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Morning Lookout: Jailhouse interview with Steven Carillo, SLV misconduct allegations and a spot of good news

Good Morning! It’s Monday, April 19, and we’ll see intermittent clouds and a high of 68.

Last week, we broke the news that multiple San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District employees were being investigated — with two teachers put on paid leave — after a slew of misconduct allegations surfaced on social media. Our Nick Ibarra spoke with two women who graduated about a decade apart and are recounting uncomfortable experiences with one of the accused teachers when they were in high school.

Meanwhile, in a joint reporting effort, our partners at ProPublica took a deep dive into the world of white supremacist extremism in our area. As part of that story, they even conducted a jailhouse interview with Steven Carillo, the member of the “Boogaloo bois” who is facing charges in the killing of Sgt. Damon Gutzwiller of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office.

That’s a lot of heavy material, so let’s start with a spot of good news:

‘Sky’s the limit’: Hoops prodigy Haley Jones talks title, pandemic, encores & Santa Cruz’s best Mexican food

Haley Jones in action
Haley’s versatility has made her hard to define. It’s why she draws comparisons to players such Magic Johnson, Draymond Green and Kevin Durant.
(Via Stanford)

Haley Jones has the world in the palm of her hand. After not just leading the Stanford women’s basketball team to its first national championship in 29 years, but putting the Cardinal on her back in crunchtime, the 6-foot-1 do-everything sophomore guard from Santa Cruz is rightfully beaming. She was the most outstanding player in the NCAA Final Four and just accepted an invitation to USA Basketball’s AmeriCup team trials. Lookout caught up with Haley during a busy post-victory media tour. Read the whole thing here.

Over the years, programs at Life Lab have emerged into one of the premier educational resources for gardening in the...

‘I felt hate more than anything’: How active-duty airman Steven Carrillo tried to start a Civil War

Steven Carrillo is charged with murdering a Santa Cruz County deputy sheriff and a security officer
Steven Carrillo is charged with murdering a Santa Cruz County deputy sheriff and a security officer guarding Oakland’s federal courthouse.
(FRONTLINE via ProPublica)

In nearly two hours of interviews conducted in Spanish and English, as well as in a letter dictated to his fiancée from the Santa Rita Jail east of Oakland, Carrillo, who is charged with killing Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Damon Gutzwiller, talked with our partners at ProPublica in their joint reporting effort, about the evolution of his anti-government ideology. Read the full story here.

RECENT DEVELOPMENT: Extremist ‘Grizzly Scouts’ indicted for blocking federal probe into killings of Oakland fed, Sgt. Gutzwiller

‘This is a pattern’: At least five people now raising misconduct allegations against SLV High teacher

Leann Anderson
Leann Anderson has gone public with her allegations against her former teacher, Eric Kahl, and via Instagram is encouraging others to report similar behavior about SLV High School staff to district officials.
(Provided photo / Instagram screengrab)

Two former San Lorenzo Valley High School students told Lookout about their experiences with Eric Kahl, one of two veteran teachers placed on paid leave by the San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District after a slew of allegations surfaced on social media. Their allegations are part of a larger investigation into inappropriate behavior by district staff that is underway by the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office. “I 100% do think that the school district enables a lot of this behavior with it being such a small school and a small town,” one woman said. Read more from our Nick Ibarra here.

MORE COVERAGE: Two SLV High teachers on paid leave as district investigates misconduct allegations against four employees

Do you like keeping an eye on government? Santa Cruz County’s ‘civil grand jury’ might need your help

Recruiters for Santa Cruz County’s next civil grand jury are seeking applicants ahead of the July start date for a new group of jurors. That begs the question: What’s a civil grand jury? Read more about the court-supervised government watchdog panel and see how you can apply here.

Vans on demand: Santa Cruz Metro launches UberPool-like ride share service for short trips

Passenger vans that will be used for a new rideshare service from Santa Cruz Metro.
(Santa Cruz Metro)

Santa Cruz Metro is launching a new on-demand transit service today. The program, called Cruz On-Demand, allows riders to use an app, or call a phone number, to order a ride in a shared van. Passengers can be dropped off anywhere within a three-mile radius of their starting point (as long as it’s within the Metro service area). Read more about how much rides cost and how to book one here.

Environmental beat

The San Lorenzo River.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

CZU fire not impacting water quality — plus other highlights from the State of the San Lorenzo River event: The CZU Lightning Complex fires created an unprecedented event, the impacts of which are still being felt throughout the county. Now, environmental leaders are trying to understand how the fire impacted the San Lorenzo River, and how best to prepare for the wide range of climate change effects — from fire to flooding — already affecting the watershed. Local water managers, scientists, and the public gathered virtually on Saturday for the annual State of the San Lorenzo River Symposium; this year’s theme was “Recovery and Resilience.” Read more here.

A Hyundai cargo ship en route
A Hyundai cargo ship en route
(NOAA/Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary )

Have you seen the glut of large ships off our coastline? We did too — here’s what we’ve learned about them: If you’ve gazed out at the western horizon lately, you may have noticed enormous cargo ships and tankers floating offshore. Since February of this year, up to 12 of these large vessels have been drifting in the Monterey Bay at any given time. People all along the coast of the Monterey Bay have been calling in sightings of these ships, officials say, and they have sometimes been spotted within five miles of the coast. Our Cypress Hansen and Mallory Pickett looked into the matter. Here’s everything they learned.

Approximately 16 percent of hospitality and tourism workers lost their job in 2020 due to a permanent closure or layoff....

Around the county …

Santa Cruz County greenlights 21-unit townhome project with some units for lower-income buyers (Lookout Santa Cruz)

Santa Cruz theater transformed into a regional arts center (KION-TV)

California Citizens Redistricting Commission continues decennial task (Santa Cruz Sentinel)

Mountain fermenter: Making your own gin, Santa Cruz Mountains style (San Lorenzo Valley Post)

That’s it for today. If you’re enjoying our coverage, please tell your family and friends about our Lookout Newsletter & Text Center, where they can sign up for all the newsletters and alerts we offer. You can also keep tabs on everything we’re publishing through the day by bookmarking our website and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Have a great day!

Tulsi Kamath
Managing Editor