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KVTA Local News

OPD Seeks Public Help In Finding Oxnard Girl

KVTA News Thursday December 1, 2016


Oxnard police are seeking public help in finding a 4-year-old whose whereabouts are unknown and whose parents either cannot or will not provide information about where she might be.

Little Kimberly Lopez was last seen in on March 10, 2015 at a residence in the 900 block of Denver Place in Oxnard.

Investigators believe she is somewhere in either California or Mexico, but they have no idea where.

They say her parents, 31-year-old Omar Misael Lopez, and her mother 25-year-old Mayra Chavez Lopez, have never been able to provide verifiable information to back up their claim that she's living with relatives in Mexico.

Kimberly had been a ward of the court before her father qualified to take custody of her and her mother was granted supervised home visits.

Just after the custody case was dismissed and Kimberly was no longer a ward of the court, she went missing.

The couple is now in jail on a civil charge of failing to provide social workers and police with verifiable information on Kimberly's location and Oxnard Major Crimes, the DA's Office and FBI are now working the case.

Kimberly Lopez is described as a four year old light skinned Hispanic female.

Kimberly has brown hair and brown eyes. She is approximately 3 feet tall and probably weighs 40 to 50 pounds.

The Oxnard Police Department is offering a $10,000 reward to anyone with information that directly leads investigators to the whereabouts of Kimberly Lopez.

Investigators are requesting anyone with information on the location of Kimberly Lopez to call the tip line at (805) 200-2370.

You can call anonymously and still provide valuable information to help investigators locate Kimberly.

Two Alarm Condo Building Fire In Thousand Oaks

KVTA News Thursday December 1, 2016

(Photo Ventura County Fire Department)

Updated--Ventura County and Los Angeles County firefighters are battling a two alarm structure fire in Thousand Oaks.

The blaze in the two story condo building in the 200 block of Oak Leaf Drive was reported shortly before 6 PM Thursday evening.

When the first fire units arrived on scene they had an active fire with flames scene on the roof and the fire was spreading through a common attic.

They called a second alarm and brought in more equipment and personnel from throughout Ventura and LA counties, about 60 firefighters in all.

By 7 PM the incident commander said they had made good progress towards containing and knocking down the fire.

Ventura County Fire Captain Mike Lindbery reported that eight condos were impacted by the attic fire while six were protected.

He said no injuries were reported.

The Red Cross was also called in to assist the residents of all 14 units displaced by the fire.

Mountain Lion At Center Of Controversy Will Not Be Killed, At Least For Now

KVTA News Thursday December 1, 2016

(Top two photos by Alex Wilson, KVTA News.  Bottom photo courtesy NPS)

The mountain lion at the center of a controversy over a plan to kill it will not be killed, at least not for now.

That's according to the alpaca rancher who holds the permit from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to have the mountain lion known as P-45 killed.

Victoria Vaughn-Perling told reporters at her ranch on Mulholland Drive in Malibu today that she will not exercise the ten day kill permit issued to her by the CDFW.

Instead, she wants to see P-45 captured and relocated.

The CDFW issued the kill permit after complaints that the mountain lion had killed a number of alpacas and other animals in the Santa Monica Mountains during the past eight months.

That created a firestorm of controversy from animals rights groups and others who said another way had to be found to protect the community while saving the mountain lion. 

However, if a solution to the problem cannot be found, it is still possible that someone else might seek a permit to have P-45 killed.

Overnight Closures For Ventura Overpass Work

KVTA News Thursday December 1, 2016


The City of Ventura and its contractor Union Engineering, with approval from the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), advise drivers of overnight lane closures planned on US Highway 101 during work on the California Street Bridge Pedestrian Enhancement Project.

Southbound US Highway 101:  On Thursday, Dec. 1 from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. (Friday) all southbound lanes will be closed and traffic will detour off the freeway at Ventura Avenue.  Traffic control signs will route motorists along Thompson Blvd. to the Chestnut Street southbound 101 freeway on-ramp.

Northbound US Highway 101:  On Friday, Dec. 2 from 11 p.m. to 6.a.m (Saturday) all northbound lanes will be closed and traffic will detour off the freeway at California Street.  Traffic control signs will route motorists along Thompson Blvd. to the Oak Street northbound 101 freeway on-ramp.

California Street between Thompson Blvd. and Harbor Blvd. will also be closed to traffic on Dec. 1 and Dec. 2 from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. each day for construction equipment access.  Motorists and pedestrians are advised to take alternate routes such as Sanjon Road or Figueroa Street.

Vehicles from the 33 freeway wishing to continue southbound on US Highway 101 will be routed off the freeway at Olive Street and will travel east to Main Street, then Ventura Avenue, and merge onto Thompson Blvd. to the Chestnut Street southbound on-ramp.

The California Street Bridge Project is necessary for pedestrian safety and replaces low-height pedestrian railing with six-foot high 250-foot long decorative, lighted railing for a safer pathway.  The new bridge enhancements will help visually distinguish the California Street off-ramp as the highly-visible entry to our historic downtown and provide a more attractive connection between our downtown and beachfront.

California Street Bridge Pedestrian Project information is available online at www.cityofventura.net/pw/construction.

Missing Somis Woman Found Alive

KVTA News Wednesday November 30, 2016


(Photos courtesy Ventura County Sheriff's Department)

(Update-Sheriff's Department says Judy Wurtz is back home and recovering well)

Updated--The Ventura County Sheriff's Department has confirmed that the missing Somis woman has been found alive.

76-year-old Judy Wurtz was found around 3:15 PM Wednesday in the 6500 block of Old Balcom Canyon Road in an orchard.

She had been missing since Sunday afternoon after walking away from her home which is south of that area.

She was severely dehydrated, disoriented and in "very poor condition" according to Sheriff's Sgt Denise Sliva, but able to walk and was airlifted by Air Squad 6 to Los Robles Medical Center.

Sliva says that Wurtz was found under an avocado tree by an agricultural worker who called 911.

Wurtz has been the focus of a massive ground and air search involving hundreds of people since she went missing Sunday afternoon.

Slivas says Wurtz was found outside the search area between Somis and the western edge of Moorpark.

Investigation Into Alleged Rapes Of CSUCI Students

KVTA News Wednesday November 30, 2016

A student at Cal State Channel Islands is under interim suspension while Ventura County authorities investigate allegations by three female students that they were sexually assault by him.

The alleged incidents happened in September and October, two in on campus dorms, one off campus.

The allegations are that the women were incapacitated and did not consent.

They did not report the incidents to the university until earlier this month and the university made it known to students, faculty and staff in an email but did not disclose it to the general public.

The student under investigation is not on campus now and is not under arrest. 

No other information was released.

Search Continues For Missing Somis Woman

KVTA News Tuesday November 29, 2016


Night has fallen on the third day of searching for a Somis woman.

76-year-old Judy Wurtz has not been seen since she went for a walk near her home on Faircrest Lane early Sunday afternoon.

Her family and friends initially searched for her and then called the Ventura County Sheriff's Department around 6 PM Sunday when they failed to find her.

Since then the department has used every resource it has in an effort to find Judy who suffers from dementia.

Helicopters with infrared capability, drones, K-9's, bloodhounds, the Search and Rescue Team, patrol deputies, friends, family and neighbors have all been scouring the rural countryside looking for Wurtz.

Deputies on horseback joined the search Tuesday.

Temperatures at night have dropped into the 40's.

Judy is 5’8” tall, weighs 150 pounds, and has grey hair and brown eyes.

Judy was last seen wearing a long sleeved denim shirt and jeans.

She was not carrying a telephone.

The search effort will continue and anyone who might have information you can call (805) 654-9511.

28 Drivers Cited In Simi Pedestrian Sting

KVTA News Tuesday November 29, 2016

Simi Valley police say they conducted what they called a pedestrian compliance operation this week to make sure drivers are giving pedestrians the right of way.

It was conducted at 2:30 PM at a crosswalk that is not guarded by a traffic signal at Cochran and Heather streets.

A police officer wearing blue jeans, tee shirt and a fluorescent yellow vest, like those worn by a crossing guard, attempted to cross the street.

They say they 28 drivers were cited for almost hitting the officer.

Police say many of those cited said they didn't see the officer, some said they were not required to stop, and one driver said because of the vest he thought it was a construction worker and he wasn't required to yield to construction workers.

The compliance check was funded with money from the California Office of Traffic Safety.

Simi Courthouse Guard Arrested On Sex Charges

KVTA News Tuesday November 29, 2016


Simi Valley police say that a man who worked as a security guard at the East Valley Courthouse in Simi Valley has been arrested on sex charges.

26-year-old Thomas Platts of Simi Valley is charged with continuous sexual abuse and substantial sexual conduct with a female juvenile who was under the age of 14.

The authorities say that Platts befriended the girl through a mutual acquaintance.

Police say that on November 16th they received an anonymous tip about the relationship between Platts and the girl and immediatedly began an investigation that led to his arrest the same day at his residence on Jefferson Way.

Platts has pleaded not guilty to the charges and remains in jail with bail set at $150,000.

Because of Platts position as a security guard at the courthouse in Simi Valley, police want to know if he had any other inappropriate relationships or conduct. 

They are asking anyone with information to call Detective Nicholson at (805) 583-6961.

Search For Missing Somis Woman

KVTA News Monday November 28, 2016

(PHOTOS COURTESY VENTURA COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT)

A massive ground and air search continues for a missing Alzheimer's patient in Somis.

The Ventura County Sheriff's Department says that 76-year-old Judy Wurtz walked away from her home in the 5200 block of Faircrest Lane around 1 PM Sunday.

Wurtz, who suffers from dementia, was wearing only a shirt, jeans and tennis shoes.

The sheriff's helicopter, K-9's, bloodhounds, patrol deputies, the search and rescue team and drones have been involved in an extensive search for her all night.

Some 40-50 people have been involved in the search that included Copter 3 with its infrared system.

Temperatures overnight dropped into the 40's.

She walked away from her home and has memory issues. She is a white female, 5’-8”, 150 lbs, with gray hair and is possibly wearing a red flannel shirt and blue jeans. Please call (805) 654-9511 if you have any information.

The area involved is rural with many ravines, orchards and other open space (see bottom photo).

Major Injury Crash Near La Conchita

KVTA News Monday November 28, 2016

(Photos courtesy Ventura County Aviation Unit)

Updated--Ventura County firefighters and the CHP are at the scene of a major injury crash on the northbound 101 just south of La Conchita.

It was reported around 1:20 PM Monday.

Initial reports indicate a maroon Mini Cooper out of Washington State went off the roadway just north of the Mobile Pier.

The solo occupant of the vehicle was ejected but is conscious.

The NB 101 was shut down around 1:45 PM for Air Squad 8 to land.

Air Squad 8 landed on the northbound 101, picked up the patient, and airlifted the patient to VCMC.

Condition unknown.

The NB 101 was reopened by 2 PM but fire personnel had the right lane blocked.

CHP is investigating the crash.