Follow me, don’t follow me, I’ve got my spine, I’ve got my orange crush! This week, we’re getting ready to move into the Orange tier, SCPD arrests pair for St. Patrick’s Day crime spree, another bum fire lights up the bypass, skidding along skid row, swing and a miss, drunk and disorderly preschool teachers, angels and saints, bums and vagrants, waking up the neighbors, felons with guns, the latest COVID numbers for Santa Cruz County, and the latest scuttlebutt from the Santa Cruz city council.
As Santa Cruz prepares to move into the “orange” tier in the coming weeks, and the recent indications that the Boardwalk will likely re-open in some form in the coming weeks, get ready for the inevitable crush of people returning to Santa Cruz from outside of Santa Cruz. I know the Boardwalk has targeted an April opening, and are currently looking to hire hundreds of seasonal employees. So you can figure by Memorial Day, we’ll be looking more like the old Santa Cruz. And I’m sure the city and county are THRILLED at the prospect of tourist dollars returning to their coffers. It’s all about money! It’s always about money. They can’t spend it fast enough.
Pair Arrested For String of St. Patricks Day Santa Cruz Robberies
Two people were arrested on Thursday afternoon as suspects in a string of robberies that took place over the course of an hour on St. Patrick’s day in and around Santa Cruz, according to the Santa Cruz Police Department. As a result of surveillance footage and multiple leads, detectives identified a 21 year old resident of Santa Cruz County as the suspected armed robber. Detectives spotted him around 4:30PM inside a red pickup truck driving southbound on the 700 block of Ocean St. They did a high risk stop and arrested him without incident. A 28 year old female passenger in the truck was also identified as the driver in the rash of burglaries. Both were charged with robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery. His bail was set at $75K and her bail was set at $50K, and last check both are still in custody.
The Definition of Insanity
Another week another bum fire. This week, we saw another big bum fire happen at basically the same location it happened last week, along the Mission Street bypass adjacent to Highways 1 and 9. Is this going to be a weekly thing here? The new “normal”? I’m happy to say the answer will most likely be no. Thursday morning, police were out there with a massive dumpster cleaning up and clearing people out. The area needs to be cleared out by the beginning of April for a road construction project that could lose federal funding if delayed. So now we know what lights a spark under the ass of the city. Money! And just in time for the new summer tourist season too.
Skidding Along Skid Row
Tuesday afternoon, SCPD responded to the 100 block of Coral Street (aka “Skid Row”) for the usual bum related mischief and in the process of trying to arrest a local bum for trespassing and being drunk in public, the 43 year old skidmark assaults the police officer. And he was on parole! This is how we roll here. He’s still in jail on no bail hold for a felony violation of his parole.
Swing and a Miss
Monday afternoon around 1:30PM, SCPD responded to the 100 block of River Street after getting a report of someone threatening a driver at an ATM with a bat. Nobody was arrested.
Drunk and Disorderly Near Depot Park
Last Saturday night, SCPD responded to the 300 block of Chestnut Street where they arrested a 22 year old female for being drunk in public, resisting arrest, and battery on a peace officer. Her bail was set at $5K but she’s out of jail already. “PTA” baby! Get out of jail free card!
And she lists her occupation as “Preschool Teacher”. Lovely! Her kids are so lucky to have her!
Angels and Saints?
Wednesday afternoon around 1:30PM, SCPD responded to the 100 block of Dakota Avenue, otherwise known as The Great San Lorenzo Park Bum Squat, where they arrested a 35 year old male for having an outstanding felony arrest warrant for intimidating a witness, and they also charged him with assault. I thought all those people living in the park were angels and saints?
More Like Bums and Vagrants
Tuesday afternoon around 1:30PM, SCPD responded to the 100 block of Dakota Avenue, otherwise known as The Great San Lorenzo Park Bum Squat, where they arrested a 29 year old male and charged him with 2 counts of assault with a deadly weapon. His bail was set at $10K and last check he was still in county jail.
Waking Up the Neighbors
Last Friday morning around 8AM, deputies from the Santa Cruz Sheriff’s department responded to the 3000 block of Portola Drive, where they arrested a 49 year old Watsonville man and charged him with burglary, trespassing, arson, vandalism, drug possession, and more. His bail was set at $50K and last check he’s still in county jail.
This Week’s Felons With Guns Story
Last Monday morning around midnight, Watsonville Police responded to the 100 block of Nielson Drive where they arrested a 35 year old male and charged him with a laundry list of charges, including being a felon in possession of a firearm, carrying a concealed weapon in a vehicle, carrying a loaded firearm in a public place, possession of stolen property, and more. His bail was set at $175K and last check he’s still in jail.
The Latest COVID Numbers in Santa Cruz
There have been 15,264 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Santa Cruz County, according to the Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency, with 200 currently active cases. 200 people have died, 456 people have been hospitalized, 3 people are currently hospitalized, and 1 is in the ICU. 14,864 people have recovered from the disease. A total of 122,058 people have tested negative. Santa Cruz County is in the red tier of the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, meaning some non-essential indoor business operations are closed. Its adjusted case rate is at 3.5, and it needs to be at 3.9 or below to move up. It also has a 1.3% positivity rate, and that needs to be at 4.9% or below to move up.
The Latest City Council Scuttlebutt
The Santa Cruz city council met this week. The planning director gave an update on what’s happening to clear out the bum camps along the Mission Street bypass near Highways 1 and 9. CalTrans, the California Highway Patrol and Santa Cruz County have all been involved in discussions of how to get people out of the area before a long planned major highway project starts in April. And it’s tied to federal funding which could be lost if the project gets delayed. So it’s about money! And possibly losing lots of it. Despite the fact we’re losing lots of it now allowing this to happen. Two big fires in the past two weeks. Responses like that waste valuable city resources. CalTrans claims to be taking the lead here, and the city has continued trash removal at the site aided by volunteers.
They also discussed new vending policies for Beach Street. Vendors will be able to apply for a limited number of permits to sell near the the entrance to the municipal wharf. Details are still be worked out. Under the proposed rules being considered, vendors will need additional documentation to be able to legally operate. In addition to a business license, vendors will need a city-issued permit, as well as a county health permit if they are selling food. As part of the application, vendors will need to submit information on proposed operations and agree to comply with the city’s noise ordinance.
The city council gave initial approval to a plan for distributing Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. CDBG funds must be used for programs or projects that benefit low-income residents, so Santa Cruz set neighborhoods in the Beach Flats and Lower Ocean as priority areas. In July, Santa Cruz is set to receive over $600K in CDBG funds. The city wants to allocate just over $235K of that money towards “Homeless Infrastructure Projects, such as resources for homeless encampments”. Just a reminder, this is the COUNTY’s responsibility, not the city’s responsibility. Literally, picking up the county’s trash for them.
Get Your Swagger On!
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