News and Notices for Ocean Beach and Point Loma – Cusp of Aquarius Jan. 2020

by on January 24, 2020 · 4 comments

in Ocean Beach

Life on the edge in Ocean Beach.

Dirty Birds to Donate 20% of Sales to Help Filipino Volcano Victims

Local restaurant Dirty Birds Bar and Grill is donating 20% of its sales to help Taal Volcano eruption victims in the Philippines. The OB site is one of four around town that participated in the donations during last Wednesday, Jan. 22. The OB one offers beer and wine, quality bar food and late-night pizza. City Councilmember Chris Cate and Dirty Birds owner Noli Zosa teamed up to hold fundraising efforts to raise money for evacuees who were affected by the recent volcano eruptions. Taal Volcano erupted on January 12 and is still in Alert Level 4, which means it could have a hazardous explosion within days. 10News

Mid-Length Surf Boards Are Going Mainstream

Today, alternative shapes seem to be having a moment. In California, a quick survey of any lineup from Ocean Beach, San Diego to Ocean Beach, San Francisco is likely to reveal as many multiplex bottom contours and fin setups as potato chip thrusters. And that’s likely because many average surfers are realizing that, when compared to knifed-out, high-performance thrusters, some alternative boards are just easier and more fun to ride. Surfer

OB Cops Pay for Sweater and Socks for Barefoot Homeless Man

This story made it everywhere. In Ocean Beach, two police officers turned a petty theft call into an act of compassion and humanity. Rookie San Diego police officers Dominic Collins and his partner Christian Nimmons are experiencing the complexity of the city’s homeless and transient population firsthand. “I’m born and raised here so I’ve kind of seen the homeless crisis. You see it everywhere, in any part of San Diego,” said Collins. One chilly January morning, they answered a petty theft call from Rite Aid. A barefoot homeless man named Daniel had removed the tags of a sweatshirt and refused to take it off. “’ You know we don’t want to press charges, we just want the sweater back so that he’ll be on his way,’” said Collins, recounting the Rite Aid employee’s words. “I asked how much it cost and looked over at my partner Dom and he already knew where I was going with it. He then stepped inside to pay for the sweatshirt,” Nimmons said.

The store employee then ended up giving Daniel the sweatshirt, but the good deeds didn’t stop there. “We’re humans too so, let’s just give him a pair of socks and shoes,” Collins said. It’s no secret the coastal communities tend to attract homeless and transient populations, oftentimes these people face mental health and addiction issues. The officers told NBC 7, they’re aware one act of kindness will cause a small ripple in the homeless crisis but that’s why they chose to serve the community. “Maybe a long term solution too and I mean now he’s got people who care. Us, we care,” Collins said. “One thing I learned in the marines is your feet are your life. You gotta take care of your feet so maybe he can start a new life with his feet taken care of,” said Collins. NBC 7 could not locate Daniel. SDPD could not release his last name or any info, as it’s against policy. A Rite Aid corporate spokesperson could not comment on this story, but is aware of the kind act by their employee. SanDiegoNBC

Surf Rider Pizza Up for Sale

Many of the restaurants once owned and operated by Gina Champion-Cain are now up for sale as part of an ongoing effort by a court-appointed receiver to recover millions of dollars from the San Diego businesswoman’s once robust portfolio. This includes the Surf Rider Pizza in OB and the other three locations. Two San Diego brokerages have been given the go-ahead to market a total of nine Champion-Cain dining venues, including Saska’s, a Mission Beach mainstay since the 1950s, and the Patio on Lamont in Pacific Beach. All but four of the listed restaurants — Saska’s, the Patio in Pacific Beach and the Surf Rider restaurants in La Mesa and Ocean Beach — are closed, a consequence of federal fraud charges filed in August against Champion-Cain and her investment company, ANI Development.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has accused them of operating a $300 million scheme in which they allegedly solicited investors to make short-term, high-interest loans to people applying for alcohol licenses in California. Instead of using the investors’ money to make those loans, Champion-Cain instead directed investor funds to a company that she controlled, the SEC claims. Her company’s assets have been frozen since August and are under the control of a receiver. Receiver Krista Freitag noted in one of her legal filings in federal court that she was “forced to quickly close most of the restaurant, retail and other operations of the receivership entities” due largely to a shortage of cash. …  Other closed Champion-Cain restaurants not included as part of the current listings are Fireside by the Patio at Liberty Station and Patio on Goldfinch….The four former Champion-Cain restaurants that remain open are being operated in the short term by the San Diego-based Cohn Restaurant Group. See Union-Tribune.

Missing Inmate Found in Midway District

State law enforcement officers arrested a fugitive 53-year-old inmate Wednesday, just one day after he tampered with his GPS monitor and went missing from a San Diego reentry facility, authorities said. Steven Vargas was found Wednesday in a parking lot near the sports arena in the Midway District based on “investigative leads,” according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.  Officers took him into custody without incident and took him to Donovan state prison in Otay Mesa.  Vargas went missing a little before noon Tuesday from the Male Community Reentry Program in Barrio Logan, state prison officials said. He’d been given permission to leave the facility in the morning, but about two hours later authorities were notified that his GPS monitor had been tampered with. Law enforcement officers were immediately sent to find Vargas, but were unable to do so, and he did not return Tuesday afternoon to the facility, corrections officials said. SDU-T

Data Release: 22 Pedestrians, 5 Bicyclists Killed in 2019 in City of San Diego – W.Pt Loma & Rosecrans On List

Collision data compiled by Circulate San Diego shows that in 2019, 44 people traveling by foot, bicycle, motorcycle, or vehicle died in the City of San Diego. Overall, 14 fewer fatalities occurred in 2019 than in 2018, however, 2019 still had more fatalities than 2017. The Vision Zero goal of zero traffic fatalities is still a long way off as San Diego approaches the midpoint of its 10 year Vision Zero commitment. Half of the 2019 fatalities were pedestrians. The 22 pedestrian fatalities is a reduction from 34 in 2018, however that is unfortunately still more than the 17 pedestrians killed in 2017. Five bicyclists died in 2019 after two years in a row with zero bicyclist fatalities in the City of San Diego. 2019 Collision data was compiled by Circulate San Diego from data released monthly to the City’s new Mobility Board. The data compilation is attached below and available here for download.

Pets owned by homeless people get veterinarian care once a month in Ocean Beach

On a recent Saturday morning, there was a banner for the group Street Dog Coalition outside the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego in Ocean Beach. Inside the courtyard, there was a table with bags of dog treats, food and pet jackets. There was also a team of veterinarians and volunteers ready to give exams, vaccinations and medication to prevent animals getting fleas and ticks. It was the third clinic at the Ocean Beach church, which has agreed to host the event the second Saturday of each month, with the next scheduled for 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Feb. 8. Veterinarian Jon Geller started the coalition in 2015 to help homeless pet owners he saw around his practice in Fort Collins, Colo. Other veterinarians quickly joined him. SDU-T

Man on Trial Tells Jury He Didn’t Kill Ocean Beach Resident

A National City electrician told a jury Tuesday he did not kill an Ocean Beach man whose body has never been found; he disappeared in 2017. Brian Eleron Hancock, 49, said he was in contact with Peter Bentz, 68, for five days after Bentz disappeared Nov. 21, 2017. Hancock claimed Bentz had planned a vacation to Mexico and doesn’t know what happened to him. Deputy District Attorney Jeffrey Dort showed Hancock some bloody sections of the carpeting in Bentz’s apartment, and Hancock said he never saw any blood stains. Investigators found Bentz’s blood in 17 locations in his apartment and it appeared someone tried to clean up the scene.

Hancock said Bentz gave him credit cards and his car to use because Hancock was low on funds. Hancock confirmed he purchased bleach, a saw, a “survival knife,” cleaning supplies, and other items. The seven woman, five man jury and San Diego Superior Court Judge Joan Weber have seen video surveillance footage of Hancock inside the Chula Vista Walmart at 2 a.m. and other stores. Hancock said he purchased a hand trowel and gloves for a job in Paradise Hills.

Hancock said he wasn’t angry at Bentz after hearing a woman tell him that Bentz videotaped Hancock and herself while having sex and put the tape online. The woman said she got a message with a clip to a video that asked her “is this you, Rosa?” Hancock testified that he and the woman could not open the video, so he wondered what was on it. He said he received assurances from Bentz that he did not videotape them.

Dort said in his opening statement on Jan. 7 that Hancock was enraged by the idea of a sex video of himself and this woman. Dort said Hancock had admitted to a friend that he stabbed Bentz seven times. Hancock told jurors he was not upset because “there wasn’t a video.” In fact, Hancock said that Bentz had videotaped him and Bentz engaging in sex acts and that Bentz put it online. Hancock said the only apprehension he had about the video was that he didn’t want his wife or children to see it. He said he was reassured that it was only a live feed that someone could not access afterwards.

Hancock also said he showed up at Bentz’s apartment days before he disappeared and found him making a sex video with three other men. Hancock claimed Bentz offered him up to $3,000 to be in the video. He also said that he told the truth about it to his wife when he got home. “How’d that go?” asked Dort. “Not well,” replied Hancock. “I told her I was making a video, a group sex video. I told her it was me and three other guys.” “She was very upset with that information. She said, ‘How could you do this?” said Hancock, adding that he did it for the money. “She was still livid, disgusted.” The Star News 

See San Diego Union-Tribune account.

Sailing Vessel “Point Loma” Wrecked in 1896 at Columbia River

The sailing vessel named “Point Loma” was one of at least 17 vessels that became wrecked at the treacherous mouth of the Columbia River between 1881 and 1909. The Point Loma was wrecked 1896. In the 1880s, 1890s, and 1900s, the wheat harvest and timber crops of the region drew sailing ships, like big moths, to the mouth of the Columbia River. Some of those ships piled up on the sandy peninsula to the north. For a time there was an intriguing assembly of battered husks on what used to be called the “Weather Beach.” In those years, sailing ships were the ideal conveyances for bulk cargoes to be moved long distances without the urgency of time. The winds were free fuel and there were plenty of deep-water sailors skilled in the art of sailing by the wind. Chinook Observer

Local Businesses In Da NewZ

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Allie January 24, 2020 at 7:06 pm

Under the picture should be more like… out on a limb, while trying to disturb the quality of life of neighbor’s near 2269 Ebers St.


Chaz Lomack January 25, 2020 at 12:23 pm

I know right! A nice home is such an eyesore compared to a derelict, abandoned construction yard.


Frank Gormlie January 29, 2020 at 12:19 pm

Brian Hancock was found guilty of killing Peter Bentz, whose body has never been found.
A jury on Monday found a National City man guilty of first-degree murder in the 2017 killing of an Ocean Beach man whose body has never been found.

Prosecutors alleged that Brian Eleron Hancock, 49, killed Peter Bentz, 69, believing that Bentz had posted a video online of them having sex together and separately with a woman.

Investigators never found the purported sex video or Bentz’s computer or his body, which they believe was buried somewhere around Campo in rural East County.

Hancock was charged with one count of murder. Jurors in the case prosecuted in San Diego Superior Court began deliberations Wednesday after hearing more than two weeks of testimony.

Hancock faces a sentence of 25 years to life in prison on the murder charge. He may face additional time after pleading guilty on Monday in two other cases: a 2018 charge of transporting methamphetamine for sale and a 2017 burglary of a business.

His sentencing was set for Feb. 26. SDU-T


Frank Gormlie January 29, 2020 at 12:29 pm

The San Diego City Council narrowly voted Tuesday to approve a ban on motorized scooters on the city’s boardwalks.

In a 5-4 vote, all motorized devices will be banned on beach boardwalks across the city. The vote came on the second reading of the proposal in council.

“Today was a big win in prioritizing public safety over corporate interests,” President Pro Tem Barbara Bry’s office wrote in a press release to NBC 7. “This is a public safety issue, not a transportation or mobility issue.”
Now that the ordinance has been approved, the San Diego city clerk has two days to send the proposal to the mayor’s office. Then, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has 10 days to sign the ordinance. If he signs the proposal, it will take effect 30 days after that.

Therefore, if the mayor signs the ordinance, the earliest the ban could take effect would be Feb. 27. The latest would be March 10. nbcsandiego


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