Tag Archives: Bishop Police Department

No Criminal Charges Filed Against Bishop Elementary Teacher

District Attorney Tom Hardy announced today that, having carefully evaluated the information from the Bishop Police Department’s supplemental investigation, no criminal charges will be filed against Eugenio Solorio.


Mr. Solorio was arrested by the Bishop Police Department on April 22, 2019 on charges relating to committing lewd acts with a minor.  At that time, the District Attorney’s office declined to file charges and referred the case for further investigation.  That investigation has been completed, and it is still the judgment of the District Attorney that there is not sufficient evidence to file criminal charges.


“A prosecutor has both a legal and ethical obligation to file criminal charges only if he or she believes, after review of the legally admissible evidence, including reasonably foreseeable defenses, that a reasonable and objective jury would find a suspect guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.  That is a high burden of proof that we take very seriously, and which we do not believe can be met at this time.  If new or additional information becomes available the case can be reconsidered, but I understand that the Bishop PD has concluded its active investigation,” said Hardy.  Even though the active investigation has been concluded, anyone with any information regarding the case is encouraged to contact the Bishop Police Department.


The legal standard for an arrest is much different than that for a conviction.  The arrest in this case was made based on probable cause after a forensic interview was conducted by trained law enforcement officials.   Additionally, a search warrant based on this probable cause was subsequently issued by a judge and served by the Bishop Police Department.  The Bishop PD also conducted substantial follow-up investigation.


The public is reminded that a criminal investigation does not attempt to address issues of potential civil liability, nor administrative or policy violations, all of which are subject to lower standards of proof.


Suspect Arrested on Weapons Charges

On Tuesday evening, the Bishop Police Department set up a perimeter between Vons, Kmart, and the Vagabond Motel, after a foot pursuit of a wanted subject.

The following day, the subject who fled from the police was found and arrested. Ryan ward, age 29 was detained at 205 Collins Rd, in Bishop on weapons charges.

Ward, who was on parole was charged with felon possession of a firearm, carrying a loaded firearm, possession of an assault weapon, and violation of parole. The following list of charges are all felonies.

Previously, Ryan Ward had been charged with Second Degree Robbery and Second Degree Commercial burglary for robbing the Bank of America in Mammoth Lakes in 2013. Ward was sentenced to three years in prison for the offense.



By Seth Conners

The Inyo County Sheriff’s Office would like to remind residents and business owners of Inyo County to please sign up for CodeRED. This is especially important if you have changed your phone number or address in the past year, or if you use a cellular phone as your primary number.

CodeRED is a high-speed notification solution that quickly delivers emergency messages to targeted areas or the entire county. Because the notifications are geographically based, a street address is required to ensure emergency notification calls are received by the proper individuals in a given situation.

Signing up for CodeRED is simple. Either click on the CodeRED link on the Sheriff’s webpage, www.inyosheriff.org , or you can stop by any of their substations and pick up an enrollment form (between the hours of 8:00am and 5:00pm).

Small Fire Puts East Bishop On Alert

Bishop Fire Department makes quick work of fire in East Bishop

July 15th
by Seth Conners

Thursday afternoon, in Bishop, a small brush fire broke out shortly after 1 o’clock.  It was located between the airport and the canal just North of Line Street.  As a result, Line Street was closed for about an hour.


No injuries were reported as a result of the fire.  Cal-Fire, Bishop Fire Department, and The Inyo National Forest Service responded to the fire which has been 100% contained at just over half an acre.


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2 Found dead in Bishop home

July 8th
by Seth Conners

The Bishop Police Department responded to the 400 block of Hammond Street on Tuesday July 5th regarding two deceased people found inside their residence.  The preliminary investigation seemed to show a strained relationship between husband and wife that,sadly, ended in tragedy.
The decedents have now been identified as Dan and Dee Dean, a married couple who resided in Bishop for many years.  The couple was experiencing marital problems with divorce papers having been recently served.
The investigation revealed that Mr. Dean intentionally shot Mrs. Dean and then took his own life.  This was a planned event with no evidence of a protracted struggle.  Bishop Police Department urges the public to continue the kind and supportive thoughts to help those affected by this tragedy.

If anyone has information about the incident please call Bishop PD at 1 760 873 5866.


Bishop Police Department hires a new Lieutenant

Bishop PD names Ellsworth Lieutenant

Submitted by Jessica Scida, Bishop Police Department
April 8, 2016

The Bishop Police Department recently held an open and competitive recruitment for the open position of Police Lieutenant. Applications were received from candidates statewide. After a lengthy process, Sergeant Joshua Ellsworth with the Beaumont Police Department was selected for the position.

Lieutenant Ellsworth, a veteran of the United States Army Reserve’s, began his career with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office in 1996. While there, Ellsworth worked patrol out of the Victorville area and as a motor officer in Yucaipa. Ellsworth then spent 7 years working for the Beaumont Police Department as a patrol officer before promoting through the ranks to a Corporal, and then Sergeant, the rank he held prior to accepting the Lieutenant’s position in Bishop.

Lieutenant Ellsworth, his wife Stephanie and their 2 young children have now relocated to the Bishop area.


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Bishop PD arrests 2

Bishop Police Make Arrests

April 1, 2016
submitted by Jessica Scida, Public Information Officer

On Wednesday, March 30, 2016 at approximately 6:30 PM units from the Bishop Police Department conducted a probation search at a residence located in the 300 block of Clark Street.

At the residence, Bishop Police Officers made contact with Alberto Verdugo Flores, a 32 year old Bishop resident. During search of the residence, officers located a large amount of stolen property connected to a series of burglaries in the Bishop area. As a result of the investigation, Flores was placed under arrest and transported to the Inyo County Jail on the following charges: Penal Code Section 496(a) – Possession of Stolen Property over $900.00; Penal Code Section 1203.2 – Violation of Probation; and Health and Safety Code Section 11377(a) – Possession of a Controlled Substance.

Bishop Police Officers also contacted Kevin Douglas Elliott, a 26 year old Big Pine resident inside the house. Elliott was found to be in possession of approximately a half ounce of methamphetamine. Elliott was placed under arrest and transported to the Inyo County Jail on the following charges: Health and Safety Code Section 11378 – Possession of a Controlled Substance for Sales; Health and Safety Code Section 11364 – Possession of Controlled Substance Paraphernalia.

The investigation is continuing at this time, and anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact the Bishop Police Department at (760) 873-5866.

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City of Bishop releases information from PD Investigation

Bishop releases findings of the Police Department Investigation

by Arnie Palu
March 10, 2016

The City of Bishop has released details from the investigation of the Police Department following a “Letter of no confidence in Bishop Police Chief Chris Carter”  signed by 7 members of the department.  The letter was delivered to local media and the Bishop City Council on September 16, 2015.  The letter was released while Carter was on a scheduled vacation and after he had announced his retirement.  The letter alleged unethical behavior and misconduct by Chief Carter, City Councilman Joe Pecsi, and City Administrator Jim Tatum.

The City of Bishop hired Norman A. Traub Associates to conduct a investigation to determine the facts and circumstances alleged in and surrounding the letter.   Lead investigator Jeffry Johnson conducted 25 recored interviews and presented his findings to City Attorney Ryan Jones.  The final report, 623 pages, was delivered on February 23rd.  The report analyzed 17 allegations of misconduct and 13 allegations of mismanagement.

According to a statement from the city of Bishop, “The Final report determined that all of the allegations against Councilman Joe Pecsi, and City Administrator Jim Tatum were UNFOUNDED.  The Final Report also determined that with two exceptions all allegations against Chief Chris Carter were either UNFOUNDED or EXONERATED.  The allegation that Chief Carter had on two occasions used inappropriate language in dealing with police officers was SUSTAINED.  The additional allegation that Chief Carter failed to facilitate firearms qualifications to all sworn personnel on a quarterly basis as required by policy was also SUSTAINED.  With respect to the firearms qualification, the Bishop Police Department is taking steps to ensure policy compliance.  It is with the permission of Chief Carter, Jim Tatum, and Joe Pecsi that the findings noted above have been disclosed.”

The statement released by the city of Bishop also notes that, “All other allegations dealt with in the Final Report involve police personnel and are confidential under California law.  Because the Final Report addressed so many allegations, and in so much commingled detail, it is impossible to release any part of the report itself without violating California law.

The city is providing the Final Report to the Inyo County Grand Jury.

A link to the full City of Bishop statement http://www.cityofbishop.com/wp-content/uploads/March-9-2016-City-of-Bishop-Press-Release.pdf

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Mono County Arrest

Standoff ends with Arrest

Submitted by the Mono County Sheriffs Department
February 26, 2016
In the early afternoon of Thursday, February 25, 2016, Mono County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to Adobe Ranch Road, south of Highway 120 East, to investigate a report of a squatter in a vacant cabin. The suspect, later identified as William Ward, broke into the property and illegally took up residence.
A deputy spotted Mr. Ward driving an older sport utility vehicle toward him on a narrow dirt road. As the truck approached, the deputy blocked the road with his patrol vehicle and turned on his light bar. Mr. Ward accelerated his truck and rammed the patrol vehicle. Fortunately, the deputy was able to get out of his truck
prior to the impact. Mr. Ward reversed his truck and retreated toward the cabin.  Two deputies and a sergeant gave chase, eventually returning to the cabin.
Mr. Ward took refuge in the cabin, and the pursuing deputies took positions of cover and ordered him to surrender. A request was made for additional resources, and law enforcement officers from throughout Mono and Inyo Counties, along with support from medics and CalTrans, immediately deployed to the scene.
Meanwhile, Mono County Dispatch researched Mr. Ward’s criminal history. Mr. Ward had felony convictions for weapons-related offenses and had been incarcerated in state prison twice for those offenses.
As the afternoon grew into evening, Mr. Ward exited the cabin, armed with a rifle, and fired in the direction of law enforcement, shouting that they would have to kill him. Mr. Ward barricaded himself in the cabin, and it was clear he had no intention of ending the stand-off peacefully.  A coordinated plan was put into place to
diminish Mr. Ward’s capabilities, while allowing responding personnel to safely take him into custody. Tear gas was deployed into the cabin, and team entered the cabin. Although Mr. Ward was still armed and fought being arrested, the team successfully disarmed him and took him down without significant injury.
Medics were standing by and treated Mr. Ward for exposure to tear gas.  No responding personnel suffered injury during this incident. Many thanks to the responding personnel from the California Highway Patrol, Inyo County Sheriff’s Office, Bishop Police Department, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, United States Forest Service, California State Parks, California Department of Transportation, Mono County Paramedics, and, of course, the Mono County Sheriff’s Office.
Booking Charges for William Ward:
69 Penal Code:Felony Resisting / Obstructing a Peace Officer
245 Penal Code: Felony Assault with a Deadly Weapon
417.8 Penal Code: Felony Exhibit a Firearm to Resist Arrest
459 Penal Code: Felony Burglary
2800.2(a) Vehicle Code: Felony Evading a Peace Officer
photo courtesy Mono County Sheriffs Department
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Early Morning Crash on Main Street Bishop

Bishop PD Details Single Vehicle Crash Wednesday

note: The Bishop Police Department is providing additional details and photos from a Wednesday Morning crash.  Photos provided by the Bishop Police Department.
Submitted by The Bishop Police Department
February 25, 2016
On Wednesday, February 24, 2016 at approximately 0046 hours, the Bishop Police Department received a report of vehicle on its side near the 500 block of North Main Street in front of the Bishop McDonald’s. Bishop Police Officers and medics from Symons Ambulance arrived a short time later and located a passenger vehicle on its driver’s side and partially blocking North Main Street.
The driver of the vehicle, a 61 year old male from Reno, Nevada told officers that he became distracted by the vehicle’s navigation system which caused him to veer off the roadway and strike a light pole, in turn causing his vehicle to lose control and land on its side.
The driver appeared uninjured and was not under the influence. He was treated and released by medics from the scene. With the assistance of Bishop Police Officers, the vehicle was returned to its wheels and driven away from the scene.
The investigation is continuing, and any one with additional information is encouraged to contact the Bishop Police Department (760) 873-5866.   Jessica Scida, Public Information Officer.
Photo provided by the Bishop Police Department
car 2
Photo Provided by the Bishop Police Department
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Shots Fired, Man arrested

Tuesday Night Incident Ends with Arrest

February 4, 2016
by Arnie Palu

The Inyo County Sheriffs department has released additional details into a situation that played out Tuesday evening on South Pa Ha Lane.  In addition to the Inyo Sheriffs department, members of the Bishop Police Department and California Highway Patrol responded to the scene Tuesday night.  Law enforcement was sent to the 200th block of South Pa Ha lane on the Bishop reservation on the report of a subject firing a gun.   Wednesday afternoon the Inyo County Sheriffs department issued the following statement.

Last night (Tuesday, February 2nd) at approximately 8:30pm Inyo County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to PaHa Lane, west of Bishop, due to shots being fired in a residential area.  Deputies responded and obtained witness statements that confirmed that three gunshots did take place outside a residence. Two suspects were questioned and released, and one suspect was arrested at the scene. Raymond Joseph Bencoma III, a 40-year old man from Bishop, was taken into custody and booked under the following charge: felony assault with firearm. Bail has been set at $25,000.”

Bencoma, Raymond Joseph III
Raymond Joseph Bencoma III. photo provided by the inyo county sheriffs department

Investigators are encouraging anyone with additional information to contact the Inyo County Sheriff’s Office at 760-878-0383, or you may use the following link:  http://www.inyocounty.us/so/report-crime/

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Marsh Sentencing Continued

Sentencing delayed for Dolores Marsh

by Arnie Palu
January 21, 2016

Bishop resident Dolores Kay “Lola” Marsh appeared in Inyo County Court Wednesday for sentencing.  On November 19th, 2015, Marsh plead guilty to two felonies, admitting to a felony count of grand theft and forgery. Terms of the agreement requiring Marsh pay $322,000 in restitution and serve 2 years in jail. Marsh was expected to sell her home and pay $100,000 to the victims, Inyo Mono Body shop, at sentencing Wednesday. At yesterdays proceeding it was revealed that the Marsh’s have been unable to sell their home, Judge Brian Lamb rescheduled sentencing for Wednesday, April 6th, allowing time to sell the home.

Marsh, currently out of custody on bond, will begin serving her two year jail term next week. Lola Marsh was ordered to enter custody on Tuesday, January 26th. Judge Brian Lamb noting that while Marsh will report to Inyo County Jail for processing, Mono County Jail would be an option for serving the two year term.

The case was prosecuted by the office of the Attorney General, with Edward Skelly speaking for the people at yesterdays sentencing.

The case was investigated by the Bishop Police Department, Sargent David Jepson was alongside Skelly for Wednesdays proceedings.

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