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Local News February 4th, 2010

Escondido Police Investigate Homicide

The Escondido Police Department Crimes of Violence Unit is investigating the shooting death of an 18 year-old Escondido man. On February 1, 2010, at approximately 10:10 p.m, two Escondido Police officers were flagged down by a passerby who reported seeing a man lying in the road in front of 910 E. Washington Avenue. Officers arrived within a minute’s time and discovered a Hispanic male lying on the side of the roadway suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. Escondido Fire Paramedics responded and determined that the victim was deceased. The victim has been identified however his identity is being withheld pending the notification of his family.

Escondido Homicide investigators remained on scene for some time and began their investigation. They request that anyone who may have witnessed or have information regarding this crime contact Detective Greg Gay at (760) 839-4404, or Crimestoppers at (888) 580-TIPS. San Diego Crimestoppers may pay a reward up to $1000 for information provided anonymously.

Escondido DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoint

On January 30, 2010, the Escondido Police Department conducted a DUI Sobriety / Drivers License Checkpoint at the intersection of East El Norte Parkway and Ash Street from 6:00 PM until 1:00 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:

• 2,132 vehicles entered the checkpoint
• 1,057 vehicles were screened in primary
• 71 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)
• 6 drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
• 1 subject was arrested for driving a stolen vehicle and a parole violation
• 1 subject was arrested for being drunk in public
• 1 subject was arrested for possession of false documents
• 7 field sobriety tests were administered
• 42 vehicles were impounded at this checkpoint, eight drivers did not have auto insurance, five driver’s had a suspended driver’s license and 34 drivers did not have a drivers license
• 42 citations were issued at this checkpoint

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

photoU.S. Border Patrol Seize over $1M in Cocaine Two Suspected cocaine Smugglers arrested

Saturday, U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested two suspected smugglers in two separate incidents seizing over 110 pounds of cocaine at the Interstate 5 checkpoint. The first seizure took place at about 9:30 a.m., when Border Patrol agents at the checkpoint stopped a 1991 Toyota Tercel driven by an 18-year-old male U.S. citizen. After questioning, the driver was sent to secondary inspection for further evaluation.

A Border Patrol canine team checked the vehicle and alerted agents to the presence of contraband. Agents noticed the vehicle’s gas tank had been tampered with and further examination revealed a secret compartment inside the tank which held 15 bundles of cocaine. The total weight of the cocaine is 39.2 pounds with an estimated street value of $392,000.

photoThe second seizure took place at about 7:15 p.m., after a Ford F250 was stopped at the checkpoint. The driver, a 44-year-old male Mexican national, was referred to secondary inspection where a Border Patrol canine team alerted on the vehicle. The alert prompted agents to perform a more thorough search resulting in the discovery of 28 bundles of cocaine stuffed inside a spare tire. The total weight of the cocaine is 71.3 pounds with an estimated street value of $713,000.

The two suspects were placed under arrest and turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration along with the cocaine.
San Diego Sector’s Acting Chief Richard Barlow said of the seizures, “These are important and significant seizures. Not only does this contribute to our law enforcement efforts to disrupt, dismantle and ultimately defeat organized drug smuggling organizations, this also keeps these dangerous drugs off our streets and makes our communities safer.”

Boys & Girls Club of Oceanside Creates Two New Positions

Thanks to federal stimulus funding from the American Recover and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the Boys & Girls Club of Oceanside now has a new Marketing Coordinator in the person of Rachel Amparan. She will lead the brand development strategy and interface with media partners to build awareness of Club services, programs, and activities. She is responsible for fundraising activities including special events, corporate sponsorships, and the Clubʼs annual golf tournament. The position of Community Outreach Coordinator was filled by Jessie Gunn. His main focus is to achieve a higher level of awareness for at-risk youth and teen involvement, and explore additional possibilities for outreach program offerings for the Club. Jessie will be participating with outreach committees on programs such as the Teens Talk Teens Pregnancy Prevention Video Contest, North County Gang Task Force, the annual Teen Trade Show, and Youth of the Year. Jessie joins the organization from Alaska, with a strong background in event planning, marketing, and corporate philanthropic support. Jessie is an alumni of William and Mary University.

The ARRA grant period is October 1, 2009, to September 30, 2010.

Door To Door Solicitors Hit Escondido

In recent months, Escondido has experienced an increase of door to door solicitors. These solicitors have been young adults that are dropped off in certain neighborhoods and walk from home to home selling items and some are just asking for money. Residents from throughout the city have reported an increase in aggressive behavior and intimidating tactics. Escondido residents have stated that some of the solicitors have been seen entering open garage doors and looking into vehicles. At this time, Escondido Police Department does not have a criminal case regarding their aggressive manner or the illegal entry into garages.

The City of Escondido will issue permits to door to door solicitors. Those permits must include the sellers name, the date range they are allowed to solicit and the items they are selling. Solicitors are not allowed to sell items at the door and are only allowed to take orders. The City of Escondido has not issued any permits to sell door to door in the past two months. If you come in contact with a solicitor who does not have a City of Escondido issued permit, residents are urged to call the police non-emergency line at 760-839-4722 and avoid conflict with the sellers.

Vista Hit and Run Driver Comes Forward 92-year old Says He Hit, Killed Teenager

A distraught 92-year old man acknowledged to the Sheriff’s department that he may have been the one who struck and killed a 15-year old Vista teenager, Lucas Giaconella, a Rancho Buena Vista High School freshman. Giaconella was struck from behind on Saturday evening while skateboarding on Thibodo Road about 7pm. The car did not stop.

During a vigil at which about 40 people attended, sheriff’s deputies were directing traffic when the 92-year old approached them and said he had struck something, but he thought it had been either an animal or an object. He said he didn’t realize that it was a person or that the person had died until he saw the people gathered for the vigil.

The man has not yet been identified. Deputies are conducting an investigation to determine if criminal charges will be referred to the District Attorney’s office.

Carlsbad Hearing on Power Plant Draws Turnaway Crowd

At one point, fire officials had to turn away people who had come to listen and/or speak at the hearing dealing with the proposed new power plant. The power plant, slated to be located on the eastern edge of the Carlsbad Encina Power Station, was discussed at a state-sponsored public hearing that drew in excess of 300 persons. Observers said there appeared to be more opponents than proponents to the plan.

At times it almost took on the atmosphere of an old-time melodrama with boos and hisses as well as cheers for those who spoke against the plant. The 558-megawatt plant falls under the authority of the state Energy Commission, who scheduled the hearing, which began Monday. Expert witnesses were called to testify. The hearing is expected to continue for several more days.

During the hearing a number of local and regional business leaders said they supported the project because it would add both business and environmental benefits. Others argued against the project, fearing contamination by carcinogens, cancer causing agents, would be released into the atmosphere.

NRG Energy, Inc., owners of the present 95-acre Encina site, said once the new power plant was in place they could tear down the existing power plant, thus freeing up the oceanfront property for further development.

The hearings continue. Interested parties may attend at the Hilton Gardens Inn on Carlsbad Boulevard, just south of Palomar Airport Road intersection. Those in attendance may listen but not comment on expert testimony.

Hidden Valley Kiwanis and “Operation Hero” Salutes Specialist Christopher Leon

This past Tuesday, Specialist Christopher Leon was honored as the Wounded Warrior saluted in the Hidden Valley Kiwanis Club’s “Operation Hero” program. The programs features a different Wounded Warrior once each quarter.

Specialist Leon was in over 100 combat missions in Iraq. He was a communications specialist on a mounted vehicle patrol when he was hit with and IED (Improvised Explosive Device). He eventually had to have his right leg amputated below the knee and now wears a prosthesis.

photo

Hidden Valley Kiwanis President Tim Cunning, Specialist Christopher Leon, and Operation Hero Founder, Lyle Davis

• • • • •

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Send your news tips or press releases to: thepaper@cox.net. Questions? Call 760.747.7119. And thanks!

 

 

 

 


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