Barry Vogel Sues Mendocino Major Crimes Task Force, the County of Mendocino, and Cities of Willits and Ukiah for Civil Rights Violations

Press Release
September 16, 2010

Contact Barry Vogel, Esq.
707 462 6541

A claim alleging multiple violations civil rights protected by the 4th Amendment to the United States Constitution was filed against the Mendocino Major Crimes Task Force, the County of Mendocino and the Cities of Willits and Ukiah on September 16, 201

Krissa Arnold-Klein, a 21-year-old Willits, California woman claims her right to be free from unreasonable searches was violated when she was violently thrown to the floor of her bedroom in her Willits home on March 18, 2010 by Mendocino Major Crimes Task Force Agent Peter Hoyle.  The surprise and violence caused Klein great stress from which she continues to suffer, in addition to the infliction of harm to her wrist where she had previous surgeries.

Hoyle was in the process of executing a search warrant at her home, which according to his report attached to the claim; he and Agent Raymond Hendry were at the wrong residence. Hoyle is assigned to the Task Force by the Ukiah Police Department and Deputy Sheriff Hendry is assigned to the Task Force by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office.

The claim, prepared by Klein’s attorneys Barry Vogel and Brina Latkin, states that the search warrant Hendry and Hoyle obtained failed to meet the requirement of multiple United States Supreme Court decisions interpreting the 4th amendment.  The claim includes portions of the Field Enforcement Operations Manual prepared by the California Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement, the State agency that supervises the Task Force.  Among the failures to follow the procedures, Hendry did not have his search warrant application reviewed and approved by the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office.  A review of the search warrants on file at the Mendocino County Superior Court Clerk’s office shows that 40% of the search warrants between January 1, 2010 and July 23, 2010 were not reviewed by the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office, as required.

The claim, which is the first step in resolving Klein’s case states that the Task Force Agents’ actions amounted to gross negligence, which appear to be compounded by intentional deceit.  In addition to asking for $350,000.00 is damages, she is asking for an oversight committee to see that other people in Mendocino County are not subject to future abuses of Constitutional protection by local law enforcement officers.   If the claim is not settled, Klein intends to take the matter to the United States District Court in San Francisco.


Is $350,000 enough money??? Why not go for a million?

Hoyle’s name seems to turn up often in these kinds of stories.