An elderly woman who mistook the gas pedal for the brake ran over
and killed her husband this morning at their home near Martinez, according to
the California Highway Patrol.

Officers responded at 10:46 a.m. to the 2600 block of Reliez Valley Road near the border of Martinez on a report from Martinez police of a solo car crash, CHP Officer John Fransen said.

Fransen said a woman in her 80s was trying to reposition a Toyota
Corolla in a garage and her husband was standing near the car, giving her
directions.

The woman told officers she accidentally hit the accelerator instead of the brake pedal and struck her husband before crashing through the back wall of the garage and pinning him underneath the car, Fransen said.

The car ultimately came to rest in the backyard, he said.

The man was alive and conscious when medical crews transported him to John Muir Medical Center. He was able to provide a statement to police
corroborating his wife’s account, but just over an hour later, he succumbed
to his injuries while being treated at the hospital, Fransen said.

The man’s name was not immediately being released, according to
Fransen.

The collision remains under investigation by the CHP.

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nancy

We’ve had months of real estate prices spiking ever upwards and homes selling in less than 10 days with multiple offers, often for over the listed price—but as of late July, the Claycord market has finally started to normalize slightly.  

Here in the East Bay we often experience a very [CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THE STORY....]

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The “Water Cooler” is a feature on Claycord.com where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it.

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday at noon.

Today’s question:

“Cecil” the lion is dead, and a Minnesota man is now apologizing for killing, skinning and beheading the prized animal.

Watch the video.

Do you think this man feels bad for killing this lion, or do you think he’s just apologizing because he was caught.

Also, do you think he should be prosecuted, especially since he already has been convicted in the United States for poaching a black bear?

Talk about it….

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fire

Firefighters this morning have controlled a 10-acre grass fire near state Highway 24 in Lafayette, according to the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District.

The fire was first reported just after 4 a.m., and caused smoke and ash to travel to Claycord this morning.

photo credit: Craig Cannon – for use only on Claycord.com

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contra

After an outcry from public employee unions over a proposed salary hike for Contra Costa County supervisors last fall, the Board of Supervisors voted on Tuesday to accept a smaller raise recommended by an ad hoc committee last month.

In June, the ad hoc committee on supervisors’ compensation recommended a 12 percent pay increase spread out over three years. That raise is in addition to a 7 percent pay increase the board already approved in March.

Supervisors initially voted in November to give themselves a 33 percent raise, which would have increased their salary from $97,483 to [CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THE STORY....]

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sunset

Thanks to Adrian for this photo, which shows the smokey sunset on Tuesday.

Beautiful sunset, but unfortunately it’s because of all the fires around California.

Thanks again, Adrian.

Click on the photo for a much larger view.

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grass_fire

A small vegetation fire was extinguished on Tice Valley Blvd. in Walnut Creek this afternoon.

No injuries or damage was reported.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, however, it’s rumored that a discarded cigarette butt was responsible for this blaze.

Please don’t throw your cigarette butts out the window.

Thanks to Raina for the photo.

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tom_wentling

Tonight is Thomas Wentling’s last night as the Concord City Treasurer.

A native of Concord, Wentling has served as City Treasurer since 1985. He had served on the City Council from 1970 to 1974, as Councilmember and Vice Mayor.

Wentling has been active in the Concord business community for over 40 years. He owned and operated a small chain of camera stores located throughout Contra Costa County until he sold the business in early 1997.

Wentling has also served the community as past president of the Concord Chamber of Commerce and Concord Rotary Club, and as past chairperson of Concord Community Development Committee. During his many years of service to the Diablo Valley region, he has been involved with numerous committees benefiting the community, and has also been active in his field as president of Photo Marketing Association International.

Congratulations on your retirement.

Tim McGallian, who’s the founder and president of the Todos Santos Business Association Arts Foundation, has been appointed to complete the remainder of Wentling’s term.

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sparetheair

Bay Area residents have been asked to avoid driving alone again on Wednesday during the second consecutive Spare the Air day.

It is the second Spare the Air alert issued for the season. High temperatures and light winds forecasted throughout the week are expected to lead to unhealthy smog.

During Spare the Air days, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District asks that residents take public transit, carpool, walk or bike rather than driving alone.

In addition, residents are advised not to exercise outdoors during the hottest times of day, when smog levels are at their highest.

Smog can lead to throat irritation, congestion, chest pain, asthma attacks and can worsen bronchitis or emphysema, according to the air district.

“Tailpipe exhaust is the biggest contributor to smog so we’re asking Bay Area residents to leave their cars at home and find a better way to work rather than driving alone,” air district executive officer Jack Broadbent said in a statement.

More information about Spare the Air alerts is available at www.sparetheair.org.

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bill_cosby

Alright, here’s a good one.

Did anybody go spend “An Evening with Bill Cosby” at the Concord Pavilion on Sunday June 22, 1975?

This ad was in the Oakland Tribune 40 years ago when Cosby was 38-years-old. Look at the prices for the tickets at the Pavilion!

ABOUT THE CLAYCORD ONLINE MUSEUM: The Claycord Online Museum is made up of historical photos, documents & anything else that has to do with the history of our area.

If you have any old photos or items that you’d like to place in the Claycord Online Museum, just scan or take a photo of them, and send them to the following address: news@claycord.com. It doesn’t matter what it is, even if it’s just an old photo of your house, a scan of an old advertisement or an artifact that you’d like us to see, send it in and we’ll put it online!

Click on the tag below titled “Claycord Online Museum” to view other items!

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This week the Bay Area will experience a heat wave with highs in the 90s and 100s, with the highest temperatures today through Thursday, according to the National Weather Service.

Wednesday is when temperatures are expected to be at this week’s peak, with a forecast of 104 degrees in Concord, according to the weather service.

The weather service warns against engaging in strenuous activity and recommends rescheduling physically demanding activities to the early morning or evening to avoid heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Many community centers, senior centers, and public libraries in the region may be serving this week as cooling centers, designated facilities where the public can have access to air conditioning and refuge from the
extreme heat. They typically are open during the facilities’ normal hours of operation.

Contra Costa County health officials said all senior centers in the county will serve as cooling centers this week.

During periods of extreme heat, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends staying in air-conditioned shelter, keeping body temperatures from overheating by avoiding direct sunlight, wearing lightweight clothing and staying hydrated.

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The “Water Cooler” is a feature on Claycord.com where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it.

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday at noon.

Today’s question:

  • If you had to get one pet for your family, what would it be?

Talk about it….

{ 59 comments }

wikipedia

A federal appeals court in San Francisco for a second time rejected a challenge by two Asian-American groups to a California law that bans the possession and sale of detached shark fins within the state.

A panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the California statute, which was enacted in 2011 and went fully into effect in 2013, didn’t interfere with a federal law on offshore fishery management or with constitutionally protected interstate commerce.

Circuit Judge Andrew Hurwitz wrote, “The purpose of the Shark Fin Law is to conserve state resources, prevent animal cruelty, and protect wildlife and public health. These are legitimate matters of local concern.”

The court upheld a decision in which U.S. District Judge William Orrick last year dismissed the lawsuit filed in 2012 by the San Francisco-based Chinatown Neighborhood Association and Burlingame-based Asian Americans for Political Advancement.

Shark finning is the practice of cutting the fins off a living shark and discarding the shark’s body in the ocean, where it will die.

The main use of shark fins is in shark fin soup, an important element of Chinese cultural tradition at ceremonial occasions.

The two groups alleged the law discriminated against Chinese-Americans and conflicted with federal fishery management.

In an earlier ruling in 2013, the appeals court rejected the bias claim, saying there was no evidence the state Legislature intended to discriminate against Chinese-Americans rather than to accomplish humanitarian and conservation goals.

But the court said the two groups could pursue further proceedings on the federal-law-conflict and interstate commerce claims. The organizations appealed again after Orrick dismissed an amended version of the lawsuit.

The decision upholding the dismissal was made by a three-judge panel of the appeals court. All three judges agreed the lawsuit in its most recent form should be dismissed, but Judge Stephen Reinhardt said in a partial dissent that the groups should be allowed to amend the lawsuit again to expand on the claim that the state law conflicts with the federal fisheries management law.

The ruling can be appealed further to an 11-judge panel of the 9th Circuit or to the U.S. Supreme Court. Joseph Breall, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said the groups “are considering all the options.”

“We believe the law is still unconstitutional,” he said. Humane Society of the United States attorney Ralph Henry said the society “applaud(s) the court for upholding California’s decisive action on this important animal welfare and conservation measure.”

“The California law and similar laws recently passed in more than a half dozen other states are critical tools in preventing the loss of millions of sharks each year to the cruel practice of finning,” Henry said in a statement.

The lawsuit was filed against state officials. The Humane Society, the Monterey Bay Aquarium Foundation and the Asian Pacific American Ocean Harmony Alliance were allowed to participate as official parties to join the state in defending the law.

photo credit: “Shark finning” by Sebastián LosadaMbour. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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The City of Concord will consider placing art on utility boxes at five locations in the area of Monument Blvd.

At tonight’s meeting, the Concord City Council will discuss a report by the city’s Youth and Education Committee, saying the city should work with Streets Alive!, an initiative of Earth Island Institute that produces public art projects, to place vinyl wrap artwork on utility boxes.

The committee began defining a pilot program that would initially begin with five locations in the Monument Area. The Committee expressed a desire for the art on utility box pilot program to contain the following elements:

  • Involvement of youth – grades 6th through 12th – through art contests/submissions
  • Use of vinyl wrap in lieu of direct painting of utility boxes
  • Funding sources other than the General Fund, including donations/sponsorships
  • Consideration of tactfully placed sponsorship recognition on wraps
  • Encouraging art that incorporates cultural designs representing the area (no words)
  • Using the Youth and Education Committee to select art designs and approve artwork

Staff has not yet solicited bids from vinyl wrap contractors but has received initial cost information from Streets Alive!, who indicates that the average cost of placing vinyl wrap artwork on utility boxes is $2,500 per location.

If vandalized, the cost to remove graffiti from a utility box can range from as low as $40 to as much as $160 per occurrence depending on the amount of vandalism and the abatement methods used.

This program will be funded through sponsorships and donations; at this time no City resources are being allocated to the program other than the staff time needed to work with the Streets Alive! organizers, according to the City of Concord.

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The search for a missing 8-year-old girl in Santa Cruz ended in tragedy this evening when detectives found the body of a young female in a dumpster near the missing child’s residence, police said.

The body was found around 7:55 p.m. in a dumpster behind the Tannery Arts Center at 1030 River St., according to Santa Cruz Police Chief Kevin Vogel, who called the discovery horrible and heartbreaking.

“Although we have not positively identified her yet we believe that she is probably Madyson Middleton,” Vogel said tonight during a press conference near the crime scene.

“The coroner’s office typically makes confirmation, but at this time we are confident that it’s Madyson Middleton,” Vogel said.

A 15-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of homicide and is being questioned by detectives at the Santa Cruz Police Department, according to Chief Kevin Vogel.

He also lives at the Tannery Arts Center and was present at approximately the same time as the body was discovered, Vogel said, but the sole suspect’s relationship to the victim is not currently known.

When reporters asked if the clothing on the victim matched the clothing Madyson was wearing when last seen Sunday evening, Vogel stated that it’s too soon to be certain.

“The way the body is situated in the dumpster where she was located, it’s difficult to tell what the clothing looks like from our vantage point right now,” Vogel said.

He added that investigators are in a “holding pattern” while they prepare to process the crime scene.

The Department of Justice is assisting in the investigation, according to Vogel, and police are planning to release more information sometime Tuesday morning.

Madyson “Maddy” Middleton was last seen near her home shortly after 5 p.m. Sunday, riding on her scooter and playing with friends before she went missing, according to police.

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cpd

A man is in custody tonight after he allegedly kidnapped an employee from a local car dealership, and stole a brand new vehicle, according to the Concord Police Department.

As we first reported earlier this afternoon, the suspect, who has not been identified by police at this time, allegedly entered the dealership and went for a test drive with a vehicle and an employee from that dealership.

While on the test drive, the suspect informed the victim that he was stealing the car and that he, the victim, was being kidnapped, police said.

The suspect drove to the city of Pittsburg where the victim was able to escape from the suspect by getting out of the Chevy Van while it was stopped, according to police.

The victim then called the Concord Police Department.

The suspect fled the area and was later apprehended by Antioch Police after crashing the van.

The suspect was arrested and transported to the county jail on kidnapping, resisting arrest, and vehicle theft charges.

Anyone with additional information on this case is asked to call the Investigations division at 671-3030. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous can call the Concord Police Department Tip-line at 925-603-5836.

RELATED STORY: Concord Kidnapping & Stolen Vehicle Suspect Captured in Antioch

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warmer

The National Weather Service is advising Bay Area residents of the potential for higher-than-normal temperatures this week.

Strong upper-level high pressure is expected to build over the Bay Area this week, causing warm temperatures that could exceed 100 degrees at the warmest interior locations by mid-week, officials said.

The combination of the building high pressure and an offshore flow will lead to a few days of above normal temperatures.

The Bay Area is expected to experience above-normal temperatures, but interior locations will see the warmest temperatures.

The warmest days of the week are expected to be Tuesday through Thursday.

Temperatures are expected to begin to cool later in the week.

The National Weather Service is advising residents to plan accordingly for the hot weather by reducing activities between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., wearing light clothing, drinking lots of water, avoiding heavy meals and avoiding too much sun exposure.

photo: Weather.com

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plane

A worker suffered a minor burn on the arm while trying to put out a fire that ultimately consumed 37 acres in Bay Point this afternoon, a Contra Costa County Fire Protection District official said.

Some welders were [CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THE STORY....]

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A man who is suspected of stealing a new vehicle and kidnapping an employee from a local auto dealership in Concord has been captured in Antioch.

Information is preliminary and hasn’t been confirmed by police at this time, but we’re hearing the suspect allegedly took a vehicle from an auto dealership in Concord while an employee was inside, possibly during a test drive.

The incident occurred just after 3pm today.

The person was able to escape after he jumped out of the vehicle in Pittsburg, which is where he called Concord Police.

The suspect’s identity hasn’t been released at this time.

We’ll post more information as soon as it’s available.

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