Time for the latest Weekly Dump! This week, we’re stuck on stupid, the revolving turnstile at the county jail, Watsonville man arrested for gang shooting in Santa Cruz, Rambo goes down in Live Oak, Atlas shrugged, motorcyclist killed on Soquel, poster kids for county probation, knife fight at the Red Room, Public Safety Committee gets an earful, city calls out dubious county spending on mental health, and more!

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Stuck on Stupid in Santa Cruz

This week, the city of Santa Cruz wasted thousands of taxpayer dollars cleaning up after the bums squatting in Camp Coonerty. THIRTY park rangers were called in to clean up after these slobs. They removed 2.5 TONS of trash in the one day cleanup. Watch the video. Did you see the guy in the full HAZMAT suit? This is what the city manager and chief of police are allowing to happen in a community public park with the tacit approval of the city council. They’re all fine with obvious HAZMAT leeching into the San Lorenzo River daily. With no end in sight. SEVENTEEN TONS of trash have been removed by city workers, on the taxpayer’s dime, from this illegal bum squat thanks to Martin Bernal and Andy Mills. How much did that cost us in actual dollars? It’s gotta be hundreds of thousands of dollars at this point.

And now that they’ve cleaned up after all the bums they allowed to pollute the San Lorenzo River, are they finally gone for good, banished to the new “Camp Bonehead” on River street? Oh hell no. That would make too much sense. No, they let them move back in to repeat this pointless, idiotic cycle all over again. Can we just fire the benevolent Bert and Ernie who started this mess with no exit strategy?

Santa Cruz Stuck in Phase 1 of Homeless Plan (KSBW)

We have heavy machinery filling dumpsters with 17 tons of trash left behind by homeless campers in a single downtown public park. That’s not a problem. That’s an unmitigated disaster, thanks to the city manager and the chief of police. And has anyone seen Ryan Coonerty lately? Or is he still ducking all this mierda?

The Revolving Turnstile at the Santa Cruz County Jail

This past Tuesday night around 11PM, SCPD responded to a burglary in progress at the Computer Zone on the 300 block of Laurel Street. Hopefully they didn’t have to go far since the business is almost directly across the street from the SCPD main station. How bad is crime when people have nothing to fear from breaking into a computer business across the street from the police station? SCPD’s K9 Team of Hansen & Cash tracked and located the suspect hiding in the bushes. All of the stolen laptops were recovered, in addition to items stolen from a neighboring residence. This is the same asshat that was caught stealing almost $6000 worth of merchandise from Down Works last week! What does it take to keep someone in the county jail? Apparently stealing almost $6K worth of inventory from a local business isn’t good enough.

Watsonville Man Arrested For Santa Cruz Gang Related Shooting

An 18 year old Watsonville man has been arrested for allegedly shooting at three people in a car near the intersection of Soquel and Branciforte Avenue about a week and a half ago. I covered this story last week (see “Shots Fired Near The Buttery”). Around 2PM on January 20th, SCPD arrived and located a car that was struck by two bullets. Three people were inside the car but none of them were hit. Witnesses reported seeing a white VW Jetta with multiple occupants fleeing the scene on Soquel Avenue. The 18 year old man was booked into county jail for multiple counts of attempted murder, along with a gang and firearm enhancement. Oh, and look what Chief Mills tweeted about 30 minutes before this went down just blocks away from downtown, where a march was taking place. Close enough the Chief probably could have heard the shots (if he was listening).

No problems? Is this really what a healthy community looks like? You decide.

Rambo Finally Gets Taken Down in Live Oak

A Live Oak house was swarmed and surrounded by the SCPD Bearcat, a CHP helicopter, a Sheriff’s K9 unit, and more than half a dozen other officers Saturday night during a tense standoff involving a man who left the scene of a hit and run and barricaded himself inside his house. The 35 year old man, who lives at the home on Capitola Road near 7th Avenue, is apparently a U.S. military veteran with elite combat experience. The suspect kept police at bay for about an hour, before stepping outside around 11:30PM, while throwing his arms up in the air and screaming at the law enforcement officers. When a K9 was sent in to neutralize the suspect, he neutralized the dog instead by choking it. Officers then fired multiple Tasers, which also failed to stop the suspect. When he began running back into his house, a CHP officer stopped him by tackling him in the doorway. Two loaded rifles and a loaded shotgun were found inside the home. The incident began earlier that night when the suspect crashed his Ford pickup truck and fled the scene, the CHP said. CHP officers later found him in his driveway next to his truck. The suspect was booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail on charges of DUI, hit and run, battery against a peace officer, and making criminal threats.

Atlas Shrugged

Scotts Valley Police arrested two men last week for having an unregistered gun and drug paraphernalia. Police spotted them sitting in a parked car in a loading zone. The men refused to identify themselves. Police determined the owner of the car had an outstanding misdemeanor warrant and the passenger was a convicted felon. Police enlisted K9 “Atlas” to conduct a sniff of the vehicle, which resulted in a positive alert to narcotics according to Scotts Valley Police. They searched the car and found an unregistered 9 millimeter handgun with a loaded magazine and extra rounds of ammunition. Both men were arrested for possession of the gun and drug paraphernalia.

Motorcyclist Killed on Soquel Avenue

Wednesday night, a 22 year old man from Soquel died after colliding head on with a vehicle at the intersection of Soquel and Chanticleer. CHP officials say the victim was riding a motorcycle eastbound on Soquel Avenue when a 71 year old male who was driving his van westbound tried to make a left turn. The victim traveled into the path of the van and collided with it. The motorcyclist was pronounced dead at the scene. Witnesses described seeing the motorcyclist passing cars over the painted solid double yellow lines at a high rate of speed. The intersection of Soquel and Chanticleer was closed for over 3 hours during the investigation.

Probation is Another Word For Do Whatever You Want in Santa Cruz

During a probation search this week on a man and woman at a local Santa Cruz motel room, Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputies found a serving tray covered with approximately six ounces of methamphetamine. Deputies also found heroin, Xanax, drug paraphernalia, and over $8,000 in cash. Both were arrested for possession of narcotics for sales and booked into jail. So let me guess? They’ll get probation? Criminal justice reform at it’s finest in California!

Another Poster Boy For County Probation

Wednesday night around 8:45PM, SCPD made a traffic stop on the 100 block of Grant Street on a 46 year old male driver from Santa Cruz. During the stop, it was discovered the driver had outstanding felony warrants. He was also on probation with search terms (there’s that word PROBATION again), and when he was searched it was determined he was in possession of a bindle of methamphetamine, Xanax pills, and other assorted drug paraphernalia in his pockets. The SCPD K9 team of Hansen & Cash searched the vehicle and found a bag containing over 2 ounces of methamphetamine, along with more than $2,300 in cash and drug packaging materials. SCPD arrested the man for possession of narcotic controlled substances, outstanding warrants, and driving with a suspended license. How’s that probation working out for you Santa Cruz?

Knife Fight at the Red Room

Around 11PM on Friday night, a heard a report of a fight at Red Room. It apparently started after someone assaulted a bouncer, and in the resulting scuffle someone threw a knife at another person. Reports indicated 5-6 people were involved. After a short chase, the knife throwing suspect was located and arrested in front of the downtown library.

Public Safety Committee Gets An Angry Earful From Residents

City residents aired out their ongoing concerns and beefs about Camp Coonerty (and the kooks within the city government who continue to prop it up) at Monday’s Santa Cruz Public Safety Committee meeting.

The President of the Santa Cruz Junior Guard Booster Club said she is worried about homeless encampments in areas where children play such as a Cowell Beach. She asked for police to make more sweeps of the beach and parks to clear people out. Another Seabright neighborhood resident said she has witnessed property theft, drug dealing and drug use and wanted to know how she can have better contact with police, particularly access to a department Neighborhood Enforcement Teams devoted to her area. Deputy Chief Rick Martinez confirmed observations about growing homeless camps along Highway 1. He said there are hundreds of people where once there had been about 10. Now six months into his first year as police chief, Mills told the committee and audience that things are about to change.

“We’ve gone through six months of listening,” Mills said. “Now, the listening’s over and it’s time to get at it.”. Oh you think Chief? Can we start “getting at it” now? Now that the listening is over? Talk is cheap. Put up or shut up already.

Mills also stated that police citations are down, particularly related to overnight homeless camping violations. But this claim is pretty misleading since the chief has publicly stated he’s stopped writing tickets for overnight camping violations. When you do something like that, yeah the number of citations go down. To zero. And he’s not including (or mentioning) the fact that the city’s park rangers are now tasked with writing many of these park nuisance violations downtown, and their numbers are conveniently not included in the chief’s numbers.

Mayor David Terrazas asked if there is any way to tell if Santa Cruz’s homeless population is largely local, or coming from out of town. Mills said he had asked his officers to undertake an unscientific collection of homeless people’s residence history, as they come in contact with people. So in other words, they don’t know. They don’t have a clue. They really don’t have a clue here.

City Calls Out the County’s Dubious Spending Decisions on Mental Health

I don’t need more studies to tell me what my eyes tell me every day. We have a serious problem locally with treatment options for the mentally ill, and specifically people who are homeless and suffering from mental illness. The City of Santa Cruz has made a records request to the county for an accounting of millions in state dollars designated for mental health services expansion. Santa Cruz County Behavioral Health is a county department with about 250 workers and a roughly $60 million budget. At the end of last year, Santa Cruz Mayor David Terrazas filed the request over concerns about how the county informed the public of plans to spend the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) money over the next three years. The state generates MHSA revenues by taxing 1 percent of personal income exceeding $1 million, according to California Department of Health Services.  Every three years, the county must approve a plan to qualify for $11 million to $14 million in annual MHSA funding. MHSA money represents about 22 percent of the department’s budget. The county said last week they did not know the amount of unspent MHSA money. The county has a “reserve” MHSA fund saved for potentially “difficult economic times.” At its meeting last week, the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors directed the county administrative officer to respond to issues raised in a letter by Terrazas challenging the draft of the 2017-2020 Mental Health Services Act plan. Terrazas said he was surprised the city had to file a formal public records request for a list of county MHSA expenditures. The documents are expected to be released in February.

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20 Comments

The Weekly Dump 2.2.18

  1. Thank you for all you do. My husband and I just started reading one month ago. Wow, you are right on with the mess our town has become. My unofficial comment is about where the homeless are coming from. Just type their name into a search engine such as google. Usually FB or other social media pops-up and there you go. Most are not from here. A lot from Oregon and Washington. And then you have the Missouri and Louisiana etc. The meth states. Come to CA, we welcome all and bring your trash, and leave your needles. Santa Cruz will give you free food, a place to sleep, and you won’t get arrested for most crimes.
    I am glad I am and elder so I don’t have to grow up or have my children grow up here.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting Mrs. Vee. The fact that most of our “resident” homeless didn’t actually grow up here is like Santa Cruz’s dirty little secret, but the Homeless Industrial Complex loves to claim otherwise (and inflate the local “numbers” rhetoric) every time they come around the city or county looking for a handout. Gotta feed the machine (as well as the homeless of course). Given the amount of free we give out to the local homeless, it’s hard to deny the level of enabling here.

  2. Our city manager is well meaning but seriously in over his head. He’s full of excuses and bizarrely inadequate plans to solve problems that have been on the rader screen for years. He needs to go.

    1. Thanks Mabel. He’s in way over his head. He’s so status quo it hurts. Literally. The last thing he wants to do is rock the boat by alienating anyone. He’s milquetoast, and that’s the last thing we need right now from our city manager (or Chief of Police). We need less enabling and more enforcement. Tough love beats idiot compassion.

  3. Here’s a good one: The County Adult Probation Facility (303 Water St) has a Letter of Authorization (Anti- Trespass letter: aka “LOA”) on file with the SCPD. I shit you not- I heard it while listening to the scanner! Lol

    1. Hilarious! Thanks for sharing Big J. Let’s not forget the former Mayor works for county probation. Terrific job she’s doing over there to reintegrate former felons back into our community.

  4. This is what a healthy community looks like? FFS, what does an unhealthy one look like?
    Is he Chief of Police or the Public Relations Supervisor?

    1. Our chief has set up Camp Coonerty and has addressed the nonexistent problem of local police mistreatment of African Americans. He’s been channeling his inner Don Lane. Too bad he’s not channeling his inner cop.

  5. Don’t forget: The County also received an extra $20 Million a few months ago from another State fund for our Mental Health Services. That Prop 63 money, the Millionaire’s Tax has garnered over $17 Billion over 12 years. The State still cannot account for the use nor the efficacy of this money.

    1. Our County’s Mental Health Commission has been investigated by several Grand Juries and has been found wanting every time. Guess who heads this Commission?

  6. Homeless is a huge problem in SF, Santa Cruz, Orange County, etc! Tourism has complained and Orange County is trying to clean up their problem too. Where are the solutions? Only the problem is being addressed. Is the welfare and sanctuary state the most poor area in the US? Some surveys say yes plus Santa Cruz county has as much crime per capita as many large cities in Los Angeles area! Does Santa Barbara and San Luis Obisbo have problems like us ? Something is wrong here and it might be our leadership!

  7. Unbelievable the gullible leaders in SC are ruining your beautiful town. Your leaders care more about illegals and non tax paying homeless who suck the cash out of local government. Your paper is key to educating anyone who works or owns property in SC. Your status as a haven for illegals only hurts the number one industry , tourism.

  8. Hi Don
    I had never heard of ‘The Weekly Dump”….can you tell me how you get these facts? I don’t want to be ‘
    blathering to my friends without facts. As many others, I have been in SC 35 years and watched as it has become a frightening place. I no longer go downtown at night and..will NOT take out of town guests downtown. It is very very sad

    1. Janet, this is a fun site that I just discovered. My daughter says the info comes from listening to police scanners. It is kinda conservative but then again, as I get older, I get more cantankerous too. Leigh

  9. Is there a way to find out how much money is spent on each encampment cleanup and where in the city budget this is coming from? These repeated cleanups must be adding up to many thousands of dollars. And how the heck are TONS of trash generated?

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