This week, we’ve got another dead body found in Camp Bernal while local Gateway businesses complain about bad neighbors, there was also an apparent stabbing there, 23 times and counting, looking for his needles perhaps, community unloads on Bruce, a gift from the sea and county, appearances can be deceiving, arrested at the dump, where’s the beef, move it Chalupa, mail thieves hit Boulder Creek, Santa Cruz house fire displaces six, we love a parade, the Weekly Seen, Unfiltered, and more.

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Another Dead Body Found in Camp Bernal

Tuesday night around 5:30PM, SCPD and the Santa Cruz Fire Department responded to Camp Bernal, that growing exponentially by the day, human homeless sty located at Highway 1 and River streets for a report of a dead body. When they responded, they found a 68 year old man dead on arrival in his tent. The coroner was called out and responded. Police are investigating but they said the cause of death doesn’t appear to be foul play, and could have been a drug overdose or natural causes. How is this ok for anyone? That the city and county allow a 68 year old man to just die in this dirty, filthy, muddy, human sty? How many more are there like him? Human tragedy right in our own front yard, and the city and county, clueless as ever, just keeps feeding it and looking the other way.

And do you think the neighbors are enjoying this? Hardly. Lost in all the din and white noise of the usual news media coverage of this out of control problem is the impact on the “neighbors”, the local Gateway Plaza and River street businesses suffering the collateral damage of overreaching idiot compassion. The city needs to hire a new accountant. Or better yet a new city manager. Someone who understands the fiscal impacts of pouring money into a losing venture while simultaneously cutting your tax revenue stream from local business and sales taxes (which funds the city government).

Business owners raise concerns as Santa Cruz homeless encampment grows

Grow a sack and deal with your responsibilities for a change! I’m looking at all of you in city and county leadership.

Stabbing Reported in Camp Bernal

In a story likely to surprise nobody who reads this column regularly, last Friday around 5:30PM, a stabbing was reported somewhere inside Camp Bernal. SCPD and medics responded but when they arrived the victim had apparently left the scene (and so had the person who reportedly stabbed them), so SCPD searched the area for a guy with no shirt and shorts and probably “bleeding like crazy” (according to the initial witness who called it in). It didn’t sound like anyone was arrested, so who knows. Could have been a false alarm. But SCPD took it pretty seriously.

Twenty Three Times and Counting

Saturday night around 11:30PM, a 59 year old transient woman was arrested on the 800 block of Ocean street on a number of charges, including resisting arrest, flashing a weapon, attacking a peace officer, and of course, probation violations. I looked her up. She’s been arrested 23 times (and counting). Isn’t it time to try something different here? I don’t know, maybe keep her in jail longer? Better treatment options? Anything is better than the County Shuffle here.

Looking For His Needles Perhaps?

Monday morning around 8:30AM, a man who was on pre-trial release was arrested after Santa Cruz Sheriff’s deputies responded to the county health services parking lot on Emeline avenue. He was found to be in possession of stolen checks and heroin. He was arrested and taken to county jail. Can we please skip the “pre-trial release” bullshit this time? It will save us time, money, and trouble.

And I heard a rumor (a really good one from a pretty solid source) that there is some consideration being given to moving Camp Bernal somewhere up off Emeline to the county services area, possibly in a parking lot? This is obviously a fast moving story so if I hear any more on this, I’ll discuss in more detail. That would be an interesting “compromise” between the city and county on this. I would like to see the county take more direct ownership here (and control), despite the always missing in action Ryan Coonerty and his fear to take on anything controversial locally. One key component of this is actually moving it out of downtown (this does that). Another is moving it onto county owned property (this does that). So while I wouldn’t wish this on anyone, and I’m sure the neighbors up off Emeline would be horrified, this idea does make some sense in the short term. If nothing else, the junkies won’t have far to crawl to get their free needles from the county. And speaking of the county and their free needles…..

Community Unloads on Bruce McPherson Over Dirty Needles

SC residents finding dirty needles near neighborhoods

First of all, big props and thanks to Damon, Paige, and Big Joe for going and even making the news. Thanks for all you do for your community. Wednesday night, Bruce McPherson from the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors held a meeting at the community room of SCPD to discuss neighbors concerns over the county’s free needle handouts. I refuse to call it an “exchange” because nothing actually needs to be exchanged here. We have kooks just handing them out in Camp Bernal like the Pied Piper of Idiot Compassion. It’s a farce and a serious threat to public safety. I think one city council person (Cummings) showed up. I’m pretty sure Ryan Coonerty was nowhere to be found.

Gift From the Sea (and the county)

Thursday morning around 8:30AM, I heard a report about a bum taken down in front of the Del Mar. SCPD sent multiple units to the scene and finally managed to get him detained and in handcuffs after a scuffle with police. It sounded like he was arrested within the past few days in front of the Asti on Pacific and Laurel. Nothing like your local recidivist acting badly on Pacific Avenue at 8:30 in the morning. Good morning Santa Cruz. And then later Thursday afternoon, I see this!

Same guy! It was worse than I originally thought! Arrested a week ago for FELONY vandalism, out with no bail and no time in jail, and here he is! Turning downtown Santa Cruz into a giant crime scene, thanks to the county jail, the county judges, and an abundance of local stupidity.

Appearances Can Be Deceiving

Friday morning around 11:30AM, a man was arrested for trying to cash a stolen check with a forged signature at the Wells Fargo bank on the 7700 block of Soquel drive. He was arrested for forgery, ID theft, possession of stolen property, possession of a switchblade, and parole violations. More parole violations. Each one is like a stamp of failure by a system we enable.

Arrested at the Ben Lomond Dump

In perhaps the most fitting item this week, Friday morning around 10:30AM, a man was arrested for causing a disturbance at the Ben Lomond Dump on the 9800 block of Newell Creek Road. He was actually arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance. The disturbance was a freebie.

Where’s the Beef?

Saturday night around 5:30PM, witnesses described seeing a couple of transients brawling on the corner of Mission and Bay. One person reported seeing a man beating another with a skateboard. The suspect was described as a transient with a couple of guitars and lots of stuff. Witnesses reported seeing them move their beef into the McDonalds parking lot, where SCPD sent a couple of units. Apparently, the squabble was just between “friends” and nobody wanted to press any charges so nobody was arrested. Maybe they shared a Happy Meal together after SCPD left.

Move It Chalupa

Friday night around 11PM, I heard a report about someone in the drive through at the Taco Bell on Laurel and Pacific who was making threats and trying to fight with an employee and refused to leave the drive through area. The employee locked the window and called SCPD. The person apparently tried to come in the back door but left as SCPD showed up. SCPD pulled the truck over at Laurel and California. His truck registration tags were expired. He was also on probation. Taco Bell refused to press charges.

Mail Thieves Target Boulder Creek Residents

On Friday, people living near Pleasant Way in Boulder Creek woke up to finding their mail boxes opened up and cleared out. Some of that mail was found thrown into a nearby creek along with an empty Amazon box. Are there any camps nearby?

House Fire Displaces Six People in Santa Cruz

Saturday night around 6:30PM, the Santa Cruz Fire Department responded to a report of a home fire on McMillan Drive in Santa Cruz. When they arrived, they found heavy smoke coming from inside the home. Additional crews soon arrived to help extinguish the blaze on the second floor. It took fire fighters about a half hour to put the fire out, and all occupants made it out of the house safely. SCFD classified the fire as an accident.

Santa Cruz Loves a Parade

Or is it a protest? Or a march? It’s mostly a big street party. Last Saturday, I walked in the women’s march downtown. Huge turnout. I’d say a few thousand people walked the route from Cathcart to the clock tower. And the Summit Sisters were rocking the clock tower! A good time seemed to be had by all. Then on Monday, SCPD and Chief Mills and the local NAACP took to Pacific Avenue for a celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King day. Another solid turnout and nice parade. Of course, Barnacle Bob Noise was heard complaining (or was it Sweety Muffin Top?) about how having Chief Mills lead the parade, or even having SCPD organize and sponsor it, was some kind of progressive blasphemy.

The Weekly Seen

Hey, it’s our new “Public Safety Committee”. I’m serious!

Unfiltered

Check out the new podcast, available on SoundCloud. Next new podcast should be coming this Sunday night!

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Categories: The Weekly Dump

22 Comments

The Weekly Dump 1.25.19

  1. Haha! Thanks for the post about the creep that was arrested for the stolen checks. Those were my checks! Too bad I can’t post pics because I’d post the pic of the heroin addict that broke into my house with the actual footage of her removing the checks from my office cabinet. She then sold checks from four of my different checking accounts to various perps including Lawrence J Smith—the perp that was caught at the Wells Fargo branch via a joint effort by myself, the fine folks at Wells Fargo and the SC sheriff.

    I received a call from the bank asking if I had written a check to Mr. Smith and I calmly told her that it was a stolen check, try to stall him while I conference dispatch on my phone. We had a three way with dispatch who quickly sent a deputy to the branch where the perp was showing the teller the image of anotjer one of my checks for $3,500 that he cashed at Chase to validate his legitimacy! The sheriff showed up and took him into custody

    Now check this out: he just got done doing six years in San Quentin for fourteen counts of burglary he committed when he was only 18 yrs old! He got out on parole, got arrested Jan 3 for possession, released Jan 10th and then cashed the first check in Jan 14 at Chase! And where is he now? Catch and release baby! He’s back in the streets!!??? Wtf??

  2. Homeless camps do not belong in neighborhoods or near businesses.
    Isn’t there a lot of county land out at Rountree? And at last count about 60 beds inside too.
    I know a lot of good folks living near Emeline and Grant St. They’ve endured enough.
    Another great piece. Thanks Ben.

      1. People live out there too and don’t want this mess foisted on them. A lot of us choose to live out there because of this crap in town.

        1. And I would share that sentiment if I lived there. I think it’s been shown nobody in the city wants this in their back yard. Otherwise, The River street camp would have found a location and we wouldn’t be dealing with a Camp Bernal right now. The bigger it gets, the hungrier it gets, the more trouble it’s going to inevitably cause. It’s our homegrown, city and county approved, “Little Shop of Horrors”. Feed me Seymour!

  3. yeah to a medium security facility. residential neighborhoods and people trying to go to their minimum wage retail job are not able to deal with middle aged dudes drunk or high on meth. i hope there’s a class action lawsuit in california about this zoning. you know basically anyone who is afraid of being assaulted by a dude on military grade drugs could participate. it feels like a game of russian roulette where will they move it next?

  4. This incredible irony caught by the great site “Keeping it Real,” Thanks Big Joe. The KION TV piece Jan 23 on Camp Ross includes a Camp Ross “spokesman” explaining how upset he and the denzidens of Camp Ross are about how they are perceived. What he fails to mention is that he, himself, is a multiple Felony offender over the years including Armed Robbery, terrorist threats, witness intimidation and probation violations. Santa Cruz City and County, I’m really questioning being a tax paying citizen here. Only in SC.

  5. Ben, I thought your January 20 podcast “Unfiltered” was the most lucid analysis of the intractable and continuing problem of homelessness I’ve ever heard. I wish you could promote this to a broader population perhaps even run it as a special editorial in the Senile? Or added to the next weekly dump ? Have you thought of teaming with them? You are a true expert in the intrinsics of the problem and the only person I’ve evet heard talk about intelligent solutions that might work. The Senile editors doesn’t seem to have a “how to fix” it mentality because your “five point plan” DOES cause problems with the status quo of recycling state money to well-meaning but ineffective Social Services providers. In my view your five point needs broader promotion. 1) I would think a recall campaign would cause focus on the underlying reality that progressives have no ability to solve the Homeless Problem, and 2) that what’s needed is a hard-ass Law and Order pragmatist like you!

      1. I’m serious Ben, I would help you with the recall campaign and get it funded and then the campaign could run “advertorials” in the Senile which would really shake up the pot. You and some like-minded pragmatists could then run as a block to replace the top three most incompetent council members.

        There’s no doubt this is Santa Cruz’s number one problem and that the progressives are never ever going to be able to solve it. There is no libel involved because what you say is true (an absolute defense against defamation) AND the progressives are all public figures. We could change the outlook for Santa Cruz from Hopelessness to Hope.

        We could promote the Orange County solution where the Homeless were ordered to be housed by the county in motels and the homeless camp would be cleared out as they did in Orange County. Otherwise the seven million dollars will be gone into the ineffective system “before you can bat an eye.”

        We also need a Roundtree like solution (which one of your readers suggested) for the chronic drug offenders where they are NOT released until they are proven clean and sober with strong post-release support and mandatory testing. The homeless population is like a big pie chart and a different solution is needed for each piece of the pie. The druggies go to Roundtree, the hard up legitimate people go to motel housing, and the mentally ill go to mandatory residential lockdown under control of the state. The seven million dollars would pay for a lot of our 2400 homeless folks to head into their section of the pie.

        1. Talking about addiction, in a recent podcast interview of musician David Crosby (Byrds, Crosby Stills & Nash) on Alec Baldwin’s show, Cosby stated that what got him clean after 4 or 5 times of going through failed rehab….was prison in Texas. He said they wouldn’t even give out an aspirin and he indicated he was very sick for a short period but that’s when he KNEW he was out of options.

          The lesson may be that with the modern approach of unlimited chances, coddling, program after program, no jail time and addicts smart enough to work the system, I think the tough love approach would help lessen the homeless and drug addiction problems in Santa Cruz. The money is there as a shortening of the chain of agencies with their open chirping mouths waiting to gobble their slice of the social services funds would free up those funds.

          Also where’s Sandy Brown in the photo? The Fabless 4 just sounds better than the Fabless 3.

    1. Good question. Many times (ok countless times), people stopped by SCPD and the Sheriff’s office who are committing or are suspected of committing a crime have outstanding warrants from places outside of Santa Cruz County. It’s up to the other county as to whether they want to pick up the person on that warrant or not. They usually ask, or it could be part of their record or based on the charges on the warrant. But probably a good 90% of the time, the other county will not pick them up. So in that sense, we are now stuck with them. Maybe we need a “companion” program to the local Homeward Bound program (which provides free bus tickets to homeless people wanting to leave town on their own). Maybe we need a “Bum Bus” program that sends anyone with an outstanding warrant in another county that refuses to pick them up back to that county anyways on a bus. Give them a choice, a bus ticket or jail. Now that’s what I call public safety reform!

  6. Ben, there’s excellent breaking news on the homeless front! A Camp Bernal article by Jessica York over at the Senile, takes up about two-thirds of the front page and half the second page of the Sunday paper, which for all of their faults has a readership that has a high percentage of voting and caring. It’s a huge expose of the complete incompetence that’s involved at the City-County level.

    Parks and Recs has put up fences that last for about 20 minutes each day before the camp residents egress to the Riverwalk and the shopping center and Neighbors From the Tannery to various surrounding streets and local businesses are all complaining. Of course one problem with that is that one of the parks and rec supervisors believes in free drugs and prostitution – so where is the incentive to Crackdown – nowhere.

    There’s also an interview with a homeless man from Guatemala which shows that a Nexus exists between open borders and our homeless problem. Where does anyone think these people are going to go when they come to Santa Cruz and can’t find work.

    My bet is that Jessica and the senile editors have listened to your podcast and read the Dump. So I’ll bet they could team with you and let you run a guest editorial on the topic? Or cover a recall campaign if the city council continues to exhibit its ineptitude. Clown Coonerty is reported to be busily applying for 10 million and state funding which will only feed his bloated bureaucracy and fall short of putting these people in their correct part of the pie chart which is 1) homes for the unfortunate homeless or 2) Roundtree for the serious drug addicts or 3) putting ths psych cases into secure lockdown facilities as I suggested earlier.

    10 million dollars will accomplish a lot on those three goals but you can imagine what Coonerty is going to do with it along with our bleeding heart liberal majority on the Santa Cruz City Council. You might want to give the Senile editors a call and see if they can start talking about “Solutions” instead of just reporting on facts. Sooner or later the editors are going to have to have an “As we see it” editorial on homelessness. Perhaps they can plumb your expertise for some reasonable Solutions that seem to escape all the government cronies that we’ve got working for us.

  7. Someone sent me this link to a journal called city journal which deals with policy issues. In the article the author shows the 4 contributors, in his opinion, to the wasting of taxpayer dollars chasing after the homeless and showing how those involved and their compassion and feel good bureaucracy job building empires and thoughts on legalizing all drug proponents has spent so much money annually. The city of Seattle spends, hold onto your seats, a $billion annually on the homeless problem. This homeless problem means fewer tax dollars go to hiring and retaining competent city rulers and employees, having nice amenities like parks which are safe and a city without needles all over.
    https://www.city-journal.org/seattle-homelessness
    read it an recognize your town.

  8. it would be nice to have a community forum for these issues other than nextdoor. the best thing about this site is the lack of censorship. many web browsers are about to install plugins to censor the internet (micrsoft edge already did)

    it would be nice to have a forum where people could post their concerns/solutions for the neighborhood without having to deal with selective censorship. for example, the photo of the guillotine post calling for all local landlords to be beheaded was censored off of nextdoor by nextdoor corporate.

    the local leads dont censor nextdoor. that is all censored by corporate. that guillotine and call for mass violence should have been posted to crime and safety and it should still be up there. the alt left is being hypocritical by calling for mass censorship. i dont believe everything RT posts… but i like being able to tune in to see the propaganda the russians are being fed.

    tech is about to take the internet back to medieval times. it would be nice to have a forum where people could log complaints about their neighborhood park… and the record would stay up. this makes a lawsuit much easier. bullies like to isolate people and pretend events dont happen. the police are not able to file a report for all of the events that happen. an uncensores written record would be very valuable long term.

  9. Well Ben, I finally saw some outrage about the lawlessness tolerated in this community expressed by someone besides you. KION news had a piece about the guy who stabbed someone right downtown I think it was and he turned out to have a miles long rap sheet that included kidnnapping! I fell so sorry for tor the ordinary cop or sheriff who responds to these horrific scenes and the perp is out before the injured is out of the hospital! I wish I knew what to do besides handwringing.

  10. Registered sex offenders are allowed at Louden Community Center and SCPD is aware of it!
    The perverts go to the senior lunch “Meals on Wheels”and then later gawk at all the children playing on the lawn. As a parent…I am appalled!!

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