Otay Mesa Stories

Not fake news: Trump sued for $2 trillion

Prison inmate files handwritten complaint...you can stop reading this story now

Less than two weeks after president-elect Donald Trump agreed to pay $25 million to settle two lawsuits filed in San Diego over his for-profit university, the New York City mogul has been slapped with another ...

Muslim woman sues prison guards for discrimination

Husband an inmate at Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility

A Muslim woman is suing guards at San Diego's Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for discriminating against her and her inmate husband over their religious beliefs. The ...

Power plant ready to fire up near border

Otay Mesa facility to be used during peak demand only...allegedly

A new natural gas power plant in Otay Mesa is "essentially finished with construction and is about to enter commercial operation," according to developer Apex Power Group. Following performance testing, the controversial plant is expected ...

Eagles hate people and avoid L.A.

Tracking study reveals details of the lives lived by raptors

Bob Fisher's three years of finding, catching, and tracking San Diego County's golden eagles have made him certain of one thing: "Eagles hate people," Fisher said. "They hate dogs. They don't mind vehicles, but as ...

Burrowing owl feels the squeeze in Otay Mesa

Conservationists, real estate interests, firemen, can't help but care

San Diego fireman Ed Cormode knows a lot about burrowing owls — as do the other firefighters who work out of Station 43, at the east end of the Brown Field airport. They have a ...

Another day, another Otay Mesa drug tunnel

But this one led to over a ton of coke and was 800 yards long

Federal officials announced today (April 20) that they made arrests related to what is believed to be the longest cross-border drug transportation tunnel (800 yards in length), stretching from a house in Tijuana to a ...

Murderer tries to kill two guards at Donovan

Large piece of concrete rock serves as weapon

Prison authorities say an inmate already serving a murder sentence attempted to kill two guards on Monday morning (April 11) at Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility in Otay Mesa. According to lt. Philip Bracamonte, an ...

"Military age men" at San Diego's southern border

"Credible threat" posed by unknown Afghans and Pakistanis

Among the several dozen Pakistani and Afghan men who have entered the U.S. illegally, coming into San Diego from Tijuana, two were found to have ties to terrorist groups, according to a letter sent by ...

Hike along one of the three rivers that discharge into San Diego Bay

Otay Valley Regional Park Loop features ponds, rare flora, and lots of options

Natives populated Otay Valley 9000 years ago.

Thanksgiving hunger strike

Foreign nationals protest long-term incarceration

Over a hundred immigrants being held at three detention centers, including one in Otay Mesa and others in Orange County and Alabama, started a hunger strike last week to protest bed quotas requiring the U.S. ...

The bail man is richer than the thief

Julius Anthony Keeler's overhead cut deep into his ill-gotten profits

Career criminal Julius Anthony Keeler made a plea deal to settle five criminal cases in San Diego County and was sentenced to four years in prison on October 19. He is being held at the ...

The Cashman taketh, the Cashman goeth away

Government employee took tens of thousands in bribes

Timothy Francis Cashman, a building manager for the General Services Administration, was sentenced to 16 months in custody today (October 23) for taking bribes and stealing government property. As an overseer of property at the ...

Super-tunnel of weed

12 tons of pot intercepted in Tijuana-to-Otay operation

Federal officials last night (October 21) seized control of a cross-border super tunnel running from a Tijuana warehouse to the Otay Center Warehouse at 2587 Otay Center Drive. Twenty-two people were arrested in San Diego ...

BBG Communications greases senator's palm

Otay Mesa company has history of ripping off service members

Wisconsin media, along with the state's Democratic Party, are hammering United States senator Ron Johnson, a Republican, for taking $5400 from Otay Mesa's BBG Communictions, which charges service members as much as $55 for a ...

Illinois fugitive is also San Diego runaway

Joshua Drinnon escaped en route back to Donovan prison

After a two-day manhunt, law-enforcement officials in Illinois conceded defeat in locating a prisoner who'd escaped from custody at a rest stop last week. Joshua Drinnon was being transported back to San Diego's R. J. ...

Border Patrol agent who shot rock-thrower faces lawsuit

Otay Mesa site of latest "rocking policy" suit

The family of a Mexican man shot by a Border Patrol officer last year is seeking at least $10 million in a newly filed lawsuit, Courthouse News Service is reporting. Rocks the size of basketballs ...

Endangered species holds up road construction

Still no sidewalks for SY high school students

The nonprofit organization Casa Familiar held its 17th Safety Walk along the unpaved Otay Mesa Road on Friday, July 31, with about 20 protestors holding signs saying “Sidewalk Promised,” and “Safety For Our Children.” During ...

More power, more pollution

Air-quality board allows for sulfur oxide increase from Pio Pico

The San Diego County Air Pollution Control Board moved on Wednesday (June 17) to allow the controversial new Pio Pico gas-fired power plant in Otay Mesa to increase periodic sulfur oxide emissions by as much ...

Plans on community plan updates soon to come

Brace for City of Villages concept…looking at you first, Grantville

On May 13, city planners will update a city-council committee on the long-delayed Community Plan Updates. The gist: the 12 communities’ plans slated for revision in 2008 will have to wait longer than expected. Over ...

Backcountry to Baja

Otay Mountain, Tecate, T.J.: four-hour day trip adventure.

Awhile back we traveled to Nicaragua. Much of the country’s road systems are inaccessible by car, and if you wanted to explore the interior you were forced to walk, ride a bike or rent a ...

They haul meat

Golden eagle tracking project yields unexpected data

Since three local scientists studying golden eagles started trying to catch the birds in October — to swab them for DNA and pathogens and release them with a GPS transmitter attached — they've gone through ...

New border entry planned east of Otay

San Diego is poised to get the first new Southwest border port of entry in at least 30 years, and it's being built as a toll crossing with the main goal of improving commercial-truck wait ...

Kennedy assassin to remain in San Diego

Donovan state prison inmate Sirhan Sirhan loses round in federal court

One of San Diego's most notorious inmates will remain behind the walls of the state's Donovan Correctional Facility here following a federal judge's ruling that evidence of a possible conspiracy does not absolve Sirhan Bishara ...

Pay up, gringo!

New entry fee imposed to enter Mexico

Beginning on November 1, U.S. citizens planning to stay for more than seven days in Mexico must pay a $23.50 entry fee if crossing at the Otay Mesa port of entry, according to multiple accounts ...

Get down on the trolley

Stations undergoing citywide overhaul to accommodate low-floor cars

Renovation work began at the Palm Avenue and Iris Avenue trolley stations last month as part of the Metropolitan Transit System’s Trolley Renewal Project. According to the MTS website, the $660 million project — a ...

San Ysidro nukes: too hot to handle?

Covert nuclear smuggling data censored by federal auditors

How safe from nuclear smugglers is San Diego's border with Mexico? Not enough, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, which has released a censored version of a report to Congress. The document, entitled "Combating ...

Hot Wheels mafia

Lifers, bullies, and pinchers stake out stores for new toy stock

Last week at 6:30 in the morning there were already a few shoppers waiting in the parking lot of the Walmart at Dennery Road, by Palm Avenue and the 805. Some of the patrons were ...

Cross-border terminal may soon become reality

With no thanks for Ralph Nieders

There will be shovels, most likely a ribbon of some sort, and, of course, a group of well-dressed developers and public officials. They will stand at a barren plot of land in Otay Mesa, the ...

FBI thinks they smell a rat

Border official charged with taking bribes, stealing government property

Timothy Francis Cashman, General Services Administration manager at Otay Mesa, San Ysidro, and Tecate ports of entry, was arrested July 1 and charged with taking bribes and stealing government property, according to the local office ...

Dangerous convict, gardener, or both?

Roughly 17% of apprehended illegal border crossers have criminal convictions

Of the more than 20,000 people apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol in San Diego in the first eight months of this fiscal year, 3321 of them had a total of 6329 criminal convictions for ...

Boardwalks to be built for fairy shrimp

Short-term solution to permit reopening of popular South Bay trail

A popular and vital connector trail in the Sweetwater Regional Park that was closed in December by the unexpected arrival of endangered fairy shrimp may be open again soon. "Everything is going the way we ...

Burrowing neighbors trigger near Mexican stand-off

Radio call made requesting agents with long rifles

A group of five possibly armed Mexican military came through the drug tunnel under the border the night of April 1 and tried to exit in an Otay Mesa warehouse being guarded by the Department ...

Anti-police, anti-prison

Donovan building for sick and disabled called a waste.

A protest against the proposed expansion of Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility brought over 60 people carrying signs and chanting slogans to a remote corner of Otay Mesa on March 29th. The new building is ...

Second wave of Dreamers seeks asylum in Otay Mesa

Immigration policies Inconsistent, says National Immigrant Youth Alliance

Ramon Dorado adjusted the tassel on his graduation cap as he stood stiffly in front of a group of about 35 people he would soon lead 200 yards north to the U.S.-Mexico border. Flanked by ...

Border X expands from the border to the Barrio

Otay brewery shares new Barrio Logan space with local taco company

It’s OK if the words “Border X” conjure little more than question marks for you. Nano-sized Border X Brewing Company opened only a few short months ago. Adding to its relative anonymity is its extreme ...

Unsafe border buses

A little-noticed report by the inspector general’s office of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has found that software problems lasting almost a year, from September 2012 through August 2013, prevented U.S. state officials from ...

Pio Pico power plant approved for Otay

"SDG&E is not interested in updating its archaic business models."

Environmental health activists on February 6 decried the approval of the Pio Pico power plant by the California Public Utilities Commission in San Francisco the day before, saying that the fossil-fuel-burning plant isn't needed and ...

Otay rec center contractor sues city

Breach of contract, withheld payments, claims Speedway Construction

A contractor hired to revamp Otay Mesa's Silver Wing Recreation Center is suing the City of San Diego, saying staffers targeted the small minority-owned business and demanded additional work for no pay and impeded progress ...

Fairy shrimp likely to close a Sweetwater Reservoir trail

"Conservation is becoming a dirty word," says trail-user.

More than 150 bicyclists, hikers, and equestrians heard less than good news Tuesday night, December 3, as the general manager of the Sweetwater Authority explained that a popular trail may be closed by the U.S. ...

City sued to protect burrowing owl habitat

Brown Field development would endanger species

A group of conservation and environmental groups sued the City of San Diego a week ago, claiming that the city's development plans at Brown Field would destroy burrowing owl habitat at Brown Field. Organizations such ...

Geyser murders, part 4

The first person executed by the state of California — José Gabriel — might have been an innocent man.

Geyser murders, part 3

There was enough evidence to hang Indian Jose Gabriel for the killings of the Geyser family on Otay Mesa in 1892…at least by mob standards.

Geyser murders, part 2

The quivering mound of crimson-streaked grime would be the prisoner.

Attempted reconstruction of the scene of a double murder on Otay Mesa in the 1890s. They blamed the Indian, José Rafael.

Geyser murders, part 1

Double murder up on Otay Mesa, 1892. An old Indian laborer is blamed.

Sunday, October 16, 1892Thomas Smallcomb got the news around 11:00 p.m. Trouble up at the Geyser’s. A double murder. The deputy constable flicked the reins and steered his two-horse buckboard east on Otay Valley Road. ...

U.S. government shutdown slows maquiladoras

Increased border waits limits exports

Ever since the “shutdown” of the U.S. government, maquiladoras have experienced plenty of extra expenditures, including fuel costs, keeping vehicles in “overnight” lots, and fines for delivering merchandise late. Gabriel Merino Fausto, president of a ...

Teen Spring Valley girl caught with heroin at border

Over two pounds, concealed in trunk

An 18-year-old Spring Valley resident was arrested on Monday, September 23, after U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers discovered what they suspected was heroin in the trunk of her car as she entered the United ...

Border X coming to Otay Mesa

Meet a newcomer to South Bay’s small suds scene

It took a long time for San Diego’s southernmost reaches to get homegrown craft beer to reach for. The first opportunity came in 2008 when The Brew House at Eastlake brewpub opened. Last year, that ...

Dept. of Homeland Security considers border entry fee

Money would make up for budget shortfall

A translation of a front-page headline on Baja’s daily El Mexicano on Tuesday, April 23, reads, "They Might Charge to Cross to the U.S.” beginning in 2014. The story was about the U.S. Department of ...

Mad Lab feeling perfectly at home

San Diego’s southernmost brewery adding home brew supply store.

Cross-Border Campaigner

AMLO Calls Jaime Bonilla to Mexico

It’s been only a few months since controversial South Bay water board president Jaime Bonilla stepped down from the Otay Water District, but it’s easy to see that his former position is just a speck ...

A walk on the boulevard beyond the race track

I went back to Tijuana last week to participate in a poetry reading at a small university. I say “back” because, from 1999 through 2007, I lived there pretty much full time. I still rent ...

Deficit Dollar Art

The U.S. government may be laden with debt, but that hasn’t kept the feds from looking for an artist to help ornament the soon-to-be completed Broadway courthouse downtown. “In addition to a new courthouse, the ...

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