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Old November 13th 12, 12:54 PM posted to,,,alt.lawyers,soc.culture.usa
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Default Timeline on Goodall Estate Case October 2010 to July 2011

Timeline on Mike Goodall Case

October 5, 2010 Mike Goodall dies in his home at 461 Peachstone
Terrace, San Rafael California 94903, which is in the Marinwood
District. His still warm body is found on the floor next to his bed by
Roy Hoppe who had just come home. Medics are called but Mike is long
dead by the time they arrive.
It happens that I am in Khanty-Mansiysk Siberia Russia on the day when
Mike Goodall dies. I post an article on the Internet dated October 5,
2010 entitled “Olympiad Hotel in Khanty-Mansiysk is Closing Right
Now”. My article starts: “The Olympiad Hotel in Khanty-Mansiysk is
Closing Right Now. I am the last guest to leave.” Several days pass
before I learn that Mike Goodall has died.
November 26, 2010 I post an obituary of Mike Goodall on the Internet
entitled “Tragedy of the USCF”.
December 18, 2010 Another tragedy strikes when my daughter Jessica
aged 22 dies in New York City of Neisseria meningitidis a disease she
contracted from another patient in the Emergency Room of a major
hospital. I have to pay for her mother, brother and sisters to come to
New York to attend her funeral, as none of the other family members
have money. Jessica is finally buried in Lynchburg Virginia on January
10, 2011. This results in a delay of my return to California.
January 15, 2011 I fly on Delta Airlines from New York to San
January 16, 2011 I return to the Goodall Mansion located at 461
Peachstone Terrace, San Rafael California 94903. I find that the
electricity and water has been turned off and the garbage is no longer
being collected, but Roy Hoppe is still living there sleeping on the
couch. Hoppe informs me that a lawyer named James R. Hastings has
“ordered” him to vacate the Goodall house by the end of January. Frank
Thornally has already moved out.
January 17, 2011 I attend a graveside funeral and burial service for
Mike Goodall at Valley Memorial Park in Novato, California arranged by
Frank Thornally. Only Frank Thornally and myself attend.
Frank Thornally, a religious man, has paid for the funeral out of his
own pocket because James R. Hastings has taken all the money Mike
Goodall left in his bank accounts.
After the funeral service, I ask to see the documents in the case.
Back at the Goodall Mansion, Frank Thornally hands me a stack of
documents which he says he has not had time to look through. Almost
immediately I discover the original last will and testament of Mike
However, James R. Hastings has informed Frank and Roy that the will is
ineffective because everything goes to Guide Dogs for the Blind. Any
small amounts of money left by Mike will not be enough to cover the
legal fees of Hastings. Therefore, Hastings has ordered Frank and Roy
to turn all funds over to him and to vacate the premises by the end of
After reading the documents that I have been able to find, I realize
that this is not the case at all. The trust documents clearly show
that Guide Dogs for the Blind only get the estate if Mike dies before
his parents do. Since his father died in 1994 and his mother died in
1999 but Mike did not die until 2010, everything goes to Mike and his
heirs and nothing goes to Guide Dogs for the Blind, according to the
January 28, 2011 I file the original will of K. Michael Goodall in
Marin County Superior Court.
January 31, 2011 Roy Hoppe moves out of the house where he has
resided since 1998 because because of threats by James R. Hastings and
Russell Blair of Bank of America to have him arrested if he does not
move out. However, I stay in the house since there is no order of
eviction and no legal authority for me to be forced to leave the
house. Frank Thornally has previously moved out.
February 1, 2011 – I file a petition in Probate in the Marin County
Probate Court in San Rafael California and a request to be appointed
Administrator of the Estate. Case Number is PRO 1100596. A hearing is
set for March 7, 2011 in Marin County Probate Court
February 7, 2011 I receive a call from a Trust Officer for Bank of
America in Dallas Texas named Russell Blair who says he is in charge
of the Goodall Family Trust. I tell him in no uncertain terms that
there are items in the house of immense value including artwork,
antiques, furniture, etc. plus clothing and personal items belonging
to myself, Roy Hoppe, Frank Thornally, Mike Goodall and other chess
players and that the Bank of America would be in "heap big trouble" if
they tried to evict us and remove this stuff from the house without
court order.
I also inform Russell Blair that this case is pending before the Marin
County Probate Court and he would be in serious trouble if he tries to
take action against the estate or against us while the matter is
I cannot live in the house as there is no electricity, water or heat,
so I leave the house and go out of town feeling confident that Russell
Blair or his agents would not try to break into and enter the house
while I am away. Only Roy Hoppe and myself have a key to the house.
March 1, 2011 I return and find the house has been broken into. There
is nothing inside the house except for an issue of the San Francisco
Chronicle dated February 28, 2011. I discover that my key to the house
no longer works. The locks to the doors have been changed. I call Roy
Hoppe who, as far as I knew, was the only other person with a key to
the house and find that his key no longer works either.
I thereafter try all the doors and windows. I discover that a small
window in the back of the house had been left unlocked. I am certain
that this window was not previously left unlocked. I crawl in through
that window, thereby regaining access to the house. I discover that
the entire house had been emptied of its contents. All of the
furniture and fixtures, art work, paintings, etchings, and even
personal mail, signed original legal documents, bank statements,
personal checkbooks, family photos and photo albums, financial
accounting and everything else had been taken. Since nobody else other
than myself and Roy Hoppe had a right to be in that house and since we
had both resided there since 1998, it was obvious that the house had
been a victim of a burglary.
Later I go down the street to a neighbor who had known Mike Goodall
since childhood and ask for his help. He comes to the house and helps
me remove the locks to the doors. I take the locks to Jackson Hardware
in San Rafael and they re-key the locks and made new keys for the
After that, I have had the only key to the house. However, I have been
letting Roy Hoppe in any time he wants. At the moment, we are not
living in the house because all of the furniture including beds,
tables and chairs had been removed by the burglars. I plan to move
back in as soon as I recover adequate furniture for living there.
After discovering that the house had been burgled, I call 911 to
report the burglary. Deputy Anthony Savas of the Marin County
Sheriff's Department responds to the call. Deputy Savas tells me that
he regularly patrols the neighborhood and a few days earlier he had
observed “a Spanish Guy” with a dumpster who was removing the contents
of the house. As this had seemed to be a routine case of somebody
moving out, he had not stopped to inquire. Deputy Savas takes my
report of a burglary and also speaks to Roy Hoppe on the telephone
about this case.
I receive a call from Jacquel Hutchings of Bank of America in Dallas
Texas who informs me that she has taken over the case from Russell
Blair, who has quit the case. She asks about my petition filed in the
Marin County Probate Court and particularly about the property listed
in the petition, which is the house at 461 Peachstone Terrace. I
inform her that this is estate property. She says that accordingly
Bank of America has hired an attorney Gary Rothstein to represent Bank
of America in this case.
March 4, 2011 I receive the first of many emails from Gary Rothstein,
attorney for Bank of America. He objects to my probate petition,
claiming that the house is not the property of the Goodall Estate and
belongs to the Goodall Trust. He demands that I withdraw the petition
in Probate I have filed in Marin County Probate Court. He also objects
to my appointment as Administrator of the Estate. I reply that as all
the Goodalls are dead now, the Goodall Trust by its terms is
terminated. Thus, all the property is in the Goodall estate.
I thereafter call Dean Ross, Probate examiner in Marin County, and
inform him that Bank of America has hired an attorney, Gary Rothstein,
to appear in this case. Dean Ross expresses surprise that Bank of
America would appear in such a small case.
March 7, 2011 A hearing is held in Marin County Probate Court. Judge
Verna Adams says that she cannot proceed until Bank of America has
been served with notice. Bank of America has already called the court
to inquire as to the status of the case. I question the need for
service on Bank of America as they are not involved in the case and
already know about it anyway. Nevertheless, Judge Adams rules that
Bank of America must be served. The case is continued until March 21,
2011 to give time to serve Bank of America and for Bank of America to
appear in the case. I also need to obtain consents and waivers from
Frank Thornally and Roy Hoppe for me to be appointed administrator of
the Estate.
March 8-20, 2011 Gary Rothstein and Sam Sloan engage in frumious
exchanges of emails. Sloan demands to know who and by what authority
the house at 461 Peachstone Terrace was broken into. Rothstein says
that Bank of America will allow anybody who can prove that they own a
particular item to go to Alameda to pick up that item. Sloan replies
that this is all nonsense as it was illegal to break into the Goodall
Mansion and he has called the police, reported the burglary and wants
all bank officials involved in this arrested.
March 21, 2011 Bank of America has been served and consents and
waivers have been obtained from Frank Thornally and Roy Hoppe, so a
hearing is held before Probate Judge Verna Adams and Sam Sloan
appointed Administrator of the Goodall Estate with Will Annexed.
March 23 to April 4, 2011 More exchanges of emails between Sam Sloan
and Gary Rothstein. Rothstein says Bank of america is refusing to
return the stuff tio the Goodall House but if the former residents of
the house provide a list of the property they are claiming and proof
that they own the property Bank of America will allow them to pick up
the property in Alameda. Sloan replied that thjis is nonsense as the
house was the victim of a burglary and all property must be returned.
Sloan informs Rothstein that Mike Goodall often said that he might be
the father of a child, since he had a brief relationship with a woman
in 1974 who subsequently gave birth. If Mike is the real father, then
the child gets everything, of course.
Rothstein demands that Sloan turn over the keys to the house. Sloan
Another relative, Beth Perry, an aunt of Mike Goodall, writes to
Rothstein and claims some of the property that was in the Goodall
Shanti Onofre, the mother of Jessica, the child of Sam Sloan who had
died, and who had several times visited Sloan in the Goodall Mansion,
and who lives in Alameda, goes to Michaan's Auction House in Alameda
and discovers Mike Goodall's personal items such as furniture, chess
sets, chess books and other items clearly belonging to Mike Goodall
all boxed, tagged and on display, ready to be sold at a subsequent
April 21, 2011 Sam Sloan goes to Michaans' Auction House to
investigate, on the pretext of attending another auction. It is a huge
auction house on the former US Naval Base. The building appears to be
a former aircraft hanger or dry dock for ships. There is a sign
outside saying “Estate Auctions”. The door was open as various
customers were viewing the stuff. I entered and before long I saw a
box filled with tournament chess sets and roll up tournament chess
boards. Since Mike Goodall was the largest chess tournament organizer
in Northern California, I immediately realize that this must be his
stuff. I take photographs of it.
April 21, 2011 Bank of America files a petition in San Francisco
Probate Court claiming to be the Trustee of the Goodall Trust and
demanding that all trust assets including the House at 461 Peachstone
Terrace be donated to a charity, Guide Dogs for the Blind, Inc. The
petition filed by Bank of America makes no mention of the extensive
legal proceedings that have already taken place over this property in
Marin County Probate Court. The petition of Bank of America is
essentially a collateral attack on the order of the Marin County
Probate Court which among other things authorized Sam Sloan as
administrator of the Goodall estate to sell the Goodall Property. Bank
of America files it under an old case number PTR 99-273030 which Mike
Goodall had filed back in 1999 to contest the claim by Bank of America
to be the trustee of the trust but which had never been finally
decided. Bank of America gives a different name to the case, calling
it “In the Matter of the Trust for Michael Created under the Goodall
Trust dated September 12, 1990”. However, the real name of the case is
“In The Goodall trust”. Hearing is set for May 25, 2011.
Subsequently, Sam Sloan is served with the petition by Bank of
America, bringing him into the case.
May 13, 2011 Since efforts to get Bank of America to return the
stolen Goodall property have proven futile, Sam Sloan files a petition
under Section 850 of the Probate Code for recovery of property of the
Goodall Estate and of other people living in Mike Goodall's house,
naming as respondents Hamilton Kipp, an official of Bank of America,
and Michaans Auction House. Hearing is set for June 2011.
Learning that the Goodall Property is scheduled tio be auctioned off
by Michaans Auction House on March 25, 2011, Sam Sloan files a motion
for a time shortening order so that the 850 motion can be heard before
the Goodall stuff can be auctioned off.
March 20, 2011 A hearing is held before Commissioner Harvey E.
Goldfine on the motion for a time shortening order. As Bank of America
fails and refuses to appear, Commission Goldfine calls them on the
telephone and catches Gary Rothstein on the phone. Rothstein agrees
not to sell the Goodall Stuff at auction until the 850 motion can be
heard. Commissioner Goldfine sets the hearing on the 850 motion for
Monday June 13, 2011.
March 25, 2011 Commissioner Goldfine signs the order granting the
Time Shortening Motion and setting the hearing for June 13, 2011.
June 7-8, 2011 Gary Rothstein sends several emails to Sam Sloan
saying that under no circumstances will the Goodall Stuff be returned
to the Goodall Mansion.
June 9, 2011 Gary Rothstein calls Sam Sloan at 6:00 AM California
time offering to return the Goodall Stuff to the Goodall Mansion
provided that Sloan agree to certain conditions. Sloan replies that he
must consult with Roy Hoppe since Sloan is in New York City now and it
is Roy's stuff too.
Roy is not available as he is playing in a very important bridge game.
(Roy is a professional bridge player.)
By the time Roy is reached, Sloan has received an email from Robert
Shuken, attorney for Michaans Auction House, saying that as Michaanbs
Auction House has no interest in this case, it just wants to return
the stuff so that it will not have to appear in court on Monday
morning. Robert Shuken offers to have the stuff returned on Friday,
June 10, 2011.
June 10, 2011 As Sam Sloan is in New York, he tries to arrange for
somebody with the keys to be at the Goodall Mansion so that Michaans
auction House can return the stuff. Unfortunately, Roy Hoppe has to
play in another very important bridge game. (Roy Hoppe is a
professional bridge player.) Shanti Onofre is indisposed too.
Fortunately, Frank Thornally who is a long distance away, drives in
and is there when the trucks from Michaans arrive. The Goodall stuff
arrives in about a hundred storage boxes and is put in the Goodall
garage except for some of the larger furniture items that are put in
the living room. Many works of fine art belonging to the Goodalls are
missing among the items returned by Michaans.
Upon receiving a report that the Goodall stuff has been returned to
the Goodall Mansion by Michaans, Gary Rothstein demands that Sloan
have the 850 motion taken off calender. Sloan calls the court but is
informed that it cannot be taken off calender and an appearance is
required at the hearing.
June 13, 2011 Sloan flies from New York to California and appears at
the hearing before Judge Adams. Bank of America and Gary Rothstein do
not appear. Sloan informs the court that the Goodall stuff was
substantially returned on late Friday afternoon but it was mostly
returned in a jumbled mess in storage boxes and without going through
all those boxes it is impossible to determine what might be missing.
Judge Adams takes the motion off calender, saying that when Sloan is
able to determine what is missing she is sure that he will come back
and complain about it.
July 28, 2011 Sloan is now living in the Goodall Mansion to secure
and protect it from further break-ins by Bank of America. On this date
Sloan comes home on the afternoon of July 28, 2011 and finds a real
estate agent rummaging around in the back yard of the house at 461
Peachstone Terrace, San Rafael, California 94903. There are two real
estate agents trespassing on Goodall Estate Property. They say they
have been sent by Guide Dogs for the Blind who, they said, own the
One of the real estate the agents gives her name as Carol Chapman of
CRC Partners, San Anselmo CA 94979. The other, a man, who had opened
the gate and whom I found in the back yard and who seemed to be
trying to open the windows to get into the house, did not give his
name. He has been trying to open the same small window that the Bank
of America had left unlocked when they burgled the house on February
28, 2011. This proves that their leaving that particular window
unlocked was not an accident. I tell them both in no uncertain terms
that Guide Dogs for the Blind does not own the property and has
nothing to do with this property. I tell them to get out and to tell
Guide Dogs that they had better not send anybody again.
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