MURDER VICTIM IN KNEELAND SHOOTING IDENTIFIED
The Humboldt County Coroner's Office has identified the man killed in this week's shooting at a marijuana grow near Kneeland. The dead man has been identified as 40-year-old Mario Roberto Juarez-Madrid of Santa Rosa, Guatemala. The two survivors of Wednesday's shooting have not yet been publically identified by authorities.
Meanwhile, the sheriff's department is releasing new details on the fatal shooting in Kneeland. Authorities say things could've been much worse. The suspect shot at three people. One is dead and another wounded. Officials say the two victims who survived spent 15 hours in the woods hiding from the suspect. The victims tell the sheriff's office they were in fear for their lives. Investigators say the suspect 28-year-old Mykal Wilde of Eureka spent the night trying to hunt down his victims before they could call for help.
Sheriff investigators say Wilde hired the three victims to help cultivate a marijuana grow with over 15 hundred plants. But things quickly turned sideways.
"Wednesday evening there was a dispute of some sort and appears Wilde had a firearm in his possession and he opened fire. At this point we have one deceased male who was discovered yesterday, then we have one injured male and a third person who was uninjured," says Brenda Godsey, with the Humboldt County Sheriff's Dept.
Sheriff Deputies wont release details on what prompted the dispute.
"Investigation has shown that after he shot at those three individuals, again one of them was killed in the marijuana garden, the other two, although one was injured, fled from the scene, they were separated and they fled. But Mr. Wilde continued to search for them through the night," says Godsey.
That's why it took over 15 hours for the victims to finally call for help. Walking three miles form the marijuana grow to the Kneeland airport where one victim was airlifted to a Redding Hospital.
"Both reported they feared for their lives and that he continued to actively search for them throughout the night," says Godsey.
Investigators say shortly after they responded, an officer spotted Wilde in this vehicle a quarter of a mile away from the airport. Officers pulled Wilde out of this pickup truck at gunpoint and took him into custody.
Authorities served a search warrant at Wilde's home and found 20 pounds of processed marijuana, a digital scale and ammunition but they have yet to find the murder weapon. And as for the victims--
"We're not releasing any information about the victims right now. This is still a pretty early investigation and we're still going to try and protect our witness pool," says Godsey.
Wilde is booked in Humboldt County Jail with his bail set at a dollar shy of 10 million dollars. He faces one count of murder and another count of attempted murder. His arraignment has not been set.