Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Felony charges filed against man in last Thursday’s Antioch officer involved shooting case

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

By Lieutenant D. Bittner #3252, Antioch Police Field Services Bureau

On Monday, March 20, 2017 the Contra Costa County Office of the District Attorney filed four felony charges against 49-year-old Anthony Terry for his involvement in the incident described below. Terry sustained minor injuries during the incident and is currently being held at the Martinez Detention Facility on the following charges:

– Felony assault upon a peace officer

– Felony fleeing a pursuing peace officer while driving reckless

– Felony illegal possession of ammunition

– Felony possession of a firearm

At approximately 10:13 PM on Thursday, March 16, 2017, Antioch Police Officers were dispatched to a reported shooting that was occurring in the 2000 block of Mokelumne Drive. As officers arrived in the area they located an involved vehicle. Officers attempted a traffic stop on the vehicle and the driver failed to stop for officers.

Officers pursued the vehicle and during the pursuit the suspect vehicle rammed an Antioch Police patrol vehicle near Wawona Court. Shots were fired by the officer and the suspect was wounded. A firearm was located in the suspect’s vehicle. The suspect was transported to an area hospital and was treated for his injuries. The suspect is in stable condition at this time. No officers were injured. This investigation is in its early stages and no further information will be released at this time.

Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to call Detective Vanderpool with the Antioch Police Department at (925) 779-6988.

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Antioch police assist in arrest of Bay Point man in child molestation, pornography case

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

Pablo Ruiz. Photo by CCCSheriff.

On Tuesday morning, March 21, 2017, law enforcement officers arrested 33-year-old Pablo Ruiz of Bay Point for child molestation and distribution and possession of child pornography.

This follows a ten-month investigation lead by detectives from the Sexual Assault Unit of the Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff. In April 2016, investigators from the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force were contacted by authorities in Lynchburg, Virginia, who had identified Ruiz as a suspect who was trading child pornography over the internet. The Contra Costa Sheriff’s Office took over the case. Investigators served a search warrant at Ruiz’s residence and collected a significant quantity of computer evidence. A short time later, evidence was uncovered that Ruiz had sexual contact with at least one minor.

The Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office has charged Ruiz with five counts of child molestation, aggravated possession of child pornography and nine counts of distributing child pornography. Ruiz is currently being held at the Martinez Detention Facility in lieu of $1.5 million bail.

Detectives believe there may be other victims. The Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information to please contact Detective Norvell at 925-313-2625. For any tips, please email: tips@so.cccounty.us or call 866-846-3592 to leave an anonymous voice message.

The prosecution is a result of an investigation by a multi-agency Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, which is managed by the San Jose Police Department. In Contra Costa County, detectives and investigators from the Walnut Creek, Antioch, Martinez, San Ramon, Con-cord and Moraga Police Departments, the Contra Costa Sheriff’s Office, Probation Department and District Attorney’s Office participate in the task force.

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Antioch’s interim city manager offers brief message on transition

Monday, March 20th, 2017

Ron Bernal. file photo

By Allen Payton

In his first Weekly Report, dated March 17, 2017, Antioch’s Interim City Manager Ron Bernal offered the following message about his service while the city council pursues hiring a permanent replacement for former City Manager Steve Duran.

“The departure of former City Manager Duran on Tuesday night has resulted in a whirlwind transition to the new position of Interim City Manager.  I am prepared and committed to keeping the City of Antioch moving in a positive and prosperous direction,” Bernal wrote. “As we begin the process of securing a permanent City Manager, the support of the City Council, staff, local businesses and the individuals and families that call Antioch home is appreciated.”

Bernal was promoted to the part-time position of Assistant City Manager on April 17, last year. He is also the city’s Public Works Director. (See related article).

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Sal Sbranti honored as Antioch’s 2016 Citizen of the Year for Most Impact

Sunday, March 19th, 2017

Sal Sbranti, center with Antioch Councilwoman Monica Wilson, Mayor Pro Tem Lamar Thorpe, Mayor Sean Wright and Antioch Chamber of Commerce CEO Richard Pagano. Photo by Michael Pohl

At the annual Gala of the Antioch Chamber of Commerce, last Friday night, March 10th, Antioch resident Sal Sbranti was honored as the 2016 Citizen of the Year for Most Impact.

After thanking his “wife, mother, daughter, sister-in-law, brother and nephew” for being there, at the Gala, Sbranti said “Thank you, everyone for bestowing this great honor on me.”

“I’m up here, tonight because of Gordon Gravelle who sponsored me in the Rotary Club,” he added.

Upon retirement, Sal Sbranti joined the Rotary Club of Antioch and quickly became a leader of the largest fundraiser of the year, the annual golf tournament. As team captain with the challenge of enlisting sponsors and players due to his leadership, “Sal’s Super Stars” raised the most in donations and money.

After viewing a documentary, The Empowerment Project: Ordinary Women Doing Extraordinary Things, which documents the travels through America of a crew of women filmmakers on a mission of inspiring and empowering young women to identify and then pursue their ambitions, Sal presented the opportunity for Rotary to incorporate the documentary into a project at Antioch High School called Girl Power, which was an exercise designed to empower high school girls to aspire to realize their potential in choosing a career.

In 2014, the first two sessions were held at Deer Valley and one at Antioch High with a total attendance of more than 2,000 young women from grades nine through twelve viewing the documentary, listening to local successful panellists and answering the question, “What would I do if I wasn’t afraid to fail?”  The following year, the program was expanded to the middle schools.

In 2016, the Empowerment project work continues and is expanding to the middle schools and creating a male. In addition, Sal will be presenting the program at the Rotary Conference in Berkeley this year to help other Rotary Clubs to launch the program.

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

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Stolen cars, theft, guns, drugs, loitering among Antioch Police calls for service for March 2-8, 2017

Sunday, March 19th, 2017

Following are the Antioch Police Department calls for service highlights as published in City Manager Steve Duran’s final Weekly Report dated March 10, 2017 and provided by Chief of Police Allan Cantando.

Calls for Service and Arrest Data Summary:

Time Period: 03/02/17 00:00:00 – 03/08/17 23:59:59

Number of Calls for Service: 1,636

Number of Case Reports: 262

Number of Arrests: 65

Felony: 22

Misdemeanor: 43

Arrests with DUI charge: 0

The data is based upon unaudited CAD/RMS data at time of report generation.

  • 3/8/17 at 11:10 pm, 29 year old Matthew Pirant was contacted by officers during a pedestrian stop. He was found to have multiple warrants for his arrest. Pirant was taken into custody without incident and booked into County Jail.
  • 3/8/17 at 8:37 am, an officer conducted a traffic enforcement stop on a vehicle being driven by 62 year old Lewis Decker in the area of Lemontree Way. and Sycamore Dr. During a routine computer check, Decker was found to have five misdemeanor warrants for his arrest. He was arrested and searched incident to arrest. During the search, the officer located a moderate amount of methamphetamine. Decker was later booked in the County Jail on a drug charge and his warrants.
  • 3/8/17 at 12:55 am, officers were dispatched to a home on Cheyenne Ct. Upon arrival, officers contacted 77 year old Mary Bennett. Bennett had a warrant for her arrest. Bennett was issued a Promise to Appear with a new court date.
  • 3/7/17 at 10:24 pm, officers were dispatched to 24-Hour Fitness on Somersville Rd. for a report of a subject looking into and checking the door handles of vehicles in the parking lot. The reporting party also advised that the subject came into the gym without a pass, was making customers feel uncomfortable, and refused to identify himself to the staff. Upon arrival, officers contacted 21 year old Byron Smith in the parking lot. Smith was uncooperative, upset, and refused to provide identification. As Smith was being detained, he pulled away from the officers. He was placed under arrest after a brief struggle. No one was injured. Smith was found to be on probation for auto theft. Smith was sent to County Jail for trespassing, obstructing/delaying an officer, and probation violation.
  • 3/7/17 at 8:48 am, an officer saw a CHP Motor Officer pointing to three subjects near the Kmart parking lot on E. 18th St. The officer saw 36 year old Jason Mullins, 34 year old Ronald McKinsey, and 39 year old Nicholas Castro walking away from a white truck stuck in the field. Mullins and McKinsey dropped burglary tools commonly used to steal cars as they were walking away from the truck. The owner of the truck happened to be reporting it stolen to Pittsburg Police at that moment. All three subjects were placed under arrest. Castro initially lied about his name, but admitted to the lie once other officers arrived on scene and recognized him from prior contacts. He lied because he had an outstanding warrant for auto theft. All three were sent to County Jail for vehicle theft.
  • 3/7/17 at 3:32 am, officers were dispatched to a vacant building that is utilized to store miscellaneous items in the 1600 block of A St. for a report of a burglary in progress. Upon officers’ arrival, they found the building was unlocked and a local transient, 28 year old Emmanuel Rader, was sitting in the building due to the cold weather. Rader was released with a citation for trespassing.
  • 3/6/17 at 1:30 pm, Antioch Police Detectives served a search warrant at a residence on W. 12th St. While executing the warrant, 30 year old Adam Renfroe, 22 year old Adrien Morales, and 54 year old Desiree Tourville were detained. During a search of the residence, a loaded firearm was located and determined to be stolen in a residential burglary from a nearby city. Morales and Tourville were later released from the police station. Renfroe had an outstanding warrant and was sent to County Jail.
  • 3/6/17 at 9:22 am, an officer saw the garbage cans set outside of the garbage bin structure behind a business on San Jose Dr. The officer was aware that transients will often set up camps inside the garbage bin structures. The officer located 31 year old Lonnie King sleeping inside, and he was determined to have an outstanding warrant. He was placed under arrest and sent to County Jail.
  • 3/6/17 at 3:45 am, a resident on Steed Way found a male wearing a mask burglarizing her father’s car in front of their home. She confronted the masked burglar who brandished a knife as he rummaged through the vehicle. He then ran into Mink Ct. and disappeared. An area check was conducted, but he was not located. At 7:13 am, residents on Mink Ct. called police to report a masked male looking into backyards, stating he had, “dropped a knife.” Officers located 18 year old Chayce Honey in one of the backyards. He was positively identified by witnesses and evidence located at the scene. He was placed under arrest and sent to County Jail.
  • 3/5/17 at 10:37 pm, officers were dispatched to the Goodwill store on W. 10th St. for a subject trespassing. Officers found 43 year old Justin Enriquez on the property after hours. He was charging his phone with an accessible outlet on the outside of the business. Enriquez was found to have an outstanding bench warrant for his arrest. Enriquez was taken into custody without incident and transported to County Jail on the warrant.
  • 3/5/17 at 10:51 am, officers were dispatched to a loitering complaint for 69 year old Fannie Lewis at a business park on Lone Tree Way. Several businesses have called about Lewis over the past week. She had been warned but continued to loiter in front of the businesses. A citizen’s arrest was requested and Lewis was sent to County Jail.
  • 3/5/17 at 8:40 am, an officer observed 47 year old Anthony Smith, 29 year old Joseph Capurro, and 26 year old Joshua Spain-Cue sleeping in front of a business on Delta Fair Blvd. The officer was aware the business had filed a Trespass Letter with the Police Department due to the numerous complaints in regards to transients loitering, sleeping, vandalizing, and littering on the property. All three subjects had been warned in the past and were arrested for trespassing. They were issued citations and released at the scene.
  • 3/5/17 at 1:45 am, officers were dispatched to Sutter Delta Medical Center located on Lone Tree Way for a report of a female patient causing a disturbance. Upon arrival, officers contacted 43 year old Dominique Bryant who was placed under arrest without incident for trespassing. Bryant was sent to County Jail.
  • 3/4/17 at 5:43 pm, officers located a stolen vehicle on Somersville Rd. A high risk stop was conducted and all three occupants were arrested without incident. The driver, 23 year old Hassan Griffin, admitted to stealing the car when it was left running in front of a business earlier. Griffin was sent to County Jail and the two juvenile passengers were released to their parents with juvenile citations.
  • 3/4/17 at 5:40 pm, officers were dispatched to Starbucks on A St. for 60 year old Michael Flores passed out at the counter. Upon arrival, officers found Flores to be highly intoxicated and unable to care for himself. Flores was arrested for public intoxication and transported to County Jail.
  • 3/4/17 at 3:54 pm, an officer contacted 60 year old William Leaks in the parking lot of the Bonfare Market on W. 10th St. Leaks has been warned and cited numerous times previously for loitering and trespassing on the property, where management has made it clear he is not allowed to be on the premises. Leaks was placed under arrest for criminal trespassing and was transported to County Jail.
  • 3/4/17 at 2:52 pm, 28 year old Emmanuel Rader was contacted by police at a residence on Garrow Dr. during a trespassing complaint. Dispatch advised Rader had an outstanding warrant for his arrest. He was arrested without incident and sent to County Jail.
  • 3/3/17 at 5:31 pm, officers observed a black Ford ranger parked in a parking lot in the 1600 block of A St. The officers made consensual contact with 61 year old Ronald Rader, who was standing next to the driver door of the vehicle. They asked his name and he verbally provided it. A name check indicated Rader had a no bail warrant for his arrest. During a search incident to arrest, officers located suspected narcotics in his possession. Rader was arrested and sent to County Jail for drug charges and violation of probation.
  • 3/3/17 at 10:52 am, 30 year old Frank Martinez was stopped for vehicle code violations on G St. near W. 6th St. During the contact, Martinez was searched and found to be in possession of a modified flare gun. Martinez was arrested for weapons violations and later transported to County Jail.
  • 3/2/17 at 6:45 pm, an officer noticed 33 year old Karen Walker approaching him while on a traffic stop on Harbor St. in Pittsburg. He was aware she had an outstanding warrant and was wanted by Antioch Police Detectives. The officer made the arrest without incident, and Walker was eventually booked into County Jail.
  • 3/2/17 at 4:30 pm, an officer observed a white Kia traveling westbound on Hwy 4 near L St. The officer initiated a stop of the Kia for vehicle code violations which eventually ended at Harbor St. and California Dr. in Pittsburg. The driver, 36 year old Victor Adame, was contacted and the only occupant of the vehicle. A record check of Adame showed he was on searchable felony probation for stolen property. During a probation search of the vehicle, a loaded firearm was located under the front passenger seat. Adame denied knowledge of the firearm claiming he borrowed the car from a friend several days earlier; however, Adame’s criminal history showed he was a convicted felon with prior convictions for weapons charges. He was arrested on new weapons charges and sent to County Jail.
  • 3/2/17 at 4:22 pm, officers attempted to contact 34 year old Patrick Howard while he was standing near the Quikstop on Sycamore Dr. Officers knew Howard had a warrant for his arrest. Howard ran from the officers but was caught after a short foot pursuit. He was taken into custody without further incident. Howard was later booked into County Jail.
  • 3/2/17 at 1:23 pm, officers were dispatched to the parking lot outside of City Hall for a suspicious vehicle. They located the vehicle and contacted 58 year old Larry Reynolds. During a routine warrant check, Reynolds was found to have a warrant out of San Joaquin County. He was arrested without incident and booked into County Jail.
  • 3/2/17 at 11:29 am, officers were in the area of Shell Gas on Lone Tree Way when they located a subject that matched description of a person associated with a previous crime at this location. Officers contacted 36 year old Ansu Bailey who was found to have a parole violation warrant. He was arrested without incident and booked into County Jail.
  • 3/2/17 at 10:16 am, dispatch received a call from a resident who advised she had a package just stolen from her porch in the 300 block of W. 19th St. The resident followed the suspect in her vehicle as he rode away on his bicycle. She provided a description of the suspect who was located in the area by responding officers. Officers contacted 29 year old Brandon Hill who admitted to the theft but lied about his name. Hill’s identity was eventually discovered and he was found to have two misdemeanor warrants for his arrest. He was booked into County Jail for the theft and on his warrants.
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Contra Costa Health Services completes cleanup of mercury spill in Antioch

Saturday, March 18th, 2017

Hazardous materials crews completed the cleanup of mercury found in an Antioch neighborhood this week and are working to help residents recognize the toxic metal and prevent future exposure in the community.

The Contra Costa Health Services Hazardous Materials Response Team (HazMat) responded Monday to a complaint of an unidentified silvery substance in the 2200 block of Manzanita Way. The street was closed to through traffic after investigators identified seven separate areas on the block that contained liquid mercury.

Workers from HazMat, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) spent several days searching for and removing the toxic substance along Manzanita Way.

Specialized equipment, including instruments that measure mercury vapor in the air, helped investigators identify the areas impacted by the mercury and reduce the spread of contamination.  The mercury contamination was confined to the street and was not present on the sidewalk and private driveways.  

Local, state and federal officials will continue to monitor the situation for the next few months.

HazMat went door-to-door to share information with concerned residents, and distributed hundreds of bilingual fliers to help them identify mercury and the signs of mercury poisoning, as well as instructions for proper disposal.

Short-term exposure to high levels of mercury can cause nausea and vomiting, skin rashes, eye irritation and increased heart rate. Long-term exposure can cause serious, permanent injury or death. Contra Costa Health Services has received no reports of illness related to the spill.

Investigators did not identify the source of the spill, which was the third of its kind reported in the area since December.

While it is not illegal to possess mercury, it is illegal to dispose of it except at approved household hazardous waste disposal sites.

Contra Costa residents can drop off mercury in a container for free at one of three hazardous waste collection facilities around the county; Delta Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility in Pittsburg, Central Contra Costa Sanitation District in Martinez and West County Resource Recovery in Richmond.

Nobody should handle mercury. Anyone who sees a substance outside of a container that could be mercury should call HazMat at 925-335-3200.

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Antioch activist seeks evidence of Ogorchock’s Brown Act violation complaint against other council members

Saturday, March 18th, 2017

By Allen Payton

During the Antioch Council meeting on Tuesday night, Council Member Lori Ogorchock accused other council members of violating the state’s Brown Act open meeting law by holding “serial” meetings. In addition, she claimed that information from closed session meetings of the council had been shared publicly. Ogorchock asked that the matter be placed on a council agenda “ASAP.”

The Brown Act defines a serial meeting as “a series of communications, each of which involves less than a quorum of the legislative body, but which taken as a whole involves a majority of the body’s members.”

In a letter to Antioch City Attorney Michael Vigilia on Thursday, Antioch Real Estate Broker and long-time resident Mark Jordan asked for evidence to support Ogorchock claims. Jordan successfully sued the city over the misappropriation of money from the sewer and water funds to the police budget, last year.

Following (and attached) is Jordan’s complete letter: Jordan Letter to Vigilia re Brown Act complaint

March 16, 2017

City of Antioch

Mr. Michael G. Vigilia, City Attorney

P.O. Box 5007 Antioch, CA  94531-5007

Dear Mr. Vigilia,

Under the California Public Records Act § 6250 et seq., I am requesting an opportunity to inspect or obtain copies of public records that include but are not limited to the complaint filed by Council Person Ogorchock concerning alleged Brown Act Violations made on March 14, 2017 by her.

I desire to see the formal complaint and the evidence Ms. Ogorchock provided with the complaint.  This evidence should comply with the California Code of Evidence Divisions 1 through 11 inclusive.  It should state the names of witnesses Ms. Ogorchock supplied with her complaint who have first hand and actual knowledge of the alleged events, not simply though hearsay, fabrication, fantasy or alternative facts.

Request is also made for any supporting documents you hold produced by you,

Mr. Steve Duran or Mr. Ron Bernal.

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please inform me if the cost will exceed $50.  However, I would also like to request a waiver of all fees in that the disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest and will contribute significantly to the public’s understanding of the complaint filed by Council Person Ogorchock.  This information is not being sought for commercial purposes.

The California Public Records Act requires a response within ten business days.  If access to the records I am requesting will take longer, please contact me with information about when I might expect copies or the ability to inspect the requested records.

If you deny any part of, or this entire request, please cite each specific exemption you feel justifies the refusal to release the information and notify me of the appeal procedures available to me under the law.

Thank you for addressing my request.

Sincerely,

Mark Jordan

When asked if he had heard back from Vigilia, Jordan said, “The only response from the City Attorney was he received my letter and the only response from Lori was that she submitted it to the correct person.”

“They have 10 business days to respond,” he continued.

“I sent it to everyone on the city council. I believe in total transparency when it comes to government,” Jordan added. “I’m not trying to shoot anyone in the back.”

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Report of shooting leads to chase, Antioch police shooting suspect after he rammed police car, Thursday night

Friday, March 17th, 2017

By Lieutenant D. Bittner #3252, Antioch Police Field Services Bureau

The Antioch Police Department and the Contra Costa County Office of the District Attorney are currently investigating an Officer Involved Shooting. At approximately 10:13 PM on Thursday, March 16, 2017, Antioch Police Officers were dispatched to a reported shooting that was occurring in the 2000 block of Mokelumne Drive. As officers arrived in the area they located an involved vehicle. Officers attempted a traffic stop on the vehicle and the driver failed to stop for officers.

Officers pursued the vehicle and during the pursuit the suspect vehicle rammed an Antioch Police patrol vehicle near Wawona Court. Shots were fired by the officer and the suspect was wounded. A firearm was located in the suspect’s vehicle. The suspect was transported to an area hospital and was treated for his injuries. The suspect is in stable condition at this time. No officers were injured. This investigation is in its early stages and no further information will be released at this time.

Anyone with information regarding this case is encouraged to call Detective Vanderpool with the Antioch Police Department at (925) 779-6988.

Any further informationor additional press releases will be provided by the Investigations Bureau at (925) 779-6939. You may also text a tip to 274637 (CRIMES) using key word ANTIOCH.

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