Category Archives: News By City

Here We Grow Again: Eastvale Celebrates Community Safety Achievements

By City of Eastvale

Eastvale– Safety continues to be a top focus for the City of Eastvale and we are prioritizing community safety in an effort to maintain a safe environment for our community to live, work, play, and shop. We are working hard to enhance the safety in our community through collaborative endeavors that include advancements in public safety, investments in technology, and the active participation of residents in the Neighborhood Watch Program.

Additional Motorcycle Officer and Additional Patrol Hours

The Eastvale City Council heard the community’s desire for increase public safety and in February 2018, they approved an additional Motorcycle Officer position to enhance the safety of our roadways. Most recently, we welcomed our second Eastvale Police Department Motorcycle Officer, Deputy Lionel Murphy, who will be joining our current Motorcycle Officer, Deputy Paul Lonthair in keeping our streets safe through enforcement. City Council also approved 10 additional patrol hours, which equates to two additional deputies and are anticipated to come in the next year.

“We would like to welcome our new Motorcycle Officer, Deputy Lionel Murphy to the Eastvale Police Department family. I am confident that the addition of Deputy Murphy will help reduce the number of traffic collisions and increase the overall safety of the city.”

ALPR (Automated License Plate Reader) Program

We believe advancements in technology is one of the most crucial parts of public safety. The City of Eastvale is in the process of implementing an ALPR (Automated License Plate Reader) Program. ALPR cameras will be installed on patrol vehicles as well as various entry and exit points to the city. This tool will help our Police Department combat and deter crime, assist with investigations, and help identify wanted vehicles.

Streetlight Acquisition

We also believe that increased visibility through lighting is another important part of safety and are pleased to announce that the City of Eastvale purchased 4,078 streetlights located within city limits from Southern California Edison (SCE). Previously, these streetlights were owned by SCE and maintained by the Jurupa Community Services District. With the partnership of the Western Riverside Council of Governments, the City of Eastvale will acquire all eligible streetlights in Eastvale. As part of the acquisition, the City looks forward to retrofitting each streetlight with Light Emitting Diode (LED) fixtures; an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional lighting. LED lights align with the City’s strategic goal to enhance public safety by using less energy and producing a more natural light on street surfaces. Acquisition of these street lights will also serve as a revenue stream for the City of Eastvale while we bring better cell phone and internet carrier service to the city.

Neighborhood Watch Program

We know that community safety cannot be fully achieved without the help from our community and Eastvale is the only city in the nation to have every residential neighborhood engaged in the Neighborhood Watch Program. In 2017, Mayor Todd Rigby, Mayor Pro Tem Brandon Plott, and community member, Don Pettinger began the implementation of the Neighborhood Watch Program in an effort to bring residents together to help combat and deter crime in their neighborhoods.

Today, all twenty-nine neighborhoods in Eastvale have Neighborhood Watch Groups established, there is a total of 60 Block Captains who meet quarterly, and every neighborhood entry and exit have Neighborhood Watch signs installed. Social media has played a key piece to the Neighborhood Watch Program and residents have shared valuable information through the “Eastvale Crime Watch & Reporting” Facebook page. In addition to communicating through social media, Neighborhood Watch Meetings take place throughout the year and have approximately sixty-five residents in attendance on average.

“On behalf of the Eastvale Police Department, I would like to thank the community for their continued support and for sharing valuable information with us, which has led to the immediate apprehension of several suspects,” Chief Tim Martin said.

The significant decrease in mail thefts was the first of many success stories that the Neighborhood Watch Program experienced. With the increase of communication and residents implementing crime prevention measures to their homes, the average mail thefts reported per month decreased from twenty-six in 2017 to six in 2018.

Camera Database Program

One of the other successes the Neighborhood Watch Program has had is their camera database program which allow residents to input their surveillance system information in a database for law enforcement access. Approximately ten different arrests have been made with the help of this database in place. This program truly shows the amount of pride residents have for the city they live in and that they are passionate about being a part of enhancing safety in their community. Residents can share their surveillance system information to be included in this database by visiting: http://bit.ly/eastvalecameradatabase.

Proactive Enforcement

Lastly, the safety in our community would not be possible without the continued proactive efforts made by the Eastvale Police Department. We recently recognized our local Special Enforcement Team (SET) and the Marijuana Eradication Team (MET) for an award recently received by the California Narcotics Officers Association for outstanding Quality of Life Investigations involving indoor marijuana grow houses. We are incredibly grateful for the deputies who serve our city every day to keep us safe and maintain the quality of life in Eastvale.

Aggressive Solicitation Ordinance

To address aggressive solicitation, City Council adopted an “Aggressive Solicitation” ordinance on May 2018 and also installed “It’s Ok To Say No To Panhandling” signs throughout the City. We want residents to feel comfortable enjoying our community and the aggressive solicitation ordinance seeks to enhance resident safety by prohibiting solicitation in an aggressive manner. This ordinance allows deputies to respond to incidents of solicitation that either put the person being asked for money in danger or are done in such a manner to make an individual feel as if they have no choice but to donate money.

“As a community, it is important for us to partner together in achieving a safer city,” Mayor Todd Rigby said. “With the residents embracing the Neighborhood Watch Program, the City installing new technology, and the Police Department increasing patrol hours and adding an additional Motorcycle Officer, we are seeing the results of a safer community. I look forward to the continued involvement of our community in being committed to keeping our residents, businesses, and visitors safe in our city.”

“Together, we can send a message that Eastvale has created a multiprong approach of preventing and solving crime to enhance the quality of life and safety,” City Manager Bryan Jones said. “I am confident that all of us in Eastvale will continue to collaboratively invest our time and energy in resources to elevate community safety. We all deserve the opportunity to thrive in the place we call home!”

The City of Eastvale would like to remind its residents and businesses to be vigilant by reporting suspicious and criminal activity as soon as its seen to the Eastvale Police Department. If you see something, say something. Maintaining a safe environment is a team effort and we are grateful for our team that is made up of our Eastvale Police Department, residents, businesses, and partnering agencies. Together, we are best.

Eastvale Community Satisfaction Study Reveals High Marks for Quality of Life

Results will help City leaders determine future priorities and community engagement efforts

By Olivia Applegate, City of Eastvale

The City’s inaugural Community Satisfaction Study shows that residents are highly satisfied with the quality of life in Eastvale and say it is an excellent place to raise a family.
The overwhelmingly positive results of the survey were received by the City Council at a special meeting on Wednesday, February 27, 2019. The random sampling of 1,178 residents gathered opinions on issues such as transportation, development, public safety, and the effectiveness of City communications.
“Thank you to our residents for providing valuable input regarding our city in the Communication Satisfaction Study,” Mayor Todd Rigby said. “We are pleased with how satisfied our residents are with our City and the services we provide, but we are not complacent with the results. The positive feedback we received symbolizes how well we work together as a team with our City staff, City Council, Law Enforcement, Fire Department, developers, businesses, and most importantly, our residents; all taking an active part in this success. We will use this information to address future planning, funding opportunities, and outreach in Eastvale as we continue to improve our city. We know and understand that our residents desire a better dining experience and are actively working to bring this to our community. Your voice matters, and we welcome your continued feedback, always.”
Among the findings:

• 90% of residents give Eastvale high scores for quality of life and as a place to raise a family.
• 82% are satisfied with City services such as park maintenance, fire protection, emergency medical services, and community events.
• A majority say City staff are professional, accessible, and helpful.
• 71% say Eastvale’s top funding priority should be maintaining local streets, improving intersections, and synchronizing traffic signals.
• City-to-resident communication and engagement is strong; most residents would like to see a smartphone app that allows them to report issues, receive updates, etc.
• 35% of respondents say they long for more dining and shopping options.

The independent survey was conducted by True North Research Inc. of Encinitas, Calif., from January 19 through February 4. Participants were recruited via mail, email, and phone, and the data was collected online and by telephone, in English, Spanish, and Mandarin Chinese.
“The intention of this survey was to give residents a voice in City government and we would like to thank everyone who participated in the study,” City Manager Bryan Jones said. “Understanding residents’ interests, concerns, and needs will help us accomplish the priority goals identified in the City’s strategic plan and exceed Eastvale’s expectations every day.”

WVUSD Joins Great Kindness Challenge

By Kelli Gile

Walnut- Kindness is contagious. It can begin as a warm smile or simple “thank you” and grow to include good deeds that create a culture of kindness.

For the second consecutive year, all 15 Walnut Valley USD schools joined the Great Kindness Challenge, earning the official Kindness Certified School District badge.

Over 24,000 schools across the nation participated in the event, held January 28-February 1, to promote kindness by encouraging students to brighten the days of classmates, family, and community.

Many schools distributed a checklist of 50 challenges that students could complete during the kindness revolution.

Chaparral Middle School seventh grader Troy Pisigan fulfilled over 30 tasks including his favorite, saying “thank you” to the school’s noon aides.

“I could tell by their reaction that the words meant a lot!” he said.

Pisigan said he hoped his actions would motivate others to show kindness too.


“And maybe, it will carry on and they will do something nice for someone else!”

Troy is a genuinely kind young man and shows kindness every day,” praised teacher Sherry Robertson.

“We should all strive to be more like Troy!”

Walnut Elementary students joined a Mix-It-Up at Lunch to have a chance to demonstrate kindness to someone new and sold friendship grams with proceeds benefitting the Los Angeles Mission.

Diamond Bar High’s Wellness Team presented three days of Where’s Kindness? lunchtime activities.

Be Kind to Yourself day, held January 29, focused on self-care and self-compassion, E-cigarette education, stress management, dance clinic, and bungee run.

Wellness consultants staged activities wearing “Where’s Waldo?” inspired striped hats, t-shirts, and round glasses.

When students roll a three on the giant inflatable self-love dice, they complete the sentence, “Three kind words to best describe me,” explained senior Janice Kwon.

Ron Hockwalt Academiesstudents inspired smiles while delivering bountiful bouquets of pink roses and fresh greenery of kale, fennel, and celery produced in the school’s HOPE garden.

Castle Rock Elementary set out friendship chairs were students could relax, mingle, and complete a variety of kindness activities.

C.J. Morris Elementary students designed and decorated cheer-up messages on index cards to brighten up a schoolmate’s day.

Collegewood Elementary hosted We Life Each Other “Up” week (from the animated Pixar movie) with acts of kindness and compliments of gratitude, including writing messages to students at neighboring Westhoff Elementary.

Maple Hill and Vejar Elementary students cheered up schoolmates with chalked playground messages including “It’s going to be a great day” and “Take deep breaths – it’s going to be OK.”

Westhoff Elementary students completed their first kind acts in unison by smiling and offering compliments to each other during a kick-off rally.

“On the count of three, let’s all say, ‘You are smart and you are kind!’” said counselor Ericka Robledo.

Quail Summit Elementary students crafted Valentines cards for local senior citizens and dressed up as hippies during Peace, Love, and Kindness day.

South Pointe Middle School leadership students greeted families during the morning drop-off with “Have a Great Day” signs and collected gently used shoes for area needy.

Eastvale Ranked #12 Safest Cities in California

By City of Eastvale

Eastvale– The City of Eastvale was proud to announce that they have been ranked on the Top 50 Safest Cities in California list for 2019, based on a study conducted by SafeWise. Eastvale was ranked 12th among the 482 cities in California.

To identify the fifty safest cities in California, SafeWise reviews FBI crime report statistics and population data. Their evaluation is based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city. If there was a tie between cities, they also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft). To be equitable, they also calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city. This made it easier to directly compare the likelihood of these crimes occurring in cities with vastly different populations. Learn more about how SafeWise ranks their Safest Cities reports by visiting: http://www.safewise.com.

“We are proud to be recognized as the 12th safest city in California! As the City Council and I met last year, we decided to continue with having Public Safety as a top priority in our strategic plan,” Mayor Todd Rigby said. “We have and continue to make significant investments in public safety to include Automated License Plate Reader (ALPR) Cameras, the Street Light Acquisition, our Neighborhood Watch Program, additional Motorcycle Officer, and additional patrol hours to name a few. As these investments are implemented, we hope to continue to rise on that list of safest cities in the state. We are sending a loud message to criminals and our residents, that Eastvale will continue to invest in our community to protect and keep our residents safe.”

The City of Eastvale would like to remind its residents and businesses to be vigilant by reporting suspicious and criminal activity as soon as it is seen to the Eastvale Police Department. If you see something, say something. Maintaining a safe environment is a team effort and city is grateful for their team that is made up of our Eastvale Police Department, residents, businesses, and partnering agencies. Together, they’re the best.

Corona City Manager Resigns

Eastvale’s Michele Nissen Named Acting City Manager

By City of Corona

Corona– The Corona City Council agreed to accept the resignation of City Manager Darrell Talbert today.  In closed session, the City Council unanimously approved a resignation and release agreement with Mr. Talbert, effective today. 

Mr. Talbert is a lifelong Corona resident and has spent nearly 25 years serving the City of Corona.  His career with Corona began in 1994 where he spent 12 years as a City Council Member and served 3 times as the Mayor in 1997/98, 2001/02 and 2004/05.  Since 2008, Mr. Talbert has served the City in various capacities as the Deputy Director of Community Development, Director of Redevelopment, Administrative Services Director, Assistant City Manager and for the last 4 years as City Manager.

“Mr. Talbert has accomplished too many things during his career in Corona to adequately summarize them and do him justice, but it goes without saying that his love of this community will be felt here for decades to come.  He has served the City through many tough times, and I speak for the entire City Council in stating that we wish him well and thank him for his dedication and service to our community, “said Mayor Jason Scott.

Assistant City Manager Michele Nissen will serve as the Acting City Manager until the City Council has an opportunity to interview and select an Interim City Manager who will serve the City during a nation-wide search for a permanent City Manager.  We anticipate that the selection of an Interim City Manager will take several weeks and the recruitment for a permanent City Manager may take several months.

Again, the City of Corona would like to thank Mr. Talbert for his many years of service and dedication to Corona and we wish him all the best.

Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency Awarded Three-year CARF Accreditation

By Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency

Corona  –  1/15/19  –  CARF International announced that Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency in Corona, CA has been accredited for a period of three years for its Foster Family and Kinship Care (Children and Adolescents) Governance Standards Applied.

This high level of accreditation is awarded to the agency based on the ability to conform to rigorous CARF standards. This achievement is an indication of the organization’s dedication and commitment to improving the quality of the lives of the persons served.

Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency is a non-profit 501(c)3 foster care agency founded in 2003 and located at 1655 East 6th Street, Suite A-4C, Corona, CA 92879. They currently service Riverside, San Bernardino, and Orange Counties.

CARF is an international, nonprofit accreditor founded in 1966 that set standards of excellence for human service organizations whose programs and services cover the spectrum from youth to older adults in a variety of settings.

For more information about the accreditation process, please visit the CARF website at www.carf.org.

For additional information, contact Regina Aguilar at 951-735-5300.

Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency Awarded Three-Year CARF Accreditation

By Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency

CARF International announced that Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency in Corona, CA has been accredited for a period of three years for its Foster Family and Kinship Care (Children and Adolescents) Governance Standards Applied.

This high level of accreditation is awarded to the agency based on the ability to conform to rigorous CARF standards. This achievement is an indication of the organization’s dedication and commitment to improving the quality of the lives of the persons served.

Avant-Garde Foster Family Agency is a non-profit 501(c)3 foster care agency founded in 2003 and located at 1655 East 6th Street, Suite A-4C, Corona, CA 92879. They currently service Riverside, San Bernardino, and Orange Counties.

CARF is an international, nonprofit accreditor founded in 1966 that set standards of excellence for human service organizations whose programs and services cover the spectrum from youth to older adults in a variety of settings.

For more information about the accreditation process, please visit the CARF website at www.carf.org.

Eastvale Rebrands Code Enforcement to Community Enhancement & Safety Team

By Olivia Applegate

Eastvale- The City of Eastvale is excited to announce the rebranding of Code Enforcement to the Community Enhancement and Safety Team, in an effort to reflect Eastvale’s commitment to safety and maintaining positive relationships within our community.
The rebranding of Code Enforcement to the Community Enhancement and Safety Team was approved to align with the City’s strategic goal of enhancing the community’s quality of life. This change reflects the desire to effectively communicate our goal to serve and help our residents and businesses as best we can. This new team is here to help resolve and minimize issues through education first, while taking code enforcement action only when the need arises.
“Our Eastvale Municipal Code is created and adopted to focus on the Community Enhancement and Safety of our residents and businesses in the City.” Bryan Jones City Manager said. “So we are rebranding our team with the goal of community enhancement and safety through compliance, awareness and education first; using code enforcement tools when necessary. We are excited to see our team grow and develop even stronger relationships in our community”
As part of the rebranding, Eastvale residents can expect to see new vehicle decals and uniforms that represent the Community Enhancement and Safety Team. This team strives to enhance the quality of life within our city, and we are pleased with the hard work and dedication they have shown toward our community.

Eastvale to Conduct Community Satisfaction Study

By Olivia Applegate

Eastvale – The City of Eastvale strives to be strategic in communication, community engagement, and community outreach efforts to help lead to a better understanding of the priorities and needs of the community.
The City of Eastvale is partnering with True North Research Inc. in a Community Satisfaction Study to measure resident perspectives and preferences with City services, quality of life, and other relevant information. True North Research Inc. understands and appreciates the importance of gathering public input and providing a voice to residents as part of the City’s planning processes. They also recognize that a statistically reliable survey is a balanced, effective way for residents to assist the City in identifying priorities, making tough budgetary decisions, and identifying strategic goals. Eastvale’s Community Satisfaction Study will provide an unbiased assessment of resident perceptions that are statistically representative of Eastvale’s adult population.
“As we continue to make Eastvale a great city, we strongly encourage the input and feedback from our residents,” Mayor Todd Rigby said. “We strive to provide multiple avenues for our residents to share their thoughts and desires for Eastvale, with one way being our Community Satisfaction Study. These results will be used to ensure the City’s goals, priorities, and budget is in line with what our residents desire.”
A statistically representative random sample of 1,000 Eastvale residents over the age of 18 will be contacted for the study and will be recruited through direct mail, email invitations, and phone calls. Survey results will be presented to the City Council February 27, 2019.
Eastvale City Manager Bryan Jones encourages residents to participate when contacted for the study. “We are excited about conducting this study. This is the first time we are scientifically measuring residents’ satisfaction and preferences about City services and their opinions about the quality of life in Eastvale. This feedback will allow us to know how we’re doing as we strive to exceed Eastvale’s expectations every day and it will provide valuable input for decisions that are made as we help shape Eastvale’s tomorrow, today.”

Eastvale Athletics Business Success Story

By Olivia Applegate

Eastvale– Paul Casteneda and Robin Leafblad manage Eastvale Athletics and CrossFit Eastvale located at the corner of Bellegrave Avenue and Hamner Avenue in Eastvale. Their mission for over thirteen years has been to spread health, fitness, and an active lifestyle to Eastvale residents. 

This past summer, Paul and Robin traveled to Barcelona, Spain to represent Eastvale Athletics and the United States at the Masters World Weightlifting Championships.  Robin placed 1st by lifting 185kg (407lb) with a world record clean and jerk of 105kg (231lb) in the Women’s 40-44 division.  Robin was also named the best lifter across all other weight classes.  Paul placed 4th in the world by lifting 265kg (583lb) in the Men’s 35-39 division.  Both Paul and Robin had the highest totals of any other American in their divisions. 

“We are proud to have community partners like Paul and Robin who invest in the health of our residents,” said City Manager, Bryan Jones.  “The accomplishment that Robin and Paul achieved in Barcelona this past summer takes grit and true determination. They have certainly represented Eastvale extremely well and we are very proud!”

Their fitness program was a tremendous success from the start and quickly outgrew Paul’s garage.  From there, Paul and Robin brought the program to the Jurupa Community Services District and trained at Harada Heritage Park and led specialized aquatics workouts at Eleanor Roosevelt High School.  Soon after, they moved into a commercial property in Jurupa Valley, where they stayed for nearly eight years. Once the Goodman Commerce Center was built, they were finally able to move back into the city they loved, where they have continued the mission of training Eastvale residents for anything and everything. 

“When I left the military, I found safe homes and neighborhoods in Eastvale and decided to make Eastvale home, where I am raising my daughter, Jasmine,” said Paul Casteneda.  “I also saw potential in the area for young families to grow into a healthy active community with proper guidance.  I have been able to use my knowledge and skills from my previous Naval Special Forces training and apply the concept to residents in general physical preparedness and fitness.”

Together, Paul and Robin oversee the training of over 350 athletes, some as young as 5 years old, and are heavily involved in the Eastvale community and the Eastvale Chamber of Commerce.  Some of the community efforts they are involved in are the Eastvale 5K and Roadway Adoption Program. 

“In 2016, Robin and I teamed up to combine goals and see our dreams play out in Eastvale,” said Paul Casteneda.  “With over 20 years of experience and education training teams in various sports, Robin brought a much-needed missing piece to the team. Together, we program workouts for both adults and kids looking to physically prepare themselves for life, sport, or adventure.”

Eastvale Athletics is the driving force behind the #EastvaleStrong campaign which promotes exercise and outdoor activity as well as community unity. Paul and Robin proudly advocate activity outside the gyms and have been taking their members white water rafting every summer for over ten years.  They have recently challenged their members to create and execute their bucket list of goals and experiences over the next year.  Some members have mentioned long hikes, skydiving, scuba diving, and even triathlons; all which Paul and Robin have committed to joining them on each of their adventures.

“I’m very proud to say that Eastvale is a very special place for not only training but belonging, personal growth, and community,” said Paul Casteneda.

Sheriff’s Deputy Killed by DUI Driver

Left: SBSD Deputy, Nicholas O’Loughlin, was off-duty & traveling south on Euclid Ave. in Chino when he was struck & killed by a drunk driver in the early morning hours of February 23rd. Right: Yijie Mao of Alhambra was arrested on suspicion of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and DUI causing injury, after police allege that he was found to be driving under the influence of alcohol and marijuana. (Photo courtesy Chino Police Department)

By City of Chino

Chino – Twenty-Eight year old San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputy Nicholas O’Loughlin of Chino Hills was killed in an off-duty traffic collision in the early morning of February 17, 2019.

Officers responded to the intersection of Edison and Euclid Avenues at 12:31 a.m. for a report of a traffic collision. The preliminary investigation indicates that O’Loughlin was traveling south on Euclid Avenue in a 2006 Chevy Silverado when he was struck by 26-year-old Yijie Mao of Alhambra who was traveling west on Edison Avenue in a 2014 BMW compact SUV.

 O’Loughlin was pronounced deceased at the scene. Mao was determined to be under the influence of alcohol and marijuana. He was booked at the Central Detention Center for gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and DUI causing injury. The road was closed for approximately nine hours while Traffic Investigators processed the scene. The investigation is ongoing.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Officer Bloch at (909) 334- 3018 or mbloch@chinopd.org.

Local Residents Among Plane Crash Victims

Staff Reports

Eastvale/Norco– An Eastvale woman and a Norco man were among the victims of a Yorba Linda plane crash that occurred in the 19000 block of Crestknoll drive on Sunday, Feb. 3. 

On Superbowl Sunday, Stacie Norene Leber, 48, an Eastvale resident, and Donald Paul Elliot, 58, a Norco resident, were visiting relatives Roy Lee Anderson, 85, and his wife, Dahlia Marlies Leber Anderson, 68, at their Yorba Linda home.  Reports state they were at the home preparing for their annual Superbowl party.  However, all four people were killed when a local plane crashed into the Anderson’s home.  Two additional guests were also injured and taken to the hospital.  The plane’s pilot, Antonio Pastini, 75, of Nevada, was killed in the crash as well. 

The incident occurred after a Cessna 414 plane took off from the Fullerton Municipal Airport at around 1:35 p.m. and flew as high as 7,800 feet, according to a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator.  Witnesses reported seeing the plane flying in one piece about 10 minutes from the airport, stating it emerged from a cloud.  However, moments later, the plane started falling apart in the sky as the tail of the plane came off, with the wings following.  The plane started burning in mid-air before plunging into the Yorba Linda home at around 1:45 p.m., causing the home to catch fire.  NTSB reported debris of the crash was scattered among 16 other homes in the neighborhood, where they found the plane’s engine, exhaust pipe, and propeller.  Investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration and the NTSB helped collect debris from the crash and took all the aircraft parts to a Phoenix facility for examination. 

There were also reports stating that the pilot, Pastini, was carrying credentials and retirement papers that identified him as a retired Chicago Police Officer.  However, the Chicago Police Department confirmed Pastini was not an officer with their department and that the badge found in the wreckage was reported lost in 1978.  It is unclear as to why Pastini was in possession of the badge and credentials. 

In addition, local reports reveal that prior to the plane crash, Pastini’s license was suspended twice by federal regulators for flying in dangerous conditions and lying about his credentials.  LA Times refers to the Library of Congress records that indicate Pastini lost his license for 4 months after flying in cloudy, icy conditions and then lying to an air traffic controller about having IFR clearance.  Three years later, Pastini’s license was suspended again due to his plane being behind on inspections, having a brake that was leaking hydraulic fluid, and carrying expired temporary registration.  A Federal Aviation Administration spokesman told the LA Times that Pastini also reported two name changes with the agency after the suspensions.  He was first registered as Jordan Albert Isaacson, then changed his name to Jordan Ike Aaron in 1991, and again changed his name to Antonio Peter Pastini in 2008. 

After the Yorba Linda crash, one of Pastini’s daughters, Julia Ackley, told local reporters that her father was a retired Chicago Police Officer, an experienced pilot, and a Nevada restaurant owner.  She also confirmed that her father changed his name years ago to Antonio Pastini but she didn’t state why.  She told local news that her father was an experienced pilot who flew to the Fullerton Airport at least twice a month to visit her and her daughter.  On Feb. 3, he was leaving the Fullerton Airport to go to his Nevada home after visiting Ackley in Torrance.   She then expressed she was grieving for and with the victims’ families. 

The family of Leber, Elliot, and Anderson issued a joint statement regarding their loved ones’ passing: “We are devastated by our loss of our family members who will be greatly missed.  Our family bond is tight and each member lost in this tragedy represents more than just one role within our family.  We lost parents, grandparents, great-parents, spouses, sisters, brothers, aunts and uncles.  The home lost was a beacon for so many family and friends where many celebrations were held.  We want to thank our extended family and friends who have provided amazing support, kindness and compassion.  It takes a village.”

The statement continued in thanking neighbors and first-responders who put themselves in harm’s way after the crash.  The family also thanked various city and county agencies who provided assistance, local city fire departments, Orange County Fire Authority, local law enforcement, Trauma Intervention Programs, Inc., Orange County Sheriff’s Department Coroner Division, UCI Medical Center, the National Transportation Safety Board, Yorba Linda personnel, and surrounding communities. 

City officials in Yorba Linda also planned a vigil at Glenn Knoll School on Thursday, Feb. 7, where hundreds attended to mourn the lives lost.  A GoFundMe account was setup for the victims’ families and can be accessed here: www.gofundme.com/f/2sswd-family-forever.   

As of now, reports indicate that there is no evidence that the crash was intentional.  However, this incident is still under investigation and could take as long as one year to complete.  Investigators are looking into why the plane broke apart, any environmental impacts, and the pilot’s history and flight experience.     

Here We Grow Again: New Additions to Eastvale

Photo Courtesy: City of Eastvale
Starbucks employees were excited to serve their community on opening day.

Staff Reports

Eastvale– A new In-N-Out and Starbucks have officially opened in Eastvale!  Community members have expressed their excitement for the new additions.  Social media pages are filled with photos of Eastvale families and friends, as they raved about the two new businesses. 

The Starbucks off Cantu Galleano and Hamner Ave. officially opened their doors on Feb. 7.  Many talked about the quick service they received while getting their morning coffee.  Others loved the convenience of the location.  However, the celebration will continue on their official Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting ceremony on Feb. 28 so don’t forget to mark your calendars. 

Photo Courtesy: City of Eastvale
In-N-Out employees hustled while community members enjoyed their food at In-N-Out’s Grand Opening on February 8th.

Even though Starbucks was a hit, the real talk around town was the new In-N-Out that opened the next day.  The Eastvale In-N-Out is located at 4950 Hamner Ave., near Costco and Amazon.  They officially opened on Friday, Feb. 8, but are also expecting to have a Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting event as well.  Eastvalians from all over town were thrilled of how quick their drive was to the new In-N-Out and that they no longer have to visit the Norco location.  The new Eastvale restaurant has 74 seats available in its dining room so stop by and grab one today!

View Homes on Terraced Lots at Hillcrest in Riverside

Photo Courtesy: Frontier Communities

By Carolyn Tate/ Kovach Marketing

A collection of just 26 single family luxury homes at Hillcrest offer expansive views from large homesites.  Located in the desirable La Sierra established area of Riverside, the exclusive tucked away neighborhood by Frontier Communities is priced from just the mid $500,000s with a low tax rate of 1.176% and no Mello Roos or HOA fees.

“Hillcrest offers plenty of choices with three to seven bedrooms and up to 3,204 square feet,” said Mark Hicks, Division President for Frontier Communities.  “Many customizing options are available, as well as move-in ready homes.  Residents will love the convenient location with easy freeway access and being close to their favorite Riverside amenities for shopping and dining.”

Tour professionally decorated models with floor plans ranging from 2,541 to 3,024 square feet. Options include lofts, dens and super great rooms, a sixth or seventh bedroom, and three or four baths. Every residence is complemented by outstanding modern and energy-efficient features to enrich comfort.

Hillcrest residents will enjoy close proximity to schools including La Sierra University, nearby parks, trails and recreation spots. Outstanding local shopping can be found just a short drive away at the Galleria at Tyler, hip Downtown Riverside and Riverside Plaza. There are plenty of great restaurants, museums and other fun activities, plus outdoor events and festivals include the Riverside Artwalk and the Festival of Lights. Easy access to the 91 freeway is convenient for outings or reaching major employment centers throughout Southern California.

Hillcrest is near Norwood Avenue and College Avenue in the city of Riverside at 11758 Norwood Ave, Riverside, CA 92505. The sales center is open daily, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. except Wednesdays when buyers should call for availability. For additional information call (888) 837-5859 or visit www.FrontierHomes.com and be sure to sign up on the interest list.

Frontier Communities is your local neighborhood builder with a vision to help more people realize the American Dream of home ownership, offering attainable, quality homes in convenient Inland Empire and high-desert locations.  Home shoppers looking for solid home value have trusted Frontier’s small town sincerity and way of doing business, along with a commitment to a growing, thriving Inland Empire region.  A variety of programs and special incentives make it easier to qualify for financing, plus most communities have low tax rates and no or low Mello Roos and HOA fees.

Eastvale Residents Exercise the Power of Petition

By Izabella Salinas

Eastvale– Eastvale resident, James Sinnema, started a petition on the website Change.org to bring residents together who share the same concerns for a proposed project in their neighborhood.

In November of last year, the building of a self-storage facility was proposed to the City Council. The property is located east of Hellman Avenue and north of Walters Street. The family owned company proposed a zone change of the land to become commercial.

Many residents were angered by this possible project because it would be located in a residential area near a school.

“A commercial use will not fit with the character of the surrounding uses,” said James Sinnema in their Change.org statement.

The resident does not believe that this two-story storage building would be visually compatible with the surrounding area. Sinnema also expressed concerns with the storage facility leaving land only big enough for a small business to be built.

“As I’ve shared with Mr. Gossett, it seems if the Council were to grant approval for the storage facility and it is constructed, then the remainder parcel would only work for a convenience store such as 7-11,” said Sinnema.

Sinnema and other residents believe that would increase the crime rate in the area.

“As an employee of a local Police Department, I can’t begin to tell anyone the type of calls for service we get from these types of locations. We are only setting up our neighborhood up for failure. Crime rates will rise (thefts, graffiti, break-ins) traffic will increase and our home values will go down,” commented Kristen Kannard.

Over 600 residents have signed the petition.

The public hearing for the possible development took place on Jan. 23 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall.

Walnut Valley USD Begins Enrollment for the 2019-20 School Year

By Kelli Gile

Walnut The Walnut Valley Unified School District will soon begin registration for the 2019-2020 school year for children transitional kindergarten and kindergarten through fifth grade.  Registration dates are:

January 14-18, 2019—for those children with siblings already attending school in our district;

January 22, 2019 & onfor those elementary children new to the district, at any grade level.

You may register for transitional kindergarten if your child turns 5 years old September 2nd – December 2nd.  Students must be 5 years of age on or before September 1, to enroll in kindergarten for the 2019-2020 school year. 

At the time of registration, parents will be asked to present a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate or passport, proof of the child’s immunizations, and for kindergarten and 1st grade proof of an oral health examination.  For residency verification, parents will also need to provide either final escrow papers, mortgage statement or lease/rental agreement, along with a current utility bill (gas, water or electric bill) and a driver’s license (or California I.D.) with current home address.  Enrollment is on-going, and your residence address determines the elementary school where you should enroll your child.

The Walnut Valley Unified School District offers a quality day care program at all elementary site, for both before and after school hours.  You may contact the Child Care office at 909-444-3460 for additional information and fees.

Man Arrested in Chino Hills Murder Case

In the early morning hours of December 19, 2018, Martin Zendejas was beat to death by Ivan Mejia in the parking lot of Hotel Chino Hills . Chino Hills PD arrested Mejia within hours of the attack.

By Izabella Salinas

Chino Hills- On Dec. 19, 2018, a suspect was arrested for the murder of a Chino Hills resident.

Ivan Mejia, 44, was arrested and charged for the murder of Martin Zendejas. The Chino Hills Police Department stated that Mejia attacked Zendejas and beat him to death. Mejia is currently being held at the West Valley Detention Center without bail, according to public inmate records.

Authorities were called to Hotel Chino Hills on Dec. 19, 2018, after a woman ran into the hotel with blood on her clothes screaming for help, according to a Chino Hills PD press release. When police arrived on the scene a man, who was later identified as Martin Zendejas, was found with severe injuries to his head and face.

Martin Zendejas, 54, was said to be in the car with the female in the parking lot of Hotel Chino Hills moments before. Detectives later discovered that Mejia was the boyfriend of the female who was in the vehicle with Mr. Zendejas.

“Mejia pulled the victim out of his car and beat him causing the injuries that led to his death,” said the Chino Hills PD in their press release.

Martin was the brother to former NFL player Tony Zendejas. Martin, Tony, and their brother Javier managed the Zendejas restaurant in San Dimas.

A GoFundMe page was started by Tony to raise money for Martin’s funeral.

“They lost a great man, father, brother & friend. Martin Zendejas was an amazing man that was taken too soon,” according to the page. They hope to raise $25,000.

There’s an outpour of love and support for the Zendejas family in the comments on the campaign.

“So sorry for your loss, Marty was the nicest man, I really enjoyed working at the Restaurant with him a long time ago. Love and Prayers to the Zendejas Family,” commented Yolanda Falciani.

Visit gf.me/u/psbbab to donate to the campaign.

Chino’s Plans to Expand Roadway Runs into Problems

City is forced to exercise their 5th Amendment right to Eminent Domain

By Izabella Salinas

Chino- The Pine Avenue Widening Project, Chino’s plan to expand Pine Avenue into six lanes, has hit an obstacle due to the City being unable to reach an agreement with the owners of the land needed for the expansion.  A resolution between the parties has not been easy, forcing the City to utilize “eminent domain.”

Eminent domain is the right provided by the Fifth Amendment in the constitution. It refers to the government’s ability to take private property for public use. However, they must provide the property owner with “just compensation,” which is determined by a property appraisal.

Lewis Operating Corporation plans to build 600 residential units, but their plan requires the dedication of certain land to the widening of Pine Avenue. This required land is part of the H&R Barthelemy Dairy Farm and has been in the Barthelemy family for over 70 years.  

Lewis Operating Corporation has been trying to obtain the land since last year but has been unable to reach an agreement with the family. Because of this, the City has voted to acquire the land by exercising their right of eminent domain.

“For the public purposes set forth herein, the City of Chino is authorized to acquire property through the exercise of eminent domain,” said the Chino City Hall Staff report.

The required easements for the project include a permanent easement of 110,766 square ft., slope easements, a drainage easement, a flooding easement, an access easement, and a temporary construction easement. An easement is the right to use another person’s land for a specified purpose.

“Pine Avenue needs to be widened to accommodate existing and future traffic due to development in the area,” said the Chino City Hall staff report.

The City of Chino states that the land owned by H&R Barthelemy Farms is necessary in order for their Pine Avenue Widening Project to move forward. The Project is deemed to be for the greater good of the public.

“The acquisition of the Easements is necessary for the Project because without them the Project cannot be constructed,” according to the staff report.

The Barthelemy family wishes to have their own appraisal of the property made and to be given a reasonable amount of time to do so.

“In order to engage in meaningful negotiation with the City, we wish to have the property independently appraised,” wrote Dan Barthelemy in a letter to the City.

In accordance to California eminent domain laws, the property owner does not have to accept the City’s offer and they are able to make a counter-offer.

No deal has yet been made.

Visit https://eminentdomain.uslegal.com/state-laws-on-eminent-domain/california/ to find more details about California eminent domain laws.

1983 Murder Case is Back in News

Governor Brown Orders Retesting of Evidence

By Izabella Salinas

Chino Hills- In his last days in office, Governor Jerry Brown ordered retesting of four pieces of evidence from a 1983 Chino Hills murder case.

35 years ago, a man named Kevin Cooper was convicted for the murders of Doug and Peggy Ryen, their daughter Jessica, their neighbor Christopher Hughes, and the attempted murder of their son Josh. Cooper was given the death penalty and was scheduled for execution in 2004. However, the execution was blocked due to a federal appellate court in San Francisco ordering a review of the scientific evidence.

San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos argues that two existing tests have proven that Cooper is the killer. The tests show that Cooper was in the Ryen home, he smoked a cigarette in the Ryen’s stolen vehicle, and Cooper’s blood, along with the blood of one of the victims, was found on an abandoned T-Shirt along the road. The new testing would reevaluate this evidence.

“The purpose of this new testing is to determine whether another suspected person’s DNA, or the DNA of any other identifiable suspect based on a match in the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) database, is present on the items tested,” said Governor Jerry Brown in his executive order.

Cooper and his attorney argue that additional testing with new available technology will show he is in fact innocent.

This quadruple murder changed the perception of the community and instilled fear amongst people near and far.

“I never let my children sleepover at their friends’ houses solely because of this case,” said Eastvale resident Veronica Sahagun, “I heard the story and was mortified.”

Doug and Peggy Ryen’s son was the only survivor of the attack. Josh Ryen’s best friend Christopher Hughes was sleeping over the night of the murders.

“I invited my best friend Chris Hughes to spend the night at my house. If I had not, Chris would still be alive today,” said Josh in a letter to Governor Jerry Brown.

At the time, Josh was only eight years old and was initially unable to identify Kevin Cooper as the killer, but he can now positively say that Kevin Cooper is the murderer of his family and best friend.

“Kevin Cooper is a liar. He lies about everything. When he is caught in his lies, he lies more and more,” said Josh in his letter as he begs for the state of California to stop subsidizing Kevin Cooper.

“I take no position as to Mr. Cooper’s guilt or innocence at this time,” said Governor Jerry Brown.

A date for the retesting has not yet been set.

Left: Kevin Cooper was convicted for the Ryen/Hughes murders and was sentenced to death in 1985. Right: Cooper smiles from his cell on San Quentin’s Death Row in 2017.

Chino Taking Action to Show They Care

By Izabella Salinas

Chino- Different members of the city of Chino have joined together to create a movement called “Chino Cares.”

Chino Cares is a movement with the ultimate goal to unite each group in the diverse Chino community. They plan to do this by asking members to pledge to five things: Be informed, be prepared, be connected, be committed, and be supportive. These pledges mean members must remain informed about the city, sign up for Chino’s mass communication system, commit to the safety of their neighbor, be prepared for disaster, and show support for the city by attending city events.

More than 200 city employees have pledged their allegiance to the campaign. The movement began with only city employees but has now expanded to allow residents, business owners, and organizations to join. Chino Cares believes that it is important for everyone to participate in the making of a more resilient community.

Since the expansion of membership to other parts of the community, there have been 180 households and eight businesses/organizations who have pledged to Chino Cares.

“We want to make our community even stronger so that we will be more resilient and recover more quickly when disaster strikes,” said Christin Wolff, the founder of Chino Cares.

Chino Cares hopes the concept of their movement will eventually reach every city across the nation.

“In a nation where communities are dividing over their differences, the City of Chino is looking to unify under the one sentiment that is common across the spectrum – ‘We Care’,” said the City of Chino website.

The campaign has provided special events for people in the community to meet members serving in the movement.

“We intend to do more of this in the future, bringing City Hall into our neighborhoods as another example of the ways in which ‘Chino Cares’,” said Christin Wolff.

The Chino Cares motto is, “Resilience through Unity.”

Visit http://www.cityofchino.org/chinocares to take the pledge and join the movement to unify.