Law Enforcement Helicopter Circles Grows and Southern Humboldt Town Yesterday
At least one law enforcement helicopter and possibly more circled over cannabis grows and the town of Redway in Southern Humboldt yesterday.
According to one resident of the Kings Range area, about 1:30 p.m. “low flying black helicopters” flew over permitted grows on Wilder Ridge Road in the Honeydew area and then southwest into the Kings Range mountains.
Reports on social media indicate that at least one helicopter then flew east to Miranda and south to Redway. There, according to a reader, about 2:15 p.m., a single helicopter circled the small Southern Humboldt town at least four times “decreasing height with every pass.”
The reader in Redway took these photos showing the N Number of the chopper is N487HB. That is the same helicopter which flew over Southern Humboldt grows on August 30 and August 31 and about a week previously on August 22.
At the time we learned that the helicopter with that number was registered to the Arizona Law Enforcement Air Support. The Company is set up as a non profit (with a failing score on Charity Navigator) and in June of 2022 donated a helicopter to the Butte County Sheriff’s Department.
A Facebook post from the Butte County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue on July 2 shows Helicopter N487HB belongs to the Butte County Sheriff’s Department though it is still registered with the Arizona Law Enforcement Air Support.
The Butte County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO) says on their website, “BCSO utilizes…aircraft to locate and eradicate illegal marijuana gardens, assist in Search and Rescue missions, take aerial photographs of crime scenes and assists to patrol officers during pursuits are some of the types of missions our aircraft are used for. BCSO currently has four helicopter pilots and three fixed wing pilots.”
About six weeks ago when KMUD and Redheaded Blackbelt requested information from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Department (and other agencies) about who was responsible for the flights, no one acknowledged responsibility.
Below is KMUD’s piece from the end of August about the helicopter in which Supervisor Michelle Bushnell stated that she believed that if the garden flown by the helicopter is a licensed cultivation site, then law enforcement is “not there for you.”