I thought this was supposed to be the “slow” time of the year in Santa Cruz? The “off season”, with the Boardwalk mostly closed and a fraction of the summer tourist traffic. It’s never slow or boring here. This week, we’ve got a double stabbing downtown and a suspect finally arrested for attempted murder, we’ve got a woman shot and killed in Aptos along with two others who were shot and stabbed at the same location, we’ve got the usual recidivist stories about probation failure, tourists from Livermore, low budget thieves, cornholed in Soquel, nude motorcyclists cruise through downtown, Coach Creeper, vaccination fraud, Jerry Brown hates public safety, the Weekly Seen, Weekly Shoutouts, Unfiltered, and more!

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Double Stabbing in Downtown Santa Cruz

Last Friday night around 11:30PM, there were 2 related stabbings downtown.  One stabbing happened on Pacific avenue near the Metro, where a man was stabbed in the head. A second related stabbing victim was found a few blocks away suffering from a stab wound to the neck. One victim was flown to a trauma center over the hill and the other was driven to a trauma center in San Jose. SCPD identified the 26 year old suspect through surveillance video and witness statements, and put out an arrest warrant for the suspect, who was being charged with assault with a deadly weapon and attempted murder. Last Tuesday morning, SCPD swarmed the MAH and Abbott Square after he was reportedly seen in a bathroom there, but that turned out to be a wrong identification. Then later that afternoon, I heard about an incident involving the Sheriff’s department that possibly involved a sighting of this guy off Sequoia near Winkle Park. He was finally arrested around 3:30PM on Tuesday afternoon off of Thurber Lane.

Over the past six years, court records show the suspect has been arrested at least 10 times previously. He was previously charged with assault with a deadly weapon and unlawful fighting in public, but the court dismissed the charges. He’s been arrested on a felony fraud case. He was arrested less than a year ago for felony assault and kidnaping an elderly person with intent to rape or rob along with robbery and making criminal threats. Charged with five separate charges, three of them were dismissed by a local judge. At one point, he was sentenced to 6 months in jail, but was out of custody in June and sentenced to 36 months probation. Probation. The gift that keeps on giving us guys like this. And why is it the Chief loves to get in front of the camera until something like this happens? And has anyone seen or heard from Martin Bernal lately? We only pay him about a quarter of a million dollars a year to run this city. I see a lot more hide than run.

Stabbing and Shooting in Aptos Hills

Wednesday afternoon around 4:30PM, a female was shot to death, and two males were shot and or stabbed at a home on the 3100 block of Trout Gulch Road in Aptos. When deputies arrived on scene, they had to force themselves into the house, where they found three victims along with multiple weapons. All 3 victims lived at the location. It sounds like the male shooter was sent to the hospital for his injuries, but will be arrested after his release. It doesn’t sound like this was a random act, or a break in. It sounds like this might have involved some kind of personal relationships between the three victims. I’ve heard the woman was married to the suspected shooter, and possibly her ex lived in a back house on the property and tried to intervene in some kind of dispute and was shot as well. But this isn’t verified. I would call this a tragic, isolated incident.

If at First You Don’t Succeed

Try try again. A Santa Cruz deputy was on patrol along Soquel Drive last weekend when he spotted a male he knew to be on probation, driving a U-Haul van. When the Deputy stopped the van, the man attempted to run away on foot through traffic but was hit by a passing motorist. He wasn’t seriously injured but it allowed the deputy to catch up to him. He had multiple warrants for his arrest and was taken into custody.

Just a “Tourist” Visiting From Livermore

A 22 year old man from “Livermore” (according to the official report) was arrested on Friday for identity theft charges. Deputies were called out after neighbors noticed the man acting suspiciously in a Soquel neighborhood. They found the suspect, who is on probation, with a number of stolen items in his possession. He was arrested and booked into the Jail. He’s not living in Livermore. He’s living on our streets. Or in Camp Bernal most likely. He’s been arrested here 8 times since 2017.

On a Low Budget

Friday night around 10PM, Santa Cruz Sheriff’s deputies arrested someone with an outstanding warrant and on probation at a fleabag motel on the 100 block of San Lorenzo Boulevard. In the room they found a credit card embosser, credit cards, and identification cards for other people. They were arrested for identity theft and the warrant. With all those fake credit cards, why the hell are you staying at the Bedbug Inn?

Cornholed in Soquel

Monday afternoon around 5PM, Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the 3700 block of Vista Drive in Soquel after a woman reported that someone stole a pair of “cornhole boards” from her backyard. The loss was estimated to be about $100, and investigators determined there was insufficient evidence for further investigation.

Nude Motorcyclists Take Over Downtown Santa Cruz

Saturday night around 8PM, I heard a report that there were 10-15 nude motorcyclists flashing their parts along Beach street near the Boardwalk. It was all part of the annual “Naked Ride”, hosted by the Vampires Motorcycle Club. Nothing to see here! Literally.

Coach Creeper Arrested in Watsonville

A Watsonville assistant soccer coach was arrested last week for soliciting sexual acts from underage players and sending them explicit photos. A 15 year old student at Pajaro Valley High School said her soccer coach sent her and a friend an explicit photo through social media. The 18 year old suspect is not a coach at the school, but apparently works for a local soccer league. During the investigation, detectives determined that he was soliciting sexual acts from the girls as well. He was arrested and booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail for contacting a minor to commit a felony and sending sexually explicit photos to a minor.

County Health Chief Accuses Local Doctors of Fraudulent Exemptions

In a recent KION article, I saw our local county health services head accuse a number of doctors of signing off on vaccination exemptions for children who do not meet the criteria. Dr. Arnold Leff claimed locally that we have doctors in the community who are giving medical exceptions to various children’s parents,  putting local kids at huge risk for getting measles and other serious diseases. Almost four years ago, Governor Brown signed a law making vaccines mandatory for kids attending daycare, preschool and K-12 schools. Previous to this law, parents could opt out of having their child vaccinated for “personal or religious beliefs”. Apparently the number of medical exemptions has increased significantly, and according to Leff, this is in large part due to doctors breaking the law by providing unsubstantiated medical exemptions. The County health department says they know of some of the doctors who are bending the rules and are looking at different ways to stop this from happening. “Bending the rules”? Is that how the county sees this? When an outbreak of Measles strikes our local schools, is that because of the county “bending the rules” to allow it to happen?

Jerry Brown Wants to Set This Santa Cruz Killer Free

Back in 1998, a woman and her three friends entered the home of a man in Watsonville, where they tied him up and tortured him for hours before finally stabbing him to death. They took the man’s liquor, cash and other valuables, and went to a hotel room in Santa Cruz and had a party. They eventually ended up in Florida, where they were caught and sent to prison. I know Moonbeam has his fans but what does he have against public safety? Does he have so little empathy for the family of this victim to just callously set the man who killed and tortured a member of their family free? Sounds like it.

More on this story from KION.

The Weekly Seen

Camp Bernal Porta Potty. 

Weekly Shoutouts

So I heard Old Man Bratton has been having some health issues recently. I’m not sure how many people know this (probably only one or two) but before I ever started this thing, he was one of the original inspirations and muses for me while conceptualizing what I wanted to do with “Santa Mierda”. I wanted to be the counter point to his pointless. I wanted to sort of capture some of what he did well (pontificate on local news and politics) and make a better, more moderate column. I think my top 4 inspiration muses here would be Herb Caen, Marc Maron, Garrison Keillor, and Bratton, with a side of Ray Ratto. Some combination of that. Get well soon.

And speaking of health issues, I also heard a name I haven’t heard in a while died this week. He was a well known local bike thief. I’m not gonna say his name. That’s not important. He probably stole and chopped up literally hundreds of bikes in the city, mostly around the downtown area. I heard he died somewhere near or along Coral street. That seems appropriate. It’s interesting the reaction I’ve heard from friends about his death. A couple people gloated or snarked about it (I expected nothing less in his case) but many were just kind of sad, over how much failure was involved here. Personally, I didn’t know the guy, but I certainly knew who he was and saw him often around downtown, usually with a couple bikes in tow. He was basically a product of our failed system here, our failed status quo. I feel nothing over his death. I’m not happy or sad. I just don’t care. He sacrificed any empathy I had here a long time ago. What made me sad was seeing that little puppy out in the rain and mud on that local news story on Camp Bernal.

Unfiltered

Check out the new podcast, available on SoundCloud. And Apple Music. And Spotify. It’s free so check it out and give it a listen!

Next new podcast should be coming this Sunday night!

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16 Comments

The Weekly Dump 2.1.19

    1. Which scumbag? We have a number to choose from. The stabbing guy is still in jail as far as I know. Same with the Aptos shooter. I don’t think either will getting out on bail.

  1. I love getting the Santa Mierda. Even though I don’t share all of your opinions (which is great, because I think rational, informed discourse is the backbone of a strong community), I have to point out what I believe to be a moral misstep in this week’s dump. You mentioned Garrison Keillor as someone aspirational, and I feel very strongly that his history of inappropriate behavior towards female subordinates should preclude him from that kind of praise. I have found your publication to be egalitarian and committed to transparency and accountability since I started subscribing (a couple years ago?), and frankly, would not have brought this up did I not hold you in high regard. 

    Thank you for reading.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting Carrie. As for Keillor, it wasn’t so much the person that was the inspiration and muse but his radio show. The way he spun tales with quirky, colorful, small town local characters that made up the fabric of his show. We have no shortage of quirky, colorful characters that make up the fabric of our town. That was the muse.

  2. “The Weekly Seen” is fast becoming my favorite section (A picture is worth a thousand words).

    I love this week’s housekeeping rules for the Illegal Camp. Maybe the City should copy those rules verbatim and post ’em outside EVERY public restroom they maintain?
    Thanks for that Ben.

  3. Yes. The Honorable Mr. Bratton was observed by me in the waiting room of a local high-capability medical facility after he confirmed his appointment at the reception area. Have no idea what he was being seen or tested for, but I wish him well. I used to call him “The Guru of the Cooper House”, back when downtown Santa Cruz was a safe and enjoyable place to spend time 😐

  4. summer is all the tourism… winter is when all the creepers from all over the country drop in to camp, loot, and drug deal for the months its too cold everywhere else… santa cruz, where we pay creepers to camp all winter long….

    “get back in the soup kitchen, woman” ~ area creeper

    “no thx :)” ~ area woman

    i dont want to know who spent 10 mins writing an essay for a bunch of 40 year old drug dealers telling them how to use a toilet. how much more codependent does it get!

  5. The writing on the Porta-Potty wall. Priceless. That essay describes exactly why most of those people end up in Camp Bernal. Raised by wolves, no self respect, no decency. It also supports that fact that most of those in the camp are addicts. A fact, no one who appreciates the truth can deny. Drugs are bad kids. Camp Bernal is a daily reminder.

  6. Does anyone know anything about the loud boom followed by sirens yesterday ( Thursday, Jan 31, 2019) around 6 pm heard on the Eastside of Santa Cruz?

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