Sat. Jul 20th, 2024

By Donna Westfall – June 15, 2017 – Mercy Ranger took the witness stand. The prosecuting attorney, Joyce Blair, led the witness like someone leading a horse to water, literally nodding her head to indicate the desired answer she wanted from Mercy.   Try to remember, Mercy, the oldest of the Ranger children is now 21 years old. Devoid of make-up the young lady looked like and acted like a wet dog coming in from the rain with her body shaking, with a sad, worried expression on her face and whispering while referring to her “girl parts,” like a 5 year old. Seeing her appearance on the witness stand was shocking because it was in direct contrast to the beautifully made up, confident person portrayed on her Facebook page.  She would rock back and forth on the chair, which I understand is something her younger sister did routinely.  She would not refer to Bryan Ranger as her father, only as her biological father.  She referred to Sasha and Earl Upton as her mother and father.  The Upton’s were the Ranger’s landlords and well off.

Let’s go over some of her testimony vs her brother’s testimony.  Since her brother is 17 years old and a minor, I will not use his name at this time even though his testimony was in open court.

Mercy Ranger:                                                             Her Brother:

The children were beaten.                                       We were spanked when we did something wrong, not beaten

There was a lock on the refrigerator                     Yes, there was a lock on the fridge because the little ones would get                                                                                           in and spill things

We were denied food, and ate mainly                   We ate mostly organic food, healthy food.  We were not denied food.

oatmeal and vegetables.

My father sexually abused me                                Our father never sexually abused any of us

I’m afraid of Bryan                                                    I’m not afraid of my father

Bryan yelled a lot and told us we would               My father did not yell or threaten us about burning in hell

burn in hell

I imagine a lot of the above can be proven or disproven through medical records; and as a matter of fact, Defense Attorney, William Cater brought up questions to Mercy as to why she did not report any instance of sexual abuse by her biological father on the many occasions there were mandated reporters… including teachers, doctors, social workers and more. Mercy claimed it was because her biological father told her not to speak out. Mercy stated that she didn’t start disclosing sexual abuse by her father until her stay with Erica Moore, a foster family in Crescent City. Then and only then everything surfaced, including journal/diary entries that look coached.

The biggest shocker of the day was her brother’s admission that he lied repeatedly from December, 2011 on to back up Mercy’s allegations, at the urging of Mercy with promises that he could go live with her.  He was being enticed by Mercy with a richer lifestyle. During testimony Mercy repeatedly emphasized how poor they were, at one time all living in a one bedroom house with no beds (motivation to escape that household at any cost).  She was made fun of for her “Amish” way of dressing. Her  brother admitted how guilty he feels now about lying about his father.  He said that he was threatened to lie by a cop he thinks may have been Ed Fleshman (clarified to be with the Del Norte County Sheriff’s Office). While he was attending Unchartered Shores Academy and about 11 or 12  years old, he stated that the threat happened when Fleshman took out a little knife. He was told by Fleshman that if he didn’t lie about his dad, the cop would stab himself and blame him. Then they would send him to juvenile hall.  It scared him enough at the time to continue lying. He realized later as he grew up, that the cop lied to him.

Of course the biggest pivot point of this case came when the prosecuting attorney asked if Mercy had sexual relations with Marcus “Marc” Nash, the son of Sasha and Earl Upton from the time she was 14 years old.  It seemed that several minutes went by before she finally answered, “Yes.”  Now, Attorney Joyce Blair knew about this affair since at least November 11, 2014 although the defense did not read about it until 2016.  Puzzling still is why no charges have been brought against Marc Nash.  Politics?  Corruption?

Getting back to Mercy was her repeated insistence that not only did she want to get out of the Ranger household, she was also concerned about her siblings safety.  But here’s the thing.  Mercy was mostly concerned with herself and staying with the Uptons.  Every time she thought she might be sent back home, she would up the ante on more and more charges of sexual abuse leveled against her father. Her concerns about her siblings safety contributed to Judge Follett terminating Bryan and Judy Ranger’s parental rights in 2013 without benefit of a trial. Mercy didn’t admit the affair with Marc Nash until late 2014, well after the time her siblings had been adopted out.

Also, hand drawn pictures supposedly drawn by Mercy and admitted into evidence by the prosecution looked like something  actually taken from “Fifty Shades of Grey,” the erotic romance novel by E.L. James.

Let’s look back over the timeline:

The Ranger’s moved into the Crescent City, “Creekside” home located on six acres with a horse in 2009.  Mercy writes in her diary she is very happy.

Mercy has an affair with Marc Nash who lived in the apartment above the garage around 2010 when she’s 14 years old  and he was over 40 years old which lasted a couple of years.

She kept the affair secret from her parents and she states she also kept it secret from Sasha Upton.

As this story unfolds, there appears more and more indicators that personal agendas have had a great influence on bringing this matter to trial.  In particular, a huge monetary intake by adopting out the kids, discrimination against the Ranger’s religious beliefs and lifestyle, and selectively prosecuting Bryan Ranger and not Marc Nash.









21 thoughts on “Day 2: Bryan Ranger “Sex Abuse” Trial”
  1. I was there when the girls were on the flatbed trailer in the 4 th of July parade.
    Judy and I were riding our bikes (not running)
    And Judy yelled softly ( I Love You)

  2. Mr. Ranger will not give his permission for Mercy to accept a gift
    from Marcus Nash. “It is inappropriate”,says Ranger. He is over 40
    and Mercy is 14.

    Unimpressed states, “When a 14 year old is involved sexually with a
    40 year old it’s rape not an “affair.”
    Beau feels the identified victim should be “afforded the respect of
    a victim of an alleged sexual abuse.”

    The court must protect the children. The court removes Mercy (for
    her safety)from the Ranger home and places her with the Mother of
    (according to Unimpressed) a sexual predator. Not only does Mr
    Ranger lose his parental rights, as Marcus Nash had threatened,
    Bryan Ranger’s rights have been given to the woman who raised the
    sexual predator. I would love to hear the courts infinite wisdom on
    how a young girl’s safety will be protected by giving parental rights
    to the biological mother of the very man who has been molesting her
    adopted daughter. Is there a restraining order on Marcus. Will
    Marcus be jailed for 4 years before he goes to trial for raping
    Mercy. Will Sasha be accused of aiding her son in sexual misconduct
    with a minor.

    Carlene White reported on a scene describing Judy Ranger running
    behind a flatbed truck screaming out to her daughters. White seemed
    upset because Judy was finding it difficult to let her minor children out of her
    sight. The way I think this could be looked at is to imagine those
    two girls as bear cubs and Judy is the mamma Grizzly Bear. If
    people took that mamma bears cubs, placed them on a wagon and took
    off in the opposite direction of mamma bear, what do you think that
    mamma Grizzly would do to get her cubs back? Anything!
    Last, who’s brilliant idea was it to put a child who is in
    psychological crisis in a psychiatric facility in Utah? Is this
    facility locked ? How in the world are any siblings going to be
    able to support their sister with frequent hugs and words of
    support. And if you do not think this affects the other children
    who are observing all the herky jerky nonsense going on around
    them. Well it does affect them. Simply because it does not make
    sense. Is there not a treatment center any closer to Del Norte
    County ? Why was Utah chosen? I want to hear Dr. McKellar
    explain the therapeutic value that this Hospital offers that this
    child cannot get at a facility closer to home. Did this psychosis
    come about after “the children got all their vaccinations”? How many
    vaccinations did they get over what period of time? Did the suicide
    attempts happen after the children’s family was demolished and they
    were given new homes and parents. Was the child who is in the
    Utah treatment facility placed there before or after she wanted to
    recant her testimony?

    Is my tax dollar paying for this child’s therapy? The community and I have
    a right to know this child is receiving appropriate treatment and there is
    some type of oversight to protect the Ranger children from being exploited,
    bullied or manipulated.

  3. ok “Unimpressed” you can keep your mouth shut because that is not a fact I am not a victim and I am not unfit for testifying! The only thing I am a victim of is being forced to lie about my father! And you’re such a Freaking coward that you can’t even put your name on here!

  4. I observed three basic things.

    One, I saw with my own eyes how Joyce Blair nodded her head to indicate the desired answer from Mercy. Beth Henion, please don’t tell me what I did or did not see with my own eyes.

    Second, Mr. Ranger was told before being charged that if he refused to forego his parental rights, he would be charged with allegations of sexual misconduct, and, that if he signed away his parental rights there would be no charges of sexual misconduct. That distinguishes illegal blackmail. Anyone who will forego charges in exchange for some specific thing is illegitimate.

    Third, the Rangers were poor and Mercy was highly motivated to be free of a very strict household. And there’s no physical evidence. To me, it is clearly possible that Mercy simply cannot confess to the world at this point that she made the allegations as a collateral leverage to gain the freedom she desperately wanted.

    If you reply, please try to refrain from personal attacks against me. Just the facts, ma’am.

    1. wes you said ypu observed Mr. Ranger was told before being charged that if he refused to forego his parental rights, he would be charged with allegations of sexual misconduct, and, that if he signed away his parental rights there would be no charges of sexual misconduct.

      you were actually there when he was told this or is this hearsay?

      1. Words came out of Brian Ranger’s mouth. The words were said to me. I heard the words. What Brian Ranger told me is he had been told that if he refused to sign away his parental rights he would be charged with sexual misconduct, and, that if he agreed to sign away his parental rights there would be no such allegations or charges of sexual misconduct.

        This is not verbatim, but the message conveyed was clear and to this effect. This was somewhere between 4 and 5 years ago. I mentioned it to an attorney who said it was extremely important testimony. I figured out some time later that threatening charges in this way is illegal, even criminal, blackmail. I’ve already provided a declaration to this effect under penalty of perjury to defense counsel and I’m fully prepared, if called upon, to testify.

        Arguably, it may be hearsay regarding whomever spoke the threat to Brian, but my testimony of what Brian told me is not hearsay.

        I believe it would be farfetched for anyone to speculate that Brian could possibly have anticipated such an illegal threat would be made and carried out in this way. I firmly believe that anyone who presses charges only if they don’t get what they want, but agrees not to press charges if they do get what they demand, is not a legitimate victim.

        1. Unfortunately those words from Brian Ranger ARE HEARSAY… and every criminal has a “I didn’t do it” story to tell..proof of that is at Pelican Bay State Prison…and we all know they are not in there for missing Sunday school….Unless Mr. Ranger’s Defense attorney starts demonstrating some compelling evidence that proves this man’s innocence…Mr. Ranger will be heading to prison…it is pretty unlikely that Ranger’s attorney is a magician..there will be no rabbits pulled out of this hat….

          1. Your interpretation of hearsay law is off. Testifying to what I witnessed is not hearsay. Nothing “unfortunate” about it. Your use of capitol letters doesn’t change the law.

            I’ll only testify to what I witnessed. I’ll leave weighing the evidence to the jury.

            And your facts are askew. Your theory supposes that Brian was not approached with the illegal threat of charges being brought unless he gave up parental rights. If you have evidence to support your theory, you should be offering to testify. Otherwise it just appears plain old bias. I’m hoping you won’t try to explain this by telling me Brian’s got some brilliant criminal master mind and anticipated precisely what would happen before it happened.

            Interesting you believe Brian is heading to prison unless he proves his innocence. My understanding is the prosecution has the burden of proof. I think your bias is showing.

  5. Facts: The boy victim was declared unfit for trail. Fact: Donna has been known him for years and even has him do campaign work for her collecting signatures. Fact: Donna has been giving him legal guidance and even helped him by filling out legal documents for him. That seems pretty bias to me.

    1. TO UNIMPRESSED: Facts: 1. The only “victim” that was unfit for trial was one of the Ranger daughters currently in an out-of-state mental hospital.
      2. I’ve known Mercy’s brother for about 2 years.
      3. I’m not an attorney, but I am considered a paralegal. I charge out my time at $275/hr and have been paid to be an expert witness in my specialty field as well as advise attorney’s including some of the local attorney’s.
      4. Mercy’s brother has legal rights as does every citizen in this county. He chose to exercise his legal rights.
      5. Mercy’s brother was allowed to collect signatures on the water/sewer rate protest under Proposition 218 and he got paid to do so.
      6. Mercy’s brother came to me for help in filling out Emancipation paperwork before he turned 16 years old. I told him he was not ready to be
      emancipated because a.) He didn’t have a job; b.) His grades in school were bad and had to be improved c.) He did not have a bank account and his adoptive mother would
      not open one for him. By the time he turned 17 he had all three of those requirements.

      1. wow Donna I did not know you were a paralegal. What school did you go to? I also did not know that attorney’s consulted with you..I am totally baffled. $275 per hour here? I guess I need to go back to school, or move.

        1. Wow $275 an hour and you don’t know the difference between attorneys and attorney’s. And then we have Sutter, Linda who copies your error and thinks that if . is good … must be better over and over. One of you wackos has him guilty beyond a doubt and the other innocent by the same measure… BEFORE the trial! Thank god it’s a jury of his peers who has the REAL, life changing, decision to make. They don’t call it short news for nothing!

          1. well isn’t that calling a kettle black?? i didn’t see you down here in the court house listening to the trial nor did i see you reading the file…BUT..YOU have an opinion…well…kudos…you know how to exercise your freedom of speech regardless that it is an uninformed opinion….apparently the only exercise you get is from pounding keys to show your meagerly existence..

            1. Linda the cliche you were searching for was “pot calling the kettle black”. I didn’t realize you were the OFFICIAL roll taker in the courtroom and the library. Since you don’t know me from Adam your reply is simply insane! Yes I did have an opinion and that was cases like this should be tried in court NOT in the “short bus news”!

  6. This is a very sad case Donna, and unfortunately, you are not doing yourself any favors by describing the victim as a wet dog…and you feel she was coached. Think about this. Everyday different people come to testify and the stories are all consistent with what has already been said…only a different face is telling the story…are you telling us that everyone of those people are lying??? I think not. Mr. Ranger and Judy Ranger should both be placed in prison never to see those children again. They are a danger to their children. Why Ms. Ranger was not prosecuted for failure to protect is beyond me. Yes and Marcus Nash needs to be dealt with as well.

    In the meantime, and although not ALL of the evidence has been prediction is Mr. Ranger will be locked up indefinitely…and while there, he will be taken care of by the inmates…I personally will not feel sorry for him because he has whatever happens to him in prison…he has it the meantime these children have suffered an eternity and are forever more scared….

    yet, you call Mercy a liar….she is not…

  7. I don’t believe that my 30 year friendship with anyone justifies your biased reporting of the Ranger Trial

  8. westfall has been snow balled by the rangers for years in fact ms westfall didn’t pick up on the fact the boy victim could not speak a entire sentence which indicated he was trying to cover up Brian rangers hideous acts. MS. westfall left the court room during a one hour video of the boy victim who was in a safe environment with a psychologist (which took place 4 years ago) where boy victim was able to speak normally without any stress and who conveyed the truth about the child molestation acts and beatings. This victim was in a safe relaxed atmosphere no pressure. This was very believable in contrast to his testimony yesterday. Ms. Westfall unfortunately does not have the wherewithal or education to understanding the difference and her credibility in reporting was and is biased.,To refer the female victim as a wet dog demonstrates westfalll juvenile immaturity and calculating behavior to place a twist that will undoubtedly fail.

  9. When a 14 year old is involved sexually with a 40 year old it’s rape not an “affiar.” You are piece of work Donna. You report with biased and not “accurately and fairly and honestly”. You should be banned from the court room for aiding in ruining children’s lives.

  10. You have a very biased way of reporting facts. I will not read your publication again. Because the reporters feelings about this trial should not be what she publishes. She also was not in front of the prosecution attorney and was unable to see what she described as leading the witness and nodding at the witness as she replied. I was in the front row watching this trail and did not see the things the reporter described. I believe she is reporting in a very biased manner. I’m glad no one has to pay to read her “stories” The reporter seems to be on the side of the defense instead of reporting the way she should, in a manner that is not partial to either side.

    1. I met Beth Henion’s son, Domingo at the Count Building for the first time just the other day. He informed me that Beth is best friends with Sasha Upton. Need I say more?

      1. Here’s my take. If there was a preliminary trial and there was enough evidence to hold Bryan Ranger over for trial, then the identified victim in the case should be afforded the respect of a victim of an alleged sexual abuse.

        Saying that the victim “looked like and acted like a wet dog coming in from the rain with her body shaking” isn’t okay or appropriate.

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