These were the most-read stories for the week of June 20-26, 2011.

  Once Homeless, Now Headed to Harvard

How a girl who once slept in a homeless shelter grew up to be both valedictorian and prom queen and got into the Holy Grail of colleges.

  SDG&E’s Big Solar Failure

The local utility used a suspect solar project to help justify building a controversial power line that cuts through a 117-mile swath of backcountry and desert. The solar plan died, but the power line didn’t.

  School Board Member Walks Out of Meeting

After having his conversations cut short by parliamentary tactics and even a gavel, Scott Barnett put on his jacket and just walked out.

  The Comic-Con Tax

A deal to build a new Convention Center includes a hike in the hotel-room tax — a proposition voters have killed twice. Good thing it won’t need a vote this time. Or will it?

  Dumanis’ Pension: $249,600 a Year, At Least

The district attorney’s annual pension could top $300K if she accepted one as mayor, a VOSD analysis finds. Dumanis says she won’t take a city pension if elected.

  Cleaning the Football Stadium for God

For nearly three decades, thousands of Jehovah’s Witnesses have thoroughly scrubbed Qualcomm Stadium of a year of filth in advance of their convention. They’ve built its offices, too.

  SDPD Recommended Charging Cop, But Sent Him Back to Patrol

San Diego police recommended charging one of their own officers in 2010 after a woman accused him of sexual assault. But prosecutors passed, he went back to work and now faces charges of soliciting sexual favors or sexually assaulting five women during the next year.

  Fact Check: Police Chief Exaggerates Officer Exodus

“In the last five years, I’ve had 345 officers leave the city of San Diego and go to other cities for better benefits, higher wages, and better vehicles and equipment. In that same five-year period I’ve had only 35 officers come to the city of San Diego.”

  Morning Report: Fired Supe Gets Big Check

Schools chief is in the money but legislators aren’t, police chief muffs a statistic, TJ via photos and deep-fried Kool-Aid goes national.

  Morning Report: 250K Pension for DA

Money for Dumanis, highway robbery (not really), Pete Wilson weighs in, pilot doesn’t fly high, and Donna Frye talks smack.

I’m Grant Barrett, engagement editor for Drop me a line at, call me at (619) 550-5666, and follow me on Twitter @grantbarrett.

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