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Women’s Fund El Dorado announces $50,000 in 2013 grants

Six years ago, a group of women came together to put their philanthropic dollars where they thought they would be most needed in El Dorado County. On June 6, the Empire Ballroom at the Wedgewood Sequoia Mansion in Placerville was overflowing with members eager to learn the results of their awards to 2012 recipients and […]

Woman’s body found at El Dorado Hills Town Center

El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies converged on El Dorado Hills Town Center Tuesday morning after a woman’s body was found hanging in an enclosed trash area.

“It’s suspicious,” said Sgt. Jim Byers. “It’s out of the ordinary.”

Detectives will treat the case as suspicious unless they find evidence that suggests otherwise, he explained. It’s possible that the woman killed herself.

Byers described the victim as a Caucasian female but no other details about her identity were available.

Read More…

Mountain Democrat awarded General Excellence

The Mountain Democrat was chosen as the best overall newspaper among 33 others in its circulation category Saturday when the California Newspaper Publishers Association awarded it first place in the category of General Excellence.

Accepting the award at the ceremony in San Jose was Publisher Richard Esposito.

The judges’ comment said, “Strong coverage of crime news was nicely complimented by stories exploring local government policies and schools. Editorial page gets a big boost from letters to the editor. Clean layout and admirable focus on Placerville people.”

This is second time the Mountain Democrat has won first place General Excellence since Michael Raffety has been editor, winning in 1996. The Mountain Democrat won second place in that category in 1981 when Ursula Smith was editor and Raffety was city editor.

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Mittelman sentencing continued

The sentencing of convicted killer Steven Howard Mittelman was continued last week. Mittelman, 56, of El Dorado Hills, was found guilty in September of fatally shooting his ex-wife, Valerie Rita Mittelman, in their apartment on the evening of June 17, 2010. Mittelman, who is facing 50 years to life in prison, had been set for […]

Mittelman convicted of first-degree murder

Steven Howard Mittelman was convicted of the June 2010 first-degree murder of ex-wife Valerie Rita Mittelman Thursday morning, less than 24 hours after jurors began their deliberations. A jury of six men and six women found Mittelman, 56, guilty of murdering his ex with a single gunshot to the head on the evening of June […]

Mittelman murder trial: Ex-wife’s autopsy results revealed

A litany of health problems threatened a premature end to the life of Valerie Rita Mittelman. But it was a single gunshot wound to the head that ultimately killed the 63-year-old El Dorado Hills woman on June 17, 2010. El Dorado County jurors Tuesday learned that Valerie Mittelman suffered only one injury on the evening […]

Mittelman trial: Jury sees squad car videotape

While handcuffed and detained in the back of a patrol car parked outside of his El Dorado Hills apartment, Steven Howard Mittelman watched El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies investigate the reported suicide of his ex-wife on the evening of June 17, 2010. It was earlier that night when Mittelman dialed 911 and frantically told an […]

Trial begins for El Dorado Hills man in ex-wife’s death

Steven Howard Mittelman, according to prosecutors, had too many women in his life. In addition to sharing a small El Dorado Hills apartment with his wife, Gale Mittelman, 56, also lived with his ex-wife, 63-year-old Valerie Rita Mittelman. But Mittelman also had a blossoming relationship with a third woman — one prosecutors say he kept […]

Mittelman: Murder trial to start soon

The first-degree murder trial of an El Dorado Hills man accused of gunning down his ex-wife is on schedule to begin at the end of this month. During a brief pretrial hearing in an El Dorado County Superior courtroom Friday, attorneys confirmed that jury selection for the Steven Howard Mittelman murder trial should start Aug. […]

Jury selection for Colver trial begins

Jury selection for the trial of suspected murderer Steven Paul Colver began Tuesday morning in Placerville’s Main Street Courthouse. Jury selection is expected to last two days, a court official told the Mountain Democrat. Colver, 21, is accused of helping his former girlfriend plan and execute the murder of her mother in 2009. Colver’s former […]

Health Expo Spectacular to help at-risk teens

Is your child at risk of suicide? Family health depends on the health of all of its members and to help community members deal with family health issues, the Suicide Prevention Education Action Resources (SPEAR) is sponsoring a Health Expo and Awareness Spectacular at the Holiday Inn Express in Town Center, El Dorado Hills, on […]

Trial for EDH murder suspect delayed

The beginning of the trial of the El Dorado Hills man accused of shooting his ex-wife was delayed by one week, the El Dorado County Superior Court announced Friday. Steven Howard Mittelman, 55, is charged with the first-degree murder of 63-year-old Valerie Rita Mittelman, his ex-wife. The victim’s body was discovered by sheriff’s deputies on […]

Hearing delayed in murder case

Several months removed from his last public court appearance, suspected murderer Steven Paul Colver’s latest readiness conference was delayed yet again Friday morning. Colver, 20, is accused of killing the mother of Tylar Marie Witt, his former girlfriend, in 2009. Friday’s affair had been set as a readiness and settlement conference for Colver’s upcoming trial, […]

Trial date delayed in Witt/Colver murder case

The start of suspected killer Steven Colver’s trial was delayed by several months Friday morning. Colver, 20, is accused of killing El Dorado Hills woman Joanne Witt in June 2009. Witt was the mother of his former lover, Tylar. Citing the recent receipt of 37,000 pages of discovery, defense attorney Dain Weiner filed a motion […]

Details emerge in Mittelman murder case

A trio of law enforcement professionals took the stand Wednesday in an El Dorado County courtroom to offer new information in the case of suspected killer Steven Howard Mittelman. Mittelman, 55, is charged with the first degree murder of ex-wife Valerie Rita Mittelman, 63. The victim’s body was discovered by sheriff’s deputies in the El […]

El Dorado Hills murder: Colver trial set

Democrat staff writer The trial of suspected killer Steven Paul Colver is set to begin Feb. 15, 2011, attorneys announced Friday. Colver, 20, is accused of killing El Dorado Hills woman Joanne Witt in June 2009. Witt was the mother of his former lover, Tylar. Prosecutors think Colver slashed Joanne WittÕs throat and stabbed her […]

Community partners work to end mental health stigma

“One out of four families will experience mental health challenges. My family is one,” narrates actress Glenn Close at the start of the documentary “A New State of Mind: Ending the Stigma of Mental Illness,” which was shown to residents at the El Dorado Hills Community Services District pavilion earlier this year in an effort to […]

Heard over the back fence: Authors coming to Main Library

GO FOR IT! The “Bits and Pieces” magazine offered the following thought: “Either you decide to stay in the shallow end of the pool or you go out in the ocean.” — Christopher Reeves, actor LOCAL AUTHORS’ PRESENTATIONS: On Saturday, Sept. 6, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Placerville Library, 345 Fair Lane, the following authors […]

SWAT responds to barricaded EDH man

A man threatening suicide shut down El Dorado Hills Boulevard in El Dorado Hills after SWAT responded to his threats of shooting anyone who approached his apartment. Deputies were following up on a child molestation investigation involving Eric Hatfield Jr., 37, who was accused of molesting an underage female acquaintance, a press release from the […]

July 11, 2014 | Posted in News | Tagged ,

PTSD: Resources available for vets

This final segment of a three-part series is in recognition of June as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Month. PTSD affects an estimated 7 percent of the general U.S. population at some time in their lives, but this series focuses on PTSD victims in the military. Read part 1 here, and part 2 here. Ursula […]

Black-tie gala to support Fregoso Foundation

In this season of thanks-giving, what better way to show military veterans that their friends and neighbors honor them for their service than by attending the Roaring ’20s-themed Warriors in Black Tie Inaugural Ball, a fundraiser set for Saturday, Nov. 23 in Sacramento presented by the El Dorado Hills-based Fregoso Foundation. Max and Kelly Fregoso […]

Getting to know the authors

Saturday, Oct. 12 Helen Bonner Helen Bonner grew up in the foothills above Placerville, where her father had a roadside store and cabins, and where she rode her horse and swam in the rivers and lakes. She remembers writing her first story at a one-room school. As a young adult, she was a reporter for […]

Bullying workshop Aug. 1

The El Dorado Hills Community Vision Coalition is partnering with Dee DiGioia, founder of Caring and Courageous Kids, to offer a two-hour inspirational and educational bullying prevention workshop just in time to kick-off the new school year. This event will be held on Aug. 1, from 10 a.m. to noon at the El Dorado Hills […]

Heard over the back fence: Craft Fair set for Main Street

TWINKIE TIME:
 Why wasn’t July 15 declared as a national holiday? Twinkies returned to the grocery shelves on July 15. Hallelujah! CRAFT FAIR TIME: 
The huge annual Craft Fair will take place on Sunday, Aug. 11, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., on Historical Main Street, Placerville. Over 100 artisans will be selling their offerings. […]

Oak Ridge softball ends season

EL DORADO HILLS — In a do-or-die softball game for the final Delta River League playoff spot, St. Francis ran circles around host Oak Ridge in a lopsided, five-inning, 15-0 loss. “Sometimes you catch teams at the wrong time and they were on fire today. I mean, they hit everything. I knew we’d have to […]

Lady Trojans roll past Ponderosa

EL DORADO HILLS — Playing in the annual Breast Cancer Awareness game Thursday, the Oak Ridge Lady Trojans led from the start in a 7-1 Delta River League victory over visiting Ponderosa. “That was the best game we’ve played all year. We got our bunts down, we moved runners, we made little fielding mistakes. Even […]

Crime log: March 1-2

March 1 2:37 a.m. A suspect, Michael Tidwell, 54, who had been excluded from a business on Red Hawk Parkway in Shingle Springs allegedly returned and was cited and released for the county ordinance for trespassing. 8:45 a.m. A crime report was made regarding possible vandalism to the front door window of a residence on […]

Ehlers earns scholarship

Alison Ehlers’ success in the classroom has earned her one of the highest academic awards at California State University, Sacramento. The Placerville resident is one of four students who earned the Love of Learning scholarship. Ehlers, who recently graduated with a master’s degree in psychology, received the $500 scholarship for her academic achievements. She was in […]

Undersheriff takes aim at OT

El Dorado County Undersheriff Rich Williams spoke of the annual report, the department’s budget and more at the El Dorado County Taxpayer’s Association meeting on Feb. 11. Williams, who was to speak along with Sheriff John D’Agostini, first noted that the sheriff was ill and could not attend. He then launched into a short recap […]

Imported smog

One of the stories from 2012 that was a continuing story for the last 25 years if not longer is high smog readings in El Dorado County. The reason, of course, is because of the smog that blows in from the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento County. We are a victim of imported smog. […]

Working through tragic events

EDITOR: School and workplace shootings, adolescent abuse of prescription pills, overcrowded prisons, post-traumatic stress disorder in returning soldiers, adolescent and young adult suicides, marital discord, gang violence, dependence on medications, including alcohol and marijuana, and various addictive behaviors — the list of individual and social ills are thriving. As can be seen in our societal response […]

Heard over the back fence: Toys for Tots time again

CLOCKS HAVE APPETITES:
 Carlyn White forwarded the following “Your Laugh for Today” pun: “What does a clock do when it’s hungry? It goes back for seconds.” TOYS FOR TOTS TIME: 
Sometime in the next few weeks, the Toys for Tots barrels will be appearing at several locations. Bring an unwrapped new toy to your nearest […]

At a glance: Make a wish

It should be perfect weather to view the Perseid meteor shower on the nights of Saturday, Aug. 11 and Sunday, Aug.12. This is one of the best annual displays and can deliver a spectacular 90 meteors per hour. Get those shooting star wishes ready and enjoy the show.   Rocking dance An other great night […]

Special event to raise money for SPEAR

What: Wine and Olive Oil Tasting Event Who: Suicide Prevention Education Action Resources (SPEAR) Where: Holiday Inn Express, 4360 Town Center Drive in El Dorado Hills When: Saturday, Aug. 11 from 7 to 9 p.m. Cost: Tickets are $20 per person and $35 per couple in advance. The day of the event it’s $25 per person. Information: Call Vivian […]

Heard over the back fence: Spanish Hill history to be told

LEARN TO RELAX:
 The “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff” calendar notes the following advice: “Being more relaxed involves training yourself to respond differently to the dramas of life — turning your melodrama into a mellow-drama.” MR. PEABODY TO SPEAK ABOUT WAY-BACK: Historian and author George Peabody will discuss Spanish Hill history on Monday, July 30, […]

Heard over the back fence: Get your blood pressure checked free

ACCEPTING CONTRADICTIONS OF LIFE:
 Check out the “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff” calendar, and you will discover the following thought: “Inner peace is accomplished by understanding and accepting the inevitable contradictions of life — the pain and pleasure, success and failure, joy and sorrow, births and deaths. Problems can teach us to be gracious, humble, […]

Heard over the back fence: Drop off your e-waste and buy a book

NATURE LOVER ADVICE:
 John Chapman forwarded the following “Advice from a Heron” T-shirt statement: “Wade into life – Keep a keen lookout – Don’t be afraid to get your feet wet – Be patient – Look below the surface – Enjoy a good reed. Go Fish!” GET RID OF E-WASTE: 
Snowline Hospice informs us that […]

Heard over the back fence: Staying young

DAVEY RIDES AGAIN: For the past 35 consecutive years, Davey “Doc” Wiser has been a member of the famous Wagon Train that travels from Zephyr Cove, Nev., to Placerville. This year he was the oldest traveler. He also participated in the Studebaker Wheelbarrow Races and the Pony Express Ride. OK, Davey, what’s the secret for not […]

California Rambling: One Way to originality

It is much easier to take what’s available and popular and use it, rather than to create something personal and new. It’s particularly ambitious to do so in theater, where well-known plays and musicals are likely to succeed, whereas original work more often leads to frustration and rejection. Don’t tell that to Ingrid Laurentiis-Wilson, director […]

UPDATE: No crime in Town Center death, officials determine

El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies converged on El Dorado Hills Town Center on June 12 after a construction worker found a woman’s body hanging in an enclosed trash area. Though originally deemed suspicious — 911 calls made to the Sheriff’s Department the night before the body was discovered reported a woman screaming for help in […]

Local trauma survivor trying to save kids

Pollock Pines resident Michael Misch is talking to kids about distracted driving. The fact that he is talking at all is a miracle of sorts because Misch was involved in a horrific car crash in 2007 that left one person dead and himself confined to a wheelchair with brain and motor function injuries. The accident […]

No. 5: Witt admits matricide; Colver loses jury trial

Her love was supposed to last a lifetime. But the prospect of a lengthy prison sentence was apparently too much for Tylar Marie Witt, who took the stand against her former boyfriend during his highly-publicized murder trial. Although he maintained his innocence to the very end, El Dorado County jurors found Steven “Boston” Colver, 21, […]

Defense calls ex-wife’s slaying manslaughter

Steven Howard Mittelman always wanted to be a father. Wife Valerie, already with children from a previous relationship, was against the idea of starting a family with a husband eight years her junior. Only several years after the fact did Mittelman learn that Valerie, in 1979, had an abortion while they were still a couple. […]

Heard over the back fence: Check out the Saturday farmers market

PAROLE OFFICER’S ADVICE:
 John Chapman sent me the following T-shirt statement: “Bad Decisions Make Good Stories.” There are a lot of bad-decisions stories in newspapers. • • • PLACERVILLE FRESH:
The Farmer’s Market continues to operate on Saturday mornings from 8 a.m. to noon on Main Street at the Ivy House parking lot, Placerville. Items available include fresh […]

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News »

Jury duty scam makes the rounds

By Amanda Williams | From Page: A1

Heartbroken couple wants antiques returned

By Amanda Williams | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Kyburz Fire whips through the woods

By Amanda Williams | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Two new high school principals on the job

By El Dorado Union High School District | From Page: A3

Ted Gaines backs more drone safety legislation

Press Release | From Page: A3

Marshall Medical Center celebrated for baby care

By Marshall Medical | From Page: A3

County to buy more land for rare plants

By Chris Daley | From Page: A9

It’s wildfire season — watch for smoke

By El Dorado County Health And Human Services Agency | From Page: A9

Heard over the back fence: Rock on

By Bob Billingsley | From Page: B1

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Opinion »

The Balancing Act: Attack on a supervisor

By Larry Weitzman | From Page: A4

Belltower: Didn’t know that

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A4

Mark Shields: The trap of becoming only a congressional party

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: A5

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Letters »

Looking at more than the bottom line

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

EID planned well

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

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Sports »

El Dorado’s summer season comes to an end

By Jerry Heinzer | From Page: A6 | Gallery

NorCal team wins national title

By Julie Samrick | From Page: A6

First and goal: Honor request

By Mike Bush | From Page: A6

Roundup: July 26, 2015

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

Becker pays tribute after sprint win

By News Release | From Page: A6

Quintet tackles trio of marathons

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: A7

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Prospecting »

A good time was had by all

By Mimi Escabar | From Page: B1

‘Link-Up’ to benefit children’s grief program

By Snowline Hospice Thrift Stores | From Page: B2

Foothill dining: Take a dip

By Mccormick And Company | From Page: B2

Foothill gourmet: Cupcakes

By Donna Brown | From Page: B2

Back-to-school immunizations offered by county

By El Dorado County Health And Human Services Agency | From Page: B2

As we were: Jury duty

By Ken Deibert | From Page: B2

Capital Stage presents annual new works festival

By Capital Stage | From Page: B4

Food bank seeks early riser volunteers for Rescue route

By Food Bank Of El Dorado County | From Page: B10

Join Community Concert Association at National Night Out

By El Dorado Community Concert Association | From Page: B10

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Essentials »

Correction

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A2

News Bites

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A2

Crime Log

By Amanda Williams | From Page: A2

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Obituaries »

Richard Gonzalez

By Contributor | From Page: A2

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Comics »

New York Times

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Rubs

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A8

TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Horoscopes, Monday, July 27, 2015

By Contributor | From Page: A8

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