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Moraga skateboard park vandalized

The Moraga police log reports:

Tuesday, Nov. 6
VANDALISM — A Town of Moraga public works employee wanted to file a vandalism report. He said at 9 a.m. while walking through Moraga Commons park, he saw that someone had spray painted the skateboard park. The damage estimate is around $250.

TRAFFIC INCIDENT— Officers responded to a traffic collision on St. Mary’s Road north of Bollinger Canyon Road. Officers arrived and contacted the driver of a silver 2006 Toyota Camry. The driver said she started to drive onto the soft shoulder of the roadway and in her attempt to stop, accidentally pushed on the gas pedal. She lost control of her vehicle and struck the Town of Moraga wood sign and metal fence, destroying both and damaging her vehicle.

From the Orinda police blotter:

Friday, Nov. 9
RECEIVED STOLEN PROPERTY — A 25-year-old Oakland man was arrested after police found stolen items in his car. The man was arrested at 1:55 p.m. after police received a message about occupants of a vehicle caught looking through mail boxes. When police confronted the occupants at the intersection of El Toyonal and Alta Vista, several items were noticed that couldn’t be accounted for. Further investigation revealed the items were reported stolen and the Oakland man was on probation.

Saturday, Nov. 10
DISTURBING THE PEACE — A resident of the first block of Oak Road called police for back up after failing to disband a juvenile fund-raiser that got out of hand. Police arrived at 8:54 p.m. to find more than 300 teenagers at the house drinking alcohol. Moraga police were called for backup. The caller said the gathering was a fund-raiser for a local high school water polo team that got out of control when alcohol was snuck in.

Posted on Wednesday, November 21st, 2007
Under: Crime, Lamorinda, Moraga | No Comments »

Police find stolen property in fleeing car

Lafayette police arrested a man Nov. 17 after he led officers on a short pursuit, and they found stolen property in the vehicle, authorities said.

Police got a call about 12:30 p.m. from a resident in the 3300 block of Woodview Drive who reported seeing someone looking into a vehicle, according to sheriff’s Lt. Charles Skuce and Lafayette police Chief Mike Hubbard.

The resident gave responding officers a direction of travel and vehicle description, Skuce said. Officers soon tracked down the vehicle, but the driver did not respond to their attempts to stop it.

The driver led officers on a short pursuit before crashing into two other vehicles at Olympic and Tice Valley boulevards, Skuce said.

Officers arrested Fernando Veliz, 32, of San Pablo, on suspicion of burglary, possession of stolen property and felony evading. He was being held in lieu of $120,000 bail at the West County Detention Facility.

Property in the vehicle had been taken in four residential burglaries and from vehicles, Hubbard said. Officers found a lawnmower on the front seat, an electric guitar and miscellaneous tools, including a leaf blower. The items were returned to owners.

Posted on Wednesday, November 21st, 2007
Under: Crime, Lafayette, Lamorinda | No Comments »

Two neighborhoods battle over traffic calming

At Tuesday’s Lafayette City Council meeting, it seemed the residents of two adjacent neighborhoods might need to be separated by a demilitarized zone.

At issue: Traffic calming measures on Stanley Boulevard and Springbrook Road, which are to be put to a neighborhood vote starting after Thanksgiving.

On one side: Residents on or near the two streets who have been clamouring for traffic calming for years to protect pedestrians heading to nearby schools and parks.

Their opposition: Residents of Bacon Court and Bacon Way, whose only way in and out is along Springbrook Road. They are concerned about emergency response times to their homes.

In the culmination of a four-year process, residents will be sent a ballot on Nov. 26 asking if they want traffic calming along Stanley Boulevard and Springbrook Road, and if so, whether they preferred a design based on speed humps or based on islands, chicanes and other road-narrowing options.

_ Paul Thissen

Posted on Thursday, November 15th, 2007
Under: Lafayette, Lamorinda, Roads | 5 Comments »

Our readers talk turkey and send photos

Let’s talk turkey. It seems that all of Lamorinda is. And the Friday Sun reflects that.

We solicted reader photos of wild turkeys and scores of you emailed images of a seeming wild turkey invasion: Turkeys in the road, on the roof and in back yards throughout Orinda, Moraga and. Lafayette. Check it out in the Friday Sun,

Posted on Thursday, November 15th, 2007
Under: Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda | No Comments »

Police seek man who approached Orinda boy

By Malaika Fraley
ORINDA — Police are looking for a man who approached an 11-year-old boy as the child was walking to Glorietta Elementary School this morning.

“We don’t know what his intent was, but we’re concerned about what it could have been,” Sgt. Steve Andrews said.

The boy was walking on Hillcrest Drive just before 8 a.m. when a man in white truck pulled beside him and offered him a ride, Andrews said.

When the child replied no, the man ordered him to “get in the truck now.” The boy ran to the porch of the nearest house and the truck sped away.

Andrews said the child reported the incident this afternoon to his family, who then brought him to the police station. The Orinda Unified School District sent out an email notifying parents of the incident.

The man is described as white, in his 40s, with blond hair and a scar on the right side of his face. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and a black cap. He was driving a white truck with a lumber rack on top and damage on the driver’s side behind the door.

The child described him as having a British accent.

Police ask anyone with information to contact Detective Nate McCormack at 925-254-6820.

Posted on Tuesday, November 6th, 2007
Under: Crime, Lamorinda, Orinda | No Comments »

A “green” thief in Moraga? Solar panels missing

From the Lafayette police log:

Oct. 22
AUTO THEFT — A locked 1989 Nissan Pathfinder was stolen from an apartment complex in the 1000 block of Second Street between 10 p.m. Sunday and 7:30 a.m. Monday. The SUV’s license plate number is 2YYP927.
From the Moraga police log:

Wednesday, Oct. 24
GRAND THEFT — An officer telephoned a citizen about the theft of two solar panels. He said he went out at noon Oct. 24 and found that two of his solar panels were missing. The last time he remembered seeing them on the hillside behind his house was Oct. 19. The cost to replace the panels is around $2,000.

From the Orinda police log:

Monday, Oct. 22
GRAND THEFT — Some $3,000 in property was reported missing from a car parked in the first block of Don Gabriel Way. The victim notified police at 9:48 a.m.

BURGLARY — Some $700 in jewelry was reported missing from a house in the 100 block of Las Vegas Road after a forced entry into the house. The incident was reported at 2:06 p.m.

Posted on Friday, November 2nd, 2007
Under: Crime, Lamorinda, Moraga | No Comments »

Things to be thankful for

From Mike Zampa’s column Friday:

“WHAT AM I THANKFUL for this Thanksgiving? Next Thanksgiving. The school board just gave it back.
If you have children at Acalanes, Campolindo or Miramonte high schools, you’re probably relieved. Our elected board members flip-flopped last month. They scrapped plans for a radically altered 2008-2009 calendar.

Instead, they voted for a more traditional school year. It’ll begin in late August. It’ll end in mid-June. And it’ll preserve the holidays we hold dear — President’s Day, New Year’s Day and Regis Philbin’s birthday.

Why did our school board do this? Because they listened to reason and their constituents. It was a first in American politics.
In fact, good-government wonks now hope that voting for things that make sense becomes a trend.”

Posted on Friday, November 2nd, 2007
Under: Uncategorized | No Comments »

Turkey sightings? Send photos

We keep hearing stories about rafters of wild turkeys standing in the middle of Lamorinda roadways,. stopping traffic. But so far, the critters have eluded our photographers. Kinda like Big Foot and the Loch Ness Monster. So dear readers, if you see wild turkeys in these days before Thanksgiving, send us the photos as jpgs or prints. Send jpgs to And send prints to Leanne McLaughlin, Lamorinda Sun editor, 2640 Shadelands Drive, Walnut Creek 94598. Include your name and a phone number. We’ll try to run the photos before the holiday.

Posted on Wednesday, October 31st, 2007
Under: Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda, Roads | No Comments »

Bold thieves think big

From the Lafayette police log:

Two burglars interrupted in the act by a Lafayette resident escaped in their gray Toyota Tundra pickup truck Oct. 15. A resident of the 1500 block of Reliez Valley Road arrived house at about 2:45 p.m. Oct. 15 to find an unfamiliar truck parked in her driveway. She walked into her house to get a cordless phone, she told police, and walked back outside to call 911. As she did so, a man ran out the front door and jumped in the truck. Another man ran out the back door and jumped in the truck. The resident banged her phone on the truck’s windows as it quickly sped off, knocking her down. At least $825 in property was missing, although the inventory of missing items was incomplete

Sunday, Sept. 9
BURGLARY — A burglar smashed the door of a house in the 1200 block of El Curtole Boulevard about 5:40 p.m., tripping the house’s alarm system. Jewelry, credit cards and other property valued at $18,725 were taken.

BURGLARY — Burglars pried open the side door of a Mt. Diablo Boulevard restaurant and dragged a large safe from the office. The safe and its contents were valued at $10,000.

Thursday, Oct. 11
BURGLARY — An anvil was stolen from the maintenance yard of the Lafayette School District. Between 3:30 p.m. Wednesday and 8 a.m. Thursday, someone cut the fence of the yard and stole the anvil, valued at $1,000.

Sunday, Oct. 14
AUTO BURGLARY — A resident of the 1100 block of Vacation Drive reported that his unlocked car was burglarized between 9 a.m. Saturday and 7:30 a.m. Sunday. Two sets of golf clubs valued at $600, a handmade calf-skin bible valued at $600, a digital camera valued at $115 and a phone valued at $90 were taken from the car.

From the Orinda police log:

Friday, Oct. 19
GRAND THEFT — Two mountain bikes valued at $4,000 were reported missing from the front porch of a house in the 400 block of Camino Sobrante.

Posted on Thursday, October 25th, 2007
Under: Crime, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Orinda | No Comments »

Watch out for vanilla, toilet seats and high school mascots …

Some unusual items were reported to Lamorinda police in the first half of October:

from Lafayette police:

Wednesday, Oct. 3
THEFT— Checks worth $12,000, $13,000 and $2,500 were stolen from the mail box of a Hope Lane resident.

Tuesday, Oct. 9
PUBLIC INTOXICATION — A 52-year-old Orinda woman was arrested at the intersection of Moraga Road and Mt. Diablo Boulevard on public intoxication charges. She was dancing in the road and cursing at cars, according to police reports. She had two bottles of vanilla extract in her pocket, the report said, which the officer believed she drank to get intoxicated.

Fromt the Moraga police:

Friday, Oct. 12
BATTERY — An assistant principal at Campolindo High School reported a student was injured during the football game. The student was wearing the school mascot costume during the game. During half-time, an Acalanes High School student approached the student and pulled on the costume head, removing it. The student ended up on the ground with a slight injury to her neck. The student identified the responsible Acalanes student to school staff.

Monday, Oct. 15
GRAND THEFT— Officers contacted a citizen regarding a theft report.. She said she had parked her car in her designated carport on Miramonte Drive at 8 p.m. Oct. 14. She returned to her vehicle at 6:30 a.m. Oct. 15 and noticed items missing, including a toilet seat still in the box.

From the Orinda police

Tuesday, Oct. 2
ILLEGAL ENTRY — A family residing in the first block of El Gavilan reported to police at 8:47 a.m. that their home had been invaded by eight juveniles. The suspects were found drinking and using drugs inside the home. The group left when confronted.

Monday, Oct. 8
PETTY THEFT — At 2:01 p.m., a woman reported her laptop stolen while she was at a park in the first block of Orinda Way. Reports state she left the device on a bench for 45 minutes, and when she returned it was gone.

Thursday,Oct. 11
STRONG-ARM ROBBERY— A resident in the first block of El Sueno reported being attacked while in his garage at 9:05 p.m. According to police reports, a man grabbed him from behind the neck and took his wallet, containing credit cards and $800 in cash. He and two others waiting outside then took off. No vehicle was seen or heard.

Posted on Monday, October 22nd, 2007
Under: Crime, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda, Schools | 1 Comment »