A Salinas man who was arrested earlier this month in connection with a string of marijuana robberies, is now linked to another marijuana robbery and shooting in Capitola. Police identified 21-year old Vincent Leonard Turner Jr. in the shooting of a 35-year old man on Capitola Road on December 27th. Turner is said to have shot the man in the arm and torso during a drug deal. The victim survived. Turner, who is already in jail and linked to a December 9th medical marijuana robbery outside Dominican Hospital, is expected to face additional charges.
A Seaside man is expected to be arraigned this week after being charged with murdering a teen age boy over a year ago. 22-year old Alejandro Hernandez Delgado is behind bars after 17-year old Antonio Luis-Garcia was killed on a recreation trail in Sand City on October 21st 2012. Delgado is a Salvadorian national. Arraignment is set for Wednesday.
A 44-year old Marina man faces 10-years in prison for strangling his wife. Monterey County prosecutors announced today that Michael Fortner was found guilty Friday of corporal injury to a spouse, assault, and violating a restraining order, and was found not guilty of attempted murder and torture. Fortner’s wife testified, during the trail, how she was strangled to unconsciousness twice on the evening of November 4, 2011 as punishment for staying out late. Sentencing is slated for February 25th.
A man accused of killing a Santa Cruz woman over 2 years ago, and keeping her body in his East Cliff apartment for nearly 3 weeks, was found guilty of murder today. Jurors convicted 66-year old John Bruce Clauer after 4 hours of deliberation in the death of Heather Stearns in April 2011. Prosecutors say Stearns, a 1999 Santa Cruz High School graduate, was strangled and stomped to death. Neighbors claim they heard Stearns cry out for help the night of the murder, but didn’t call police until 2 weeks later about a terrible smell coming from Clauer’s apartment. Stearn’s body was found wrapped in blankets on his bed. He faces 25-years to life in prison.
Santa Cruz Council members are expected to meet tomorrow to discuss taking a nearly 50% pay raise. Council members currently earn an annual salary of $16,700, while the mayor earns $33,500. The salaries reflect 2008 rates less 10%t. The council could either set annual salaries at nearly $25,000 for it’s six part-time members and nearly $50,000 for the mayor, or could also choose to make a moderate adjustment or no raise at all. Assistant Manager Tina Shull said the city is considering increases now because the economy is recovering from a recession that began in 2008.
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