Police Arrest Man Who Returns to General Dynamics Despite 3 Warnings

Healdsburg police arrest 27-year-old Santa Rosa man on trespassing charges.


A 27-year-old Santa Rosa man was arrested by Healdsburg police for trespassing on the grounds of General Dynamics one day after he was warned for the third time to stay away.

Benjamin Lash was taken into custody by Healdsburg police officers Ian Benner and Tom Whitemore after they responded to an 11:35 a.m. call on Wednesday, Oct. 17 at the Healdsburg high-tech drone manufacturer's offices on Grove Street.

Whitemore said the call to police came from company officials, who were alerted that Lash was present on the grounds by three witnesses. Lash was gone by the time police arrived, but police found him a block away and arrested him, Whitemore said.

Lash had , that if he appeared again at the company grounds he would be taken into custody. That was as he was ejected from the company's parking lot after witnesses said he was allegedly knocking on windows, trying to get workers to let him in.

Healdsburg Det. Nick Casteneda said at the time that Tuesday's incident was the third warning given to Lash about staying away from the firm.

Lash was booked in Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of simple trespassing, according to Whitemore.  He was released with a citation to appear for a hearing in Sonoma County Superior Court.

At Tuesday's incident, Casteneda said Lash was described as an ex-employee of General Dynamics who had been recently laid off. Whitemore, however, said Monday that company officials told him Lash had not been a regular full-time employee, but had been on loan to the firm from another business.

Lash's relationship to General Dynamics was not immediately clear. The company's public contact telephone number was disconnected on Monday and personnel officials could not be reached for comment.

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