January 2020 Articles

January 2020 Articles

TEN CANDIDATES QUALIFY FOR MARCH BALLOT IN RACE TO REPLACE HUNTER

 

Update:  Minutes after publication of this article, Hunter announced plans to resign January 13.

By Miriam Raftery

January 7, 2020 (San Diego) – Rep. Duncan Hunter has not yet resigned, despite saying he would do so after the holiday following his guilty plea to conspiracy to spend campaign funds for personal use.  But he didn’t file to run for reelection. Instead, voters will have 10 candidates to choose from.

The contenders include two Democrats, four Republicans, three no-party-preference candidates, and a Peace and Freedom party member. They’re vying to finish in the top two spots in the March primary in order to advance to a November run-off election.

Here’s a look at how some of the major candidates’ campaigns are taking shape:


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CVUSD FILES SUIT AGAINST TRUSTEE JILL BARTO, AFTER SHE SUES DISTRICT IN FEDERAL COURT

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

ECM Editor Miriam Raftery also contributed to this report

January 3, 2020 (El Cajon) -- The Cajon Valley Union School District (CVUSD) has filed a suit in state court against Trustee Jill Barto. The suit was filed after Barto’s federal lawsuit alleging violations of her civil rights and First Amendment rights. Barto filed her complaint in late November against the District, the other four trustees and Superintendent David Miyashiro, as ECM reported.

Barto’s suit accused the district, Superintendent and trustees of retaliating against her after she pursued an outspoken agenda of questioning questioning fellow board members and the Superintendent over hefty expenditures, including global travel by the Superintendent and promotional videos.  In her campaign materials she said, “My belief is that a school board should be answerable to taxpayers. The board should not simply be a rubber stamp committee, which it often times is.”

The district’s suit alleges that in 2019, the District received a complaint from an employee alleging that Barto was harassing her and “created a hostile work environment.” It also states that the Board of Trustees formed an Ad Hoc Committee to investigate the employee’s complaint. The suit does not directly identify any district employees by name and does not directly the names of the ad hoc committee.


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HEAR OUR INTERVIEWS WITH SAN DIEGO FOUNDATION AND INDIGENOUS REGENERATION ON EFFORTS TO OPEN THE OUTDOORS TO COMMUNITIES ACROSS OUR REGION

By Miriam Raftery

December 15, 2019 (San Diego)-- San Diego Foundation Opening the Outdoors recently presented over $450,000 in grants for 13 programs that increase access to the outdoors for thousands of young people and local residents, also improving 17,000 acres of natural land and four miles of trails in San Diego County.

Recently, we interviewed Lydia Van Note, director of environmental initiatives for San Diego Foundation and Lacey Cannon, executive director of indigenous regeneration, a grant recipient working on tribal projects ranging from eco-building to creation of a food foraging forest. The tribe is also embarking on an ambitious project to plant a trillion trees using drones, helping to combat climate change.

The interview originally aired in October on the East County Magazine Show on KNSJ, 89.1 FM. Listen to the full interview by clicking this audio link, and scroll down for highlights.

Audio: 


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100 MPH CHASE ENDS IN CRASH, ARREST IN SPRING VALLEY

East County News Service
 
January 6, 2020 (Spring Valley) – A driver pulled over for an equipment violation in Chula Vista at 3:45 a.m. fled from officers, resulting in a pursuit at speeds of approximately 100 miles per hour on State Route 125 
 
The drive exited at Jamacha Road in Spring Valley, where he lost control of the vehicle, which rolled over and struck a power pole, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.
 
The driver, 42, suffered minor injuries and was taken to a hospital for evaluation.  He was arrested for felony evasion and for two outstanding felony warrants.

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BALLOT MEASURE PROPOSES MANDATORY TREATMENT AND HELP FOR HOMELESS WHO COMMIT CERTAIN CRIMES

neighbor without a homeBy Miriam Raftery
 
Photo by Dave Myers: A homeless person sleeping outside City Hall in La Mesa.
 
January 6, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- A proposed ballot measure titled California’s Compassionate Intervention aims to strike a balance between criminalizing homelessness, deemed by many including some courts, as too harsh, and ignoring the impacts of crimes committed by homeless people on communities – an approach the author sees as too lenient. 
 
Mike Gatto, a Los Angeles attorney and former Democratic Assemblyman, believes his initiative “radically changes the state’s approach to homelessness.”

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HEALTH AND SCIENCE HIGHLIGHTS

January 6, 2020 (San Diego's East County) -- Our Health and Science Highlights provide cutting edge news that could impact your health and our future.

HEALTH

SCIENCE AND TECH

For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.


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LAWSUITS NAME DECEASED EAST COUNTY PRIESTS AS ALLEGED CHILD ABUSERS

By Miriam Raftery
 
January 6, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – Multiple lawsuits filed against the Catholic Diocese of San Diego and many local parishes allege past childhood sexual abuse by several local priests, including at least three who served in East County.
 
The litigation was filed on behalf of alleged victims previously unable to sue due to the statue of limitations, but a new law, AB 218, allows victims of child sexual abuse to file a suit up to age 40; the previous limit was age 26. Victims have three years from January 1st of this year to take legal action.
 
The alleged abuse occurred in the 1960s and 1970s.  All of the accused priests have since died.  According to Irwin Zalkin, attorney for the plaintiffs, the diocese routinely moved priests accused of abuse, often to desert communities where “they thought that the people there – mostly Hispanic – would not speak up.”  

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READER’S EDITORIAL: TO SOLVE HOMELESSNESS, CALIFORNIANS MUST TREAT CERTAIN CRIMES AS CRIES FOR HELP

By Mike Gatto, Special to CalMatters 

CALmatters is an independent public interest journalism venture covering California state politics and government.

January 6, 2020 (Los Angeles) -- Those of us who have watched a friend or family member wrestle with addiction or cope with mental illness recognize that certain acts are a cry for help. 

For one of my friends, it was getting into a car accident while under the influence, with her young children inside.


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TWO FLU DEATHS AND NEARLY 1,400 LOCAL CASES REPORTED IN PAST WEEK

By José A. Álvarez, County of San Diego Communications Office

January 5, 2020 (San Diego) -- Influenza cases reported last week in San Diego County rose to a season high of 1,390 cases, the County Health and Human Services Agency announced on January 2nd.

Two additional flu deaths were identified in the region, bringing this season’s total to 10.  A 77-year-old man died Dec. 24, and a 75-year-old man died Dec. 21. Both died from influenza A, and both had underlying medical conditions.


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HEARING FEB. 3 ON PROPOSAL TO RELEASE YET ANOTHER SEXUALLY VIOLENT PREDATOR IN JACUMBA HOT SPRINGS; COMMENTS DEADLINE IS JAN. 17

By Miriam Raftery

January 6, 2020 (Jacumba Hot Springs) – Despite recent protests over the highly disproportionate percentage of sexually violent predators placed in rural East County, the Department of State Hospitals is proposing to place yet another in Jacumba Hot Springs.  A hearing will be held Feb. 3 at 9 a.m. in San Diego Superior Court (1100 Union St., Dept. 2202) to determine whether Michael Poulsom should be placed at 45612 Old Highway 80, Jacumba Hot Springs, a community of just 561 residents, according to the 2010 Census.

Poulsom is diagnosed with Pedophilia Disorder. In 1985, he was convicted in Georgia of child molestation with two victims. In 1989, he was convicted in San Diego County of a lewd act on a child under 14. In 1995, he was convicted again locally for a lewd act with a fourth victim, also under 14 and served 15 years in prison. Prior to his release, the San Diego County District Attorney’s office filed a petition to have Poulsom civilly committed to a state hospital as a Sexually Violent Predator . He was committed, underwent treatment and petitioned for conditional release, which was opposed by the San Diego D.A. and the hospital. A year later he filed for release into the conditional release program for sex offenders, which the Dept. of State Hospitals supported over the objections of D.A. Summer Stephan.

The public may submit comments between Jan. 3 and Jan. 17 to be considered by the court. You can email comments to sdsafe@sdsheriff.org, or call (858)495-3619. Comments may also be mailed tol the SVP Release/Safe Task Force at 9425 Chesapeake Drive, San Diego, CA 02123.  Comments will also be accepted at the hearing.


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SDSU MEN'S BASKETBALL: AZTECS MOVE TO 15-0

 

Source:  goaztecs.com

Video courtesy goaztecs.com

January 5, 2020 (Logan, Utah) - Stout defense is a cornerstone of success for San Diego State this season. It certainly helped the No. 13 Aztecs extend their unbeaten start in a tough road environment.

Malachi Flynn scored 22 points, Matt Mitchell added 19 and San Diego State beat Utah State 77-68 on Saturday night to improve to 15-0. The Aztecs own the nation's longest winning streak. Auburn is the only other undefeated Division I team.
 

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CHIEF’S CORNER: GAS LEAKS IN THE HOME

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

January 5, 2020 (San Diego) -- Got Gas?  As temperatures cool down, home heating use goes up. Additionally firefighters respond to more reports of gas inside a structure call. It’s important for homeowners and renters to inspect their home-heating appliances and perform any maintenance necessary to avoid any health or safety hazards.

If you smell gas in your home or your carbon monoxide detector goes off, immediately evacuate the house and call 911.


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SDSU WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HOLDS OFF UTAH STATE 66-62

Sophia Ramos scored a team-high 20 points

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 4, 2020 (San Diego) -  inside Viejas Arena to improve to 2-2 in Mountain West play. SDSU shot a season-best 53 percent from the field and 70 percent in the fourth quarter to hold off the Aggies late rally.


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BEST OF EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS JAN. 4-FEB. 28

By Miriam Raftery,
 
January 4, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features live music at San Pasqual Winery in La Mesa, a full moon walk in Anza-Borrego, and concerts at the Magnolia in El Cajon. 
 
Plus we’ll have a preview of coming events including the silent movie Passion of Joan of Arc in Borrego, Open Farm Weekend at Oasis Camel Dairy in Ramona, trivia nights at Wine Works in La Mesa, tapas and a flamenco show at Spacebar Café in La Mesa, and a Lamplighter’s Theater production of Agatha Christie’s murder mystery play, The Hollow.
 
So click Read More for all of these events and many more!

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LEMON GROVE’S “HISTORY ALIVE” GOES TO SPAIN

By Helen Ofield, Lemon Grove Historical Society

January 3, 2019 (Lemon Grove) -- Jesus Benayas, president, The House of Spain (Balboa Park), is back by popular demand on Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. in the H. Lee House Cultural Center, 3205 Olive, Lemon Grove, with the riveting story of Spain's crucial involvement in the American Revolution--and our long association with the nation that has decisively influenced the culture of California, the Southwestern U. S., and the Western Hemisphere. This will be "History Alive" at its most essential.

The free, popular lecture series from the Lemon Grove Historical Society serves lifelong learning, is suitable for ages 18 and over, and never fails to delight our wide-ranging audience. Our new president, Roberta Bulling, will update you on our exciting, free upcoming events calendar.


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CHP SEEKS IDENTITY OF WOMAN HIT AND KILLED ON HIGHWAY 94 IN JAMUL

Update: The victim has been identified as Tiffany Rose King, 22, of San Diego.

By Miriam Raftery

January 3, 2020 (Jamul) – A woman who has not been identified was hit and killed last night at 9:30 p.m. while attempting to cross State Route 94 at the intersection of Peaceful Valley Ranch Road in Jamul, just north of the casino driveway.  She was struck by a Chevrolet Astro van driven by a 67-year-old man.

The driver of the Chevrolet remained on scene until California Highway Patrol Officers arrived,” says Officer Travis Garrow.  “Once the identity of the deceased is learned, her identity will only be released through the Medical Examiner once the family notification has been made. 


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SDSU SWIM & DIVE COMPETES IN PENTATHLON

The Aztecs earned the top three combined efforts

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 3, 2019 (San Diego) - San Diego State’s swimming and diving team completed their first taste of competition in 2020 Friday, hosting both a pentathlon and scrimmage at Aztec Aquaplex.

The Aztecs welcomed the University of San Diego Toreros, Air Force Falcons, Incarnate Word Cardinals and the San Jose State Spartans for morning pentathlon action. The teams competed in multiple heats of the 100 freestyle, breaststroke, butterfly, backstroke and individual medley. Two swimmers from each program swam in each heat of the event, allowing for the full rosters of all four teams to compete and earn marks throughout the pentathlon.


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CORONER: JAIL INMATE KILLED SELF BY CHOKING ON SOCK

By Miriam Raftery

January 3, 2020 (San Diego) – Don Ralph, 52, was found unresponsive on October 26 by deputies doing a security check at the San Diego Central Jail. Deputies found a sock lodged in his throat, removed it and performed first aid until relieved by paramedics, but despite lifesaving efforts, Ralph was declared dead a half hour later at 4:05 a.m.

Ralph shared a cell with another inmate, however the Sheriff’s department concluded there was no preliminary evidence of foul play.

Now the Medical Examiner has concluded that the cause of death was asphyxia due to occlusion of Ralph’s air way with the sock, and determined that the manner of death was suicide.


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NEW PRESIDENT OF LEMON GROVE HISTORICAL SOCIETY BRINGS AN OUTSTANDING SKILL SET

By Helen Ofield, Newsletter Editor and Historian, Lemon Grove Historical Society 

Jan. 2, 2020 (Lemon Grove) --The Lemon Grove Historical Society takes pleasure in announcing the election of its new president, Roberta Bulling, whose wide-ranging interests and professional skills bode well for the growth of Lemon Grove's leading cultural institution. Mrs. Bulling will hold office through May 31, 2020 when elections of new board members will be held.

Roberta Ford Bulling was born in Pasadena and grew up in Arcadia, California, where seeing the Rose Parade in person was an annual New Year’s day event for her family. Her parents instilled a love of music and reading in all four of their children.


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'AN EXPLICIT ACT OF WAR': U.S. KILLS SENIOR IRANIAN MILITARY OFFICIAL QASEM SOLEIMANI IN BAGHDAD DRONE STRIKE

 

"It's like Iran killing the head of the CIA or the Mossad on foreign soil."

Major General Qasem Soleimani, pictured here on April 11, 2016, was reportedly killed Friday in Iraq.

Major General Qasem Soleimani, pictured here on April 11, 2016, was reportedly killed Friday in Iraq. (Photo: Khamenei.ir/cc)

This is a developing story... check back for updates...

by Eoin Higgins,

January 2, 2019 (Baghdad) -- A drone strike believed to be from the U.S. military at or near the Baghdad airport reportedly killed Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Major General Qasem Soleimani, an act that observers warned could mark a significant step toward a hot war in the region.


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SUPREME COURT LETS STAND RULING THAT ALLOWS HOMELESS TO SLEEP IN PARKS AND ON SIDEWALKS IF THERE IS NO LOCAL SHELTER SPACE

By Miriam Raftery

January 2, 2020 (Washington D.C.) –The U.S. Supreme Court declined last month to hear an appeal of a ruling by the 9th Circuit U.S. District Court of Appeals, which held that cities and counties cannot arrest homeless people for sleeping in outdoor public spaces if a jurisdiction has failed to provide space in shelters.

San Diego County and dozens of other local governments had joined together to argue that the case should be overturned, arguing that the decision limits cities’ abilities to maintain public health and safety. In San Diego, a 2017 hepatitis-A outbreak was tied to homelessness.

But the 9th circuit held that a city ordinance banning camping in public places by the homeless “violates the 8th Amendment insofar as it imposes criminal sanctions against homeless individuals for sleeping outdoors on public property, when no alternative is available to them.”

San Diego had more than 8,100 people homeless countywide as of a January 1, 2019 count, but 27,850 people used homeless services countywide last year, Voice of San Diego reports. California, which has one of the best year-round climates, is home to around half of the nation’s homeless population.


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SDSU WOMEN'S BASKETBALL TRIPPED UP AT FRESNO STATE 79-54

Taylor Kalmer paced SDSU with 14 points

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 1, 2020 (Fresno) - The Aztec women’s basketball team (6-9, 1-2) fell at Fresno State (10-4, 3-0) 79-54 Wednesday evening inside the Save Mart Center.

SDSU was led by Taylor Kalmer’s 14 points. Baylee Vanderdoes and Téa Adams added 11 points each.


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SDSU MEN'S BASKETBALL BEATS FRESNO STATE TO STAY UNDEFEATED

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 1, 2020 (San Diego) - Undefeated and 13th-ranked San Diego State passed the first test of its toughest stretch of the season when it outlasted old friend Justin Hutson and undermanned Fresno State.


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