Summer’s winding down and we’re winding up for getting our town back as the kids head back to school locally, Santa Cruz hates Nazis, a stabbing in Live Oak, another stabbing downtown, hash oil lab explodes, naked guy tased, needle threats at the downtown library, multiple cars broken into near the Boardwalk, Challenger lives up to it’s name, Jeff buys a pot farm, manchild murder suspect back in court, Aptos rollover on 1, July crime statistics from the city of Santa Cruz, Brain Damage, free Gin Blossoms shows at the Boardwalk, and more!

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It’s Back to School Next Week!

I guess you could say we’re in the waning days of summer now. Not that I’m complaining mind you. It’s kind of my favorite time of the year, when the kids go back to school, so there’s fewer tourists during the week and the beaches are pretty empty and enjoyable. Santa Cruz High School starts next Wednesday I think. UCSC classes don’t start until September 28th, so we’ve got about a month before they get back and clog up the town again. So as a local, I’m going to enjoy my town for the next month or so (at least more than usual. I always enjoy my town).

Santa Cruz Protests Nazis in Virginia

Early Sunday night around 7PM, a group of locals protested the recent white supremacy protest in Charlottesville, Virginia. By now, everyone pretty much knows what happened in Charlottesville. The visual of a bunch of rich white southern crackers in white polo shirts and Dockers is almost as funny as the visuals of the wanna be army rangers decked out in military surplus gear they bought online ready to rumble against the Antifa Snowflakes. The frontline guys here (I guess there were a few women but it had to be 95% male on the frontline of the skirmishes) were decked out to fight. Of course, one would think nothing like that could ever happen here. But it certainly could happen here. It already happened in Berkeley. These people are shipped in to create a shit show and get on the TV news. And to hijack social media discussions. It’s domestic terrorism. It’s inciting a riot, it’s planned and coordinated, and last time I checked that was still illegal. It’s not free speech if you’re yelling fire in a crowded movie theater (or inciting a riot). Anyways, the protest over the Virginia Nazi protest appeared pretty peaceful here. People hung out at the clock tower waving their signs at traffic. I guess it’s been a while since the last local protest so folks were getting antsy to dust off their signs and costumes. I don’t think we even have any (self acknowledged) Republicans in Santa Cruz, let alone Nazis. People here like to call each other Nazis, but that’s different. That’s just Godwin’s Law.

Stabbing in Trailer Park in Live Oak 

Around 10:30AM on Thursday morning, a man stabbed another man in the chest at the Bell Harbor mobile home park on the 700 block of 30th Avenue, according to Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office. Apparently, two men who lived at the same address in a mobile home park had an argument and the stabbing occurred. I heard unconfirmed reports from witnesses that the victim had died, and I also heard a short report in the Senile where they stated the suspect wasn’t arrested. But the Senile report could have been published before anyone possibly died. If anyone has more info on this, post in the comments.

Another Stabbing in Downtown Santa Cruz

Friday night around 8:45PM, reports came in about another stabbing in downtown Santa Cruz, this one on the 100 block of River street near Front. The stabbing apparently happened on or near the foot bridge that crosses the river, basically across from the Riverfront Twin and the Trader Joe’s parking lot. The victim was stabbed in the stomach. The suspect was described as a younger white male, no shirt and wearing shorts. The victim was also uncooperative with SCPD in helping with a description, and wouldn’t even provide his name to SCPD. The victim and his brother were also apparently arrested for resisting arrest. SCPD later found the suspect in San Lorenzo park behind the county building where they arrested one man. It sounds like there may have been more than one victim as well. At least one victim was flown out by helicopter to a trauma center with major injuries.

Hash Oil Lab Explodes and Burns Off Mill Road

Monday morning, Santa Cruz Fire responded to an explosion and small fire in a shed off of Mill Road in the upper Branciforte area. They were able to knock down and contain the fire before it spread to neighboring homes and surrounding green space. After further investigation, it was determined the cause of the fire may be the result of an illegal hash oil lab in the shed, according to the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s office.

Naked Man Tased After Attempted Pipe Assault

Sunday night, a man was arrested after assaulting a victim with rocks, an aerosol can and a pipe, at a home near Quail Crossing and Ocean Street Extension. The suspect, who had been evicted from the home, first assaulted the tenant with rocks and an aerosol can. When deputies from the Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Office arrived, the suspect had fled but returned naked about an hour later when he assaulted the tenant with a pipe. When deputies returned the second time, the suspect had barricaded himself inside. When the suspect opened the door to confront the deputies, a Taser was deployed on him and he was arrested. The man was charged with aggravated assault, assault with a deadly weapon, assault with a caustic chemical, trespassing and resisting arrest. Sorry for the lack of a photo from the scene.

Woman Threatens to Stab First Alarm Guard With Needle at Downtown Library

Wednesday night around 6:30PM, reports came in that a woman was trying to shoot up drugs in the bathroom of the downtown public library. When a First Alarm guard asked her to leave, she threatened to stab the guard with the dirty needle. The First Alarm guard then called SCPD.

What the hell is wrong with this picture? Who’s library is this really?

Multiple Cars Broken Into Along First Street 

Around 10PM on Sunday night, reports came in that multiple cars parked along First street near Westbrook had their windows smashed and belongings thrown along the sidewalk. Given the location here is right across the street from the Boardwalk, it was most likely tourists who had their car windows smashed and stuff stolen (or left along the sidewalk). Creating fond memories of their stay in Santa Cruz!

Challenger Lives Up to It’s Name

Around midnight on Wednesday night or Thursday morning, SCPD responded to a call regarding a white 2017 Dodge Challenger stuck on the railroad tracks between Depot Park and Bay street. Further investigation revealed that the Challenger drove onto the basketball court at the end of Chestnut near Neary Lagoon, where it drove through a fence and ended up on the railroad tracks, where it continued to drive until it eventually got stuck.

SCPD Officers found a 27 year old male walking down the tracks away from the car, and coincidentally the car was also registered to him. SCPD charged him with public intoxication and transported him to The Santa Cruz County Recovery Center (the drunk tank). The car was towed away. How about a DUI here? The car didn’t teleport itself to the spot on the railroad tracks. This drunken fool drove it there. I can’t imagine how much it cost to clean up this mess. 

What Could Go Wrong With Bums Sleeping in the Park?

Around 11PM on Sunday night, reports came in about a possible domestic disturbance near the duck pond in San Lorenzo park. The witness heard a woman yelling for a male to leave her alone and get his hands off of her. Both appeared to be sleeping in the park according to the witness. It sounds like the male tried to get too chummy and take advantage of the female, who was possibly drunk. Several other people were reported around them sleeping.

Jeff Buys a Pot Farm in Boulder Creek

More than 200 acres nestled in the Santa Cruz mountains was bought for $3 million recently by a man named Jeff. Last name unknown. He said he wants to create a tranquil environment for relaxation and meditation. Oh, and marijuana will be grown on the property. Now we know where the relaxation and meditation will come from.

Accused Killer of Madyson Middleton Back in Court

A Santa Cruz County Superior Court judge scheduled a transfer hearing next Tuesday to determine whether Adrian “A.J.” Gonzalez will be tried as an adult in connection with the slaying of 8-year-old Madyson Middleton in Santa Cruz in 2015. During the hearing before Judge John Salazar this past Wednesday, Public Defender Larry Biggam notified the court he filed a brief regarding A.J.’s background. Because Juvenile Court records are not public, the court would not release the brief and not make it part of the public record. The transfer hearing, which is held in public even though the documents pertaining to the case are not public, is slated for 9AM on Tuesday in Superior Court.

Gonzalez faces seven felonies: two charges of forcible lewd acts upon a child; murder; kidnapping; rape of a victim younger than 14; and penetration by a foreign object upon a child younger than 14. He also faces numerous special allegations on suspicion of luring Middleton into his family’s apartment. Middleton was attacked, stabbed and placed in a recycling bin at The Tannery on River street. Gonzalez has been held at Santa Cruz County Juvenile Hall for the past two years since his arrest in July of 2015. He was 15 when Middleton was killed.

The passage of Proposition 57, which nullified “direct-file” cases such as this particular case, ended up sending this case to juvenile court. This case falls under the new rules of Proposition 57 even though the charges were filed before the new law was enacted. A juvenile court judge will determine whether Gonzalez is suitable for rehabilitation services provided in juvenile detention. Before Proposition 57, district attorneys could file some juvenile cases in Superior Court. Those were considered “direct-file” cases.

Drunk Driver from Aptos Rolls Car on Highway One

Wednesday morning around 11:30AM, a suspected drunk driver suffered serious injuries after crashing his Jeep into a road sign that read “REPORT DRUNK DRIVERS. CALL 911” on Highway 1 near the Buena Vista Drive exit. I can’t make this stuff up. According to CHP reports, the Jeep ran over the sign, careened up an embankment, flipped, and landed on its roof. The 57 year old male driver from Aptos was “quite intoxicated,” according to one officer. The driver was arrested on DUI charges and flown to a trauma center.

Asleep at the Wheel?

Thursday afternoon around 4:30PM, reports came in about a reckless driver on River street, driving a dark grey Charger. Witnesses reported seeing a woman described as “asleep at the wheel” while her passenger was shaking her trying to wake her up. She was last seen driving down River toward downtown near Highway 1.

Man Falls Off Bridge Downtown

Around 4:30AM on Wednesday morning, I heard a report that a man had fallen off one of the bridges downtown. It sounded like it was either the Water street bridge or the Soquel street bridge because it was reported to be in the area near the back of the courthouse. It might have also been the footbridge near Trader Joe’s. Witnesses reported seeing a man lying under the bridge at the waterline laying on the rocks. I heard he had a compound fracture to his arm. and he apparently hurt his skull too. An air evacuation from Dominican was requested due to the serious nature of his injuries.

City of Santa Cruz Releases July Crime Statistics

The city of Santa Cruz recently updated their website with the monthly crime statistics for July of 2017. These numbers reflect the 31 day period of July 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: 2
  • Robberies: 9
  • Aggravated Assaults: 22
  • Burglaries: 17
  • Larcenies: 231
  • Auto Thefts: 26
  • Arson: 9

Anybody Out There?

So I heard recently an interesting little fact (or at least I think it’s fact). Correct me if I’m wrong here! I heard the city doesn’t have any kind of map or data on the locations of pay phones in the city. Now you might not think this is a big deal, especially with the near complete obsolescence of the analog “pay phone”, since pretty much every living person over the age of 6 now has a cell phone. But apparently we still have a few pay phones locally that actually work, and sometimes people call 911 and report crimes in progress, and sometimes they do this and leave the line open. And the city has no way to track the actual location of that pay phone. Is it too much to ask that we get someone from the city to actually map these locations out for SCPD? I also think sometimes more than a few of these calls from pay phones and open lines might involve false alarm calls, and being able to track locations (and I don’t know, maybe add some security cameras to the phone locations?) might help reduce prank calls, which are a dangerous waste of public safety resources.

The Lunatic is on the Grass

Pink Floyd – Brain Damage / Eclipse

Free Gin Blossoms Concert at the Boardwalk

The Gin Blossoms just have one of those signature sounds that make me think of being young and hanging out at the beach. Their hits include “Jealousy,” “Found out About You,” and “Follow You Down” which was featured in the movie “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.” Free shows at 6:30 and 8:30PM.

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13 Comments

The Weekly Dump 8.18.17

  1. With the crime statistics so high, I am wondering why the powers that be, are focusing on traffic enforcement. Shouldn’t they be working on lowering some of the horrible crimes that are being committed daily!! Assault, robberies, burgleries, larceny, drug dealers, etc. ???? Am I missing something here???

    1. I’m pretty sure the traffic enforcement day was the result of some sort of grant money. It was multi-agency, so the feds or state probably ponied up the money for the ticket party. I’m fine with it. The stops could lead to more charges resulting from the stop (and often do). I’d rather see them out on the streets in force than sitting at the office doing paperwork. Thanks Paige!

    2. Unfortunately Paige, our new police chief is busy making PC appearances instead of planning the next crackdown on the Mexican Mafia, Northeners, Southerners, Redwoods and Hells Angel drug gangs that sell the drugs that create the behavior that causes the stories that Ben writes about weekly. Oh, and our Mayor is holding a listening tour on the housing cost problem instead of holding Chief Mills feet to the fire. We are truly sailing in a ship of fools.

  2. Typical week in SC..Bums fighting,rubbing up against each other, and the normal tweeter car breakins..what no gang fights?..shocking…

      1. I’m sure what used to be a side gig is becoming more and more a full time job for you Ben. It’s hard to keep up with everything that is happening in this town!
        We hope you can keep on delivering it fresh but it’s starting to get overwhelming…
        Thanks

        1. haha, thanks! Doing it daily would be a job. Doing it weekly makes it less of a job and more of a hobby (especially as I don’t make a dime off of it). Most weeks the stories write themselves with the amount of crazy we are gifted with daily.

  3. “Multiple Cars Broken into…”
    I saw this coming a while back. I tried warning tourists by posting The Weekly Dump on Visit Santa Cruz (a tourist oriented face book site).
    Visit Santa Cruz’s response was to ban me from commenting.
    Well done Visit Santa Cruz- you set those tourists parked on 1st St. up nicely 😊

    1. I’m pretty sure “Visit Santa Cruz” isn’t interested in highlighting or bringing any attention to the reasons you might not want to visit Santa Cruz. And we’re guided by different missions here. They want to bring tourists here to spend their money. I want to bring shame to the city (and county) that squanders our tax money on vanity projects over public safety. They’re more of an advertisement. I’m more of a “public service”. Thanks Big J!

  4. That photo you got of the sign on the ground with the car upside down behind it is priceless! Here’s a
    good caption for that one, “Oh, sweet irony!”

  5. Hey Ben- you should consider a Tuesday Special Edition…All of the people reported on in Fridays edition can have a follow up.
    Like what happened to the naked guy throwin’ stuff at passersby from the 2nd level of the Walnut St parking garage?
    What happened to the woman who was chased by cops even though they had her car keys?
    What happened to the woman/ addict in the Library bathroom who threatened the First Alarm guy with an infected needle?
    Maybe an update from Cruz Needles…or the Grand Jury?
    If you want to put the city on “front street” that would be the best way.

    1. Nazi’s were national socialists, more like the liberals today, and nothing like the conservatives, certainly nothing what Trump stands for.

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