Heard over the back fence: Free Santa pictures at Snowline’s El Dorado Rd. store

 Thanks to John Chapman, the following T-shirt statement is offered: “I WELCOME CHANGE as long as nothing is altered or different.” • • • SANTA IS ON THE WAY:
 We received late information that Santa will be at the Snowline Hospice Thrift Store, located just off Highway 50 on El Dorado Road, Placerville. Santa […]

Governor directs administration to cut costs

SACRAMENTO – Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. last week issued an Executive Order directing the California Department of Finance to incorporate common-sense program-evaluation methods into the budgeting process, in order to fund programs based on their necessity and effectiveness. The order’s goal is to cut costs and increase efficiency in this and future state budgets. […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 3 Replies

Dumont’s sister testifies

Renee Romanko heard three gunshots. Seconds later, she came face-to-face with Morris Greenberg. “He said, ‘Your (expletive) brother is dead,’” Romanko tearfully told jurors Tuesday. Greenberg, 40, is accused of gunning down 26-year-old Anthony Dumont on July 20, 2008. Earlier that morning, Dumont, Romanko and her husband met at Greenberg’s foreclosed Somerset home to help Dumont’s girlfriend […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Cal Fire offers disaster planning tips

“This most recent wind event which caused more than a dozen fires in both Amador and El Dorado counties found many people without power for three or more days. Those who were prepared did well but those who did not prepare had a far more difficult time,” said  Unit Chief Kelly Keenan of the Amador-El Dorado Unit of […]

December 30, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Cargo not for canines

Last month 56-year-old Lynn Jones of Nevada was fired for refusing to load an emaciated dog into a plane’s cargo area. This week Airport Terminal Services President Sally Leible offered the big-hearted baggage handler her job back, along with back pay and an apology. She told the Associated Press that Jones “was trying to protect […]

The Christmas parade was magical

The annual Hangtown Christmas Parade on Sunday, Dec. 4, was full of magical moments. Many entries took a cue from the theme “Believe in the Magic” and featured magicians, top hats and doves flying out of a giant top hat. The magic extended to the weather with a clear, sunny day providing a perfect backdrop […]

December 09, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Area veterans honor 70th Pearl Harbor Day

At 9:55 Wednesday morning, veterans in El Dorado County opened a ceremony in memory of “all the military and civilian personnel serving on the Island of Oahu on 7 December, 1941.” Nearly 100 veterans and family members gathered at the Veterans Memorial Building on Placerville Drive to pay their respects to those who perished and […]

Rubicon Trail improvements draft EIS ready

A draft environmental impact statement that analyzes Rubicon Trail resource improvements and issuing an easement to El Dorado County for the operation and maintenance of the road was made available for public review and comment early in December. Copies of the draft EIS are available on the Eldorado National Forest Website at fs.fed.us/r5/eldorado and by contacting the Eldorado […]

Fire razes Green St. home

Two loud explosions were heard by neighbors who came out of their homes to see a house at 874 Green St. in Placerville fully engulfed in flames Wednesday afternoon. A 26-year-old woman who was at the home alone with the family’s two dogs managed to escape with the pets, one of which wandered lost and […]

Cal Dept. of Mental Health to change to hospital dept.

SACRAMENTO – California Department of Mental Health (DMH) announced Dec. 7 its blueprint to establish the new Department of State Hospitals (DSH) and reforms to the DMH structure designed to improve the mental hospital system in California. “We are making the changes that are long overdue,” said DMH Acting Director, Cliff Allenby. “Earlier this year, […]

School honors Keegan’s memory

EL DORADO HILLS — Keegan Swinney loved scary movie night with his family, was always eager for a snack at school (even gluten-free crackers) and had an infectious smile. These memories and so much more were shared at the memorial service held for the 10-year-old Tuesday afternoon at Silva Valley Elementary in El Dorado Hills. […]

Defense: Dumont slaying in self-defense

In the opening statements of Morris Greenberg’s murder trial this week, attorneys in the case agreed on one fact: Anthony Dumont was shot and killed by the retired Burlingame police officer. Dumont, 26, was killed on July 20, 2008, while helping his girlfriend — Greenberg’s estranged wife — move out of Greenberg’s foreclosed home on […]

Burglary suspects arrested in armed incident

Two burglary suspects were arrested Tuesday evening in an incident that involved residents in the North Shingle Road area reporting a man armed with a rifle terrorizing the neighborhood. El Dorado County Sheriff’s Central Dispatch received a call of a robbery that just occurred shortly before 4 p.m. in the Sleepy Hollow residential area. A […]

December 09, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 9 Replies

Heard over the back fence: Yes, you can drive through Bethlehem

 John Chapman dropped off the following “Stay away from this person” T-shirt statement: “Even if the voices in my head aren’t real . . They have some great ideas!” • • • DRIVING THROUGH BETHLEHEM:
 Tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday, the Pollock Pines Community Church,
6361 Pony Express Trail, Pollock Pines, is presenting the drive-through presentation of […]

Poor Red’s raided; later reopened

Poor Red’s Bar-B-Q restaurant in El Dorado was closed Tuesday for “unexpected maintenance,” according to a hand-written note taped to the door. Agents and officers of the California Highway Patrol and the State Board of Equalization were conducting operations inside the building but would not comment on what or for whom they were looking. The […]

December 09, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 20 Replies

Amber Alert canceled; kids found safe

A statewide Amber Alert was called off Monday night after El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies found three missing West Sacramento children safe. Dmitriy Gerasimov, 30, is accused of taking three of his children — ages 7, 4 and 2 — from their West Sacramento home on Saturday night after a reported domestic dispute with his […]

Blankets for homeless sought

A 13-year-old Placerville Girl Scout is heading an effort to collect blankets for local homeless people, with the collection occurring from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, at the Wal-Mart on Missouri Flat Road in Placerville. Kayla Grissom, working on her silver award with Girl Scout Troop 1740 of Placerville, writes in a flier […]

Convicted torturer Hamlin denied parole

The El Dorado Hills attorney who terrorized his wife and children will spend at least 10 more years behind bars. The California Board of Parole Hearings denied parole for Richard Hamlin, who is currently serving his sentence at Pleasant Valley State Prison in Coalinga. Richard’s ex-wife Susan and their four children strongly opposed his parole. In […]

Greenberg trial delayed: Judge ill

Opening statements in the first-degree murder trial of Morris Greenberg were set to be delivered Tuesday morning. But after three years and numerous delays, friends and family members of the man allegedly gunned down by Greenberg were forced to wait one more day. Greenberg, 40, is accused of fatally shooting 26-year-old Anthony Dumont in 2008. […]

Council members’ ‘neighborhood chats’ bring fresh ideas

What do you like about Placerville? What don’t you like about it? Those were two of the six questions designed to spark discussion at two community gatherings sponsored by the city of Placerville. At Tuesday’s gathering at Town Hall in Placerville, about 50 people showed up to talk with City Council members and city staff […]

Spitting shopper sent to slammer

A man accused of harassing shoppers and spitting on a Placerville police officer remains in jail on more than $1 million bail. On the evening of Nov. 29 Placerville police officers responded to Placerville’s Creek View Mini Mart on Broadway after receiving reports that an agitated, shoeless man was accosting store patrons, said Placerville Police […]

December 07, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Heard over the back fence: Saturday holiday dinner in El Dorado

 On Thanksgiving Day John Chapman gave me the following T-shirt statement: “We interrupt this marriage to bring you Football Season.” You guessed it — we were watching football. • • • EL DORADO CHRISTMAS DINNER: 
El Dorado Community Hall is having its annual Christmas dinner on Saturday, Dec. 10. Social hour starts at 5:30 p.m., […]

Dead body found by burned house

GEORGETOWN — An unidentified man was found dead outside of a burned dwelling in Georgetown, authorities said. On the afternoon of Nov. 29, the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department was contacted regarding a reported death at a residential structure fire at 1925 Mameluke Hill Road in Georgetown. Sheriff’s Lt. Bryan Golmitz said a neighbor noticed […]

December 07, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

PG&E’s Winter Gas Savings program launched

PG&E announced the launch of its annual Winter Gas Savings program, which gives eligible residential and business customers an automatic bill credit when they reduce their natural gas usage over the next two months compared to the previous three winters. Last winter, some 2.7 million customers earned bill credits totaling $70 million. Customers who conserve […]

December 19, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Many forest roads, trails closed due to downed trees

Many roads and trails throughout the Eldorado National Forest are blocked by trees last week’s winds blew over. U.S. Forest Service personnel and visitors are reporting that many roads and trails within the Eldorado National Forest are not passable due to trees that fell during the recent high winds. As a result, travelers may find […]

Wind-whipped fires contained

CAMINO –  All the fires that began during last Wednesday’s “wind event” have been contained and controlled but Cal Fire was closely watching a severe wind storm that had been predicted for Tuesday, Dec. 6. “We have prepositioned additional Cal Fire equipment (10 fire engines and four Type 1 handcrews from across the state) in strategic […]

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Between neighbors

I have a neighbor who has a chocolate Lab. Twice now, their dog has evaded their electric fence and come at me from 20 to 30 yards. Both times I was about to go on a run.  I love dogs and have had dogs all my life, but this one charges toward me while baring […]

Drunken argument leads to shooting

A Mosquito man was taken to an area hospital Saturday after being shot during a drunken argument, authorities said. El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies responded to a reported shooting on the 2100 block of Rex Court in Mosquito at 6:20 p.m. Saturday. Upon arriving at the scene, deputies found two men suffering from various injuries. […]

Homicide suspect still in hospital

The Placerville man suspected of shooting his step-father remains in the hospital, El Dorado County sheriff’s officials confirmed. Sheriff’s Lt. Bryan Golmitz told the Mountain Democrat that the suspect in Sunday’s shooting suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head and as of Monday morning, was still receiving treatment at an area hospital. He is […]

Vern the guide dog living the good life

Vern, the good natured guide dog who was threatened with eviction when his owner, Randy Cummings, retired him and got a new guide dog, is living the good life — and he’s still in the Cameron Park home where he’s lived for the past three years. When the Mountain Democrat story about Vern’s impending eviction […]

Greenberg trial jury selected

For Anthony Dumont’s friends and family, the wait is just about over. It has been more than three years since Dumont, 26, was shot and killed at the Somerset residence of Morris Greenberg. Greenberg, 40, has since been charged with Dumont’s first-degree murder. After years of delays and ever-changing starting dates, Greenberg’s trial is set […]

Gov. picks local woman for labor post

Brigid Hanson of Cameron Park started her new job last week as the assistant secretary for Labor Relations at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. A 25-year veteran of the state, most recently serving as the agency’s associate director, Human Resources, director of Administration in the Division of Juvenile Justice, Hanson was appointed to […]

Home brew fever: Double toil and trouble for beer with bubbles

It’s been two months and I’ve made almost 4,000 ounces of beer. It all began when my friends Peter and Ann McQuillen — who happen to be home brewers —  were giving away some of their beer making equipment, a bit of hardware they referred to as a “mash tun.” With no real idea what a mash […]

Sheriff’s Dept. offers holiday safety tips

For many, the holidays are a special time of year. But the season’s hustle and bustle can often open the door to easy pickings for con artists and thieves, the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department warns. Officials have issued several safety reminders to help ensure county residents have a safe and happy holiday season. Around […]

Man arrested in Sunday shooting

UPDATE: Under arrest is Richard “Ricky” Petroski, reportedly the stepson of the homicide victim, tentatively identified as 69-year-old John Malia. The fatal shooting occurred at 3875 Deer Canyon Road off Pioneer Hill Road, which runs off Newtown Road. A suspect in a Sunday morning shooting was taken into custody a couple of hours later, and […]

December 05, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 49 Replies

State DOJ releases homicide stats

SACRAMENTO — The California Department of Justice Dec. 2 released the annual “Homicide in California 2010″ report showing the rate of homicide crimes per 100,000 in population decreased 7.8 percent from 2009. The total number of homicides declined from 1,970 in 2009 to 1,809 in 2010. The homicide clearance rate, or percentage of reported crimes […]

Heard over the back fence: Learn about wildlife phsyiology

 Thanks to John Chapman, the following T-shirt statement is available: “Advice from a Firefly: Be full of bright ideas * Pulse with excitement * Have a healthy glow * Delight in summer evenings * Keep a childlike sense of wonder * Set a shining example * Lighten up!” • • • LOCAL WILDLIFE INFORMATION:
 The […]

GDPUD retirement cost reduced for 2nd year

GEORGETOWN — Preparation of an independent audit of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District’s financial statements has revealed the retirement benefit costs paid by the local utility district have declined two years running. Moss, Levy and Hartzheim, Certified Public Accountants, audited the GDPUD financial statements and the results show that the cost to the district […]

December 07, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Study: Boomers shifting priorities, redefining aging

ORLANDO, Fla. – Fundamental shifts in the nation’s largest demographic group are leading to perceptual changes that will influence the market for Boomer-targeted products and services. That’s the word from Steve French, managing partner at the Natural Marketing Institute, who addressed active-aging professionals at the 10th annual International Council on Active Aging conference here. As […]

EDH man guilty of embezzling

A former El Dorado Hills man was convicted last week of bank and mail fraud by federal jurors. Thomas Tanke, 67, was found guilty of two counts of mail fraud and five counts of bank fraud on Nov. 22. Tanke, while living in El Dorado Hills, was vice president of Rancho Cordova-based Azteca Construction Inc. from […]

Hangman’s buildings likely to stay for now

Late Tuesday, the Mountain Democrat learned that Placervile city officials had met with representatives from the Saunders Co. in an effort to clarify positions on what to do with the buildings at 301 and 305 Main Str. Locally, the structures are known as the Herrick Building and the Hangman’s Tree Building. An article published earlier […]

December 02, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 7 Replies

Suspected rapist linked to Staten Island

An El Dorado Hills man who has spent more than a year on El Dorado County’s “wanted list” is thought to be hiding in a New York borough, according to the U.S. Marshals Service. Pasquale “Patrick” Senatore, 45, is accused of sexually assaulting a minor under the age of 14 over a three-month span in 1998, […]

December 02, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Trees fall on Pollock Pines homes

POLLOCK PINES — Several Pollock Pines residences were crushed Thursday morning when strong winds uprooted massive tress. At approximately 8:15 a.m., a 30-foot sequoia tree fell on two dwellings at 2656 Sanders Drive in Pollock Pines. El Dorado County Fire Capt. Paul Dutch told the Mountain Democrat that the sequoia was uprooted, crashed down onto […]

December 02, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Hunter’s Place grows on Grace ranch

Hunter’s Place, the special-needs friendly playground on the Grace Foundation ranch, will get more and better playground equipment over the next couple of weeks, weather permitting, thanks to generous donors and a family brave enough to talk about the tragic accident that took their son a year ago. On a stormy Sunday morning in November […]

Suspicious box forces church evacuation

CAMINO — A Camino church was evacuated Tuesday after a suspicious package was found on church grounds. Staff at the Seventh-day Adventist Church at 3520 Carson Road first noticed the suspicious package at around 11 a.m. Tuesday. The box, which featured no markings and was taped up, was found in front of the church’s office. […]