Weekender Updater: Of Sea Lions, Serial Killers, Homeless Shelters and Fired Principals
This weekender you are updatered on: the fate of 14 of the 17 sea lions injured in a disgusting chlorine attack; legislative support for a bill inspired by two alleged Orange County serial killers; the acquisition process beginning on the county's first, year-round homeless shelter; and San Clemente High School seniors indicating if they can't get their fired principal to attend their graduation, they'll take the U.S. Marine Corps commandant.
Update: Fourteen of 17 sea lions injured in the disgusting chlorine attack at the Pacific Marine Mammal Center in Laguna Beach were released back into the ocean Tuesday after having been nursed back to health. The other three require further treatment, according to Mary Beth Steen of the center. Authorities are still seeking the dickwads who poured chlorine into a pool at the center containing the sea lions on April 27. "It was a huge setback for us, especially because those were our healthiest animals and they were, some of them were ready to be released that week,'' the center's Kristen Sedlick told ABC7. "... We were able to push through, keep them healthy and see today, and I couldn't have asked for a better release.'' Her facility has rescued 472 sea lions this year, more than double the 225 average the center fields through May. The capacity there is 125 sea lions. Climate change and a polluted habitat have been blamed for the increase.
Steven Dean Cano (left) and Franc Cano were wearing electronic tracking devices when they committed serial killlings in Orange County, according to authorities.
Courtesy of the Orange County District Attorney's office
Update: The state Senate on Tuesday unanimously approved a bill by an Orange County legislator that would lengthen the prison sentences of violent sex offenders who disable their GPS tracking devices while out on parole. State Sen. Patricia Bates (R-Laguna Niguel) authored the Assembly-bound SB 722 in light of the Anaheim and Santa Ana serial killings blamed on Steven Dean Cano and Franc Cano, sex offenders who were wearing GPS tracking devices when they allegedly committed the crimes but had each twice previously cut off the devices and fled the state. Bates' bill would make it a felony punishable by three years in state prison for the most egregious sex offenders who disable or remove the GPS bracelets. "I am delighted that both Democrats and Republicans approved my bill to crack down on the worst sex offenders who tamper with their GPS devices," Bates told City News Service. "Preventing senseless tragedies in our communities is not a partisan issue and I hope our Assembly colleagues will agree and send my bill to Governor Brown's desk this year." But civil liberties groups oppose the legislation on grounds that current punishments are harsh enough and sex offenders have low recidivism rates.
Story: OC Supes to Vote on Purchase of "Possible" Homeless Shelter in Santa Ana, Whatever That Means
Homeless who gather in La Palma Park in Anaheim may someday have a year-round shelter in town.
Photo by Gabriel San Roman/OC Weekly
Update: Orange County supervisors began the process Tuesday of acquiring a 1.87-acre, $4.25 million parcel of land in Anaheim to potentially become the site of a year-round homeless shelter. The unanimous vote begins a 90-day "due diligence" process that includes the inspection of the site at 1000 N. Kraemer Place. The site is perceived to be less problematic than previous spots shot down by pressure by neighbors (we're looking at you, SanTanans and Fullertonians) because, instead of homes and schools, the Anaheim plot in next to the 91 freeway and a strip club.
Update: Nearly 400 San Clemente High School seniors signed a letter asking Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the Marine Corps commandant in Washington, D.C., to attend their graduation if they can't get Marine Reserves Col. Michael Halt to appear. Halt is also the popular San Clemente High principal who was fired last month for reasons Capistrano Unified School District officials won't disclose, citing confidentiality rules. The district board had previously voted in March not to renew Halt's contract when the school year ends, but he was immediately dismissed as principal in close proximity to the classroom screening of a documentary some parents later objected to due to nudity and mature themes. "We want to hear the words of Principal Halt at our graduation ceremony," the students wrote. "If we cannot have Mike Halt, we would like to have the next best thing. We believe that you, General Dunford, possess the same leadership qualities ... honor, integrity, discipline and remarkable character. ... If we are unable to get Principal Halt reinstated, we would like to invite you to take his place and speak to us and shake our hands at our graduation." Alas, Dunford's representatives say he can't attend the June 19 graduation ceremonies, and without Halt's presence some SCHS seniors say they won't walk. "We are frustrated and furious that district politics seem to be more important than an honorable man's reputation and livelihood," their letter reads.