||June 12th, 2008|
OCEANSIDE: Woman shot by cop charged with child endangerment
Investigation into officer is continuing
While San Diego Police Officer Frank White has not yet been charged, the woman he shot, Rachel Leann Silva, has been charged by California’s Attorney General with felony child endangerment.
Silva and her 8-year-old son, Johnny, were shot during a road rage confrontation in March of this year in a shopping center parking lot on Old Grove Road in Oceanside. Johnny, who was in the passenger's seat, was hit once in his left leg. Rachel Silva was struck twice in her right arm. Both were hospitalized for a few days following the incident.
The California Attorney General's office also charged Silva, 27, with two misdemeanor counts of driving under the influence of alcohol, two counts of driving with a suspended license and one count of driving while in possession of marijuana.
Silva faces up to six years in prison if convicted of child endangerment, said Supervising Deputy Attorney General James Dutton, who is prosecuting the case. Dutton said he and other investigators poured over 2,500 pages of evidence, including an accident reconstruction report.
In a somewhat unusual agreement, the state Attorney General’s office is handling the Silva portion of the case while the San Diego District Attorney’s office is investigating Officer White’s role in the shooting for criminal culpability. Thus far, no charging decision has been made concerning White.
Vista City Council to Hear Home Daycare Issue
A Shadowridge daycare provider has sought to expand her operation and her neighbors are in an uproar. The issue has now gone to the City Council to decide. At press time, no decision had been reached.
The background: In February city officials initially approved. Lucy Coyle's request to expand her home daycare service on Portofine Road from eight children to 14 children without a public hearing. However, many of Coyle's neighbors appealed to the Planning Commission. In March, city planning commissioners rejected the request after Coyle's neighbors said it would shatter neighborhood peace and quiet and devalue homes in the upscale community. Coyle has now appealed that decision and hopes City Council members will allow the expansion.
During the initial commission hearing, Coyle refused to abide by a condition to keep children from playing outside any longer than two hours per day, saying that was unfair to keep kids inside all but two hours a day.
City staff, meanwhile, have recommended that the City Council Tuesday approve Coyle's appeal and allow her expansion, with the condition that she only allow up to seven children play in her back yard at any given time.
Cal State San Marcos Researching Disease
Cal State San Marcos research labs appear on the cusp of exploring some exciting and potentially important areas in the development of an AIDS vaccine.
Bianca Mothé, associate professor of biology and coordinator of the university's biotechnology program, recently received a four-year, $444,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to study why the immune system can control acute infections, such as influenzas, but is ineffective in fighting chronic infections such as AIDS.
In 2004 Mothe had received a three-year grant from the institutes for the first infection study on campus. The idea came from Mothe's previous research as a graduate student and AIDS researcher at the University of Wisconsin. She found that while most lab monkeys infected by the AIDS virus became ill, a small subset of the animals remained healthy.
When you infect monkeys, a vast majority of them get sick,” Mothé said. “It will progress to AIDS and they succumb to the disease. What we had anecdotely found were a set of animals, about 5 percent, never developed the disease.”
What Mothé and her fellow researchers found was that the healthy monkeys had a set of good immune responses from CD4 cells or helper cells.
“Not only did these monkeys have high levels of helper cells, but they were actually making immune responses against the virus,” Mothé said. When she began her research using mice at Cal State San Marcos, Mothé picked the lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCMV) virus that causes aseptic meningitis, encephalitis and meningoencephalitis.
The finding of the first phase of the research was published in last July's issue of the Journal of Immunology. Mothé and her team found that helper cells in mice were effective in fighting off acute infections such as influenzas that are cleared in a few weeks, but useless in fighting chronic infections, such as the AIDS virus.
The project has given undergraduate students the opportunity to get involved in research. Some have collaborated with Mothé to publish the research findings. Three have moved on to doctorate programs and others are pursuing careers in the biotech field.
Rancho Bernardo Residents Cry ‘Foul’ Over Towing of Cars
The owners of Ciao Bella Hair Salon are the recipients of lots of angry phone calls and visits by irate residents of Rancho Bernardo. All because they called a tow truck company to tow away cars parked near their salon.
Cars were parked in the lot in front of the hair salon while work was being conducted on a condo and regular parking spots were difficult, if not impossible, to find.
Fifteen cars in all were taken. The bill to recover them: $190 to $250 each. Street parking is at a premium in the area, so many residents parked in the plaza lots. Those who parked in the eastern lot were fine, but those who used the smaller western lot, where Ciao Bella, a dance studio and a karate studio are located, were all towed away.
All those whose cars were towed live in the large Il Palio condominium complex on Alta Carmel Court, across the street from Rancho Bernardo High School and a few hundred feet from two small shopping plazas. Residents at the complex were told that they had to park elsewhere Wednesday and Thursday because of a patching job being done on the expansive condo parking lots.
A sign at the entrance of the Ciao Bella lot clearly states that parking is limited to customers only and that violators will be towed. Several residents said they were told Ciao Bella had complained. But the acting manager at Ciao Bella said yesterday that it was the property manager, Brad Clark, who was responsible. The tow company also had Clark's name as a contact. Clark has not returned phone calls for comment.
Several residents made the same complaint . . . “This is a pretty tight little community, and the salon is part of that community. We are all customers of these stores. I think our community should know these are not community players.” Another comment said . . . “What makes me so mad is that they had to know this was just a two-day, temporary thing. And most of the people would have removed the cars in the morning to go to work before the salon even opened.”
Abandoned Shopping Cart Ordinance Looked at by Oceanside.
Cities throughout North County have taken a hard look at means of combatting the unsightly scenes of abandoned shopping carts. A number have passed ordinances to try and control the problem. Now it’s Oceanside’s turn.
The City Council agreed to review a proposed ordinance that would warn stores that they would be held responsible for keeping customers from walking off with carts and then abandoning them. Area residents fume that they bring down property values and make neighborhoods resemble Tobacco Road.
It's already a misdemeanor to take shopping carts from store parking lots but that hasn’t exactly caused the Oceanside police to run in, sirens blaring, to catch the misdemeanants. The cars just become public nuisances and could become dangerous as children try to play with them.
David Manley, the city's top code-enforcement officer said there are over 10,000 carts serving about 100 Oceanside stores. Further, at any one time it was probable that there were 100 carts abandoned somewhere in the city. He has proposed an ordinance modeled after ones in several other cities, including La Mesa and Escondido.
Oceanside's proposal says stores must maintain a cart-retrieval service, put signs out warning that cart theft is prohibited by law and make sure each cart is marked with the identity of its owner. If shopping carts are found off the premises, store management must present a “containment plan” to the city telling how it plans to stop the thievery.
“It's actually working very well,” Escondido City Manager Clay Phillips said yesterday of his city's 2006 law. “We still do have some of that (cart abandonment) but it has been greatly reduced and things have gotten much better here.”
The California Grocers' Association objected to the Escondido ordinance, primarily because of a fine it levies against stores that still lose carts. Five wayward carts a month can result in a $1,000 fine. Stores are not told which containment plan to institute but have several choices: An electronic system that does not allow the carts to pass a certain perimeter. Have store personnel accompany the cart to a customer's car. Hire a cart-retrieval service that cruises nearby neighborhoods periodically. Many already subscribe to such a service. Place bollards or other impediments in the way of the carts. Charge a fee for the use of the cart.
Oceanside's proposal charges stores a $100 processing fee per plan, and a $1,000 fine will be charged for violation of the ordinance. The fees are expected to pay for the $5,900 in city staffing costs.
At press time, the Council had not taken action.
Carlsbad Train Depot Adds 130 Parking Spots
The North County Transit District has added 130 parking spaces at the Carlsbad Village train station to accommodate more commuters. The expanded parking lot, north of the station between State Street and the railroad tracks, has space for nearly 500 vehicles.
“As busy as Carlsbad Village is, it's great to add some parking there,” district spokesman Tom Kelleher said. The Coaster operates between Oceanside and downtown San Diego.
The transit district had been using the property to house railroad maintenance equipment. It condensed the storage space and expanded the lot. The contract was for $204,000.
Escondido Senior Anglers General and Board Meeting
The Senior Anglers of Escondido will hold their July Board Meeting at 8 a.m. the third Friday morning of the month in room #5 at the Joslyn Senior Center of Escondido at 210 Park Avenue, July 18th.
The general meeting will take place at 9:30 in the auditorium on the same morning. Program Director, Bob Lage, will introduce this month's speaker, Don Hadley, the Deputy City Manager for the City of Oceanside. He will be providing some information and updates about the Port of Oceanside and what it provides for the fisherman and general public.
DreamAbility Art Exhibition Featured at Escondido Municipal Art Gallery
An opening reception for the DreamAbility Art Exhibition will be held this Saturday, June 14th from 5 to 7pm at the Escondido Municipal Art Gallery, 142 West Grand, Escondido. An Awards Presentation will be held at 6pm.
Complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served and the public is welcome. The exhibition features works of artists who show their ability, not disability. The exhibit itself runs through July 3rd. Show Coordinator: Marty Tiedeman.