South Lake Tahoe bomb hoax leads to court for pair
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Court dates have been scheduled for two suspects involved last month in a hoax bomb scare near Emerald Bay.
Alana Blakemore and Hobie Gregory are alleged to have evaded law enforcement in an incident that ended with Gregory fleeing on foot and Blakemore threatening to detonate explosives on Highway 89.
Gregory, 24, was released from custody just days after the incident.
He is slated to appear in court for arraignment on Sept. 20, according to El Dorado County court records. Gregory is facing a charge of resisting arrest, a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum fine of $1,000, up to one year in a county jail or both, according to California’s penal code.
Blakemore, who authorities say was driving the vehicle that day, remains in custody on a felony charge of resisting an executive officer and misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest, according to jail records. The felony charge alone is punishable by a maximum fine of $10,000, up to one year in county jail or both, according to the penal code.
Blakemore, 21, is set to appear in court for a pre-preliminary hearing on Aug. 12, according to court records. Her total bail amount is $70,000.
The chaotic series of events on July 26 triggered a frightful evacuation of a California State Park in Emerald Bay, a sweep for explosives at a Raley’s grocery store and the arrest of two individuals with criminal records in the Carson Valley.
The FBI Las Vegas field office received a report that Blakemore was threatening to harm herself and others. The report was forwarded to a branch agency in Reno, where Blakemore was believed to be located, according to Sgt. Anthony Prencipe of the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office. The FBI contacted the Reno Police Department in an attempt to locate her.
Eventually members of an FBI task force notified the Carson City Sheriff’s Office that they were pursuing Blakemore’s vehicle, according to Jerome Tushbant, assistant sheriff with Carson City Sheriff’s Office.
The vehicle, a 2005 Mazda sedan, proceeded to head up Kingsbury Grade toward the Carson Valley. Elges said Douglas deputies barricaded the bottom of the grade at Foothill Road around 2 p.m. in anticipation of the vehicle making it over the pass.
However, Blakemore pulled a U-turn and headed back down Kingsbury Grade toward Tahoe. She then proceeded west on U.S. 50 into South Lake Tahoe, through the city and north on Highway 89.
Around 2:40 p.m., two state park rangers in Emerald Bay State Park were advised of the situation and that the vehicle was near their location. The rangers started following Blakemore’s vehicle and eventually tried to contact her.
Blakemore pulled the vehicle over on Highway 89, north of the parking lot for Vikingsholm.
Gregory is accused of running east off the highway and down the roadside slope toward Vikingsholm, which triggered a large scale manhunt in the area and eventually led to the parking lot being evacuated. Around 3:10 p.m. they evacuated the park.
At the scene, Blakemore had emerged from the vehicle with what appeared to be a device around her neck. Blackemore allegedly claimed it was a bomb and she threatened to blow herself up.
Sheriff’s deputies arrived and, with the goal of bringing her into custody, fired a bean bag at her, Prencipe said. The bean bag brought her down and park rangers and deputies moved in to arrest her.
She is accused of resisting arrest and claimed to have more explosives in the vehicle, which triggered a response by explosives experts from El Dorado and Douglas counties. The FBI and other law enforcement entities also arrived on the scene.
Gregory, who had fled on foot down the forested embankment, somehow made it to Baldwin Beach — a 5.5 mile trip by vehicle. From there he hitchhiked to Raley’s at the Y. A passerby had spotted Gregory and followed him to the grocery store.
South Lake Tahoe patrol officers and a SWAT team responded to Raley’s and located Gregory with the help of store staff and arrested him, according to police. Law enforcement searched the store and found no explosive devices.
At the scene on Highway 89 near Vikingsholm authorities determined there were no explosive devices in the vehicle. No weapons were found in the vehicle, according to Prencipe.
California State Parks has closed its investigation into the matter.
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