Archive for December, 2018

Antioch Police arrest man with outstanding warrants, drugs, stolen gun and credit cards Sunday morning

Monday, December 24th, 2018

The loaded., stolen gun discarded by the suspect during chase with Antioch Police Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018. Photos by APD

The suspect following his arrest by APD Officers.

From APD Facebook page

Another one of the great examples of how awesome neighbors help us every day!!
This morning (Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018), at 5:44 am, we received a call from a neighbor in the area of Prewett Ranch Drive and Summerfield Drive who was reporting that she had seen a subject on her surveillance cameras checking vehicle doors in the Prewett Ranch corridor.

She gave a good description of the suspect, and upon officers’ arrival, he fled from them. Officers gave chase, and during the foot pursuit, the suspect threw a loaded pistol. The subject was ultimately apprehended and arrested, and the gun was recovered. He had numerous warrants, drug paraphernalia, stolen credit cards, and the gun was reported stolen during a vehicle burglary two weeks ago.

Without diligent neighbors calling in suspicious people, we oftentimes would never know about this kind of activity. Thank you again, Antioch, and this neighbor that helped us get a gun off the streets today!

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Supervisors promote solar energy development in rural areas, parking lots, freeway cloverleafs

Saturday, December 22nd, 2018

Forgive $5.8 million in library book late fees dating back to 1995; Honor Choice in Aging’s Debbie Toth who serves Antioch’s Bedford Center as Board Chair Recipient

By Daniel Borsuk

The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors flashed the green light for Contra Costa County Development and Conservation Department (DCD) officials to conduct additional studies on how solar power can be expanded, especially in the Far East environmentally sensitive Delta areas of Bethel Island and Jersey Island.

Supervisors also allowed county planners to study the feasibility of identifying underutilized parking lots countywide that could be used as solar farms in partnership with MCE, the main electricity provider for unincorporated Contra Costa County and the cities of Concord, Danville, Martinez, Oakley, Pinole, Pittsburg, and San Ramon.

Freeway cloverleafs are also on the DCD’s list of potential new sites for renewable energy.

“Fifty to eighty percent of the county could be used for renewable energy,” Jody London, a DCD official, told supervisors.  London said solar energy represents 85 percent of the renewable energy that could be developed on rural land.  The remaining 15 percent would be energy generated from wind power or biomass.

London said the county could also expand solar energy by issuing more permits to homeowners to install solar panels on roofs.

The house rooftop option drew the support of District 3 Supervisor Dianne Burgis of Brentwood, whose district also covers Bethel Island and Jersey Island.  “I’d be open to option one,” she said.  “We have so many rooftops in Contra Costa County.  I’d like to work with MCE.”

Board chair Karen Mitchoff of Pleasant Hill cautioned DCD staff that she was uncertain the DCD recommendation concerning 450-acre Jersey Island as a potential solar power farm might run into opposition from the island’s owner, the Ironhouse Sanitary District.

London said she would look into that issue.

“We support development of solar energy on brownfield sites, parking lots and infill areas such as freeway cloverleafs,” Bill Chilson of the Mount Diablo Audubon Society wrote in a letter to the supervisors.  The environmental organization opposes wind and solar development in the Delta agricultural and wildlife areas, Chilson wrote.

Juan Pablo Galwan, Save Mt. Diablo Land Use Manager, criticized the plan, writing:

“Advances in solar technology may increase the frequency of collocation or allow an area of land to concurrently be farmed and produce solar energy without negatively impacting or perhaps even increasing crop productivity.  However, currently the most likely scenario is that solar development removes land from most or all ties of agricultural production for the duration of lease which may last several decades.  Therefore, the county renewable energy policies should not encourage solar development on viable agricultural land.”

A $47,000 grant from the California Strategic Growth Council developed the energy study for the County.

Supervisors Approve $362,505 State Grant for 2020 Census

The county is getting ready for the 2020 census and took its first step when supervisors unanimously accepted a $362,505 County-Option Outreach Agreement grant from the state.

The grant will aid the county in developing communications and outreach strategies that will target both geographic and demographic populations who are least likely to respond to the 2020 census.

Barbara Rivera of the Contra Costa County Administrators Office said the upcoming census will be the first one where Californians can respond by going online, but this raised cyber security issues from Julia Marks of the Asian Law Caucus.  “There is a lot fear over confidentiality,” said Marks.

Choice in Aging’s Debbie Toth Honored as Board Chair Recipient

Debbie Toth, the Chief Executive Officer of Choice in Aging, was honored by the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors Chair Karen Mitchoff, as Board Chair Recipient for 2018.

Mitchoff, of Pleasant Hill, selected Toth, who was named CEO of Choice in Aging in 2012 that serves 600 senior citizens in residential facilities at the Bedford Center in Antioch and the Mt. Diablo Center in Pleasant Hill, for being an advocate for senior access to housing, health and transit.

Mitchoff, who was re-elected to the District 3 supervisorial seat in June, cited her personal experience with her mother as a key factor in nominating the CIA’s Chief Executive Officer for the award.

After Tuesday’s meeting, it is expected District 1 Supervisor John Gioia of Richmond will be elected as Chair of the Board   when supervisors reconvene at their next regular meeting slated for January 15, 2019.

Supervisors Forgive $5.8 Million in Library Book Late Fees Dating Back to 1995

A week after the Board of Supervisors made the historic move to eliminate the practice of collecting overdue book and material fees, they approved on a 5-0 vote to discharge about $5,800,100 from public library patron accounts.

The agenda consent item did not attract public comment.

The bookkeeping item covers uncollected fees dating back to 1995 to the present, County Librarian Melinda Cervantes wrote in a report to the Board.  “Of this amount, 73 percent is the value of materials, not cash outstanding.”  There is no financial impact on the county general fund.

Last week supervisors adopted the library commission’s recommendation to cease the collection of overdue book fines beginning Jan. 1, 2019 based on the recommendations in a policy titled Project Equitable Access with the goal of ensuring everyone has access to library materials.

To view the entire meeting agenda, click here.

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Frank Ballesteros’ Humbug performances continue today through Monday at Antioch Historical Society Museum

Saturday, December 22nd, 2018

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Antioch police arrest Richmond teen for July murder of one, shooting of two other teens

Saturday, December 22nd, 2018

Suspect arrested: Angel Leoncio Bautista. Photo by APD

By Sergeant John Fortner, Antioch Police Department, Investigations Bureau, Violent Crimes Unit

During the course of this investigation, evidence was obtained that led to the identification of one of the suspects involved in the shooting homicide of the victim, and the injury of two others.

On Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018 at approximately 12:00 pm, detectives from the Antioch Police Department’s Investigations Bureau, with the assistance of Richmond Police Department officers, arrested Angel Leoncio Bautista (19 years old) at his residence in the City of Richmond. Bautista was peacefully taken into custody and later booked into the Martinez Detention Facility.

On July 30, 2018 at 1:17 a.m., Antioch Police dispatch received several calls reporting multiple gunshots at a business complex located in the 2700 block of Hillcrest Avenue. (See related article)

When officers arrived at the complex, they located two males down on the ground in the parking lot. One male victim sustained multiple gunshot wounds and succumbed to his injuries at the scene. The second male (16 years-old) was located a short distance away and he was also suffering from gunshot wounds. Officers began first aid as fire department paramedics were called to the scene. The surviving victim was stabilized and transported to a local area hospital where he was taken into surgery.

While officers were still at the scene, they were advised that a shooting victim arrived at a local emergency room for treatment. Officers responded to the hospital and determined that this was an additional victim who was related to the shooting in the parking lot. No additional victims have come forward or have been identified at this time.

At this time, evidence suggests that the victims were involved in a confrontation with another group of unknown subjects in the parking lot when gunshots were fired.

The area was designated a crime scene and cordoned off. The Antioch Police Department’s Investigations Bureau was notified and responded to the scene. This incident is currently under investigation, and evidence is being collected.

The investigation into this incident remains ongoing, and anyone with information is asked to call the Antioch Police Department non-emergency line at (925)778-2441 or Detective Colley at (925)779-6922. You may also text-a-tip to 274637 (CRIMES) using the key word ANTIOCH.

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Celebrate New Year’s Eve either at Smith’s Landing Seafood Grill

Friday, December 21st, 2018

For those who won’t be attending the party in the Marina Room and wish to have dinner, Smith’s Landing Seafood Grill will offer dinner and will be open until midnight. For reservations call (925) 775-4862 or online at www.smithslandingantioch.com.

 

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Fontana Youth Foundation to hold Black Tie New Year’s Eve event at Lone Tree Golf & Event Center

Friday, December 21st, 2018

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Contra Costa County launches Human Trafficking Task Force with $1.2 million federal grant

Thursday, December 20th, 2018

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

Contra Costa County recently received $1.2 million under the Federal Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) to establish a new Human Trafficking Task Force. Under the three-year grant from OVC, $500,000 is going to the Employment and Human Services Department (EHSD) for victim services and $700,000 goes to the District Attorney’s Office. This federal grant will assist both departments in developing this multidisciplinary task force that will implement victim-centered and coordinated approaches to identify victims of sex and labor trafficking through services and investigating and prosecuting these trafficking cases.

The Task Force will be an enhancement of the Contra Costa County Rescue and Restore Coalition (commonly referred to as the Human Trafficking Coalition) that was jointly formed with the Office of the District Attorney, EHSD and other partners in 2009 to address human trafficking in our county and the greater Bay Area. The Task Force’s “core team” will be co-chaired by Assistant District Attorney Venus D. Johnson and the Director of the Alliance to End Abuse Devorah Levine to ensure effective and efficient collaboration between investigation and prosecution and victim support and services.

To further combat trafficking in the county, District Attorney Diana Becton recently created a Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit within the District Attorney’s Office, which will be staffed by a dedicated sex trafficking prosecutor, Deputy District Attorney Dana Filkowski.

“Our law enforcement partners will be able to focus on the growing problems associated with human trafficking in our community with this task force,” Becton stated. “We know that sharing confidential information and conducting complex investigations is challenging and resource intensive. However, with this new framework, we can prosecute those perpetrators who often times go unnoticed and provide comprehensive services to victims of trafficking. We have to keep raising awareness with the public and our law enforcement partners about the real threats that human trafficking poses to Contra Costa County.”

The Human Trafficking Task Force of Contra Costa County will be a collaboration of local, state and federal law enforcement agencies working together with victim service organizations to; 1) better identify all types of human trafficking victims; 2) enhance investigation and prosecution of all types of human trafficking; 3) address the individualized needs of all identified human trafficking victims by linking them to comprehensive services; 4) enhance awareness of human trafficking among law enforcement and service providers, as well as within the broader Contra Costa community; and 5) improve trauma-informed practices for human trafficking victims within law enforcement and victim service providers.

Task Force partners on the law enforcement side, headed by the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s office, will include agencies such as the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the F.B.I. and local law enforcement agencies. Task Force partners on the victim service side, headed by Contra Costa County’s Alliance to End Abuse, include Calli House Youth Shelter (Contra Costa Behavioral Health Services), Community Violence Solutions, Bay Area Legal Aid, International Rescue Committee, and STAND! For Families Free of Violence.

Contra Costa County is a natural corridor for human trafficking activities with its linkage to major metropolitan areas like Oakland and San Francisco via public transportation (BART) and its accessibility to Los Angeles and Sacramento via major highways such as 680, 80 and 5 (via Hwy 4). Though human trafficking is illegal, victims often do not know where to turn for help and community members may not know where to report suspicious situations.

The Contra Costa Human Trafficking Task Force, in partnership with the Contra Costa Human Trafficking Coalition will be working with local agencies to raise awareness about human trafficking in Contra Costa County throughout the month of January. The FBI has identified California as one of the nation’s top destination states for trafficked persons.

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Jim Boccio honored with tree, plaque in City Park for serving Antioch’s senior community

Thursday, December 20th, 2018

Jim Boccio, Sr. (fourth from right), with his wife Phyllis and Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock, is surrounded by his family and friends at the presentation of the plaque to be placed next to his tree in City Park. Photo by City of Antioch.

Friends and family, including Council Member Lori Ogorchock and representatives of The Bedford Center, met at City Park last week to present the dedication plaque to much-beloved champion of volunteering, Jim Boccio who selflessly devotes his time serving our senior community.

The plaque will be placed next to Jim’s tree which City of Antioch Public Works has been caring for and nurturing since the planting ceremony in September.

The Bedford Center offers Alzheimer’s Care, Adult Day Care, Assisted Living, and Nursing Care senior care options for elderly adults in Antioch. It is located at 1811 C Street.

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