Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Watch Live

Hearing continues in case against former SDSU athlete

 July 24, 2023 at 5:00 AM PDT

Good Morning, I’m Debbie Cruz….it’s Monday, July 24th.


The latest in a civil case against a former S-D-S-U football player accused of rape.

More on that next. But first... let’s do the headlines….


An almost three-year effort to help tens of thousands of displaced Afghans gain residency in the U-S has new life in Washington, D-C.

A bipartisan group of senators want to tie the Afghan Adjustment Act to next year's defense bill.

Senator Amy Klobuchar implored her colleagues to support the bill in a speech from the senate floor last week.

“This bill does right by Afghans who worked alongside our troops and shows the world that the United States of America, when we make a promise, we keep it.”

First introduced in 20-22, the bill failed to gain majority support over republican opposition.


Westfield has sold both its Mission Valley shopping centers to separate buyers for a combined 290 million dollars.

The announcement came two days after the San Diego city council approved Mission Valley West to be zoned for mixed use, allowing for housing to be added.

According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Mission Valley West Center was purchased by Sunbelt Investment Holding Inc.

While investors Lowe and Real Capital Solutions, acquired the larger Mission Valley East Mall.

Lowe said it plans on remaking the mall into a mixed-use property with housing.


The English premier soccer league Manchester United will be playing in the U-S tomorrow for the first time in five years… and they’ll be playing right here in San Diego!

Manchester United– sometimes referred to as Man-U, will be playing against the Welsh Team Wrexham at Snapdragon Stadium.

If you want to go cheer on the international teams, tickets for the game are still available.

They range from close to 90-dollars, to over 200-dollars.

The game starts at 7-30 P-M.


From KPBS, you’re listening to San Diego News Now. Stay with me for more of the local news you need.


The hearing continues in a civil case against former S-D-S-U football star Matt Araiza.

At the center of Friday’s arguments.. were videos of the alleged rape at a house party near the S-D-S-U campus.

Reporter Alexander Nguyen has the latest.

In court … matt araiza’s attorney says this is about fairness. attorney dick semerdjian says if this were a criminal trial … those videos would definitely be available for araiza’s defense. he says they should be available for araiza’s civil defense as well because the facts of the case are essentially the same. dick semerdjian matt araiza’s attorney “those videos are the best evidence in this case as to whether there was assault, whether there was intoxication.” araiza … along with four other former san diego state football players … are accused in a civil lawsuit of raping a then-17-year-old girl at a house party near the sdsu campus on october 20-21. police obtained the videos of the alleged assault during their criminal investigation.the attorney for the young woman said because the clips were from the alleged attacker’s point of view and only showed the young woman, they have no value for the defense. san diego superior court judge matthew braner says he will issue a ruling in two weeks on whether they can be released and entered into evidence. an/kpbs.


A valuable swath of land in Proctor Valley could be getting closer to long term protection.

That’s thanks in part to a provision in last week’s legal settlement over the nation’s border wall project.

Environment reporter Erik Anderson has details.

A parcel of land between the federally protected San Diego National Wildlife Refuge and the state protected Rancho Jamul Ecological Reserve is on a path to getting permanent protections.  The Chaparral Lands Conservancy’s David Hogan says the land sits in Proctor Valley next to Chula Vista. David Hogan, Chaparral Lands Conservancy (Director) “That private property that was planned for just another awful sprawl development east of Chula Vista, if that land is protected, it protects the absolute core of that natural Landscape.” 18 states and two environmental organizations agreed to settle their challenge over how the wall construction was funded.  That agreement included several concessions to account for the ecological damage caused by the wall, including 25 million dollars to help buy the property known as Otay Village Ranch 14.  The endangered Habitat’s Leagues’s Dan Silver says that’s a major step toward the property’s roughly 60 million dollar purchase price. Dan Silver, Endangered Habitats League. (Executive Director) “In anything of this nature, you try to….you’re never going to get all of the money from one source. You have to go to different sources.  So we  next looked to different state sources, federal sources, even private parties. You know, individuals who might want to donate.” The Nature Conservancy is leading talks to buy the property. They say the money is encouraging, but the group isn’t interested in discussing the deal until it is finalized.  That could happen next year. The Center for Biological Diversity’s Peter Broderick says Plans to build a housing development on the property were snuffed out by the courts over concerns about wildfires. Peter Broderick, Center for Biological Diversity (Senior Attorney) percent of California’s wildfires are started by humans, so when you locate new people and new development to undeveloped areas that are prone to wildfire you create new risks. And that’s what was going on here.” The land is considered critical habitat for golden eagles, the rare Quino Checkerspot butterfly and vernal pools which are home to several endangered species.  If the purchase goes through the land would likely become part of either the federal or state reserve. Erik Anderson KPBS News.


After two years of work, the City of Oceanside held a ribbon cutting ceremony late last week, for their first homeless shelter.

North County reporter Tania Thorne was there for a first look.

Local, county, and state officials gathered for the opening of Oceanside’s first homeless shelter. The property underwent a 7 million dollar renovation to transform the former school grounds into a 50 bed shelter. Donnie Dee is the head of the San Diego Rescue Mission, the organization contracted by the city to run the shelters program. DONNIE DEE/SAN DIEGO RESCUE MISSION You’re gonna walk up those steps and feel like I gotta chance. This is not a tent. This is not a parking lot. This is a place where you’re gonna get a lot of care, a lot of love, a lot of kindness, and we’re gonna help you figure out your stuff. Dee says the shelter will begin to welcome people experiencing homelessness in two weeks. The San Diego Rescue Mission will run the shelter for a year before considering expanding it to 100 beds. TT KPBS News. 


There are currently around 22-hundred children in foster care in the county.

Reporter Melissa Mae introduces us to a volunteer advocate who supports these vulnerable children in court and life.

MM: Court Appointed Special Advocates better known as CASAs are volunteers who are consistently present in the life of a foster child and support them in school and the child welfare system. JC “Sometimes it’s just going out and getting something to eat and talking and that’s enough. They appreciate that time.” MM: Marine veteran Jose Contreras has been a CASA volunteer for five years and helped five foster youth so far. JC “I didn’t really plan on being so much a role model, but really that’s what you end up being because you are the one person that’s there one on one with them regularly and they do start to look up to you.”  MM: About half of foster youth in San Diego County have CASA volunteers or case liaisons. MM: Voices for Children says foster children with CASA volunteers are half as likely as their peers without CASAs to reenter the child welfare system. Melissa Mae KPBS News.

TAG: Voices for Children is a broadcast sponsor of KPBS.


Coming up.... What does public art have to do with sewage?

“Yeah, we may be dealing with sh-[BLEEP]. But somebody else can look at this and find something beautiful in it.” 

We’ll have that story, just after the break.


For the latest installment in KPBS’s series on public art… investigative reporter Scott Rodd explores San Diego’s surprisingly aesthetic wastewater system…where he found even the most unusual parts of the city…are flush…with art.

San Diego is home to a world-class public art scene. Colorful murals stretching across entire building-sides. Soaring sculptures celebrating the city’s heritage. But there’s a whole world of public art that thrives along the bowels of ‘America’s Finest City.’ “You have to look at something on the toilet...And so it's nice to have something to look at.” Artist Shinpei Takeda stands beside a public bathroom in Ocean Beach. The city of San Diego commissioned him to transform the restroom’s ceiling back in 2012. “The piece is titled…my memory on top of your memory.” It features quotes from famous authors…whose names appear on nearby street signs…layered over excerpts from local news stories. Takeda says a public bathroom is an excellent canvas for public expression. “If art is something that makes us think, something that makes us reflect, I think it can be anywhere. And where else better to do it when you're, you know, doing the most biological business” Takeda’s piece is our starting point…as we explore the artwork sprinkling San Diego’s sewage system. About a mile north is another piece…funded by the city’s arts commission…on a public restroom. The work…titled Pixelated Summer…is a collage of photo tiles…capturing the frenetic joy of nearby Belmont Park….and the summer serenity of Mission Beach… Jacob Bishop just wrapped up a morning of metal detecting when he stopped to consider the artwork. “It gives it a little style, which is what we have here in San Diego. It just adds a little bit of peacefulness, I think.” When you flush at these beach bathrooms…the water flows first to a pump station near the San Diego airport. Pump stations help sewage reach treatment plants…and nearly half-a-dozen of them…from the South Bay to Mission Trails Regional Park…feature public art. From the pump station…our effluent expedition continues to the Point Loma Wastewater Treatment Plant. “Yeah, we may be dealing with sh-[BLEEP]. But somebody else can look at this and find something beautiful in it.”  Richard Turner is a prolific public artist. He produced several pieces on the outside of the Point Loma plant…including a series of abstract metal sculptures…and an interactive section of pipe…the exact kind of pipe the plant uses to safely discharge treated wastewater — about 150 million gallons a day — into the ocean. “I thought, here I've got an opportunity to actually bring visitors inside the technology of the plant itself.” Turner has artwork on five wastewater treatment facilities in California … including two in San Diego. In addition to the Point Loma facility…Turner left his mark on the Metro Biosolids Center in Kearny Mesa. The Center processes treated sludge from Point Loma. The artwork starts at the front gate…continues in the lobby…and spreads throughout the main administrative building. “People see it and they ask questions. When I tell them what it is, they find it very interesting.” Richard Pitchford is the superintendent at the Metro Biosolids Center. He says the artwork forces visitors to ponder the complex process that happens after they use the bathroom. “You flush it, it’s gone. I don’t have the deal with it anymore. Well, we deal with it on the other end, and it’s actually a fascinating industry.” The dung beetle is a recurring motif throughout the installation. The bug eats animal droppings and then recycles nutrients back into the ecosystem…It’s a perfect metaphor for the Biosolids Center…which turns semi-processed sludge into fertilizer cakes used to grow non-edible crops. Pitchford says one of his favorite pieces is a series of little…floating…well, logs…on one of the hallway walls. They start out a brownish-clay color…and then slowly turn to a shimmering gold. “I probably walked by it several times before I really figured out, ‘Oh this is what it’s representing’...that you can start out with something that is basically someone’s waste, and by the end of the process, it is worth something.” In the end, I suppose that’s what all this bathroom art is about—finding meaning…and value…where you least expect it. Some food for thought…the next time you hit the head. SOC. 


And before you go… In last Thursday's podcast episode, we had the wrong date for Chula Vista's Summer Vet-fest.

The event is on August *fifth*.

We apologize for the error.

Some of the services that will be offered at the resource fair include V-A healthcare enrollment, toxic exposure screening and V-A compensation and pension.


That’s it for the podcast today. As always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. Join us again tomorrow for the day’s top local stories, plus, we hear from an artist who believes his work was removed from the San Diego International Airport because it questioned the value of the military’s presence locally. I’m Debbie Cruz. Thanks for listening and have a great Monday.

The hearing continues in a civil case against former SDSU football star Matt Araiza. In other news, as part of the latest installment in KPBS’s series on public art, we explore San Diego’s curiously creative wastewater system. Plus, veterans are invited to join the Chula Vista's VA Summer VetFest on August 5. More information is available on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website,