A traffic stop on Highway 29 near Hidden Valley Lake in Lake County led to the arrest of a Sonoma man on suspicion of drug violations, the Lake County Sheriff's Department said.
Deputies searching the man's vehicle found a pound of crystal methamphetamine in a plastic food container that was inside a laptop case on the floor behind the driver's seat, Lt. Steve Brooks said in a press release.
The Sheriff's Narcotics Task Force said it was the largest single methamphetamine seizure in the county this year.
A patrol deputy in the Middletown area spotted a Mazda RX8 with several vehicle code violations about 3:50 p.m. Thursday on the highway near Hidden Valley Road, Brooks said.
A drug detection dog indicated the odor of a controlled substance from outside the car, and when her handler opened the door the dog immediately jumped into the back seat and focused on the floor, he said.
The driver and sole occupant of the car, Luis Fernando Valdivia-Castellanos, 22, was arrested on suspicion of possessing and transporting a controlled substance for sale.
Deputies also seized $1,041 in cash, Brooks said.
What they say about Steve Baxman
“I love Steve. He’s our local hero. I jokingly say he sleeps with his boots on. He’s always ready to come out and take care of people.”
Diane Barth, longtime Monte Rio resident
“He’s no stranger to controversy. I’ve defended him a number of times. (But) I tell people if you’re the one who goes over a cliff or find yourself in a perilous situation of any kind, he’s the face you want to see.”
Andy Pforsich, former Gold Ridge fire chief
“As good or bad or difficult as some of the calls might be, he finds a way to lighten the mood. He doesn’t take away from the seriousness, but he lessens the heartache of people involved, patients and responders.”
Sean Grinnell, Bodega Bay fire chief
“I think my brother has done a tremendous amount of good but he doesn’t do this alone. He has a wonderful supporting cast that never gets any credit.”
Deanna Baxman, retired Cal Fire division chief
“Sometimes you have to realize when politically you have to watch what you say. Steve doesn’t care.”
Dan George, Gold Ridge fire chief
“It’s very helpful when Steve shows up. He can keep a crazy situation calm. If we get a call at three in the morning chances are he’s there. I don’t think the guy sleeps.”
Dan Mori, Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy
“Some people love to hate him. But they call him, not 911. What does that tell you?”
Max Ming, Russian River fire chief
“He’s a true legend. I don’t know what he’s made of but he’s definitely made of something else.”
Efren Carrillo, Sonoma County supervisor
“He can never be replaced. He’s been doing it over 40 years now. No one can fill those shoes.”
Marshall Turbeville, Cal Fire battalion chief
“He’s a character. It leads people to not think he is the real deal. He is the real deal. He’s one of the legends of Sonoma County.”
Jack Piccinini, chief of Windsor and Rincon Valley fire districts
“He’s not talking out of the side of his mouth. You get what’s in front of you. I think he’s been a remarkable resource for the county.”
Ray Mulas, Schell‑Vista fire chief