Willits Man Sentenced for Molesting a Child Under 10 and for Other Cases

Michael Scott Cruce,Press release from the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office:

A defendant charged with child molestation charges resolved his matter last Friday in the Mendocino County Superior Court by plea and stipulated sentence.

Michael Scott Cruce, age 40, of Willits, entered a no contest plea a felony count charging continuous sexual abuse of a child. He also entered a no contest plea to a separate felony count of committing sexual acts with a child 10 years of age or younger.

By stipulation, defendant Cruce will receive an indeterminate sentence of 15 years to life in state prison for his sexual conduct with the child 10 years of age or younger. Defendant Cruce will also receive a consecutive 6 years in state prison for the continuous sexual abuse count, for an overall aggregated term of 21 years to life for the molestation counts.

Consecutive to the above state prison time, the defendant will also be sentenced to an additional 44 months in state prison on a separate felony case. The defendant also entered a no contest plea to unlawfully driving a motor vehicle under the influence causing great bodily injury to a passenger.

The overall time to be imposed on defendant Cruce is 24 years, 8 months to life in state prison. The sentencing hearing is now set for May 1, 2018 at 9 o’clock in the morning in Department B of the Ukiah courthouse.

Having suffered the two sex convictions, if the parole board should decide in the future that defendant Cruce should be paroled, he will first have to undergo an evaluation to determine whether he continues to pose a danger to society and should be classified a sexually violent predator. Should that evaluation determine he is a sexually violent predator, he will be transferred to Coalinga State Hospital for SVP treatment and only released upon being found by a Mendocino County jury to no longer present a danger to the community.

The prosecutor who is continuing to handle this matter is Assistant District Attorney Richard T. Welsh. The law enforcement agencies who investigated the underlying facts are the Willits Police Department, the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office, the California Department of Justice forensic laboratory, and the District Attorney’s own investigators. The judge who accepted the plea and who will be imposing the agreed-upon sentence on May 1is Mendocino County Superior Court Judge Cindee Mayfield.



  • Okay. So this is a sentence. Why is it that the next county north- Humboldt- can never send people away on sentences that are like this? Mendocino takes serious crime seriously. What is up with Humboldt?!!

  • Agree 100% cherry. He needs to be treated as a human toilet bowl…NOTHING less!

  • So easy to say. So difficult to afford

    Currently there are 33 California prisons. The incarcerate around 130,000 people. Average cost per year to incarcerate one prisoner is $68,000. And that doesn’t include the budgets for police departments and the court systems nor local jails that hold the accused. Do the math. Billions of our tax dollars are spent. Research data projects show long term incarceration of a person when he exits prison is a much worse offender than when they were sent to prison. We have completely lost the reason of incarceration. That is to reform an offender into a better person. Not one that is more dangerous. And before you respond with incarcerate them for life and never let them out that is not what the law states. Nor can we execute everyone who is deemed a high level criminal. These are only off handed wishful thinking. They will never happen. Countries like Canada and Australia focus on what it will take to rehabilitate an offender. When they look at us they see a revolving door of reoffenders. And the cost is going up substantially annually. We are getting close to spending more to imprison people than we are educating people. And five new prisons have been blueprinted because the State cannot keep up with the criminals being sent to a state facilities. So because we spend so many tax dollars to imprison the guilty like we have to add taxes to fuel costs to just keep up with repairs to state highway systems. If we are going to keep the same system of incarceration then like gas taxes every state taxpayer should have to pay an additional tax for each person who is prison just like fuel taxes. And no deductible. You pay the amount upfront like you do with fuel taxes. The dollars collected go directly to the prison budgets. Your added fuel tax will cost you about $100 per year. That would probably be a good starting point for the prison system.

    • I agree that our prisons are revolving doors. The problem is when the government outsourced to companies who run prisons for profit. It does not benefit them to rehabilitate. They are only interested in keeping costs down so their stock holders can pocket more money. It’s sad and frustrating.

    • But this one never needs to be released. But for every one like him we have 8 that don’t need to be sent to prison. Stop using prisons for mental health institutions and we will have lots of room for the sickos

  • i agree with you! No torture but we should put down the sick dogs…But I’m glad that Mendo got at least a 20+ year sentence. My comment was reflecting on Humboldt- where drunks drive over children and get less than a year, Marci Kitchen runs free, etc etc and this guy probably would’ve gotten much less time. At least Mendo does something. Humboldt court system could take a lesson.

  • Why couldn’t I have known there were people out there that would help me when I was a child? I thought all men were like this until I was 14. By then I knew there was no one who was going to help me except me, so I got real, real good with a knife. You cut them side ways, cut them up and down then you cut them deep, real deep. They’ll leave you alone then.

  • There is a huge push, not only in this country but around the world to normalize pedophilia. I would post links but then I would be accused of being a right-wing Nut Job, even though I’m a registered Democrat .I will post one link but you should Google it your self.


  • As a child who was sexually molested by an older neighbor (which law enforcement did NOTHING about & I had to see everyday walking home from school), I can tell you that this a$$hole’s sentence is much leaner than the pain & emotional issues this poor child will suffer for the rest of their lives. When he gets out, this child will still be dealing with the trauma forced upon them. There’s no parole for victim’s pain & suffering.

    I am sickened of how the laws seem to protect & coddle the f*cked up sick people who shouldn’t be roaming our streets & then treat “victims” like they’re criminals for bothering & costing our court system money. Our system is completely upside down.

    A crime like this, in my opinion, should be the death penalty or life in prison at the least. No one who has sexual tendencies towards children ever “gets better”. That’s like saying a homosexual can suddenly become heterosexual. It doesn’t happen.

    • I’m sorry. Saying that for everyone who never did. I know it doesn’t fix the past. But sharing your story may prevent others from experiencing the same. <3 and hopeful prayers to you!

    • You and your parents are responsible for your behavior

      A better question would be WHY were you molested? Did he handcuff you? Put a gag on your mouth. At 14 you should know right from wrong. If you don’t your parents should be arrested on charges they didn’t raise you with values and survival skills. If he talked you into molesting then your parents are still to blame. When I was 13 a coach tried to molest me. I told him if he ever tried to touch me he would be looking for another job in an unemployment line. He never did as much as hand me the basketball after that. I was 13 and my father taught me what to do and say if I was ever put in that position. We practiced role playing. At 26 years old I still use those skills with guys who try to molest me.

      • Anyone who is blaming a 14-year-old for being molested by an adult rather than blaming the adult in that situation has their values screwed up. I don’t often harshly judge people but as a parent and as a teacher I know there are many different types of kids and environments they were raised in. Good for you that you had both the parenting and the personality to defend yourself but blaming children who don’t is irresponsible.

  • Knew a creepy jerk up Spy Rock years ago. He would take his weed money every year to Thailand. He laughed how easy it was for him to flash money and buy a virgin 12yo every year to turn into his slave. He never returned to the same girl. The families apparently were eager to sell the girls off and get the money. He was in his 60’s at the time. Ironically, he died alone of a heart attack on the mountain, neighbors who trimmed for him took his stash and cash before they reported him dead.

  • Isnt that all they do in Willits? Snort Meth, Snort Coke, Get Drunk, fall down, all the 50+ year old coke heads running business, get their fake hair and fake nails done, Eradicate Cannabis, pull over long haired hippies, cut down all the trees, Kick dogs, beat their wives, drink whiskey and abuse children?

    • Thats why they always say; “BYPASS WILLITS” —- spend your cannabis dollars in Ukiah or Humboldt or Sonoma, but NEVER SHOP IN OVER PRICED EXPENSIVE TWEEKER TOWN WILLITS!

  • Why do we allow monsters like this continue to live?????

  • Shawn, do you plan on flushing the constitution after you finish wiping your ass with it? Pretty sure what you are suggesting is the exact definition of cruel and unusual punishment. If we truly think a person cannot be rehabilitated and is just too dangerous to have around then I understand the death penalty, but torturing a human being,,,, who the hell is sick enough to sign up for that job?

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