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Listen To Your News Thursday, February 7, 2013 News Archive
     

CANADIAN TOURIST HIT AND KILLED IN YUCCA VALLEY LAST NIGHT
A Canadian tourist was killed last night as he crossed the highway in Yucca Valley. Sheriff's Sergeant Randy Warfield said Barney Brown, 79, of British Columbia, was staying in Yucca Valley attending the King of the Hammers off-vehicle road race in Johnson Valley. The man's family had dropped him off at Wal-Mart, and he was walking back to his hotel in the 56500 block of 29 Palms Highway. About 6:30, he crossed from the north side of the highway at Grand Avenue to the south side, directly in front of the Ideal Mall, when he was hit by a Dodge Dakota pick-up truck driven by Velta Garcia, 67, of Yucca Valley. Sheriff's Traffic Investigator Curtis Kolb said "For unknown reasons, Brown walked directly into the path of Garcia's vehicle and she was unable to avoid hitting him." The impact of the crash threw him about 80 feet, killing him instantly. His socks, shoes, baseball cap, and purchases littered the highway at the site of the impact. Both eastbound lanes, and one westbound lane, were closed for hours, as Sheriff officials investigated the crash. There are no crosswalks in the area, and traffic signals at Mohawk Trail and Sage Avenue are a mile apart, with the Ideal Mall half-way between the two lights.

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JOSHUA TREE HOME BURNS TO THE GROUND
It wasn't the way a Joshua Tree man was expecting to spend his birthday yesterday, watching his home burn to the ground. Matt Jackson, of the 3400 block of Stonehill Avenue, told Z107.7 News that he was working in his garage about 5:15 p.m. when he accidentally spilled acetone onto an electrical outlet, sparking a fire. garage was fully involved in flames when firefighters from Joshua Tree, Yucca Valley, Yucca Mesa, Morongo Valley, and the Combat Center arrived. Firefighters attempted to put out the fire, but when it became obvious the house could not be saved, they went into defensive mode to keep the fire from spreading to nearby vegetation. Jackson told firefighters he had a hundred rounds of large-caliber ammunition stored inside the home. Because it was too dangerous to enter the home to retrieve the ammunition, the firefighters cut a door into the wall next to where it was stored to remove it from the home. Fire fighters were on the scene until about midnight.

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KING OF THE HAMMER EVENT CONTINUES IN YUCCA VALLEY
One of the biggest off-roading events in the country is underway at Johnson Valley ORV recreation site. The King of the Hammers attracts some 30,000 people every year. Reporter Kristy Lockhart tells you there's still time to get in on the action…
317 riders and drivers will compete this week in open desert races. "Thirty thousand people in the desert watching cars drive obstacles they shouldn't drive and going faster than they should be going."
Speeds reach 110 miles an hour; the 8-foot vertical rock walls make it one of the toughest courses in the country. Jason Henney came all the way from Springfield, Missouri. It's his fourth year competing; he hopes it's not his last. "Unbelievable place here, we're still really fighting to keep this race going." For a complete list of the King of Hammers events, visit the website below. Tickets are $20 for the week. http://ultra4racing.com/the-inside-line/2013-king-of-the-hammers-week-schedule/

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CHARGES FILED AGAINST MAN WHO KILLED 3 HESPERIA TEENAGERS
Vehicular manslaughter charges were filed against a man accused of killing three Hesperia teenagers in a Johnson Valley head-on collision; drunk driving charges were not filed, according to the District Attorney. Charles Persons, 31, of Thousand Oaks, will be arraigned in Joshua Tree court today. Persons was charged with killing Jordan LaRocque, Ruben Ramos and Tyler Correll, who were on their way home after LaRocque picked up his paycheck in Yucca Valley. The teenagers were driving on Old Woman Springs Road Saturday evening when Persons, who was assisting a competitor at the King of the Hammers race, crossed the double-yellow lines and moved into their lane, according to the California Highway Patrol.

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WOMAN ARRESTED AFTER ARGUMENT IN TWENTYNINE PALMS
A Twentynine Palms woman was arrested early Tuesday morning after she started an argument with her boyfriend. Shortly before 1 a.m., authorities received a call from a man in the 5200 block of Adobe Road stating he had been stabbed in the leg by Stephanie Loya, 37, and was bleeding. After an investigation, deputies determined that the stabbing had been self-inflicted. But Loya was detained, accused of being the aggressor in the argument with her boyfriend, and was throwing things around and pushing him. Stephanie Loya was arrested on suspicion of domestic battery, booked at the Morongo Basin Jail with her bail set at $25,000.

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MID-TOWN LAND USE WORKSHOP IN YUCCA VALLEY TONIGHT
Residents of the mid-town area of Yucca Valley will have a chance to have a say how they would like to see the area developed. Managing Editor Tami Roleff says a land-use workshop is tonight…
The Town of Yucca Valley is inviting the community to attend its second community workshop on the Mid-Town Master Land Use Vision and Mobility Plan. The Mid-Town area is the heart of Yucca Valley, and the draft master land use plan was prepared based on community input received at the first workshop. The plan includes land use, urban design, mobility, and open space recommendations. At the workshop, participants will have the opportunity to review and comment on the draft plan before it's presented to the Town Council. The workshop will be held Thursday, February 7, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Yucca Room of the Community Center. For more information, call 760-369-6575.

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MILITARY TO GET RAISES, BUT NOT MUCH
Of interest to our military listeners, the Pentagon will formally recommend that troops next year receive a 1-percent increase in basic pay, which would be the smallest pay bump in the 40-year history of the all-volunteer force.

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AUDITIONS SET FOR NEW YUCCA VALLEY THEATRE COMPANY
Auditions will be Sunday, February 17, at 3:00 p.m. at St. Joseph of Aramethia Episcopalian Church in Yucca Valley for the St. Joseph's Players' debut production of "On Golden Pond." The church, located on the corner of Church Street and Onaga Trail, has a small stage with seating for 50. The group will be led by award-winning director/actress Rebecca Havely. The all-volunteer group is seeking actors from 30 to 55 to audition for the roles. The roles of both Norman and Ethyl Thayer have been pre-cast, with Abe Daniels playing Norman and Sue Kelly as Ethel. Acting experience is not required. Rehearsals will be most weeknights from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. plus a couple of Sunday afternoons, from March 11 to April 25, with performances Fridays and Saturdays, and some Saturday matinees, from April 26 to May 18. The production is also seeking a stage manager and a stage hand; if interested please attend the auditions. For more information, call Rebecca Havely at 760-702-2194.

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HI-DESERT WATER DISTRICT SEARCHING FOR MORE SEWER SYSTEM GRANTS
Hi-Desert Water District hopes to get more grant money from Proposition 84 to help fund the sewer project. Reporter Kristy Lockhart tells us what the next step is…
The Board of Directors gambles a little hoping to get a large return. Last night the Board approved a contract with GEI consultants to prepare documents for grant funding. The cost to the water district is about $35,000. Hi-Desert Water District has already received $3 million in funding from the first round of proposition 84 funds. President Roger Mayes says $5.2 million is available in round two. "We are trying to get all the money we can possibly get for the Wastewater Treatment facility." Hi-Desert Water District will compete with other water districts in the Colorado region for the grant money.

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TLC OFFERING FOOD SAFETY CLASS
Tender Love*ing Cause, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is offering a National Restaurant Association's ServSafe Food Manager's Course on Wednesday, February 27, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Morongo Basin Senior Support Center, 57121 Sunnyslope, Yucca Valley. The course and examination are approved by the State of California to meet the requirements of the California Health and Safety code, which requires each food facility to have an owner or operator certified in food safety management. Having a ServSafe Food Management Certificate can create opportunities for those aspiring to enter food service. Early bird enrollments will receive a 25 percent discount off the course fee through February 15. For more information call 800-691-1205.

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FORMER TWENTYNINE PALMS PLANNING COMMISSION MEMBER APPOINTED TO YUCCA VALLEY COMMISSION
A familiar face from Twentynine Palms City Government is stepping up to a leadership role in the Town of Yucca Valley. Managing editor Tami Roleff welcomes Steve Whitten…
A former planning commissioner for the City of Twentynine Palms was named to the Yucca Valley Planning Commission at the Town Council's February 5 meeting. Steve Whitten was named to the commission by Council Member Dawn Rowe. Whitten is a retired Marine who made his home in Twentynine Palms for 15 years until his recent move to Yucca Valley. While a Twentynine Palms resident, he served on the city's General Plan Advisory Committee, ran for City Council—and lost by 74 votes—and was named to the Twentynine Palms Planning Commission in 2011. Also at the meeting, Jeff Drozd and Tim Humphreville were re-appointed to the Planning Commission, and Laurine Silver and Meredith Jones continued in their seats on the Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Commission.

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KIDS VALENTINE'S DANCE IN YUCCA VALLEY SATURDAY
The Town of Yucca Valley's Community Services Department will host a Kid's Valentines Dance on Saturday, February 9, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the Yucca Valley Senior Center. Children in grades K-6 are welcome to attend. Cost for this event is $3 per person. Entertainment will be provided by Z107.7 Mobil DJ. Recreation staff members will supervise this afternoon of fun. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, please call the Town of Yucca Valley Community Services Department, Monday through Thursday from 7:30 – 5:30 p.m. or check online at www.yucca-valley.org.

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HEALTHY HEARTS RUN FEBRUARY 16
Runners, ready, set, go, and sign up for this year's Town of Yucca Valley Healthy Hearts Run. Reporter Taylor Thacker has the details…
Get out your running shoes and run on over to the Healthy Hearts 5k Run in Yucca Valley on Saturday, February 16. The run will start at 8 a.m. This 5K takes you through Yucca Valley's most scenic residential areas known as Sky Harbor and starts and ends at Machris Park. This event is open to all ages and fitness levels. If running isn't your thing, you are invited to participate in the 1.5 mile Family Health Walk. Awards will be presented to overall male and female finishers as well as in age divisions. Please register in advance at the Recreation Office in the Community Center or go online to www.yucca-valley.org. Fees for adults are $20 and $18 for seniors and children of age 12 and under and include a souvenir shirt. For more information call 760-369-7211.

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HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
Coming up in high school sports today, the Yucca Valley girls basketball team will travel away to Thermal to play Desert Mirage High School. Tip off is 6 p.m.

The Joshua Springs Lightning boys' and girls' basketball teams will travel away to Bermuda Dunes to play Desert Christian Academy. The girls' game starts at 5:30; boys at 6:30.

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