GULF OF ADEN (Feb. 13, 2020) Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class Chester Gaza, from Concord, California, strikes eight bells signifying noon aboard the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy (CG 60). Normandy is part of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group and is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central Region, connecting the Mediterranean and Pacific through the western Indian Ocean and three strategic choke points.Read More
By CHP – Contra Costa
Monday evening, Feb. 17, 2020 at about 5:59 pm, a CHP unit observed a vehicle driving recklessly at over 100 MPH, in and out of traffic, on Hwy-4 westbound at Laurel Road. The CHP unit initiated a traffic enforcement stop but the vehicle (a 2019 silver Kia Rio) failed to yield to lights and sirens and accelerated away from the patrol officer.
The suspect vehicle led CHP on a pursuit on Hwy-4 westbound to approximately San Marco Blvd. where CHP discontinued the pursuit due to safety concerns for the other drivers on the road and CHP Officers involved due to the reckless manner of driving from the suspect. CHP lost sight of the Kia but as the CHP unit exited Hwy-4 at Willow Pass Road in Concord, the Officer saw that the Kia had crashed into an embankment just off of the off-ramp of Willow Pass Road and had caught fire. A CHP Officer immediately exited his patrol car and put out the blaze with an extinguisher and discovered the Kia was abandoned. Witnesses related to CHP that multiple parties exited the Kia after it crashed and fled the scene.
CHP towed the Kia and set up a perimeter to locate the suspects in and around the Willow Pass Road and Evora Road area. Shortly after the area was surrounded, all four occupants from the Kia were located and detained. All four occupants were male juveniles, including the driver. Thankfully there were no reported crashes or injuries to Officers, other drivers on the road, and only minor complaints of pain to the occupants of the Kia.
The male juvenile driver was arrested and will be booked into the Contra Costa County Juvenile detention center and the other occupants will remain in CHP custody until a parent or legal guardian arranges pickup for each juvenile.
Reckless driving over 100 mph on the highway that endangers all drivers’ safety will not be tolerated. These extremely poor choices from unsafe drivers are the exact drivers we are continually attempting to get off the road at all times. We are thankful nobody was seriously injured or killed due to this reckless driver and we hope that these young juveniles get some guidance, realize the error of their ways, and begin a path to better choices for their future when behind the wheel.Read More
By Allen Payton
Making a third run for Congress to unseat incumbent Jerry McNerney, retired U.S. Marshal Antonio “Tony” Amador is doing so because he wants to get things done. He ran unsuccessfully in 2014 when he got to within 5 percent of McNerney’s vote total, the best of any Republican challenger since David Harmer in 2010, and again in 2016.
But he faces opposition in the primary in the likes of Brentwood resident and Army combat veteran William Martinek. (See related article)
The 75-year-old Amador explained why he jumped in the race after there was another Republican running.
“Martinek really didn’t have much to say, when he came to the San Joaquin County Central Committee meeting asking for an endorsement,” he shared. “He said he didn’t have any money or know the issues. They didn’t endorse him.”
“I spoke to my wife that night and the next morning after sleeping on it, and she told me I needed to get back in ‘because we need a real candidate,’” Amador stated.
“I always file later, to see who else files and what strengths they bring,” he said. “I called immediately to Matt Shupe about talking to the Contra Costa Republican Central Committee. But he wouldn’t take my calls. I knew he was Martinek’s campaign consultant and the county party chairman. He has a conflict of interest. They didn’t allow me to go over there before they made their endorsement.”
“In fact, they endorsed Martinek even before the filing closed,” Amador stated. “Even if you aren’t going to endorse me, you need to have the appearance of fairness.”
“I’m not attacking him (Martinek) personally because I’m going to need his help,” he added. “In fact, Matt’s doing a good job raising money in Contra Costa.”
Amador ended up getting the San Joaquin County Republican Party endorsement, as well as the endorsement of the California Republican Assembly.
Shupe responded, explaining the process in Contra Costa County.
“William was recruited by Central Committee members in Brentwood and Antioch and brought him to our meeting,” he said. “I had never met him, before and then I allowed William to speak. The following meeting, before the end of the filing period, we endorsed him because no other candidate had expressed an interest. We do that to give candidates all the tools they need to win.”
“I did not call, text with or advocate to any central committee members on anything about William,” Shupe stated. “When the endorsement came up at the meeting, I fully disclosed he was a client of mine and I recused myself, turned over the meeting to our vice chair and left the room.”
“Tony never reached out to us requesting an endorsement nor has he made a request to speak since he’s been declared,” he continued. “I received an email on Dec. 5, 2019 that he was upset that we endorsed in the race before the end of the filing period.”
“He waits until the last minute and doesn’t end up running a serious race,” Shupe said. “And people are tired of it.”
Amador’s professional background has been in law enforcement as well as a lifetime of public service. In addition to his seven years as a U.S. Marshal, he served as the Director for the California Youth Authority and worked for 13 years as a Los Angeles Police Officer. Amador was appointed to serve as Deputy Director of the California Employment Development Department,a member of the U.S. Merit Systems Protection, California Public Employee Retirement, and California Narcotic Addict Evaluation Boards, and the San Joaquin County Juvenile Justice and Deliquency Prevention Commission.
About the incumbent he’s hoping to face after the primary, Amador said, “McNerney won’t debate me on the issues. In 14 years, he’s been here and turned over a spade of dirt and said he’s supporting the veterans.”
Amador opposes the Delta tunnels that will take fresh water and move it around the Delta south to Los Angeles.
“But we need storage,” he said. “We need sufficient water to prevent the saltwater. McNerney has done nothing to offer a solution to our water challenges. I don’t know of any legislation from him to provide new storage facilities.”
“He has no political power. His emphasis has been on solar and wind energy, which has proven to not pay for itself.”
Amador supports the efforts of Antioch and the Northern Waterfront Initiative in Contra Costa County for a shipping port to access the deep water Stockton channel in the river, for local employment.”
Transportation is another major issue for his campaign.
“We need the road to the Byron Airport and Tracy, Route 239 and McNerney’s done nothing to make that happen,” Amador pointed out. “He sides with the environmentalists who oppose it.”
“That airport has so much potential for job creation. We have routes going to L.A. out of Stockton. The same could happen there,” he added.
“You get me into office, I’m going to make noise about this,” said Amador. “I went out to the airport and visited.”
“We need to look further into federal transportation matching funds for East County, to create jobs and a better environment for people in the area,” Amador stated. “It will benefit the agriculture industry in East County, too.”
“Why we can’t we create good jobs in the county, where people live?” he asked.
“Another issue that needs to be discussed and addressed is the homeless,” Amador said. “We can’t expect the cities to handle the problem. First, we need to help the veterans who are homeless.”
“He’s definitely for sanctuary cities and I’m opposed to them, especially with my law enforcement background,” he stated. “McNerney hasn’t done anything to address human trafficking or sex trafficking that is affecting our area.”
“But I do want to be want to resolve the DACA issue and give them legal status, and later the opportunity to become citizens,” Amador said. “As long as they haven’t committed any crimes and have lived a good life, while here. But we can’t have open borders like McNerney wants.”
“McNerney votes along the same lines as Nancy Pelosi,” he added. “There isn’t anything independent that he’s done in 14 years.”
Amador has been married to Evelia for 54 years, they have four daughters, 15 grandchildren and three great grandchildren. They live in Lodi.
To learn more about Amador’s campaign visit www.amadorforcongress.net.Read More
Early this morning, Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020, at approximately 1:16 am, CHP Contra Costa responded to a call of a vehicle versus a pedestrian on the Loveridge Road off-ramp from Hwy-4 eastbound in Pittsburg. Upon CHP & emergency personnel arrival, a 33-year-old male (unknown city of residence but possibly a transient or homeless individual) was located within the roadway and the responsible vehicle that collided with the pedestrian remained on scene.
Unfortunately, the male pedestrian was pronounced deceased on scene. The solo male driver of the 2013 Honda (36yrs old from Livermore) remained on scene and was cooperative throughout the investigation. The Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office will be handling the release of identity of the deceased male pedestrian.
Our initial investigation of this incident revealed that the pedestrian was within the roadway of the Loveridge road off-ramp in the #2 lane while the Honda was exiting from Hwy-4. The driver of the Honda was unable to avoid the pedestrian in the roadway and collided with him, causing fatal injuries. The driver of the Honda was not injured and remained on scene. The driver of the Honda was not DUI or impaired. Impairment of the pedestrian due to alcohol or drugs is unknown, at this time.
This incident is still under investigation. If anyone has information regarding this collision, the events leading up to it, or witnessed it, please call CHP in Martinez at 925-646-4980. Thank you.Read More
By Brentwood Police Department
Friday, Feb. 14, 2020 – It started as a traffic stop. That changed when officers discovered three people in a car in possession of methamphetamine, stolen mail, burglary tools, an imitation firearm and counterfeit currency. On top of all that, it was discovered that the car they were in was stolen. Arrested were 29-year-old Carlos Canales Jr. and 25-year-old Savannah Vetterli of Oakley along with 27-year-old Jesus Olivarez II of Stockton.
All three were given a ride to county jail…and the owner of the car will be getting their car back!Read More
It’s with great sadness tonight, Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020 that we have to report the loss of a 23-year-old Brentwood man who died at the scene of this collision. At 5:09 PM, officers responded to this crash and discovered a man inside the car unresponsive and trapped. Fire Personnel arrived and were able to extract him from the car but pronounced him deceased.
Fortunately, there were no other occupants in the car. What caused this collision is still being investigated by our Traffic Safety Division so please refrain from passing judgment. We do not suspect alcohol was involved and there were no other reports of any other vehicles associated with this collision.
Out of respect to the family, we are not releasing the decedent’s name at this time.
If anyone witnessed this accident, or has information to share about moments prior to it, please contact our Traffic Safety Division at 925-634-6911.Read More
By Pittsburg Police Department
Last night, Friday, Feb. 14, 2020, we received multiple 911 calls of several shots fired near Crestview Drive and Alta Vista Circle. Officers arrived to find a 21-year-old man with multiple gunshot wounds. Despite lifesaving efforts by EMS, he did not survive.
We are in the early stages of the investigation and the information is limited.
At this point, it appears the victim was in a park adjacent to Alta Vista Circle when an unidentified suspect approached the victim and fired several shots. The suspect then ran and got into a compact car and drove away.
Our investigators could use the public’s help with any information or security camera video from the area. Anyone with information should please contact our Pittsburg Police Tip-Line at (925) 252-4040Read More
By Concord Police Department
If you were thinking about buying perfume for your special someone this Valentine’s Day, make sure you get to the store before this man and woman! View the surveillance video.
On January 23rd, just before noon the couple shown in this video entered a local beauty store and made a beeline to the fragrance section. There, they selected thirty-three bottles of a variety of perfumes and placed them into a bag. With haste, they left the store failing to pay for the almost $3,500 worth of merchandise!
Although we made light of the case at the beginning of the post, we take these crimes very seriously. We would love to get the suspects identified and make them answer for their crime. So, if you recognize either of them please contact the Concord Police Department’s Financial Crimes Unit at PDInvestigations@cityofconcord.org or you can call our anonymous tip line at (925) 603-5836.Read More
Domestic violence related; suspect arrested
By Jimmy Lee, Director of Public Affairs, Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff
On Tuesday, February 11, 2020, at about 3:24 PM, the California Highway Patrol received a call of a rollover vehicle accident in the area of Kirker Pass Road and Hess Road near Concord.
During the initial CHP investigation, it was discovered that the cause of the accident was apparently domestic-related. The Office of the Sheriff responded to the location and started an investigation.
Deputy Sheriffs found the incident involved a woman and a man who were in a previous relationship. The woman was driving a tan colored 2004 Chevy Tahoe SUV with two passengers. The suspect, who was in a white colored 2015 Mercedes Benz, followed behind and later pulled in front of the victim’s car causing her to lose control and flip over an embankment.
The driver of the Chevy Tahoe, who was ejected from the vehicle according to ConFire personnel, was taken to a local hospital and is said to be in critical condition. According to the CHP many vehicles pulled over and passersby turned the vehicle onto its side. One of the other occupants, a young girl, was treated and released from the hospital. The last occupant of the SUV was uninjured.
The driver of the other vehicle was later arrested by Deputy Sheriffs. He is identified as 28-year-old Alejandro Arriaga of Concord. He was later booked into the Martinez Detention Facility on three felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon and one felony count of child cruelty. Arriaga is being held in lieu of $190,000 bail.
Anyone with any information on this case or who might have witnessed it is asked to contact detectives at (925) 313-2600. Tips could be emailed to: email@example.com or call (866) 846-3592 to leave an anonymous voice message.
Allen Payton contributed to this report.Read More