A chill must have gone up failed Santa Ana Mayoral candidate Alfredo Amezcua’s spine this morning when he cracked open the newspaper and found out that “Federal and state authorities charged 99 alleged Orange County gang members with crimes including murder, drug trafficking and extortion, at least half or whom were associated with the Mexican Mafia prison gang,” according to NPR. Continue reading
When I first contacted Assemblyman Jose Solorio regarding the seizure of immigrants’ cars at DUI checkpoints he told me that he would work with the State Legislature to change this awful policy. That was over a year ago – but sure enough Solorio is now working to pass AB 1389 which would “would bar law enforcement agencies from using DUI checkpoints to impound the vehicles of unlicensed drivers,” according to the Sacramento Bee.
Click here to read the proposed bill.
Solorio is a member of the State Assembly’s Transportation Committee, which voted 11-3 to pass the bill, on May 18. The bill was also approved by the Appropriations Committee by a 12-5 vote. Click here to see how the other legislators voted.
While most Republicans voted against the bill, Assemblyman Chris Norby (R-Fullerton) voted to approve it, as did his fellow Republican Dan Logue (R-Chico).
The Assembly voted this past Friday, by a vote of 51-19, to approve the bill. It now moves to the State Senate. Local State Senator Lou Correa has also told me that he would support changing the DUI checkpoint laws to prevent seizure of immigrants’ cars.
DUI checkpoints are funded by the State of California. Local police agencies like them because they result in a lot of overtime for police officers. The checkpoints don’t actually do much to stop drunk drivers. Allowing bars to serve food would do more to stop drunk driving.
Santa Ana Police Department
SANTA ANA POLICE STEP UP DUI ENFORCEMENT
The Santa Ana Police Department will be conducting a DUI/Drivers License checkpoint on Friday, May 27th, 2011. It will begin at 7:30PM and is scheduled to conclude at 1:00AM. It will be conducted in the area of 900 W 1st Street, in the City of Santa Ana.
In an effort to reduce the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol involved crashes, DUI checkpoints are conducted to identify offenders and get them off the street, as well as educate the public on the dangers of impaired driving. All too often, members of our community are senselessly injured or killed on local roadways by impaired drivers. This DUI/Drivers License checkpoint is an effort to reduce those tragedies, as well as ensuring drivers have a valid driver’s license. A major component of these checkpoints is to increase awareness of the dangers of impaired driving and to encourage sober designated drivers.
A DUI checkpoint is a proven effective method for achieving this goal. By publicizing these enforcement and education efforts, the Santa Ana Police Department believes motorists can be deterred from drinking and driving.
Traffic volume and weather permitting, all vehicles may be checked and drivers who are under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs will be arrested. Our objective is to send a clear message to those who are considering driving a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol and/or drugs – Drunk Driving, Over the Limit, Under Arrest. The public is encouraged to help keep roadways safe by calling 911 if they see a suspected impaired driver. Funding for this operation is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Contact Name: Officer W. Hadley
Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Phone: (714) 245-8216
Dear Neighborhood Leader:
I would like to invite you to the next Com-link meeting scheduled for Thursday, May 26, at 7:00 pm in the Santa Ana Police Department Community Room.
The main topic at the meeting will be presented by SAPD Sergeant Lorenzo Carrillo on Gang Enforcement in the Santa Ana neighborhoods. Sergeant Carrillo will also be discussing the effect of the current injunction as well as the general level of gang activity.
Administrative Chief / Fire Marshal Lori Smith from the SAFD will talk about their plans to address fireworks in 2011. Will Hayes, Maintenance Service Manager, of the Public Works Agency will be discussing the new contractor for graffiti removal. Councilmember Sal Tinajero will be addressing the meeting as part of our “Meet a Councilmember Series” and we will be recognizing David Ream, Santa Ana’s long time retiring City Manager.
As you can see we have a full agenda and look forward to seeing you at the meeting. The general Com-link meeting is open to all neighbors in the City of Santa Ana. We would like see at least one representative for each Neighborhood Association (NA). Please feel free to email me at email@example.com or call me at 714-277-9762 if you have any questions or need directions.
Remember the purpose of Com-link is supply you with information to be given out to your neighborhood. This cannot be done if your NA is not represented.
With that, I hope to see you on Thursday May 26th.
Carl Benninger, Com-Link Chairperson 2010-2011
PS: At the June meeting we will be holding elections for four position on the Com-Link Board. Any one interesting in running for the board and meets the requirements can complete the Board nomination form that will be available at the May meeting or by contacting Margarita Macedonio of the City of Santa Ana at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Violent crime fell in Santa Ana last year, according to the new FBI Uniform Crime Report. In fact the new crime figures show that robberies, aggravated assaults, property crimes, burglaries and motor vehicle thefts all went down in Santa Ana last year.
Violent crimes rates were higher last year in several California cities with comparable populations, including Bakersfield, Long Beach, Oakland and Sacramento, as you can see in the chart above.
Forensic science colleges are an option for people who want to learn the skills they would need to help the police to solve crimes. People who search for answers and want to solve problems are good candidates to start forensics careers and help their communities.
Kudos to the SAPD and Police Chief/Interim City Manager Paul Walters for reducing crime while dealing with budget cuts and the economic crisis.
Incidentally, the SAPD is holding their annual Employee Recognition and Awards Ceremony tomorrow night, on May 25, from 6:30 pm to 9 pm, at the Doubletree Hotel, located at 201 East MacArthur Bl., in Santa Ana. Kudos to all the men and women who work hard to keep us safe here in Santa Ana!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 24, 2010
Contact: Howard Sutter, 714.834.6203 office, Howard.Sutter@ocgov.com
Board of Supervisors Approves Response to Grand Jury Report on Detention Facilities
(Santa Ana, CA) — The Orange County Board of Supervisors today approved the proposed response to several findings and recommendations included in the 2010-11 Grand Jury report on Detention Facilities.
“We appreciate the Grand Jury’s review of our detention facilities and the positive conclusions they reached,” said Bill Campbell, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors. “The jails are an essential part of our public safety system and their proper operation is of great importance.”
The Grand Jury’s report found that Orange County detention facilities appeared to be clean, in good condition and in compliance with state policies and procedures. The report stated that the jails are not overcrowded and noted the Sheriff Department’s efforts to keep disruptions to a minimum.
The County’s response highlights several County initiatives to reduce recidivism including collaborative efforts involving the Sheriff’s Department, Probation Department, Social Services Agency, Health Care Agency, Collaborative Courts and the Orange County Reentry Partnership. The goal of these efforts is to provide a seamless transition for inmates leaving the County jails and integrating back into the community. The response also states that the Sheriff Department contract to house Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainees is expected to bring in approximately $21.4 million in revenue during the current fiscal year.
Grand Jury reports and responses to those reports are available on the Grand Jury’s website at http://www.ocgrandjury.org/reports.asp.
# # #
The City of Santa Ana’s Public Safety Committee meeting, on Tuesday, May 24, promises to be an interesting one – with activists coming to the meeting to talk about illegal bail bond solicitation at the O.C. jail, medical marijuana sales in northeast Santa Ana, and the seizure of cars driven by immigrants, at SAPD DUI checkpoints.
Medical marijuana is not on the agenda for the meeting, but it sounds like activists are going to try to talk about it anyway, from what I have read in blog comments this week.
A Facebook group is prodding their members to go to this meeting to speak up about seizure of immigrants’ cars at SAPD DUI checkpoints. See the video above. Here is what they posted on Facebook:
We demand that the City of Santa Ana stops targeting unlicensed drivers. Safe drivers are denied the possibility of applying for licenses and are routinely stripped of their vehicles at traffic stops. We want to see the leadership in Santa Ana end these practices.
The bail bond solicitation issue is one we have previously addressed here on this blog. Out of town bail bond agents are breaking the law by soliciting bail bonds on city sidewalks outside of the O.C. Jail and the City and the SAPD have refused to do anything about this. The O.C. District Attorney recently pressed charges against eight individuals for illegal bail bond solicitation in the O.C. Jail.
Here is the meeting agenda:
CITY COUNCIL COMMITTEE PUBLIC SAFETY AGENDA
May 24, 2011, 5:30 P.M.
Santa Ana Police Department
60 Civic Center Plaza, Community Room
Santa Ana, California
CALL TO ORDER
ROLL CALL Councilmembers: ALVAREZ, BENAVIDES, TINAJERO
City Manager, City Attorney
1. Approval of Minutes – Meeting of March 22, 2011
2. Impound Policy – Chief Walters
3. Building Healthy Communities – Chief Walters
4. Security/Firewatch for the Saddleback Inn – Fire Chief Thomas
5. Downtown Dance Ordinance – Chief Walters
6. Bail Bond Solicitation – Teresa Judd
7. Public Comments*
8. Committee Member Comments
9. Items for Next Meeting
10. Next Meeting Date – July 26 , 2011, 5:30 PM, Santa Ana Police Facility, 60 Civic Center Plaza, 4th Floor Conference Room, Santa Ana, California
*NOTE: Members of the public are allowed three minutes to speak on each agenda item.
Cynthia Cheryl Shirey booking photo, courtesy of the O.C. District Attorney’s Office
Orange County District Attorney Press Release
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release: May 20, 2011
Case # 11CF0730
Susan Kang Schroeder, Chief of Staff
Office: 714-347-8408, Cell: 714-292-2718
Farrah Emami, Spokesperson
Office: 714-347-8405, Cell: 714-323-4486
BAIL BOND AGENT CHARGED IN 8-CO-DEFENDANT SCHEME TO ILLEGALLY SOLICIT INMATE CLIENTS FROM ORANGE COUNTY JAIL
SANTA ANA – A bail bond agent was charged today in an 8-co-defendant scheme to illegally solicit inmates as bail clients from Orange County Jail. Cynthia Cheryl Shirey, 42, is charged with nine felony counts of violating bail license regulations by permitting an unlicensed person to solicit and negotiate bail bonds on her behalf, seven felony counts of violating bail license regulations by using a fictitious name to conduct bail bonds business, 10 felony counts of violating bail license regulations by failing to keep complete records of all business done under the authority of her license, and five felony counts of violating bail license regulations by transmitting to another person a fictitious communication authorizing the solicitation or negotiation of bail.
If convicted on all counts, Shirey faces a maximum sentence of 23 years in state prison. She is expected to post $20,000 bail this afternoon. Shirey was arraigned today and is scheduled for a pretrial hearing Aug. 5, 2011, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-57, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
“These consumer laws that regulate bail referrals protect the consumer and the public from unscrupulous secret dealings. These laws protect bail clients who are in some of the most vulnerable times of their lives, as well as legitimate, licensed bail agents who are following the law,” stated District Attorney Tony Rackauckas. “I wanted to commend Sheriff Hutchens for working with our Special Prosecutions Unit to keep integrity in her jails and enforcing the law.”
“These arrests are the result of an 18-month long investigation by Sheriff’s investigators working closely with our Department’s jail staff,” said Sheriff Sandra Hutchens. “The illegal soliciting of inmates by unscrupulous bail bond agents will not be tolerated in our facilities.”
“Bail agents who misuse and abuse their license to provide bond services will face the possibility of losing their license,” said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. “Let this case stand as a warning to those who would contemplate allowing any unlicensed person to unlawfully negotiate bail bonds on their behalf.”
Ernesto Perez, 36, Burbank, is charged with 49 felony counts of negotiating bail without a license and 56 felony counts of identity theft. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 72 years and four months in state prison. Perez is out of custody on $150,000 bail and is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing Aug. 5, 2011, in Department C-57.
Richard Anthony Arant, 28, Silverado Canyon, is charged with five felony counts of soliciting bail without a license and two felony counts of violation of bail license regulations. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of eight years in state prison. A $20,000 warrant has been issued for his arrest. At the time of the crime, Arant was in custody for misdemeanor driving under the influence of alcohol and driving on a suspended license (Case #11CM01467).
Jonathan Thomas Campos, 28, Long Beach, pleaded guilty April 29, 2011, to two felony counts of violation of bail license regulations and two felony counts of soliciting bail without a license. He is expected to be sentenced to four years in state prison as a combined sentence with two other criminal cases (Case # 09HF1568 and Case #10WF1614), for which he was incarcerated at the time of the bail bonds scheme. He is scheduled to be sentenced June 24, 2011, in Department C-5. At the time of the crime, Campos was in custody for multiple felonies including residential burglary, driving a stolen vehicle, and possession of a controlled substance (Case #10WF1614).
Jason Anthony Gatewood, 22, Fullerton, is charged with two felony counts of violation of bail license regulations and four felony counts of soliciting bail without a license. He faces a maximum of seven years and four months in state prison if convicted. A $20,000 warrant has been issued for his arrest. At the time of the crime, Gatewood was in custody for felony false imprisonment by violence (Case #10CF1804).
Vaughn Michael Hutchins, 26, San Clemente, is charged with four felony counts of soliciting bail without a license and two felony counts of violation of bail license regulations. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of seven years and four months in state prison. The People will be requesting $20,000 bail in this case and an arraignment date is to be determined. At the time of the crime, Hutchins was in custody for two felony counts of commercial burglary and misdemeanor providing false information to a police officer (Case #11CF0286).
Frank Matthew Tokeshi, 50, West Covina, is charged with four felony counts of soliciting bail without a license and three felony counts of violation of bail license regulations. He was charged with a sentencing enhancement for a prior strike conviction for robbery in 2004. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 14 years in state prison. The People will be requesting $20,000 bail in this case and an arraignment date is to be determined. At the time of the crime, Tokeshi was in custody for felony possession for sale of a controlled substance and misdemeanor driving under the influence of drugs (Case #10WF2031).
Mark Ward, 47, Las Vegas, is charged with one felony count of violation of bail license regulations and two felony counts of soliciting bail without a license. He faces a maximum of four years and four months in state prison if convicted. The People will be requesting $20,000 bail in this case and an arraignment date is to be determined. At the time of the crime, Ward was in custody for felony attempted murder, domestic violence with corporal injury, and residential burglary (Case #10HF1909).
Defendants Perez, Campos, Gatewood, and Ward were previously charged in this case on March 17, 2011. The new charges and co-defendants are a result of additional investigation.
Law Addressing Bail Bond Practices
California law prohibits licensed bail bond agents from soliciting bail business from any inmate or incarcerated person.
The law prohibits any person from negotiating the execution or delivery of bail unless they are a bail bonds licensee. Even for a licensed bail bondsman, California law prohibits bail bond licensees from unlawfully soliciting bail business from any inmate or incarcerated person.
California law prohibits any person without a bail bonds license from soliciting or arranging for the bail of another for compensation or receiving commission for a bail transaction.
Conduct by Defendant Perez and Six Inmate Co-defendants
Between Aug. 5, 2010, and March 15, 2011, defendants Arant, Campos, Gatewood, Hutchins, Tokeshi, and Ward were in custody in the Orange County Jail. During this time, Perez is accused of plotting with these six co-defendants for them to solicit other in-custody inmates to contact Perez to provide their bail. Perez was employed by Plotkin Bail Bonds but is not a licensed bail bondsman.
On 49 occasions, Perez is accused of acting as a bail bondsman without a license by negotiating with inmates to post their bail. Arant, Campos, Gatewood, Hutchins, Tokeshi, and Ward are accused of receiving payment from Perez in the form of money posted to their jail accounts in exchange for the illegal solicitations on behalf of Perez.
On 56 occasions during this time period, Perez is also accused of illegally using a legitimate bail bond license number belonging to a licensed bail bondsman from Bakersfield without the victim’s knowledge or consent. Perez is accused of using this stolen license number to log into an Orange County Sheriff’s Department database accessible only to licensed bail bondsmen to look up inmate bail information.
Conduct by Defendant Shirey
Shirey is a licensed bail bond agent who worked with Perez at Plotkin Bail Bonds. She is accused of permitting her unlicensed co-defendants to illegally solicit and negotiate bail bonds on her behalf with inmate in the jail.
She is accused of conducting business under the names Bail Right Bail Bonds and Bail Star Bail Bonds without receiving authorization to use those business names by the California Department of Insurance.
When visiting inmates in jail, bail bond agents are required to complete a Bail Bonds Visitation request form. This form is intended to prevent unscrupulous bail bond agents from gaining access to the jail to engage in illegal client recruitment. Shirey is accused of filling out false information on this form, claiming that her company had been initially contacted directly by the inmate or inmate’s family, in order to gain access to the jail to speak with inmates who had been illegally solicited as clients by her co-defendants.
Bail bond agents are required by law to keep complete and accurate records of all business done under the authority of their license to be available for inspection. On March 15, 2011, Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) detectives reviewed Shirey’s records. She is accused of failing to complete several of her records and failing to document how the agent or company was initially contacted by several inmates for the purpose of arranging bail.
This case was investigated by OCSD. Deputy District Attorney Brock Zimmon of the Special Prosecutions Unit is prosecuting this case.
The so-called “Santa Ana Coalition for Better Government” ripped the Santa Ana City Council and Santa Ana Police Department Chief Paul Walters today, in a mass email that questioned how much Walters will get paid as interim Santa Ana City Manager (see the graphic above or click here).
The Santa Ana Coalition for Better Government is registered as a Political Action Committee. It is run by two Republicans, John Acosta and Art Lomeli, who do not live in Santa Ana.
Walters’ team responded to the mass email thusly:
Double-dipping: Paul is not double-dipping. About 6 years ago, he actually did retire and the city asked him to come back temporarily on a contract basis to groom one of the deputy chiefs to take over his position. During the process, the deputy chief, Dan McCoy, was diagnosed with a brain tumor and subsequently died. The next in line was Bruce Carlson, who was eventually diagnosed with and succumbed to liver cancer. Since there was no one else the city felt comfortable with as chief, they asked Paul to un-retire, which he did.
Actually, it will cost the City of Santa Ana less money for Walters to serve as both Interim City Manager and Chief of the SAPD. It would cost quite a bit more to pay two people to do those jobs.
The truth is that the Santa Ana Coalition for Better Government is just a mouthpiece for failed Santa Ana Mayoral candidate Al Amezcua. He dislikes Walters because Amezcua makes a living defending drug dealers and gang bangers in court – while Walters and his department do their best to arrest these people.
I also found it interesting that the Santa Ana Coalition for Better Government’s latest email also focused on Code Enforcement – a tool often used in the past by Santa Ana’s dwindling white minority to make life tough for their Latino neighbors.
Santa Ana Police Department Case Alert
Gang Detectives Arrest 5 Individuals for Homicide
On Friday, 5/6/11, at about 2249 hours officers were dispatched to 900 W. Highland St. regarding an assault in-progress. Responding officers located an adult male victim with severe blunt-object injuries and stab wounds. The victim was transported to a local hospital with life threatening injuries. The incident appeared to be gang related and the motive was gang rivalry.
On 5/8/11, medical staff notified SAPD that the victim had suffered irreversible cessation of brain stem activity as a result of his injuries and the incident was considered a homicide.
On 5/9/11, SAPD Gang Homicide Unit Detectives and Patrol Officers arrested five suspects involved in the incident and booked them on murder and additional gang related charges.
On 5/13/11, at about 0600 hours the victim was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Victim: Abin Humberto Delgado, age 20, of Santa Ana.
Suspects/Arrested and Charged:
1. Juvenile (17)
2. Juvenile (17)
3. Juvenile (17)
4. Najera, Johnny (18)
5. Solorzano, Fernando (18)
All suspects are Santa Ana residents. All juveniles were charged as adults. The investigation is on-going and photographs of the suspects are not available.
The Santa Ana Police Department is offering monetary rewards for information leading to the arrest of gang homicide or felony gang assault suspects. If you have information about any gang homicide or felony gang assault suspects, please call (714) 245-8648.
Contact Name: Gang Investigations
Contact Phone: 714-245-8648
For Immediate Release: May 4, 2011
For More Information Contact: Carol Chamberlain – Office: (916) 319-2069, Cell: (916) 804-5355
Solorio Bill to Help Youthful Offenders Re-enter Society and Reduce Recidivism Clears First Policy Committee
AB 1387 would establish the Youthful Offender Reentry Grant program under the authority of the California Emergency Management Agency
Sacramento – State Assemblyman Jose Solorio’s (D-Anaheim) effort to help youthful offenders re-enter society gained momentum yesterday as his bill, AB 1387, passed unanimously out of the Assembly’s Public Safety Committee. The bill would establish the Youthful Offender Reentry (Cal-YOR) grant program under the authority of the California Emergency Management Agency to provide youthful offenders with integrated education and job training services.
“We know that acquiring an education and learning job skills is the best defense against recidivism for troubled youth,” said Solorio. “But we often fail to sustain the funding for these worthwhile programs. AB 1387 will stabilize the Cal-YOR program by continuing it on an ongoing basis rather than having to reauthorize it year to year.”
Cal-YOR is based on a national award winning re-entry model developed by YouthBuild USA, a national coalition of job training programs specializing in at-risk youth. AB 1387 would ensure that the Cal-YOR program, as funding is available, continues its critical role in reducing crime and offering young men and women a second chance.
“There are 30 YouthBuild programs operating throughout California and their success rates are phenomenal,” Solorio added. “They are a testament to the types of evidence-based programs that Cal-YOR wants to fund.”
Currently, nearly 80 percent of youthful offenders commit new crimes within three years, costing the Division of Juvenile Justice $224,712 per ward, annually to house them. Cal-YOR is federally funded and provides competitive grants for programs that help youthful offenders between 16 and 23 years of age upon their release from custody.
State Assemblyman Jose Solorio is the Chair of the Assembly Insurance Committee and also serves on the Assembly Appropriations and Transportation committees. He represents the Sixty-Ninth Assembly District, which includes the cities of Anaheim, Garden Grove, and Santa Ana. For more information about Assemblyman Solorio, visit www.assembly.ca.gov/solorio.
State Assemblyman Jose Solorio represents the cities of Anaheim, Garden Grove and Santa Ana. To learn more about State Assemblyman Solorio and his legislative work, visit his official website. This e-mail communication was authorized and paid for by Jose Solorio Assembly Officeholder Committee, ID 1337257, P.O. Box 26063, Santa Ana, CA, 92799.
Members of the Orange County Bail Agents Association are not too pleased about bail bondsmen who have been soliciting business outside of the Orange County Central Men’s jail.
“Newport Beach attorney Richard P. Herman filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Orange County Bail Agents Association on to stop these guerrilla marketeers and their aggressive solicitation outside jails and police stations,” according to the Bail Bonds Monitor Blog.
That lawsuit was filed last year. I don’t know yet the status of the case.
I spoke to one of the legitimate bail bondsmen, Luis Mier, about this issue this week. He said that it is illegal, according to a state law, for bail bondsmen to solicit business on the sidewalk.
Here is an excerpt from the state law in question:
Title 10 § 2079 – Soliciting of Bail; Persons
No bail licensee shall solicit bail except in accordance with Section 2079.5 and from:
(a) An arrestee;
(b) The arrestee’s attorney;
(c) An adult member of the arrestee’s immediate family; or
(d) Such other person as the arrestee shall specifically designate in writing. Such designation shall be signed by the arrestee before the solicitation, unless prohibited by the rules, regulations or ordinances governing the place of imprisonment. If so prohibited, it may be signed after release of the arrested to ratify a previous oral designation made by him.
Mier, who owns a bail bonds business located in Santa Ana, says that it is also supposedly illegal for the out of town bail bondsmen to solicit business on the sidewalk according to Santa Ana’s civic code, but he can’t get anyone at City Hall to enforce the law.
Mier visited City Hall this week. He spoke to a clerk who said anyone can buy a soliciting license for $300. Mier asked him if he would sell such a permit to a pimp. The clerk said he would! How disturbing.
Mier met this week with Assemblyman Jose Solorio to ask for his help in enforcing the state law against solicitation of bonds on city sidewalks. I also suggested to him that he meet with State Senator Lou Correa. Ultimately the State Insurance Commissioner, Dave Jones, needs to do something about these solicitors. Hopefully Solorio and Correa will put some pressure on Jones to do something about this.
It is unfair to local businessmen like Mier for out of town bail bondsmen, from as far away as Riverside and San Bernardino, to come here to Santa Ana and illegally take their business away from them.
Orange County supervisors have approved a law significantly restricting the movements of registered sex offenders, banning them from entering some beaches, parks and harbor areas, according to the L.A. Times.
Under the proposal, registered sex offenders caught in designated county recreational areas where children regularly gather would be subject to misdemeanor charges. Violators could be punished with up to six months in jail and/or a $500 fine, according to the OC Weekly.
Kudos to O.C. District Attorney Tony Rackauckas and O.C. Supervisor Shawn Nelson for drafting this ordinance. Now we need to pass a similar law here in Santa Ana.
As my readers might recall, I spent a lot of time researching the problem of men lurking at Santiago Park, after I personally observed these men and found spent condoms and vinyl gloves on the park’s trail.
I found a report by the Santa Ana Police Department, dated 2001, indicating that the City of Santa Ana has known about this problem – for over 25 years.
The SAPD ended up arresting a bunch of these perverts after I wrote a few posts about this problem. Click here to read about their sting operation.
Is this a problem in Santa Ana? You bet. In fact, we have over 200 registered sex offenders in our city, according to another of my investigative reports.
It is time for our City Council to pass a law, like the new County law, banning sexual predators from all of our city parks.
If you would like to communicate your feelings about this to the SAPD, click here. Click here to contact the Santa Ana City Council. You can contact City Manager Dave Ream’s assistant, Mark Lawrence, at MLawrence@santa-ana.org.
The Santa Ana Police Department has drafted an Executive Summary regarding the melee that broke out this Saturday night, at a party at the Caravana Mobile Home Park. You have by now read our initial post about this fracas, which included a shaky video shot by someone at the party. Here is the other side of this story:
Santa Ana Police Department
Disturbance and Arrests – 306 S. Sullivan #89
Caravana Mobile Home Park
On January 22, 2011 at 8:01 p.m., Santa Ana Police dispatch received a call of loud music coming from a party at 306 S. Sullivan #89. The dispatcher noted that the music could be heard loudly over the phone and that the calling party wanted no contact. At 8:47 p.m., officers who responded to the call gave the owner a warning and advised the dispatcher that the owner was advised of the SAMC regarding loud music and the owner would comply. At 9:10 p.m., a second call was received regarding the loud music and the officers arrived at 9:17 p.m.
The first officer that arrived heard the music “thumping” upon entering the mobile home park and indicates that he could hear the music from more the 200 feet. The officer contactedthe owner of the mobile home, Jose Zarate, and requested to speak to him away from the large crowd of approximately 50 people. Zarate did so reluctantly but was agitated and angry. Once out by the officer’s vehicle, the officer attempted to search Zarate for weapons due to his baggy jacket and pants. Zarate pulled away from the officer and a struggle ensued. During the struggle, Zarate yelled out for help from the partygoers. During the struggle, Maurilia (Zarate’s mother) grabbed the officer around the waist in an attempt to pull the officer away while three other partygoers began pulling Zarate away from the officer. With the help of another officer, the handling officer was able to overcome the resistance, handcuff Zarate and get him into the patrol car. However, the officers were then surrounded by approximately 50 angry partygoers. The officers stood back to back with their batons out as the partygoers pushed them around, pulled at their uniforms and attempted to open the door of the patrol car. The officers protected themselves by holding their batons up and pushing back as the partygoers assaulted them.
As back-up officers arrived, attempts were made to identify the partygoers who assaulted the officers in an attempt to free Zarate. During the arrest of the individuals that were involved, another subject threw a full can of beer at an officer narrowly missing his head and exploding on another mobile home. During the incident a total of 37 officers responded along with the helicopter. No officers were injured during this incident. A total of 8 subjects were taken into custody for a variety of charges related to assault, lynching and rioting. Four of the suspects were booked into Santa Ana Jail, one was cited and released (Zarate’s mother) and three were released after being interviewed.
Three of the arrestees sustained the following injuries:
• Jose Zarate – Two small lacerations on his arms
• Raphael Zarate Granados – Abrasion on the elbow and a small laceration on a finger
• Jorge Reyes – Bruise on lower lip
A video was posted on the internet (YouTube) and it shows officers tossing some chairs, a table and a stroller off to the side. An additional video with a better view was obtained from a witness at the scene and booked into evidence. The sergeant at the scene indicated that the chairs, tables and stroller were tossed to the side in order to clear a path for the officers who were struggling with arrestees who were resisting and to keep them from being used as weapons against the officers. Per departmental policy the sergeant is completing an administrative report related to the arrestees that were injured during the arrests.
The talk of the town this weekend was a melee that broke out at a mobile home park, in Santa Ana, when police officers showed up, for the second time that night, to follow up on a complaint about noise.
At 8:30 p.m. Saturday, police responded to requests from residents at Caravana Mobile Home Park at 306 S. Sullivan St., after a party became loud, Cpl. Anthony Bertagna said. Police issued a warning to the partygoers and left. They were called back again at 9:15 p.m. when more residents complained, according to the O.C. Register.
Someone at the party shot a video, which shows complete chaos as the police officers appear to go out of their way to damage furniture at the party. You can see the video above.
I have been told that the Santa Ana Police Department has their own video. They have yet to fully explain what happened. They did so however that residents were wrong about the number of SAPD vehicles onsite. Residents claimed there were 46 vehicles, which seems a bit much.
As one might imagine, there are a lot of damaging reports from the residents who got rousted, including a pregnant lady that apparently got pushed around by the officers.
I think we need to give the SAPD some time to explain themselves. Clearly the residents failed to obey the police officers the first time they were warned. It is sad that a birthday party for an 18 year old went south, but you cannot blame the police for that, although I am sure some local blogs will do so.
The real question is why did folks call the cops at 8:30 pm? That seems a bit early to be calling the police about a party.
Readers at the Register have of course put up a bunch of racist comments. But one of the parents at the party noted that his sons go to UCI and UCLA. This was not a gang event. These folks were just having a good time and things got out of hand when someone in the neighborhood called in the cops.
I am glad no one was seriously hurt.