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Press Release: February 13, 2018
Dan A. Howe, Special Prosecutor for the Lassen County District Attorney’s Office, announced today in the case of the People of the State of California v. Arik Baker the defendant plead guilty to four felony counts with a stipulated sentence of 61 years to life. Included in the plea was a waiver of any right to appeal. Mr. Howe recognizes the bravery and resilience of the survivor. “The reason we achieved such an excellent result (in this case) was because of the survivor’s strong commitment to justice.” Additionally, Mr. Howe would like to thank the Lassen County Sheriff’s Office for an excellent, professional investigation with a special acknowledgement of Sergeant John McGarva and Deputy Laura Johnson.
Forty-nine year old Arik Baker plead guilty to two felony counts of the crime of Sexual Penetration of a Child 10 years old or younger in violation of California Penal Code Section 288.7(b) resulting in two consecutive terms of 15 years to life in state prison. The defendant also plead guilty to Continuous Sexual Abuse, in violation of California Penal Code Section 288.5(a), defined as three or more acts of “substantial sexual conduct” with a child under the age of 14 years resulting in an additional term of 16 years. Baker plead guilty to Aggravated Sexual Assault of A Child, in violation of Penal Code 269(a) (1), where the defendant was 7 or more years older than the child, and the child is under the age of 14, where he committed Rape, resulting in an additional term of 15 years to life. Sentencing is scheduled for April 16, 2018 at 9:00AM at the Hall of Justice.
The Lassen County District Attorney’s Office would like to encourage individuals who have experienced any sexual assault to please report the incident to law enforcement. Delayed disclosure of sexual assault is normal. The extraordinary disposition in this case is because a survivor spoke out. You too deserve to be heard, respected and for the crime to be investigated.
From your District Attorney: I am pleased to provide the opportunity for the citizens of Lassen County to learn more about the District Attorney's Office and clarify our role and responsibilities. As your District Attorney, my duty is to protect all citizens of the county by justly and fairly prosecuting those who threaten our safety. The positive reputation my office has developed since I was elected is one that I am proud of, particularly through the effective prosecution of violent criminals, "three strikers", sexual predators, and other violators. I am a strong supporter of my staff, a team of dedicated attorney’s and professionals committed to the mission and vision of our office.
Other than the prosecution of crime in the county, did you know of the different type of work and various programs our office provides the community? The District Attorney’s Office is responsible for: Prison Prosecution, Criminal Investigation, Asset Forfeiture, Public Record Requests, presentations to the public about the DA office and the Adult Criminal Justice System and community outreach designed toward the prevention of domestic violence, child abuse, and other senseless crimes. One of our many goals for the future includes an intervention and diversion program designed to give new opportunities to early, non-serious criminal and drug-addicted offenders. Moreover, I am proud of the efforts of the Victim Witness staff that work closely with crime victims to help guide them from victim to survivor. Please take a look at our Victim Witness website for more information on this valuable program.
I appreciate your interest and look forward to your input as to how our office may better serve you. We appreciate the community’s input, so please feel free to share your kudos and/or concerns via our email at: LassenDA@co.lassen.ca.us. We will respond as soon as possible. Thank you for visiting! --Stacey Montgomery
Click here to participate in a Community Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HH9PVSQ
Did you know?
The District Attorney's authority is independent of other local law enforcement agencies.
Doug Wilber, Chief Investigator
Our District Attorney Investigator, Doug Wilber, performs various types of investigations including investigations not handled by other local law enforcement agencies as stipulated by the District Attorney to improve the administration of justice. Some of the investigator's job duties include investigations targeted by the state, investigations to assist the operation of county departments or programs, homicide response and assistance in trial preparation. Investigators from the District Attorney's Office are part of the critical incident response team and can be called out when an incident involving the use of "lethal force" by a peace officer occurs. DA Investigators are also called upon to conduct investigations into suspected misconduct by government officials, public employees or local agencies.
Currently, the department is funded to employ one Senior Investigator (a Junior Investigator position is allocated but not funded). Rest assured, all Lassen County District Attorney Investigator's working in the Bureau of Investigations are sworn California Peace Officers as defined in Section 830.1 of the California Penal Code.