Local Doctor and Nurse Arrested For Raping Children
A former neurosurgeon with the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and a Dominican Hospital nurse have been arrested on numerous charges involving sexual crimes against children. James Kohut was arrested Sunday on 4th Avenue near the Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor on one felony charge of oral copulation with a child under the age of 10 and two felony charges of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14. He was booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail and is being held without bail. Dr. Kohut has been pretty much a real mess for some time. Apparently, in 2002 Dr. Kohut was disciplined for attempting to remove a temporal aneurysm from the right side of a 36-year-old patient’s brain on May 21, 2002, when x-rays clearly showed the aneurysm was located on the left side of his brain. DOH! RED FLAG! Then later that year, he was also reportedly disciplined for viewing pornography on University Medical Center computers while working at the institution as a neurosurgeon. That’s just the stuff that’s been “officially reported”. I’ve been hearing all kind of horror stories about this guy. Nurse Rashel Brandon was arrested on May 10th and charged with 11 felonies including sodomy, oral copulation and lewd and lascivious acts with a child as well as multiple charges related to the production of child pornography.
Thursday, Watsonville police released disturbing new details about a police investigation in Santa Cruz County. Police now say seven children were victimized by the doctor and the two nurses, the youngest being just 3 years old. Police are also confirming that the doctor and nurses were having sex with children in Santa Cruz County. One of the incidents reported occurred in a hotel in Scotts Valley. 29 year old Emily Stephens was also identified as an additional suspect charged with lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14 and other specific sex acts with a child under 10. They say she is a traveling nurse from Tucson, Arizona. Police say the victims ranged in age from 3 to 13 years old. All are now in protective custody.
Man Pulls Rifle at Raina’s Produce on Ocean
Thursday night around 6:30PM, a report came in that a man walked into Raina’s Produce on lower Ocean and pulled out a rifle. The suspect was described as a white male in his fifties, wearing black clothing, and the staff person who reported it only spoke Spanish. When SCPD arrived, they fanned out to search for the suspect. They located him within minutes walking near the 300 block of Ocean and executed a high risk stop on the suspect and detained him. SCPD apparently knew him by name, and the suspect, who lives near Raina’s, had been making threats to shoot someone for the past week. And today he was out trying to make good on it. Welcome to Santa Cruz folks! This is the stuff you don’t read in the Senile (and it’s way too crazy for me to make up).
Knife Fight on Upper Ocean Near Denny’s
Thursday night around 6PM, multiple reports came in that 4 men were physically fighting in the 100 block of Felker near the Denny’s on Ocean, at least one with a knife. SCPD responded pretty quickly with multiple units and fanned out around River street and the levee after the suspects scattered upon the arrival of the police.
Bum Fights at City Hall on Thursday Night
Thursday night around 7:30, I got numerous reports of a physical fight involving at least 3 people in front of city hall. You know the spot, where all the bums loiter and the city looks the other way. It’s only RIGHT IN FRONT OF CITY HALL. Multiple units responded, wasting yet more city tax dollars and public safety resources. I know the city just put up new signs telling people all the things they can’t do here. Is “brawling on the sidewalk” included? Maybe it needs to be added.
Capitola Block Shut Down For Hours Over Pipe Bomb Investigation
Saturday afternoon around 1:30PM, Capitola police received reports of a suspicious device in the gutter adjacent to Noble Gulch Park at the corner of Monterey and Younger. When officers arrived on scene and found the device, it was very similar in design to a pipe bomb. Monterey Avenue and Younger Avenue near Noble Gulch Park were closed to traffic for about three hours while the Capitola Police Department and the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad investigated the device as a possible bomb. After the bomb squad carefully secured the device, it was determined it was not a pipe bomb.
Wearing Out Your Welcome at the Surf City Inn
Saturday afternoon around 2PM, a report came in of a disturbance at the Surf City Inn, a local SRO dump motel located at 619 Riverside. Apparently a white male in his thirties who overstayed his time and refused to leave tried to punch the manager in the face a couple times and ripped the phone out their hands when they tried to call 911. The suspect and his 3 friends didn’t go far. They were sitting in the park across the street when SCPD showed up. It must be so much fun to work at one of those fleabag motels in the lower Ocean and Beach Flats areas.
Stolen Truck Recovered Within an Hour of Being Stolen From Pacific Avenue
Tuesday morning around 7:30AM, SCPD responded to a report of a stolen Toyota 4Runner from the 1100 block of Pacific Avenue. About an hour later, SCPD spotted the stolen truck driving on River Street. They conducted a high risk car stop, and the driver plus two occupants were detained without incident. The driver, who was arrested for auto theft, was a 42 year old transient from Santa Cruz. A follow-up investigation found video surveillance footage confirming the suspect as the person who stole the truck.
Shots Fired at West Cliff and Woodrow
Friday night around 9PM, a man was driving his Subaru near Woodrow and West Cliff when someone apparently shot at his car. It sounds like this guy was just driving along West Cliff and drove upon a gang fight in the middle of the road, and tried to go around it when he was apparently shot at and chased by someone in the group. The man was shot at but apparently not hit. Suspects described as a while male and female reportedly chased him in an older model white Chevy Suburban or Tahoe. The victim reportedly did not know the any of the suspects, and just appeared to be rolling through the wrong place at the wrong time. Million dollar views accompanied by gang fights in the middle of the road and rolling shootouts.
Drunken Family Fight Leads to Broken Jaw and Broken Arm
On Tuesday night around 10PM, a report of a fight came in involving 2 males at the downtown parking garage. When they arrived they found one male suffering from a broken jaw. Apparently, the fight was between a dad (who was really drunk) and son (who may have been drunk as well). The son also apparently broke off the arm of the device at the parking garage that allows cars to enter and exit, and threw a piece of it at dad (according to a city employee witness on scene). Dad was taken to Dominican and son was arrested. Anyone want to go shopping downtown? This is what you can expect when you park in the city garage. And we want another garage? So we can tolerate more of this kind of behavior?
Thief Nabbed After Smash and Grab From Car Parked on Pacific Avenue
Last Sunday around 1:30PM, SCPD responded to a vehicle burglary on the 1100 block of Pacific Avenue where a window was shattered and the victim’s iPhone was stolen. Broad daylight, 1:30 in the afternoon, probably lots of people around. It’s only one of the busiest intersections in all of downtown. And someone has the balls to just smash a window and steal a phone from a parked car. That tells me that local thieves know we won’t punish them here. SCPD was able to find video surveillance showing two males burglarizing the victim’s Honda and fleeing toward the West Levee. About a half hour later, they contacted a male near the 300 block of Soquel Ave who matched the suspect in the surveillance video. The 21 year old male from Aptos told SCPD that the iPhone he was holding was his. The problem was that he did not know the passcode or phone number to call it. OOPS! WRONG ANSWER. SCPD then contacted the victim, who provided the passcode and phone number, both of which worked on the iPhone that the suspect had in his possession. The suspect was arrested for burglary, receiving stolen property and probation violation. Can we add stupidity in there for good measure?
CVS on Mission Stormed and Robbed
Thursday night around 9PM, a report came in about a robbery in progress at the CVS on Mission street. Three black males in hoodies apparently jumped over the counter and grabbed cash and cough medicine. Two words. Purple Drank! The suspects ran out the back door before SCPD arrived.
City of Santa Cruz Releases April Crime Statistics
The city of Santa Cruz recently updated their website with the monthly crime statistics for April of 2017. These numbers reflect the 30 day period of April 2017 and are for the City of Santa Cruz only. They are a synopsis of the full report, which is compiled and published by SCPD and posted on the city’s website.
- Rapes: 6 (11 last month)
- Robberies: 9 (15 last month)
- Aggravated Assaults: 22 (16 last month)
- Burglaries: 30 (39 last month)
- Larcenies: 271 (241 last month)
- Auto Thefts: 39 (31 last month)
- Arson: 1 (0 last month)
Who’s On First for the Democrats in 2020?
I thought this was an interesting read. It name drops a number of potential nominees for the Democrats to face off against the Apprentice in Chief in 2020.
NAMI Brings Insane Consequences to Aptos
By Hugh Jorgan
I was walking by City Hall the other day and noticed some new signs posted. The hours for City Hall Campus are 7am to 6pm or 30 minutes after a public meeting held in chambers. There are some new rules for the area too. Pretty basic really. No bathing in the fountain, no off leash dogs, no consumption of alcohol or drugs, no sitting or lying on sidewalks, walls, pathways or courtyard areas. Thank you Council, thank you City Manager and staff for posting these signs and to those that will be responsible for enforcing these rules.
City Hall has been a serious mess for some time. I walked by there a few weeks ago and almost stepped in vomit. Food Not Bombs was set up nearby. Coincidence? I think not. In an effort to protest the camping ban the city is enforcing, protesters housed and unhoused started sleeping on City Hall grounds almost 2 years ago. They call themselves the Freedom Sleepers. At first I thought, OK these folks have a cause they believe in and I am good with people doing that. But what it has become is a mess. A loud, inappropriate, unacceptable, ridiculous, unsafe stinking mess. I don’t fault all of the people that are unhoused for this either. Some of them have severe mental health issues, some haven’t drawn a sober breath in decades, some are absolutely respectable, kind caring individuals that are doing the best they can. There are some transient addicts of course and the people living the “nomadic” lifestyle that have zero respect for anyone or anything. They suck. The people I feel however that are the most responsible for the absolute shit storm this has become are some of the activists. They are inciting discord between people. They are using homeless people as props to push their political agenda. Food Not Bombs has been offered shelter to feed the homeless but they have turned these offers down. Why? If the true intent of Food Not Bombs was to feed people then why are they turning down FREE places to feed people? A place where someone can have a meal, sit down for a bit, wash up, use the bathroom and Food Not Bombs is turning it down. These activists are also harassing city staff. Going into offices at 5pm and refusing to leave. So completely self obsessed, not caring that the people working at the office may have children to pick up from daycare, a family to care for, appointments to keep. They harass groundskeepers, they harass rangers and SCPD. I recently watched the LAMEST video ever that was posted by these activists. A ranger had called police to City Hall and one of these activists kept saying over and over that she thought this was wasting the police officers time. Yet later in the video one of these activists was pretending to be a homeless person (your hat and voice gave you away dude) and would not comply with the officer when officer told him to move along. All the while, this was being recorded and she kept repeating over and over “where is he supposed to go?” How in the hell is THAT not wasting the officers time? It’s so hypocritical. Oh and he could probably go home because he isn’t really homeless. The activists participating in these types behavior are bullies and have no regard for anyone else but themselves.
by Ernie Douglas
Golden State Warriors:
The Warriors took on the Spurs in game 1 on Sunday afternoon in Oakland. The Spurs didn’t look like a team beat up or worn out, and the Warriors played like they had rust from too much time off. Spurs were up by more than 25 at one point, but the Warriors came back in the 2nd half and ultimately won a nail biter. Curry had 40 and Durant added 34, and once again, Zaza outscored Klay (11-6) in 13 fewer minutes. In fact, pretty everyone played terrible (or less than well) except Curry, KD, and Zaza. And they still won (barely). It would have looked really bad if they lost game 1 at home here. Game 2 was Tuesday night in Oakland. Kawhi hurt his ankle again in Game 1 and left that game early. He was out for game 2, and with Kawhi out, the game was never close. The final score was 136-100, a 36 point beatdown. Curry had 29 points, and the Warriors got good contributions off the bench from rookie Patrick McCaw (18 points), as well as Livingston and Clark (10 points each). The Warriors rotated 13 guys tonight and all of them scored! That’s what teams are dealing with here.
Upcoming games this week: Game 3 is Saturday night in San Antonio. Game 4 is Monday night in San Antonio. Game 5 is Wednesday night in Oakland (if necessary).
Weekly shoutout to Martin Bernal (I’m serious!), who finally grew a sack and started fighting back against the “not really homeless” kook advocates (see Sugar Bear and his Sugar Mama) who have made it their personal mission to be the biggest mierda stains in the city. Love the signs mah man! NOW DIRECT THE SCPD AND THE RANGERS TO ACTUALLY ENFORCE IT. But it’s a good start to taking back your front yard. We all know it’s just more whack a troll here. We all know you’re just trying to move them ANYWHERE ELSE but city hall. But it’s a start. An acknowledgement that “we have a problem here Houston”. A seed of hope in a garden of endless weeds.
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Great reporting as usual, but you both missed the opportunity to help by not calling out the county mental health services re city hall transients.
Bernal reached out to them 2 weeks prior to posting campus hours in/around city hall. He asked for additional outreach from the county agency for city hall and downtown. He hasn’t heard back.
I reached out to Supervisor Coonerty and it turns out that the County Supervisors responded immediately to Mr. Bernal (6 days prior to the Sentinel article). HSA has placed 2 teams of Mental Health professionals in the city hall/ downtown area two days each week to assist the “city hall transients” the city manager spoke of. Either Mr. Bernal was misquoted (highly likely) or he’s giving out alternative facts (not very likely).
Either way- big shout out for the County Board of Supervisors.
Thanks Big J for the followups and the feedback. Has anyone actually seen these county workers downtown that Ryan is talking about? I wonder what days they are down there and when? Because when it comes to any kind of verbal response or promise by the city or county, my response is a knee jerk “I’ll believe it when I actually see it”. Their favorite tactic to detract from dealing with anything is lip service. Take the city and county at their word? That’s pretty funny.
Days and times:
Wednesday afternoons city hall & library, Thursday mornings pacific avenue/ front st/ cedar/ center.
HSA says this will be consistent and go on for several months.
There are so many mentally ill transients downtown. What, exactly, is HSA able to do? Can it find them places to get them off the streets? Has it ever done that? Saying they’re going to be mental health workers downtown who have no real authority to do anything is just more smoke and mirrors.
I gotta agree with mabel here. Talk is cheap. Solutions are hard. We saw how well the Bob Lee program worked. It involved sending mental health workers downtown to try to reduce nuisance crime recidivism. It failed. Let’s try tough love for a change. Laura’s Law would be a good start.
“The tangled web of Santa Cruz County’s mental health services” from 2 years ago. Nothing’s really improved here in 2 years. http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/article/NE/20150606/NEWS/150609787
Thank you to everyone who has finally spoken out and taken action with regard to the ongoing, for years now,
abuse and misuse of our public buildings and spaces. May many more step up and send a message to our elected officials that we are done with a “tolerance” stance and will NOT vote for people who are not willing to seek proven answers to help the helpless. Enough with the enabling and anarchist activities that have skewed our city’s ability to really tackle mental health and homeless issues. Anarchists have one agenda: to bring down the government anyway possible. This fight is not over. PLEASE stay strong, focused and committed to empowering and not enabling. We are at a “cross roads” in our efforts to make Santa Cruz a safe and clean community again. This is your city. Vote for LEADERS, not followers.
Very well said. Thanks Janet. We appreciate all you are doing for the community. You’re an inspiration. You do more than just talk the talk. You walk the walk.
Sweeping ocean views, scenic riverwalk latrine with exercise stations, free needles, free public speaking therapy every Tuesday night at city hall campus, no police or pesky mental health workers. $72K per year. Little or no work required. Government workers provide assistance on your application for all free services.
“free public speaking therapy every Tuesday night at city hall campus”. It’s actually every OTHER Tuesday, but the sentiment made me laugh out loud. Thanks again Grachus.
THANK YOU. For finally doing SOMETHING about the City Hall debacle that has gone on too long. I was embarrassed to bring visitors to our lovely library and city hall for too long. Gotta start somewhere
Completely well stated in Hugh Views!!!!! More people need to understand whats REALLY going on there.
They have also harassed everyday people just going to meeting at city hall. I feel for all the employees. Food Not Bombs… No permits, breaking all sorts of State Health and Safety codes that are not being enforced!
Great essay, Janet! You named these people: anarchists. They do not care about the “homeless.” All they care about is making headlines. Does that remind you of anybody? They are bullies, just like that ignoramous in the White House.
That ad for the book reveals all: “Mental Health Industry” – “Homelessness Industry” these are industries. There’s no industry to make 3 figures on if there are little to no homeless or mentally ill. So there’s a vested interest, if you’re down and out or in need of mental health care, in keeping you mentally ill or unhoused.