Archive for June, 2022

Contra Costa DA’s Office, U.S. Dep’t of Labor announce partnership to combat wage theft

Thursday, June 30th, 2022

By Ted Asregadoo, Public Information Officer, Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office

On June 17th, 2022, Contra Costa District Attorney Diana Becton and U.S. Department of Labor Assistant District Director for San Jose Alberto Raymond formalize a partnership to combat wage theft and protect workers’ rights.

Both agencies commemorate the agreement by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the District Attorney’s Office in Martinez. The MOU means the DA’s Office will be devoting resources to prosecute criminal wage theft cases to curtail labor trafficking, unfair business practices, payroll tax evasion, and wage and hour violations. To do this, District Attorney Becton will create a Workplace Justice Unit that’s committed to a fair and equitable workplace.

Becton noted, “While the DA’s Office and the Department of Labor have had an informal relationship on human labor trafficking and wage theft cases since 2014, this Memorandum of Understanding marks the start of a formal five-year partnership to continue our efforts to seek justice for victims of crime.”

Wage theft affects victims in various ways – and at all income levels. Some workers are denied overtime or are paid less than the minimum wage per hour. Some employers also refuse to pay bonuses, vacation pay, or reimbursement of business expenses. According to investigations by the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division in 2021, U.S. workers were denied over 230-million dollars in back pay.1

“Cooperation between federal and local agencies is critical in the fight against all forms of wage theft here in Contra Costa County and elsewhere in the country,” Assistant District Director Raymond said. “The formal renewal of this longstanding partnership highlights our determination and commitment to combat wage theft and to hold their perpetrators accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”

Wage theft is a felony punishable by up to three years in jail. Employers caught stealing from their employees may be personally liable for unpaid wages and face criminal asset forfeiture actions.2

In addition to investigating and prosecuting cases, both agencies will conduct community outreach programs to inform the public about reporting wage theft — as well as provide resources for employers to help them follow labor and payroll tax laws.

If you are a victim of wage theft, call 1-866-4-USWAGE or contact the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office at: DA-ReportFraud@contracostada.org.

1 U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Labor Division (FY 2021) data found a total of $234,280,603.96 in back pay was owed to workers.

2 Pursuant to PC section 186.11

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East Contra Costa Fire to transfer command to Contra Costa Fire District during ceremony Friday morning

Thursday, June 30th, 2022

 

About East Contra Costa County Fire Protection District – The East Contra Costa Fire Protection District (ECCFPD) is a rural-funded fire district that currently operates 3 fire stations and has a 3-station deficit. The District protects a population of more than 128,000 across its 249 square-mile service area. ECCFPD provides firefighting personnel, emergency medical services (basic life support) and fire prevention to the residents and businesses of the cities of Brentwood and Oakley, and unincorporated communities of Discovery Bay, Bethel Island, Knightsen, Byron, Marsh Creek, and Morgan Territory.

About Contra Costa County Fire Protection District (Con Fire) — A recognized fire service leader – Con Fire provides fire and emergency medical services to some 625,000 residents in nine cities and five unincorporated areas across our 304 square-mile jurisdiction. With few exceptions, county emergency ambulance transport services are provided by Con Fire through our unique sub-contractor Alliance model across the District and beyond to include some 520 square miles of the County. In 2021, the District responded to more than 141,000 incidents of all types, including some 55,000 fire and EMS emergencies, and dispatched nearly 100,000 ambulances, providing expert medical care on more than 75,000 ambulance transports. The District, with 26 fire stations and more than 400 employees, is dedicated to preserving life, property, and the environment.

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Police investigate three shooting incidents in Antioch on Friday and Saturday

Wednesday, June 29th, 2022

By Allen D. Payton

According to Antioch Police Strategic Communications Officer Darryl Safford, there were three shooting incidents in the city on Friday and Saturday. No one was injured.

There was a shooting on Friday, June 24 8:37pm. The victim was at home with her young children when she heard shots from the area of 7-11 on the corner of Buchanan Road and Gentrytown Drive. An upstairs window to their home was later discovered to be broken and officers located a bullet inside a closet to the home. The investigation is ongoing.

On Saturday, June 25 at 2:49am, Officers were dispatched to the area of Greystone Court for multiple calls of shots fired after a loud argument was heard. When officers arrived, they located several spent casings in the area. There were no victims, and the investigation is ongoing

Then again on Saturday, June 25, at 4:36pm Officers responded to shots fired in the area of Spanos Way for numerous reports of shots fired. Officers arrived on scene and located numerous spent casings. There were no witnesses, video or reported injuries and the investigation is ongoing.

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Begin Independence Day with a Pancake Breakfast Monday, July 4th

Tuesday, June 28th, 2022

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Carnival Night at Antioch Water Park July 8

Monday, June 27th, 2022

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Three women killed, one from Antioch when Amtrak train hits car near Brentwood Sunday afternoon

Monday, June 27th, 2022

Emergency personnel on scene of the crash that occurred at a rural railroad track crossing in unincorporated Brentwood Sunday afternoon, June 26, 2022. Source: CBS13 video screenshot. Published with permission.

Two other people including child sustain major injuries

The damaged victims’ Honda Civic following the collision with an Amtrak train in unincorporated Brentwood Sunday afternoon, June 26, 2022. Source: KPIX5 video screenshot. Published with permission. Redacted by the Herald.

By Allen D. Payton

Three people were killed, and two others were injured when an Amtrak train hit a car near Brentwood Sunday afternoon.

According to Con Fire PIO Steve Hill, at 1:00 P.M. in the 3000 block of Orwood Road located in unincorporated Brentwood, a single passenger vehicle was struck by a west bound train with 85 people aboard. Three people were pronounced dead on scene. Two other victims were air lifted due to major injuries. The scene was turned over to the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office and BNSF Railway.

“A third person was transported due to unrelated medical conditions,” East Contra Contra Fire Protection District PIO Steve Aubert added.

East Contra Costa County Firefighters transport a victim to an ambulance from the destroyed Honda Civic. Screenshot of video by Art Ray. Published with permission.

The Contra Costa Coroner’s Office released the identities of the victims. Mercedes Regalado aged 50 of Antioch, Maria Nieves, 27, and Julia Mondragon, 40, both of Dixon died when the Honda Civic they were in struck as it crossed the railroad tracks.

A report by CBS13 Sacramento included video of the scene showing the damaged car and according to that report, nobody on board the train was hurt.

According to CHP-Contra Costa PIO Lane Adams, “the collision is being investigated by BNSF railroad police.” An effort to reach BNSF Rail spokesman Juan Acosta for additional details on Monday was unsuccessful.

Please check back later for any updates to this report.

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Motorcycles entertain the fans at Antioch Speedway

Monday, June 27th, 2022

Tony Meiring #1 on his way to the Pro Am heat race win. He swept all three of his races. Photo by Katrina Kniss

By Candice Martin, DCRR Racing Media

Antioch, CA…June 25…The flat track motorcycles invaded Antioch Speedway for a special night of racing on the 3/8 mile clay oval track. Over a dozen different classifications of bikes took their turns on the speedway in heat race and Main Event competition. However, the focus was on the Pro Am division, which competed for a $1,000 prize.

There were eight competitors for the Pro Am class, and the Top 4 heat race finishers would earn the right to compete in the winner take all $500 Dash for Cash. After winning the 10-lap heat race, Tony Meiring proceeded to score the big victory in the four lap Trophy Dash.

Meiring had his eyes on the $1,000 prize in the 20 lap Main Event, and he led that race from the outset. Brandon Weller moved into second on Lap 2, and Chris McDougall battled his way into third. They would finish in that order with Meiring the happy winner.

Donnie Darrah #48 led the pack in both the 230 Motorcycle heat race and Main Event. Photo by Katrina Kniss

The 12-lap Running Of The Bulls event didn’t have quite the first prize that was originally intended due to sponsorship pulling out at the last minute. However, the drivers on hand competed for $500 to win. After winning the 10-lap heat race, Blake Ash proceeded to win the 12-lap Main Event. Jonathan Schaefer was second ahead of William McDonnell.

The Schaefer name was at the head of the pack in the 85cc class, which brought nine riders to the show. Colton Schaefer won the 12-lap Main Event ahead of Rider Fitz-Hay and Jeff Katarzy. Schaefer and Chris Knox picked up their respective 10-lap heat race wins.

The 250 class saw Myles Henderson win their 12-lap Main Event ahead of James Arraiz and Christian Knox. Henderson also won the 10-lap heat race.

Donnie Darrah opened the evening with the Vintage A 10-lap heat race win and followed that up by holding off William McDonnell and Larry Greene to win the 12-lap Main Event.

Ryder Meiring #56 and C Elscholz #199 battle for position in the Peewee heat race. Photo by Katrina Kniss

The Peewee class for kids four- to six years old proved to be very popular, and Indy Tallent won the 12-lap feature ahead of C Elscholz and Ryder Meiring. Tallent also picked up the win in the 10-lap heat race.

The 100-150 4 Stroke win went to Dean Rabideau ahead of Ryder Fitz-Hay. Pedro Brown won the 12-lap Hooligan Main Event ahead of Dean Thompson and Victor Tallent.

The event ran smoothly from the start with only one crash stopping the action for fallen rider Joe Pereira. Pereira was shaken up in the incident on the back straightaway, but he was said to be doing well after a trip to the hospital.

This Saturday night is an off week for the speedway, but action resumes on July 9th with the Hetrick Memorial race. Extra money will be on the line for the event that will feature the IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds, IMCA Stock Cars and Pacific Coast General Engineering Hobby Stocks. For further information, go to www.antiochspeedway.com.

 

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Antioch man arrested for selling, possession of illegal, stolen guns, drugs Sunday morning

Monday, June 27th, 2022

Illegal guns and drugs seized by Antioch Police Sunday morning, June 26, 2022. Photos: APD

Suspect has record of arrests over past three years

By Darryl Safford, Antioch Police Strategic Communications Officer

Multiple officers participated in the probation search at the W. 20th Street apartment complex.

While you were hopefully enjoying family time on a warm summer’s day, your officers were busy getting illegal firearms off the street, Sunday morning, June 26, 2022.

Both our Blue Day Shift and Blue Graveyard crews teamed up for a probation search of a known subject that was selling firearms out of his apartment. With great investigative work by Officer Milner, they were able to develop leads on their target that subsequently led to the recovery of a stolen Glock pistol, a second loaded Glock that was illegally possessed, a large quantity of Xanax pills, and about five pounds of marijuana.

William Ponce-Ramirez, a 21-year-old Hispanic male out of Antioch was arrested and transported to the Martinez Detention Facility. According to localcrimenews.com, he was previously arrested in February 2019 by the Chico PD for possession of alcoholic beverage by a minor, in November 2020 by the Contra Costa Sheriff’s Department for WARRANT – Warrants Or Holds Only, 29800(A)1 – Addict in Possession of Firearm, 25850A – Carrying Loaded Firearm On Person Or In Vehicle While In Public Place, 25400(A)1 – Carry Concealed Weapon in Vehicle, 25850C6 – Carry Loaded Firearm When Not the Registered Owner and 27545 – Unlicensed Sale/Loan Trade Of Firearm. Ponce-Ramirez was also arrested, last July, again by the Sheriff’s Department for WARRANT – Warrants Or Holds Only.

The Antioch Police Department is dedicated to the reduction of gun violence in our community. With the assistance of our UAV, CNT, SWAT team, and Gang Unit the streets of our city are a little safer. Thank you to community for your ongoing and constant support. We appreciate you #safestreets #gunviolenceprevention.

Allen D. Payton contributed to this report.

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