Sergio Joaquin Mendoza Arraigned for Carving Name Into Girlfriend's Chest and Other Abuse

Categories: Crime-iny

Courtesy of Santa Ana Police Department
Sergio Joaquin Mendoza punched, grabbed, head-butted, carved up and tried to strangle his girlfriend: OCDA.
UPDATE, MARCH 30, 12:33 P.M.: Sergio Joaquin Mendoza pleaded not guilty at his arraignment today on one felony count of kidnapping, one felony count of criminal threats, two felony counts of domestic battery with corporal injury, and a sentencing enhancement for the personal use of a deadly weapon. The Orange County District Attorney's office (OCDA) alleges that in addition to repeatedly punching and arguing with his girlfriend between March 17-20, Mendoza forced her to sit in his car while he was at work and threatened her with violence if she left. When he argued and threatened the woman again on March 22, he told her he would let her leave if she allowed him to carve his name onto her chest, the OCDA claims.

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Jackson Roland Westermeyer Cops to Posing as a Female Online to Get Lewd Photos of Boys

Courtesy of Huntington Beach PD
Jackson Roland Westermeyer copped to felonies and misdemeanors.
A 19-year-old man has been sentenced to six months in jail for using various social media to lure underage boys across the country to send him lewd images of themselves--and of having sometimes posed as a female to make the initial online connection with the lads.

Jackson Roland Westermeyer of Huntington Beach was also placed on three years formal probation, according to court records.

After Surf City cops arrested Westermeyer in January, Police Chief Robert Handy said at a news conference that investigators believed there were at least 50 to 100 victims--including at least one on the East Coast--from ages 11-17.

Westermeyer pleaded not guilty in Orange County Superior Court in Westminster on Jan. 16.

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Child Rapist Found The Object Of Her Anger And It's Not Herself

Categories: Court, Crime-iny

Sheila Sikat
Sheila Marie Sikat volunteered to babysit her sister's four-year-old daughter, used Rohypnol to knock the girl out and videotaped her husband, David Hwang, while he molested and sodomized the child on several occasions.

In their upscale Rancho Santa Margarita home, the Sikat couple converted alleged babysitting chores into a child rape and kiddie pornography operation that resulted in more than 50 recordings involving girls ranging in ages from eight months to eight years before fate alerted sheriff's deputies to the collection in 2003.

To keep the hope of potential freedom decades from now instead of a life without the possibility of parole sentence, Hwang pleaded guilty for a term of 50 years to life.

Sikat went to trial with hopes an Orange County jury would believe she'd been a victim too. Hwang threatened her with violence to participate and keep quiet, she claimed.

But the videos didn't help her cause. She had enthusiastic sex with her husband in plain view of the little girl being molested. At one point, she said, "Stick it in her butt." And, of course, she held the camera during the abuse that included sticking a pen inside an infant's rectum, and is seen observing the rapes without the slightest protest. The couple also can be heard discussing if the drug had knocked out victims.

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Hopi Indian Activist Nikishna Polequaptewa Fights Back Against Federal Lawsuit Claims

Categories: Court, Labor

Honors and accolades are plentiful in Nikishina Polequaptewa's life, but the Garden Grove resident and founding director of the American Indian Resource Center at UC Irvine might be in the battle of his life.

In April 2014, Blue Stone Strategy Group, LLC of Irvine hired Polequaptewa as a senior consultant. The relationship soured, however, within six months during a company retreat in Fort Lauderdale. His employers didn't just file a federal lawsuit in late November claiming Polequaptewa stole trade secrets and sabotaged company computer records. They also instigated a preliminary FBI investigation that appears to be ongoing.

But Polequaptewa, who denies wrongdoing, is telling a far different story in court. In his version, he's the victim of company bosses that won his services and then breached their contract by unacceptably demanding he must spend six days a week in Florida for at least half a year.

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College Students: Never Buy Textbooks Again With Help of Textbook Collective

Categories: What You Missed

Textbook Collective

If spending less than $200 a semester for textbooks sounds too good to be true, ask Santa Ana-bred Jeremy Cole about it. After all, creating a textbook loaning service that'd cost students $150 overall (and not per textbook) is the end-goal of his Indiegogo campaign.

"I personally feel like students are being abused by schools and publishers," Cole says. "We don't have to charge people these outrageous prices." During a conversation with a peer last October, he realized he wanted to create a safe space for students to loan and borrow books -- so he began conceptualizing Textbook Collective.

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Tim Hendricks of Miami Ink and NY Ink Opens Up About Tattooing's "Glamorous" Misconception

Derek Bahn

Ask a handful of OC's tattooers who their favorite OC-based tattooers are, and at least one of them (more likely three) will tell you about Tim Hendricks.

The iconic tattoo artist and current owner of Fullterton's historic Classic Tattoo is known for everything from his time on TV's Miami Ink and NY Ink to the designs he created in a collaboration with Hurley, but it's his unique combination of a traditional tattoo style with strong black-and-grey shading that makes his work stand out from the rest of the tattooing industry. Of course, if you ask Hendricks, he'll tell you that he doesn't have a specific style, because being a professional tattooer means being able to do a wide variety of tattoos.

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The Poet Runs the Home Stretch: Grant Hier's Tended, Untended Garden of Reconciliation

Categories: OC Bookly

This image of an old aliso (sycamore) tree, in fact the singular old arborial totem for our region is a rendering which relies on the human hand, with the mind filling in both the details of what passes for reality and of course, heavily, on the experience of the illustrator. The huge now long-gone "Council Tree" once living, thriving, occupying a large piece of land in Yangna, a Tongva village now called Los Angeles and, yes, in the imagination, speaks symbolically, metaphorically just fine on its own, but of course we humans like to chime in, calling attention not only to the tree but to ourselves, talking about it, living under its stout branches, using it as did the Tongva people once, not so long ago, as a geographical landmark and marker of their own proximity, to each other, to the tree, to the universe of Southern California. You can find a photograph circa 1850 of the old plaza area of LA at the end of a book of new poetry by Grant Hier of Anaheim, a book that is one long, lovely poem in which the evocation of this giant if absent sycamore tree, trees, rivers, deserts, backyards and the humans who have seen and lived with these is meant to cause us to re-appreciate the story of them in this place, and its teller's own story too.  

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Weekender Updater: Prom-Night Killer, Family Rapist, Santa Ana Slayers, Sued Plastic Surgeon

Categories: Court, Crime-iny

This weekend you are updated on Orange County prosecutors opposing the parole of a prom-night killer (again) as well as the prison sentence given to the rapist of a family member. Meanwhile, prosecutors have no issue with the prison sentences given to two Santa Ana murderers, and a plastic surgeon the DA's office once tried to convict of insurance fraud is being sued by a former business partner.

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Newport Beach Film Festival's 2015 Trailer Takes Aim at Global Cinema

Categories: Film and TV

Newport Beach Film Festival
Skeet Art
A clip audience members who attend multiple Newport Beach Film Festival screenings between April 23-30 will see over and over and over (etc., etc.) again--a.k.a. the 2015 fest's trailer--is now up, and it's artsier fartsier than previous efforts, which is quite fitting given the cinematic extravaganza's "Know New Art" theme.

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Buddhist Monk Commits Suicide After Being Linked to Theft of $97,000 from Congregants

Categories: Crime-iny

Courtesy of Santa Ana Police Department
Dao Nguyen was 44.
The head monk at a Buddhist temple in Santa Ana was found dead there from an apparent suicide--after becoming the subject of a police investigation into allegations he defrauded 34 congregants out of $97,000 for a trip to Vietnam that never happened, police said today.

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