Love where you live!
5500 Grossmont Center Dr. La Mesa, CA 91942
Let your voice be heard in La Mesa Today, part of the Today Network. Share your successes, strategies and challenges. Collaborate with your business colleagues and request advice. Our goal is to work together to build a comprehensive network and to promote the La Mesa Community.
La Mesa TODAY is news intended to promote the betterment of La Mesa and its nearby neighborhoods. We want members who share this goal.
Click on map above for larger, more readable version.
LA MESA -- A domestic dispute early Sunday morning escalated into a fight with extended family members and led to a stabbing that left one man in the hospital in critical condition. Police said a brother coming to the defense of his sister was attacked and seriously injured.
La Mesa police said that at 1:43 a.m. they received a report of a stabbing that had occurred in the 7100 block of Waite Drive. When officers arrived, they found a 21-year-old male victim lying near a sidewalk and rendered treatment. A perimeter was set up on the apartment and a suspect surrendered shortly after. During the investigation, it was discovered that an altercation between 28-year-old Mark Hernandez Cervantes of San Diego and his girlfriend had occurred prior to the stabbing. During that altercation, Cervantes allegedly choked his girlfriend until she lost consciousness and threw her against a closet. When she regained consciousness, the female called her mother, who came to the apartment with the female’s brother. The female victim did not require medical attention.
The brother and the suspect got into a verbal argument that turned physical inside the apartment. At some point, the suspect grabbed a knife and allegedly stabbed the brother in the chest and leg. The victim was transported to Sharp Memorial Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery. According to the hospital, the victim is in critical but stable condition at this time. The suspect was arrested on the following charges and booked at San Diego County Jail.
Cervantes was arrested and charged with Assault with a…Continue
LA MESA -- A group of young East County women are planning a trip to Haiti next month to help artists in that impoverished country set up businesses and begin selling their art works.
As part of this micro Artists For Haiti effort the women will hold a fundraiser Saturday evening at Cosmos Coffee Cafe on La Mesa Boulevard. The event will include music, performance art and a live and silent auction featuring Haitian art. The proceeds will go toward financing the trip and funding the art seminars they are planning (see video below for group goals).
"This came together quickly but we really believe we can make a difference,'' said Shannon English, a barista at Cosmos who is also an artist and will be making the trip to Carrefour, Haiti. Haiti is still recovering from a devastating earthquake and historically struggles with the economic challenges of an island economy.
The group's facebook page promises: An evening of the arts to empower, inspire, and create entrepreneurship opportunity for Haitian people by supporting an artist workshop being put on this summer in Carrefour Haiti. This event will be featuring a live and silent auction, handcrafted and customized feather earrings for sale and performances by local musicans Sydney Blake, Adam Sisco, Michael Pinning and Bryce Turner as well as monologue performances.
"Expect to be inspired!''
Activities start at 6 p.m. and go through at least 9 p.m.…Continue
Hi-Tech Races Off To Fast Start
See Race Video Below.
LA MESA -- The new hi-tech La Mesa Soap Box Derby was off to a multi-media start Saturday on Jr. High Drive in West La Mesa as racers began competing for the cherished slot in the national competition later this summer in Ohio.
The La Mesa Soap Box Derby, operated by the La Mesa Kiwanis Club and sponsored by Drew Ford, now features instant electronically generated results and a course-wide sound system for better communication throughout the event.
Watch out NASCAR!…
Graffiti Taggers Caught With Paint On Hands
LA MESA -- An eye-witness call to police led to the arrest of three grafitti "taggers" who police said were caught "paint handed.''
Just after midnight Saturday morning La Mesa Police arrested three men who were seen tagging in the downtown’s La Mesa Village area.
Officers were initially called to the 8100 block of La Mesa Boulevard by a citizen who witnessed the tagging as it was occurring. A short time later, the suspect’s vehicle was seen driving nearby and was stopped for further investigation. During the stop, officers recovered spray paint from the vehicle and discovered one man’s hands were spattered with paint. The witness was also able assist officers in positively identifying the three as the suspects in this investigation.
The suspects arrested were identified as 18-year-old Jose Lopez of La Mesa, 19-year-old Alex Avila of Spring Valley, and 18-year-old Santino Castaneda of Chula Vista.
Several buildings in the Village area were damaged as well as a restaurant at 70th Street and University Avenue. Costs to clean up the tagging are not yet known, but are expected to be in the thousands of dollars. Police are also searching for additional victims related to this incident.
The La Mesa Police Department works in partnership with the citizens in the community. This cooperation and partnership continues to enable proactive efforts at the apprehension of criminals.
Anyone with further information related to this investigation is encouraged to call the La Mesa Police Department.
You may also call Crime Stoppers’ anonymous toll-free tip line at (888) 580-TIPS (or visit www.sdcrimestoppers.com). You can remain anonymous, and be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 for information in this case.
For full details, view this message on the…
Tales Of The Junketeer
At the recent May 14 La Mesa City Council meeting Mayor Art Madrid requested $2,000 to attend a convention in La Vegas hosted by the US Conference of Mayors. When rightfully questioned by members of the city council as to the value of the event, the entire viewing public was treated with halting defensive explanations that were filled intermittent pauses, fumbling of papers, citing of nondescript collegial benefits, protests that no one ever cared in the past about his travel, and unsubstantiated claims of millions of dollars in grants brought home almost single-handedly. For a moment, it appeared Superman had forgone the blue tights and red cape for khaki pants and an over sized aloha print shirt. Fortunately, the rest of the council wisely saw through the flurry of self-congratulating oral obfuscations and declined to second the request. The council majority is to be commended on the important work of taking steps to gain control over unnecessary and poorly purposed spending, no matter the amount.
In listening to the Mayor strain to justify this expense something caught my attention. At one point he said regarding travel, "The interaction with colleagues is of significant benefit.” Really? If this is true, why did the Mayor not openly share the 28 January 2013 US Conference of Mayors letter to the President he signed requesting stricter gun control on the masses? How is it he was be able to join with New York Mayor Bloomberg and Chula Vista Mayor Cox and not talk with…
LA MESA -- Over the last few months, efforts to build a new Boys and Girls Club in West La Mesa has been gaining momentum. Recently, the group's fundraising effort had a lot of wind blown into its sails with word that Ron Brady, of Brady Company construction, had made a $2-million commitment to the project.
"It's really big, very big for us,'' said Mark Arapostathis, the La Mesa teacher and City Council member who is working with the organizing committee. "That project is coming together. We need to raise $7-million but having Ron Brady agree to the naming rights is a big thing for us.''
Brady's office is located on Center Street in La Mesa but his company does work all over the country. The company's website chronicles work it has done on many of San Diego's iconic buildings and leading corporate projects.
In an interview Thursday morning, Brady said his family was "tickled" to be able to help the project along. He said it would carry the name "The Brady Family Club House.''
"Hopefully this will be a boost along the way for the entire project,'' he said.
Brady was in the first graduating class of Helix High School of students who had attended that school all four years. He graduated in 1955. He built his business from Center Drive in La Mesa, where it is still headquartered, but does work all over California with more than 1,000 employees. He lives on Mt. Helix and has turned much of…Continue
Gingham Closes La Mesa Location
A sign on the door of the restaurant today read "closed for repairs'' but an inquiry to the restaurant's publicists resulted in a statement acknowledging the end to what the owners had hoped to be a successful adaptation of Chef Brian Malarkey's approach to an East County location.
In a statement, James Brennan, CEO of Enlightened Hospitality Group, Gingham's owner, said the company is closing the restaurant to focus on its other fabric-named restaurants.
"Due to the unprecedented success of Searsucker and Herringbone, Enlightened Hospitality Group (EHGRP) has decided to close Gingham in an effort to remain focused on the national rollout of the companies two premier brands (Searsucker and Herringbone.) We will open a third Searsucker in Austin, next month, followed by a second Herringbone in Los Angeles scheduled to open at the end of 2013.''
The restaurant owners did not say specifically what would become of this key space in the heart of La Mesa Village, but did say through a spokesperson that the restaurant is being sold and "is in escrow.'' Richard Felix, who manages the property for the land owner, declined to comment on the property's future. "I can only say what it says on their door,'' he said.
Gingham was a major upgrade of the property, which had previously been upgraded as Gio's, which took the place of Village Garden, a modest diner-like operation that was at that location for years.
The restaurant's struggles were hinted at a few months ago when Brennan was quoted in a local magazine as saying he was…Continue
Thinking Big And Talking About It
LA MESA -- Starting Friday, May 17, SANDAG will hold a series of daytime and evening community workshops throughout San Diego County to solicit public input on the biggest issues facing the region between now and 2050 – issues like the economy, environment, transportation, public health, and social equity. The June 27th meeting is at the La Mesa Community Center.
The input gathered at these workshops will be used to develop San Diego Forward: The Regional Plan. This new regional plan will build upon local planning efforts, and incorporate emerging issues and innovative concepts, to form an overall vision for the region’s future, including specific actions to turn that vision into reality. The SANDAG Board is expected to adopt the plan in 2015.
Evening workshops will be held every Thursday in June from 6-8 p.m. at different locations countywide. These workshops will seek input on the same topics – land use, transportation, housing, healthy environment, public health, economic prosperity, public facilities, energy, climate change, and borders.
Daytime workshops will be held on the third Fridays in May, June, and July from 11:30 a.m. to1:30 p.m. at Caltrans District 11, Garcia Room & Gallegos Room, 4050 Taylor Street, San Diego. Each workshop will focus on specific topics.
Complimentary meals will be served at all the workshops. A printable version of the workshop flyer in English and Spanish is available at: http://www.sandag.org/uploads/projectid/projectid_428_15908.pdf.
June 6, 6-8 p.m.
Click on map above for larger, more readable version of map.
LA MESA -- Local police authorities announced today the results of an undercover prostitution investigation which resulted in the arrest of two Chinese nationals associated with La Mesa massage parlors.
The La Mesa Police Department, in a joint effort with the FBI, ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), California Department of Labor Standards Enforcement and San Diego Sheriff’s Department conducted an undercover prostitution detail at four locations in the City of La Mesa on Thursday, May 9, 2013.
The purpose of the operation was to identify alleged criminal activity that was occurring in massage parlors operating within the City of La Mesa. The operation resulted in the arrest of two individuals on prostitution charges. Those arrested were Xiaoyan Cao, age 43, at Mesa Spa, in the 8000 block of La Mesa Blvd. and Ivy Lihui Sun, age 41, at Transcend Spa, in the 7900 block of University Ave. Both subjects are believed to be Chinese nationals.
La Mesa Police Chief Ed Aceves described the criminal activity as massages that go beyond and into illegal sexual activity for a business establishment. He said the police used the multi-department approach because with federal authorities involved, the charges would have more impact than a simple, local misdemeanor charge brought by local police.
"The intention is to bring more pressure on the businesses and the landlords to clean up this activity,'' Aceves said.
Administrative investigations are being conducted at the four locations by the various agencies involved. If found to be in non-compliance, the…Continue
Warm Weather Can Spur Burglaries
LA MESA -- The return of warm weather brings open windows and the increased potential for burglars to find a way in. See some tips below in the Crime Prevention section.
Case Highlights: On May 8, 2013, at 10:50 p.m. and 11:58 p.m. two separate armed robberies occurred at La Mesa ATMs and are now being investigated by La Mesa Police.
The first incident occurred at the Wells Fargo Bank ATM at 5610 Lake Murray Boulevard. The male victim was approached by a white male or light-skinned Hispanic male asking for change. When the victim told the man he had none, the suspect produced a black semi-automatic handgun and demanded the victim’s wallet. The victim complied and the suspect then fled the scene running west from the bank.
The second incident occurred at the Bank of America ATM at 5500 Grossmont Center Drive. The female victim was approached by an Asian male as she made deposits into the ATM. The suspect produced a black semi-automatic handgun and demanded cash. The victim complied and the suspect took a small amount of cash, fleeing east on Center Drive.
Both investigations are ongoing. Anyone with information related to either case is urged to call the La Mesa Police Department at (619) 667-1400 or Crime Stoppers’ anonymous toll-free tip line (888) 580-TIPS (or www.sdcrimestoppers.com.
To assist La Mesa motorists that may have an unfortunate encounter with a non-injury traffic accident, we want to give you some direction as to what information you…