TS - EPD reportedly didn't follow up on 1999 rape report

Jane Doe 2 testified Monday at Blue Lake Police Chief David Gundersen's preliminary hearing that she reported to the Eureka Police Department in 1999 that Gundersen raped her, but the department never followed up on the claims.

Under the questioning of District Attorney Paul Gallegos, Doe testified that Gundersen forcibly raped her in March 1999 while they were living together with plans of marrying. Doe said she reported the rape to both a local advocacy group and EPD.

Doe testified that she contacted EPD because she knew Gundersen's then wife worked at the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office, which would have had jurisdiction over the alleged McKinleyville rape, and she consequently feared the department would not follow up on her report.

A Computer Aided Dispatch call record contained in Gundersen's court file, indicates that Doe called EPD at about 2:30 p.m. on March 26, 1999. Len Johnson, now a lieutenant with the department, spent about 45 minutes with Doe, according to the record, but did not file a report.

In testimony Monday, Doe said Johnson told her he would follow up on the matter.

”He said at the very least his chief would talk to then-Chief Gundersen, and they would investigate it,” Doe testified, adding that she never heard back from EPD on the matter.

A District Attorney's Office Investigation Report in Gundersen's file indicates that Chief Investigator Mike Hislop contacted Johnson and asked him about Doe's call.

”He reviewed the (Computer Aided Dispatch) report and could not recall any specifics or what (Doe) had contacted him about,” the report states.

Johnson declined to comment for this story, saying the subject is part of an ongoing case in which he expects to be subpoenaed to testify.

EPD reportedly didn't follow up on 1999 rape report
John Driscoll and Thadeus Greenson The Times-Standard
Article Launched: 04/22/2008 01:27:30 AM PDT

John Driscoll can be reached at 441-0504 or jdriscoll at times-standard.com and Thadeus Greenson can be reached at 441-0509 or tgreenson at times-standard.com.

Related coverage, with links