Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Silence Is Not An Option theme for 43rd Annual Contra Costa MLK Celebration Jan. 19

Saturday, January 16th, 2021

For the complete event program click, here.

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Antioch protest leader, 2017 Youth of the Year arrested for felony arson near Antioch Police station, out on $50K bail

Saturday, January 16th, 2021

From through CCCSheriff’s website.

“arrested on a $50,000 warrant…for an arson case that took place right behind the police department” – Antioch Police Corporal Josh Evans

By Allen Payton

Posts on Facebook and Twitter, Friday night shortly after 9:00 p.m., by the East Bay Resistance, of which 20-year-old Antioch protester and 2017 Antioch Youth of the Year, Shagoofa Khan is on the board of directors, claimed she was arrested “by Antioch Police Department in Lafayette” for “Felony Arson and her bail is set to $50K” and that they needed $5,000 to bail her out.

Post on Facebook page about 9:05 pm, Friday, Jan. 15, 2021.

According to the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Department website, Khan was arrested at 6:00 a.m. on Friday morning in Lafayette by Antioch Police on a warrant.

That was later confirmed by Antioch Police Corporal Josh Evans who said Khan “was arrested on a $50,000 warrant related to an arson case that we are actively working. I can’t give you any information about the investigation, itself. But just confirming she was arrested by our officers…out of Lafayette on an active arrest warrant for an arson case that took place right behind the police department.”

As of Saturday morning, Khan had been bailed out of county jail.

From the CCCSheriff’s website as of Friday night, Jan. 15, 2021.

She has been one of the organizers and leading participants in several protests in Antioch, last year and this year, supporting the Black Lives Matter movement and calling for the firing of specific Antioch Police Officers she has referred to as “killer cops”. In addition, she was seen participating in area other protests, including one in Brentwood, last year, near the home of a man who had hung an effigy of former Vice President Joe Biden in effigy, outside his house. (See related article)

Shagoofa Khan with bullhorn marching in a protest. Photo posted on her Facebook page on June 15, 2020.

On Khan’s LinkedIn page she wrote about herself, “I am someone who is very passionate about public service. For me public servitude is about serving everyone and anyone to the best of my ability & making sure that everyone’s voices are heard. If there is anything I can do to help out within my community, I will always make sure to step up to help in any way possible. There is a dire need for community engagement and my personal goal everyday is to get people involved!

Shagoofa Khan with bullhorn. From her LinkedIn page.

One thing I know I want to do when I’m older is to be a public servant and to work for the betterment of the community, city, state, country, and soon hopefully the world! I don’t know how I’m going to start but by making small changes in my community is definitely a great way to start.”

According to her Facebook page, Khan currently lives in Berkeley where she’s attending U.C. Berkeley. In addition, she has been active in student government at Los Medanos College and in Democrat Party politics. Khan is a 2018 graduate of Dozier-Libbey Medical High School in Antioch, ran unsuccessfully for the Antioch School Board, later that year, and was honored as a 2017 Youth of the Year by the Antioch Chamber of Commerce at their annual awards banquet. (See related article).

An effort to reach her for comment was unsuccessful prior to publication. Please check back later for any updates to this report.

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Antioch’s Markstein Sales Company combats slavery, human trafficking, appeals to other business leaders to get involved both locally and nationally

Friday, January 15th, 2021

Owner Laura Markstein places a sign on one of the company’s trucks. Video screenshot.

Through partnerships with New Day for Children and the National Beer Wholesalers Association, Markstein is making a difference to stop this growing crime against children

Help Stop Human Trafficking by reporting a tip or seek help by calling the National Hotline at 1-888-373-7888

By Rebecca Butler

ANTIOCH, Calif. – As part of National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month in January,  Markstein Sales Company (Markstein), a woman-owned and operated wholesale beverage distributor in Northern California, today appealed to business leaders around the country to join in its fight against slavery and human trafficking.  As a long-time supporter and sponsor of the New Day for Children organization that provides funding to help American children who have been recovered from sex trafficking, Markstein has also now joined a nationwide campaign with the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) where beer distributors, who collectively visit more than 600,000 retail establishments across the country, can play a vital role in identifying and reporting suspicious activity often unseen by the typical public.

“Rapidly escalating profits, the internet, limited police resources, and unaware communities have created a perfect storm for the child sex trafficking industry here in the United States. It is the second fastest growing criminal industry in our country, and one that employs sophisticated business practices and is highly lucrative,” said Sharon Wood, Executive Director of New Day for Children. “Today, the U.S. Justice Department estimates that 300,000 children are at risk of being trafficked for sex in the United States. Through partnership with businesses, such as Markstein Sales Company, we can provide the funds and resources needed to transition many of these children to safe housing and therapeutic care, and help prevent it from happening to another one of our children.”

Human trafficking is a growing problem in the U.S., with more than 11,500 human trafficking cases reported in 2019 alone. California has consistently had the highest human trafficking rates in the United States with 1,507 cases reported in 2019. To help combat this, Markstein is installing signage on all of its 75 vehicles that are typically on the roads of Contra Costa and Alameda Counties 14 hours per day, six days per week. The goal of these signs is to raise awareness locally and to provide easy access to hotline information for people that suspect or know of human trafficking cases. Markstein is also providing personalized training, leveraged from both NBWA and New Day for Children, for all truck drivers and merchandisers so they know what to look out for on their daily routes and in the businesses they serve.

“While our work to end human trafficking began at the local level, this is a national problem that needs all business leaders to stand up and make a difference. I am calling on all companies to get involved locally with groups like New Day for Children and nationally with efforts like those sponsored by the NBWA,” said Laura Markstein, President of Markstein Sales Company. “Whether that involves a sign in a highly visible location or extra eyes and ears for identifying and reporting suspicious behavior, there are many companies such as beer distributors that are in a very public and unique position where they can make a significant difference to fight this cause.”

“Beer distributors have behind-the-scenes access to the prime locations where traffickers could be exploiting victims – from bars, restaurants, hotels, convenience stores, to package stores, sports arenas and grocery stores,” said Lauren Kane, Vice President of Communications, National Beer Wholesalers Association. “We commend the work Markstein Sales Company has already been doing locally with programs like New Day for Children. Combining this with their commitment to the NBWA Distributors Against Human Trafficking campaign, means they have the opportunity to significantly impact the fight against human trafficking. Beer distributors in other states have seen a 175% increase in calls to the National Human Trafficking Hotline after they started educating their employees and putting signage on their trucks. We are confident Markstein’s efforts will bring similar life-changing results to California.

Call to Action

  • If you are a beer distributor, join the campaign being spearheaded by the NBWA to build awareness and provide training to educate employees on recognizing and reporting the warning signs of human trafficking.
  • If you are any other type of company that has vehicles, products or buildings that are constantly in the public eye, leverage your visibility to do your own campaign and encourage others in your industry to follow suit.
  • Support and sponsor New Day for Children. This nationally recognized charity provides support and assistance to American girls, ages 10-18, who have been recovered from the despair of sex trafficking. Your financial support can provide safe housing, school, medical, mental health care, equine therapy, and much more.
  • Take off the blinders.  If you think this is not happening in your community, you are wrong.  Every state, county, city, and town needs to help combat this nationwide crisis.  This Markstein video outlines the problem and the ways companies and individuals can make a difference.

“I am proud to work for a company that provides the tools and training to turn an average workday into an opportunity to help in a big way,” said Dustin Miller, Commercial Driver, Markstein Sales Company. “As I go about my daily routes, I feel more empowered than ever before to play a part in preventing and stopping these horrible crimes against both children and adults.”


New Day for Children is a nationally recognized 501-(c)3 charity that provides support and assistance to American girls, ages 10-18, who have been recovered from the despair of sex trafficking.  Your financial support provides safe housing, school, medical, mental health care, equine therapy and more. New Day for Children collaborates with quality programs for the children’s care. In this video you will see one such facility with New Day supported girls.

About Markstein Sales Company

Markstein Sales Company is a fourth-generation, woman-owned and operated wholesale beverage distributor based in Antioch, Calif. Founded in 1919 with just a horse, a wagon and six cases of beer, Markstein is now in its 101st year and distributing over four million cases annually to 1500 retailers in the Bay Area. The company’s portfolio is composed of multiple world-class beers including the Anheuser-Busch InBev and Constellation Brands family of beers, several high-quality craft beers and many others. Markstein is known for outstanding customer service, dedication to their employees and commitment to the community. The company continues to rank as best in class by retailers and is one of the top ten largest Woman Owned Businesses in the Bay Area. More information can be found at

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Contra Costa DA’s Office participates in National “Wear Blue” Day to promote human trafficking awareness

Friday, January 15th, 2021

Photos: CCDA

By Scott Alonso, Public Information Officer, Contra Costa County Office of the District Attorney

Martinez, Calif. – Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton joined members of the DA’s Office Contra Costa Human Trafficking Taskforce on Monday to participate in the national “Wear Blue” initiative to promote Human Trafficking Awareness Month.

Images of staff members with the DA’s Office wearing blue will be shared on our office’s social media accounts with the Contra Costa County hashtag “ContraCostaWearsBlue.” Multiple agencies and individuals will be sharing images today with this hashtag to share solidarity with human trafficking victims.

A huge part of exploitation is convincing our trafficking victims that no one cares about them or what is happening to them. This helps to isolate victims and make them more reliant on an exploiter if they come to believe that the exploiter is “the only one” who cares.

“The DA’s Office wants to underscore we care about all our victims, have services and support right here in our community and will look to hold exploiters accountable,” said Becton.

If you or someone you know has information regarding any acts or suspicions of human trafficking, please call the Contra Costa County Human Trafficking tip line maintained by the Discrict Attorney’s Office: 925-957-8658.

Local resources include Community Violence Solutions 24-hour resources line (800-670-7273) and Contra Costa’s Family Justice Center (925) 521-6366). To report suspected exploitation of youth, call the CFS/Child Abuse Hotline at 1-877-881-1116.

Contra Costa County was awarded a federal grant in October 2018 to form a Human Trafficking Taskforce. The taskforce has state, federal and local law enforcement partners and prosecutors that collaborates with local community service providers to provide victims with culturally competent services and support while investigating and prosecuting cases involving sex trafficking, labor trafficking and related crimes of exploitation.

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Multi police agency traffic enforcement results in 71 citations in Antioch Wednesday

Friday, January 15th, 2021

Police officers stop three drivers on Via Dora Drive in Antioch on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021. Photo: APD

By Antioch Police Department

Several motor officers from East County agencies collaborated on Wednesday to provide extra traffic enforcement in Antioch and Oakley.

Together with Pittsburg PD, Oakley PD, Brentwood PD and CHP, we issued:

71 citations in Antioch

50 citations in Oakley

Look for our next collab in the future and stay safe out there! #collab #apdmotorofficers #trafficenforcement #PittsburgPD #OakleyPD #BrentwoodPD #CHP

Police from multiple agencies participated. Three cops await violators at the corner of Via Dora and Asilomar Drives on Wed., Jan. 13, 2021. Photos: APD

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Three men shot in Antioch Thursday night, police seek shooters

Friday, January 15th, 2021

By Corporal James Colley #4705, Antioch Police Field Services Division

On Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, at approximately 6:50 pm, The Antioch Police Department responded to the 1100 Block of Sycamore Drive on a report of a shooting involving multiple victims. Upon arrival to the area, Antioch Police Officers located three adult males who sustained gunshot wounds. The male victims were all transported to local Bay Area hospitals and are listed in stable condition. The suspect shooters were seen fleeing the area prior to police arrival and were not located.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Antioch Police Department non-emergency line at (925) 778-2441. You may also text-a-tip to 274637 (CRIMES) using the key word ANTIOCH.

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Meals on Wheels Diablo Region awarded Food Insecurity Grant from PG&E

Thursday, January 14th, 2021

By Rachel Heggen, Community Relations & Development Specialist, Meals on Wheels Diablo Region

Meals on Wheels Diablo Region is pleased to announce that Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has awarded the organization a grant of $7,500 that will help combat food insecurity impacting vulnerable seniors.  Seniors are the fastest growing segment of the population in the country and the county, and while food insecurity has been an ongoing problem it has become more pronounced since the pandemic.

“Since March, we have been delivering meals to 40% more seniors,” said MOW Diablo Region’s Executive Director, Caitlin Sly. “The problem of food insecurity will continue into the future, but with the help of PG&E we can continue to deliver more meals to more seniors. That will help them continue to remain at home with dignity.”

The awarding of this grant was made possible with the help of PG&E’s Tom Guarino, who recently passed away. He was a strong advocate for nonprofits and his work on their behalf has had a profound impact on the lives of so many individuals.

MOW Diablo Region, in addition to delivering meals, provides life-improving services, such as Fall Prevention, Care Management, Health & Wellness classes and Friendly Visitors, Callers and Helpers.  Meals on Wheels Diablo Region is an independent nonprofit and is the only meals on wheels that delivers both meals and services in the entire county.  If you know someone who needs a delivered meal or a wraparound service, or would like to find out how to become involved, visit

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Raley’s Food For Families raises almost $18,000 from Antioch store customers for local food bank

Thursday, January 14th, 2021

Raley’s non-profit sets new record with 43% increase in total year-over-year donations raising over $3 million for California, Nevada food banks

By Kevin Buffalino, Public Relations & Partnerships Manager, Raley’s

Raley’s Food For Families Annual Holiday Drive raised over $3 million throughout the 2020 holiday season, the largest amount ever donated in the organization’s 35 years of hosting the event. The donations, which came from customers in-store and online between November 2 and December 31, will provide more than three million meals for those suffering from food insecurity in northern California and Nevada.

One of Raley’s 12 regional food bank partners is the Food Bank of Contra Costa & Solano, and $483,825.00 was raised for them during this year’s Annual Holiday Drive. The customers at the Raley’s and Nob Hill Foods stores in Contra Costa County donated the following amounts to provide meals for their food insecure neighbors:


  • Antioch – $17,932
  • Brentwood – $23,100
  • Oakley – $17,393
  • San Pablo – $21,516

Nob Hill Foods

  • Martinez – $26,025
  • San Ramon – $17,662
  • Walnut Creek – $25,431

“The generosity we have seen this past year within the communities we serve is incredible,” said Becca Whitman, Executive Director of Raley’s Food For Families. “It is no secret that 2020 was an especially difficult year, so we cannot thank our customers enough for their outpouring of support to help their neighbors in need during even the toughest of times. They are the ones who truly deserve the recognition.”

Raley’s Food For Families works every day to alleviate hunger locally by partnering with 12 regional food banks across the company’s footprint in northern California and Nevada. This year’s Annual Holiday Drive was especially important because these partners, which typically serve 1.4 million food insecure individuals each month, saw an increase of an average of 95% in those using their services in 2020.

Although this year’s Annual Holiday Drive has ended, Raley’s accepts donations year-round at check stand pin pads at all store locations and online to support Food For Families. Donations stay local to aid the communities in which they were made, and Raley’s covers all administrative costs for Food For Families, ensuring one hundred percent of donations benefit food bank partners and those in need.

To learn more about Raley’s Food For Families or to donate, visit 

About Raley’s Food For Families

Raley’s Food For Families is a registered 501(c)3 organization providing food to Feeding America food banks and their network of partner agencies. The year-round program serves the communities of Northern California and Western Nevada through Raley’s, Bel Air Market, Nob Hill Foods and Food Source stores.

Raley’s Food For Families began as a holiday food drive in 1986 and was founded by Co-Chairman and Owner Joyce Raley Teel and CEO emeritus Charles Collings. In the past 35 years, the organization has raised over $42 million and 40 million pounds of fresh, wholesome food. With a long-standing commitment to local communities, Raley’s Food For Families continues to grow and thrive as an organization dedicated to health and happiness for those experiencing food insecurity. Raley’s covers 100% of the administrative costs for the non-profit, meaning 100% of donations go directly to the food bank partners.

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

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