A woman whose body was found on Highway 242 on Sunday morning, July 24, was identified after someone saw the media reports on this Jane Doe case. She is identified as 62-year old Marie Chellino of Concord.
Following is the original report:
On Sunday, July 24, 2016, at about 2:09 AM, the California Highway Patrol responded to a report of a person on the roadway on southbound Highway 242 near Olivera Road. The person was pronounced deceased at the scene.
The Coroner’s Division, which took custody of the body, has not been able to identify the person, who did not have any identification.
She is described as:
Adult female, 50-60 years old, dark hair with some greying, 5’,5”, about 143 pounds. She was wearing a gray/blue buttoned down pinstripe shirt.
She did have a knitted red/grey pouch necklace that contained what appears to be a clear crystal. Please see the attached photograph.
Anyone with any information on the identity of the person is asked to contact the Coroner’s Division at (925) 313-2850.Read More
Half-cent sales tax in addition to Measure J
The Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) believes that the future success of Contra Costa County includes offering safe, reliable mobility for all. To provide funding for this goal, on Wednesday, July 20th, the Contra Costa Transportation Authority board – which includes representatives from all parts of the County – voted unanimously to put a tax measure on the November 8 ballot. If approved by voters, the ballot measure will fund transportation improvements throughout Contra Costa County, for the next 30 years. The details are outlined in CCTA’s Transportation Expenditure Plan.
The measure, which will appear on the November 8 ballot, will ask Contra Costa voters to approve a new half-cent sales tax that will generate $2.9 billion in revenues over 30 years to continue to improve the transportation system in Contra Costa. The tax will be in addition to the current half-cent sales tax for transportation in the county.
The proposed Transportation Expenditure Plan (TEP) is the culmination of months of extensive public outreach, stakeholder engagement, and advocate input. The TEP has also been approved by all of Contra Costa’s 19 cities and towns, as well as the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors. The plan focuses on innovative strategies and new technologies to promote a strong economy, protect the environment, and enhance the quality of life for all of Contra Costa’s diverse communities.
“The CCTA Board is incredibly proud of the TEP,” said Authority Board Special Meeting Chair Don Tatzin. “This is a transportation plan that reflects the values of our diverse region, has garnered broad support across the county, and will guide the next 30 years of transportation planning. If a super majority of voters approve the tax measure in November, the tax revenue will provide necessary funding for the transportation improvements included in the TEP.”
Contra Costa residents have made significant contributions to their transportation infrastructure since 1988, when voters passed Measure C, a half-cent sales tax dedicated to maintaining the ability of residents to travel safely and conveniently throughout the county. Measure C helped fund the BART extension to Pittsburg/Bay Point, built the Richmond Parkway, improved bicycle and pedestrian trails in the county, and invested more than $30 million in senior and disabled transit services.
In 2004, voters passed Measure J, which renewed the half-cent sales tax through 2034. Measure J has helped deliver the Fourth Bore of the Caldecott Tunnel, generated $1.3 billion dollars of investments to Highway 4 in Eastern Contra Costa County, including a BART extension to Antioch, and combined with Measure C has provided $286 million to Contra Costa’s cities and towns to maintain and repair local streets.
The TEP includes plans to reduce congestion and smooth traffic; improve BART, bus, ferry, and train service; and fix local streets and roads. It also dedicates unprecedented funding to new technologies and bicycle and pedestrian improvements in every part of the county, to give commuters viable alternatives to driving and in the process help get them out of traffic.
The TEP builds on CCTA’s strong record of fiscal responsibility and includes strong taxpayer protections and accountability. A public oversight committee will provide independent review of all funds raised and spent. It will ensure that funds are spent only in accordance with the voter-approved plan and only to benefit Contra Costa County.
“As we move into the future, Contra Costa’s economic strength is going to depend on people being able to travel quickly and conveniently throughout the county – to jobs, shopping and entertainment destinations, and everywhere else they need to go. This plan – and the measure that will fund the improvements it describes – helps make sure that is a reality in years to come,” said Tatzin.
To find out more information about the transportation improvements planned for the next 30 years – including projects in each of Contra Costa’s 19 cities and towns – and the tax measure, which will fund those plans if approved by voters on November 8, 2016, visit KeepContraCostaMoving.net.
About The Contra Costa Transportation Authority
The Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) is a public agency formed by Contra Costa voters in 1988 to manage the county’s transportation sales tax program and oversee countywide transportation planning efforts. CCTA is responsible for planning, funding and delivering critical transportation infrastructure projects and programs that connect our communities, foster a strong economy, increase sustainability, and safely and efficiently get people where they need to go. CCTA also serves as the county’s designated Congestion Management Agency, responsible for putting programs in place to keep traffic levels manageable. More information about CCTA is available at ccta.net.Read More
On Friday, July 15, 2016, at about 9:10 PM, Deputy Sheriffs responded to the 5000 block of Alhambra Valley Road regarding a residence that was burglarized. The next day at about 1 PM, Deputies went to the same location for a second burglary report. That same evening at about 8 PM, a truck parked in the driveway of the home was stolen.
Items taken in the burglaries include a number of bronze statues, including:
Marc Anthony, 8 feet tall
Cleopatra, 8-1/2 feet tall
Also stolen were two bronze tigers statues, three bronze drinking pitchers, whiskey decanters, an MK tile saw and a mink-like coat.
The truck that was stolen is a white 1995 Dodge 3500, extended cab with California license plate—5Y33805.
Anyone with any information on these burglaries or the whereabouts of the stolen items is asked to contact the Investigation Division at (925) 313-2661. For any tips, please email: email@example.com or call 866-846-3592 to leave an anonymous voice message.Read More
The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors paid tribute on Tuesday, July 19, to the professionals who serve the County as Probation, Pretrial and Parole Supervision Officers, recognizing their often unsung achievements in contributing to public safety, community engagement, and support for victims.
Most public safety professionals don’t enter the profession for the recognition, appreciation or financial rewards.
“There is one particular branch of the profession, though, whose role is keeping communities safe, and yet their crews are far too often overlooked,” noted Supervisor Candace Andersen, Chair of the Board of Supervisors. “Those are the dedicated workers in the community supervision profession, who are the linchpin of the Criminal Justice System. They often don’t wear recognizable uniforms or drive marked cars with lights and sirens, yet they play an equally vital role in ensuring everyone’s safety.”
In Contra Costa County, the Probation Department supervises adults placed on Probation as well as individuals being released from prison and being placed on Post Release Community Supervision (PRCS). In the juvenile justice system, the Probation Department operates the Juvenile Hall located in Martinez and Orin Allen Rehabilitation Facility located in Byron, supervises juveniles placed on probation, and provides a wide range of in home and support services aimed at keeping at-risk kids out of custody whenever possible.
The probation profession has changed dramatically in recent years, utilizing data and evidence-based practices to more creatively and effectively manage increased caseloads. The implementation of public safety realignment in California, which has resulted in a strong Community Corrections Partnership in Contra Costa County, has added additional responsibilities and opportunities for Probation Officers to make a difference with the individuals we supervise.
Interim Probation Chief Todd Billeci notes that Contra Costa County’s Probation, Pretrial and Parole team members are innovators in the field, providing service and support for offenders while also providing protection and assistance for victims.
“Too often, the impact of our staff on public safety might go unnoticed,” Billeci said. “We appreciate the Board of Supervisors taking time to recognize this week as ‘Probation, Pretrial and Parole Supervision Officer’s Week’ and acknowledging the vital role our officers play. Our success comes when we give juveniles and adults the education, job training and life skills they need to enable them to become more industrious citizens in our community.”
Contra Costa County’s Probation Department has been honored for its innovative approaches and high degree of success. Nationally, the week of July 17 – 23, 2016, serves as the official week to recognize the professional achievements of the probation, pretrial and parole supervisors.Read More
After a rigorous review of 117 applications, Supervisor Federal Glover announced the recipients of the $1.5 million in grants from the Keller Canyon Landfill Mitigation Fund. The Board of Supervisors approved the expenditures on Tuesday morning, July 19, 2016 at their meeting in Martinez.
Among the Keller grants this year was $100,000 for electronic surveillance of Highway 4 from Bay Point to Antioch where gang-related shootings have occurred the past year. It will be shared with the law enforcement agencies that line that roadway segment.
In all, the grants for the fiscal year 2016-2017 were awarded to 82 recipients providing a wide range of activities from a Christmas party for Bay Point’s children to a full-time resident deputy to crossing guards for Bay Point schools.
“The allocation set aside for to monitor Highway 4 – possibly including cameras and license plate readers – will be used by law enforcement to keep our residents safe,” says Glover.
The amount of available funding varies from year to year because the Keller fund is based on the tonnage delivered to the Keller Canyon Landfill located in the hills off of Bailey Road south of Pittsburg and Bay Point.
The county supervisors created the mitigation fund when voters in the early1990s approved the location of a landfill site in the hills south of Bay Point and Pittsburg. Since the landfill was located in District 5, the district 5 supervisor was given the responsibility of administering the fund. The fund helps alleviate some of the landfill’s impacts to the neighboring community.
In 2011, at the recommendation of the Auditor, Supervisor Glover reformed the distribution of the funds by limiting its use to the impacted area and instituting a fully transparent system for determining who is granted the awards and to ensure that the money is used for what it is intended.
The grants will be awarded August 18 after the recipients sign their contracts with the county. The programs or events that will benefit from the grants include:
- Bay Point holiday celebrations
- Field trips from Bay Point teenagers
- Antioch Rivertown Jamboree and Delta Thunder Boat Race
- A full-time deputy as a school resource officer in Bay Point schools.
- Bay Point Spring Derby Memorial Day Parade and Festival
- World Music and Arts Festival for Bay Point and Pittsburg elementary school students
- RotaCare Pittsburg Free Medical Clinic
- Ambrose Park Aquatic Center Project.
This year’s fund of $1,507,000 is based on the anticipated tonnage that will be delivered to the landfill for the fiscal year 2016-2017.
This is the second year in a row that the Keller fund has shown an increase, which might be an indication of an improving economy, said Glover.
“The grant awards are always difficult decisions because there are so many good services being provided by local agencies,” he added.Read More
The Ceasefire Lifelines to Healing Community invites you to come out and help us spread the message that we want everyone in our community to be alive and free. Join us for this Citywide Walk to continue to share our love across the City of Richmond.
Let’s make this our best year ever as we walk to express our message: “Alive & Free.”
The East Bay Performing Arts Center will be walking with us to bring sounds of joy and hope, as we walk through our communities that have experienced pain because of the gun violence and crime. Come join us in an expression of love.
Friday, July 22, 2016 at 7:00 pm
New Hope Missionary Baptist Church
321 Alamo Ave., Richmond
Friday July 29th New Hope Missionary Baptist 321 Alamo Ave., Richmond
For more information contact Rev. Donnell “Rickey” Jones: 510-331-3605 or firstname.lastname@example.orgRead More
Minimal impact on crime rate
By Allen Payton
In a letter to Pittsburg Police Chief Brian Addington, on Friday, July 15, 2016, Contra Costa District Attorney Mark Peterson informed him that of the 204 reports in 2015 listed by the Pittsburg Police Department as “suspicious circumstances” 103 should have been listed as crimes.
Following a request by Addington seeking an opinion by the District Attorney’s office, one deputy district attorney and one deputy sheriff performed an audit, reviewing each of the reports. They determined that 40 of those 103 reports should have been listed as Part I crimes and 63 as Part II crimes. Part I crimes include murder, non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson.
Peterson’s letter states “Although the police reports listed the applicable crime, apparently your department did not the 103 incidents as crimes to the FBI.”
The reclassification of those crimes, will increase the total Part I crimes the Pittsburg Police Department will have to report to the FBI for 2015, changing the statistics to better reflect the true crime rate in the city.
The letter, however also states, “It should be noted that during the 2015 calendar year, the Pittsburg Police Department wrote 9,975 reports. Thus, the 103 police reports we have discussed are only 1% of all the police reports written that year.”
The result is an increase of 0.5% in reportable Part I crimes and 1% in Part II crimes.
Peterson concluded that “had the 103 Suspicious Circumstances cases been correctly classified as crimes reported to the FBI, there would have been minimal impact on city’s crime rate.”
To read the entire letter and audit, click here: Pittsburg PD 2015 AuditRead More
On Thursday, July 7, 2016, Contra Costa County District Attorney Mark A. Peterson released a report requested by the Richmond City Council describing the investigation into the death of Richard Perez III who was shot and killed by a Richmond Police Officer on September 14th, 2014. The report also outlines the reasons why criminal charges were not filed against the officer.
For over 30 years Contra Costa County law enforcement agencies have utilized a county-wide protocol to investigate incidents when officers or civilians are shot or killed during law enforcement encounters, or when officers are accused of crimes. The formal process is entitled the “Law Enforcement Involved Fatal Incidents Protocol,” and informally known as the “Protocol” system.
The process was adopted by the county’s Police Chiefs’ Association and the District Attorney’s Office early in the 1980’s, and since then hundreds of “Protocol” cases have been investigated under this approach. The approach has proven to be a very effective means to conduct such sensitive probes and joins a team of District Attorney inspectors with investigators from the involved agency to jointly investigate all such incidents. Their work is overseen by a senior Deputy District Attorney.
Pursuant to the county-wide Protocol, the Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff/Coroner holds Inquests following virtually every death involving law enforcement officers. These Inquests are open to the public, and are conducted by a private attorney acting as the hearing officer for the Coroner’s Office. Such hearings are held in front of a jury of citizens randomly selected from the Superior Court jury pool.
The death of Mr. Perez was investigated pursuant to the county’s Protocol. The report is attached which describes the investigation, and the reasons charges were not filed against the officer.
Inquiries concerning the death of Mr. Perez, or the Protocol process can be directed to Deputy District Attorney Barry Grove who oversees the District Attorney’s Protocol team. He can be reached at (925) 957-2200.
Read the complete report, here: CCDA Report on Perez shootingRead More
State funds support arts education at Meadow Homes Elementary celebrating cultural diversity
The California Arts Council announced, on Wednesday, that it plans to award a grant to Meadow Homes Elementary in the Mt. Diablo Unified School District (MDUSD) as part of its Artists in Schools program.
The Artists in Schools program supports projects that integrate community arts resources—artists and professional art organizations—into comprehensive, standards-based arts learning projects for California’s students. This year, the California Arts Council’s Artist in Schools program will allow 144 arts organizations to hire 580 teaching artists that will serve a total of more than 43,000 students in 323 schools across California.
The $6715 grant was awarded jointly to Walnut Creek Civic Arts Education, along with MDUSD’s Meadow Homes Elementary and Tice Creek School in the Walnut Creek school district to offer high-quality, after-school arts learning communities for at least 50 students in grades 1-6. In series of workshops, students will receive standards-based arts instruction in two disciplines, one visual and one performance-based, draw connections between them, and hold a community-based culminating performance/exhibition.
“Civic Arts Education is excited about this opportunity to work with local schools whose goals so closely align with ours. Teaching artists from Civic Arts can’t wait to share visual and performing arts like anime and African drumming to help Meadow Homes students explore their creativity,” said Linda Johnson, Civic Arts Education Program Manager. “We’re grateful to the California Arts Council for making it happen!”
Dr. Nellie Meyer, Superintendent for MDUSD, praised the Artists in Schools grant as a valuable tool to contribute to student achievement and success in school and beyond.
“A strong arts education promotes the skills our students need to be successful, and is essential to promoting self-directed learning, and critical and creative thinking skills. We believe firmly that what students learn in arts education helps them to master other subjects, including mathematics, language arts, and science,” said Meyer. “We could not be more excited about the opportunities this grant will open up for Meadow Homes’ students and families.”
Meadow Homes Elementary serves approximately 900 students, representing 19 different ethnic groups. Principal Sandra Wilbanks applauded the Artist in Schools grant for providing the campus an unparalleled opportunity to expand their existing arts education program to further celebrate the school’s cultural diversity.
“When you tie arts education into all areas of the curriculum, you create a rich environment for student learning that truly celebrates and honors students’ cultural backgrounds and traditions,” said Wilbanks. “Having diverse arts experiences is empowering for students. By exercising creative expression in all subject areas, students can be proud of who they are and how they are developing as young learners and future leaders.”
Wilbanks says Meadow Homes’ existing arts initiatives and grants have had unexpected but happy consequences in promoting second language development among its English Learner population, which accounts for approximately 78% percent of its 900 students.
“What we’ve seen is that, through the arts, students have a stronger connection to school, especially for English Learners. This has, in turn, improved the home-to-school and school-to-home engagement with our families,” she added. “We are absolutely elated about the grant and very excited about being able to partner with the California Arts Council on something that will be so meaningful for our families.”
The news of Meadow Home’s grant was featured as part of a larger announcement from the California Arts Council, which can be viewed online at http://arts.ca.gov/news/pressreleases.php.
“California Arts Council grants provide vital support for projects in diverse communities across our state,” said Craig Watson, Director of the California Arts Council. “This was an historic year of state arts support. We are proud to invest more than $8.5 million in funding 712 grant projects that will stimulate local growth and prosperity, and meet the needs of our communities through deep engagement with culture and creative expression.”
The California Arts Council will continue to grow the reach of its programs in the coming year, as the result of a significant one-time state arts funding increase for 2016-17 announced last week.
Nestled at the base of Mt. Diablo in the suburban East San Francisco Bay Area, the Mt. Diablo Unified School District is one of the largest school districts in the state of California, with over 56 school sites and programs serving 150 square miles, including the cities of Concord, Pleasant Hill, Clayton; portions of Walnut Creek, Martinez and Pittsburg; and unincorporated areas including Lafayette, Pacheco and Bay Point. The district is among one of the more ethnically-diverse in California, with students and their families representing more than 50 languages and dialects. Learn more at www.mdusd.org.
For over 50 years the City of Walnut Creek’s Civic Arts Education program has been the regional center of arts learning — promoting new visions, supporting exploration, stimulating creative thought and encouraging self-expression. Last year more than 8,000 adults, youth and children enjoyed beginning through professional level classes and programs at the Shadelands, Civic Park and Heather Farm campuses. Learn more at by clicking here.
The mission of the California Arts Council, a state agency, is to advance California through the arts and creativity. The Council is committed to building public will and resources for the arts; fostering accessible arts initiatives that reflect contributions from all of California’s diverse populations; serving as a thought leader and champion for the arts; and providing effective and relevant programs and services. Learn more at www.arts.ca.gov.Read More