By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
By Charles Lam
Every year, we try to pick an artistic theme that'll make our Scariest People issue as ghastly as possible—say, Dia de los Muertos, zombies or the Lincoln Club. But this year, when we saw the gargantuan, disgusting, all-chin mugshot of accused child kidnapper Victor Joseph Espinoza, the idea came immediately: Garbage Pail Kids!
Of course, we didn't figure this out until about a week before deadline, which explains why we were only able to commission such few homages to Topps' cult-classic trading cards. But to make up for our fuckup, we asked actual Garbage Pail Kids artist Joe Simko to do the honors of turning four of our Scariest nominees into grotesque, hilarious caricatures. Enjoy, and don't forget to visit our Navel Gazing blog to see who's this year's inductee into the Bob Dornan Scary OC Hall of Fame!
1. VICTOR JOSEPH ESPINOZA
It's pretty frightening what the documented gang member is accused of doing: grabbing a 10-year-old boy, hoisting the lad and sniffing him. The boy managed to break away and run to his soccer coach, who tackled and briefly held down the 425-pound man, who eventually escaped. Police caught him hiding a short distance away, and 55-year-old Victor Joseph Espinoza is now up on false imprisonment and street terrorism charges, with gang and prior-strike enhancements. But vastly more scary than all that is the balloon-sized bubble of fleshy neck fat extending from just below Espinoza's chin to his upper chest. Don't look directly at it too long, for it seems to possess strange powers to get humanity to collectively vomit. Mitigating factor: Rumor has it the flapping noise of neck fat slapping against Espinoza's chest made it easier to pick up his trail—that and his being a 425-pound fat bastard.
2. ITZCOATL OCAMPO
On Oct. 25, 2011, the same night our Scariest People 2011 issue went to press, a monster stabbed Raquel Estrada, 53, and her 34-year-old son, Juan Herrera, dozens of times, leaving their lifeless bodies on the floor of their Yorba Linda home. Authorities say the same man went on to fatally stab four homeless men—James McGillivray, Lloyd "Jimmy" Middaugh, Paulus "Dutch" Smit and John Berry—over the next few months and into 2012. Police say that man is 24-year-old Itzcoatl "Izzy" Ocampo, a discharged U.S. Marine who's now facing the death penalty. Mitigating factor: It's difficult getting scared by a guy who goes by the name Izzy.
3. KILLER ANAHEIM COPS
The world reacted with shock after Anaheim police officers shot and killed unarmed Manuel Angel Diaz—then with disbelief when they did the same to Joel Acevedo the following day. But for Anaheim residents, this was the same old song. The city's officers have left a trail of dead over the past decade, killing unarmed black men (Julian Alexander), mentally disturbed white men (Roscoe Cambridge) and a hell of a lot of Mexicans. Mitigating factor: They're still better than Huntington Beach cops.
4. BRUCE JENNINGS
The fact he made, through his Costa Mesa-based Bryco Arms, "Saturday Night Special" handguns that were involved in numerous murders in the drug-fueled craziness of the 1980s is reason enough to hate Bruce Jennings. There's also the fact these guns were so cheaply made they often malfunctioned, which left 7-year-old Brandon Maxfield in a wheelchair for life. But Jennings didn't want to go down in history just for being a walking advertisement for gun control. Instead, he figured he'd double down on notoriety—by getting busted this September in Florida for possession of child pornography. According to the cops, Jennings knew the videos were of "real children who had been sexually abused," but he "did not feel guilty" about watching the films. Mitigating Factor: He gets to meet fans of his guns in prison.
5. CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY
Where to begin with a group that teaches that people are actually "meat bodies" inhabited by extraterrestrial "thetans" who were blasted out of an ancient volcano? Or that grabbing a pair of wired-up joysticks will help you walk the Bridge to Total Freedom, passing from the abyss of pre-clarity to Operating Thetan-hood for only a few hundred thousand dollars' worth of classes? Yet despite what seems to be a never-ending supply of bad publicity, Scientology just keeps expanding. In June, the cult unveiled its first OC "Ideal Org" in Santa Ana. Problem is, many of the folks who showed up for the unpublicized grand opening were either bussed in from out of town or protesters. Also present: then-Weekly reporter Josh Dulaney, who, for his troubles, had his picture taken by a Scientologist spy. Mitigating Factor: Hail Xenu!
6. STEVE CHAVEZ LODGE
Steve Lodge has gone by Steve Lodge professionally for decades, but when he announced an Anaheim City Council run this year, he decided to use Steve Chavez Lodge. (Chavez is his birth surname.) The reason for the sudden Mexican love? Anaheim has a huge Latino electorate but no Latino council members. Activists sued to prohibit Lodge from using his newfound name for the election; they lost. But Lodge can't escape his past as a dirty Santa Ana cop who beat up a jaywalker so badly a federal jury fined him $612,000. And there was also the 2001 case in which Lodge had a man wrongfully imprisoned for murder for more than a year—until prosecutors dropped all charges Meanwhile, Lodge's campaign signs keep getting tagged with "pocho," which is Mexican Spanish for "Steve Lodge." Mitigating factor: His brother is KLAA-AM 830 morning show host Roger Lodge.
Mr. Arellano, how in the world have you figured out how evil Dr. Moreno is? He has single-handedly made the Anaheim City School District the laughing stock of Orange County. While it has five board members, Moreno controls all. However, it is surprising that anyone outside his victims would know how callous and calculating he is. Only the fools, like Julio Perez, Al Jabbar, Alejandro Gonzalez, Amin David, and others, revere the ground this parasite walks on. He is the worst board member that district has ever seen!
This article is very disappointing. The fact that you are generalizing an entire senior class and putting down a LOT of very good children for the actions of the very few, who were in fact disciplined and sent home that very day. Also, you have not checked your facts at all, that class did NOT go to Disneyland. Very unprofessional and very untrue.
Gustave A forgot to include himself at the top of the list.
Also why was Yaron Brook overlooked ? He has been misrepresenting Ayn Rand's philosophy for decades now. I'd include Leonard Peikoff in that category too except after his fourth divorce he moved
out of Irvine to Riverside.
Is that considered downward mobility ?
Want Romney judicial appointees, get ready for more of the below, sheriff joe loving judges...
Sheriff Joe Arpaio as attorney general under Romney...
I'd nominate the National Council of La Raza, MEChA, LULAC, MALDEF, the Mexican government, Mexican consulates spread throughout the country as if 7/11s, Univision, Telemundo, Cecilia Munoz, Hilda Solis, Thomas Perez, oh, and I almost forgot, Antonio Villaraigosa, excuse me, Tony Villar.
Pretty scary bunch huh? The Klan with the Tan...
James Robert Reade,Is The negative 'Draw Back' in our 'Freedom of Speech' Country, & Mr Reade..Has to Remember His Curfew....& To Be Back At "Toon Town"..at Disneyland by Closing Time.
A little something to add to the James Robert Reade file. At last night's City Council meeting he was ousted from his usual seat in the front row, after terrifying little girls who were trying to speak at the podium during public comments. Mayor Tait asked him to move to the end of the row and stop bothering the children, he refused and Tait has him removed. One of the few times I wanted to break out in song during a Council meeting. Of course the rest of is was a complete sausage factory of epic proportions, but we did get rid of Reade for one night.
Lots of decent (and easy) picks, but: #28 Dr. Jose F. Moreno? Really? Because he "is the lead plaintiff in an ACLU-filed lawsuit trying to force ward elections for Anaheim council races by crying lack of diversity; the lawsuit is so ahistorical and riddled with errors it comes off as the self-serving springboard it is for Moreno to run for a seat in 2014."
I see that what scares Gustavo Arellano is people who think that actually using the legal tools available to fight for social justice is preferable to recycling history of long-dead-and-decomposed KKK leaders. This one goes into the growing file of examples of the Weekly's petty umbrage.
@AFriendfromOxnard Tell us more...
@fretsward Great—now this idiot is back...
@anaheimloser It's a tough list to make, but their anointed Lodge is!
@GregDiamond Did you mean to write petty garbage ? Gustave is the master of garbagemouthism.
@GregDiamond Nobody cares what you think, Greg. You are an unemployed Brea lawyer who is running California's worst state senate campaign. You do nothing but spend your days and nights writing self-important blog comments. You consider yourself a political expert and THAT was your brilliant strategy to win? Or did you run merely to increase your own name ID in hopes if saving your laughable law career--the one you run out if a Brea rental?
@GregDiamond Don't you have a state senate campaign to run? That's right: you're just a pathetic loser who has nothing to offer to Orange County other than sanctimonious gasbaggery with no basis in reality. But, hey: keep getting blinded by what you think is right—the rest of us who know will continue to laugh at your stupidity.
@GustavoArellano Let's try this again, Aska. You include Dr. Jose Moreno on this list -- over, as Gericault notes below, the likes of Righeimer, not just serial killers -- because he's lead plaintiff in a lawsuit that seeks relief (implementing a ward system) that as I recall YOU NOW FAVOR, because you don't like the use of a legal theory the necessity of which you apparently still don't understand.
Your response to that is to tell me to get back to my campaign. (Hey, you guys have decent readership, I'm reaching far more people with this post during the 10 minutes it takes me to write it than I could on foot.) Rather than addressing the meat of the criticism (he's using the legal tools available for a good end, rather than retreating into historical attacks on those long dead, as you've done this year), you offer vague and conclusaory insults ("pathetic loser," "nothing to offer," "sanctimonious gasbaggery," "no basis in reality") that are difficult to swing at because THERE'S NOTHING ACTUALLY REFERENCED THERE. It's intellectually cowardice (if it's even intellectual at all.) You want to argue about these things? Just let me know where and when to show up. Proceeds to charity.
I leave it to your discerning readers to decide whether they think that I am stupid, cabrón. Maybe they can also decide why your defense of your publication's writing is continually referring to achievements long past.
@GustavoArellano @GregDiamond Gustavo.... you should admit this list is pretty "f''n weak. I know your office is in Costa Mesa , but are you even paying attention to the shit that is happening here? The "rest of us who know", think you guys at the Weekly are too busy finding the perfect $5 dollar lunch deal. Your cutting edge weekly is starting to look like a facebook page where everyone takes pictures of what they're eating.
@GregDiamond You're STILL at it? Wow, do you want to go down in OC history as a complete and utter loser? PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE have some dignity and shut the hell up!
@rotoro91 That's the thing—Pringle NEVER changed. He's always been the self-serving idiot he is, and played David to a T even though better minds warned him about the dalliance. For that, Los Amigos lost all credibility for me—and that's just one of their sins...
@GustavoArellano @GregDiamond Your Klan pieces are OK -- they are simply not a priority for talking about race in 2012. It would be as if you were writing during the march on Selma and telling people that they should stop bugging you about what happened the Edmund Pettis Bridge because you had something important to tell them about the Rutherford Hayes administration.
How much more important and pressing is it, in your eyes, to note that some cretin from Yorba Linda's distant pass is a Klansman than to ask what the effects of the Costa Mesa Charter would be on that city's middle class?
"Blithering idiocies" from a "laughably inept dumbass" that you apparently can't refute. You pick out one thing to defend -- the most personal thing, naturally -- and the rest you answer with sweeping and general insults. I don't know who you think you're fooling -- but you certainly seem to think that they're awfully gullible.
Ricardo is my name. I had a brief conversation with David Amin and I asked him about their past ties to Pringle. He said that Pringle changed, he is a different person. I am not going to put las manos en el fuego and I will look this up. Many of us look up to the examples of successfull members of our community. The severity of the disagreements between you and Dr Moreno appears as "cannibalism". If the disagreements are legitimate, then ni modo, we will survive.
@rotoro91 Richard--I think that's your name? Los Amigos were the very people who allowed Curt Pringle to get into power, which set forth the very problems they seek to solve today with their forked tongues. You can look it up!
The KKK pieces are a good reminder of the racist legacy in OC. It helps to understand the reactionary set-mind of many politicians and institutions, especially the police departments. However, history and description of current events are not enough to change the pinche reality. Endorsing good people like Duane Roberts is a step in the right direction, but much more can and needs to be done. I do not know Dr Moreno personally, but him and Los Amigos, have done a lot to advance solutions favouring the most vulnerable in our community. I am dissapointed that he has been included in this list. I expected Greg Diamond to be included. He is scary, whether you like it or not, in addition to put you to sleep, the guy is intelectually a force to be reckoned. I appreciate that the word pendejo has not been used to dismiss disagreements.
@GregDiamond As usual, all you offer is blithering idiocies instead of offering any reason for people to think of you than more than a laughably inept dumbass. And your criticisms of my Klan pieces are the very same offered by Matt Cunningham and other similar losers--can't say I'm surprised!
@GustavoArellano I'll grant you the hit on Albert Chavez and I'll throw in the one on Troy Edgar. (The latter looks like it was handed to you on a platter, though.) Those weren't what you mentioned in your comment, though. That was about Costa Mesa.You've stopped calling out "Riggy's shit" -- your coverage of the Charter (Measure V) seems to be limited to one paragraph in your voter guide for that city, here:
"Perhaps the most contentious issue among Costa Mesa voters is deciding whether to pass or strike down Measure V, which aims to make Costa Mesa a charter city as approved by the council. If passed, Costa Mesa would follow a local constitution, giving it more control over its municipal affairs. Essentially, it allows the city council to outsource its workforce, mandates voter approval for any increase in public pension benefits, and prohibits unions from taking money out of city employee paychecks for political use. All of which, the council majority says, will save the city money. Critics, including union members and community activists, contend the proposed charter places too much power in the hands of a few council members, and is unnecessary to balance the budget."
No mention of the great issues that have been brought up continually by the likes of Geoff West and Greg Ridge, asking how THIS charter compares to others -- like in the City of Bell -- and why it grants such MASSIVELY BROAD powers to a Council that has already irresponsibly run up enormous legal fees with other people's tax money to try to fix the race. And this is in your own city! By next Friday or so, I'll have written more about Measures T and U in Brea, which I've educated myself on last week, than you'll have published about the MERITS of Measure V in the past year.
I can't take credit for breaking much new ground on the Charter at our place, but at least I've written about and tried to make sure that people are aware of the great work at A Bubbling Cauldron. The Weekly's just giving a full page to reviewing Geoff West's thoughtful criticisms of THIS PARTICULAR Charter (rather than another possible charter) would be an achievement. But no -- your last story dealing with the substance of the Charter issues was from Sept. 1, 2011: http://www.ocweekly.com/2011-09-01/news/costa-mesa-jim-righeimer-huy-pham/. If one of the civil leaders 100 years ago in what became Costa Mesa had been a Klansman, though, we'd sure know about it!
Thanks as always for the campaign advice. Yeah, I have a campaign to run. Don't you have a readership to inform?
@GregDiamond "Achievements long past?" Tell that to Steve Lodge. Don't you have a campaign to run?
@GustavoArellano @GregDiamond I agree, Anaheim is worse. But surely, Bustamante is scary enough to make that cut.....and don't assume Riggy was my reference. You can hold up a 73 year old retired marine with a gun, or a vicious city code harassment scheme, either way he's getting robbed. There's a lot more going on over here than you know about.
@Gericault @GregDiamond Oh, please. I'm sorry we don't think Righeimer is more evil than a city council candidate who had a man wrongfully imprisoned for over a year, or a serial killer. Besides, we called out Riggy's shit years before anyone did, along with Mansoor, Monahan, and all those idiots. Costa Mesa's problems are nowhere near what's happening in Anaheim, and you know it.