It’s August already? Two more local folks died of the COVID this week. We also had a shooting in the Beach Flats, a bomb scare on Soquel, a couple guys in Watsonville got arrested for sexually abusing kids, a drunk car thief and his pal got arrested off Highway 17, for the turnstiles, the Weekly Seen, flying weenies, suspicious fire on B40, shake rattle and roll, the kitten story we all need right now, city council race updates, open the hair salons, and more!
Two More People Locally Die of Coronavirus
Two more Santa Cruz County residents died from COVID-19 this past week, bringing the known death toll in the county to six. Of the roughly 1,200 cases reported as of Tuesday, about two-thirds were reported in the last two weeks. The county health officer estimates about 100 cases have gone unreported in the last seven to 10 days. The county is currently investigating 20 outbreaks. Here’s a breakdown of the current reported case count:
- Capitola: 34
- Santa Cruz: 202
- Scotts Valley: 27
- Watsonville: 597
- Unincorporated: 208
- Under investigation: 128
Shooting in the Beach Flats Near the Boardwalk
Last Friday afternoon around 5PM, there was an apparent shooting near the area of Beach Street and Third Avenue near the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. The suspects were gone by the time SCPD arrived on scene, but conveniently the suspects in the shooting were stopped earlier by SCPD and let go, so SCPD had their names and information. Multiple types of shell casings were found at the scene by investigators. I haven’t heard of any victims in this case. Investigators think the shooting started as some sort of food fight, where bottles and cans might have also been thrown at each other and evolved into a gun battle.
Bomb Scare on Soquel Avenue
Thursday afternoon, deputies from the Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Department responded to the 1200 block of Soquel Avenue for a report of an individual in crisis. After arriving, deputies conducted a traffic stop on the person and noticed what appeared to be a pipe bomb located on a seat in the car. The area was evacuated and the local bomb squad was called in to investigate the device. After reviewing the device they determined the object was not explosive.
Two Men Arrested for Suspected Child Sex Abuse in Watsonville
Last Friday, Watsonville Police arrested two men in unrelated child sex abuse cases. In the first case, a 28 year old male was arrested by Watsonville police early Friday on suspicion of five felonies charges related to sex crimes involving a minor, including a charge involving a child three years old or younger. His bail was set at $50K. Seriously? $50K? For raping a toddler? WTF is wrong with this picture and town? He’s been arrested locally at least 14 times since 2014. He’s out of jail already. In another apparently unrelated case, a 70 year old male was arrested on suspicion of continuous sexual abuse of a child, lewd and lascivious acts with a child younger than 14 years. Three different victims reported continuous abuse from the suspect. His bail was set at $250K and he’s still in jail. Hopefully for the rest of his miserable life.
Drunk Car Thief Arrested After Crashing on Highway 17
Two men were arrested in Santa Cruz County last Thursday morning after leaving the scene of a crash involving a stolen car, according to reports from the local California Highway Patrol. One man was driving on north Highway 17 around 5AM when he made an illegal U-turn at Vine Hill Road. He hit a 49 year old Watsonville man driving southbound on the highway. When CHP officers arrived, they found two men running off into the woods. A nearby resident contacted CHP after spotting two men in their bushes. A 25 year old Manteca man was arrested on suspicion of being in possession of a stolen car, hit-and-run, driving under the influence and resisting arrest. A 38 year old San Jose man was arrested on suspicion of possessing a stolen car and resisting arrest. A 30 year old Boulder Creek woman who was a passenger in the drunk’s car stayed at the scene and was hospitalized with minor injuries.
For the Turnstiles
Tuesday night around 8PM, Santa Cruz Police responded to the 100 block of Trescony where they arrested a 30 year old male for burglary, grand theft, trespassing, drug possession, and being drunk in public. The Sheriff didn’t want him in his jail and told him to get lost, kicking him to the curb after a “promise to appear”. He’s probably passed out in San Lorenzo park. He’s been arrested at least 11 times since 2014 locally. It’s the turnstile!
The Weekly Seen
Local assholes were out and about busy trashing SCPD last Friday night. No pride.
Weenies Were Flying on Beach Street
This past Saturday afternoon, there was an altercation on Beach Street between a street vendor and the owner of a restaurant across the street. According to witnesses, the owner of a pizza restaurant across from the boardwalk approached a street vendor and began harassing her before pushing over her hot dog cart. A cell phone video captured a shoving match which followed in the moments after the cart was knocked over.
A police report was filed. In the report, one of the restaurants alleges retaliation with vandalism of their outdoor furniture. The street vendors say they’re fed up with the way they have been treated.A GoFundMe has been started for the street vendor who sells hot dogs. The purpose of the fundraiser is to raise enough money for the vendor to purchase a food cart that can meet county regulations for a permit.
Suspicious Fire Burns Eucalyptus Grove Off Branciforte
Thursday afternoon around 3:30PM, the Santa Cruz Fire Department responded to a report of eucalyptus trees burning near South Branciforte Drive and Ocean View Way. When the fire was reported, crews were told neighbors on Buena Vista Drive could see the fire. When firefighters arrived, they found about a quarter of an acre burning. The fire was extinguished in about 30 minutes. The fire department said it had spread up several trees, but did not spread to any structures. Investigators said the cause of the fire is still undetermined, but it is considered suspicious. Two words. “Bum Camp”. That area is littered (literally) with illegal bum camps in the woods.
Shake Rattle and Roll
Thursday morning around 9AM, we apparently had a little earthquake just north of Santa Cruz. A 3.2 magnitude earthquake registered 13 miles west of Bonny Doon, according to the the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The tremor was reportedly felt in Santa Cruz and as far north as San Mateo. No injuries or damages have been reported.
The Kitten Rescue Story We All Need Right Now!
A small kitten had to be rescued off Highway 1 near Morrissey Boulevard last Friday after it was found scared and nestled against the center divide. The Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter says the kitten was reported by someone driving along the highway Friday morning. An animal shelter officer saw the gray kitten, hunkered down and scared as cars and trucks sped by.CHP assisted in shutting down the highway as the shelter officer removed the cat from the area. The officer safely impounded the cat which is now sitting far away from the highway at the county animal shelter.
The Field is Set
Today was the final day to submit paperwork to run for the Santa Cruz city council. Pretty much the same group as last week. Richelle is confirmed out. She couldn’t get the machine support necessary to make an effective run. That’s how the game is played around here!
The slates are starting to form. All you have to do is look at their endorsement pages and when you see the same names over and over, you might as well just stamp “Machine Backed” on their forehead. For future reference here, I’ll label each candidate with one of 4 labels:
- MMB: Moderate Machine Backed
- PMB: Progressive Machine Backed
- OTOLI: On The Outside Looking In
- GLFA: Grifter Looking For Attention
So here are some random thoughts, cheap shots, and bon mots:
- Martine Watkins (MMB): She’s not especially strong at anything but she’s pretty moderate about everything that matters. And she ran a (relatively) tight ship during meetings as mayor.
- Sandy Brown (PMB): If she’s at the top of their ticket, it’s a pretty weak and desperate field this time around. In her four years on the council, she’s proven herself to be not much more than a Krohn/Glover lackey. She’s a follower not a leader. She’s a willing progressive vote if you tell her how to vote. She’s a hot mess. She’s been a hot mess for 4 years. By herself, she talks a lot in circles (and gets lost), but she’s pretty harmless. She’s certainly less offensive when she’s not just rubber stamping Krohn or Glover’s bullshit.
- Sonja Brunner (MMB): Don’t know much but I’m learning. She’s part of the Downtown Association so I guess she supports local businesses and that’s a much needed voice. The machine obviously likes her. I think she would actually do fine. She seems smart, grounded, and in it for the right reasons.
- Kayla Kumar (PMB): I guess she’s part of the slate. She’s the development director of “Food, What?!”, a local non-profit. She’s also worked with Barrios Unidos, another local non-profit. So she’s part of the homeless industrial complex basically. She’s backed by the local socialist democrats.
- Maria Cadenas: She’s solidly far left progressive in her views. She’s also endorsed by basically the whole Coonerty family. So it’s hard to say where she falls on the spectrum. Somewhere in the middle maybe? She’s also an Executive Director of a local non-profit. I’m seeing a pattern here.
- Kelsey Hill (PMB): She was an editor at City on a Hill Press, works for the Romero Institute. Endorsed by the fake Santa Cruz For Bernie group.
- Shebreh Kalantari-Johnson (MMB): This is what a moderate machine backed candidate looks like. Even Don Lane endorses her. She’s obviously solid and well liked by the mainstream “local influencers” and will bring their money and backing.
- Elizabeth K. Conlan: “We’re under construction. Please check back for an update soon.”
- Bad Mom (GLFA): Nope.
Open the Hair Salons!
They are getting an unfair shake from the state. Sign their petition!
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