Archive for November, 2017

Antioch Panthers end season strong in semi-finals versus Freedom Falcons

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

The Panthers scored another touchdown making it 33-31 Antioch with 7:52 left to go in the game. But it wasn’t enough for victory. Photos by Allen Payton

By Jesus Cano

In a flash, during the North Coast Section Division 1 semi-final game last Saturday night, Freedom’s Giles Jackson shattered the hearts of many Antioch High football fans and players, especially the seniors, as his seven-yard run in overtime helped seal the ticket for the Falcons to win the game 45-39. They advance to their first ever NCS Division I championship game and will face Brentwood’s Liberty High Lions in their first championship appearance in over 100 years, at Heritage High, Saturday night, Dec. 2.

Freedom’s Giles Jackson runs it in for a touchdown in OT winning the game 45-39. They head to the NCS Division 1 Championship game for the first time ever as the song “Hang on Snoopy” played over the loudspeaker at the Falcons’ stadium.

Many of Antioch’s players had their heads down, with tears running down their eyes which is perfectly normal reaction to have. Especially when some of these players will never be able to play another snap of football in a black and gold uniform.

According to the experts, Antioch was not supposed to get this far. The Panthers were not supposed to receive a number three seed in the NCS playoffs. Let alone, Antioch was not even supposed to win two games.

But they did, and they should be pretty satisfied with this season for shutting all the doubters up.

Najee Harris is a familiar name throughout the entire Bay Area, but Antioch is not a one-player team. They clearly asserted that with their performance.

Offensively, they had Dalaan Green getting a majority of the carries leading the team in rushing with 1,059 yards, followed by athlete Omari Harris backing him up when it came to power drives.

Antioch scored again tying the game at 39 with 3:40 left to play. The Panthers were going to attempt a 2-point conversion. But with two penalties totaling 20 yards Antioch chose to kick and it was blocked again, for the third time in the game.

However, Willem Karnthong was the best of both worlds. Not only did he break the record for the most career touchdowns in Antioch history, but he is on pace to break the record for most career touchdowns. Essentially, making him the statistically best quarterback in Antioch’s history. And he has a whole campaign left in him.

He had a plethora of options to throw to, including junior Gaudie Campbell and senior Isaiah Avery.

Defensively, Antioch had one of the most dangerous offensive lines with Garrett Robinson and Timmy Dorsey. In fact, Robinson was robbed out of the Bay Valley Athletic League MVP award. The achievement instead went to Liberty’s Nicky Einess.

The most impressive performance by Antioch was during the Big Little Game against Pittsburg. Yes, they lost 14-12, but they were the team that came closest to beating the BVAL champs. Pitt beat the two teams in the championship game, blanking Liberty 35-0 and besting Freedom 47-32.

The Panthers will come back strong, fierce and hungrier than ever to win next year’s BVAL title. Antioch will have plenty of weapons remaining in their arsenal including junior linebacker and tight and Vinny Ballardo, along with sophomore DeJuan Butler.

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Next Antioch Neighborhood Cleanup is this Saturday, Dec. 2

Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

The Antioch Police Department is excited to announce the 86th installment of the Neighborhood Cleanup Program. This is a collaborative community effort which involves active participation from The Antioch Police Department Crime Prevention Commission; Neighborhood Watch Program; Volunteers in Police Service; community volunteers and the Public Works Department.

Collectively, “We”, everyone who works and lives in the City Antioch, can make a difference and improve the quality of life. It’s our community and it’s our chance to make a difference.

The City of Antioch Neighborhood Cleanup program is not just for residential neighborhoods. It is a program that will change venues on a monthly basis and it will include business and commercial areas as well. Neighborhoods that are free of trash and refuse are inviting, and a clean community instills a sense of community pride.

The 86th Neighborhood Cleanup event will occur on Saturday, December 2, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. We will be cleaning the neighborhood near Williamson Ranch Park from Hillcrest, Lone Tree Way, Furlong Way, Indian Hill Drive and Morgan Way. Volunteers will meet at Williamson Ranch Park and park in the parking lot. (See map).

Volunteers will receive instructions and the equipment necessary to accomplish the goal. The targeted area is within walking distance. Excluding inclement weather, future Neighborhood Cleanup events are scheduled for the first Saturday of every month and the locations will be announced in advance.

Remember, cleaning up your neighborhood can make life better for your family, your neighbors and your community!

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Antioch Police arrest three for car theft Tuesday afternoon

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Two car theft suspects sit in handcuffs on the curb, while a third stands against a tree and speaks with an Antioch Police Officer, Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 28, 2017. Photos by APD

From APD Facebook page

On Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 28, 2017 an alert citizen spotted an APD motorcycle officer in the area of Empire Ave. and Neroly Rd. and alerted him to suspicious people seen walking away from a vehicle in the area of Laurel Rd. and the SR-4 Bypass. Ofc. Johnsen saw three people walking on Laurel Rd., now in the City of Oakley, and when he reached the car the citizen was concerned about, he quickly learned it had been reported as stolen to the Antioch Police yesterday afternoon.

Ofc. Johnsen was able to relocate the subjects he had seen moments earlier, and the investigation led to all three (a 35-year-old male from Antioch, a 21-year-old male from Antioch, and a 20-year-old female from Brentwood) being arrested for vehicle theft.

This is another example of an alert and concerned citizen taking the time to report suspicious activity to the police, and it not only led to arrests being made, but also helped the victim of this crime have their vehicle returned to them in just over a day’s time! Thanks to not only this person, but everyone that helps us in our daily responses to calls from the public. We rely on you, and without you, many of these incidents would go undetected!


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Antioch police, Harbormaster rescue Antioch man from river Monday afternoon

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Antioch Police officers on the Harbormaster’s boat prepare to rescue a man in the river, Monday afternoon, Nov. 27, 2017. Photos by APD

From APD Facebook page

Early Monday afternoon, Nov. 27, 2017 the Antioch Police Department received calls regarding a male that was seen in the water in the area of the river north of the Antioch Lumber building. The calls advised that the person was yelling for help, and appeared in distress.

Antioch Police officer with rescued man head back to shore.

Officers quickly arrived in the area, and found that the man (a 25-year-old Antioch man), was several hundred feet out from shore and appeared in need of assistance. Law enforcement water support wasn’t immediately available, so officers responded to the Antioch Marina, and contacted Harbormaster James Pflueger who immediately assisted with the use of his boat.

The man was successfully rescued from his predicament, and was transported to a local hospital for treatment of hypothermia as the water temperature was less than 60 degrees. The circumstances surrounding how the man ended up in the water remain under investigation, but a happy ending nonetheless to quite a scary situation.

According to Sgt. Dee described the man as Hispanic, shirtless and “5150”, a reference to a section of California state law which means he was a danger to himself and others.

Allen Payton contributed to this report.


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Cypress Meadows sold, becomes TreVista offering Club Med-like experience for seniors

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

The senior assisted living facility formerly known as Cypress Meadows is now TreVista Antioch.

Working to make every day “magical”, one of 19 facilities by company that pioneer senior assisted living 

By Allen Payton

Opening their 19th location with their acquisition of the former Cypress Meadows Assisted Living facility in Antioch, Agemark Senior Living Communities has renamed it TreVista Antioch and is bringing a new approach of a Club Med-like experience for seniors to East County.

The 10-acre campus is “not a skilled nursing facility,” but offers “both assisted living and memory care to enhance the lives of our residents,” said Senior Care Consultant Amanda Stewart.

She mentioned “many changes are happening, including a new water feature, a new theater,” making the place “more resident friendly and focused.”

The entrance to TreVista Antioch.

They’re part of “a multimillion dollar renovation project that will truly establish TreVista Antioch as the Bay Area’s premier senior living community,” according to their website,

When asked why they chose Antioch, Agemark co-founder and CEO Richard Westin said, “There are a lot of people who need our services in town.”

The Orinda-based company is a pioneer in senior assisted living having introduced the type of facilities to the market.

“We’ve been doing this for 35 years,” Westin explained. “When we first began nobody knew what assisted living was. In the 1980’s it was educating the public.”

The only options were retirement homes of up to six beds or convalescent homes.

“The concept of vibrant, assisted living for people whose average age is 87 didn’t exist other than a convalescent home which was really no place that anyone wanted to go to,” he stated. “It gave senior housing a steep road to climb, because of the significantly, negative reputation that convalescent hospitals had. They (seniors) were just being stored, because people couldn’t take care of them at home.

“The world has changed,” Westin said. “We recognize every one of our residents has a story to tell and wisdom to provide the next generation. There are wonderful opportunities that assisted living provides that didn’t previously exist, that allows people to thrive.”

Agemark does things differently than other facilities. According to their website, their mission and the “Promise” includes the following: “It is our mission, privilege and responsibility to provide the kind of care we want for our own loved ones, fostering a healthy body, agile mind and joyful spirit. We promise to ‘Nurture and grow our communities and the people who work and live in them,’ ‘Actively listen, constantly innovate, and serve with pride and joy,’ and ‘Empower and encourage staff to respond to residents and their families with compassion and respect.’”

Richard Westin, Founder & CEO of AgeMark

“My background is Club Med,” Westin (who said he is unrelated to the hotel chain of the same name) shared. “I used to teach sailing in the summer and skiing in the winter in Europe. I was the first American to ever work for Club Med. It started in 1954 and I started working for them in 1961 at age 20.”

“I didn’t realize at the time I wasn’t teaching people to sail and ski,” he continued. “I myself was learning the hospitality business and 55 years later I’m able to provide a Club Med-like experience for 87-year-olds.”

“First it was for 20-year-olds now it’s for 80-year-olds,” Westin said with a laugh. “Fun is fun. Dancing and going to the zoo, high school and semi-professional sporting events, depending on the location.”

“Engaging with kindergartners and older folks in meaningful activities is really a valuable thing,” he added.

Westin then shared his philosophy of how the facilities operate, with the goal of making every day magical for their residents

“Whenever you say ‘good-night’ to one of our residents it may in fact be ‘good-bye’. So, it is our responsibility to make sure that their previous day was magical,” he stated. “And if we can do that every day we will have made a difference in the lives of the people we take care of and will have accomplished our goal.”

“I’m passionate about what I do,” Westin continued. “At 76 I get up every day and I’m delighted to go to work because I care about the wellbeing of our residents and their families because I know they’re going through a difficult time. We don’t just get a resident we get a family. They never need to call because we’re always ready to show them a clean, happy environment.”

Westin shared about an experience one of their facilities offered to a resident who had never been to a game of her favorite major league baseball team. She got to throw out the first pitch, meet the players after the game and was greeted with a

“We try to do that all the time,” he shared

They’re going through the approval process for six additional locations all in California.

It’s a family run business.

“My son (Forrest) is my business partner and it’s great,” he added.

His partner Jesse Pittore is retired but his son Michael Pittore, a graduate of De La Salle High – who was part of the football team that kept their winning streak going to 101 games – is also part of the ownership team.

“So, we have the two younger generation and me,” Westin shared. “And if I’m healthy I plan to work another 20 years.”

TreVista is located at 3950 Lone Tree Way across the street from Sutter Delta Medical Center. For more information call (925) 329-6296 or visit

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Multiple Christmas events and activities at Somersville Towne Center in December

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

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Antioch Council to consider signing bonuses for recruiting lateral police officers at Tuesday meeting

Monday, November 27th, 2017

An effort to increase number of sworn from current 96 to 103 budgeted and 111 promised

By Allen Payton

At their meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 28 the Antioch City Council will consider offering signing bonuses of $10,000 each, to help attract and recruit police officers from other agencies to come to work for the Antioch Police Department. It is part of a proposed employee referral and recruitment program that includes signing bonus/incentives for qualified lateral police officers. The effort is expected to help increase sooner the number of sworn officers, which has been a struggle since the Measure C half-cent sales tax was placed on the ballot and passed in 2013. Police recruiting bonuses ACC112817 Item 9

Currently the city has 96 sworn officers on the force, just seven more than the 89 when Measure C was placed on the ballot in 2013. The staff report states that since Measure C passed, “forty-nine (49) sworn officers have been hired. During that same period however, thirty-five (35) sworn officers have separated employment, resulting in only a net gain of fourteen (14) sworn officers.” However, seven of the positions were funded in the 2013-14 budget, approved before the sales tax measure passed and collection of the additional revenues began.

The mayor and council at that time stated there were 89 sworn officers on the force and promised to hire 22 additional sworn officers immediately if voters passed Measure C to increase the total number of sworn officers to 111. However, the city budget only includes a total of 103 sworn officers in this fiscal year’s budget and 104 in next year’s.

The staff report explains that the “The fiscal impact will be determined solely by the number of lateral applicants hired while the program is in effect. Per lateral officer, the fiscal impact is estimated to be $23,253. This assumes the lateral officer is hired at Step E and is eligible to take

advantage of the full incentive package. However, financial incentives are distributed in three separate increments over the course of three years, and leave incentives would be taken in much smaller increments (if at all). lt is believed most, if not all, of the costs would be covered through salary savings from vacancies.”

The report further explains the reason for the proposed incentives. “The recruitment of qualified lateral applicants for the position of police officer is becoming increasingly difficult, as the job market is very open and competitive. Recently, the department scheduled interviews for five lateral officers from four different agencies, and none of them showed up. Additionally, we had two recent lateral hires (from Oakland PD) that quit and returned back to their agency in large part due to financial incentives Oakland offered for them to return. Many departments have adopted recruitment incentives to attract qualified laterals,” including Palo Alto, Modesto, Fairfield and BART. Incentives offered by those department range in size from $10,000 to $25,000.

The matter is the final item on the agenda for council meeting which begins at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall, located at W. Third, W. Second and H Streets in downtown. You can also watch it live on local cable access channel 24 or livestreaming on the city’s website at

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Antioch Police force adds another officer, recruited from Brentwood PD

Monday, November 27th, 2017

Antioch Police Chief Tammany Brooks with Officer Morteza Amiri. Photo courtesy of APD

From the Antioch Police Department Facebook posted page on Monday, November 27, 2017

Please say hello to the newest member of the Antioch PD family, Officer Morteza Amiri. Pictured here with Chief Tammany Brooks, Morteza was sworn in today. He is a lateral officer from the Brentwood Police Department, and comes to us with 3 years of experience.

Morteza was born and raised in the Bay Area, and attended high school in Dublin. After high school, Morteza attended Los Positas College before working as a Loss Prevention Agent for both Old Navy and Target in Antioch.

Morteza is an Antioch homeowner, and is excited to be able to work with the community and his peers to combat crime in Antioch. He currently attends California Coast University, and is pursuing his Bachelor’s degree.

When he is not working, Morteza can be found hiking with his 18-month -ld Belgian Malinois. He also enjoys traveling and trying different types of food.

A fun fact about Officer Amiri is that because he has always admired the Antioch Police Department, he would sometimes switch his radio from the Brentwood radio channel and accidentally answer up to respond to the Antioch PD calls…….guess it was meant to be!

Congratulations Morteza and welcome!

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