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Listen To Your News Tuesday, July 16, 2013 News Archive
     

SMOKE ADVISORY ISSUED LOCALLY FROM FIRE NEAR IDYLLWILD
The Mojave Desert Air Quality Management District has issued a Smoke Advisory for Yucca Valley, Morongo Valley and surrounding communities. The smoke blanketing the Morongo Basin is from a fire near Idyllwild. The fire was first reported about 1:30 Monday afternoon and was up to 8,000 acres as of noon today and is still 10 percent contained. At least one structure has burned, and residents in the Mountain Center area have been evacuated. Portions of Highways 243 and 74 are closed due to the fire. A strike team from Yucca Valley Fire Station 41, and about 325 firefighters, four helicopters, six air tankers, four water tenders and two bulldozers were sent to the scene, according to Cal Fire. The fire is believed to have started on private property adjacent to the forest. If you see or smell smoke in the air where you are, be cautious and use common sense to protect your family's health. Everyone—especially people with heart or lung disease, older adults and children —should limit time spent outdoors and avoid outdoor exercise when smoke is in the area. If you have symptoms of lung or heart disease that may be related to exposure to smoke and particles, including repeated coughing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, wheezing, chest tightness or pain, contact your health care provider. Levels of smoke and particles will depend on changes in winds and the containment of the fire. This advisory will be in effect as long as conditions warrant.

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ONE ARRESTED, ONE INJURED, DURING BRAWL IN TWENTYNINE PALMS SUNDAY MORNING
One man was arrested, and one was seriously injured, during a brawl in Twentynine Palms early Sunday morning. Shortly before 2 a.m., Sheriff deputies responded to a fight in the 6000 block of Ocotillo Avenue involving 20 to 30 people. An unidentified Marine was seriously injured when he was hit with a tire iron and then possibly stabbed. He was taken to Desert Hospital in Palm Springs. During the course of the investigation, Melvin Peters, 23, of Twentynine Palms was arrested on multiple warrants out of Orange County and for resisting arrest and being drunk and disorderly. According to Sheriff Sergeant James Porter, the investigation is ongoing and more arrests are expected.

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COFFEE WITH RAMOS, PART 1 OF THREE: PUBLIC QUESTIONS
During the inaugural "Coffee with the Supervisor" gathering and the subsequent media-only session at the Bob Burke Government Center in Joshua Tree Monday morning, Supervisor James Ramos fielded a wide range of questions. In the first of three reports, Dan Stork tells what issues were raised by the general public. In later stories, he'll describe how the Supervisor dealt with questions from local media…
The "Coffee with…" portion of the event started with general milling about and socializing among the attendees. Halfway through the scheduled coffee klatch, Supervisor Ramos clarified how he had hoped the gathering would proceed. He said that he wanted people who came to come shake his hand, and tell him right then and there what was on their minds. He listed issues on which he has been active: videoconferencing facilities; a moratorium on solar energy development on lands under county jurisdiction; the scheduling of public meetings on the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan in Apple Valley and Yucca Valley for September; water for Pioneertown; regional Municipal Advisory Committees; a regional approach to tourism development; and encouraging other county officials to visit the Morongo Basin. He then moved into a Q&A session, heavy on the Q, light on the A. Issues raised during this interval included: CALTRANS responses to highway safety issues in Morongo Valley; a plea for more traffic signals in that community; a potential oil pipeline through the Morongo Basin; integrity of the water tables; sparse police coverage; and a Citizen's Review Board for Child Protective Services.

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YUCCA VALLEY WOMAN ARRESTED AN SERIES OF WARRANTS
A Yucca valley woman was arrested early Sunday morning after a caller told police she was wanted in two counties. According to a police report, Sheriff's dispatch was notified shortly after midnight Sunday morning that Bree Lewis, 22, was living in an apartment in the 56800 block of Antelope Trail. According to Sheriff arrest records, Lewis had warrants out for her arrest for three charges of breaking and entering, theft, and battery; deputies also arrested Bree Lewis for investigation of possession of narcotics, and possession of a controlled substance. Lewis was booked into the Morongo Basin Jail with her total bail set at $550,000.

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TWENTYNINE PALMS WOMAN ARRESTED FOR FELONY SPOUSAL ABUSE
A Twentynine Palms woman was arrested early Sunday morning after her ex-boyfriend said she bit him. According to a Sheriff's report, the ex-boyfriend of Elizabeth Espericueta, 35, told dispatchers he was trying to drive her home from the 7200 block of Adobe Road about 2 a.m. when she started "flipping out" on him. He said he was trying to hold her down so she couldn't assault him. However, he was finding it difficult to hold her with one hand while he was on the phone with police. During their altercation, she swung at him and bit him on the arm, hard enough to cause his arm to bleed. After an investigation, deputies arrested Elizabeth Espericueta on suspicion of felony spouse abuse, booked her into the Morongo Basin Jail, with her bail set at $50,000.

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WE TALK TO A MARINE IN AFGHANISTAN
The United States isn't the only country with troops deployed to Afghanistan; NATO has a presence there as well, with Georgian, Italian, and British troops, among others. A Marine with Regimental Combat Team-7 from Twentynine Palms spent the first half of his deployment to Afghanistan in Kabul working with NATO and Afghani troops. Managing editor Tami Roleff says Corporal Luis (lou ees) Martinez has some interesting memories…
Corporal Luis Martinez, 21, has a couple of favorite moments of his time in Kabul. "My whole entire team had to Zumba one day for PT." Martinez said he really enjoyed the dance fitness program. "Some of us kept going after it ended." He enjoyed his time with the NATO and Afghani forces; he escorted them all over the country, but the places he saw reminded him of more familiar places. "Kabul looks like Vegas at night." And Kandahar? "Closer to Twentynine Palms. Desert." And he was surprised when he was in northern Afghanistan. "It was nice seeing during the wintertime when we'd fly over the mountains and you'd never think they were covered in snow up north." A moment with the Afghanis that sticks out in his mind was when they were getting ready to leave for their vacations on airplanes. "Right before we took off, a lot of them wanted to take pictures with us, and we only had a certain amount of time to get back, and they took over 100 pictures with us." And what did he think of the photos? "Didn't get a single one; they kept them all for themselves."

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BLOOD DRIVE TOMORROW IN YUCCA VALLEY
Desert Blood Services will conduct a community blood drive tomorrow at Vons in Yucca Valley from 2 to 5 p.m. Donors will receive incentives. In addition, Desert Blood Services now offers donors free cholesterol screening with every blood donation. All prospective donors should be free of infections or illness, weigh at least 110 pounds, and not be at risk for AIDS or hepatitis. To make an appointment to donate blood, call 877-827-4376.

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COPPER MOUNTAIN COLLEGE GETS 6 YEAR ACCREDITATION
After a tremendous effort by the staff, Copper Mountain College has received a six-year accreditation. Reporter Mike Lipsitz has details….
Copper Mountain College has been reaccredited for the next six years following an intensive review by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges. In March 2013 the Commission's Site Team visited CMC to verify compliance with the accreditation standards, eligibility requirements and commission policies. In his remarks on the year's long process, CMC President/Superintendent Dr. Roger Wagner said, "The effort that goes into such a positive outcome can't be overstated.... I'm extremely proud of our faculty, staff, administration and board of trustees who have worked so hard to make this possible."

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TWENTYNINE PALMS PLANNING COMMISSION CONTINUES ON DEVELOPMENT CODE UPDATE
The only item on the agenda of the Twentynine Palms Planning Commission agenda tonight is the 24th study session on the Development Code update. The staff report for this meeting does not indicate which sections of the code will be under discussion. The Commission meets at 6 pm in council chambers in City Hall on Adobe Road.

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YUCCA VALLEY GENERAL PLAN ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETS TOMORROW
The Yucca Valley General Plan Advisory Committee continues its efforts with the Town's General Plan update at its next meeting this Wednesday, July 17 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Yucca Valley Community Center. A review the draft circulation and noise elements, including the recommended implementation actions is on the agenda for this meeting. The Town encourages public participation. You can see the draft circulation and noise elements update by following the link in this story at KCDZFM.com

http://www.yucca-valley.org/departments/proposed_genplan.html

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"PERILS OF GOLDILOCKS" CONTINUES AT THEATRE 29
The Theatre 29 Youth Theatre production of "The Perils of Goldilocks" is playing Friday and Saturdays at Theatre 29 with a sunday matinee this week. Special Correspondent Les Taylor says this is a great first show for kids…
"The Perils of Goldilocks," the popular summer youth theatre production now on stage at Theatre29 in Twentynine Palms, continues to delight audiences young and old. Under the direction of John Wright and assistant director Lizzie Schmelling, the company of 20 zany characters is performing weekends through July. Friday and Saturday shows begin at 7 p.m. and a matinee show Sunday the 21st begins at 2:30 p.m. Tickets range from $8 to $12. Reservations can be made by calling the box office at 460-361-4151 or go online to Theatre29.org. Featuring Marissa Thomas in the title role, "The Perils of Goldilocks" is the perfect way to introduce your youngster to the joy of live theatre and maybe even light the spark that produces our next young star. Theatre 29 is on Sullivan Road just west of Adobe in 29 Palms.

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JUGGLER RETURNS TO THE TWENTYNINE PALMS LIBRARY TOMORROW
The Twentynine Palms Library is continuing its summer reading program shows for teens tomorrow at 4 pm. Join them for a spectacular juggling show with Michael Rayner. Michael's show has been described as "preposterous brilliance" and "whacky jugglement," a combination of hilarious tricks and stunts with uproarious stand-up and a bounty of improvised fun. For more information about the library's Summer Reading Program, call the Twentynine Palms library at 760-367-9519.

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