The Weekly Dump 9.14.18

Aptos Man Thrilled With Outlook on Life in Prison Without Parole

This Tuesday, a Santa Cruz judge sentenced an Aptos man to serve two consecutive life sentences in prison without the possibility of parole for killing his parents in the Aptos hime they shared. The man pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but last month a jury found him sane at the time of the 2013 murders. In June of 2013, the man showed up at his parents house and ran down his 71 year old father with a car, then he beat his 68 year old mother to death.

Runaway Child Found in Stolen Car

This Monday, Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputies spotted a stolen car and stopped it on the 100 block of Pauline Road. Inside the car were a 19 year old male, a 16 year old boy, and a 12 year old girl, who had apparently ran away from a group home and was picked up by two teens in Santa Cruz County. The 19 year old was arrested for contributing to the delinquency of a minor and possession of the stolen car. The 16 year old was also arrested for possession of a stolen car. When Deputies followed up on the stolen car, they found two more stolen cars off Marchant Street in Watsonville.

Watsonville Brawl Leads to Man Being Stabbed Multiple Times

A 22 year old man was stabbed multiple times during a large street fight in Watsonville., according to reports from the Watsonville Police Department. The stabbing occurred around 12:3AM Sunday morning on the 400 block of Riverside Drive. The victim was taken to a trauma center where he is expected to survive his injuries. Watsonville police shut down the area for several hours as they searched for suspects and gathered evidence, but apparently no arrests have been made.

Man Stabbed in the Neck in Felton

Santa Cruz Sheriff’s deputies responded to a report on Saturday of a victim of a stabbing in the area of Highway 9 and Graham Hill Rd. When deputies arrived on scene, they found a male suffering from a neck wound. With the help of witnesses in the area deputies were able to find and arrest Freddie Vargas for the stabbing. The victim was transported to the hospital and was treated and released.

Watsonville Man Pulls Stolen Gun on Neighbor

During an altercation with his neighbor last Monday, a 21 year old man pulled a stolen gun on him and was later arrested at a nearby gas station. The stolen gun also happened to be one of the guns stolen from last year’s burglary at Markley’s Indoor Range. He was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail for drug and gun charges. When Watsonville police found him, he was holding a handgun and had several bindles of methamphetamine.

Flash in the Can

Last week, SCPD responded to a call about a prowler in the backyard of a residence on the 100 block of South Park Way. As the suspect fled on foot through Arana Gulch, a neighbor followed the suspect and directed SCPD to the area he was last seen. The prowler was eventually apprehended near Soquel Avenue and 7th Avenue. The 41 year old transient was arrested for prowling, resisting arrest and a felony flash incarceration hold. “Flash incarceration” is a period of detention in county jail due to a violation of an offender’s conditions of post-release supervision.

El Circo del Ayuntamiento

This week it’s all about the yard signs! The poor, innocent yard signs!

Upcoming Candidate Forums (that I’m aware of):

These are all open to the public. Mark your calendars!

  • October 2nd: Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce Candidates Forum

This week, we had the Santa Cruz Neighbors candidate forum. It was packed with people and was very well run. Everyone showed up because everyone got invited! Instead of the usual profiles, here are my quick thoughts on how everyone did.

The Line Up (listed alphabetically)

Paige Concannon
Paige gave thoughtful answers. There were a few questions that threw her a curve but she handled them well. She’s blunt. Bless her for that. She shared her experiences working with local homeless, as well as her frustrations.

Phillip J. Crawford
This was my first introduction to Philip. Interesting guy. He has large presence when he speaks. I like his background and experience and he seems genuine about wanting to get involved. I know he’s a long shot but he actually seems like a pretty good guy.

Justin Cummings
My first introduction to Justin too. Good speaker, articulate, didn’t rush and gave thoughtful answers. Doesn’t want to hire more cops. Wrong answer.

Drew Glover
Not my first introduction to Drew. He’s nothing if not predictable. He’s a good speaker, he’s passionate about what he believes, he can carry people’s attention (not an underrated skill). He also doesn’t want to hire more cops. Wrong answer.

Cynthia Hawthorne
My first introduction to Cynthia. I guess she did ok but nothing really stood out about her for me. Nothing offensive, nothing exciting.

Dave Lane
My first introduction to Dave. Interesting guy. Not what I was expecting. Very animated when he talks. Kept things lively and interesting

Greg Larson
My first introduction to Greg. I thought he bragged a lot.

Donna Meyers
My first introduction to Donna too. I guess she did ok but nothing really stood out about her for me. Nothing offensive, nothing exciting. See, I knew I would end up getting them confused.

Richelle Noroyan
Richelle seemed tired, not from doing this but from a very long and crazy city council meeting from the night before. Yet she still nailed her answers and did very well.

Ashley Scontriano
Of all the people who spoke, Ashley was the one who “brought it”. Between working the crowd as she stood and walked around giving her answers and talking directly to people in the crowd, she brought knowledge and passion to her answers and was one of the few able to command the room’s attention when she spoke.

Don’t Forget to Register to Vote!

You can register online here! It only takes a few minutes, and really, there is nothing more important you can do to help elect a candidate than register to vote! It’s starts or ends there. What is key this November is to register as many new, like minded, previously unregistered people to vote as we can. It’s much easier to register a new like minded voter than it is to convert an already registered (and likely set in their ways) voter. So if you know anyone who likes the Weekly Dump, get them registered to vote now! We need their votes!

You Can Help Change the City Charter!

I saw the mayor posted this on his Facebook page:

“On August 14, 2018, the City Council created the Charter Amendment Committee, tasking the Committee with reviewing and making recommendations on potential changes to the City Charter in several specific areas. Please fill out and return the questionnaire at the link below and return – no later than Wednesday, September 19th!” The application for at-large appointments was recently released and can be found here!

Return it to Casey Hemard, Principal Management Analyst
via e-mail:
or mail:
City of Santa Cruz
809 Center Street Room 10
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Attn: Casey Hemard

Charter Amendment Committee candidate interviews will take place at the evening session of the Council meeting of September 25th, with final appointments expected at the City Council meeting on Tuesday, October 9th.

Check Out Our Twitter Feed for More Mierda!

Be sure to check out and follow our Twitter feed for even more mierda! Even though the Dump only comes your way once a week, I try to post breaking news and updates on other days as well. So check us out and follow us on Twitter for even more updates about real time news in Santa Cruz you might not otherwise hear about.

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  1. Yoko F Thunders

    Sometimes, a short dump is A-Okay… call it a clean snap and just move forward.

  2. Hi Ben,
    Thanks again for your ongoing efforts at keeping our city transparent and accountable!
    And I personally appreciate your fair and equal assesssments of our city council candidates.
    No matter who you like or don’t, you always seem to give an honest, objective review.
    My curious question is… Why did the recent candidate forum seem scripted? Rumors
    and rumbleings are rising that some, but not all, candidates received the questions a couple days in advance…
    Any thoughts on that? And was it just me, or did it seem centered almost exclusively on affordable housing?

  3. I get more local news here than from our local paper. Keep us informed. Thanks!

  4. It’s a change year in politics across the country. A change year means things have to change, folks. The same old local machine message at the forum felt condescending and weak. Thank you for urging readers to attend a candidate forum, Wednesday’s forum was very illuminating.

  5. The city council fiasco had all the fringe crowd out in force including the first speaker who identified himself as the leader of the local Socialist organization and part of Movement For Housing Justice. No surprise here, as one leader of that group and submitter of the rent control measure has called for the end to private property ownership. At the meeting, it felt a bit unnerving at times as the pro rent control crowd was not respectful at all and yelled out things like calling people greedy, capitalists, shouted slogans etc. etc. When contacted by the city they had no response or answer regarding the city’s alternative to Measure M which is better than Measure M, offers protections like restricting large rent increases to tenants, has caps and without an expensive rental board. That’s why Measure M should be voted down. The city replacement will trigger relocation fees paid by landlords to tenants who are priced out by large rent increase attempts….. so it’s a simpler fix.

    How does the dump fell about candidates being made aware of questions to be asked at the forum in advance because according to the Sentinel…that’s what happened. Doesn’t seem right and gives a bad candidate a chance to look better than they are with time to plan answers.

    • Nobody got the questions in advance. I’m not sure how that rumor got started but it’s just not true.

      • I read it in the Sentinel, true or not but why would they print that without a retraction if untrue?

        • Show me the exact quote in the Sentinel article. I haven’t seen it. All I’ve seen his hearsay and conspiracy theories, which is not a good look for anyone to be pushing out there. And yes, the Sentinel can make mistakes, they aren’t perfect. And people can get misquoted. But there was no giving out questions to the candidates before the event. Some people were just well prepared. Some people read off their “topic notes” they brought with them (and some took notes while others were talking and read from that). But there was no cheating here, and to even speculate that does a huge disservice to the organizers and the candidates themselves.

    • will you spell out who said hes the leader of the local socialist organization? were they really a “fringe group?” it seems like they are calling all the shots. these guys are making me hate santa cruz :0(

      • The first speaker was supposed to be ( from memory) Zev Hirshfield or Hirshfeld who has been very visible with The Movement For Housing Justice group, including Sentinel articles featuring him going door to door collecting signatures for the ballot. He was replaced by another speaker I mentioned who’s name I do not know but I saw him in advance wearing a Socialist Button on his shirt and when introducing himself identified himself as the local president. A playback of the council meeting will provide you his name and vitriolic rhetoric. I’m finding that the far left is very much like the far right with respect to showing little tolerance for discussion/ compromise and instead trying to shut down free speech via intimidation, shouting down and other disrespectful behavior.

        A rental board with no agency to oversee it is unbelievable in this day and age and that’s what M calls for plus they get to set their own salaries. One would have to believe that every single landlord, out of hundreds in town, were a horrible person with no respect or concern at all for tenants, to even consider voting for Measure M.

        • thank you. i agree about the far left and the far right. any socialist system that ends up “all public” ends up being a military dictatorship. any system that ends up all private can be very totalitarian too.

          i wasnt aware of the fact that a lot of tea party people are more open minded than just alt right neo nazi crap or “we all have to be christians” or “pro choice is murder” lol. i like ron paul- but sometimes his son seems looney-

          i liked obama because i wanted progress with healthcare. the level of anger and self righteousness in the current left eco movement in california is nauseating at best. i really hope we can change course before its too late

  6. g edward griffen is a great writer. he wrote the creature from jekyl island. he also made a documentary series on real world conspiracies … its free on amazon prime. anyone who still thinks socialism creats a utopia might want to check that out. our system has been hijacked by an oligopoly, but it is still better, and still gives us more freedom than socialism.

    these “grass roots socialist peoples movements” are anything but that. they are top down formulaic rebellions, and usually financed by someone with a lot of money.

    want to topple a thriving economy/state/city/country? allow an extremely small percentage of the “intellectual” class to implement socialism. these docs also showed that at the time of any socialist takeover, usually only about 1 percent of the population thought it was a good idea. by the time they can see it was a mistake, its too late to turn back.

    and the far left is so interested in labelling things as hate speech. how about calling their proposed rent control hate legislation? enabling master tenants to do high density subletting with no background checks? doesnt that enable domestic violence? no background checks for three grown men in the adu in your grandparents backyard?!

    more violent neighborhoods? in all honesty, santa cruz feels like one big domestic violence fest. its in the parks, the streets, downtown- a lot of middle aged men high on drugs and alcohol. failing to see the justice and altruism here.

    also there is a cure for hepatitis right?! so if someone got that from a dirty needle, pretty sure they could be cured. what is worse- a bout of hepatitis, or being assaulted by someone high on military grade drugs? get the needles out of here, and no “safe injection sites” who can reason with higher learning like this?

  7. I also attended the forum on Wednesday. I don’t think people received the answers beforehand. I do think the questions were very predictable. Anybody could guess that the questions were going to be about rent control, homelessness, and public safety. A competent candidate is going to prep for obvious questions.
    Also, Ashley was incredible. Can’t wait to vote for her!

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