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Local News December 10th, 2009

Two Fatalities in Car Accident in Escondido

On Saturday, December 5th, at about 11:15 PM, operators from the Escondido Police Department Communications Center received a 911 call regarding an injury collision in the 1600 Block of East El Norte Parkway. Officers from the Escondido Police Department arrived on scene at approximately 11:16 PM.

Based on physical evidence from the scene and witness statements, it appears that the vehicle was traveling westbound on El Norte Parkway at a high rate of speed. The driver made a sudden lane change and lost control of the vehicle. The vehicle struck a curb and ultimately struck a nearby tree. There was a man from Temecula and teenage female inside the vehicle, both of whom were killed instantly. Nieves Alejandra Ruiz, 17, and Miguel Magana Arias, 20, were in a black 2002 Lincoln LS sedan.

The tree was cut down to remove the bodies from the car, which was described as a mangled mass of U-shaped metal, said Escondido police Lt. Chris Wynn. The Medical Examiner’s Office said neither Ruiz nor Arias was wearing a seat belt. Ruiz is the fifth teenager to die in a crash in North County since September.

City of San Marcos Holds Workshop - Planning For the Future

Residents interested in sharing their ideas about how San Marcos should develop over the next 20 years should attend a general plan workshop being held today at San Elijo Elementary School, 1615 Schoolhouse Way. The workshop begins at 6:30 pm and light refreshments will be served.

“Updating the City’s general plan will ensure that San Marcos continues to thrive and provides a healthy, vibrant environment for future generations,” explained City Manager Paul Malone. “The success of the general plan update truly rests on the active participation of all the different groups, neighborhoods and organizations in our community.”

City’s general plan is one of the most important documents for guiding future development, and is often times referred to as a “blueprint” for achieving residents’ vision for the future. San Marcos’ decisions related to development, growth, infrastructure and environmental management will be covered in the general plan update.

Input from residents at the workshop will be used to guide the update of the general plan. The final plan will then be adopted by the San Marcos City Council. For more information on the general plan update, please visit www.ourcityourfuture.com or call (760) 744-1050, PLAN (7526).

Four Arrests, 49 Citations Issued, 48 vehicles Impounded in Escondido DUI Sobriety and Drivers License Checkpoint

On December 5, 2009, the Escondido Police Department conducted a DUI Sobriety / Drivers License Checkpoint at the intersection of Ash Street and Oakhill from 6:00 PM until 12:00 AM. The emphasis of this checkpoint was to detect intoxicated and unlicensed drivers as well as to provide a highly visible operation to deter driving under the influence.

The following activity resulted from this checkpoint:

• 1,159 vehicles entered the checkpoint
• 980 vehicles were screened in primary
• 78 vehicles sent to secondary (drivers who could not produce a drivers license or who were suspected of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs)
• Three drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
• One person was arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance
• Six field sobriety tests were administered
• 48 vehicles were impounded at this checkpoint, 10 drivers did not have auto insurance, 4 drivers had a suspended drivers license and 44 drivers did not have a drivers license
• 49 citations were issued at this checkpoint.

Stop Taxing Us to Support Ballot Initiative to Stop Public Unions from Using Member Dues for Political Contributions

Stop Taxing Us, Southern California’s largest taxpayer advocacy group, will join Tea Party Patriot groups throughout California in support of the Citizen Power Campaign.

The Citizen Power Campaign (see link on home page at www.StopTaxingUs.com) is a ballot initiative to stop public labor unions from collecting union dues and using them to influence California politics. Public labor unions will have to request separate voluntary donations for political activities. In other words, public employees will only make voluntary contributions, just like everybody else in California.

For additional information please call Dana Matas at 760 429-8549 or send an email to mailbox@StopTaxingUs.com

The Jumping Turtle Bar & Grill Loses Business Permit

The city of San Marcos has pulled the business permit for live music at the troubled Jumping Turtle Bar and Grill. The notice, which City Clerk Susie Vasquez issued Nov. 27, was set to go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday but has been put on hold pending a hearing set for 9 a.m. Dec. 17 at City Hall.

Attorney Everett DeLano, who represents The Jumping Turtle owners Matthew Hall and Laura Mouradian, requested the hearing. In the meantime, the bar can continue to offer music.

“The city has no further comment on the matter pending the administrative appeal,” said city spokeswoman Jenny Peterson. The revocation notice says The Jumping Turtle violated city codes or terms of its entertainment permit numerous times since mid-May.

“We run a very legal establishment,” said Mouradian. “I’m proud of my reputation and my bar’s reputation. Now, they’ve ruined that.”

The Jumping Turtle, which opened in 2003 on Capalina Road, is a popular venue for local Goth and metal rock bands. In addition to serving alcohol, the menu offers pizza, burgers and burritos. Until May, its permit allowed minors until 10 p.m., which made The Jumping Turtle one of the few North County venues offering entertainment for the under-21 crowd. Sheriff’s deputies have made frequent stops at the business in the past two years.

On Nov. 2, the bar’s owners filed a claim with the city seeking more than $10,000 in damages. The claim accuses the city and the county Sheriff’s Department of conspiracy and abuse of power, harassment, violation of civil rights and other actions the owners say have damaged the business’s income and reputation.

The licenses/permits in question had also required a number of restrictions including included prohibition of a cover charge, the owners contending the city had no authority to regulate that issue.

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