A tip from San Joaquin County’s sheriff led Merced County investigators to crack down on animal abuses at the Portuguese bloodless bullfights in Stevinson. Now, like a boxing show, there needs to be a (bull)ringside doctor and someone to inspect the gear to make sure it can’t injure the bulls.
Operation 9-2-99 volunteers’ latest effort to clean up the Tuolumne River pulled 5 tons of trash, tires and other junk from the riverbed. The good news is that organizers say that as more people use the river for recreation, the dumpers and polluters are moving out.
After trying to stop 24-year-old Christopher Fletcher on his bicycle in December, two Modesto police officers followed him into a downtown parking garage. As he tried to pull out a handgun, they opened fire, killing him. Six months later, his grieving mother and father want to understand why the officers couldn’t try to defuse the situation instead of firing.
Homeowners already pay property taxes that fund police, fire and other city services. Should the city begin billing insurers for first-responder medical services by fire department paramedics and EMTs? A district near Sacramento gets $450,000 a year from the fees. Modesto could generate $1 million, fire chief says.
Knights Ferry’s 136-year-old post office closed abruptly in March, leaving residents to drive into Oakdale to do their postal business. But they kept after the Postal Service to re-open it, and got help from Rep. Jeff Denham’s staff. Last Friday, less than a day after 100 townfolk met with a postal official, Knights Ferry’s post office was back in business.
Many prominent intersections have become campaign-sign meccas for candidates trying to get their names known and gain voters’ trust. There’s more behind the scenes when it comes to placing, replacing and displacing them to benefit one candidate over another.
More than a year ago, Oakdale began construction of a catch basin to handle runoff near an old dump site. But sinkholes began to concern the residents who live next to it, both for the safety of kids who played there and also because they had no idea where the water went underground. This week, a crew came into investigate and uncovered a 45-foot-deep brick cistern likely built in the 1880s and used fire protection. A piece of history unearthed.
Once again, the presidential candidates have ignored Modesto. The last time one campaigned here was in June 2007, when John McCain came to town well behind in the polls. A few months later, he was in the lead. Just sayin’ ...
One of the lesser-known laws on the books is the “firefighter’s rule,” which prevents most firefighters and other safety officers from civilly suing for injuries suffered while doing their jobs. The rule says they know the risks going in, and that most are covered by workers’ compensation. But it is never that simple, as a former Tuolumne County firefighter can attest after falling into a mine and shattering his ankle after extinguishing a blaze in 2011.
Remains found near Pinecrest not yet identified and could be weeks before they are, Tuolumne County Sheriff’s officials said. Getting word out helped identify 1971 murder victim during cold case investigation 37 years later.
A Sierra resident came across and reported finding human remains near Pinecrest last week, leaving many people to wonder whether they will finally know what happened to a loved one. Two missing persons cases go back more than a decade while others are more recent but just as devastating to family members. One family will get answers. The rest, tragically, will be left to keep wondering.
The mid-1970s sale of McClure Ranch to the city of Modesto came with big plans, but no money or follow through. More than 100 pieces of furniture and other items deeded from the McClures were stored in John Muir School, and three-fourths were lost in the 2007 blaze. If you want to see any of the collection on display now, you need to visit McHenry Mansion, not the McClure place.
The recent video posted online in which some Central Catholic students made death threats against an African American student jolted the community. Members of the local clergy council, meanwhile, were equally alarmed by an incident involving a pot-smoking but unarmed young man and an off-duty Ripon police officer they believe could have turned tragic in a flash.
Before Scott Peterson, Cary Stayner or any of the other more high-profile defendants from the Valley went to prison, Modesto experienced Elbert Lee Easley. In fact, Easley’s 1979 murder trial was outsourced to Monterey County because the case drew so much media attention in Modesto. Despite rumors to the contrary, he’s still alive and in state prison.
A lawsuit filed recently by a local government watchdog demands that Modesto Irrigation District stop using residential electricity revenues to subsidize farm-water rates, but it really calls attention to board members’ ability to cast votes that benefit them directly and financially.
Greg Lawson, public informationi officer for CalTrans, talks about the sinkhole that shut down northbound Interstate 5 just south of Tracy, Calif., on Tuesday, May 31, 2016. (Andy Alfarofirstname.lastname@example.org)
Sinkhole south of Tracy shuts down Interstate 5 north
Suspect in 2003 Lacy Ferguson homicide in Stanislaus County court