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Horse stolen, killed by truck in Rescue

A horse was stolen and later killed Wednesday night after being hit by a truck in Rescue. Scarlett, a 6-year-0ld quarter horse, was stolen from a pasture next to Rescue Elementary School on Green Valley Road at about 11 p.m. on April 22, owner Katie Holt of Placerville said. Two 17-year-old girls were returning home […]

Heard over the back fence: Learn to skateboard

STUDENT PRESENTATIONS: The Clarksville Region Historical Society will meet on April 29 at 6:30 p.m. at the El Dorado Hills Library, 7455 Silva Valley Parkway. Students of Mr. Hodgin’s Oak Ridge High School’s history class will offer history presentations. The public is invited. DANCE NIGHT AT SHINGLE SPRINGS: On Friday, May 1, you can enjoy […]

Seven arrested in connection with mail thefts

Seven people were arrested on April 16 and 21 in connection with mail thefts in the county. Two warrants were served in the greater San Joaquin Valley area on April 16, a press release from the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office announced. Deputies with the Special Enforcement Detail located stolen mail packages, checks, bank account […]

Man injured after baseball bat attack

A man suffered severe injuries after a suspect attacked him with a baseball bat Wednesday evening. Deputies responded to the 5800 block of Mother Lode Drive west of Placerville near the intersection with Pleasant Valley Road at about 5:50 p.m., a press release stated. An uninvolved caller reported an adult male had just hit another […]

Barton Auxiliary donates $220,000 for new mammography machine

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — It was a festive and lively event at the Barton Auxiliary’s annual volunteer appreciation luncheon on Monday, April 13. More than 80 volunteers from the hospital, gift shop and The Attic Thrift Store attended and were recognized for their service and gifts. Auxiliary volunteers donated nearly 28,000 hours in 2014. Based […]

Groundwater bill to give local water agencies increased flexibility

SACRAMENTO — On April 14, AB 453, authored by Assemblyman Frank Bigelow (R-O’Neals), advanced out of the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife committee with bipartisan support. AB 453 would authorize a local agency to amend their existing groundwater management plans, so that it may serve as an alternative plan under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. […]

Purse snatched on Newtown Road

On April 20 at about 11:57 a.m., El Dorado County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a reported robbery in the 3000 block of Newtown Road. A female caller stated she was attacked by two subjects who pushed her to the ground and stole her purse. The suspects left in a late 1960s to early 1970s, two-door […]

Denny’s waitress saves man during heart attack

Denny’s waitress. Substitute teacher. Lifesaver.

Chandra Sousa, 26, of Camino, added that last identifier on March 31 at about 6:30 p.m. when she saved Jim LaBerge’s life after he suffered a heart attack.

The 72-year-old Pollock Pines man went out to his car to get the agenda for the Hangtown Kennel Club board meeting. He returned inside and had just put the agenda on the table in the back banquet room of the Placerville Denny’s, he said.

“That’s the last thing I remember.”

Sousa, who was typing in an order at the register, remembers about 10 people being in the banquet room and one woman came out and yelled for someone to call 911. She also asked if anyone knew CPR, Sousa recalled. Despite a fair …

Fight involving transient reported

A transient man was arrested following a report of a fight on April 19. El Dorado County Sheriff’s deputies responded to Halyard Lane and Halyard Court in Diamond Springs at 3:34 p.m., a press release stated. The caller told dispatch a fight was between two males with a female trying to intervene, and the caller […]

Grand Jury slams BOS over HR Dept.

Under the title “Board of Supervisors Neglects Human Resources,” the El Dorado County Grand Jury Report 2014-2015 rakes the board and the county’s Human Resources department over the coals. By way of introduction to a list of 16 “Findings,” the report states: “Failure to strengthen the Human Resources Department has led to personnel issues being […]

Court ruling to have little to no impact locally

Monday’s decision by the 4th District Court of Appeal regarding tiered water rates may make it harder for some water agencies to reach their conservation goals. At issue is a finding by the court that San Juan Capistrano’s tiered water rate structure was unconstitutional because it charged more for water than it cost the city to provide […]

Debris burning advice

Debris burning is a common tool used to dispose of vegetation when creating and maintaining defensible space. Since January, the Amador-El Dorado Unit of Cal Fire (AEU), the U.S. Forest Service and local government cooperators have responded to over 25 escaped debris burns. “Don’t let recent rains give you a false sense of security while […]

Sharing stories with music

In 2005, Sarah Vienna Berchtold, from Placerville, walked into the Children’s Hospital in Brasov, Romania. The abandoned children she saw had been lying in cribs unattended for many hours with seven layers of urine-soaked rags covering them. There were no diapers; there wasn’t enough staff to attend to the hundreds of children under the age […]

‘Nerves of steel’ to fix county budget

“We’d have to have nerves of steel and a resolve we’ve not seen before,” District 4 Supervisor Michael Ranalli said after seeing a proposal that suggests deep cuts are necessary to balance the county’s next budget. “If we cut it all this year, it will result in havoc,” Shiva Frentzen, supervisor for District 2, noted. […]

Family wants murderer kept in jail

Three years ago, Mike and Lynn Tracy of Garden Valley were successful in keeping William Ray Hall Jr. in jail at his first parole hearing. On June 9, they aim to do it again. In March 1996, Hall killed his girlfriend — Lynn’s daughter — Toni Parcell. He strangled her, threw her in the back of […]

Supes see bleak future in budget

El Dorado County Supervisors got the math equivalent of last year’s “Ice Bucket” challenge on April 15. It came as an introduction to the annual budget process that will be in full swing over the next several months. Chief Administrative Officer Pamela Knorr wielded the virtual bucket. Knorr is charged with preparing the county’s budget […]

Heard over the back fence: Toddler time fun

CAMINO CLEAN-UP DAY: Camino Clean-up Day is April 25 from 8 a.m.-noon at the following location: Sierra Pacific parking lot on Snows Road (off of Carson Road). Watch for the signs. Snowline Hospice will be there with their truck to accept e-waste and gently used donations. To volunteer or inquire about vehicle abatement, please call […]

Gov. Brown decries court of appeal decision

A decision on Monday by the 4th District Court of Appeal regarding tiered water rates drew a rebuke from Gov. Jerry Brown and may throw a monkey wrench into efforts to mandate water conservation in the state. At issue is a finding by the court that San Juan Capistrano’s tiered water rate structure was unconstitutional because […]

Water rights under pressure

A press release from the State Water Resources Control Board on April 3 warned that water right holders, including some senior right holders, are likely to be curtailed soon within key watersheds in the state. The warning, to holders of more than 36,000 water rights across the state, is designed to give water right holders advance notice to […]

Roth receives new court date

In a short Monday hearing, a man accused of killing his wife received a new court date. Roy Roth, 51, appeared in court with his attorney Mark Ralphs for a hearing lasting only a handful of minutes. Ralphs told Judge Kenneth J. Melikian that he had not yet received any discovery, requesting the hearing be […]

GDPUD declares Stage 3 drought

With Stumpy Meadows Reservoir at 12,350 acre-feet last week, the Board of Directors of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District adopted a resolution declaring a Stage 3 Drought at its April 14 meeting. Normally the 20,000 acre-foot reservoir would be spilling at this time of year. The resolution mandates reducing potable and untreated water demand between 25 to 35 percent. However, […]

New conservation targets set

After receiving over 250 comments regarding new conservation targets for water agencies, on Saturday the State Water Board issued a new regulatory framework for implementing the statewide goal of reducing water use by 25 percent. Instead of four tiers of conservation varying from 10 to 25 percent, the new framework includes nine tiers with conservation […]

King Fire area to open to public again

The U.S. Forest Service announced that the national forest lands in the King Fire area will be open to the public again beginning Saturday, April 25, in conjunction with the general opening of fishing season. However, the public is cautioned that parts of the fire area are still hazardous and will continue to be for years. […]

New ride for Placerville Police Department

Faster than a speeding bullet; more silent than a snail creeping through your garden — it’s the 2013 Zero DS ZF11.4 electric motorcycle acquired by the Placerville Police Department.

Placerville Police Sgt. Dan Maciel showed off the new bike to Placerville City Council on March 10.

“It’s more nimble than the Harley; easier to turn on our narrow streets,” said Maciel. “It’s very powerful at freeway speeds and half the weight of the Harley. “The PD also has a conventional Harley-Davidson police motorcycle.”

Updated sign ordinance perused by planners

Members of the El Dorado County Planning Commission took more than five hours to review and take testimony on a sign ordinance at their March 26 meeting. An updated version of an ordinance that hasn’t been changed since 1980, the new version covers general sign requirements, permanent signs, temporary signs, community sign programs, sign development and design standards, permit […]

Public hearing for bus route changes May 7

As a part of the current public comment period associated with the Proposed Bus Route Service Changes, El Dorado Transit will hold a public hearing to receive comments at the regularly scheduled Board of Directors meeting on Thursday, May 7 at 1 p.m. The El Dorado Transit meeting will be held in the Board of […]

Heard over the back fence: Senior citizen prom

HOW ABOUT SOME SPAGHETTI? The $3 senior lunch on April 23 is: spaghetti with meatballs, Brussels sprouts, half banana, French bread and milk. This lunch is for seniors, 60 years and older. For location of nearest senior lunch site for you call 530-621-6110. TACO FEED FUNDRAISER: On Saturday, April 25 a Taco Feed Fundraiser will take […]

Expanding your horizons: Take flight with local pilot programs

In the passenger seat of a Cessna Turbo Skylane RG, piloted by a skilled pilot like Dick Wampach, the world unfolds beneath me, revealing its secrets and expanding my perspective of the area I know so well from the ground. Just about any kid — and many adults — is going to want to put down the video game and pick up a log book after seeing hidden ponds sparkling under the canopy of pines, the breadth of the foothills and rapid-filled rivers twisting beneath them. That’s the idea behind the Placerville Experimental Aircraft Association’s Young Eagle Flight Plan Program.

Second time’s a charm for Water and Power Authority MOU

A memorandum of understanding voted down at the April 8 meeting of the El Dorado Water and Power Authority was back on the table at a special meeting held April 15. This time, however, it garnered enough votes to pass. El Dorado County Supervisor Brian Veerkamp, who is also chairman of EDWPA, opened the meeting by saying […]

Wildfire fought overnight on Sand Ridge Road

Cal Fire fought a fire in the Sand Ridge Road area Thursday afternoon into Friday evening, reaching 100 percent containment at 14 acres burned by 5 p.m. April 17. Crews were dispatched at about 2 p.m. April 16, Cal Fire’s Brice Bennett told the Mountain Democrat. The fire, dubbed the Gold Fire, was initially reported […]

Woman hits ex-boyfriend with car

A woman allegedly hit her ex-boyfriend with a car in a hit-and-run in Placerville Thursday afternoon. El Dorado County Sheriff’s deputies and CHP officers responded to 2080 Broadway near Texerna Court at about 2 p.m., an EDSO press release stated, for a report of a hit-and-run against a pedestrian. There, they found an adult male […]

Structure fire burns deck, attic

A small structure fire was quickly extinguished Thursday in Pollock Pines. El Dorado County Fire responded to 5272 Gilmore Road at 2:38 p.m., Division Chief Paul Lohan said, to a report of a structure fire. Responding units found the deck of a house on fire, with an elderly man inside, Lohan said. The fire extended […]

DUI crash leads to car chase

An alleged DUI crash led to a chase on April 16 in Placerville. El Dorado County Sheriff’s Deputy Tim Peterson was flagged down by a motorist at about 6 p.m., a press release stated. The motorist reported a female was driving a white SUV the wrong way on Missouri Flat Road. Peterson found the SUV […]

October trial set for alleged King Fire arsonist

A trial for the man who allegedly started the King Fire was scheduled in a short Friday hearing. Wayne Huntsman, 37, appeared briefly in court, hiding his face behind court papers, with his attorney, Bob Banning, to set a schedule for trial. Banning, prosecutor James Clinchard and Judge Kenneth J. Melikian met in chambers prior […]

Tribe’s gun range shifts to ‘members only’

The Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians will build a gun range, as planned, but its size and scope will be focused on members only. According to a press release from the tribe Friday, the tribe decided to develop a small gun range that will be open only to tribal members and their guests. During […]

Heard over the back fence: Wildflower walk

SPANISH STORYTIME: Children, ages 2 to 5 and their adults, are invited for evening stories, songs and crafts, in Spanish and English, every second Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at the El Dorado County Library, 345 Fair Lane in Placerville. Kids can wear their jammies. CHILDREN’S STORYTIME: The Children’s Storytime class is designed […]

Lake Tahoe Plan wins national excellence award

LAKE TAHOE, STATELINE, NEV. — The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency’s Lake Tahoe Sustainability Action Plan is being recognized this month with a National Planning Achievement Award for Environmental Planning from the American Planning Association. The Sustainability Action Plan is one of 12 plans nationwide that will be recognized with planning excellence awards during the American […]

Georgetown wildfire contained

A wildfire burned about 5 acres in Georgetown April 15. U.S. Forest Service’s Kristi Schroeder said a smoke check near Wentworth Springs Road was reported to the USFS at 5:41 p.m. by Cal Fire, with a wildfire — dubbed the Quintette Fire — found as the cause of the smoke. Cal Fire informed the USFS […]

Pondo queen on to state competition

Ponderosa senior Tristan Ann Hunter, 18, is a finalist for California’s 35th annual Homecoming Queen title and will compete on April 19 in Anaheim. If selected, Ponderosa’s reigning homecoming queen will represent California at the national competition this summer. Approximately a dozen finalists were selected to compete out of all current high school homecoming queens […]

Harris found guilty of first-degree murder

After 40 minutes of deliberation, a jury found Colleen Harris guilty of the first-degree murder of Robert “Bob” Harris on April 15.

The five-man, seven-woman jury found Harris, 73, guilty of the 2013 murder of her then-72-year-old husband, with four firearms-related enhancements found true.

As the court clerk read the verdict at about 3:50 p.m., Harris, a 2008 El Dorado County Rose candidate, lowered her head into her hands, shielding her face from photographers while crying softly.

Defense attorney David Weiner requested the jury be polled to ensure the decision was unanimous. Each juror in turn confirmed the guilty verdict.

Closing arguments attempt to sway jury

Prosecutor Joe Alexander told the jury in the beginning of the Colleen Harris murder trial that the defendant loved her husband, Bob. “She was obsessed with him; obsessed with the idea that she was going to lose him,” he said during his closing statement Tuesday afternoon, April 14. The only conclusion, based on evidence, was […]

Geyser erupts on Main Street when service line separated

A geyser erupted on Main Street in Placerville on Tuesday, April 14 in front of the Herrick/Hangman’s Tree building at 301 and 305 Main Street. A recently installed service line separated from its connection to the main line at just after 3 p.m., and sent water shooting up over the top of the historic building, which […]

Grand Jury asks CSD to amend parcel tax

A $10 annual tax on each of the 15,500 parcels in El Dorado Hills adds up to a lot of money. Since 1983, when the El Dorado Hills Community Services District’s Board of Directors placed the voter initiative Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions Enforcement (Measure B) on the general district election ballot and it passed, Measure B […]

Conference scholarship for young writers

Five young writers (ages 16-25) will be able to attend the Mendocino Coast Writers Conference Aug. 6-8 on full scholarship. The “5-Under 25” scholarships are merit-based; no entry fee is required. Applicants, please submit an application form, writing sample and brief cover letter between now and May 15. The three-day conference takes place at the […]

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