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Stories by Dorian Hargrove

What will One Paseo look like?

Despite compromise and progress, new design isn't drawn yet

After six years of fighting, some residents of Carmel Valley got what they wanted: a scaled-down version of Los Angeles–based Kilroy Realty's mixed-use project, One Paseo. Moments before a city-council hearing to decide whether the ...

A drummer's dance with Mr. Booze

When Dave Madden sprung back to life, a priest was reading him his last rites...

When Dave Madden, drummer for indie-pop group Kingdom of Lights, sprung back to life after his heart stopped beating from organ failure, a priest was reading him his last rites. It was then that Madden ...

No more playtime for Pepper

Multiple witnesses say cop shot dogs after being urged not to

A Lemon Grove man is suing the City of San Diego and its police department for the shooting death of his dog, Pepper, a 14-year-old shepherd mix, in July 2014. Kenneth Stetler filed the complaint ...

Carmel Valley residents displeased with limbo

City council postpones decision on Kilroy Realty's One Paseo plan

At a May 18 hearing, San Diego's city councilmembers postponed a decision on whether to rescind their approval of Kilroy Realty's 1.45-million-square-foot mixed-use project, One Paseo, or send it to the ballot at taxpayer cost. ...

Who's frivolous?

City attorney gets dinged in court again — so does Briggs

In a May 15 ruling, San Diego Superior Court judge Joel Wohlfeil denied a motion from the City of San Diego to impose sanctions on environmental attorney Cory Briggs for filing a frivolous action accusing ...

Plastic-bag ban a no-brainer

Could be why the city ordered an environmental impact report. Seriously.

The proposal to ban plastic bags in the City of San Diego is moving forward but not before the city conducts an environmental impact report. According to a city notice, San Diego's Planning Department is ...

Plummer, rhymes with...

Drummer Joe Plummer's got an impressive résumé and a new record

A few years have passed since the one-time drummer for Black Heart Procession and Modest Mouse, and current drummer of the Shins and Cold War Kids, Joe Plummer, considered San Diego his part-time home. Despite ...

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 ...

SDSU ham-hands itself a lawsuit

Student accused — then cleared — of sexual assault says damage was done

A former San Diego State University student who was accused — charges were later dismissed — of sexual assault on a student in December of last year plans to take legal action against San Diego ...

Floodgates at fire department remain closed

Firefighter sues for not being allowed to review test and grading criteria

A San Diego firefighter who has accused the department of racial discrimination and harassment has filed a new complaint against the city and department for refusing to provide testing materials for a captain's exam that ...

NightmAirbnb

Nosy neighbors call down city’s wrath upon room sharer

Rachel Smith purchased her Burlingame home in 2007 after receiving an inheritance. The 70-year-old retired high school teacher fell in love with the five-bedroom three-bath, 2996-square-foot historical Craftsman home built in 1912. It was more ...

We Complain. She Listens.

My mom walks funny. It’s not a physical problem. It’s a mindset. There’s pride in her steps. She walks strongly. She walks as if she is the first line of defense in case of ambush. ...

Squee! Like a hog at the trough

Lawsuit says SDG&E has been collecting an illegal undergrounding tax

Call it a tax, a surcharge, or "utility user taxes," it doesn't matter: the 3 percent electricity tax and .03 percent gas tax that San Diego Gas and Electric collects from customers and later remits ...

City attorney and council call it a surcharge

Tax fight in Santa Barbara brings out the lawyerly side of San Diego

The City of San Diego is asking the California Supreme Court to overturn an appellate court ruling that found a 1 percent utility surcharge paid for by Santa Barbara residents was in fact a tax. ...

Brains…if only the city had brains

Woman in car trapped in Zombie Walk sues for not requiring parade permit

The City of San Diego failed to protect motorists and the hundreds of wannabe zombies during last year's Zombie Walk. The city also failed to obtain the permits required for any parade or procession with ...

It's Kilroy, from L.A. We're suing again.

Hopeful developer of One Paseo files suit over neighbor's eye-raising tactics

The cost incurred by the City of San Diego over the proposed mixed-use development in Carmel Valley, One Paseo, is increasing. The city has been slapped with a third lawsuit over the now-overturned development. On ...

Park of dreams remains that way

Budget doesn’t include $5 million needed for Ocean View Hills project

Residents of Ocean View Hills, a residential community east of Otay Mesa in South San Diego, have been waiting for a park to be built for 13 years. A site has been selected on Del ...

Two lawyers walk into a swamp...

Cory Briggs and Sarichia Cacciatore mired in details of deposition

Adding Sarichia Cacciatore's name to the list of members of San Diegans for Open Government available for depositions in the lawsuit over the hotel tax was a costly error by the group's attorney — and ...

Not high but dry in Oceanside

Pot dispensary claims their above-board dealings with sheriff led to bust

Eighteen members of a medical marijuana collective are suing San Diego County and the sheriff's department for false arrest and for conducting an illegal search and seizure of marijuana plants in September of 2014. The ...

Going off the rails on a gravy train?

Alleged conflicts of interest within county office of education

For years, the San Diego County Office of Education, the agency responsible for overseeing and allocating funding for 35 school districts in San Diego County, has turned to legal firm Stutz Artiano Shinoff & Holtz ...

Bicycle trap

Despite improvements, lawsuits still being paid out

On Tuesday, April 21, San Diego city councilmembers are expected to approve a settlement offer in the amount of $225,000 to a cyclist who sued over the city's inadequate and defective bike lanes. The lawsuit, ...

What kind of racket is Civic San Diego?

Agency’s backers seek less oversight while one of their boardmembers sues

The Downtown San Diego Partnership, a nonprofit business-minded organization, is stepping up its defense of Civic San Diego, the private nonprofit in charge of permitting in select neighborhoods and handling redevelopment functions throughout the city. ...

Hillcrest Business Association awards contracts to its own president

Business leader Johnathan Hale has no comment about the no-bid contracts for his business.

Charger Girls finally have something to celebrate

Assembly Bill 202 affords cheerleaders a little more dignity and respect

On April 8, the state Assembly's Committee on Labor and Employment moved forward a bill authored by San Diego's former labor leader and current assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez that requires sports teams to pay fair wages ...

More money for city attorney's attorneys

Closed-session vote to fund fight to keep Goldsmith's emails private

San Diego city councilmembers voted in closed session on March 24 to appeal a judge's decision ordering city attorney Jan Goldsmith to turn over 25,000 pages of city emails sent from his private account. Recipients ...

Hot and bothered at San Diego State

Student claims he was booted without a hearing of sexual assault allegations

San Diego State University is under scrutiny for its handling of a sexual assault investigation. In a lawsuit filed on April 8 in San Diego Superior Court, a now-expelled student is suing the college for ...

Shoegazi

Set in Italy, the romance-horror flick Spring was scored by Jimmy LaValle (the Album Leaf), and half a dozen tracks he chose were from San Diego’s melancholic indie-folkies Manuok. Scott Mercado, the creative force behind ...

Too late for the baby who died

City's response to intersection hazard came too slow

The intersection of Catalina Boulevard and Cañon Street has been on the City's radar for a number of years, documents obtained through a public records request show. Seven-month-old Juniper Aavang died and her father John ...

Nah, don't want to spend it on low-income housing

City ordered to distribute $12M in unspent funds

The city can no longer stash more than $12 million in former redevelopment money intended for building low- and moderate-income housing, says a January 20 letter from California's Department of Finance. On April 6, the ...

Jacked by the Box

Residents appeal decision to allow overhaul of North Park fast-food joint

North Park residents are appealing a decision from Superior Court judge Robert Prager to dismiss the lawsuit they filed over the massive overhaul of a Jack in the Box restaurant in North Park. The basis ...

Pup killer

Lawsuit claims deputies entered illegally and shot dog without cause

A San Marcos family whose pit bull puppy was shot and killed by a sheriff's deputy during an unannounced and non-warranted visit to the home is suing the county and the deputies for unlawful search ...

Um, your agenda is showing

Was Cheetahs punished for airing their grievances to the media?

Suzanne Coe, president of the Kearny Mesa strip joint known as Cheetahs, claims the San Diego Police Department's vice unit revoked the club's entertainment permit in retaliation against her and her club after her manager ...

Sanders, Gonzalez, in a back room, together

Construction group accuses ex-mayor and labor leader of unlawful deal-making

Settlement negotiations in a lawsuit over project labor agreements in San Diego appear to be dead, according to a newly filed court document filed by workers advocacy group Coalition for Fair Employment in Construction. On ...

Nine-piece puzzle

Trent Hancock’s 13 years as a musician have been filled with moving parts — bandmates, bands, cities, and scenes. After a two-year stint pursuing a solo career in Brooklyn and Los Angeles, Hancock has returned ...

Pedestrian-unfriendly in Hillcrest?

Alleged sabotage of signage announcing University Ave. planning meeting

A plan to install dedicated bicycle lanes to Uptown communities of Mission Hills, Hillcrest, and Bankers Hill and close University Avenue to traffic in an attempt to make Uptown more pedestrian-friendly has divided the community ...

Damn, Jan, you're in a jam

Litigants from Filner era seek city attorney's testimony about former mayor

By one attorney's account, the city attorney’s office has spent eight times the amount that the city could have settled a sexual harassment complaint for. The statement is found in a February 27 court document ...

The car must know something

City seeks data from SUV involved in accidental death of infant

On March 16, attorneys for the City of San Diego filed a petition with the court to obtain data from 47-year-old David Hoban's vehicle computer system. Hoban’s SUV struck seven-month old Juniper Aavang and her ...

Monsanto: Pay for damaging San Diego

City and port district sue chemical king for contributing to bay pollution

The City of San Diego and San Diego Unified Port District want chemical agricultural giant Monsanto to pay for its role in polluting San Diego's bay and tidelands with polychlorinated biphenyls, commonly known as PCBs. ...

Still, fewer pages than Hillary

Judge orders Goldsmith to turn over thousands of emails

Making the distinction between personal and public emails has been difficult for San Diego city attorney Jan Goldsmith. In recent years Goldsmith has admitted to his use of private email accounts to conduct city business. ...

City attorney slickness no match for First Amendment

Contents of Trowbridge's computer still protected by privacy

A last ditch effort by the Tourism Marketing District to get a lawsuit dismissed for a lack of standing looks as if it will be shot down in court, further jeopardizing hundreds of millions of ...

Chug, chug, chug, shhhh...

Desert Line executive faces trouble with Securities and Exchange Commission

Donald Stoecklein, president and former lead counsel for the troubled binational railroad known as the Desert Line, has run into trouble in the form of the Securities and Exchange Commission. On March 11, the Securities ...

Not in my backyard canyon

Residents of Talmadge and Kensington say transient camps on the increase

Residents of Kensington and Talmadge are asking the City of San Diego to clear out illegal encampments along Aldine Drive. In recent years the canyons along Aldine Drive near Fairmount Avenue have provided temporary dwelling ...

Of leather kilts and opposing bulwarks

Human rights groups enter fray over public nudity at Hillcrest Pride parade

Human rights activists and gay and lesbian advocacy groups are urging appellate court judges to overturn a previous court's decision to dismiss a discrimination lawsuit brought by Will Walters, a gay man who was arrested ...

Western networkings

Onstage is the favored setting for local melodic-punk band Western Settings. Since playing their first show in October 2013, the band has played more than 60 gigs, toured twice, and recorded two albums. Their new ...

To get the Trowbridge Computer

City attorney Goldsmith helps expedite action against Cory Briggs

Judging by documents filed by San Diego Tourism Marketing District attorneys, the argument as to whether the hotel tax is legal rests on a legal technicality that could be found on a deceased man's computer. ...

Are our cops really this bad?

Lawsuit alleges drug-bust action resulted in unprovoked shootings

A man and woman are suing the City of San Diego and its police force for damages after police officers allegedly shot both victims without cause through a front window of the home they were ...

Sabotage on the railway?

Derailment of abandoned train cars "is a major public safety issue"

According to internal emails and photos, several abandoned bilevel rail cars have been derailed east of Jacumba at a place named Dubbers Spur. The derailed cars, stripped of brakes, shocks, and other items, could possibly ...

The curious ears of Midnight Pine

It was Midnight Pine’s cover of Radiohead’s “Exit Music (For a Film)” that caught the attention of a person working on cable network Bravo’s first scripted series, Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce. Not long after, the ...

Oh, those troublesome bike lanes

Change of traffic plan near SDSU doesn't sit well with some residents

Councilmember Marti Emerald is asking mayor Kevin Faulconer and San Diego State president Elliot Hirshman to reject a proposal to widen sidewalks and install bike lanes instead of adding two new traffic lanes in front ...

Adult sporting leagues out of Clairemont!

Residents rankled by San Diego Unified School District’s stadium rental deals

Residents living near Clairemont High had no reason to believe that the school and district had any intention of turning their newly renovated football stadium into a nightly playing field for adult soccer leagues. Why ...

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