SHERIFF’S CHECKPOINT IN TWENTYNINE PALMS TONIGHT

The Twentynine Palms Police Department will be conducting a DUI/Drivers License Checkpoint this Saturday, August 23, between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m. at an undisclosed location. Officers will be contacting drivers passing through the checkpoint and looking for signs of alcohol or drug impairment. Officers will also check drivers for proper licensing and will strive to delay motorists only momentarily. Drivers caught driving impaired can expect jail, license suspension, and insurance increases, as well as fines, fees, DUI classes and other expenses that can exceed $10,000. If you see a drunk driver, call 9-1-1 to report them.

DRUG RAID FOLLOWUP INFORMATION RELEASED

The Sheriff’s Department has released additional information about the drug raids in the Morongo Basin Wednesday. More than 5,500 marijuana plants and 14 people were arrested in two days in nine locations in Landers and Joshua Tree, with related search warrants issued in Bloomington and Helendale. The Sheriff’s Department reports that the suspects were using fake medical marijuana IDs in an attempt to deceive law enforcement personnel into thinking the marijuana grows were legitimate. But all the marijuana grows were large outdoor operations in unsecured fenced-in areas, and were not in compliance with medical marijuana laws. Search warrants were served in the 67000 block of Daisy Lane in Joshua Tree, where 779 marijuana plants and two pounds of processed pot were seized, and Carlos Gonzales, Angie Colindrez, Manuel Perez, and Andres Marquez were arrested. In Landers, 95 plants were seized in the 500 block of Lambert Road and Thonekeo Sounannavong was arrested; 403 plants seized in the 100 block of Bowman Trail, with Alex Aphayboun arrested; 1,579 plants seized in the 1000 block of Yucca Mesa Road, and Xayadeth Kayavong and Athith Kayavong were arrested; 556 pot plants were seized in the 59200 block of Reche Road and Phouthone Khaithianthong was arrested; and 30 plants, 34 pound of processed marijuana and 73 hydrocodone pills were seized, with Lee Callan, 58, of the 5700 block of Linn Road arrested. Evidence from these raids led investigators to two locations in Helendale where 2,065 plants, 136 ½ pounds of processed marijuana, and a .45 caliber handgun and two sawed-off shotgun were seized. Arrested in Helendale were Aquilino Villasenor, Roberto Zavala and Manuel Madrigal-Castillo.

SPOUSE ABUSE ARRESTS IN 29P

Two people were arrested Thursday in separate incidents for felony spouse abuse. According to a Sheriff’s report, shortly after 11 a.m. Thursday, deputies were called to the 6600 block of Mojave Avenue in Twentynine Palms where they were told that James Bermudez, 36, had assaulted his fiancée on Wednesday. Deputies determined that after an argument, Bermudez pushed the woman to the ground, which caused her to hit her head and split it open. After an investigation, James Bermudez was arrested on suspicion of felony spouse abuse. He was booked and released about 7:30 p.m. Thursday on $50,000 bail.

Then about 6:30 p.m., the Combat Center’s military police called deputies to report that a man had come to their office on the base to report that his wife had beaten him and he had two bite marks from the assaults. After an investigation, Kimberly Reyes, 19, of the 73900 block of Two Mile Road, was arrested on suspicion of felony spouse abuse. Kimberly Reyes was booked at the West Valley Detention Center with her bail set at $50,000.

SKY’S THE LIMIT STAR PARTY

Sky’s the Limit observatory and Nature Center in Twentynine Palms invite you to enjoy the summer sky this Saturday night. Reporter Taylor Thacker gets out her celestron……

The public is invited to enjoy spectacles of the summer sky on Saturday, August 23 at Sky’s the Limit Observatory and Nature Center. Summer spectacles include some of the brightest clusters and nebulae such as the Lagoon Nebula and the Wild Duck Cluster. Also, these are the last few weeks for good viewing of Mars and Saturn. This time of year also marks the return of the Andromeda Galaxy, the brightest galaxy in the sky.   Guests are invited to bring their own binoculars and telescopes. Everyone should dress for unpredictable desert weather and bring snacks, water bottles, and chairs. This event is free and runs from 8:00pm to 2:00am. For more information call 760-365-7897.

LOCAL ROLLER DERBY TEAM IN HOME BOUT TONIGHT

Tonight, Saturday, August 23, the Mojave Rattle Skaters Women’s Roller Derby team will hold their very first HOME bout against the Wine Town Rollers, in a Snakepit Showdown!  The bout will begin at 6:30 PM at the Rattle Skaters brand new skate track, located at Brehm Sports Park in Yucca Valley. Tickets are $5 at the door, children 10 and under are free. Doors open at p.m. Food and beer will be available for purchase, as well as official Rattle Skater merchandise!  Bring a chair and enjoy the Morongo Basin’s first and only women’s roller derby team in action!

LUAU DANCE IN YUCCA VALLEY

Say “aloha” to a special dance for seniors and adults in Yucca Valley tonight. Reporter Cara Conway gets out her ukulele……

Get a taste of tropical Hawaii on Saturday when you attend the Luau Dance held by The Senior Club and the Town of Yucca Valley. The event takes place at the Yucca Valley Senior Center and goes from 6 – 9 PM. Entrance is $3 for those 55 and older; $5 under 55. For more information call 760-369-7211.

CERT TRAINING IN YUCCA VALLEY

The County Fire Department is offering a free course in Community Emergency Response Team training.  It meets 6-9 pm on Thursday evenings from September 4th to October 18th, at the Yucca Valley Senior Center.  The CERT class consists of 8 modules containing informative sessions that will help you to be better prepared to survive a disaster, such as earthquakes, fires, and floods. Each class date will provide for learning in the classroom and participating in hands-on activities.  Participants must be at least 18 years of age. Each participant in the program will receive a CERT manual, safety helmet, vest, backpack, and survival skills to last a lifetime upon graduation from the course. Students must provide safety goggles, work gloves, and an N95 breathing mask at the first class – all of which are available for purchase locally. Closed toe footwear must be worn.  Space is limited to the first 25 registrations. Participants must attend all class dates in order to be eligible to graduate. For more information or to register, please contact Battalion Chief Michael Snow at (760) 365-3335 (email at msnow@sbcfire.org ) or Nancy Guinn at (760) 218-0151 (email at nguinn@hidesertstar.com).

COUNTY FIRE CAPTAIN WAYNE THOMPSON RETIRES

Fire captain and paramedic Wayne Thompson retired yesterday, August 22, from the San Bernardino County Fire Department.  Captain Thompson’s interest in firefighting began in high school in Lake Arrowhead, with a ROP class in fire science.  At the age of 50, he has 30 years of fire service credit, almost all of it with the County Fire Department, following a 2-season stint with the US Forest Service. In 2004 he was promoted to captain, and has stayed at station 41 in Yucca Valley ever since.

MORE CONCERTS ADDED AT TORTOISE ROCK

The summer ends next month, but the summer music doesn’t.  Managing Editor Tami Roleff says that Tortoise Rock Casino has added more shows…

Live at the Rock, the free summer concert series at Tortoise Rock Casino in Twentynine Palms, has been extended through October 4. The new concerts will include rhythm and blues, pop, country, and rock. Each concert begins at 8:30 p.m. HindSite will take to the outdoor stage on Saturday, September 6, playing sets of the latest R&B, hip hop and pop hits, along with old school R&B, funk and disco hits. Country and honky-tonk fans will not want to miss Brian Lynn Jones and the Misfit Cowboys on Saturday, September 13, playing country and western hits, as well as favorite honky-tonk tunes. A tribute to Van Halen captures the voice of David Lee Roth and the guitar riffs of Eddie Van Halen, in a not-to-be-missed performance on Saturday, September 20. Saturday, September 27, is a tribute to Journey, who will transport listeners back to the ’80s. Finishing off the Live at the Rock Free Summer Concert Series on Saturday, October 4 will be a tribute to Bon Jovi, featuring all of their rock hits.

Reporting for Z107.7, this is managing editor Tami Roleff.

ANDY PATEL EARNS BROKER’S LICENSE

Jeffrey Poland, Broker at Coldwell Banker Roadrunner Realty announced that Andy Patel has earned Real Estate Broker’s License. He has fulfilled all qualification for Experience, Education, State Exam and California Bureau of Real Estate’s Licensing process.  Patel has been affiliated with Coldwell Banker Roadrunner Realty since 2011.  While at Roadrunner Realty, Patel was Top Producing Agent for year 2013, and has earned several real estate-related certifications.  A native of India and a graduate of Master of Commerce from Gujarat University, Andy Patel has been living in Morongo Basin since 1998. (Coldwell Banker Roadrunner Realty is located at 7293 Dumosa Ave, Suite 2, Yucca Valley, CA 92284,, can be reached at (760) 365-8880. )