Man dies during Calif. pot cleanup
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California outdoorsman who led crews of volunteers through the Sierra Nevada mountains repairing trails and cleaning up marijuana grow sites has died after falling 50 feet from a helicopter, authorities said.
Shane Krogen was to be lowered in a harness to a remote cleanup site in Sequoia National Forest when he fell Thursday morning, said Lt. Patrick Foy of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
“Everyone else had used it, too,” Foy said about the harness. Foy was at the scene but did not see the fall.
The helicopter was flown by the California National Guard 129th Air Rescue Wing.
Krogen, 57, of Fresno was the founder and executive director of the High Sierra Trail Crew, a group that has worked with the fish and wildlife agency since 2008 and Forest Service since 1995 to remove trash and contaminants from illegal and remote marijuana gardens.
Krogen and some of his crew were among a handful of volunteers trained to be airlifted and lowered into difficult terrain.
“They were trained by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and the military,” Foy said. “We just don't know what happened yet.”
Fair weather and remote terrain have lured scores of people to establish illegal marijuana grow sites across the Sierra Nevada wilderness in recent years.
They dam streams and spray pesticides and rodenticides, many that are banned. They leave behind tons of trash from campsites that are occupied during the five-month growing season.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Boehner acknowledges early House GOP ‘stumbles’
- Pentagon puts ‘fork’ in news about ex-captive Bergdahl
- Dems delay Iran sanctions proposal
- Wisconsin’s Walker takes first step toward possible run in 2016
- Slain Ga. couple known for charity projects
- Democrats, Republicans openly snipe about congressional Benghazi investigation
- Thieves go for the gold in San Francisco
- House sales tax proposal criticized as attack on states’ rights
- Senate on track to approve Keystone XL by week’s end
- New York legislative Speaker Silver to give up position because of federal corruption charges
- Drone owner still unnamed, works for intelligence agency