Henthorne family member speaks out against Pata family

May 6, 2014 7:50 PM

A member of the Henthorne family, a family whose name was listed as “suspended” by the Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians, is expressing relief after the tribe has cleared her family's name from the tribal shakeup at Rolling Hills Casino.

Wendy Barrera is a Henthorne and Corning resident. She tells Action News Now she’s tired of the Henthorne name swirling around in the media, hearing it over and over. She wants it to be known that she, nor the last remaining members of the Henthorne family, had anything to do with the tribal shakeup at Rolling Hills Casino.

“We are not members of the Paskenta Band,” Barrera said. “We never were, but yet our last name is put out there like we had a hand in this, and it's not true.”

At her home in Corning, Barrera explained how the Henthorne's were never allowed in the tribe, because they never had lineal ties to the tribe. They're tied to the Round Valley Tribe in Covelo, California.

But she said the Pata, Crosby, and Lohse families used the Henthorne name to get into the Paskenta Nomlaki Tribe.

She said they thought they had a link to Ben Henthorne, who she said had an indirect link to the Paskenta Tribe.

“If they want to be proud of who they are they should have just stuck with being a family and going out there and getting what they wanted,” Barrera said.

She said they wanted power and greed, and got it.

“They ruined a lot of lives with this money, with the power they had,” Barrera said. “Anybody with an opinion or a question, they got rid of.”

She believes the Pata family even viewed her as a threat, saying she was turned down at the Rolling Hills Clinic sometime last year.

Barrera said she sees justice being served since the tribal shift on April 12th.

But more than anything, she's happy to clear the Henthorne name, doing it for her father, Everett Henthorne.

“I have to be true to who I am and to who my dad was,” Barrera said.

The Paskenta Band's new tribal treasurer, Ambrosia Rico, confirms that as of last night, the Henthorne family name has been cleared of any wrongdoing.

Action News Now also received word from the Tribe's new PR firm that findings from an initial internal audit has revealed the Pata family embezzled more than a million dollars to purchase luxury cars and a mansion, and wrote checks to each other from tribal accounts. They say some of those checks amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars.


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