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Study Adds Fuel to Fire Safety

In natural ecosystems, fires ignite every 30 to 150 years. Yet over the last century, blazes in the Santa Ana Mountains and Laguna Coast have ignited far more frequently, devouring native plant communities faster than they can regrow and allowing fire-prone invasive species to...

Laguna Cinema Turns Out the Lights

The only movie theater in Laguna Beach closes Sunday, Aug. 30, due to a lease dispute between the owner and theater operator, according to the manager. Patrons exiting South Coast Cinema on Friday night stopped to take photos of the marquee of what is likely to be final showings,...

DUI Checkpoint Nets Six Arrests

Police arrested six suspected drunk drivers, seven others for license suspensions and another for drug possession during a six-hour checkpoint in North Laguna that began Saturday, Aug. 22, police said. More than 2,200 cars went through the checkpoint at Irvine Cove Drive. Police...

Diver Dies Off Crystal Cove

Authorities say the body of a diver was found offshore Crystal Cove State Park about 3:30 p.m. Saturday. The coroner’s office identified the man as Wesley Kim, 27, of Reseda, who was unresponsive in the ocean while snorkeling or free diving. An autopsy will be conducted , the...

Prosecutor Withdraws Cold-Case Murder Charge

Due to the deaths of two witnesses and the inability of a third to travel, prosecutors on Tuesday were forced to drop charges against a felon accused in the 1978 robbery-stabbing of Laguna Beach resident Brent Stapleton Tobey. Prosecutors say they expect to re-file murder charges...

Diver Loses Consciousness in Laguna’s Crescent Bay

A 29-year-old Anaheim man in an early morning diving class at Crescent Bay Beach ascended too rapidly and lost consciousness Sunday, Aug. 16, police said. The diver was brought ashore by an instructor about 8:58 a.m. and treated by fire personnel before being transported to...

‘Enchanted Garden’ Loses Its Sorcerer

Customers juggling intended purchases and wine-filled glasses stood eight-deep at the Laguna Nursery cash register last week. Such a sight apparently proved as rare at the nursery in recent years as a Dudleya stolonifera, a threatened succulent species native only to Laguna...

Updated: Homeless Man Dies in Crash

A roadside shrine on Laguna Canyon Road near the dog park now marks the location where a homeless man was struck and killed by an outbound motorist about 1 a.m. last Friday, Aug. 7, police said. The death is the fourth traffic fatality within the city this year, all of which have...

Streetbeat

Monday, Aug. 3 Traffic collision. Coast Hwy. 11:56 a.m. Three motorists involved in a rear-end collision near Vista del Sol complained of pain and two were transported for treatment. Traffic stop. 600 block of S. Coast Hwy. 2:50 p.m. Robert Dedericoni, 59, of Escondido, was...

Homeless Man Dies in Canyon Crash

A man who had exited a car parked on Laguna Canyon Road near the dog park was struck and killed by an outbound motorist Friday, Aug. 7, about 1 a.m., police said. The coroner’s office identified the victim as 40-year-old Richard McCrary, but provided no home address. The death is...

Personnel File

Foot Patrol Beat Earns Honors   Officer Zach Martinez was honored at the Orange County Crime Survivors gala, which took place in Garden Grove last week. Martinez was recognized for his community outreach efforts in the downtown business district. He is the assigned foot beat...

Court Sets Hearing in Begley Stabbing

Michele Green, a former Laguna Beach resident who was arrested in February for the alleged stabbing death of her boyfriend, Richard Begley, returned to court Wednesday, Aug. 5, where a judge set Sept. 28 for a preliminary hearing, the district attorney’s office said. Newport...

Injured Body Surfer Rescued by Helicopter

A 19-year-old body surfer who suffered injuries when tossed by the waves into a rocky South Laguna beach had to be airlifted out for treatment Tuesday, Aug. 4, authorities said. The swimmer went over the falls in an area known as Secret Cove, a narrow inlet accessible to the...

Streetbeat

Monday, July 20 Fraud report. 1100 block of S. Coast Hwy. 12:59 p.m. A storeowner reported receiving a fake $50 bill. Traffic collision. 1900 block of Laguna Canyon Rd. 2:29 p.m. An 85-year-old Laguna Woods motorist died after a collision with a utility pole. Investigators...