2020

Trump pardons Duncan Hunter, who pled guilty to $150K campaign finance fraud

Despite pleading guilty to massive campaign finance fraud, former Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Vapeville) was pardoned Tuesday, Dec. 22 by Donald Trump. A White House press release issued shortly after 4 p.m. PST also named 19 other people pardoned by Trump, including Russia probe figures George Papadopoulos and former Rep. Chris Collins, who, along with Hunter, were the first members of Congress to endorse Trump. Margaret…


ACLU investigating local jail COVID-19 surge

The ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLUF-SDIC) filed a California Public Records Act request Monday, Dec. 21 seeking information on the alarming surge of COVID-19 cases in San Diego County jails. According to the Sheriff’s Department website, as of Dec. 18, 637 people incarcerated in its jails have tested positive for the virus since the pandemic began. “The situation in county jails…


KFMB back on DirecTV, strip clubs shut down

Two developments affecting entertainment options around San Diego went into effect this weekend. TEGNA, owner of KFMB, San Diego’s local CBS affiliate and its CW counterpart and DirecTV came to agreement about resuming service. And a state appels court reversed a San Diego Superior Curt Judge ruling that local restaurants and trip clubs did not have to comply with state and cunty coronavirus lockdown orders. Just…


Ukulele Ray Christmas Ranch Sing-A-Long

Escondido’s Ukulele Ray was a man of many faces, many names and many talents, always entertaining and many time surprising. Scroll down the right sidebar and you’ll see one of his “Only in Esco” cartoons he drew for The Escondido Grapevine. Ray also drew the winter cartoon atop this story, which he captioned: “Harry didn’t always dress like ‘The Grimace!’ We moved to Escondido, so…


Beginning to look a lot like Christmas

No matter what holiday you honor in your home, we decorate our homes to please ourselves and to welcome family and friends during the holidays. Although this time of year seems to be hectic for most of us, transforming our homes with dazzling decorations for the tree, sprucing up the mantel (no pun intended), setting a new, inventive holiday table scape, or hanging an exquisite…



People Behaving Badly: Mid-COVID Madness

People Behaving Badly has seen more than its share of miscreants and foolish hooligans through the years. Now in its 10th edition at this quality online media outlet, this approach to crime, and sometimes punishment, focuses on the strange and unusual, gruesome and innocently hilarious, along with the usual share of death, destruction and eternal damnation. In the age of covid, a new category of…


Escondido, San Marcos news briefly speaking

Legendary North County Times photographer turns calendar pin-up Photographer Dan Rios was a mentor to many of North County’s fellow shooters for two decades. Now, he hits the calendar pin-up trade as featured in the Escondido History Center’s annual fund-raising calendar. Rios worked as a photojournalist from 1968 to 2001 for the former Escondido Times Advocate newspaper, which merged with the North County Blade-Citizen in…


No marriage among Hunter family thieves

Breaking up, in the end, doesn’t seem to have been that hard to do for the estranged campaign finance law violators and married couple, Duncan and Margaret Hunter. It was like “The War of the Roses” with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner meets Shonda Rhimes “Scandal.” Margaret Hunter filed for divorce on Nov. 20 in San Diego Superior Court, according to online records. Hunter in…


COVID-19 ain’t so good for poor people

 Over the course of the pandemic, COVID-19 infections have battered high-poverty neighborhoods in California on a staggeringly different scale than more affluent areas, a trend that underscores the heightened risks for low-wage workers as the state endures a deadly late-autumn surge. A California Healthline review of local data from the state’s 12 most populous counties found that communities with relatively high poverty rates are…