Sticking a Fork in TOLO
This past Tuesday, the Santa Cruz City Council met to discuss yet again this crazy little thing called “TOLO”. Can we just call it “ad nauseam”? Widespread community outrage over the dumbass idea to just dump the local homeless everywhere in the community was hardly surprising. Mayor Donna Meyers couldn’t walk this back fast enough. But she did her best at damage control and I give her credit for reaching out to people in the community personally, including a good friend of mine.
After deciding in a 5-2 vote on Tuesday to not implement an ordinance adopted back in March that would have limited where homeless residents could sleep overnight, my question is why wasn’t this unanimous? Does this mean the 2 people who voted no here (Cummings and Brown) actually wanted the TOLO ordinance? Or is this so politically motivated, they can’t see how dumb this looks for them. City officials will outline a new plan intended to secure city owned properties as sleeping spaces and provide resources for the homeless. Haven’t we tried this before? Yup. What was the problem then? Nobody want it next door to them. I’m predicting a pretty similar reaction here. Planning will take a few months and staff is expected to come back on May 11th with a new ordinance. The Beavis and Butler show rolls on. To be continued.
Driver Fleeing Police Crashes and Kills Passenger at Morrissey and Highway 1
Tuesday night, a driver trying to evade Santa Cruz police killed a passenger in their car after crashing into a traffic barrier at the Morrissey offramp to Highway 1. Officers with the California Highway Patrol saw the vehicle driving south at a high rate of speed on Highway 1 near Dimeo Lane just outside of Santa Cruz city limits north of the city. After trying to make a stop on the vehicle, the driver failed to pull over and continued speeding on Mission Street. Police tried to stop the vehicle at Highway 1 and State Route 9, but the CHP said the vehicle continued on Highway 1. When the driver tried to exit on Morrissey, the vehicle hit a curb before running into a metal guardrail and catching fire. Four San Jose residents were in the vehicle, and the 19 year old driver tried to run away before police caught him. The passenger in the front seat was able to get out on their own, but the two people in the back seats had to be extricated and a 19 year old female in the back seat died at the scene. After the driver was treated, he was arrested and charged with felony DUI, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, felony hit and run and felony evading a peace officer.
Turnstiler of the Week
Tuesday morning around 9AM, Santa Cruz Police responded to the 700 block of North Branciforte Avenue after getting reports of a man holding a knife, yelling, and charging at passing vehicles. When police arrived, they recognized the man as a 39 year old man who had an outstanding felony parole warrant for his arrest. He fled the area on foot as police arrived but officers caught up with him running on the 500 block of Water Street. The vagrant still refused to comply with police, waving his knife and even using an innocent bystander as a shield between him and the officers. Officers finally tased him, which made him comply. He was arrested and booked him into the Santa Cruz County Jail for resisting arrest, kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, and of course the ever present, ever ubiquitous FELONY VIOLATION OF PAROLE. Apparently he’s been arrested 26 times locally. He’s currently sitting in county jail after his bail was increased to $200K. They could have saved us all a lot of time and trouble by just keeping this asshole in jail last year.
Cervezas and Machetes
Sunday night around 6PM, SCPD responded to a local business on the 500 block of Laurel Street after getting a report of a male who entered the business and stole a case of beer before threatening employees with a machete and leaving. Nobody has been arrested.
The Usual Vagrancy Along Skid Row
Saturday night around 9:30PM, reports came in about a male attempting to stab someone with a knife near the homeless shelter at 115 Coral Street, before walking away down River Street. SCPD caught up with the suspect near River and Madrone. The person he attempted to stab was apparently a security guard at the shelter, who pepper sprayed the suspect. The suspect isn’t just familiar to police, he’s familiar to me! I see this guy’s name in the arrest logs seemingly every freaking week.
This Week’s Felon With a Gun Story
Last Friday, Santa Cruz Sheriff’s deputies tried to make a traffic stop last Friday when the driver ran from deputies and climbed on a nearby roof, hopping through several backyards trying to get away. With the help of SCPD, a perimeter was set and deputies found the man in a nearby backyard. During the investigation, it was determined the man was a felon on probation, and he had a loaded firearm along with body armor and high capacity magazines. He was booked into jail on weapons charges and that violating probation. Last check he’s still in jail with bail set at $25K.
Man With Knife Arrested Downtown After Making Threats
Last Thursday around 3:30PM, SCPD responded to a location on Cedar Street near Elm after getting reports of a man with a large knife threatening someone. The man then reportedly barricaded himself in a car that wasn’t his. When police arrived, the man refused to get out of the vehicle, and crisis negotiators and a county mental health liaison as well as a detective were able to eventually come out and they took him into custody without further incident. The 73 year old male is facing felony criminal threats and other misdemeanor charges.
The Tourists Are Back!
Sunday afternoon around 2PM, SCPD responded to the 400 block of Beach Street after getting reports of a disturbance. They arrested a 40 year old Fresno woman and charged her with trespassing and battery.
Tickets are Toilet Paper
Monday morning around 9:30AM, SCPD responded to the 100 block of Felker Street where they “cited and released” three different guys for possession of heroin and having outstanding warrants. I don’t quite get the concept of giving someone a ticket for something, then when they fail to show up in court, you give them another ticket for not showing up. I’d call that pretty stupid and dysfunctional. But that’s exactly what we’ve got here! And Felker Street, vying for the title of the “New Skid Row”, with their “Hells Trail” bum camp. “Heroin Highway”. The trail to hell is literally burning with bad intentions and idiot compassion. See below!
The Weekly Dumpster Fire
Last Friday night, we had another big old bumfire down near Felker Street along the freeway.
Fire in the hole!
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Cracked me up with “tourists are back”.
My son told me of the city of San Diego which was having a similar problem with numerous drug addicts living outside in tents and the usual crime that came with it.According to my son the police had their hands tied when they attempted to remove them from the street since there was a city ordinance that stated that you couldn’t forcibly remove people from the street without providing them shelter.So the city of San Diego provided housing for all the people living outside and police could now legally enforce the law and not allow anyone to be outside,as a result within months the vast majority of these people left San Diego for LA…meaning that they rather be outside free to do drugs and whatever else then be housed..so supposedly that is how San Diego rid itself of this problem…p.s.you will notice that I didn’t use the term “homeless “.mainly because this term is inappropriate…homeless people are you and I who can become homeless due to increase in rent and being unable to pay,loss of job, illness…etc..the issue with Santa Cruz’s problem is drug use and mental illness.
Thank you !
You provide all information that the community needs to know, and give insight to the issues that need the community to take action !!
Your the man !!
You are correct. How many times have we seen, in Ben’s postings,pix of handfuls of used needles? About a million? These bum aren’t just home less, they’re useless. They have no reason to change. So they don’t need to be cared for they need to be made to pay attention. The retro hippies interested in helping these bums are the real problem.
He is an idea,, go back to how it used to be done. When someone is found to be violating their parole or when someone is found to have warrants, they should be detained for 72 hours and then brought before a judge.
The 72 hour hold would be a huge deterrent for drug addicts. It might even have the effect of driving some of them out of our community.
Maria you are exactly right that’s what council was trying to do here with TOLO.
Unfortunately radical forces using nimby’s like Branciforte to complain now we have nothing.
Making it uncomfortable here is exactly the trick? does everybody get it now!!
No, Tom, I don’t think they do.
Like Branciforte?!? Yes, blame it on the smallest neighborhood, which participated in one Zoom meeting, and not on a misguided ordinance. I did not petition or write letters against using Depot Park parking lot, and other parking lots a few years ago. There are no great choices, so we are back to the first staff recommendation.
It’s just a funny thing., week after week the city wonders what to do with the homeless people. I always wonder what input we can have from people in the community. What do the people of this community think may be the answer? I know of many programs around the country where people are making a dent in this issue. My take is that its a national problem created by the ever longing gap between the rich and the poor. Why can’t we as a nation figure this out. maybe a lottery for some of these issues or teaching people not just how to eat but to grow there own food.
Ha ha, Beavis and Butler.