Tag Archives: Inyo County Jail


Dawndee Rossy sentenced to 9 years in State Prison

Posted by Seth Conners

    According to Inyo County District Attorney Tom Hardy, former Inyo County Health & Human Services Integrated Caseworker Supervisor Dawndee Rossy was sentenced today to nine years in prison to be served at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.  Ms. Rossy has been in custody at the Inyo County Jail since August 29, 2016, and will soon be transported to the reception center for the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.  She was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $1,543,785.24, plus an additional $272,491.00 for unpaid state income tax.
            The sentencing followed a long legal process which began in January, 2013 when irregularities were discovered in a public assistance benefit case supervised by Ms. Rossy.  Upon being interviewed by Bishop Police Department and District Attorney Investigators, Ms. Rossy admitted her involvement in diverting public assistance monies to her own use.
            The complex investigation that followed revealed over thirty false or fraudulent welfare accounts created or reopened by Ms. Rossy. The evidence at trial showed that she developed a sophisticated plan whereby she acquired social security numbers and other identifying information for individuals living throughout the country and created public assistance benefit accounts on their behalf in Inyo County.  The benefits were then placed on electronic benefit cards (similar to ATM or credit cards) which she then used to withdraw cash for her own benefit.  Ms. Rossy forged and filed hundreds of false documents in the cases, creating a realistic looking “paper trail” justifying the benefit awards.  None of the individuals whose identities were stolen were aware that their identifying information was being used improperly.  Obviously forged documents were found in a search of her office, and she was recorded using electronic benefit cards issued to fraudulent cases at local financial institutions.
            The trial in her case began in February, 2016 before the Honorable Philip Argento, who was assigned to the case by the California Judicial Council.  Over the course of the multi-week non-jury trial, over 450 exhibits were admitted into evidence, and the court heard testimony from more than twenty witnesses.  On August 15, 2016, Judge Argento found Ms. Rossy guilty of 88 separate felonies including grand theft, embezzlement, conspiracy to commit theft, misappropriation of public funds, forgery, identity theft, manufacture of deceptive identification documents, filing false documents in public records, and state income tax evasion.  He also found to be “true” various enhancements regarding the amount of loss, and found that Ms. Rossy had misappropriated $1,543,785.24.
            The investigation was coordinated by DA Investigator Stephanie Rennie and Bishop Police Officer Mark Gutierrez (now an Inyo County Sheriff’s Deputy).  The tax fraud investigation was conducted by Special Agent Karen Lees of the California Franchise Tax Board.  District Attorney Tom Hardy personally handled the trial proceedings.  Invaluable assistance was also provided by the Fiscal Services office of the County Department of Health and Human Services as well as current and former Health and Human Services Employment and Public Assistance staff.


Inmate found dead in her cell on Christmas Eve.

By Seth Conners

According to a press release from Inyo County Sheriffs Office, on Saturday December 24th, at approximately 5 am, Inyo County Jail staff was conducting wakeup at the facility.  While doing so the jail staff attempted to wake up a 46 year old female who was in a cell by herself.  Jail staff found the 46 year old female unresponsive and it was determined that she was deceased.  No foul play is suspected.

The identity of the deceased female has not been released due to notification of next of kin.  Investigators from the Sheriffs Department and the District Attorneys office responded to the death.  As a protocol, the Inyo County District Attorney’s Office is handling the in-custody death investigation.  According to Tom Hardy at the D A’s office, the Inyo County District Attorney’s Office confirms that the Sheriff’s Department has, per standard protocol, requested the office to assume investigation of the December 24th death of the Inyo County Jail inmate.  Again the initial inquiry does not indicate any foul play.  The investigation is in its initial stages, and more information will be released when it is appropriate.

Inyo Sheriffs Department Arrest two

Inyo Sheriffs Department  Makes Two Arrests

Raymond Gutierrez, age 59 of Bishop and Brandon Decker, age 33, of Bishop are taken into custody.  Two Inyo Sheriffs deputies were injured while apprehending Decker.  The Inyo County Sheriffs Department issued the following statement detailing the two arrests Tuesday. 

Inyo County Sheriffs Department Statement

January 6, 2016

Last night at 9:00pm Inyo County Sheriff’s Dispatch received notification of a domestic disturbance that took place approximately an hour earlier at the intersection of Winuba and Diaz (west of Bishop). According to an interview with the victim, she was assaulted at the intersection by Raymond Vidal Gutierrez a 59 year old man from Bishop. Gutierrez was released from custody from the Inyo County Sheriff’s Office on January 5th; he was being held on an Inyo County warrant from 2004 for a felony weapons charge and probation violation. Prior to his transfer to the Inyo County Jail, Gutierrez spent 11-years with the California Department of Corrections for felony domestic abuse and false imprisonment charges. Gutierrez was not located at the scene.

At approximately 3:00am Gutierrez was located by Bishop Police at Denney’s restaurant in Bishop and placed under arrest.  He was transported to the Inyo County Jail and booked under the following charges: felony violation of parole (no bail), and felony domestic abuse. 

Raymond Vidal Gutierrez. Photo by Inyo County SO

            At about 2:00am this morning Inyo County Sheriff’s Dispatch received a 911 call regarding a burglary in progress west of Bishop near Manor Market. According to the reporting party, a man (later identified as 33 year old Brandon Decker from Bishop), broke into the residence through an unlocked backdoor and stole several items. Sheriff’s Deputies arrived shortly after the 911 call and completed a thorough check of the area. Decker was spotted about four houses down from the house that was broken into; he appeared to be breaking into that residence as well (later it was determined that Decker lived there with his father). Deputies noticed a pistol shaped object in Decker’s hand as he was entering the house and a holster on his right hip. After entering the property Decker locked the front door. Sheriff’s Deputies were able to convince Decker to come out of the house; however Decker resisted arrest and a physical altercation ensued. The two Sheriff’s Deputies sustained minor injuries in the process, but eventually Decker was taken into custody and transported to the Inyo County Jail.

Decker was booked under the following charges: felony burglary, felony obstruction, felony firearm charge, and misdemeanor receiving stolen property. Bail has been set at $100,000.

Brandon Decker, photo by Inyo County SO
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Former Inyo Correctional officer jailed

Debra Didisee enters guilty plea, reports to jail

Former Inyo County Sheriffs Department correctional officer Debra Didisee recently plead guilty to a felony count of grand theft by embezzlement.  The guilty plea was entered on June 24th.  While sentencing is set for August 26th, Inyo County District Attorney Tom Hardy indicates Didisee asked to begin her term in Inyo County Jail.  Didisee was booked into Inyo County Jail on Friday, July 3rd.  According to Hardy, if Didisee pays $13,000 of restitution by sentencing, she will serve a agreed 180 days in jail and face five years of probation.  The District Attorney notes probation will include substance and alcohol abuse terms and require that she not manage money of others without permission of probation and/or the court.  Hardy is anticipating Didisee will pay the initial restitution, but if not, the court could impose up to a one year jail term.  The $13,000 restitution amount is described as an agreed minimum.

inyo so
Booking Photo, Debra Didisee. Courtesy of inyo county sheriffs department.

At the time of her initial arrest back in March, the District Attorney indicated the matter was being investigated on referral from the Inyo County Sheriffs Department.  The investigation began when the Sheriffs Department became aware of missing funds in the Inmate Welfare Account and the Inmate Commissary Account at the Inyo County Jail.

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Former Inyo SO employee arrested

Debra Didisee Arrested on Embezzlement Charges

District Attorney Investigators arrested former Correctional Officer Debra Didisee on embezzlement charges Thursday morning after she voluntarily surrendered herself at the DA’s office. The District Attorney has filed a complaint alleging six felony counts and one misdemeanor count of embezzlement which are alleged to have occurred over a four year period while she was employed as a Correctional Officer for the Inyo County Sheriff. The Sheriff had referred the matter to the District Attorney’s office for investigation in December when the Sheriff’s Department became aware of potential missing funds in the Inmate Welfare Account and the Inmate Commissary Account at the Inyo County Jail. Ms. Didisee is no longer employed by the Sheriff’s Department.

Ms. Didisee was booked at the Inyo County Jail and posted a $35,000.00 bail bond. She was ordered to appear in the Inyo County Superior Court on April 20, 2015.

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Three Inyo County Men Face Drug-Related Charges, Held on Bail

Inyo Narcotics Enforcement Team Makes Arrest in Bishop

For Immediate Release

On Monday, October 6th at approximately noon Agents with the Inyo Narcotics Enforcement Team (INET) contacted Felis Luis Landa Jr. (age 26) of Bishop, Kevin Douglas Elliott (age 24) of Big Pine, and Alberto Verdugo Flores (age 30) of San Diego in the parking lot of the Bishop McDonald’s due to possible criminal activity.

During the contact, Alberto Flores took off running and ignored the Agent’s commands to “stop”.  Flores ran through traffic across Main Street as INET Agents and Officers from the Bishop Police Department pursued on foot.  As Flores was running, Officers noticed he had a plastic bag(s) in his hand.

Landa,Flores,Elliott arrest

Flores was apprehended by Bishop Police Officers in front of a residence on Hammond Street.  Agents and Officers then searched the area where Flores was taken into custody and found three plastic bags containing methamphetamine inside a trash can.  Agents estimated the total amount of methamphetamine to be about two ounces.

Flores, Landa, and Elliott were arrested and charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance, Transportation of a Controlled Substance, Possession of a Controlled Substance for Sale, and Conspiracy.  Flores was additionally charged for Resisting and Delaying an Officer.  All three were transported to the Inyo County Jail; bail has been set at $25,000 each.


Flores, Alberto
Flores, Alberto
Elliott, Kevin
Elliott, Kevin
Landa, Felis
Landa, Felis

Inyo Narcotics Enforcement Team Makes Arrest in Bishop


Inyo Narcotics Enforcement Team / Bishop / Eastern Sierra / Inyo County / Arrest / Inyo County Jail

Bishop Resident Rebecca Bragdon Pleads Guilty

Bragdon Enters Pleas of “Guilty” to Misappropriation of Public Funds from the Tri-County Fairgrounds – Bishop, CA

August 21, 2014

The Inyo County District Attorney’s office announced today that Bishop-area resident Rebecca Bragdon has entered pleas of “guilty” to misappropriation of public funds from the Tri-County Fairgrounds.

The pleas arose from charges that she embezzled funds from the Fairgrounds when she was employed as an office manager from July 2012 through July 2013. The matter was originally investigated by the Inland Division of the California Highway Patrol.

Ms. Bragdon plead guilty to violating Penal Code section 424, commonly known as misappropriation of public funds, and Penal Code section 470, commonly known as forgery. Both charges are felonies.

Restitution was also set in the case at $25,979.82. Sentencing has been set for October 22, 2014.

Under the terms of an agreed disposition, Ms. Bragdon may be ordered to serve up to one year in the Inyo County Jail and will be placed on five years of formal probation. Probation terms will include requirements that she pay restitution and be subject to search for stolen property, as well as any other terms as may be deemed appropriate by the sentencing court.

By entering the pleas, she will also be barred from holding any public office. The term of incarceration will be determined by the court at the time of sentencing.

Any questions or requests for further information can be directed to District Attorney Tom Hardy at 760.878.0282 or 760.873.6657.


Bragdon Enters Pleas of “Guilty” to Misappropriation of Public Funds from the Tri-County Fairgrounds – Bishop, CA


Inyo County / Bishop / Tri-County Fairgrounds / Public Funds / Guilty / Rebecca Bragdon / Restitution / Inyo County District Attorney’s Office