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Would you feel comfortable if your daughter went jogging in a park where, two months earlier, a large, crude and threatening man had tackled and attempted to rape a woman — thwarted only by her timely and powerful elbow to his nose?
How about if it were an attempted robbery — an incident so minor it didn’t even make the daily incident bulletin sent to media and the public?
Despite the fact that John Gardner later admitted his Dec. 27 attack on Candice Moncayo was indeed an attempted rape — and despite the fact that Moncayo says, in her only public statements, that it was definitely an attempted rape, the San Diego Police Department filed it away as attempted robbery. The department wasn’t able to come up with a composite sketch of the attacker and an opportunity to warn area residents that a would-be rapist was on the loose was lost.
On Feb. 10, police inactivated the case. Two weeks later, in that same spot, Chelsea King was raped and murdered. What happened to the case of Candice Moncayo? Reporter Will Carless breaks down the small but crucial details that led police to classify the attack as an attempted robbery, not a rape.
As the community wrestles with how we should restructure laws — or law enforcement — after the disturbing murders of King and Amber Dubois, we must also understand what happened to Moncayo.
In other news this Monday morning:
» Imperial Beach has a problem: Since the Tijuana River was choked off, natural sediment no longer fills IB’s beaches with sand. Yet, the city believes sand is crucial, not only to people who might want to lay on it, but to people who have built homes and businesses near the shore.
The city has concocted a new plan to, for the second time, transport sand from beneath San Diego Bay to its beaches. But last time it did that, debris, pollutants and problems accompanied the sand. What is it doing differently this time and will it work? Adrian Florido reports on the conundrum from Imperial Beach.
» KPBS has been doing a lot of reporting on the death of Anastasio Hernandez Rojas, an immigrant who was detained at the border and shot with a Taser after resisting authorities. Here’s video of an interview with the station’s Amy Isackson Friday, which gives a good summary of what happened, and the U-T now has an update on the case and its broader context.
» On a related note, the Center for American Progress cites San Diego’s low rate of violent crime in a broad “Fact Sheet” meant to contradict the “hyperbole, exaggeration and falsehoods” used to justify Arizona’s controversial immigration law.
» In the San Diego media class, many have been discussing the fate of the San Diego News Network. Two weeks ago, the Reader’s Don Bauder, in a series of blogs announced SDNN’s demise. But in his reporting and in the updates in places like the U-T, there was never any confirmation of whether the entity had survived its crisis or not.
I saw Barbara Bry, who runs SDNN along with her husband, before our appearance on KPBS on Friday and we talked briefly. She said SDNN had, indeed, laid off all of its San Diego staff (its southwest Riverside operation remained whole) but that they had already hired a few of them back and would have a new editorial vision that would become obvious soon.
» Congratulations to the La Jolla Playhouse on its Tony award.
» Saturday’s weekend report was missing a link in the first entry that might have caused some confusion. If you want to read it in its full glory, it’s here.
» Finally, Randy Dotinga, who writes this report every day but Monday (hmmm) sent in this update:
Despite lots of media attention over an organizer’s legal challenges to San Diego’s anti-nudity ordinance, the World Naked Bike Ride only attracted a few dozen participants on Saturday. With a police escort, scantily clad participants bicycled through Hillcrest and downtown. Will Parson, a voiceofsandiego.org contributor, has posted photos showing the unusual juxtaposition of cops and almost bare riders.
Folks, please don’t make those the most clicked-on links in the Morning Report. His attempts to create a new nudity beat for us need no further encouragement.
— SCOTT LEWIS