Redlands Unified slapped with sex abuse lawsuit under new state law

Three victims of a former middle school teacher serving a 74-year prison term for sexual abuse sued him and the Redlands Unified School District on Tuesday under a new state law that extends the statute of limitations for certain sex crimes. The victims, all former Clement Middle School students ranging in age from 11 to 14 when they were sexually abused by former English teacher Sean Ramiro Lopez, allege the school district was aware of Lopez’s conduct, and even investigated him, but did not remove him from the classroom nor report suspicions to police. Another of Lopez’s victims, whose family is not party to the suit, allegedly died in 2012 due to the “horrific abuse” he suffered, according to the lawsuit. Morgan Stewart, the Irvine attorney representing the three victims, did not disclose the cause of death for that victim. The abuse occurred from 1999 to 2001 and resulted in longstanding emotional trauma for the victims, including depression, anger and sleeplessness, and severe control and trust issues, according to the lawsuit filed in San Bernardino Superior Court. Redlands Unified Superintendent Mauricio V. Arellano did not…

Riverside to allow one or two homeless people to live in 64-square-foot shelters

Up to two people per shelter will soon be allowed to live in 64-square-foot emergency shelters in Riverside, as officials reversed their earlier stance that the units were too small to be legal. The shed-like structures, which include heating but not plumbing, are intended to house some of the city’s homeless people. The city has counted 439 people living without shelter, and across Riverside County, at least 95 homeless people died in 2019, including 22 from the city of Riverside. “I think we can all agree that 64 square feet with electricity, heat and access to a bathroom, is better than living in a storm drain,” Mayor Rusty Bailey said during the Tuesday, Jan. 21, meeting. City staff members had previously said state law required any building to be at least 70 square feet, and 120 square feet if it housed two people. Bailey spoke to state officials — including Gov. Gavin Newsom, who said the bureaucratic hang-up was ridiculous — and was advised that the city could change the requirement on its own. The City Council did so with a unanimous vote Tuesday. City…

3 latest horse deaths at Santa Anita stir renewed concerns over safety

The death of three horses in three days at Santa Anita racetrack has reignited calls to suspend racing at the historic Arcadia venue. On Tuesday, Kathy Guillermo, senior vice president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said that while Santa Anita appears to be taking reform efforts seriously, the California Horse Racing Board should halt racing until safety measures recommended by the CHRB and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office are in place. “Horses’ lives are at risk,” Guillermo said. “We wouldn’t suggest that an airplane should be allowed to take off if half the seat belts hadn’t been installed yet. Why should horses be raced if every precaution hasn’t been taken?” Officials at The Stronach Group, which owns the storied track, say they remain committed to building the “safest possible racing and track conditions in the industry.” If the deaths were caused by something within the company’s control, it will take additional corrective steps, Stronach said in a statement. No action expected from racing board The California Horse Racing Board is investigating the deaths. The regulatory board was given the power…

Safety Corridor Sees First Fatal Collision in Years as Project Gears Up

Even on an already notorious section of road, the Indianola Cutoff on U.S. Highway 101 stands out as a dangerous crossing point, with a collision rate 200 percent higher the state averages. Anyone who has lived in Humboldt County long enough likely knows the story of the safety corridor, with the short version being that a succession of horrific accidents led to the special designation in 2002. In the five years prior, there had been 85 accidents along the 5-mile stretch between Eureka and Arcata, including five fatal crashes, with the vast majority — 83 percent — occurring at one of roadway’s intersection, according to a Caltrans report. Interim measures to reduce the collision rate were implemented — including a headlights-on requirement and lowering the speed limit from 60 mph to the current 50 mph. Still, accidents continue to occur on the short span, the most heavily traveled of any highway in Caltrans District 1, which includes the counties of Del Norte, Lake and Mendocino. On Jan. 14, William Clymer was killed while attempting to turn onto the Indianola Cutoff from the southbound lanes of…

HomeVestors Franchise Co-Owner Accused of Trying to Buy Camarillo Homes Under False Pretenses

A Santa Clarita man who co-owns a “We Buy Ugly Houses” franchise is facing felony charges after an investigation found he lied to homeowners to push them to sell their homes, the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office said Tuesday. Cory Evans, 41, was charged with two felony counts each of attempted grand theft by false pretenses and attempted financial elder abuse, the DA’s office said. The franchise, HomeVestors, is advertised as a company that offers to quickly pay cash to buy homes in as is condition and for “typical closing costs.” Evans is accused of providing false information to two Camarillo homeowners in their 70s “to induce them to sign contracts for HomeVestors to purchase their homes,” the DA’s office said. Both homeowners later tried to cancel their contracts and the company threatened civil litigation, authorities said. Senior Deputy District Attorney Tony Wold advised community members to avoid signing contracts without properly vetting them. “Particularly with the elderly, never sign any contract ‘on the spot,’” Wold said. “Always vet important matters with friends and family. Take your time and don’t allow yourself to be rushed…

Surveillance Video Shows Armed Robbery at Highland T-Mobile Store; 3 Suspects at Large

Authorities released surveillance video Tuesday of an armed robbery that took place at a T-Mobile store in Highland, where four burglars made off with cash and eight cell phones. The robbery took place in a plaza on Sterling Avenue at around 3:20 p.m. Dec. 16, according to a news release from the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department. Deputies took one of the suspects, 29-year-old Peter Lopez, into custody and are still searching for three other suspects. Video shows a woman standing outside the store and talking on the phone before entering. As she begins speaking to the T-Mobile worker, a man wearing sunglasses and a gray hooded sweatshirt can be seen entering the store, taking out a silver handgun and pointing it at the worker. The worker then puts his hands up as the man jump over the counter and towards him. The woman who was in the store calmly walks out into the parking lot towards a silver car. A second man in a black hooded sweatshirt and sunglasses then enters the store and goes behind a partition before going towards the counter and appearing…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!