CHP Asks For Help Finding Two Suspected in Hit and Run Deaths of Teenagers

hit and run vigil by Patsy Yazzolino

Candlelight vigil for the two teenage victims of a hit and run near Fortuna. [Photo by Patsy Yazzolino]

This is a press release from the California Highway Patrol. The information has not been proven in a court of law and any individuals described should be presumed innocent until proven guilty:

The California Highway Patrol (CHP), Humboldt Area, has worked diligently to identify the driver of the gray 2015 Jeep Wrangler which was involved in last week’s fatal hit and run traffic collision in Fortuna, on July 12, 2016.  After the execution of a search warrant, the Jeep was recovered by CHP investigators on Wednesday, July 13, 2016.  The Jeep was located in a fenced backyard, behind a gate, at the registered owner’s home.

Investigators have made multiple attempts to contact Ms. Marcia Maelinda Kitchen, the registered owner of the Jeep, and her boyfriend, Mr. Joshua Wren Pearlston, for questioning.  Upon the CHP locating the Jeep, Ms. Kitchen’s attorney contacted the CHP to help facilitate her questioning.  At this time, Ms. Kitchen and Mr. Pearlston have not made themselves available to investigators and their whereabouts are unknown.

The CHP is asking for the public’s assistance in locating Ms. Kitchen and Mr. Pearlston as they are parties of interest in this investigation.  As a reminder to the public, the CHP may file criminal charges on anyone who has provided aid in hiding or concealing evidence in this case.

We ask the public to please be patient with us as this investigation continues to unfold; this is a very complex case and we have to be thorough to ensure those who are responsible are held accountable for their crimes.  CHP investigators have been working day and night to bring this investigation to a close and we appreciate the public’s assistance and support.


No photos were provided with the press release.

UPDATE 11:00 p.m.: Get the latest information by clicking on this link to Suspect’s Attorneys Refute CHP’s Press Release.

Earlier Chapters:



  • Excellent progress, thank you CHP

  • About time! Thank you LE! Now lets put this on the bulletin boards, facebook, etc!!!

    • Oh and photo’s would be nice!!!

      • Lost Croat Outburst

        Yeah, especially if you’re seriously interested in an interview or arrest. Pictures, how novel. I guess these officers missed the Academy or something. Looks like another stinking, unbelievable homicide trial and yet another re-write of the police procedural manual. Geez, I hope.

  • Food for thought

    Get em. Fuckin crummy Guilty or innocent. But hiding is a clear admission. Poor kids.

  • Hiding after killing your own child….what a coward! Check boyfriends multiple properties , his daddy, or her parents…..they know where they are. Throw charges at them for hiding, aiding and abedding, concealing evidence, harboring a fugitive…..someone will crack!

  • Well how about arresting the Attorney..He knows where she is

    • Ever heard of attorney-client privilege? All the lawyer can do is encourage her to turn herself in and facilitate that happening. And you could be wrong that he does not know exactly where she is, and if he does know that information he can’t be forced to reveal it.

      • I really don’t care arrest him anyway………He said that she was available when ever The CHP was ready to talk to her …So he lied to help her get away…..

        • You’d have to change the Constitution. That’s attorney-client privilege. How would an innocent person be able to defend themselves in court if the government could threaten their lawyer for representing them?

          • It seems more like he is lying and knows where they are but is hiding them which, as the article states, is illegal.
            He made a good faith call to the chp saying his client was available whenever the police needed said person. This is in a few of the previous articles on this site. He claimed to have given the locale of the Jeep to the police, tho the cops said they were already on it, I mean they went to that house to inform the mom of her kids death, right? I would guess they saw the Jeep themselves. The attorney said that so it would appear he and his client wanted to assist the police.
            This is a gnarly lawyer, his last client got 6 months for killing a man with her car, so I dont think he cares about anything but getting this lady off. That’s probably why the chp are being so careful in this case, this lawyer knows the trix!
            Isn’t hiding her location considered aiding and abetting if she’s calling him with her whereabouts? I don’t know enuf about attrny/client priveleges, I get not having to talk about the case but hiding wanted persons also falls into this category? Eric Kirk can u tell us?

  • Justice please.

    Did she leave her remaining child behind while she ran? How heartless.

  • This is Marci kitchen

  • WTF CHP???!!! You gave them a week head start. You found the damn jeep in the suspects back yard!!! Barney Fife wannabes. Can you even tie your shoes?

    • Lost Croat Outburst

      See, if they had found 800 plants in the backyard they could have made an immediate arrest, but just some ol’ jeep that probably ran over two little girls, . . . . Well. . . I dunno, man. We have to do more research and stuff.

  • Straight up guilty….if you know anything you better start talking or you will be sharing a cell with these two dirt bags…..”book em dano”

  • They should have been arrested as soon as the damn jeep was found why does the chp need us to tell them that….are you high on donuts again and then you ask for patience

    • They have to get all the info the DA needs to build a solid case so they don’t end up with mistrial, etc. The attorney is a shark and they know it.
      I don’t get why taking them into custody right away could have backfired on the case but something tells me we will find out soon. She had that lawyer within a few hours which points to guilt to me! The legal system is so intricate and unfortunately often makes no common sense.

  • ***Anyone with information regarding this investigation should contact the Humboldt Area CHP office at 707-822-5981 during business hours or the Humboldt Communications Center at 707-268-2000 after business hours.*****

  • Wow that’s a kick in the teeth!I’m sorry but CHP I thought I red a little ditty,she handed over the keys?or was it her liar,lawyer sorry?as a suspect she he should have been detained,or at least the registered owner.i just don’t were told they can’t be located.nah

  • If you do a search of Attorney’s Pearlston and Okin, you will find that they were on a marijuana panel together. Obviously somebody ran to Daddy, who then set him up with a good hiding spot. With that kind of backup, it may take a while to find them. So sad. I am sure the truth will come out in the long run.

    • wow. I’m speechless. wtf? okin and pearlston go way back!!! this is getting crazier and crazier. i hope, so much, that these truths do come out

  • At least make rounds to any properties either one of them might own. Can we get photos so we know who we are looking for?

  • Why are they not looking for the son who was the driver? Also his buddy that was with him?

    • Momma P sounds like you know something…please do tell.

    • It obviously wasnt the son driving or they would be looking for him too (who btw isnt in hiding). Get your facts straight before accusing somebody of something so horrible on a public site.

      • Lost Croat Outburst

        Get YOUR facts straight. If the boyfriend or “son” is not in hiding, why is the CHP begging and pleading yo talk to him. ‘Splain that one to me, Lucy.

    • I don’t know where you get your information, but you better check again. They know where the brother is. It’s the mom and her boyfriend that did this. This poor teenage boy is being mentally abused by his mother and you, for letting these lies continue.

    • The 911 caller said “she’…. and the son is not in hiding! You should probably research, before you accuse any child. He’s is pain from losing his sister and now his mother! Accusing a child of this is absolutely insensitive. . You should be ashamed Mama P

    • The son was NOT driving!!!! He’s with his dad! Tramatized for sure.

    • The 911 caller said “she’…. and the son is not in hiding! You should probably research, before you accuse any child. He’s is pain from losing his sister and now his mother!

    • Someone who knows

      U don’t know what ur talking about. Stop making up lies.

    • The son wasn’t driving!! The guy who called 911 stated in his call that it was a female driver. Don’t talk shit. It’ll mess up that poor kid more than what he already is right now

  • Found on Lostcoast a picture of Marci Kitchen.

    I hope I did this right!

    • Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank you! It would make the cops look a little more professional if they too could grab a pic off Facebook or somewhere to put with their press release.

      • Law enforcement has access to DMV photos. They have the ability for some reason they have chosen not to put out photos.

        • Lost Croat Outburst

          Exactly right, Kymster! What kind of convoluted game is going on here? Since when has law enforcement or journalists refrained from posting FB or DMV or any other photos of celebrities or suspects. I hope you or somebody stays on this. Another reeking local homicide case coming up.

  • Whoa. Seeing Josh Pearlston’s name here is a bigger earthquake than that little 4.8. Bummer!! Josh get it right, what the heck!

    • Pic of this looser please. This is not the marci i know. She was drunk and obnoxious at the hospital! Rumors say he has property in costa rico and other places too.

  • The previous report from the eyewitness posits “she”, apparently the mother, as driver. The eyewitness saw the Jeep by the body on the road flee the scene before he arrived. Who would flee the scene of their own dying child let alone anyone dying? Someone sick enough in their own mind that they would think of themself instead. Someone selfish enough also to commit homicide in my belief. Horrifying. No other explanation seems plausible based on the mother’s evasive behavior. This is so disturbing. A monstrous act beyond what most of us can fathom. Looks and smells like murder to me.

    • I agree with you. To leave anyone dying in the road is beyond my way of thinking. Whoever the driver was needs to be strung up and left. Her child died in the road and she is thinking of herself and/or boyfriend. What a horrible person.

  • Mama P ………it’s the mother and boyfriend ….please leave the son alone ….he is innocent……and a victim of horrible circumstances and attacks like yours….. hasn’t he been through enough!!!! Leave him alone PLEASE!!!

  • I said it once and I’ll say it again, marcie is holding as tight as she can to the little bit of freedom she has left, she knows it’ll be short but not sweet, considering she probably cant get the thought of being wanted for a double homicide off her mind or the sight of her daughter every time she close her eyes, its only a matter of time and both those fools will get there day in court…

  • There seems to be a great deal of desire to catch and “punish” whoever ran over these girls. I`m a little perplexed about how some sort of punishment will improve things on the grand scale. Does anyone believe this was done on purpose? Almost certainly it wasn`t; therefore, it was an accident. Is punishment going to stop this from happening in the future? If anyone believes this, how is this going to result in anyone driving more carefully? Is every driver going to hold in their minds the image of a dark, roach infested prison cell and drive more carefully? Is this simply retribution — as in the laws of Nebuchadnezzar? What sort of punishment is appropriate for someone who accidentally killed their own child and another? Isn`t that punishment in itself? Perhaps I`m strange but I would be feeling more than a little remorse. Why are people baying to see punishment? Would they like to see public burnings, “necklacing” perhaps?

    • I always appreciate philosophically rowing against the flow, but in this case, I am with the angry mob. First, why would you assume it wasn’t on purpose? Can you imagine NOT seeing two people on a straight stretch of roadway… or not at least veering (leaving skid marks and a messy scene) and trying hella hard to miss, then jumping out to see what happened or if there were any hope of helping? It really does look like it may have been intentional.
      Second, yes, part of it is old-fashioned retribution… the urge to find an object for one’s anger at the unfairness of the universe. And what better object than the ones responsible for the unfair event?
      Third, the preventative power is in a sort of herd sense. You’re right, it’s not as if this one event,if punished radically, would in itself stop someone in the future from doing something similar. It’s more of a general sense we try to impart, to raise our kids with: Drunk driving, or crazy driving, running people over, leaving scenes of crime, fleeing law enforcement… especially when the victim(s) were children, and especially when one’s own children… is Bad. Super Bad. Not to be tolerated. Severely punishable. Definitely shameful. You will be hated, dishonored, ridiculed, reduced in all ways possible. You will lose freedom, money, respect. You just plain would never, ever want to do such things. It doesn’t even need to have to do with God. Your fellow humans will judge you and exile you.
      Personally, i think that’s a good sense of right and wrong to instill. And you only teach that lesson when repeatedly, that’s what happens–consequences for wrong action. So yeah, in general terms, a mass outpouring of righteous anger does prevent future crimes.

      • I’m totally snd 100% with lauracoosky on this…. i couldn’t have said it better….or even as good

      • at this point probably a thousand people in Humboldt know the real story….She was driving, Josh was in a truck someways back, like a mile behind. She fucked up and ran over two kids…she claims she thought she hit a deer. maybe she was changing music? maybe sending a text….She drove home which was less than a mile from where she felt the shock…Josh showed up at the house shortly thereafter, saying, “girl, someone just hit your kid!” Marci was on the helicopter to Oakland with her daughter…

        there are no excuses here, but I have compassion for her…Can you imagine that moment when she figured out that she had just killed her own daughter? as I said, unspeakable…just so much pain.

        so sorry

        • She also killed another girl. Her name is Faith. Or are we only talking about poor Marci ? /sarc.

        • I call bullshit on your story!@unspeakable

          • true despite your bullshit call of bullshit….Josh’s truck is in the early CHP photo…Marci was in Oakland when her daughter died….whatever. simultaneously heartless and clueless people aren’t worth the time/. to Salt I will say you are right to bring up Faith, and all the angles in this story are unspeakably sad. hers might just be the worst.

            preaching compassion in an internet comment thread is about as quixotic as it gets I guess, but there are a lot of lurkers who deserve to read that not everyone in Humboldt is all for retributive justice and mob rule….

        • You say Josh was driving right behind marci,about a mile or so? Then he would of come across that poor little girl laying in the road ( already deceased) or shortly after.You say he walked in her house and said “girl someone just hit your kid” and I suppose at the same time hurriedly hid the jeep in the gated back yard.Your story makes me sick! I know the road,I use it daily,I see the house,the yard,cars,trucks..If Josh wasn’t in the same vehicle as Marci then he was right behind her like you said,otherwise he wouldn’t of been able to get to Marci,s house once CHP blocked all access. My guess is,he was in the same vehicle.

        • Lost Croat Outburst

          The moment when she figured it out? Yeah, right. Sheeeeesh.

      • Lost Croat Outburst

        Yes to Laura, no to Fritz. So, Fritz, anybody can do anything to anybody, anytime, and suffer with guilt the rest of their days. That’s cold comfort to the vic(s) and a false assumption on your part that everybody has a conscience commensurate with yours. Many, many people don’t give a damn what happens to others, only to themselves. Obviously, already it is obvious that these dead girls mean NOTHING to the alleged perps.

    • For child killers, child molesters, child abusers and anyone that harms children physically, emotionally, psychologically, or mentally…. I’m all for a lynch mob. Children are our future. Our main job as a mother, as a parent is to protect our children. This woman Marci is an epic FAIL! But that’s just opinion.

    • Well, I would like them to be responsible adults and admit to the “accident”. Be a mother to the child she has left. Maybe put him first?

    • Fritz Harmann I couldn’t agree more. Seeing the public Lynch mob mentality is really frightening. No matter where Marci is, she is hurting terribly I suspect. I personally feel there is nothing gained by throwing her in jail. I don’t get the impression that this person is a danger to society. It’s what they choose to do after is what’s horrifying to us who can’t imagine hitting a human with our car and running away with out aiding immediate help. Clearly they had something big to hide. Literally. I think they knew they hit humans but didn’t know who the humans were. If she knew she ran over her own daughter I can’t imagine she would have left the scene or yes she would be the monster people are making her out to be.
      God forbid any of us find ourselves in this position. Lessons are to be learned here. Dont drink and drive! Period!

      My heart is with these beautiful girls and their families (even Marci), first responders, and the brave witness who will never be the same. You are on my mind, in my heart. I’m praying for your healing.
      I also hate hearing the scrutiny of our CHP. These people have a seriously hard job. We should appreciate their endless sacrifices and countless hours they are working on this case. We need to support their efforts. Not rip them into shreds on social media.

      • Lost Croat Outburst

        Yeah, sure, as long as it’s not YOUR children just go ahead on with the party. You think they knew they hit humans but WTF, the party can’t stop. This is your world view? We are doomed.

    • Omg are u ignorant????? The excuse for a mother and her shitbag boyfriend hit them and drove away and left them there and tried to cover up what they did and now they are on the run! Yes they should both burn in hell after they rot in prison. You have seriously got to be crazy for thinking otherwise

    • Assuming it was an accident a normal human being would stop if they hit a dog and look around for the owner and either take it for treatment or comfort it while it passed. Here we have a mother who is choosing to not cooperate with an investigation and at the most could have hit her and left her to die in the road or the bushes. I don’t believe the lawyers and I don’t accept the assertion that those seeking justice are on par with those who condone necklaceing.

  • Be surprised if mom is still alive, too much guilt to live with one self, the chp just saved some tax dollars , I reckon

  • Wait, so she retained a lawyer and THEN fled? I’m confused.
    My guess is that she’s going to reach out to Lost Coast Outpost soon to tell “her side of the story” before turning herself in. That seems to be a trend.

  • Pretty sure we.have had enough death around here!!let’s all concentrate on the rest of the hurting family’s.and getting the guilty parties in jail.proof is key

  • Why does she go by Marci Marz on Her FB page? Is that her maiden name? But her vehicle is registered to Marci Kitchen? Might make it harder to find her.

  • Fritz, if this was an accident and she isn’t guilty of something why run? As a mother if I had accidentally ran over my child I would stay at the scene and take whatever the punishment. This woman is a horrible selfish person who deserves nothing other then dying in prison for leaving those poor innocent girls lying in the road.

  • The reason she should be held responsible is she ran. If it was an accident, why would she run? Only reason I can think of is to cover up a dui. If it was murder she didn’t plan it well. Plus, one of the girls was still alive when she left. She could have tried to keep her alive. She could have called an ambulance. Instead she covered her own butt. Her lawyer bought her time. What a mess. Poor girls. Sympathies to the families.

  • Drugs illegal or prescribed make people f*** up, simple as that, is it so hard to live without them? Carry on America!

  • Why didn’t they ask for the public’s help a week ago?

  • Grow whore the cops can find out the registration and owner of said vehicle in five min or less .just saying. .

  • I don’t know any of the people involved in this tragedy, but, like most people in this small community I know someone who knows someone that does. We’ve all become involved with this family. They have become the topic of “water cooler” conversations and speculation county wide. I’ve expressed the opinion that if I were the mother driving I would have stopped immediately. I’ve expressed the opinion that if it were the boyfriend driving he’d best be glad I’m not a gun owner. Then I started reflecting on what I would actually do if confronted with the horror that happened that evening and I just don’t know. I’d like to believe that I would have the courage and moral fortitude to do the right thing but I just don’t know. It’s so easy to judge. It’s so easy to “say” that “I would behave differently” in any given situation. But, unless we’ve been there we just don’t know. Whatever it might be worth my blessings are going out to this family. How do you deal with the pain of what has happened? I am so grateful that I just don’t know.

      • Thank you. This local tragedy, for some reason, has really brought our national and global tragedies into focus for me. I’m a new follower of your site. Miss you at LCOP but I’m impressed. You done good!

    • I must be naive, straight up is the only way I know. Listening to you , I am the minority, that is what is wrong with the world today. Stand up , take responsibility, tell it like it really is, you might be surprised how compassionate people will be

      • I do agree. We all need to take responsibility for our actions both locally and globally. However, I’m an older white woman that has never had to deal with the type of tragedy that happened in Fortuna, or an ongoing war in my country killing my love ones, or being hungry, or being a minority. I would like to believe that I would be brave enough to “walk my talk” but, the way it really is, for me, is that I really don’t know how I would behave or react in any of those situations. Do I want to be tested in any of these ways? NO! Do I wish I knew with certainly that I would react with responsibility, honor and intelligence? YES! I am envious of your confidence in yourself.

      • This is so true. Taking personal responsibility for one’s actions, whatever they were, elicits respect. af

    • I’ve been to th edge and jumped… I’d never hit and run…
      Marci was reckless in life..if yu knew her..were friends…you should have told her…I did… I’d rather had seen her live a good life than a fast party one…her other friends..not…Joe included…
      If you don’t know what you’d do…don’t drive !!!!!!!!!

  • That marcia has not Came for word says it all.. I once was her advocate…now? She’s not taking responsibility and owning this. She’s defiling her daughters memory even more…

  • There are updates on this…looks like DUI…and she knew she hit some kids..
    And did her best to cover it up.

    I’ve thought about this one a lot…knew her…..or thought I did..
    Given the circumstances the community needs to make sure she gets some hard time.. Anything less at this point. Given her complete lack of humanity….

  • Kym,

    Have there been any developments with this story?

  • Smokehouse Mouse

    So, per ABC news this morning, its Caltrans and Humboldt County’s fault now?? Wow is all I can say..

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