On the evening of Saturday, November 6, 2021, 29-year-old Jennifer Nicole Bair was found inside a Hendy Woods State Park rental cabin near Philo that a visiting family had already reserved. California State Parks Chief Ranger Loren Rex described a dramatic turn of events born from Bair’s discovery that would end with Bair at gunpoint and finally booked into the Mendocino County jail.
Ranger Rex told us that when Bair was located within the rental cabin, a brief incident occurred in which Bair reportedly “yelled derogatory things” at the family. After the verbal exchange, Bair is said to have left the cabin area driving her van. The visiting family contacted State Parks Rangers and informed them of what occurred.
One of the rangers on staff noticed Bair’s vehicle driving through the park and conducted a traffic stop. Ranger Rex told us the officer started talking to her and she initially complied with his orders when suddenly she started the car and proceeded to drive away.
The ranger was able to catch up and for a second time to conduct a traffic stop. But, predictably, quickly after she stops, Bair reportedly takes off again, for a total of three separate times that she evaded a law enforcement officer, Ranger Rex told us.
At this point, her behaviors initiated protocols associated with a “high-risk vehicle stop,” Ranger Rex explained. After failing to comply with demands to put her hands outside the van’s window, the responding rangers held Bair at gunpoint until they were successfully able to extract her from the vehicle and take her into custody.
Bair was booked into the Mendocino County jail as a result of this incident facing charges including resisting or obstructing a police officer, evading a peace officer, and petty theft. Ranger Rex could not provide what it is exactly that Bair stole that would warrant the petty theft charge. Records in the MCSO Booking Logs indicate she was bailed out the following day.
With due respect to the potential victims of the circumstances described, it must be stated that the charges contained in the booking log have not been proven in a court of law. In accordance with the legal principle of the presumption of innocence, any individual described should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.