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Police: Suspect tried to run over Manteca man


Police arrested a suspect for purposely trying to run over and kill a Manteca man Friday morning.

Aaron Harris, 29, was booked into San Joaquin County Jail for attempted murder, Manteca police Lt. Tony Souza said.

Officers found Sergios Bejar, 21, wounded around 5:30 a.m. in the 300 block of N. Grant Avenue. Souza said Bejar was hit by a vehicle. Bejar was taken to a nearby hospital and then later airlifted to another hospital to get treatment. Souza said Bejar was listed in critical condition.

During an investigation into the incident, detectives found Bejar was intentionally hit by a vehicle and identified Harris as the suspect.

Souza said the police department continues to investigate case. Anyone with information is urged to call the Manteca Police Department at 209-456-8101.


Manteca teacher explains using noose at board meeting


A Manteca elementary school teacher is defending his actions at a recent school board meeting.

That teacher held up a rope fashioned into a noose to demonstrate what he's calls the "political lynching" of a black school board member.

If Leo Bennett-Cauchon was looking to stir up reaction at last week's school board meeting, he certainly got it.

He says he held up the rope tied into a noose to make a point about racism happening within the school board itself.

"I was illustrating what I consider to be a political lynching and held this up for just a couple of seconds saying, 'this is how it's perceived by the African-American community,'" Bennett-Cauchon said.

When he held up the rope at the meeting, the crowd gasped and some booed.

Tracy fire continues to impact air quality in three counties


A biomass fire near Tracy continues to produce significant smoke impacts, affecting the air quality in three counties.

The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District said the smoke from the fire is being sent to San Joaquin, Stanislaus and Merced counties.

Smoke from the blaze can emit fine particulate matter (PM2.5), which can cause health issues such as asthma attacks, lung disease and increase the risk of heart attacks, according to the air district. Potentially vulnerable are those with respiratory conditions and older adults and children.

Firefighters extinguished the large fire that burned for several days, leading air officials to issue the health advisory.

Thieves target Manteca Little League


The Manteca Little League is trying to recover after being the target of thieves.

It was sometime between Wednesday night and Thursday morning when crooks used a flat bar to pry open the league's storage unit at Lincoln Park.

"The door was literally hanging off, it had been pulled," said Brian Grabowski, president of the Manteca Little League.

The thieves made off with maintenance equipment, including a four-wheel ATV. "We had a case of Manteca Little League baseballs that were taken. Those were our playoff baseballs," said Grabowski.

The kids' batting helmets and catching gear were also stolen – a total loss of about $3,000.

The young players were left hurting the most. "I think that's messed up since most of the stuff is part of our field," said Mark Lopez-Smith, a Cubs player.

Manteca man convicted of sexually abusing 2 minors


A Manteca man will spend up to nine years and four months in prison after he was convicted of sexually abusing two teens.

Russell Wayne Otto, 58, was arrested in July 2014 for multiple sexual abuse charges involving two children, according to Sgt. Jodie Estarziau with the Manteca Police Department.

In March 2015, Otto was brought forward on charges by the San Joaquin County District Attorney. A few weeks later, a jury convicted Otto on all charges, Sgt. Estarziau said.

On May 4, Otto was sentenced to nine years and four months in state prison, where he will have to serve at least 85 percent of his sentence, based on the nature of his crimes. He will also have to register as a sex offender for the remainder of his life after prison, according to Sgt. Estarziau.

Manteca school trustee resigns, another faces recall over false address allegations.


MANTECA - An embattled Manteca school board trustee has resigned, as another is facing a recall campaign organized by district teachers.

The board of trustees cancelled it's regular meeting Tuesday night after internet access went down, leading to concern the trustees might violate the Brown Open Meeting Act if it took any action.

Before the opening of public comment, District Superintendent Jason Messer announced the resignation of board trustee Alex Bronson. Bronson is facing criminal charges for allegedly using a false address to run for office last fall. Bronson did not attend the meeting.

Victim in multi-vehicle fatal Manteca crash identified


ID=70946942Five vehicles were involved in a multi-vehicle crash that killed one person, according to Officer James Smith with California Highway Patrol.

The crash happened at 7:45 a.m. Thursday on the eastbound lanes of Highway 120 and South Main Street. Stretches of the eastbound lanes were blocked, according to Smith.

Involved vehicles could be seen on both sides of the highway.

According to the preliminary investigation, responding officers think the driver of a big rig may have been going too fast and couldn't stop in time, triggering the collision.