Crawling for a cause

Organizers of the Santa Monica Pub Crawl said Monday that participants raised nearly 6,000 pounds of food and over $3,000 for the Westside Food Bank, enough for 20,000 meals. This photo captures some of the action from the pub crawl, which took place Dec.... Read more →


Put down your weapon

With a handful of reports of celebratory gunfire around the city in the first few minutes of Christmas Day, Los Angeles police and sheriff’s deputies Monday warned people about shooting into the air to ring in the new year. Sheriff Lee Baca and LAPD Assistant Chief Jo MacArthur held a 10 a.m. news conference at Los Angeles police... Read more →


Another storm on its way

LOS ANGELES — A new storm was making its way toward California from the Pacific Northwest on Monday as parts of the state cleaned up damage left by last week’s drenching rains. Temperatures, which had been well below seasonal norms, were up slightly across the sun-splashed Los Angeles area and in San Diego County and showers had... Read more →


City Hall abandons trash yard proposal

CITY YARDS — Santa Monica officials have scrapped a two-year effort to design a new trash and recycling center, citing higher than expected estimates to build the facility. The canceled project, which would have replaced the open-air Resource Recovery Center on City Hall-owned land at Cloverfield Boulevard and Michigan Avenue with an... Read more →


Clean and green

Dear EarthTalk: What’s up with dishwasher detergents of late? They’re clearly not working as well. I hope whatever was done is helping the environment because it’s not helping my dishes. — Sally P., Everett, Wash. What happened was that in July 2010 a significant reduction in the amount of phosphates... Read more →


Resident hit in crosswalk, killed

WILSHIRE BLVD — Santa Monica police are investigating the cause of a fatal traffic accident in which a 66-year-old man was struck while crossing Wilshire Boulevard Thursday night. The accident was the first deadly collision of 2010, police said. Santa Monica’s last fatal traffic accident occurred Dec. 15, 2009. Police said a... Read more →


‘Tis the season … to shoplift

Crime Watch is a weekly series culled from reports provided by the Santa Monica Police Department. These are arrests only. All parties are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Monday, Dec. 13, at 4:48 p.m., Santa Monica police officers responded to the 200 block of Broadway — Nordstrom — regarding a shoplifter in... Read more →


Displaying displeasure with nativity scenes

OCEAN AVE — Damon Vix isn’t a Grinch by any means. He celebrates Christmas, giving gifts to family and friends. But when it comes to the nativity display in Palisades Park, Vix response is “bah-humbug,” or better yet, “Happy Solstice.” The Hollywood prop maker is the man behind a display that can be... Read more →


Providing homeless with a place to recover

MID-CITY — At night, following her breast cancer surgery, Patricia Parker would lie awake in her battered, 40-year-old pickup truck parked curbside on a Santa Monica street, wishing she was anywhere else. The skin on her back and breast was burned raw from the radiation therapy she was undergoing to keep her cancer at bay. The... Read more →


Storm runoff fouls beaches, water

LOS ANGELES — California residents who endured flooding, mudslides and evacuations during a weeklong onslaught of rain now have another problem: contaminated water and fouled beaches. The rain washed trash, pesticides and bacteria into waterways, prompting health warnings. Four beaches were closed in Northern California’s San... Read more →


Armenian taxi drivers allege discrimination, sue City Hall

DOWNTOWN — A Los Angeles County judge has issued an injunction against City Hall’s recently adopted taxi cab franchise system in response to a lawsuit alleging civil rights violations filed by five Armenian-American-owned cab companies that failed to win franchises. A hearing in Downtown Los Angeles is set for Jan. 7 to determine... Read more →


Trying to please meat lovers, vegetarians

WILSHIRE BLVD — When the owners of the mini restaurant chain Veggie Grill were planning on opening their fifth location, they had their sights set on Santa Monica. They felt the health-conscious community known for its fresh Farmers’ Markets and dedication to living healthy lifestyles would make a good fit for the fast-casual... Read more →


Smoking rates decline across state, county

CITYWIDE — The prevalence of smoking among adults decreased 12.8 percent in California between 2005 and 2008 to 11.6 percent of the population, with tobacco use less common in Los Angeles County than statewide, according to a report released this week by the California Department of Public Health. In L.A. County, the 2008 smoking rate... Read more →