Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Johnny Bonta: The Story So Far

Since my earlier post about the recent Johnny Bonta incident in Fernley, Nevada, the incident has attracted increasing attention in the blogosphere, with mentions in Forbes, Raw Story and the Daily Kos.  (Credit is due to Brenda Norrell of Censored News, who broke this story a month before it went viral and whose work has all too often been cut-and-pasted without attribution). Many Burners who will be passing through Lyon County on their way to the Playa have vowed to boycott Fernley businesses: others feel a boycott would just punish innocents and be counter to the Burning Man spirit of peace, love and general tolerance.

As public outrage mounts, it is likely that many who have chimed in online will want to edit or erase their comments.  Hence, I have started saving screen captures against that eventuality.  The comments from Leo Mayfield, brother of alleged assailant Joshua Ryan Mayfield Janiszewski, can be found here.  I have also saved copies of these comments from a woman claiming to be Dee Cassell, the mother of purported "skinhead" Jacob Cassell.
I am truly trying to stay out of this until the investigation is done - I won't comment on the fight just want to clarify for myself. I asked "who has blood" on fb cause I wanted to know which boy was hurt & wanted them to come to my house house for 1st aid. Why? Cause they all agreed the EMT's needed to go check out the Bontas, even though blood was running down his face. He refused treatment. As far as losing their car, it was towed cause of no insurance,no registration & it wouldn't start after hitting the other car. TY! 
I am trying to refrain from commenting until after the investigation but I will also clarify myself. I posted on fb "who got blood" cause I wanted to know which boy was hurt & who needed to come to my house for 1st aid. Why? Cause Jacob refused 1st aid, everyone thought the Bontas should be looked at 1st. That's where my familys heart comes from. And the Bontas car was towed because of no insurance, no registration and it wouldn't start again after it hit the other car. There was also only 1 Native present - Bontas wife, step-daughter and son-in-law are all white. And Shane - shame on you - sorry you lost your parents!
If this is indeed Dee Cassell and she is providing an accurate description of the events, this suggests that even Cassell, Janiszewski and Unidentified Young White Male #3 felt that Bonta needed medical attention after the fight.  Jacob, in fact, was so concerned about Bonta's welfare that he refused aid. Yet the Lyon County Sheriff's Office refused him access to medical attention for six days, even turning away what one jail guard disparagingly called "his Indian doctor" from the reservation.

And as an added twist to this drama, here's a December 7, 1997 article in the Las Vegas Sun which has Dee Cassell booked on 17 counts of embezzlement involving a total of $187,817 and three counts of fraudulent use of a credit card involving a total of $29,360. Because of her husband's role on the sheriff's department, the Nevada Division of Investigations was called in.  It is unclear how this was resolved, as Lyon County's court records do not appear to be accessible online.  But it is interesting to note that, despite many claims to the contrary, I could find no prior or current arrest records for Johnny Bonta.