The strange case of the mystery enema
Even veteran police officers were dumbfounded by a difficult-to-classify act that may or may not have been a crime but which definitely did stretch the boundaries of the bizarre.
"You are not," premised Sonoma Police Sgt. Spencer Crum, "you are definitely not, going to believe this."
The story is brief but no less baffling.
On the afternoon of Sunday, May 1, a 53-year-old Sonoma man who is visually impaired - that is to say he could not see well, if at all - was standing in his apartment when a woman appeared in his doorway, unannounced and unexpected.
The woman told him she was there to give him an enema. Because the man had recently undergone intestinal surgery, he thought perhaps that explained her presence.
The woman deftly guided him to his bedroom, had him drop his pants and lie face down on his bed.
She then gave the man an enema and promptly left.
The whole episode took about a minute-and-a-half, he later told police. The woman did not leave a card or any other identifying information. And given the condition of his eyesight, the man did not, in the complete sense of the word, actually see her.
A day later, on Monday, the enema recipient began wondering about what had happened to him but took no action. By Tuesday, he felt compelled to shed some light on the experience, so he contacted police. An investigating officer promptly called the man's doctor and was told no enema had been prescribed, ordered or approved.
Sonoma police turned the case over to the domestic and sexual assault unit of the Sonoma Sheriff's Office who have yet to make sense of the caper.
It is well known that fatal enemas have been implicated in conspiracy theories surrounding the deaths of both Napoleon Bonaparte and Marilyn Monroe, but the victim of what may become known in crime annals and police academies across the country as "The Sonoma Enema," apparently reported no ill-effects from the treatment.
In other incidents reported to local law enforcement:
Thursday, April 21:
2:28 p.m. - Overlooked $6,800 charge. A Wood Valley Road resident was a little slow in reporting that someone had used his credit card number to run up charges totaling $6,836.46. The charges, it turned out, were incurred sometime between Feb. 3 and 16, 2010. The victim told deputies he didn't discover the fraudulent charges - which he had apparently paid for - until he was looking through his credit card statements while doing his taxes. When he called his credit card company he was told it was rather too late to report the theft and they were no longer reversible. The man told deputies that the charges were incurred in France, but that he had only used the card locally.
Sunday, April 24:
9:56 p.m. - Have meth, will travel. A deputy was called to the Vineyard Shopping Center in the 18900 block of Sonoma Highway on the report of a suspicions person. When the deputy arrived, he found no one suspicious, but began checking on surrounding streets for someone who might match the description. On Harley Street, the deputy found a man slumped over in the driver's seat of a pickup truck. As he approached, the deputy saw a propane torch nozzle and a smoking pipe in the bed of the truck. The deputy knocked on the window multiple times before the driver responded and told the deputy he had been at a casino and was tired. During a check of the man's identification, the deputy discovered the man was on probation - for five different counts. Among the terms of his probation was a search clause and a prohibition against use or possession of any illegal substances.
During a search of the man's person the deputy discovered a plastic bag of methamphetamine, and a later drug exam showed he was under the influence.
Artemio Herrera, 41, of Vallejo, was arrested on charges of felony possession of a controlled substance, being under the influence of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and a probation violation.
Friday, April 29:
10:50 a.m. - Unlocked mower lost. The custodian of Arnold Field told police that an electric lawn mower and charging unit had been stolen from an unlocked shed at the edge of the playing field. The Husqvarna electric push mower was valued at $450.
Thursday, May 5:
8:30 p.m. - Vicious, senseless attack. A 65-year-old woman, walking home with her dog on Patten Street at Second Street East, was shoved to the ground from behind by a group described by police as white males in their 20s who laughed and ran away. The woman sustained facial injuries but did not see her assailants, who seemed bent on nothing more than vicious assault on a helpless woman. Police are continuing their investigation.
Saturday, May 7:
10:18 p.m. - A lynching and a huge man. A drunken melee among out-of-town tourists at a rented vacation home on Newcomb Street resulted in three arrests for public intoxication and resisting arrest, along with one charge of lynching. There were, however, no bodies dangling from trees, but one "extremely intoxicated" woman who facilitated the escape from a patrol car of another "extremely intoxicated woman," thus achieving what, in police parlance, is called a lynching.
According to police, the loud and drunken behavior at the residence aroused neighbors, who contacted the property owner, who rushed to the home and confronted the celebrants, one of them being a 6-foot, 4-inch "huge man" who was also extremely drunk. The property owner reportedly punched the "huge man" in the stomach and then left.
As police attempted to subdue the parties involved, they placed one woman in handcuffs and put her in a patrol car. Then, while they attempted to subdue the huge man, who was resisting their efforts, the remaining woman opened the patrol car door and helped the cuffed woman get out.
In the end, all three were subdued, arrested and booked into the county jail. That included a 33-year-old Sacramento man, a 34-year-old Huntington Beach woman, Josephine Quiocho - who was also booked on the felony charge of lynching - and a 30-year-old San Francisco woman.