This week, we’re talking about the senseless tragedy at Capitola Mall, a gang stabbing on Soquel, a crazy car chase on West Cliff, the armed robbery at 7/11 on the westside, big meth bust near Twin lakes, mobile drug lab crashes near Dominican, tire slashers downtown, a couple of local gang brawls, SCPD begins posting monthly crime stats online, downtown homeless shelter update, it takes 30 years to build a bridge, Guerreros, and the usual self promotional plugs.
Tragedy at Capitola Mall
Late Sunday afternoon, a man shot and killed himself and his 8 year old daughter in the parking lot of Capitola Mall. The father was identified Monday by the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office as Carlos Garcia, 36, of Watsonville. The senseless murder suicide happened around 3:30PM, inside the family’s car while it was parked next to Macy’s. The father shot his daughter to death before fatally shooting himself. The family had been shopping together earlier at the mall, according to Capitola Police Chief Terry McManus. The mother called 911 to report that her husband was threatening to kill himself. Capitola Police arrived at the mall minutes after receiving the 911 call, and the woman directed officers to where they could find the family’s black Kia Soul. Responding officers found the father and daughter inside the vehicle suffering from gunshot wounds. Paramedics tried CPR, but both the man and child were pronounced dead at the scene.
A GoFundMe account has been set up to help the family with funeral expenses for the child. Please consider a donation or sharing the fundraising page on social media.
Gang Stabbing at Santa Cruz Metro Bustop
SCPD responded to a stabbing outside a bus parked in the 1200 block of Soquel Avenue in Santa Cruz on Wednesday, where a 25-year-old male victim was taken to the hospital in stable condition with non-life threatening injuries. The victim, who is from Santa Cruz, was stabbed as he exited a Metro bus in the area of Soquel Avenue and Darwin Street. He then apparently waved down a Good Samaritan who drove him to the hospital. Witnesses reported the victim was being chased when he boarded a Metro bus in the 1000 block of Soquel Avenue. The suspects then followed the bus in their car to Soquel Ave and Darwin St. As the victim exited the bus, two suspects attacked him. The victim was uncooperative with SCPD. The preliminary investigation indicates that the incident is gang-related. Santa Cruz Police Detectives are continuing the investigation.
Car Chase on West Cliff Drive Ends at Santa Cruz Wharf
A woman wanted for a battery on another person was located at Steamer Lane early Wednesday evening. Someone spotted her there and called it in, and when SCPD arrived on scene, she attempted to leave despite being blocked in by SCPD. Apparently, SCPD was able to remove the key from the ignition of her car, but she “barricaded herself in the vehicle”. Uh, don’t YOU (SCPD) have the key? Unlock the freaking door and yank her out already. Or maybe they’d rather bring 3-4 more units to try to talk her out, and maybe offer her a slice of pizza. Make she sure she’s comfortable and fed while she throws a meth induced tantrum in public. Instead, she somehow managed to take off in her car and the chase was on down West Cliff Drive, and even up on the pedestrian walkway at times. SCPD chased her down West Cliff at speeds of up to 45MPH from Pelton past Steamer Lane, where the driver pulled into a parking lot and almost hit a number of pedestrians. The driver blasted through the Wharf entrance gate being pursued by multiple units. Who drives onto the wharf while being chased by SCPD? Tweekers high on meth do. They blocked her in. Once they stopped the vehicle, she tried to crawl out of the sunroof. When that didn’t work, she barricaded herself in the vehicle again. This resulted in more units being dispatched and they closed the entrance to the wharf. BRING IN THE DOG ALREADY. Harbor Patrol and Fire and Rescue are mobilized in case she jumps off the wharf. ALL FOR ONE TWEEKER BEHAVING BADLY IN PUBLIC. SCPD finally arrested her. Here’s what one eyewitness having dinner at Gilda’s had to say:
“She was drugged out and stripped naked and got on top of her vehicle and was dancing, then got back into the SUV and they had to bust out the windows to get her into custody!! 9 cop cars were chasing her down the wharf we were sitting at Gilda’s eating dinner!! Crazy stuff”
The moral of this story is you get what you’re willing to tolerate. Welcome to Santa Cruz, home of free needles for the walking dead. All those tourists on the wharf tonight got one hell of reality check.
Armed Robbery at 7/11 on Mission and Swift
Late last Thursday night I got a report of an armed robbery at the 7/11 on Mission on the outer westside of Santa Cruz. Suspects were reported to be 2 Hispanic males in their twenties, wearing bandanas, with one flashing a black, semi automatic handgun. The suspects apparently made a “swift” getaway. Did you really think I’d miss the opportunity to use that?
Thursday Morning Drug Bust Near Twin Lakes Yields Over a Pound of Meth
Thursday morning, SCPD arrested two alleged 2 methamphetamine dealers at Shearwater apartments on Portola, confiscating more than a pound of methamphetamine as well as a firearm. Santa Cruz police confiscated more than a pound and a half of methamphetamine while serving a search warrant on the apartment around 4:30AM. The Neighborhood Enforcement Team and Santa Cruz County Gang Task Force served the warrant. SCPD also found a Glock pistol and several high-capacity magazines. No truth to the rumor they came here because they thought we were a Sanctuary City for meth dealers. Are we happy?
Mobile Drug Lab Busted After Crash
A 23 year old Santa Cruz man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of having what’s being described by SCPD as “a rolling honey-oil lab”. Honey oil is also referred to as “hash oil” or “wax” and is created by using butane to extract THC from marijuana. The process can often have explosive results. The man was arrested shortly after 11PM on Tuesday after he wrecked his lab on wheels near Dominican Hospital. He reportedly lost control of his vehicle and struck another vehicle, according to the CHP. The man will be charged with felony manufacturing a controlled substance by chemical synthesis. Officers also located a handgun in the driver’s car. The man was taken into custody at the Santa Cruz County Jail on Wednesday afternoon, according to jail records. Bail was set at $50,000. $50,000 bail for felonious crashing your mobile drug lab in Santa Cruz. What’s wrong with this picture?
Tire Slasher Hits Car on Front and Cathcart
A woman slashed 3 tires on a car in the parking lot behind Pizza My Heart last Friday afternoon around 1PM. In broad daylight. This was reported and witnessed by a traffic code enforcement officer.
Gang Brawl On Raymond
Friday night around 6:30PM, I heard about a gang brawl in the lower Ocean area. The report was 5-6 males, “dressed in blue”, were fighting in the street on the 200 block of Raymond near Leibrandt. A group of men reportedly jumped in a white BMW SUV and left the scene chased by another group. SCPD responded and found what they thought were 4 of the men nearby in a parking lot on 3rd street. Multiple units converged on the men, but were hindered when the men split up and there weren’t enough officers to stop them all. SCPD eventually was able to round them all up. Herding cats. Two of the males were juveniles.
Gang Brawl on Sycamore
About a half hour later around 7PM, I got a report of another gang brawl, this one involving Hispanic females, in the 100 block of Sycamore. This is about a block and a half from downtown. SCPD again sent multiple units, shifting some of those responding to the Raymond call above. The caller who reported this brawl said the suspects brawling left in a white car. A BMW SUV perhaps? This person reported a “white Honda SUV”, but it was most likely the same car. Roving gang brawl. Just another Friday night in Santa Cruz!
SCPD Begins Posting Monthly Activity Reports Online
SCPD announced it will begin publishing monthly activity reports online, which detail police department activities. The reports will provide a highlight of typical cases handled by SCPD and provide a variety of crime statistics. Community policing highlights will also be included in the monthly activity report.
Remember That Downtown Homeless Shelter I Mentioned a Couple Weeks Ago?
Construction Begins Monday on Branciforte Creek Bicycle/Pedestrian Bridge
The City of Santa Cruz is scheduled to begin construction of the Branciforte Creek Bicycle/Pedestrian Bridge on Monday, March 27th. The project will include an active transportation bridge from San Lorenzo Park over Branciforte Creek and a paved multi-use path under the Soquel Avenue Bridge to meet the existing Riverwalk path. The multi-use path will connect to the levee trail south of the Soquel Avenue Bridge completing the gap in the 5-mile Riverwalk system that runs north-south through the center of Santa Cruz. The project was conceived in the 1987 San Lorenzo River Design Concept Plan and is part of the City’s approved Active Transportation Plan (formerly the Bike Plan) and Capital Improvement Program. An extensive public process was completed through the City’s Transportation and Public Works Commission to select the alignment and design. Extensive? I’ll say. It only took 30 FREAKING YEARS TO GET IT STARTED. Welcome to Santa Cruz. Construction will be funded by a $1.8M Caltrans Active Transportation Program grant and $600,000 in local Gas Tax funds, and will be performed by Graniterock. Completion is expected by November.
by Ernie Douglas
Golden State Warriors:
The Dubs took on the Bucks last Saturday night and drubbed them 117-92. The Greek Freak was never an issue here. Curry had 28 points and seems to be slowly coming out of his shooting slump. Monday night, they had a TNT televised matchup with Russell Westbrook and the OKC Thunder. These games lately are never close but always chippy. There’s some serious dislike for the Warriors (and especially Curry) from Westbrook, and that bleeds over to the rest of his team. We even had a little pushing and shoving scrum that seemed to be escalated by Curry (of all people), and it was a pretty good thing actually. The Warriors are loaded with REAL tough guys, basically acknowledged old school NBA “thugs” who will protect and enforce not only the paint but their all star players as well. You’ve got guys like Zaza, David West, Matt Barnes, oh and this guy named Draymond Green who is the LAST guy I’d want to rumble with. They have 4 guys who will beat the crap out of any player on the other team (or at least try to without any hesitation) and most teams are lucky if they have one guy like that. Bogut was that guy, but since they lost him, they added 3 other enforcers to replace him. Westbrook, as good as he is, will never shoot as well as Curry. But he’s hell bent on trying to prove otherwise. He had an off game against the Warriors, shot terribly, and basically let Curry et al get under his skin yet again. Curry is the ultimate competitor but I don’t think he makes this Westbrook thing personal, the way Westbrook seems to make it personal. The Warriors have beaten OKC 7 straight times now. They know they are the better team. And it is personal as a team. The Warriors genuinely don’t like this team, and relish beating up on them. They won going away 111-95, with Klay pouring in 34 points and Curry adding 23. They faced Dallas on Tuesday night on a back to back, in a possible trap game given the high level of emotion from the night before. Dallas games are always fun with Harrison Barnes and Curry’s little brother Seth, who is really turning into a solid player for Dallas. The Mavericks have a promising young core with Barnes, Curry, and Nerlens Noel. They can build around those 3 guys for the future. As for the game, The Dubs won going away 112-87 but it was entertaining to watch the Curry brothers dueling. Klay had 23 points and Ian Clark chipped in 18 off the bench.
Upcoming games this week: 3/24 vs. Sacramento, 3/26 vs. Memphis, 3/28 at Houston, 3/29 at San Antonio
Santa Cruz Warriors:
The Santa Cruz Warriors took on Texas last Friday night at the Kaiser, losing to the Legends of Tejas 120-107 in front of their 28th straight sellout crowd. 2 guys from the A team were down playing with the Sea Dubs. Rookie first round pick Damian Jones led Santa Cruz with 22 points and 9 rebounds. Scott Wood added 18 points, while LaDontae Henton came off the bench to contribute 14 points and 9 rebounds. Kevon Looney, also on assignment from the Golden State Warriors, came off the bench to score 11 points and grab 7 boards. They took on the Legends the next night and turned the tables, winning a high scoring shootout 135-121. The Warriors were led by Jabari Brown with 26 points off the bench. Scott Wood added 18 points and 9 rebounds, while Alex Hamilton contributed 18 points, 6 assists, and 6 rebounds. James Southerland notched a double-double, finishing with 17 points and 11 rebounds. Damian Jones, on assignment from the Golden State Warriors, scored 17 points and grabbed 8 rebounds for Santa Cruz while Kevon Looney, also on assignment from Golden State, notched a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Then on Tuesday, the Sea Dubs beat the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, the D-League affiliate of the Houston Rockets , by a score of 138-125. Jabari Brown scored 36 points, while Damian Jones had 12 rebounds and 17 points and Phil Pressey chipped in 10 assists and 13 points. Thursday night they took on the Austin Spurs in the 2nd game of this Texas roadtrip. They beat Austin 106-103. Phil Pressey had 24 points while GSW rookie Damian Jones added 23 points and 12 rebounds. Warriors are 28-19 right now and on the cusp of the playoffs.
Upcoming games this week: 3/25 at LA, 3/27 at Salt Lake City
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