Food truck owner sentenced to five years in prison for arson, insurance fraud

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — The man convicted of arson and insurance fraud after setting his one food truck on fire, Avonte Hartsfield, will spend the next five years and four months in state prison, a judge decided Wednesday. “The defendant shall be committed to the California and Rehabilitation for the total term of five years, four months with credits,” said Kimberlee Lagotta, San Diego County Superior Court Judge. Hartsfield, 27, appeared in court in custody and represented himself. Lagotta said the sentence is the “maximum statutorily eligible sentence.” Lagotta and San Diego County Deputy District Attorney Judy Taschner said Hartsfield’s lack of responsibility and remorse played into the sentencing. “He is still blaming others. To this day, zero taking of responsibility or any remorse for what happened in the amount of money he took,” Taschner said. Harstfield maintains his innocence. Multiple arrests made in fentanyl crackdown: SDPD “I do understand that the prosecution and the court and prosecution would like to see an acceptance of responsibility. However, still I am denying the fact I was there…overwhelming evidence would’ve proved that,” Hartsfield said. “Throughout the

Bicyclist found dead along roadway in North County identified

ENCINITAS, Calif. (FOX 5/ KUSI) — Authorities on Wednesday released the identity of a bicyclist found dead over the weekend along a roadway in Encinitas. Ryan Currie, 48, was identified as the deceased, Sgt. Jeremy Collis with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department said in a news release. Around midnight on Sunday, law enforcement responded to a bicyclist down in the 2700 block of S. Coast Highway 101, according to authorities. When deputies arrived at the location, they found Currie in the northbound bike lane of S. Coast Highway 101. Student airlifted to hospital after fight at Lincoln Middle School First responders pronounced the man dead at the scene. The cause of the accident has not been determined, but the investigation did reveal that Currie was riding northbound along the east side of S. Coast Highway in the protected bicycle lane on an Electra Townie bicycle. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the North Coastal Sheriff’s Station Traffic Division at 760-966-3500.

Water main break causes road closures in Morena

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — A water main break on Wednesday prompted road closures in the Morena neighborhood, authorities said. Around 6:35 p.m., SkyFOX was over the 1200 block of Morena Blvd. near Bird Rock Coffee Roasters, where a portion of a street and parking lot were flooded. San Diego police received a call of water coming up from the street and the road buckling. When FOX 5/KUSI arrived on scene, a deep crack was found in the middle of the road. Crews at the scene of a water main break in the Morena neighborhood on March 20, 2024. Crews at the location were seen scanning the damage to the roads. Check back for updates on this developing story.

California voters pass proposition requiring counties to spend on programs to tackle homelessness

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California voters have passed a measure that will impose strict requirements on counties to spend on housing and drug treatment programs to tackle the state’s homelessness crisis. Proposition 1 marks the first update to the state’s mental health system in 20 years and a win for Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, who spent significant time and money campaigning on the measure’s behalf, raising more than $13 million to promote it with the support of law enforcement, first responders, hospitals and mayors of major cities. Opponents raised just $1,000. Newsom celebrated after the proposition passed narrowly two weeks after election day. “This is the biggest change in decades in how California tackles homelessness, and a victory for doing things radically different,” he said in a statement. “Now, counties and local officials must match the ambition of California voters. This historic reform will only succeed if we all kick into action immediately – state government and local leaders, together.” The measure gives the state greater control over a voter-approved tax enacted in 2004 on millionaires for mental health services that gave counties wide latitude in

These San Diego neighborhoods had the most crimes in 2023, data shows

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — Crime numbers across the country fell last year compared to 2022, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the most recent data publicly released by San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) in October’s mid-year crime report also showed a downward trend in crime locally. However, nearly 40,000 property crimes and about 13,500 crimes against people were reported to the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) from January to December of last year. According to the latest crime data from SDPD, there was a total of 13,462 “crimes against persons” in 2023. Half of San Diego’s homicides so far this year happened in a 30-hour span last weekend “Crimes against persons” include murder, negligent manslaughter, justifiable homicide, rape, sodomy, sexual assault with objects, fondling, aggravated assault, simple assault, intimidation, kidnapping/abduction, incest, statutory rape, human trafficking-commercial sex acts, and human trafficking involuntary servitude. The top five neighborhoods where “crimes against persons” were reported the most last year were: East Village (850) Pacific Beach (459) Core-Columbia (419) Hillcrest (376) Gaslamp (369) In addition, 37,676 crimes against property were reported in San Diego last

Suspect arrested after hours-long SWAT standoff in Valencia park

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — An armed suspect who barricaded themselves inside a home in San Diego’s Valencia Park neighborhood on Wednesday was arrested by SWAT following an hours-long standoff with San Diego police. SDPD officers were first called to the home by a resident of the home located in the 5100 block of Coban Street around 10:45 a.m. Upon arrival, officers saw a woman run out of the home with minor injuries due to an apparent domestic violence incident. A family member told FOX 5 at the scene that the woman’s boyfriend, who was identified as an adult in his 30s, had threatened to kill her, prompting the call to law enforcement. SWAT was requested around noon due to threats from the suspect to shoot officers and “anybody else in the surrounding area,” Lt. Dan Meyer said. Nearby residents were evacuated from their homes shortly after SWAT arrived. “He is an active threat and we are handling it appropriately,” Meyer said prior to his arrest. In the hours since the standoff began, dozens of officers, multiple police vehicles, a K9 unit and overhead surveillance

SWAT team called to barricaded suspect in Valencia Park home

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — A SWAT team has been called to a home in San Diego’s Valencia Park neighborhood where police have been attempting to contact a suspect for several hours. San Diego police officers have been at the home located in the 5100 block of Coban Street since around 10:45 a.m. According to SDPD, SWAT was called to the scene around noon. By 1 p.m., around 30 officers and multiple police vehicles were in the area. Neighbors on either side of the home appeared to have been escorted out of their homes, although no other evacuations were issued in the area. It is unclear if any road closures were put in place around the standoff. Other residents of the neighborhood FOX 5 spoke with said they know the residents of the home and had seen several people leave the home within the last hour. No additional details about the suspect or what preceded the apparent standoff were immediately available. This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

BASE jumpers leap from high-rise apartment building in East Village

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — “I heard a crashing noise while watching TV on the couch. So when I heard the second one, I went out on the balcony and I was surprised to see a parachute below,” an East Village resident told FOX 5. Known on Instagram as @blakcoutcity, the local man witnessed BASE jumpers soaring through the San Diego sky around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday night. He reported that two jumpers leapt from the south side of his high-rise apartment building. Stunning photo: ‘Salkhenge’ sunset aligns on spring equinox The local said he resides on the 40th floor of Spire San Diego, which is located on the 1400 block of Island Avenue. According to the building’s website, there are a total of 45 floors, making his view up and close. After hearing the noise, most likely the parachutes opening, he sprung into action and started recording. He was able to fully capture the second jumper in motion, eventually making a safe and smooth landing on the street below. 10 themed bars to check out in San Diego County What is BASE jumping? BASE jumping

Bodies found in Tijuana River channel identified: SDPD

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — The bodies of two men found in the Tijuana River channel back in February have been identified, according to a release Wednesday by the San Diego Police Department (SDPD). Around 5:33 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 21, SDPD officers received a call from U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officials regarding a possible body floating in the water of the Tijuana River channel near the 3000 block of Dairy Mart Road in San Ysidro. Two bodies found in the Tijuana River channel Officers responded that evening but due to poor lighting conditions, heavy water flow, and other factors, they were unable to find a body, according to an earlier SDPD release. When they returned the following morning around 6:50 a.m., they were able to locate two male bodies near a large pile of debris in the river channel, officers said. With help from CBP and the San Diego Fire Department River Rescue Team, officers were able to recover both bodies from the river. Multiple arrests made in fentanyl crackdown: SDPD After an examination, the San Diego Medical Examiner’s office discovered one

Multiple arrests made in fentanyl crackdown: SDPD

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — About two dozen arrests were made in connection to fentanyl-associated crime within San Diego County earlier this month, the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) announced in a release Wednesday. More than 60 officers and investigators teamed up in a 10-hour operation on March 1 to identify and arrest fentanyl dealers based in the county. Three face charges in statewide high-end retail theft ring As a result, there were nine felony arrests, eight misdemeanor arrests/citations and 15 fentanyl outreach contacts, according to the release. The operation was a collaboration between SDPD’s Narcotics Unit and the Fentanyl Abatement and Suppression Team (FAST), which is led by Homeland Security Investigations. Anyone with more information regarding illegal fentanyl sales is asked to call SDPD or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

Stunning photo: ‘Salkhenge’ sunset aligns on spring equinox

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — It’s a phenomenon that only occurs twice a year, on the spring and fall equinoxes. Known as the “Salkhenge” sunset, it happens when the setting sun perfectly aligns with the Salk Institute’s “River of Life” water feature, which runs through the center of the travertine courtyard. According to Jonas Salk, the founder of the institute, the river “represents the trickle of knowledge produced by this facility, spilling out into the body of knowledge, symbolized by the ocean.” He explained further, saying it creates a sense of “connection to a higher purpose.” SpaceX launch seen in San Diego area On Tuesday, March 19, 2024 — the first day of spring — the “Salkhenge” was captured once again, offering a stunning display of a fiery sunset centered with the flowing river. “Salkhenge” sunset on March 19, 2024. (Credit: Salk Institute) The event can be compared to the famous “Scrippshenge” sunset, which occurs when the setting sun dips toward the horizon, perfectly aligning between the support beams of the Scripps Pier in La Jolla. Founded in 1960, the Salk Institute is an independent, nonprofit

What led to a Komodo dragon attack at the Akron Zoo?

AKRON, Ohio (WJW) – The Akron Zoo is investigating what led to a Komodo dragon attack at its facility. The incident happened on March 3 in the “Komodo Kingdom employee service area,” according to a press release. A staff member received multiple bite wounds from a Komodo dragon named Padar, the Ohio zoo said. Two large sharks reported minutes from one another The zoo’s other Komodo dragon, Jasper, the smaller of the two lizards, was also hurt and is recovering, the zoo said, adding that Jasper was not involved in the staff member’s injuries. “Safety is, and will remain, the utmost priority for our staff, visitors and animals,” the zoo press release states. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration, which is working with the zoo to review the incident, said the two male Komodo dragons “unintentionally entered the same cage and attacked each other.” OSHA said the employee tried to intervene and was hurt by the larger lizard. The employee was quickly given first aid. “Our chief concern is for our valued team member, who is currently recovering at home. We will update as more information

No explosives found at Seoul stadium in police search following bomb threat against Ohtani

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korean police said they’ve found no explosives at Seoul’s Gocheok Sky Dome after searching the site Wednesday following a reported bomb threat against Los Angeles Dodgers star Shohei Ohtani. About 150 police officers used sniffer dogs, X-ray detectors and other equipment to search through the stadium, but no suspicious objects were discovered, according to Seoul’s Guro police station. Police officers said they acted on a tip that there was a threat targeting the Japanese star but didn’t elaborate. “It’s unfortunate that the threat of a bomb even being a possibility, but I have complete confidence in Major League Baseball and the security here that we feel safe,” Padres manager Mike Shildt said before the game. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said he didn’t receive any specific information about the threat and was told to ”just keep working on the baseball game.” South Korea’s Yonhap news agency said the search happened after South Korea’s consulate general in Vancouver, Canada received an email threatening to detonate an explosive at the Gocheok stadium during the Major League Baseball opening game between the Dodgers