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Napa Chalk Suspect's Case Dismissed by DA

Amy Larson, arrested Sept. 11 after chalking "9/11 Truth" and "WTC Bldg 7" slogans on the First Street Bridge in Napa, will not be prosecuted for vandalism, according to the Napa County District Attorney's Office.

It looks as if Amy Larson will not be returning to a Napa courtroom to defend herself against charges of vandalism stemming from her arrest Sept. 11 after chalking slogans on the First Street Bridge.

The case against Larson has been dismissed, according to the Napa County District Attorney's Office.

Larson's arrest on suspicion of felony vandalism touched off a firestorm of comment on Napa Valley Patch, Alex Jones's national radio and video programs and other media.

Larson, who was unavailable for comment Friday, had insisted she was arrested because she wouldn't fully identify herself to police who questioned her after she was reported to be writing on the bridge.

While the district attorney's office will not pursue the case, which had been reduced to a misdemeanor by the time Larson was arraigned Wednesday, Napa Police Capt. Jeff Troendly said police still believe she is the person responsible for widespread chalk writing in Napa, which had to be cleaned up at city expense.

Although the DA's office has declined to prosecute, city officials could still pursue a civil legal action against Larson to recover the costs of the cleanup.

Troendly warned that those who vandalize property, regardless of their medium or its message, "may be held accountable" by authorities.

"We don't want people doing this," he said.

For more about this story, please see

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  • Chalk Suspect to be Arraigned Today in Napa (42 comments)
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  • Napa Letter: Newspaper Wrong About Chalk Suspect (7 comments)

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JK Yeager October 01, 2012 at 09:34 PM
No, I'm JK. I was referring I one understanding their constitutional rights, which should be the laws governing the police, which the NPD clearly does not understand. From what I have heard, when Amy was approached by the police the first time they said what she was doing was acceptable. If the police officer would have said no, Amy might have asked the officer to show her the graffiti law and she might have stopped. Instead, they say it is alright and then come down on her and detain her for more than a day... for not showing ID or chalk or whatever. Call it defacement by graffiti or whatever... We are still talking about CHALK ON A SIDEWALK.
A.R. October 02, 2012 at 01:17 AM
No, I am not a cop! lol Although I'm not sure why Orchid Lady would say that I am definitely not a cop. She'd have no idea! She is obviously not one either! If her "friend" told her to "make them work for it", he's not much of a cop either! Wow! I, personally have nothing to hide from the police. If this woman had given the information they asked for, they would have done a FI card on her (Orchid Lady, why don't you ask your friend what that is). That's it. End of story! Yes, she is a moron and no, I don't have that much time on my hands JK, maybe you should look back because I did not comment on everything! You, however, have been keeping up on this post since Friday, so I'm not sure you wanna go there! I spent a whole hour! Unless any one of you were there to watch this incident take place, you have no idea what happened. I know a lot of liars and they will say just about anything to make themselves look better! And Orchid Lady, you have no idea what the police officers in this town deal with! None at all! If you did, you probably wouldn't be commenting here at all and I can guarantee there are certain parts of town that you would not go into, especially after dark!
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 06:42 AM
A.R. states: personally have nothing to hide from the police. If this woman had given the information they asked for, they would have done.What? Unless any one of you were there to watch this incident take place, you have no idea what happened. I know a lot of liars and they will say just about anything to make themselves look better! Well I have a first hand story on your subject. I was in Kennedy Park where our family had gathered to give my Aunt good-bye wishes as she was dieing of Cancer and did not have the strength to go out on her own to see everyone. My brother and I were cooking Hamburgers & Hot Dogs on the grill and drinking a beer. Well before you could even turn around there were three undercover cops in an unmarked van stopped next to us. Now I was born in this town and for many years and have enjoyed many a Bar-B-Que etc. there. Now A.R. try to keep up now, I inquired as to what was going on (as I had been to the park many times with people drinking with out a problem). There response (with the attitude, we are the cops, don't question us) poor your beer out, or you will be cited! So my brother and I complied with the officers request, and pored our beer out.
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 06:45 AM
The officers then went to the end of the road and turned around and started back. Now forgive me but NOT BEING LIKE A.R. I was going to enquirer of the officers why there was a KEG of BEER about 30 yards off the road, where people were jumping on a Trampoline (in plane sight) and no appearance by the cops to the KEG Party. Then they proceeded down the road and stopped by the group next to ours, they were out conversing with them (still nothing pored out from that group). Still keeping up A.R., Now I had it in my mind that I was going to find out why the cops did not have anyone else poor out their drinks? As they approached I stepped out to the edge of the road and held up my hand in a stopping motion. I went to the drivers window and asked to get his name and badge number, (A.R. is going to say "now what did you do that for? Don't mess with the cops.") There response was "What for?" I told him that I was going to find out why my brother and I were being going to be arrested if we didn't poor our beer out, and I see that you have not told anyone else to do that, so I was going to find out why. Well the next response was from the cop and it was "LET ME SEE SOME IDENTIFICATION" ( again with the attitude that we are the cops here and you have no right to question us.) I then replied "are you charging me with something? Cops answer "NO" I just want to see some I.D.! Then I asked "if I was under arrest" the Cops answer was "No, I just want to see some I.D."
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 06:52 AM
I told him to forget about it I will find out on my own. I turned around and was thrown to the ground knocking my glasses off and skinned both knees. After I was cuffed, the cops took my wallet out of my pocket to get my I.D. (now that was a violation of my Civil Rights.) What the NPD did not know was that my cousins husband was the Sheriff of Alpine County and he got the cops to give me my I.D. back. I then went to the Police station to file a report, I was told by the Sargent that "Everyone needs a permit that will allow them to drink in the Park" well I found out that the group next to ours was an "off duty cop" and according to the Sargent he did not have a permit either. So looking back the first thing the cops SHOULD HAVE SAID WAS Do you have a permit for alcohol consumption in the Park? "Instead of poor your beer out or you will be cited." Now the cops wonder why most people have a distrust of the NPD, they want to run things their way and that means they expect everyone to kiss there feet and say Mother My I. And don't try to solve a problem by jumping to conclusions then going off the deep end. Because that would be hard to reverse a decision after it was to late and make you (the cop) look weak. .Well I got a lawyer and took the cops and the city to court. They turned it over to a Mediator. Well it seems every cop had the same (LIE) and said 'that I was running to get another beer and they were trying to stop me'!!!
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 06:54 AM
So A.D. are you starting to get the picture of how the NPD works? The Mediator ruled in my favor and the City had 90 days to accept it or not. I also had 90 days to except or not, if I wanted to take it to Federal Court. Which as I understand would have cost the city around $500,000.00. City and I settled on $50,000.00 I had to sign a paper that I would not tell how much I received from the settlement. Well the amount ended up in the Napa Sentential, so much for my not saying anything. Now A.D. this happened to me (in person, not second hand or hearsay) I learned that the Officers involved were given time on the beach (without pay). Now you know why I don't trust most cops, the one kept giving me sh*t every time I ran across him. Now A.D. I'm not done yet. The same officer that was involved in this mess also kept jumping on my step-son about me telling him I was an asshole etc. etc.
A.R. October 02, 2012 at 07:01 AM
Wow, that was truly a tough one to keep up with. Especially since I somehow read something that you previously wrote that said they twisted your arms back, requiring you to have 2 surgeries. You then said that you took them to court and were awarded $50,000, to which you cashed the check. My comment to that was going to be, boy you should have gotten a better attorney because you got screwed! Either that or, the city settled with you because it was cheaper in the long run...but, since your oh so truthful story changed, even through all of the misspellings, poor grammar and improper use of the English language, I'd like to ask, which civil right was it that they violated?? Also, I wouldn't say that "most" people mistrust NPD. That might just be the group of law abiding citizens that you hang around.
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 07:02 AM
Now save the best for last. The officer that was giving me and my family all the sh*t was now in front of a truck driven by one of his friends. The cops had a search warrant for the women's apartment, that they held for 10 DAYS my step-son or the driver did not live at the apartment. But they held that warrant and waited for my son's friend to spend the night there. They were pre-staged at the Economy Market half a block away. When my step-son pulled up to the apartment to pick up his friend, they spotted the undercover car sitting on the Imola property. They ran to the truck and got in. Now A.R. please pay attention again. The cops came down Imola Ave. and instead of pulling behind the truck, to block them in, they pulled alongside of them. Now one of Napa's finest was on the front page of NVR and was quoted as saying that the mirror on the truck hit his hand and cut it (ANOTHER LIE) his hand was cut because he hit the drivers window with his own hand gun, the window broke and he dropped his gun into the truck. Next he shouts "GUN" and then two officers open fire on the windshield of the truck. The officer that shot and KILLED my step-son was the same officer that had been dogging me and my family, the same one that I had a run in at Kennedy Park.
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 07:06 AM
Now after all of that, the cops were found within there rights to do the killing. Now you want to know WHY WE NEED CIVILIAN OVERSIGHT ON THE NAPA P.D.? Wake up people we need someone to start policing the police. If the cops don't like it, let them find another line of work. My step-son has a 4 year old daughter and she has been compensated for the last 14 years (tax payers again). So yes A.D. you wonder why I can't trust a cop, or want to go by their rules. The cops in Napa are the Judge, Jury, and Executioners of and for the City!!! And A.R. now you can deal with the other side, and STOP TAKING THE COPS WORD OVER ANY ONE ELSE'S.
A.R. October 02, 2012 at 07:23 AM
Hmmm, your step-son? Why did he have your last name? I know very well about that incident actually. If your son's daughter is being compensated, is it by the city? Or is it by Social Security? Social Security is compensation for a parent dying. Has nothing to do with how. Of course you are going to say the cops were at fault in that situation. That's what most people in your situation would do. It's fairly natural. Especially when you come from a long line of people who have had many dealings with the police. I heard this story a bit differently however. Now, let me guess! You did not take it to federal court because it wasn't a case for federal court? Am I right? Or, your attorney advised against it? You didn't say why not. Also, which one happened? They twisted your arms back so you had "have two operations", or, they made you scrape your knees and drop your glasses? Just trying to be clear here. Oh, and if you want to know how I know a lot about these things, it's because I've lived here a very long time...maybe not as long as you. You're quite a bit older than I am. Napa is a very small town.
Unfiltered Steve Simoneau October 02, 2012 at 07:33 AM
This person A.R. has minimum credibility since they are not willing to use a name in this forum, only random initials that could stand for anything. A heckler, nothing more.
A.R. October 02, 2012 at 07:42 AM
Yep, you're right. You guys all have so much credibility, just because you use your name. lol
shane October 02, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Tell/show the Police who you are, when they are making a "Lawful Contact". Amy Larson, get out of my hometown. Go home, 29yrold child. The rest of these crazy outlandish posts are disturbing say the least.
Penny October 02, 2012 at 02:53 PM
She has gotten alot more wave link then deserved.
JK Yeager October 02, 2012 at 02:57 PM
Posts like this are disturbing. It's one thing for someone like AR to suggest that she was wrong and should be held accountable. While several others and myself have a problem with that particular way of thinking, it is more or less grounded and can be defended. Posts like yours, Shane, are very much disturbing because it amounts to name calling because of her age and a call for her to leave town. You don't deserve this reply and I hope you act like an adult before thinking of posting again.
Unfiltered Steve Simoneau October 02, 2012 at 03:01 PM
So I can assume that if you recognized one or more of us in public during a discussion of an article on Patch that you would introduce yourself by name and "A.R." and join in the conversation? I get recognized occasionally and discuss my ideas and opinions in publc without hesitation, and if a person can change my mind about something in a rational manner I'll admit it. Now THAT'S credibility.
Unfiltered Steve Simoneau October 02, 2012 at 03:04 PM
What's really disturbing is that you find them disturbing and keep reading them! Do you continue to kick the curb after stubbing your toe?
JK Yeager October 02, 2012 at 03:16 PM
Good point Steve. I guess it's time to unsubscribe.
Moral Conflict October 02, 2012 at 05:12 PM
It is just CHALK!!!!! WHO CARES??? This is so stupid, the whole situation, that it made news, that people are even commenting, its all pathetic.
Jeffrey Wright October 02, 2012 at 05:21 PM
@ JK Yeager, I find it rather odd that that the only comments you have on the Patch are to do with this article ? So go ahead and unsubscribe ... One less troll !!
Jeffrey Wright October 02, 2012 at 05:23 PM
Then why are you commenting ?
Belle (Orchid Lady) October 02, 2012 at 06:38 PM
A.R.- You're right, I'm not a police officer, but my friend is (and a good one too), and before that, was a Fed. The reason it was said (make them work for it) is very simple. Any officer knows that if they have the right to search they don't have to ask your permission, they can easily get a warrant if it's a valid search request. I have no disdain for police officers, and I have a lot of respect for them and the work they do. However, if I was driving and stopped for 'speeding', and the officer asked to search my vehicle, I would be offended first of all, and second of all I have nothing to hide, but coming from a military family, I value my rights. My only problem is with how this case was handled, and I have said it in previous posts. BOTH Amy and the officers could have handled this better, but to charge her with a felony was a retaliatory charge, with no basis in reality, because they would be required to prove she did the 'other chalking' as well. I feel they abused their power on this case. That doesn't make me anti-police, it makes me a person who thinks rationally and comes to a conclusion of my own. As for the places I wouldn't walk at night? I grew up up in the Laurel St. area. There isn't anywhere in Napa I wouldn't go after dark, except hiking. Mountain lions scare me more than cholos or tweekers.
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 08:17 PM
1) A.R. asked: Hmmm, your step-son? Why did he have your last name? Because I married his mother when he was 5 yrs old. when he started school he wanted to use my last name because his brothers were using it. I helped coach him in baseball and football. I did not adopt him. If you care to go the the cemetery and read his head stone it says "Raymond Edward Stoddard (McLean)." 2) If your son's daughter is being compensated, is it by the city? Or is it by Social Security? Social Security is compensation for a parent dying. Has nothing to do with how. Of course you are going to say the cops were at fault in that situation. As with most litigation you can't disclose what the outcome of a case is, that is why the City carries Insurance! So we only pay tax on the premiums and what ever they want to raise, due to claims I believe the cops were at fault for: a) Why did they hold the Search Warrant for 10 DAYS. The Search Warrant was for Dola and her apartment!! Not for cars in the drive way. b) If there intent was to capture Wille and not Dola, why did they wait for 10 Days! Do you think that Dola (arrested for selling drugs to an undercover officer) was trying to get her sentence reduced or dropped , if she called to tell the cops Willy was at her house? If they got a warrant for Dola's apartment! Why did they hold it for 10 DAYS? When there intent was to get Willy all along? Why did the Judge sign a Warrant if it was not going to be used right away, on Dola's apartment?
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 08:30 PM
c) Why didn't the cops pull behind the truck to block it in? d) Why did the cops lie about the injury to one officers hand? Oh I forgot cops don't lie! (See above) e) Why did they have to shoot for the head? They had bullets flying up and down Imola ave. Not one thought about innocent people in the area. Why do you watch other cops follow someone with a gun, until they run out of gas or crash? Without shooting the person to death? Napa, shoot first, ask questions later (or lie and get your stories straight later.)
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 08:44 PM
A.D states: Especially when you come from a long line of people who have had many dealings with the police. I heard this story a bit differently however. a) So what does that mean? If your last name is Stoddard, shoot on site? How dare you try to bring my family name into this discussion. b) Of course you are going to believe the police version every time! That is why cops don't lie, so I'm sure that the way you heard the story was the cover up for the cops side. A.D. states: Now, let me guess! You did not take it to federal court because it wasn't a case for federal court? Am I right? Or, your attorney advised against it? You didn't say why not. Also, which one happened? I did not take it to Federal Court because I didn't have the money to put up for a retainer to go to Federal Court. I knew that it would have been a drawn out process that could last a long time. So I opted for the $50,000. The $500,000 was an estimate on the low end that cases like mine have been awarded.
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 08:58 PM
A.D. states (again): They twisted your arms back so you had "have two operations", or, they made you scrape your knees and drop your glasses? Just trying to be clear here Answer: All the above, they cranked my arms clear above my shoulder blades (pictures of handcuff marks on file at Napa PD) and yes I had both shoulders operated on. They also have pictures of my knees at NPD. A.D. also states: Oh, and if you want to know how I know a lot about these things, it's because I've lived here a very long time...maybe not as long as you. You're quite a bit older than I am. Napa is a very small town. Answer: Oh give me a break don't you know that everyone has an opinion, you choose to believe the cops (No matter what). I just want the people to know that there is another side to some of the stories. Cops do NOT ALWAYS tell the TRUTH!! That is the point I was trying to get across. And alas, I don't know your age and don't care to. I just want you to open your eyes and admit that there MIGHT be a thread of truth on the other side....
vocal-de-local October 02, 2012 at 09:19 PM
Ernie, we must be careful to not put all cops in the "cops lie" basket. It's the equivalent of saying all black people steal or all white people are greedy. That said, I can identify somewhat with what happened to you at the park except it happened to my family on a 4th of July beach on Tahoe. Yes, we had gone to restaurant and we had been drinking margaritas. Yes my son was tipsy. He was later beaten up by a guy who was trying to prove his masculinity in front of a group of his friends, after accusing my son of flirting with his girlfriend. This guy just wanted to beat someone up, bottom line. People on the beach called law enforcement because my son was injured. The group ran off. Officers removed my son off the beach and interrogated him, treating him not like the victim but like someone who had committed a crime. He had done nothing wrong, which they later discovered. He was in the wrong place at the wrong time and there was miscommunication between the officers and the custodial offices on a busy 4th of July. He refused to give them his name and they assaulted and tasered him. His skin was black from burns. They must have shot the taser at very close range. This was retaliatory behavior, not use of diplomacy with a person who had been first beat up and was not in a right state of mind at the moment. Anyway, I can identify with your frustration but still, I've met some fantastic salt of the earth cops before. They are not all the same. Keep that in mind.
Belle (Orchid Lady) October 02, 2012 at 09:58 PM
Ernie, don't let someone get you upset. Also you don't need to explain yourself and your very painful experiences, to someone who will never understand the point you are making. Some folks just don't posses critical thinking skills, and it's easier for them to believe what they 'have been told' than it is for them to see things from another perspective.
Belle (Orchid Lady) October 02, 2012 at 10:03 PM
I agree with Vocal. Not everybody lies, I know some amazing people who happened to become police officers, and I know some real jerks who did also. It depends on lots of things. I can probably answer lots of reasons for the police to do what they did, but in the end, it doesn't always sit well in the gut.
Ernie Stoddard October 02, 2012 at 11:17 PM
I'm not trying to put ALL cops in the lie basket. But even one bad apple can spoil the barrel. Because I have had first hand knowledge that cops lie (like they did to me, and my step-son). I have also herd of the "Thin Blue Line" good cops do not rat on bad cops, they just help them cover up the bad cop mistakes. When you join the force, you are assigned a (FTO) Field Training Officer, and you will have your every move and thought overlooked. Now if the FTO feels that you are trying to go against the system, you can and most likely will be terminated.. So all I'm saying that the good cops are forced to cover up for the bad cops, when they should be able to speak up against the wrong doers. And of coarse they won't because they want to keep their jobs.

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