Crime Blotter



A judge has decided a landlord’s housing complex is in such bad condition that the best penalty is making him live there.

Sam Menlo, convicted of violating housing codes, will have to spend 60 days confined to his grossly neglected 350-unit apartment complex, Orange County Superior Court Judge Michael Hayes ruled after touring the property.

“The windows are broken, there’s human defecation throughout, narcotics paraphernalia on the floors, graffiti and mold, which made it difficult to breathe,” said John Poole, code enforcement manager for the city.

Menlo, who was already on probation over the complex, must wear an electronic tracking device to make sure he stays on the property, and has to upgrade one of the 15 buildings each month using licensed contractors.

And if the 60 days in his own apartment complex isn’t enough to convince the landlord to clean things up, the judge has another sentence up his sleeve in an even less hospitable environment: 18 days in jail.



It’s not the kind of thing a high school student expected to find after police with drug-sniffing dogs finished going over cars in the school parking lot: a bag of marijuana stuffed under her door handle.

Anderson police say the bag of pot belongs to them and was being used to excite the dogs before starting the routine search.

Somehow, it got left behind.

The young woman was not amused, and reported the contraband to school officials and her father — who is a detective in the Anderson Police Deparment. Officials are trying to figure out what went wrong.



Two radio disc jockeys are getting static for dressing up as prisoners and going door-to-door asking people to cut off their handcuffs.

Joseph Lopez and Graham Herbert from KYLD-FM could go to jail over the on-air stunt.

They say they didn’t mean to make trouble, and were just seeing how long it would take for someone to hacksaw them free.

Startled neighbors, however, called police and the DJs were arrested Aug. 30. San Mateo County District Attorney Jim Fox filed charges against the pair accusing them of falsely causing an emergency to be reported.

Lopez and Herbert face up to a year in jail and $1,000 in fines if convicted. Station Manager Joe Cunningham said he was surprised by the charges.

“We didn’t expect for the issue to cause such a major disturbance,” he said. “We’re looking into it and we intend to cooperate in every way.”



A three-judge appeals panel said a voodoo doll sent the right message to jurors in a murder trial.

The panel, ruling that the pin-pricked, blood-smeared doll was properly used as evidence, said it showed premeditation on the part of 74-year-old Ruth Floyd, who was convicted of killing her daughter-in-law, Kim Floyd.

Prosecutors say that before the younger woman was shotgunned to death, Ruth Floyd visited her son in jail to give him the paper doll, which had written on it, “Death to Kim Floyd.”

The defense argued the voodoo doll was irrelevant and prevented Ruth Floyd from getting a fair trial.

Crime Blotter is a weekly feature of The Associated Press contributed to this report.