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Pedestrian deaths increase; flu sidelines Dodgers in training; conviction in 2001 murder

Eastside Review
EDITED by BARRY LANK

A recap of some of the past week’s scenes, sightings and stories from across the Eastside.

  • The number of pedestrians killed in traffic collisions during 2016 and 2017 soared 80% despite Mayor Garcetti’s high-profile program to put an end to such deaths on city streets. Pedestrian deaths in 2017 alone totaled 134 – the highest tally in 15 years. Meanwhile, traffic fatalities overall, including people in vehicles and motorcyclists, declined 7%, well below the reduction officials has targeted. L.A. Times
  • Flu-like symptoms hit nearly half of the 55 players at the Dodger training camp in Arizona. The ill players have been sent home. Meanwhile, the team has brought in an air-filtration system and disinfected the clubhouse, as some of the remaining players walk around with surgical masks. NBC4
  • Another tiny earthquake rattled Echo Park and Silver Lake last weekend — at least the third micro-quake in a little more than a week. The 1.6-magnitude shift was centered near the south end of the Silver Lake Reservoir. The Eastsider
  • A drug dealer was convicted in the 2001 murder of a 13-year-old runaway who was raped and shot in Elysian Park, where her body was found by a hiker. Prosecutors said Jorge Palacios, a member of the notorious Mara Salvatrucha gang, told gang members to “get rid” of Jacqueline Piazza after she was beaten in Westlake. Palacios faces life in prison without parole. Trials are also being held for three other suspects believed to be involved in the killing. L.A. Times
  • Metro’s board voted in favor of pursuing more modest changes to the 710 Freeway for now instead of widening the roadway to deal with heavy truck traffic. Widening the freeway would cost $6 billion and displace about 400 residents and 158 businesses. L.A. Times &  My News LA
  • A woman a wheelchair was rescued after a backhouse in the 4500 block of Lowell Avenue in El Sereno caught fire on Saturday night. The woman suffered moderate facial burns and other injuries. NBC 4 & LAFD
  • One man was killed and another injured after being struck by a minivan last weekend while on a sidewalk outside a doughnut shop on Beverly Boulevard and Alvarado Street. Driver Abel Paredes, 41, who police said they believe was driving under the influence of alcohol, was arrested and booked on suspicion of gross vehicular manslaughter. ABC 7
  • The overhaul of the landmark Glendale-Hyperion bridge is going to cost more than originally estimated and be completed well beyond the initial schedule. The Eastsider
  • A car that belonged to legendary aviator Amelia Earhart has been recovered in El Sereno, after being reported stolen from an industrial center in Orange County. The 1932 Hudson Essex Terraplane, which has a value of at least $250,000, was found on the street near Alhambra Avenue and Lombardy Boulevard. CBS 2
  • As you watch native flora start blooming on a heretofore undeveloped hillside on Occidental College, you can thank a 20-year-old biology major from Lincoln Heights, who’s leading the campus’s Food, Energy and Sustainability Team to restore the area. The Eastsider
  • The Department of Transportation will change the speed limit on 146 miles of city streets as part of ongoing efforts to reduce collisions and fatalities. However, much of the change involves raising speed limits, not lowering them, based on department surveys. The surveys of average traffic speeds and newly posted speed signs will allow officers to use radar guns and other technology to catch speeders. KTLA
  • Take a closer look at the details, design and size of  the approximately million-square-foot development that would replace the former Metropolitan Water District campus just east of Echo Park . Plans  include a 49-story skyscraper, a hotel, shops, restaurants and nearly 800 residential units for the 1100 block of Sunset Boulevard. The Eastsider
  • A new fleet of swan-shaped boats have set sail on Echo Park Lake, with the new pedal boat operator preparing for a grand opening. The larger version of the swan boats can carry up to five passengers or 1,400 pounds. The Eastsider
  • Comedian Marc Maron is moving to new and larger digs, after having produced 900 episodes of his WTF podcast in his Highland Park. But don’t worry, Maron, who interviewed Barack Obama during one show, will be recording podcasts in a different garage in a larger, two-story Craftsman home 10-minutes away from his current location. What prompted the change? “It started to look like a sad roadside attraction,” Maron told the New York Times of his crowded garage. “Dust and cobwebs. People were going to be like: This is weird and gross.” New York Times
  • If you had $12.5 million to improve Elysian Park, what would you do first? A new soccer field in Solano Canyon? Maybe a new dog park and picnic area near a grove of carob trees? The city’s parks department is working out its priorities for possible improvements, holding a public meeting about the $12.5 million, which is coming from the L.A. Department of Water and Power. The Eastsider
  • City officials are struggling to deal with a costly program that allows police officers and firefighters to receive a pension and salary for five years. It turns out the City Council and Mayor Eric Garcetti were advised to get rid of the program two years ago but ignored the recommendation. The program was intended to help retain experienced employees. But instead of staying on the job, about 1,200 employees in the program went on injury leave, some of them for years. L.A. Times
  • A man who had become stranded in the L.A. River in Atwater Village during Friday’s rains was rescued by the L.A. Fire Department. He was treated at the scene. NBC 4

Picture of the Week

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Shopping Cart & Bike Rider, East Los Angeles | Aurelio Jose Barrera

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