The Lead

Candidate Filing Period Opens

No one has yet formally stepped forward as a candidate for the five-member Laguna Beach school board, where three terms expire in November, according to the registrar of voters.

Pressure Builds on Rohrabacher

This week, a spokesman for Rohrabacher confirmed that he led a congressional delegation to Moscow in 2015 where Maria Butina arranged a meeting with a senior Russian official. Federal prosecutors this week indicted Butina for conspiracy and acting as a foreign agent.

City Trees to Undergo Inspection

On a clear day with little wind, a red ironbark eucalyptus tree of more than 30 feet toppled into one of the city’s busiest entrances on Broadway Street and damaged two cars, prompting a city investigation of the other trees on the block.


Creating a Culture of Kindness

By Amy Orr, Special to the Independent Wearing blindfolds and following guides through an obstacle course, El Morro Elementary students got a chance to walk without the use of their eyes. Youngsters also learned how to give simple greetings in American Sign Language. Some felt...

Have a Blast at El Morro’s Fall Carnival

By Amy Orr, Special to the Independent In a community infused with art, local artwork is often on display. Homegrown talent will be clearly visible at El Morro’s Boo Blast next Friday, Oct. 27; t-shirts for this event feature a drawing done by a young Laguna artist. This year, 80...


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Street Beat

Drivers Take Note: Checkpoint Planned

Police say they will conduct a DUI and drivers license checkpoint on Saturday, Aug. 26, at an undisclosed location within the city limits between the hours of 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Law enforcement officials aim to educate drivers that DUI applies to prescription drugs and marijuana,...

Resident Arrested in Suspected Road Rage Assault

In an incident police describe as “road rage,” Laguna Beach resident Kevin O’Neill was arrested for allegedly using his vehicle to try to run over two bicyclists, who escaped without injury. O’Neill was arrested Sunday, Aug. 13, when officers spotted a vehicle identified as...

‘Doctor Shopping’ Patient Arrested

A Mission Hospital case manager in Laguna Beach who recognized a former patient admitted at a sister facility under a different name led to the arrest of a woman suspected of drug fraud, police said. When police searched the would-be patient’s handbag, they found discharge papers...


Aggressive Tactics Needed Against Smokers

Editor, I’m alarmed and angered every time I walk up to the Carolyn Wood Knoll.  More unsettling than the ever-present scourge of trash and graffiti are the many discarded cigarette butts. Clearly, the city is falling dangerously short in protecting its citizens from the ravages...

Rolling Pot Onto the Political Agenda

Editor, Laguna Beach has at least eighty retail outlets for alcohol, the deadly liquid which causes intoxication and alcoholism, a disease that kills millions of people every year, and yet we have no retail marijuana store. Our founding fathers said we are entitled to the pursuit...

Columnist Errs in Straying into Politics

Editor, Nice article by James Utt. He is really growing as a writer. However, I do not see the necessity of making his article about a fire political in nature:  i.e., “Rohrabacher-red CDM”.   It’s like the actors who ruin a perfectly good awards show by tossing in their personal...


Amateur Video Hits Extra Points for Principal

Buick devised the competition to show that NCAA athletes are about more than points and playoffs. Contestants were required to submit a mini-documentary, up to 60 seconds long, about a former NCAA athlete’s experience on or off the field that caused them to take action. In the...

Chameleon Actor Inhabits a Holiday Classic

Popular wisdom holds that one can’t be everything to everyone. Don’t tell that to actor James Leaming, who embodies George Bailey, the main character, and everyone else in the Laguna Playhouse production of “This Wonderful Life.” The one-man Steve Murray stage play is based on...

Blue Angels Cockpit Cam

The Blue Angels magnanimously invited me to fly with them in their two-seat F/A-18 Hornet, and to put it mildly — it was phenomenal! Invitations for a backseat hop are far and few between, so it was a distinct privilege to be selected for a VIP ride. This type of sortie...