Archive | January, 2016

Anger Over FBI Ambush And Orchestrated Killing Near Burns Oregon

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

Ore. 1 killed 8 arrested

Top: LaVoy Finicum, killed. Arrested, right to left, top to bottom: Brian Cavalier, Ammon Bundy, Joseph O’Shaughnessy, Peter Santilli, Ryan Bundy, Ryan Payne, Shawna Cox, Jon Ritzheimer.

When the FBI released a video showing the killing of Robert La Voy Finicum, they thought they would show us him reaching twice for a gun in his pocket, but what it showed was, in fact, the cold-blooded killing of La Voy Finicum, extended arms, unarmed. And this is what now has convinced even some who were not so much in favor of the Oregon protesters, that the governmnt is killing people who want to exercise their rights under the First and Second Amendment.  Now more people are convinced that the FBI lied, first by infiltrating the protesters and posing as one of them, and then orchestrating an ambush to kill the primary protesters. A new protest is planned for this coming Monday, February 1st. Only the nearby town of Burns Oregon is still against the protesters.


Oregon Protest Leaders Arrested One Killed 1/22/16

Ounce the authorities seeking to end a nearly month-long protest at the Malheur Oregon wildlife refuge realized there was only one way to bring the drama to a close, arrest the leadership, away from the refuge to minimize the potential for violence, the their next move was a road block. The decision to carry out the arrests was set into motion when the leaders left the refuge Tuesday to attend a community meeting in the town of John Day. The incident took place some 45 miles north of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge on Highway 395. , ended with the arrest of brothers and occupation protest leaders Ammon and Ryan Bundy, and the shooting death of rancher LaVoy Finicum.

During a news conference Wednesday, federal and county law enforcement declined to discuss the circumstances that led to the traffic stop and shooting, which occurred at about 4:25 p.m. Pacific Time. The FBI earlier described the stop as an “enforcement action” done by federal agents and Oregon State Police in connection with the occupation. Harney County Sheriff David Ward told reporters that prior to the stop, the occupiers had ultimatums that he couldn’t meet.


“I’m disappointed that a traffic stop yesterday that was supposed to bring peaceful resolution to this, ended badly,” said Ward. The law enforcement official said the protesters — a total of nine people — were in two vehicles during the stop. The FBI and state police staked out a spot along the route to John Day to stop the caravan. At first, both vehicles complied with an order to pull over, but then the lead vehicle took off, the law enforcement official said. It didn’t get very far, hitting a snow bank. Finicum, the official said, jumped out of that vehicle “brandishing a firearm.” He was shot and killed. Ryan Bundy, 43, of Nevada, was also struck by gunfire. He was wounded in the arm, the official added, and was released Tuesday night from a local hospital where he’d been treated for the gunshot wound. The official did not know who fired the shot or shots that killed Finicum, 54, of Arizona. His death was also confirmed by his daughter. Finicum was a Mormon rancher with 11 children, 19 grandchildren and a wife of 23 years. He said he would rather die than be taken into custody as part of the occupation. The group had seized the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge on Jan. 2 in the wake of a protest in the nearby town of Burns against the imprisonment of two ranchers convicted of setting fires on government land. The occupation is also tied to a long-running dispute over how public land is used in the West.

One dead, while the two brothers Ammon, 40,  and Ryan Bundy, 43, sons of Clive Bundy were arrested. Three other occupiers were arrested during Tuesday’s incident, authorities said: Brian Cavalier, 44, of Bunkerville, Nevada; Shawna Cox (59) of Kanab, Utah; and Ryan Waylen Payne, 32, of Anaconda, Montana.

Lincoln Dinner Elko 2016

Two more — Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy, 45, of Cottonwood, Arizona, and Peter Santilli, 50, of Cincinnati — were arrested later in separate but related incidents, the FBI said. All face federal felony charges of conspiracy to impede federal officers from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats, authorities said. The charge carries a maximum sentence of six years in prison. The seven occupiers arrested in Oregon, including the Bundy brothers, were expected to appear in federal court in Portland later this past Wednesday.

“Peaceful people were going to meet with other Americans regarding the constitution and a routine traffic stop winds up with one of my friends dead and another one shot,” said Patrick, one of the people left at the refuge.


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Geri Wopschall Around the County

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

G-WopWhite Pine County Economic Diversification Council  

January 19

The is Richard Howe’s first meeting after replacing Mike Coster. Howe seems to have a good grasp on the position.

  Wayne Cameron was re-elected Chairman. Gary Cook is the new Vice Chairman.

  Gary Cook “I feel the rurals are being screwed. With out enough money, obviously we are set until 2017.  What we receive is only a drop in the bucket.”

    Gary Parea “Three commissioners want to keep the EDC office open.”

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White Pine County Tourism and Recreation Board

January 21

Public Comment:

  Mark Bassett- The railroad is planning an event on Labor Day weekend on the loneliest road. We would like tour and rec join in encouraging people to drive the loneliest road.

New Business:

#1.  Jackie Hansen was elected treasurer.

#2.  Changing Bill Payment Procedure

Other then payroll, bills need to be approved by the board before being paid. This procedure is recommended by Robert More, but he doesn’t object to changes. Changing procedures would allow the treasurer to pay bills prior to a meeting and the agenda backup would be available before the day of the meeting.

#3. Approval of Volunteer  Appreciation Dinner on April 9th.

Invitation only.


Old Business:

#1. Golf Course up date.

#2. Approval of minutes. Tabled until rules are defined as to if someone not in attendance of the meeting of the minutes can vote.

#3. Approved Financial Report

#4.  Approved paying bills

#5.  Correspondence – Thank you from Paster Robert Winder regarding Christmas Dinner.

#6.  Railroad Report: Ridership – 13,574 (3rd highest), visitors from 42 states and 6 countries.

Public Comment:

  Ernie Flangas – Answering a repeated question, What is the cost of Christmas decorations? The decorations are not paid for by Tourism and Recreation, but by an individual.

Geri Wop


Philosopher Camus wrote “Always go too far, because that’s where you will find the truth.”

“If you ever injected truth into politics you would have no politics.”

Will Rogers

EDC meeting

  The money received to bring new business to White Pine is approximately $45,000. This is plainly not enough to do the job. Why does the county want to hang on to it? Putting it in the private sector would save the county money.

  I have asked for a definition of purpose for the EDC. I am assuming it is to bring new business and jobs in to White Pine County.

Tourism and


  The agenda must be available 3 working in advance of a meeting, not all backup needs to be. I understand Bruce Setterstrom is wanting the list of bills to be paid in advance of the meeting. The board members should know what they are voting to spend money on. If the bills are paid and than approved could make it easier.

  The Volunteer Dinner is an important part of saying thank you. I understand the number of volunteers is dropping. Volunteering is one of the best way to know what the citizens need and want. Please get involved.

   Voting to accept minutes from a meeting you did not attend does not seem right, but the meetings are recorded. This is also a way for a board member to keep informed.

   The individual who provides the decorations, does much, much more  for the people of White Pine because he sees a need. There are so many people that do for others with no fan fair. I thank them. Not everyone gets paid for what they do.

G Wop

Coming Events:

Monday’s – Celebrate Recovery, 16 Shoshone Circle – 7pm (775-410-1341)

January 26 – Learning Bridge Open House , 8:30 – 10:30

January 30 – Rotary Fishing Derby, Cave Lake, 289-4689

February 5 – Northern Nevada Fresh Food 735 Ave N, 3:00

February 6 – Crab Crack, Elk’s Lodge, 5 pm.  293-5209 (sold out)

February 12-13 & 19-20 Winter Photo Shoot  289-2085

February 20 Bristelcone Birkebeiner. 9am

March 2-4 – Nevada State Bar Conference. Convention Center

March 4 – Fresh Food Distribution 735 Ave N, 3:00

March 4 – Art Bank Opens

March 19 – Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Banquet. Convention Center

March 19 – Turkey Vulture Stretch 5K

April 9 – Volunteer Appreciation Dinner-invitation Only. Convention Center 289-3720

April 19 – Native American Art – Art Bank

April 22 – 24 – Nevada Archeological Society. Convention Center

April 26 – 28 – Native American Conference. Convention Center 289-8877

May – 6 – PEO Art Auction

May 13 – NORC 1/2 & 1 Mile Shootouts SR 490

May 13 – Nevada Open Road Parade of cars

May 14 – NORC Car Show Broadbent Park

May 14 – Little League Pancake Breakfast.  7-11 am Broadbent Park

May 15 – NRCO Race Day!!

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Ely BLM Needs Public Input And Comments On Trails

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan


ELY – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Ely District, Caliente Field Office is asking the public to review and provide comment on the Lincoln County Partners Non-motorized Multipurpose Trails 2015 Preliminary Environmental Assessment (EA), a proposed multi-purpose, non-motorized trail system to be located near Caliente, Nev.  The 30-day public comment period concludes Tuesday, March 1, 2016.

The proposed trails system would enhance access to public lands by constructing new multipurpose hiking and mountain biking trails.  The trails would improve non-motorized recreational opportunities in Lincoln County.  Development of the new trails and trailheads would not reduce access to or conflict with current recreational opportunities in the area.  Additional information can be obtained in the preliminary EA, available online at

Interested individuals should address all written comments to the BLM Caliente Field Office, PO Box 237, Caliente, NV 89008, Attn: 2015 Trails Project or fax them to the office at (775) 726-8111.  Comments may also be submitted electronically at  Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time.  While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

For more information, contact Project Manager Jon Prescott at (775) 726-8144 or

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Wendover Library Last Events

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

Parents and Children gathered around for Story Time, and Fun Activities at the West Wendover Branch Library.  Join them every Friday at 3:30 p.m. for “Story Time”, and Crafty Stichin’ Club every Tuesday from 1 p.m. …until 7 p.m.( hang out for half hour or all day!).


January 15th Photo Kelly Eveleth


January 15th Photo Kelly Eveleth

January 15th Photo Kelly Eveleth

January 15th Photo Kelly Eveleth

Jan 22a

January 22nd  Photo Kelly Eveleth




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Is It Possible For Young Children To Misuse Opioids?

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

The_Painful_Truth_CoverBy Dr. Lynn R. Webster

Author’s note: “Emily” is a pseudonym, and she’s someone I know. I’ve changed just enough details of her story to protect her family’s privacy.

Four-year-old Emily had a rare form of cancer. She had received chemotherapy every week for about three months. She also had to bear frequent painful procedures. Emily’s mother, Sally, vicariously experienced some of the same pain, knowing that her daughter might not live.

For physicians, the challenges of treating children include being cognizant of the parents’ feelings and concerns as well. A child commonly reflects a parent’s perception of pain or anxiety.

The cancer was eating Emily’s bones like maggots eating dead tissue. The excruciating pain emanated from her spine and long bones. Due to the persistent pain, Emily was placed on OxyContin. But she had another type of pain that wasn’t helped by this medication. This pain had a sharp, piercing character — what we call lancinating — and its sudden onset would often last only a few minutes. During these episodes, Emily would scream. Sally asked if there was a way for the spikes of pain to be treated. So intravenous morphine was administered when Emily was at the hospital and cried with lancinating pain.


On a cold winter day, Emily was hospitalized for more chemotherapy. Emily asked the nurse for a morphine injection. Although still on her OxyContin, Emily had been asking for morphine with increasing frequency. It didn’t appear to the nurse that Emily was in more pain than usual at that moment, but she complied with Emily’s request, attaching the syringe to the IV port and beginning a slow injection.

“Push it fast,” Emily begged.

“Why?” the nurse asked.

“Because it makes me feel good.”

This was an unexpected response, and when I heard about it, it caught my attention. Emily certainly was experiencing physical pain, but is it possible she was asking for a particular experience — for a blunting of emotional pain as well? This type of desire is common in adults, who will sometimes use opioids to cope with their emotional struggles as well as to relieve pain.

Until I heard Emily’s story, I would have disbelieved that a child would seek such an effect. Now, I am not so sure.

Of one thing I am certain: Emily made her request in innocence and without guile. The four-year-old is not a “drug addict.” But her very naiveté reveals how opioids such as morphine may become a trap for a vulnerable person.

Opioids are indicated for relief of physical pain. Using them to mask emotional pain can lead to great harm. If a four-year-old child can have emotional pain that supersedes her physical pain, we can be certain this human need is not an anomaly.

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It may not be possible for newborns and children to be “addicted,” but we do not have to be an adult to develop a desire to feel good that could be harmful.

How can this insight help people in pain? By understanding that there can be a slippery slope when using these powerful medications. Relieving physical pain may be the reason to initiate opioid use but, if continued use is to relieve emotional suffering, it can lead to disaster. People must be cautious of this possible transgression.

How can this insight help physicians? By knowing that a subset of patients may initially derive benefit from an opioid but that using an opioid can evolve into treating symptoms other than pain. And, therefore, using opioids more judiciously. That means asking insightful questions, and monitoring patients’ use more closely, while the patient is taking opioids.


How can Emily’s story help policymakers and regulators? By knowing that, whatever laws or regulations that are implemented, if opioids are the only treatment for moderate to severe pain, they will be used for the wrong reasons. If an innocent dying child seeks blissful relief then it should be instructive that, to prevent this from occurring, there must be equally effective alternative therapies available and affordable. As part of our healthcare transformation, new effective and safe therapies must be a priority of the FDA, U.S. Congress, and the National Institutes of Health. Until then, physicians, patients, society and legislators will struggle with finding a balance of providing pain relief and preventing the misuse of opioids.

Dr. Lynn R. Webster, MD, is the Past President of the American Academy of Pain Medicine, Vice President of Scientific Affairs at PRA Health Sciences, and author of a book, The Painful Truth, and producer of a TV documentary by the same name. Visit him online at He lives in Salt Lake City.


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Last Week Wild Cats Basketball Review

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan


Varisty game WHS vs. Merit

Wildcat Varsity game against Merit Photo Credit Karen Shepherd

the JV game

By Keren Shepherd

Wendover High teams have had a busy basketball week this week, starting with the boys going against the Lions of the Intermountain Christian School on Wednesday the 20th.   The JV maintained a strong lead throughout the game and finished with a score of 69 – 43.    Jason Shepherd scored 19 points in the JV game.  The varsity continued on against the Lions with Dallan Murphy being the high scorer of the game with 21 points and Jose Carrillo following with 17 of his own.   

Dugway Game of January 22nd Photo Credit Karen Shepherd

Wildcat JV game against Dugway on January 22nd Photo Credit Karen Shepherd

The Ladycats faced Intermountain Christian the next day in Salt Lake, as well.   Lydia Delgadillo was the leading scorer with 14 points and Aurora Rodriguez contributed 12 points, leading to an easy win of 54 – 26.  Their regional standing is now at 4 – 3.   The JV, still a young team, lost by 4 points.

Wildcats ended the week with a game against the Dugway Mustangs, in Dugway, Utah.   The Cats easily beat the Mustangs back in December.    The JV boys once again came out ahead of the Mustangs with a final score of 52 – 18.  The Varsity boys had more of a challenge but broke away in the final quarter with a win of 69 – 50.

The Ladycats faced the Knights of Merit Academy on Tuesday the 26th and once again, came out as the victors with a final score of 65 – 15.   Aurora Rodriguez led the Ladycats with a high score of 14 points. The Boys Cats lost to the Merit back in December by 16.  Dallan Murphy was the leading scorer of that game with 16 points.   

The JV boys led the Knights in a fast paced and aggressive game.  Ultimately getting the win with a score of 64 – 49.    The Varsity trailed throughout most of the game but came back with a 1 point lead in the final minute. But the Knights pressed on for a win of 70 – 73.

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What It Will Take To Address Income Inequality

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

Lee Hamilton nov2010

By Lee H. Hamilton

When the history of this year’s presidential campaign is written, one of its more remarkable features will be that candidates of both parties feel it necessary to talk about income inequality. Surely that makes this a watershed moment.

The issue is hardly new. As historian and writer Jill Lepore pointed out last year, income inequality in the United States has been rising since the late 1960s. As she put it, “The evidence that income inequality in the United States has been growing for decades and is greater than in any other developed democracy is not much disputed.”

Lincoln Dinner Elko 2016

More notable is that it has become a defining issue of our day, with Republican candidates seizing on it just as avidly as Democrats — though with different views of its causes and solutions. Some reformist Republicans have argued for some time now for the right mix of public policies to give poor and middle-income Americans more opportunity without shifting power to the federal government. On the Democratic side, as expected, both Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton press for a firmer public stance to redress the problem. No one suggests there are easy solutions.

To be sure, there are politicians, especially on the right, who believe there’s not much room for public action. Market forces will sort it all out, they argue. In this telling, inequality has come about because of globalization and technological changes that are unstoppable and that on the whole have raised living standards. Eventually, they believe, the gap between the highest earners and the rest of us will diminish. Instead of fighting inequality, we should be protecting and expanding the rewards for skill, leadership and entrepreneurship.

This argument assumes that the very wealthy won’t act to tilt the field even more in their favor. Yet as the New York Times noted last month, they are doing just that. “With inequality at its highest levels in nearly a century,” the newspaper wrote, “the very richest Americans have financed a sophisticated and astonishingly effective apparatus for shielding their fortunes…. Operating largely out of public view… the wealthy have used their influence to steadily whittle away at the government’s ability to tax them.”


Yet some reform-minded conservatives agree with Democrats on at least one point, which is that government needs to act to achieve greater fairness and opportunity in the economy. The stresses we see in our political system today — free-floating public anger and distrust of government and large institutions — stem at least in part from the widespread perception that economic insecurity has become entrenched in our system and there’s very little ordinary people can do about it. If inequality continues to grow, the stress on the system will ratchet ever tighter.

No one is arguing for a straight-ahead equalization of economic resources, which would not just require extreme restrictions on personal freedom, but would almost certainly hamstring economic growth. Nor, however, should government make the problem worse — which is what some politicians’ call for further tax reductions on the richest would do.

There are some broad directions we should be moving to ensure a degree of fairness. Current trends are not inevitable if citizens are determined to reduce the influence and power of money on the system. We need to shift resources to education and workforce training, though that will take time to produce change. Encouraging technological change that boosts unskilled employment — rather than stripping it away — will matter. So will protecting the progressivity of the income tax, encouraging the well-to-do to follow the excellent examples of their peers who are sharing their wealth, focusing on trade deals that favor workers and not just the business community, and providing incentives for people of ordinary means to save and invest.


We need to promote policies that help all children advance, and discourage efforts to further concentrate wealth. These are incremental changes requiring limited government action.

A reduction in inequality is an essential ingredient in a healthy democracy. To let the gap between rich and ordinary Americans grow larger will allow political pressures to build in our economic and political systems. We should aim for a country where opportunities are more equal and the distribution of wealth and income is fairer.

Lee Hamilton is a Distinguished Scholar, Indiana University School of Global and International Studies; and a Professor of Practice, IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs. He was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for 34 years.

For information about our educational resources and programs, visit our website at “Like” us on Facebook at “Indiana University Center on Representative Government,” and share our postings with your friends.


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The 32nd National Cowboy Poetry Gathering

Posted on 31 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

2016ncpg_poster_art-Montileaux_Comes_BackThe 32nd National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada, celebrated what it means to be connected to earth, land and big sky country west of the Mississippi. Montana cowboy poet Wally McRae called it the “Cowpoke Woodstock,” the coming together of folks united in their passion for all things western. An annual pilgrimage for many, the Gathering remains both a reunion and a welcoming revelation for newcomers. While showcasing the premier poets, musicians, visual artists and gearmakers of the region, the Gathering also takes its stewardship responsibilities seriously with ranch arts education for young and old via workshops and special topic discussions, films, videos and panels that tackle important issues current in the rural West. And it all took place in an atmosphere of inclusiveness, common cause and joyful learning.



For 2016, the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering found inspiration in the flowing grasslands, vast open spaces and indigo skies of the Northern Plains. From the Rocky Mountains to the Dakotas, from the sandhills of Nebraska to the grasslands of Saskatchewan, this expansive land of prairie and woodlands is one of the top cattle producing regions in the world. It is famous for short summers and punishing winters, but also for hardy people, excellent cattle, and fine bucking horses and bronc riders. Cultural and environmental historian of the western plains, Dan Flores, gave the keynote address. His work takes a longue duree approach, seeking to account for both history and the present so that today’s westerners can more effectively make decisions that are best for the long-term health of the land. It’s the big picture from the land of big skies. The public joined them in Elko, as ranchers, poets, musicians and artists from the Northern Plains shared and celebrated this land of enveloping horizons and expansive hearts.


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Two California Men Arrested In Wendover For Kidnapping

Posted on 22 January 2016 by Howard Copelan

Andrew Ussery and Nathan Ferguson

Andrew Ussery and Nathan Ferguson

At 3:00 am Thursday morning, two men were arrested in West Wendover,  after police received a report that a third man had been beaten and kidnapped in Taylorsville, Utah, and were probably in the Wendover area. The victim had contacted family members via text message, telling them he had been “beaten up and kidnapped” and giving them his location and his kidnappers  vehicle description, which was passed on to officers.


West Wendover Police  Officers found their vehicle at the Pilot Travel Center, on the main boulevard, and started to interview the three men. They learned that they had traveled from California to Utah for work, but the job fell through.

“The job that they were looking for fell apart and there was some animosity towards the victim, who set up the job. It’s unclear exactly how he got his injuries, but it looks like they took out their aggression on him. We got at least two states involved, multiple jurisdictions and third-party information, so we’re trying to piece it all together.”said then Lt. Don Lininger, Thursday.


Nathan Ferguson, 26, and Andrew Ussery, 29, were accused of assaulting the victim, but police said the victim “stopped short” of accusing Ferguson and Ussery of kidnapping him. So while he was transported to a Salt Lake City hospital to be evaluated, Ferguson and Ussery were released from the police.


Then the West Wendover Police contacted officers from the Unified Police Department, who visited the victim in the hospital to learn more about the incident. So while the  victim didn’t speak in front of his assailants, he did confirm to the United Police Department that he was kidnapped. The UPD then gave West Wendover police enough information to substantiate the kidnapping charges for an arrest. Police located Ferguson and Ussery again and they were taken into custody without incident. Both were transferred to the Elko County Jail.

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Elko Woman Bury Husband In Concrete

Posted on 22 January 2016 by Howard Copelan


Pam Erwin, accused of murder of husband (Photo: Humboldt County Sheriff's Office)

Pam Erwin, accused of murder of husband James Erwin in 2003 (Photo: Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office)

RENO, Nev. — A 57-year-old Elko woman accused of stabbing her husband to death with a carving knife 12 years ago, has said that she and her boyfriend, James Melendez encase his body in concrete when they buried him in a shallow grave. Pam Erwin, was arrested January 5 on murder charges. She made an initial appearance in Humboldt County Justice Court in Winnemucca last week in the death of James Erwin. Her accomplice, James Alan Melendez, 52, of Lake Havasu City, Arizona was arrested Jan. 11. Still in a County Jail in Arizona, he is awaiting extradition to Nevada to face charges of being an accessory to murder and conspiracy to conceal or destroy evidence in the commission of a felony.

Lincoln Dinner Elko 2016

Pam Erwin waived her right to a preliminary hearing on Thursday, Jan.21,  and was bound over to district court on charges of second-degree murder and conspiracy to conceal evidence. She’s scheduled to enter her plea at an arraignment Feb. 2.

Humboldt County Sheriff’s Det. Chris Carter said Pam Erwin first acknowledged during questioning four months ago that she killed her husband at their home in Golconda about 170 miles northeast of Reno in September 2003 “by stabbing him twice in the chest with a kitchen knife described as about 6 to 8 inches, meat-carving type knife with a dark handle.”

She also allegedly acknowledged she placed Erwin’s body in the bed of a pickup and that Melendez “assisted her in disposing of the body so as to avoid law enforcement involvement in the death,” Carter wrote in a probable cause report filed Jan. 7. He said that in an earlier interview Pam Erwin “had also described to me the area where James Erwin’s body had been buried and it was that disclosure that directly led to the discovery of James Erwin’s remains.”


During a subsequent interview in Arizona, Carter said that Melendez confirmed “he was aware that Pamela Ann Erwin had killed her husband … and that he had helped bury the body.”

“Both Pamela Erwin and James Alan Melendez accurately disclosed details of the grave site, including, but not limited to, attempting to encase the body in concrete to make its discovery more difficult,” Carter wrote.

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Pam Erwin has been appointed a public defender, Matt Stermitz, who has declined to comment other than to confirm information in the court documents.

James Erwin was 50 when he disappeared. He lived in the Winnemucca area as well as Golconda and worked in the mining industry. His immediate family first reported him missing in December 2003. At the time, Melendez was a roommate living with the Erwins and their daughter, Chelsea Erwin, at their Golconda home, court documents show.

His disappearance was “deemed suspicious” at the time.


Humboldt County officers investigated the case off-and-on since then, then intensified their efforts last year after meeting with family members to discuss possible new leads in the case, Sheriff Mike Allen said.

Officials for the Washoe County Crime Lab in Reno recovered the remains in September near U.S. Interstate 80 southeast of Winnemucca — about 5 miles south of the Golconda home — and used DNA evidence to identify them as belonging to James Ewin, Assistant Humboldt County District Attorney Kevin Pasquale said.



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