Mother misled investigators about location of drownings, authorities say
May 13, 2013 (Mt. Helix) --A one-year-old girl is dead and her two-year-old brother have died after their mother awoke this morning and found both children unconscious in a swimming pool. The family had been staying at the residence on Mt. Helix at 10011 Sunset Avenue in unincorporated La Mesa.
The mother pulled the children from the pool with help from her friend and drove to La Mesa Fire Station #13 for assistance. “After arrival at the fire station, the friend ran away and has not been located,” Lt Gle,n Giannantonio with the San Diego Sheriff’s Homicide Detail reported.
May 13,2013 (La Mesa)—Late Thursday night, two customers were robbed at gunpoint while using ATM cash machines in La Mesa.
According to La Mesa Police, the first incident occurred at 10:50 p.m. at the Wells Fargo Bank, 5610 Lake Murray Blvd. A male customer using the ATM was approached by a man asking for change. When told the customer had no change, the man pulled a gun and demanded the man’s wallet before fleeing.
Close to midnight, a woman depositing money at an ATM at the Grossmont Center Bank of America was robbed by a gunman who demanded cash. She gave him money and he fled east.
By Janis Mork
May 11, 2013 (La Mesa)- “From Collier To Carrefour”, a fundraiser held April 28 at Collier Park, raised funds to send young adult leaders to a summer camp in Carrefour, Haiti through New Format, a Bible study for young adults that is part of Journey Community Church.
May 8, 2013 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Police Sergeant Bret Richards was injured early this morning when a stolen vehicle abandoned following a pursuit rolled backward, dragging the officer over 50 feet down Maryland Avenue. Police still seek the suspect, who was not apprehended.
Celebration Aims to Get 100,000 to Support Fair Trade
May 1, 2013 (La Mesa) - La Mesa Fair Trade and San Diego Fair Trade will hold a Fair Trade Day on Saturday, May 11 in celebration of World Fair Trade Day. N. Americans will gather from May 4-19, to invite friends, coworkers and neighbors to participate in Fair Trade activities for World Fair Trade Day, the largest Fair Trade event of the year. Participants will support trade justice and celebrate the producers, businesses and advocates who practice Fair Trade.
April 28, 2013 (La Mesa) -- Responding to a report of a fight last night in the 5900 block of Severin Drive, La Mesa Police officers arrived and found that the fight was actually an altercation between liquor store employees and suspects who reportedly stole alcohol. The employees chased the four suspects, two men and two women, out of the store and a fight ensued.
Both employees were hit in the face by the two male suspects and sustained bruising, but refused medical attention. The loss was a bottle of alcohol.
By Miriam Raftery
Photos courtesy ECM news partner 10 News and Heartland Fire
April 26, 2013 (La Mesa)—Jackson Pavlicek of La Mesa is under arrest for reckless burning of property. According to La Mesa Police, Pavlicek extinguished a cigarette in the backyard of a home in the 9600 block Dillon Drive on the Grossmont Knoll, igniting dry brush. The fire quickly spread to the house and also damaged the roof of a neighboring home, as well as trees and fences.
Heartland Fire & Rescue crews from La Mesa, Lemon Grove and El Cajon, as well as units from Santee, San Diego and Cal Fire, had the fire fully contained in about one hour. The blaze sent smoke billowing forth that was visible from State Route 125.
April 30, 2013 (La Mesa)—Emmy award-wining comedian Russ T. Nailz, known for his apperances on TV and radio, will headline Brew Ha Ha’s comedy show Wednesday, May 1. The fun starts with a mixer at 6, followed by showtime from 7:30-9 p.m. at Haritna, 7303 El Cajon Blvd. in La Mesa.
There is no cover charge and no drink minimum. Mediterranean food is available at the restaurant, which was voted #1 in San Diego by A-List.
Some adult language; 13 and up admitted with adult. Reservations highly recommended.
April 25, 2013 (La Mesa)—Three robbers, one armed with a handgun, held up the Los Piños Taco Shop at 5660 Lake Murray Boulevard in La Mesa last night at approximately 9:52 p.m. They remain at large despite a search by the Sheriff’s ASTREA helicopter and a canine unit.
All three are described as African-American men in their late teens or early 20s, wearing bandanas over their faces. Each was approximately 5’10 and weighs around 165 pounds. One wore eye glasses and another had a dark gray hooded sweatshirt. All wore dark clothing.
April 24, 2013 (La Mesa)--Euene Rentfrow, reported missing April 22 in La Mesa, has been located in Escondido.
La Mesa Police had sought public help to find Rentfrow, who suffers from dementia. Rentfrow, 72, had been seen at San Diego RV, 7407 Alvarado Road. He was wearing a red and blue flannel shirt and camouflage pants.
April 24, 2013 (La Mesa) – The Lake Jennings March Photo Contest garnered 83 spectacular entries from individuals throughout Southern California and Arizona, from age 8 and older. Photographers roamed the banks, paddled into the deep, hung out in Hermit Cove, watched the wild life, and clicked shutters. Winning entries were selected in both the Youth and Adult categories. Photos can be viewed on the Helix Water District or Lake Jennings’ Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.519785861417321.1073741828.301972993198610&type=1#!/media/set/?set=a.519785861417321.1073741828.301972993198610&type=1
April 23, 2013 (La Mesa) – A 64-year-old man has died after being pinned between a car and an RV. La Mesa Police responded to a 9-1-1- call reporting am an run over by a vehicle in the 4400 block of Dale Avenue.
Upon arrival they found the victim unconscious after being pinned between the two vehicles. He succumbed to his injuries at the scene.
Daughters of the Appalachians debuts April 25-27
By Miriam Raftery
April 13, 2013 (La Mesa) – A 76-year tradition returns to La Mesa with the revival of the Lamplighters Community Theatre. On April 25-27, the group will present “Daughters of the Appalachians” in the Lamplighters’ first performance since 2006, when the old theater was torn down to make way for the new La Mesa police station.
The theatrical group was founded back in 1937, originally known as the La Mesa Little Theatre. In 1976, the organization became Lamplighters Community Theatre, performing in the Ben Polak Fine Arts Center until its demolition force the limelight to go dark. But now , like a phoenix, the group has found new life—and a new theater is rising in La Mesa, a city which just celebrated its centennial. The new Lamplighters theatrical performances will take place at the La Mesa Village Center, 5915 Severin Drive in La Mesa, at the corner of Severin and Amaya drives.
April 20, 2013 (La Mesa) – On April 19 at 2:37 a.m., a masked subject approached the front doors of the Circle-K convenience store, located at 8899 La Mesa Boulevard, and attempted to force his way inside the store. The suspect’s attempts to enter the store were foiled as the clerk inside had previously locked the doors while stocking shelves.
The suspect fled the scene of the robbery attempt on foot. He was last seen running east in the area of 8900 Grossmont Boulevard towards the area of SR-125. The suspect was described as an unknown race male, stocky build, 5 feet 8 inches to 6 feet tall. The suspect was wearing a red and black wrestler’s mask with silver accents. He was also wearing a gray sweatshirt with “San Diego” embroidered on the chest and blue jeans. It is unclear if the suspect was armed in this incident.
April 18, 2013 (La Mesa) – Biz Center Art, the art gallery in residence at the La Mesa Biz Center, is featuring art based on the idea of "POSSIBILITIES", what is possible in the creative mind of an artist with an opening reception from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 20th. Local artists' work will be shown, as well as our feature artist Peter Hammar, a New York artist from Stockholm Sweden. There will also be work displayed by the STAR program, survivors of trafficking.
The "Possibilities" opening is a fundraiser for STAT (Soroptimists Together Against Trafficking) program. Representatives will be on hand to discuss their projects and there will be a raffle of art by Biz Center artists as well as various services by tenants of the La Mesa Biz Center.
By Miriam Raftery
April 17, 2013 (La Mesa) – Community members are invited to support arts programs in local schools on May 2, 2013 from 5-8:30 p.m. when winners of the Golden Artistry Jewelry Design competition will be unveiled at the La Mesa Community Center’s Arbor Room, 4975 Memorial Drive in La Mesa.
Students from the Grossmont Union High School District compete annually in the competition sponsored by Golden Artistry. The program benefits arts programs in GUHSD schools. The winning design will be made into a dazzling piece of jewelry by master goldsmith Terry Whyte. You can vote for the Community’s Choice Award; this year’s theme is “growth.” View finalists: http://goldenartistrydesigncompetition.webstarts.com/
“When I was exposed to metalsmithing, it seemed accidental. I saw a professor silver solder a strip of silver into a ring form, and I knew I had to try to make a ring,” says Whyte. Three weeks after completing his first ring, he recalls, “I was in business. Nearly three years later, I was accepted into an apprenticeship situation with an English goldsmith.”
April 12, 2013 (San Diego's East County) -- The cause of today's spot fires along Interstate 8 was accidental, says Heartland Fire spoksman Sonny Saghera. Heartland responded to reports of several small fires along westbound I-8 from West Main Street in El Cajon to Severin Drive in La Meas around 1 p.m. today.
Heartland Fire & Rescue units from La Mesa and El Cajon, assisted by engines from Cal Fire and Santee, were dispatched to contain the four individual fires approximately 100 yards apart from each other. A structure on Murray Drive in La Mesa was briefly threatened, but fire crews aggressively attacked the flames to keep them along the freeway’s shoulder.
March 31, 2013 (La Mesa) – Last Wednesday, La Mesa Police Detective Sean Snow arrested Nikolas Aledam, 29, of San Diego for a series of vehicle burglaries mainly targeted at Ford Rangers. Aledam taken into custody at the courthouse when he showed up for an unrelated court appearance. Police believe he is responsible for over 18 vehicle burglaries in La Mesa and numerous others in the San Diego County area.
FEDERAL SEQUESTRATION CUTS HIT HARD IN LA MESA; CITY ELIMINATES MOST PUBLIC SERVICES FOR ELDERLY AND YOUNG PEOPLE
March 27, 2013 (La Mesa)—The federal government has slashed Community Development Block Grant funding for La Mesa from $800,000 a few years ago down to just $350,000 this year. As a result, the City Council voted 5-0 on Tuesday to completely eliminate funds for all public services funded by CDGB, except for fair housing. The cuts fall largely on programs that help the elderly, poor and disabled.
Funds will be axed for the Alzheimer’s Association, East County YMCA Summer Camp, Meals on Wheels of Greater San Diego, San Diego Youth Services, Elder help, Interfaith Shelter Network, Senior Community Centers, and more.
Mayor Art Madrid called the elimination of public services a “tough decision” necessitated by federal sequestration cuts. Sequestration mandates cuts across the board in nearly all federal agencies as a result of Congress failing to reach agreement on how to reduce federal debt and resolve the federal budget. Democrats sought a combination of revenue increases and budget cuts, while Republicans have blocked such proposals, holding out for cuts-only solutions.
March 28, 2013 (La Mesa) – Harmonica John and Budd Willis will present the 14th annual Spring Harp Fest featuring top harmonica players live at Harry Griffen Park, 9550 Milden Street in La Mesa. Musical concerts will take place on March 30 from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Admission is free, though a suggested $5 donation will benefit the San Diego Blues in the Schools program.
This year’s performers slated include Raphael Harp, Mark of the Blues Abbott, Nick “Chowda” Walsh, Dan “Dirty” Rice, Steve Bulger with 145th Steret, the World Famous Unknonw Player’s Jam, and Billy Watson.
WHAT IS REIKI? SENIORS GROUP AT LA MESA HEALTH CARE LIBRARY TO DISCUSS REIKI NATURAL HEALING WED. MARCH 27
March 25, 2013 (La Mesa) – The Grossmont Healthcare District’s Dr. William C. Herrick Community Health Care Library, 9001 Wakarusa St. in La Mesa, will host a free senior discussion group on “Reiki: How It Can Help You” from 10 to 11 a.m. on Wednesday, March 27. The public is invited to attend, and RSVP is not required. The speaker will be Lucy Olivier, a master teacher and practitioner in Usui Reiki and Karuna Reiki natural healing systems since 1998.
March 25, 2013 (La Mesa)--La Mesa Police Officers responded to a report of a fight and a possible stabbing in the 8100 block of La Mesa Boulevard last night. According to Police, a 29 year-old victim was walking with two friends westbound in the 8200 block of La Mesa Boulevard. Words were exchanged between the victim’s group and a group of five male suspects they encountered on the sidewalk. A fistfight broke out between both groups. During the fight one of the suspects armed himself with a pocket knife and stabbed the victim two times in the upper torso.
By Janis Mork
March 27, 2013 (La Mesa)- At yesterday’s La Mesa City Council meeting, Councilmember Ernie Ewin requested an update on the status of the Park Station project, a proposed 18-story mixed use building.
City manager David Witt asked Bill Chopyk, Community Development Director, to discuss the process.
THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT: SAN PASQUAL WINERY ANNOUNCES LIVE MUSIC, ART AND LITERARY EVENTS FOR APRIL IN LA MESA
March 24, 2013 (La Mesa) – San Pasqual Winery announces a creative series of upcoming events at its tasting room in La Mesa. Each Saturday night, find live entertainment including flamenco fusion, classic guitar, hits from yesterday and today, plus original local music. Other upcoming events include a painting class and a “big read” from a Ray Bradbury sci fi favorite read by La Mesa’s Vice Mayor and other local talents.
For details, scroll down or visit www.sanpasqualwinery.com.
March 18, 2013 – A man armed with a gun robbed the USA Gas Station located at 7594 University Avenue in La Mesa shortly after midnight March 17, 2013. The suspect entered the store, displayed a black semi-automatic handgun and demanded cash. After the clerk complied, the suspect left the store on foot in an unknown direction. Officers searched the surrounding areas but were unable to locate the suspect.
The suspect is described as a black male adult in his 30s, approximately 5’10 tall, 200 lbs, wearing a white shirt, dark pants, and a black baseball cap. The suspect also wore a white bandana covering the lower portion of his face.
March 19, 2013 (La Mesa)--It all started 30 years ago when a resident of a home for seniors spoke wistfully about the lack of music. His son took the complaint to heart and the Friendship Connection, a group of local singers and musicians, was born. They are still going strong today, performing at convalescent hospitals, senior residences and nursing facilities each Tuesday evening, their songs tapping into the audience’s memories of years gone by with singing along encouraged.
On Sunday, April 7 their music – folk, gospel and oldies as well as more current songs – will fill Friendship Hall at the United Church of Christ of La Mesa (UCCLM) at a fundraiser dinner and concert benefitting the church’s Chancel Choir.
March 2, 2013 (La Mesa) – The La Mesa Police Department, in an effort to keep everyone safe, was aggressively enforcing the state’s speed laws during the fourth “Traffic Safety Enforcement Program” operation, which took place Saturday February 23, 2013. The program relies on heavy enforcement and public education as a means to help reduce deaths and injuries on our local roadways.
When caught speeding, driver’s often ask for just a verbal warning. Though sometimes appropriate based on the overall circumstances, La Mesa Police Officers said “no” to that request at least 27 times and issued them speeding tickets during Saturday’s operation. One speeding driver was also driving on a suspended driver’s license, and his vehicle was impounded.
San Pasqual Winery is now offer a series of live music on Saturday nights in the back room of its tasting room on La Mesa Boulevard in La Mesa. On Saturday, February 23 from 7-10 p.m., The Sock Monkeys will perform.
February 19, 2013 (La Mesa)—La Mesa’s Community Development Department announces that the Environmental Impact Report for the city’s General Plan Update has been completed and is available for public review and comment. The 45-day public review period for the Draft EIR opened on February 14, 2013 and will close on April 1, 2013, at 5:30 p.m.
A copy of the Draft EIR may be reviewed, or purchased for the cost of reproduction, at City Hall, 8130 Allison Avenue, La Mesa, CA 91942. A copy of the Draft EIR will also be available for review at the La Mesa Library, 8074 Allison Avenue. The Draft EIR is also available on the City’s website: http://cityoflamesa.com/CivicAlerts.aspx .
February 17, 2013 (La Mesa) –Del Mar resident Sean Patrick Banks is accused of raping a La Mesa woman who he met through ChristianMingle.com, an online dating site. Police say he used several aliases on the site and has traveled considerably, leading to concerns that there could be other victims.
He is free on bail, after pleading not guilty to sexual assault and burglary charges, ECM news partner 10 News reports. Banks also reportedly used the names Rarity, Ryan Butterwood, and Ryan Harlough online.
Lt. Matt Nicholass with La Mesa Police has said that Banks was invited to the victim’s home and “ultimately ended up raping her.” The dating site cooperated with authorities to track Banks down, he added.