Lois Henry

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    LOIS HENRY: Key molestation case figure deserves a do-over

    By Lois Henry
    Saturday, Nov 22 2014 09:16 PM

    This coming January it will have been 28 years since Gerardo Gonzales made the mother of all plea deals. By copping to one felony count of 288(a) lewd acts with a child on Jan. 22, 1987, Gonzales wiped away more than 200 charges against himself and five other people, ending the most notorious of Kern County's 1980s molestation ring trials.

    His no-contest plea, along with a similar plea by a co-defendant, the late Rev. Will Thomas, also ended the ongoing "satanic" molestation investigation in which another 40 people had been named in Sheriff's reports as perpetrators and at least 21 children had been removed from parents who were never charged with anything.

    Gonzales' plea freed him from jail, where he'd been kept for nearly three...

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    BAKERSFIELD OBSERVED: A blog about life, media, politics & people

    EGGS: If you are of a certain age, you were raised that eating eggs would increase your risk of heart disease. But now, according to The New York Times, scientists are rethinking all that. Said The Times: “Clinical studies show that...

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    LOIS HENRY: Carrot or stick for groundwater management?

    California's groundwater hit the big time Sunday night, starring as the lead item in the "60 Minutes" television news program. Upshot of the piece: Cali's been in a prolonged drought and our groundwater is being tapped like never before....

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    LOIS HENRY: Looky here! An 'unlimited' supply of new water

    Emergency drought funding announced last spring by Gov. Jerry Brown may soon be making its way into local hands. Four Kern County agencies landed a combined $12 million, according to the State Department of Water Resources. They four have...

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    LOIS HENRY: Finally, progress on fireworks restrictions

    Those who love their stupidly dangerous illegal fireworks best pay attention. Come March, Kern County will likely impose much higher fines on those who repeatedly break the law. It will crack down on hosts where party guests light off...

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    LOIS HENRY: Fireworks set to go off at county meeting (sort of)

    If you're like me and feel fireworks have become a menace in this county, you'll want to listen in on the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday morning. Kern County Fire Chief Brian Marshall will be giving a report on illegal fireworks,...

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    LOIS HENRY: Judge justified in closing Oliver jury selection

    Portions of two high-profile criminal trials were closed to public view recently. That's a big deal. Our open judicial system is, after all, one of the primary things that sets us apart from truly crummy countries. (Well, that and...

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    LOIS HENRY: How mustangs and PTSD vets can 'gentle' each other

    I admit it's hard to understand how this works -- wild horses easing PTSD for combat veterans simply by their proximity. But for veterans who've lost hope and been lucky enough to stumble on equine therapy, it has worked. Just ask them....

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    LOIS HENRY: Theater may soon be able to flush again

    Earlier this year, Lucy Spohn was going about life as best she could following the tragic suicide of her husband, Jim Spohn. The historic Granada Theater on Kentucky Street, which they owned, was going through probate. She was working...


    LOIS HENRY: Healing veterans with a wet nose and a tail wag

    One of the cruelest legacies of war is that the very thing soldiers crave most -- home -- is something they can often never truly regain. I've heard veterans explain their feeling as war seeming more "normal" than home. How do you go to...

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    LOIS HENRY: A comparison to Bakersfield? Ah, the kiss of death

    Whoa, whoa, WHOA! I've gotta call time out when a political campaign in a totally different county tosses Bakersfield under the bus. Yeah, that's right, a candidate running for San Luis Obispo County supervisor has put out mailers urging...

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    LOIS HENRY: More intrigue in the (say what?) assessor's race

    I feel like this column should come with a diagram, a portable fan and a stiff drink. Sigh. After a week of looking into this particular subject, here's my conclusion: The closer you get to election day, the stinkier things get. And the...

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    LOIS HENRY: B-town's good, bad and ugly, real ugly

    Thought I'd catch you up with a few tidbits from the "notes" file. Ombudsman program First, a huge thank you and kudos to the nearly 20 people who responded to my call for volunteers for the Kern County Long Term Care Ombudsman program....

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