January 31, 2004
Former St. Joachim vicar pleads guilty A 72-year-old former Roman Catholic priest, who served as a parochial vicar at St. Joachim Catholic Church in Costa Mesa, pleaded guilty on Friday to sexually assaulting a 15-year-old girl, officials said. Gerardo Jarencio Tanilong pleaded guilty to two felony counts of committing a lewd act upon a child. He faces up to three years and eight months in prison. He was serving at the Our Lady of Guadalupe-Delhi Church in Santa Ana at the time of the incident.
May 21, 2004
Marisa O'Neil Costa Mesa Police had a reunion of sorts on Wednesday night when they arrested a man previously convicted of a series of liquor store robberies in Costa Mesa and Huntington Beach. He was outside a liquor store when they took him into custody Wednesday. Officers recognized Newport Beach resident Michael Wade Dunkovich, also known as the "Yellow Jacket Bandit," as he pulled into a parking lot at the corner of Adams Avenue and Harbor Boulevard.
August 13, 2005
An animal shelter and hospital mired in controversy will soon be torn down and rebuilt. The AAA Animal Hospital and the Orange County Humane Society plan to demolish their existing space in Huntington Beach and to build a new, modern hospital to treat and care for pets. Dr. Samir Botros, who owns and operates the hospital, also plans to demolish and rebuild an animal kennel used to house stray cats and dogs. The shelter has a contract with the city of Costa Mesa to care for stray animals.
October 18, 2000
Deepa Bharath NEWPORT-MESA -- Violent crime is up by about 15% in Costa Mesa but down by 34% in Newport Beach compared to last year, according to statistics recently released by the FBI. The 1999 Uniform Crime Report showed incidents of forcible rape in Costa Mesa increased from 17 in 1998 to 29 in 1999. Aggravated assaults were up from 158 to 180 incidents. There were four murders in 1999 compared to one in 1998. However, the numbers released Sunday showed robberies in Costa Mesa were down 11% and property crimes decreased by about 15%. In Newport Beach, aggravated assaults dropped by almost 50%, from 152 to 80 incidents.
April 23, 2004
Deepa Bharath An 82-year-old woman, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease a year and a half ago, has been missing since Wednesday afternoon when she went to get a haircut, police said. Betty Priest Decker left her home on Canyon Drive to go to Fantastic Sams near West 19th Street and Newport Boulevard, said Costa Mesa Police Lt. John FitzPatrick. Decker is said to be in the "early stages" of the disease. But she is on medication and still needs it, her daughter Joni Peterka said.
January 16, 2004
Deepa Bharath Police are looking for four men who grabbed and inappropriately touched three different women on separate occasions on the same stretch of Victoria Street over the last two weeks, officials said. All three incidents happened between the 500 and 600 blocks of Victoria Street, Costa Mesa Police Lt. John FitzPatrick said. The first attack occurred on New Year's Day at 1:50 a.m., he said. A woman was walking alone in the 600 block of Victoria when a man walked up from behind and pulled her into the driveway of an apartment complex, FitzPatrick said.
March 6, 2004
Marisa O'Neil A suspected drunken driver struck two men, killing one and critically injuring the other early Friday morning in front of a popular nightclub on East 17th Street. Andre Felipe De Oliveira Braga, 31, of Laguna Beach, died in the street in front of the Pierce Street Annex bar where he was hit by a black Mitsubishi Eclipse just past midnight while crossing the road with John Garazulis, 25, of Westminster, who was critically injured, police said.
January 17, 2004
Deepa Bharath Police arrested early Friday morning a 35-year-old Lake Forest man who, officials say, reportedly befriended women in bars, offered them rides home, and then returned under the cover of darkness and sexually assaulted at least two of those women. Romilien Antonio Fleming usually hung out at Pierce Street Annex on East 17th Street, where he met most of his victims, Costa Mesa police Lt. John FitzPatrick said. "He'd usually wait till later in the night and befriend women who are inebriated and then offer them a ride home," he said.
May 15, 2004
Deepa Bharath Police officers Thursday fired 13 rounds at a pit bull, which came charging at an officer who was chasing two fleeing teenagers in a residential neighborhood, officials said. Eight of those bullets hit the dog, killing it instantly, police said. The boys had been stopped by a motorcycle officer near the intersection of Princeton Drive and Fairview Road, said Costa Mesa Police Lt. John FitzPatrick. "One of them was riding a bike without wearing a helmet and the other was riding on the handlebar," he said.
July 10, 2000
SUE DOYLE COSTA MESA -- Rosalind climbed onto her mother's lap to watch a fireworks show in her driveway when a stray bottle rocket -- launched from a neighbor's house -- struck the 2-year-old. The child burst into screams, terrified. And so were her family and friends who were gathered around for a Fourth of July celebration. However, the rocket only burned two holes in her sweater and did not mar the little girl, except for her memories of that day. The neighbors came over to apologize for the close call.