News

Investigators say a man fired from his construction job at a Ventura County hospital returned to the site, and stabbed one of his former supervisors.

Ventura County Sheriff’s detectives say Jason Mathers showed up at Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo just after 2 p.m. Monday, and attacked the supervisor with a knife. Co-workers took the injured man to the hospital’s ER, which was only about 100 yards away.

(Ventura County Fire Department)

One teacher and four students at a Ventura County elementary school were hurt when a huge limb from an elm tree on campus suddenly fell Monday afternoon.

It happened just after one p.m. at Topa Topa Elementary School in Ojai.

Ventura County Fire Department officials say the tree was in a playground area, and there were people around it when the limb fell without warning. One adult, and one student were seriously injured, while the other three injuries suffered lesser injuries.

Health officials on the Central and South Coasts say the Hepatitis A outbreak which has hit parts of the state hasn’t hit in our region, but they are taking some precautionary steps anyway.

(Photo courtesy CLU)

A South Coast university has sold a hilltop seminary campus it owned in Northern California, but the site will continue its tradition of being a home for faith based education.

Thousand Oaks based California Lutheran University is selling the ten acre property in Berkeley to a Muslim college. The campus was home to Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary for more than six decades. Over the summer, the seminary moved to an office building in downtown Berkeley. It reduced the seminary’s costs and allows students to be more involved in the community.

The Montecito Motor Classic brought out some very rare cars Sunday on Coast Village Road.

The event was a fundraiser for the police activities league, which puts police and children together to take part in positive activities.

It also supports the police foundation for police officer support programs.

2017 marks the 100th anniversary of the U.S. entry into World War I, which many called “The Great War.” An estimated 16 million people died over a four year period.

Time has caught up with those who fought in World War I.  They are all gone. And, the same thing is happening to their children, who are now in their late 80’s and 90’s.  A Ventura County college class studying World War I is getting some of those stories from some of the surviving relatives.

Photo by Santa Barbara Public Library System

Libraries on the South and Central Coasts are part of a national campaign this week to get people to vote.

Tuesday is National Voter Registration Day. Local libraries are encouraging community members to register to vote. Santa Barbara Librarian Jen Lemberger says the Central Library and all of the library system branches will be staffed with English and Spanish-speaking volunteers tomorrow to help people register.

Authorities are trying to figure out what led to a riot at a Central Coast prison which left one inmate dead, and a second seriously injured.

A disturbance broke out at around 11 a.m. Sunday at the California Men’s Colony East Facility. More than 150 inmates were involved in the fight at the medium security state prison near San Luis Obispo.

(Santa Barbara Fire Department photo)

Two people escaped with minor injuries when a helicopter crashed at a South Coast airport.

It happened at around 9:30 Sunday morning at Santa Barbara Airport. The small helicopter went down in a field next to one of the airport’s runways. The helicopter didn’t catch on fire when it crash, but it was heavily damaged, ending up on its side.

Federal investigators are trying to determine what led to the accident.

Photo by U.S. Air Force

A military satellite has been successfully launched from the Central Coast last night after being scrubbed last week due to a problem with the rocket booster.

The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket lifted off at 10:49 pm Saturday from Vandenberg Air Force Base. It was visible for much of the South and Central Coast.

Another mosquito on the South Coast has tested positive for West Nile Virus.

The Ventura County Environmental Health Division says it received confirmation from the California Department of Public Health that a mosquito sample collected the third week of September from the city of Simi Valley Wood Ranch Marsh tested positive for the virus. This is the second mosquito sample collected this year from Ventura County to test positive for West Nile. One bird also tested positive for the virus in the Simi Valley area this year. More positive test results are expected.

A former Santa Barbara County winemaker has been sentenced to eight years in prison after pleading guilty to embezzlement, and tax fraud.

Santa Barbara County prosecutors say Christian Garvin stole money from his employer, Oreana Winery, over a seven year period. They say Garvin, who was also the winery’s manager, set up a separate account with a name similar to Oreana, and diverted some checks to it.

In addition to the prison sentence, Garvin was ordered to pay a million dollars in restitution and $1.7 million dollars in fines.

A blaze which gutted a South Coast laundromat is now being called suspicious in nature.

The early Monday morning blaze on the 1900 block of De La Vina Street caused an estimated half million dollars in damage, including $300,000 to the building and $200,000 to the contents.

Flames were shooting out of the windows of the laundromat when firefighters arrived, but they were able to keep it from spreading to neighboring businesses. No one was hurt.

A community leader in Ventura County detained on immigration charges is now free on bond.

Luis Lopez-Diaz was taken into custody August 29th after Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents found him while looking for someone else at an Oxnard apartment complex. ICE officials say when agents questioned Lopez-Diaz, they discovered he didn’t have legal status in the U.S., and that he had been deported from the U.S. five times in the past.

(ULA photo)

A postponed launch of a military satellite from the Central Coast has been rescheduled for Saturday night.

A South Coast community is now a sanctuary city for bees.

The City of Santa Barbara is the latest to step up to become part of an awareness campaign for the key pollinators called “Bee City, USA.”

All Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Deputies have been carrying a special nasal spray to help save the lives of drug overdose victims.

Recently, in response to a Goleta man who was experiencing an overdose, a Narcan nasal device was used.

A Santa Barbara County man died in an industrial accident on a vineyard.

It happened just before noon Thursday, on the 2300 block of Sweeney Road in the Lompoc area.

Adan Villa of Lompoc was in the cab of a pickup truck with a trailer while a forklift was being loaded onto the trailer. The truck and trailer began to slide.

When the 60 year old man tried to escape from the cab, he was pinned between the truck and trailer, and fatally injured.

Prosecutors say a Ventura County doctor is headed to jail for selling drugs to people who didn’t legitimately need them.

The prosecutors say Dr. William Matzer admitted selling opiates to some patients from his Simi Valley office in 2013 and 2014. They noted that one of his patients died from an overdose of multiple drugs. The 58 year old doctor was sentenced to 270 days in county jail, five years probation, and ordered to do 250 hours of community service.

Eight people have been arrested, and a ninth is being sought in connection with what Santa Barbara County prosecutors say was the theft of about $1.7 million dollars in public funds.

The Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office says the charges are the result of a months long investigation into financially irregularities discovered with Santa Barbara County’s Public Works Department.

Prosecutors say one of the eight arrested, Lynn Hogan, works for the county as a senior level accountant for the Public Works Department.

Two people were hurt during a car chase on the South Coast.

Oxnard Police tried to stop a car near Saviers Road and Channel Islands Boulevard just before 11 last night for a traffic violation, but the driver fled. The car hit speeds of 50 miles an hour in a neighborhood before it hit a parked van at Oxnard Boulevard and Date Street.

A passenger in the fleeing car suffered minor injuries, as did a child in the van. The driver then fled the scene of the collision, but the car became disabled a few blocks away, and Leopoldo Gutierrez of Oxnard was arrested.

A longtime radio sportscaster on the South Coast has died.

Barry Turnbull was a familiar voice on the air in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties for decades. He was a part of the news team at KVEN Radio in Ventura, which was one of the region’s dominant news/talk radio stations for years.

Turnbull went on to work for some Los Angeles newsradio stations.

He died unexpectedly this week. Turnbull was 60 years old.

(DRO photo)

As rescuers continue to claw through mountains of rubble in, and around Mexico City looking for survivors of this week's big quake, a Santa Barbara County based group is gearing up for a different type of relief effort.

The latest economic forecast by a South Coast university indicates the state, and nation can expect continued slow growth.

California Lutheran University’s Center for Economic Forecasting is suggesting that California will only see 2.3% growth during the next two years. That’s just slightly higher than the national forecast.

Firefighters are continuing their efforts to get containment of what’s now a 70 acre brush fire on the Central Coast.

The fire was discovered at around two p.m. Wednesday in the hills east of Nipomo. No structures have been reported damaged, but rugged terrain has made it tough for firefighters to get to parts of the fire.

Aircraft have been used to help ground crews battle the blazes. Firefighters are expected to be on the scene overnight into Thursday trying to contain the blaze.

A longtime Santa Barbara County firefighter has come out of retirement to head a Central Coast fire department.

Jerry Kuras is Lompoc’s new Fire Chief. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Kurt Latipow in May.

Kuras spent more than 30 years with the Santa Barbara County Fire department before retiring in 2011.

He started his new job this week.

It’s a parent’s nightmare.

A five year old boy is so excited to see his father that he runs into the family’s driveway as the father drives into it, striking the child. That’s what happened to Jacob Suarez of Oxnard on August 20th.  But, a newly available treatment at a revamped Ventura County hospital saved his spleen, and perhaps his life.

Photo by Emammal

The risk of tick-borne disease could increase in the future. South Coast researchers are finding that wildlife loss and climate change can cause the number of ticks to rise dramatically.

UC Santa Barbara biologists conducted a study in Kenya and found that the experiment plot where they excluded the largest animals also experienced the largest increase in the number of ticks. Hillary Young, an associate professor in UCSB’s Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, says that was exacerbated in warmer and drier climates.

A Ventura County man will spend the rest of his life behind bars after being convicted of molesting young girls, including some he was trying to keep in his home as foster children.

Prosecutors say Thomas Bork had been molesting children since the 1970’s, and continued it as he moved around the state over the decades.

The Camarillo man was finally arrested in 2010. The 69 year old man was convicted of more than a half dozen molestation counts, and sentenced to 124 years behind bars.

A man convicted of killing a television executive after some key evidence in the case was found in a Ventura County storage locker has been sentenced to 11 years in prison.

John Creech was convicted of the 2012 slaying of Gavin Smith. The 20th Century Fox executive was last seen alive in Agoura Hills. In 2013, Smith’s car was found in a Simi Valley storage locker linked to Creech. But, it wasn’t until 2014 that Smith’s body was discovered by a hiker in the desert near Palmdale.

Pages