Crime

Ghost Ship jury deadlocks on Derick Almena verdict; acquits Max Harris

The jury considering allegations against two men connected with the 2016 Ghost Ship fire reached a verdict on Thursday afternoon, acquitting Max Harris, a former tenant and creative director of the Ghost Ship, of 36 counts of involuntary manslaughter. But after the jury deadlocked, Judge Trina Thompson declared a mistrial regarding identical charges against Derick Almena, the Ghost Ship’s primary leaseholder, who now faces a possible second trial.  The fire broke out on December 2, 2016, at a party at the…

Oakland police prepare to crack down on sideshows

The Oakland Police Department (OPD) has increased its response following recent sideshow activity. Last Sunday, a large contingent of law enforcement officers took the streets to combat the illegal gatherings, which are informal demonstrations of automotive stunts, often held in vacant lots or in public intersections. This weekend, they will do the same. Officers will be accompanied by air support along with regional law enforcement partners, teaming up to deter sideshow participation by issuing citations, making arrests and towing vehicles….

Oakland Diocese releases information on sexual abuse, but victim advocates are skeptical

Fifteen years ago, Dan McNevin and two other men sued the Roman Catholic Diocese of Oakland, alleging that a priest at a church in Niles had abused them as children. At first, McNevin felt validated. It seemed like he might finally get justice and hold the diocese accountable. As he told the press at the time, going public and confronting what had happened seemed like the only way to move forward. Then the backlash followed. “I was ridiculed. I was…

Dream Beyond Bars report offers a new way to study the effects of youth incarceration

About two years ago, when Xochtil Larios was in Alameda County Juvenile Hall in San Leandro, she decided to do more than just participate in classes and programs. “I didn’t feel like it was enough for me. I felt like the girls in there deserved better,” she said. During a session on vision boarding, Larios met staff members from Communities United for Restorative Youth Justice (CURYJ), an Oakland nonprofit that works to empower young people affected by the criminal justice…