Friday, December 9, 2022

Man Charged with Arson Causing Ukiah Structure Fire Reportedly Used Accelerant to Fuel the Flames

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Travis Joseph Humphrey [Mugshot from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Booking Logs]

On the evening of December 2, 2021, multiple fire agencies responded to a structure fire on Ukiah’s Gibson Street that left the first floor of a residence charred with minimal damage to the second story.

Investigations that evening concluded that the fire was an act of arson and 31-year-old Redwood Valley Man Travis Joseph Humphrey was arrested for the crime.

Ukiah Police Department Lieutenant Andrew Phillps told MendoFever that investigators determined Humphrey had “poured an accelerant onto his mattress and left [the residence] just prior to the fire being noticed.” When officers contacted Humphrey that evening, Lieutenant Phillips said an accelerant was found on his person.

Firefighters on scene of Thursday night’s structure fire [Pictures by Matt LaFever]

The fire occurred at 150 Gibson Street, a two-story residence associated with a Redwood Community Services behavioral health/sober-living facility. Humphrey was a tenant at the facility, as confirmed by Lieutenant Phillips.

Humphrey has an extensive criminal record within the Mendocino County community, as documented in Ukiah Police Department logs other local periodicals. 

A Northern Mendocino County arrest report published by The Willits News on January 5, 2015, indicated that Humphrey petitioned to be released from a stint at the Mendocino County Jail after the passage of Proposition 47. At that time, he was serving a 24-month sentence for petty theft involving three or more prior convictions and with the passage of Prop 47 he was “eligible for 50 percent credit.”

Travis Joseph Humphrey in the Mendocino County Sheriff Booking Logs in 2015, courtesy of the AVA

As per the Anderson Valley Advertiser on July 5, 2015, Humphrey reportedly “jumped onto the hood of a security patrol vehicle while the security guard was seated in the vehicle, causing over $1,000 in damage to the vehicle’s hood.”

The AVA also recounted a previous episode to the Walmart parking lot debacle in which Humphrey “walked into a shoe store, urinated on the floor, and strolled out in a new pair of boots he hadn’t paid for.”

Ukiah Police Department logs curated by MendoFever detail a litany of police encounters involving Humphrey over the last few, recent months:

  • On November 7, 2021, Humphrey was arrested for public intoxication after riding a neon green bike through a store. 
  • On November 2, 2021, Humphrey was reportedly booked and released after alleged trespassing and probation violations.
  • On September 22, 2021, Humphrey was arrested with another for public intoxication.
  • On September 6, 2021, Humprey was reportedly found lying in front of a laundromat in Ukiah after reports emerged a “transient male was just kicking other male in the head.” Humphrey claimed to respond to officers he was “acting in self-defense.”

The Anderson Valley Advertiser’s coverage of Humphrey’s 2015 crimes could offer perspective on the larger context of Humphrey’s behavior: “We’ve come to a sad pass in this country when the mentally disabled are allowed, nay even encouraged, to live on the streets, menacing the vulnerable, destroying public space for everyone.”

The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Booking Logs indicate that Humphrey still sits behind bars facing charges of arson during a state of insurrection and arson of inhabited structures or property.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Oh boy when’s Ukiahs “elected” idiots gonna wake up. Build some more homeless shelters. Give them more free stuff. What could go wrong.

  2. I should say no one is encouraged to be sober or held accountable. Managers there literally dont even mention those things and just try to keep it quiet.

  3. Folks can just go on meth binges and make things totally unsafe for other clients as well as staff and it’s not even mentioned by management. As a matter of fact they do everything they can to keep staff from raising concerns.

    • I’m so glad you choose to say something bc nothing will ever change here we thinking that these places are helping our loved ones in reality its hindering them, I was just talking about this a few months ago. My grandsons mom in 60 days rehab or go back to jail for second time around, she got kicked out for fighting just short of 2 months while others trying to heal n she didn’t even go back to jail, tbats like a slap in the face to the judge n families involved. Probation never said or did anything.. why even pass test n violate nothing happens ever, my poor grandson will be the one to suffer, he said he wants his mom to live at my house so she has to follow the rules, he also his under the table crying bc he said she tells him to lie to me, ITS A DAM JOKE, YOUR THE REAL DIAMOND TO THE COMMUNITY KEEP BEING YOU, HONEST

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I like to think of myself as a journalist for the everyman. Journalism has become a craft practiced largely by the urban elite. It’s time to take it back. I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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