Feed aggregator

Police continue to investigate Oxnard slaying

Ventura County Star Top Stories - January 22, 2015 - 4:28pm

Oxnard detectives Thursday continued to investigate the fatal shooting of a 41-year-old man the previous night.

Luis Amaro was shot about 6:50 p.m. Wednesday near his home in the 200 block of Balsam Street.

When officers arrived, the victim had been taken by family members to St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard. He was transferred to Ventura County Medical Center in Ventura in critical condition and later died.

A preliminary investigation indicated he was standing near his home when he was confronted by someone. Witnesses reported hearing multiple gunshots and saw an older-model sedan, possibly a dark Honda, going north on Balsam.

Amaro was shot in the upper torso at least once. An autopsy to determine the exact cause of death was scheduled for Friday, officials said.

Oxnard police Sgt. Christopher Williams said detectives returned to the scene Thursday and canvassed the area, looking for clues and witnesses who might have heard something before the shooting. He said no one interviewed heard any discussion or argument involving the victim.

“We haven’t been able to find any active leads,” Williams said.

Amaro had an extensive criminal record in Ventura County dating to 1998, according to court records. That includes convictions for driving under the influence, possession of a controlled substance and assault with a deadly weapon.

Amaro also had been convicted of disobeying Oxnard’s gang injunction, but police said the shooting did not appear to be gang-related.

Simi Valley artist has passion for watercolor

Ventura County Star Top Stories - January 22, 2015 - 4:28pm

Throughout her life, Sheri A. Jones always did art-related activities, but it wasn’t until about five years ago, after taking a workshop with Judy Koenig, that she discovered a passion for watercolor.

“From that point on, I couldn’t look at anything without picturing how I would paint it with watercolor,” Jones said.

Throughout her Simi Valley home are examples of her colorful, photo-realistic watercolor paintings, from brightly detailed still-life arrangements to soft, winsome pets.

As the middle of five children growing up in Reseda, Jones remembers always being excited with a new box of crayons.

“I was just fascinated,” she said. “I couldn’t wait to use every color in the box.”

She was encouraged at home and school and took every art class offered in junior and senior high school.

“I took art one, two, three, four, five, six — I think it went all the way up to seven,” she said. “I took all the pottery classes, all the drawing classes, anything they had. Painting, design — I took it.”

Her first commission, at age 16, was to design a sign for a friend of her high school art teacher who was starting a business making barbecue sauce.

“My payment was two bottles of barbecue sauce,” she said. “They are still in business today.”

After high school, she started working and got married.

Her art consisted of making banners for the Little League teams her younger brother coached. When her son joined Boy Scouts, she got involved in that.

“I was one of the first female Scoutmasters in Ventura County,” she said. She incorporated her art as the pottery and art merit badge counselor. In her free time, she made and sold dried flower wreaths and arrangements.

Jones worked in payroll at Kavlico in Moorpark for 20 years. The company changed ownership and her job was outsourced to Mexico in late 2009, she said.

“I decided maybe this would be a good time to pick up my art again,” she said. Through a friend, she heard about Koenig’s classes and signed up in February 2010.

One of the first projects was to put together a collage including materials like metal and fabric, and photograph and paint it.

“You learned how to paint metals and fabric, which is not always easy,” she said. “I think there was also glass. Once you finished that, you could show up with anything you wanted and paint away.”

She continues to paint at Koenig’s studio.

“I’ve learned a lot from Judy,” she said.

In fall 2012, Jones’ husband, Robert, showed her a notice for the Simi Valley Art Association open juried show. She entered two paintings and they were accepted.

“After that, I was hooked,” she said. “I started finding other shows.”

She won a third place in the Thousand Oaks Art Association open juried show in February 2013 and has won other awards, including best of show at the Simi Valley event in 2013.

She was accepted for membership in the Thousand Oaks Art Association a few years ago.

Jones said her favorite subject to paint is “life.”

“I like everything,” she said. “I really like doing pet portraits. It’s like a part of somebody, part of their heart.” She admits she likes the reaction she gets from pet owners.

“I like landscapes, still lifes, just about everything.”

She doesn’t mind a challenge and said she gets teased by the other artists at Koenig’s studio. They say, “If it has a lot of detail, let Sheri paint it,” she said.

Most of her paintings start with her own photographs. She enlarges and traces the image and often starts painting shadows first.

A large painting titled, “Down in the Quarter,” took a couple of months to finish, but she didn’t paint every day.

“This year, my plan is to paint more often,” she said. “I see it as more of a priority.”

She would like to start a co-op with some other artists to have a studio to paint and exhibit.

“I get really relaxed when I paint,” she said. “It just feels right.”

Jones’ work can be seen on Facebook (SheriAJonesFineArt) and on Etsy.

To recommend an artist to be profiled or for more information, contact Nicole D’Amore at artprofiles1@gmail.com.

Oxnard police to cite cars left alone, running

Ventura County Star - Local News - January 22, 2015 - 4:28pm

Oxnard police plan to start leaving citations on vehicles left running and unattended, to help prevent auto theft, officials said Thursday.

Authorities reported a 30 percent increase in stolen vehicles in December compared with a year earlier. Vehicle thefts rose from 63 in December 2013 to 82 last month, officials said.

Police linked the increase to colder weather. A quarter of the thefts involved people leaving their cars unattended with the engine running, police said.

In the next few weeks, police will be leaving $65 citations on such vehicles. Officers also will take the vehicle’s key to the police department, where the owner can retrieve it.

  • Oxnard police gave these tips to prevent thefts:
  • Do not leave keys in the car. If the engine is warming up, stay in the car.
  • Make sure to lock the vehicle. Use an anti-theft device if available and do not leave spare keys in the vehicle.
  • Do not leave valuable items in the vehicle.
  • Make note of suspicious people and vehicles, including license plate numbers.
  • Do not park in dark alleys or other areas with poor lighting.

Residents with information on vehicle-theft incidents should call 385-7650.

Oxnard police to cite cars left alone, running

Ventura County Star Top Stories - January 22, 2015 - 4:28pm

Oxnard police plan to start leaving citations on vehicles left running and unattended, to help prevent auto theft, officials said Thursday.

Authorities reported a 30 percent increase in stolen vehicles in December compared with a year earlier. Vehicle thefts rose from 63 in December 2013 to 82 last month, officials said.

Police linked the increase to colder weather. A quarter of the thefts involved people leaving their cars unattended with the engine running, police said.

In the next few weeks, police will be leaving $65 citations on such vehicles. Officers also will take the vehicle’s key to the police department, where the owner can retrieve it.

  • Oxnard police gave these tips to prevent thefts:
  • Do not leave keys in the car. If the engine is warming up, stay in the car.
  • Make sure to lock the vehicle. Use an anti-theft device if available and do not leave spare keys in the vehicle.
  • Do not leave valuable items in the vehicle.
  • Make note of suspicious people and vehicles, including license plate numbers.
  • Do not park in dark alleys or other areas with poor lighting.

Residents with information on vehicle-theft incidents should call 385-7650.

Einstein, Wine & Brew to benefit science program

Ventura County Star Top Stories - January 22, 2015 - 4:27pm

The 23rd annual Einstein, Wine & Brew event will benefit the science program at St. Bonaventure High School when it takes place from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday in the Commemorative Air Force hangar at the Camarillo Airport.

Vintage cars and aircraft will be part of the event featuring food and beverages provided by Cafe Fiore, Clos des Amis Wines, Hozy’s Grill, Poseidon Brewing Co. and others.

Tickets are $20 for designated drivers, $50 for general admission and $75 for reserve-tasting entry at 3 p.m. For tickets, call 648-6836, ext. 112, or click here.

Obama Hopes Supreme Court Favors Gay Marriage

Wall Street Journal U.S. News - January 22, 2015 - 4:10pm
In an online interview, President Barack Obama expressed hope that the Supreme Court would affirm a nationwide right to same-sex marriage.

Meetings, luncheons and other events planned

Ventura County Star Top Stories - January 22, 2015 - 3:50pm

Camarillo

Fiber guild meeting set for Saturday

The Ventura County Handweavers and Spinners Guild will meet at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Studio Channel Islands Art Center, 2222 Ventura Blvd.

Eileen Hallman, of New World Textile North Carolina, will speak.

A workshop on cotton dyeing will follow from 12:30 to 5 p.m. Cost is $50, with a $25 materials fee. Email swallow8768@gmail.com to RSVP.

Guest guitarist set to perform

The Ventura County Classical Guitar Society will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Pleasant Valley Senior Center, 1605 E. Burnley St.

Ensembles and solos will perform at 7 p.m. Guest guitarist Rogerio Peixoto will perform at 8 p.m.

Visit http://www.vccgs.com or call 482-6224 for more information.

Chapter will work on bookmark

The Channel Islands Chapter of the Embroiderers Guild of America will meet at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday at the United Methodist Church at 291 Anacapa Drive.

The group will celebrate the chapter’s birthday by working on a Hardanger bookmark.

Visit http://psrega.org or call 484-9183 for more information.

Newbury Park

Organic Garden Club to gather at library

The Organic Garden Club will meet from 6:15-8 p.m. Tuesday at the Newbury Park Branch Library, 2331 Borchard Road.

Visit http://www.organicgardenclubofventuracounty.org for more information.

Oak View

Fiddlers invite public to session

California State Old Time Fiddlers will meet from 1:30-4:30 p.m. Sunday at the Oak View Community Center, 18 Valley Road.

The public can play, listen and dance to country-western and bluegrass music.

Admission is free. Visit http://www.calfiddlers.com or call 797-6563 for more information.

Ojai

Hospitalist will give talk to men’s group

The Ojai Valley Retired Men’s Club will meet at 11:45 p.m. Tuesday in the banquet room of Soule Park Golf Course, 1033 E. Ojai Ave.

Dr. Carl Constantine will speak. He is the hospitalist at Ojai Valley Community Hospital.

Call 649-2434 for reservations.

Oxnard

Guests can enjoy Met opera, lunch

The Men’s and Women’s Club of Temple Ner Ami is offering a trip to see the Metropolitan Opera Live on screen, featuring “The Tales of Hoffman: By Offenbach,” at 9:55 a.m. Jan. 31 at The Collection, 2766 Seaglass Way.

Lunch will follow at Gandolfo’s New York Deli near the cinema. Call 388-3824 to RSVP.

Simi Valley

Banquet scheduled at presidential site

The National Engineers Week Planning Committee for Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties will hold the 2015 National Engineers Week banquet Feb. 19 at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, 40 Presidential Drive.

Registration and social hour will be from 4-6:30 p.m. A dinner buffet will be from 6:40-7:15 p.m. and the program will run from 7:15-9:30 p.m.

Early bird tickets are $75 before Feb. 2. After Feb. 2, cost is $80. Visit http://www.newc-vsb.org for more information.

Audubon Society to visit Arroyo Simi

The Conejo Valley Audubon Society will visit Arroyo Simi on Jan. 31 in a joint trip with the Ventura Audubon Society. Guests will meet at 8:30 a.m.

Call trip leader Linda Easter at 482-7537 for directions and additional information.

Thousand Oaks

Square dance event will be this weekend

The Buckles and Bows Square Dance Club of Thousand Oaks will hold an event from 7:30-10:30 p.m. Saturday at the Goebel Senior Adult Center, 1385 E. Janss Road.

Square dance plus-level with round dancing will run from 7:15 to 8 p.m. and between tips.

Cost is a $7 donation. Call Bill and Nancy Armstrong at 497-8398.

Photo group to offer digital camera class

The Thousand Oaks Photo Group will have a basic digital camera class from 6-8:45 p.m. Tuesday and again Feb. 25 and March 24 at the Goebel Senior Adult Center, 1385 E. Janss Road.

Classes are free for members. Yearly membership is $30 for the first family member and $10 for each additional person. Contact Michael Sugar at cameraeducation@topcc.org or 522-1275 for more information.

Author due to speak to woman’s club

The Thousand Oaks Woman’s Club will meet at 10:15 a.m. Wednesday at the Los Robles Greens Golf Course, 299 S. Moorpark Road.

Social hour will start at 10:15 a.m., followed by a business meeting, luncheon and entertainment. Nancy J. Merick, a doctor and author, will speak.

Cost is $21. Call Martha Johnson at 495-8368 for reservations.

Water-tolerant flora will be discussed

The Conejo Valley Garden Club will meet at 9 a.m. Wednesday at the United Methodist Church at 1000 E. Janss Road, rooms 11 and 12.

Sen Dyer will present a talk on water-tolerant plants and soil preparation.

Call Dee Hoskins at 558-8749.

Ventura

Orchid expert to give presentation

The Ventura County Orchid Society will meet at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday on the seventh floor at the Ventura TowneHouse, 4900 Telegraph Road.

Orchid expert Norito Hasegawa will speak. Call 643-3418 for more information.

Public can enjoy stamp trading

The Ventura County Philatetic Society will meet from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Feb. 2 and Feb. 16 at Church of the Foothills, 6279 Foothill Road.

Admission is free. Email vcpsforyou@lycos.com or call 320-1601 for more information.

Westlake Village

Yacht club will hold open house Jan. 30

The Westlake Yacht Club will hold an open house from 6-10 p.m. Jan. 30 at 32123 W. Lindero Canyon Road.

The club is hosting a baked potato night with a variety of toppings, salad and dessert.

Visit http://www.westlakeyc.org for more information.

Agoura High School singers will perform

The Bella Vita Italian-American Social Club will meet at 6 p.m. Jan. 30 at St. Jude’s Church Hall, 32032 Lindero Canyon Road.

Dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m. The Senior Madrigal Singers from Agoura High School will perform.

Call Betty at 496-6905 for reservations.

 

Moorpark wrestles retail store closures

Ventura County Star - Local News - January 22, 2015 - 3:50pm

The Moorpark City Council on Wednesday moved forward on a proposal for the city’s first hotel before reviewing a report on recent closures of large retail businesses.

The council unanimously approved modifications and extended a permit on a Marriott hotel, initially approved by the city in 2007. City officials said a development plan check is supposed to be submitted next week and construction is expected to begin in the spring.

The hotel is planned on a 2.38-acre parcel at 14350 White Sage Road, east of the Highway 23 off-ramp.

View this area of Moorpark.

David Moe, the city’s economic development manager, said many business people and residents say the city needs a hotel.

Moorpark officials welcomed the news about the hotel because they have received many inquiries about what they are doing about economic development, especially because of the recent closures of Albertsons, Big Lots and the Do it Center, all at the Mission Bell Plaza, and this week’s closure of Staples at the Moorpark Plaza shopping center.

Moe said there was an oversaturation of grocery stores in Moorpark, which has a population of 35,149 and four large grocery stores in addition to Target’s grocery section. He said the industry’s rule of thumb is one market for every 15,000 people.

Sales were already declining at Big Lots, and Staples is closing 225 stores nationwide in 2015.

Moe showed the council a four-page list of national chain closures for 2014, noting that analysts agree 2014 was a transitional period for retail because of changing retail distribution models that now favors smaller stores and Internet sales.

Moe said retailers invested in Moorpark for 10 years based on projected growth of the city before the recession, which halted residential development.

Moe estimates that Moorpark’s population will grow to only 45,000 by 2025, while most retailers, such as Trader Joe’s, look for cities with a population of at least 50,000.

“Staff believes if we can increase our buildup population to 50,000, it would open up additional retail opportunities for the city. The faster we can get there, obviously the better,” said Moe.

He added that the city needs to increase its daytime population and rethink its oversaturated commercial zoning in the city.

The city will be undergoing a retail, office and hotel study with the help of a professional consultant, and will update its website and city brochure to attract businesses.

The city also will continue its partnership with the Moorpark Chamber of Commerce on promoting restaurant week, back-to-school programs and business seminars.

Moe said that the city continues to work with Target on a renovation project, and helped recent expansions of Enegren Brewing Co. and the Harley-Davidson store.

City officials also are working with Home Depot on its sublease of a property in Moorpark.

Ventura County Credit Union will be opening soon, and Ralphs market just extended its lease. The city also is in talks with two used car dealers, three industrial businesses, three restaurants and a sporting good store.

Moorpark Mayor Janice Parvin said she is often asked why the city has so many pizza restaurants, and why tattoo parlor and vapor stores are allowed to open here.

Parvin said the city can’t control what specific business wants to come into town and can’t legally get involved with lease renogiations, but the city can control the zoning.

“People need to know that economic development is very important to our city and to the city council, and we work very diligently,” said Parvin.

“The environment is changing and all the communities are adapting, It just so happens that what’s happening to us is all on one street,” she said.

Councilwoman Roseann Mikos encouraged businesses to look into services offered by the Economic Development Collaborative of Ventura County. Mikos is the new chairwoman of the board overseeing the agency.

Read the Moorpark economic development report.

<

Moorpark wrestles retail store closures

Ventura County Star Top Stories - January 22, 2015 - 3:50pm

The Moorpark City Council on Wednesday moved forward on a proposal for the city’s first hotel before reviewing a report on recent closures of large retail businesses.

The council unanimously approved modifications and extended a permit on a Marriott hotel, initially approved by the city in 2007. City officials said a development plan check is supposed to be submitted next week and construction is expected to begin in the spring.

The hotel is planned on a 2.38-acre parcel at 14350 White Sage Road, east of the Highway 23 off-ramp.

View this area of Moorpark.

David Moe, the city’s economic development manager, said many business people and residents say the city needs a hotel.

Moorpark officials welcomed the news about the hotel because they have received many inquiries about what they are doing about economic development, especially because of the recent closures of Albertsons, Big Lots and the Do it Center, all at the Mission Bell Plaza, and this week’s closure of Staples at the Moorpark Plaza shopping center.

Moe said there was an oversaturation of grocery stores in Moorpark, which has a population of 35,149 and four large grocery stores in addition to Target’s grocery section. He said the industry’s rule of thumb is one market for every 15,000 people.

Sales were already declining at Big Lots, and Staples is closing 225 stores nationwide in 2015.

Moe showed the council a four-page list of national chain closures for 2014, noting that analysts agree 2014 was a transitional period for retail because of changing retail distribution models that now favors smaller stores and Internet sales.

Moe said retailers invested in Moorpark for 10 years based on projected growth of the city before the recession, which halted residential development.

Moe estimates that Moorpark’s population will grow to only 45,000 by 2025, while most retailers, such as Trader Joe’s, look for cities with a population of at least 50,000.

“Staff believes if we can increase our buildup population to 50,000, it would open up additional retail opportunities for the city. The faster we can get there, obviously the better,” said Moe.

He added that the city needs to increase its daytime population and rethink its oversaturated commercial zoning in the city.

The city will be undergoing a retail, office and hotel study with the help of a professional consultant, and will update its website and city brochure to attract businesses.

The city also will continue its partnership with the Moorpark Chamber of Commerce on promoting restaurant week, back-to-school programs and business seminars.

Moe said that the city continues to work with Target on a renovation project, and helped recent expansions of Enegren Brewing Co. and the Harley-Davidson store.

City officials also are working with Home Depot on its sublease of a property in Moorpark.

Ventura County Credit Union will be opening soon, and Ralphs market just extended its lease. The city also is in talks with two used car dealers, three industrial businesses, three restaurants and a sporting good store.

Moorpark Mayor Janice Parvin said she is often asked why the city has so many pizza restaurants, and why tattoo parlor and vapor stores are allowed to open here.

Parvin said the city can’t control what specific business wants to come into town and can’t legally get involved with lease renogiations, but the city can control the zoning.

“People need to know that economic development is very important to our city and to the city council, and we work very diligently,” said Parvin.

“The environment is changing and all the communities are adapting, It just so happens that what’s happening to us is all on one street,” she said.

Councilwoman Roseann Mikos encouraged businesses to look into services offered by the Economic Development Collaborative of Ventura County. Mikos is the new chairwoman of the board overseeing the agency.

Read the Moorpark economic development report.

<

Syndicate content