled the scene, but was stopped by Mendocino County Sheriff’s deputies near the town of Inglenook, which is north of Fort Bragg, on Highway 1. He was arrested without incident and was booked into the Mendocino County Detention Center in Ukiah, where he remains in custody in lieu of $155,000 bail.
Detectives have not been able to establish a motive for the killing. A department spokesman said, there is no evidence to indicate Bitney even knew the victim.
In addition to the manslaughter, battery and hit and run charges, the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office has added additional felony charges because of a previous conviction in California. He served four years in a California penitentiary for a prior robbery conviction.