2024 Capitol Crimes Board

Claire Booth, President

Claire Booth is a former journalist who has reported on high-profile stories all over the country, including that of a California cult leader who became the subject of her nonfiction book The False Prophet. After spending so much time covering crimes so strange and convoluted they seemed more fiction than reality, she had enough of the real world and decided to write novels instead. Her Sheriff Hank Worth mysteries take place in Branson, Missouri, where small-town Ozark politics and big-city country music tourism clash in – yes – strange and convoluted ways. Her latest, Dangerous Consequences, is out now. Find out more at www.clairebooth.com

Karen Phillips, Vice President

Karen A. Phillips lives in northern California and writes humorous, fun, action-packed mysteries. Her characters are engaging and fearless . . . and yes, she does take boxing lessons. Visit her at KarenAPhillips.com.

Facebook: KarenAPhillips/Author

Instagram: kannphillips

Twitter: @phillips_writes

Jessica Cline, Secretary

Jessica Cline, who writes as Jessica Arden is the author of ONCE GHOSTED, TWICE SHY, the first in the Ghosted paranormal cozy mystery series. She’s stomped grapes in her native California, hiked 350 miles on an ancient pilgrimage route in Spain, had breakfast with a coatimundi in Costa Rica, and spent the night in a monastery. But wherever life takes her, her true north will always be with her husband and two energetic boys. When she’s not writing, you can find Jessica teaching, crafting, or hyper-focusing on her latest research obsession. She's also passionate about connecting with other writers and working towards success together. Jessica's short fiction has appeared in Woman's World as well as multiple anthologies. Learn more at www.jessicaarden.com

James L'Etoile, Treasurer

James L’Etoile uses his twenty-nine years behind bars as an influence in his award-winning novels, short stories, and screenplays. He is a former associate warden in a maximum-security prison, a hostage negotiator, facility captain, and director of California’s state parole system. He is a nationally recognized expert witness on prison and jail operations. He has been twice nominated for the Silver Falchion for Best Procedural Mystery and Best Thriller, as well as The Bill Crider Award for short fiction. His published novels include: Dead Drop, Black Label, At What Cost, Bury the Past, and Little River. L’Etoile’s Black Label garnered a Silver Falchion Award for the Best Book by an Attending Author at the 2022 Killer Nashville Conference. The Devil Within and Face of Greed are both set to release in 2023. You can find out more at: www.jamesletoile.com

Paula Benson, Member-at-Large

A legislative attorney and former law librarian, Paula Gail Benson’s short stories are found in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, Kings River Life, and the following anthologies: Mystery Times Ten 2013; A Tall Ship, a Star, and Plunder; A Shaker of Margaritas: That Mysterious Woman; Let It Snow; Fish or Cut Bait: a Guppy Anthology; Love in the Lowcountry, Volume 1 and Volume 2; Heartbreaks and Half-truths; The Empty Stage; Once Upon a Time; Stand Out: the Best of the Red Penguin Collection, Volume 2; My Robot and Me; Mystery Most Diabolical; and An Element of Mystery. She co-authored “A Matter of Honor” (in Killer Nashville Noir: Cold Blooded) with New York Times Bestselling thriller writer Robert Dugoni. Find out more at www.paulagailbenson.com

Chris Dreith, Member-at-Large

Chris Dreith got hooked on writing mysteries while creating plays for her local Carnegie Library’s fundraiser, Mystery in the Library. While running her design/remodel business, she wrote several short stories, including “Old Soles” in the Bouchercon 2020 anthology and “Unknown Male and Parts of Two Others” in Cemetery Plots, the Capitol Crimes 2021 anthology. Recently retired, she is happily adding more quirky short stories to her arsenal and working on her first thriller novel.

Harriet Fox, Member-at-Large

Harriet Fox is a true crime author. She is currently working on her third book which is about mothers who kill their children. It will be titled Mommy Murderesses and will be published by Exposit Publishing, a branch off of McFarland Publishing. It should debut in 2023. She has twenty-six years of law enforcement experience working a myriad of positions, with most of her years as a Correctional Officer. Harriet is a bibliophile, enjoys wine tasting, traveling, spending time with family and friends, and anything involving true crime. She will be taking a stab at crime fiction in her future. Learn more about Harriet at www.authorharrietfox.com

Myra Jolivet, Member-at-Large

Myra is a former award-winning TV news reporter and anchor who has covered national and local news. Myra has held political appointments, and corporate communications positions, and appeared on true crime reality series. An empty nest and a bottle of vodka inspired Myra to embrace her heritage and create the Sarah Doucette Jean-Louis Mysteries, a former family therapist turned psychic sleuth in the San Francisco Bay Area. Sarah and Myra share a Berkeley childhood and Louisiana Creole roots, the perfect backdrop for murders, visions, and voodoo spells. Myra is currently working on a new series and a new Creole sleuth.

Richard Meredith, Member-at-Large

A native of Flint, Michigan, Richard Meredith moved to California while serving in the US Navy and remained to finish college with degrees in Biology. His career as a marine scientist and wildlife biologist for the federal government and the private sector has provided the fodder for his writing. His newest novel, Maskirovka—The Russian Science of Deception, was recently listed in the Top 100 Indie Books of 2022 by Kirkus Reviews. The story draws heavily on his work as an environmental consultant with the petroleum industry. His experience on commercial fishing boats in the Pacific formed the backdrop of his thriller, The Crow’s Nest, which won the Silver Falchion Award for the best Action-Adventure novel at the 2021 Killer Nashville Conference. He enjoys travel, bird and wildlife watching, scuba, guitars, and most sports. Mr. Meredith is married with two children and four grandchildren. Learn more at www.richardmeredith.com


Jennifer K. Morita, President Emeritus

Jennifer K. Morita, a former newspaper reporter, spent several years juggling freelance work with being a mom before landing a job with a local university writing for its web site. She wrote her first manuscript during the pandemic and now GHOSTS OF WAIKĪKĪ will be released by Crooked Lane in November 2024. Jennifer’s short story was published in the Capitol Crimes 2021 Anthology Cemetery Plots of Northern California. She was a runner up for the Sisters in Crime Eleanor Taylor Bland Award in 2022. When she isn’t writing, reading or pushing Girl Scout cookies, Jennifer enjoys Zumba, leisurely hikes, watching British mysteries, cooking and baking. Learn more about Jennifer at www.jenniferkmorita.com, or connect on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or TikTok.

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Mission Statement

We are the Sacramento, California chapter of Sisters in Crime. We promote the ongoing advancement, recognition and professional development of women crime writers.

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