Wed03042015

News

Council considers freezing First St. development

Council considers freezing First St. development


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
A pedestrian walks along First Street in downtown Los Altos last week. Future construction on the street could soon be barred by an emergency moratorium on development.

Further construction along First Street could be t...

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Schools

Former NFL player huddles with Blach students about life choices

Former NFL player huddles with Blach students about life choices


Ellie Van HOutte/Town Crier
Former NFL tight end Eason Ramson visited with Blach Intermediate School students, Feb. 13 to share the perils of drug use. Now a motivational speaker, Ramson works with at-risk teens in San Francisco.

Although former ...

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Community

Music for Minors partners with Harvard to expand efforts

Music for Minors partners with Harvard to expand efforts


Palmer

When the thriving Music for Minors began to outgrow its capacity, the local nonprofit organization made new friends.

Beginning in late February, Music for Minors – a Town Crier Holiday Fund recipient – partnered with Harvard Business Sch...

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Comment

Dangerous streets: A Piece of My Mind

I’m driving along El Monte Avenue between Foothill Expressway and Springer Road at approximately 6 p.m. on a midwinter evening. In keeping with the “village feeling” of our town, there are no sidewalks and no streetlights.

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Special Sections

Lions, lambs and Cab Franc for March

Lions, lambs and Cab Franc for March


Christine Moore/Special to the Town Crier
Oven fries, a slice of feta cheese and the bite of harissa mayonnaise make for a late-winter, early-spring dinner perfectly paired with Cabernet Franc.

I can’t help but wonder whether March will come in ...

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Business

Los Altos scientist named Inventor of the Year

Los Altos scientist named Inventor of the Year


Above Photo by Alicia Castro/Town Crier; Below Rendering Courtesy of SST inc.
Robert Showen, above, the Silicon Valley Intellectual Property Lawyers Association’s Inventor of the Year, began researching his ShotSpotter technology in his Los A...

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Books

French novel

French novel "Hunting and Gathering" offers character-driven suspense


Anna Gavalda is a well-known author in her native France, where she has published six books, most of which have met with considerable praise and commercial success. Her fourth novel, “Hunting and Gathering” (Riverhead Books, 2007), is filled ...

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People

HELEN KNOFLOCH

HELEN KNOFLOCH

Aug. 14, 1920 – Feb.12, 2015

Resident of Cupertino

Helen Knofloch, 94, loving wife and devoted mother passed away on Feb. 12th. She was born in Vienna, Austria and moved to Los Altos in 1949, where she met Andy, the love of her life. They resided...

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Travel

Seoul of the city: Korean capital offers mix of old and new

Seoul of the city: Korean capital offers mix of old and new


Ramya Krishna/Special to the Town Crier
Seoul’s Cheonggyecheon public recreation space, above, features an elevated pedestrian bridge.

Seoul, South Korea, is a study in contrasts. Having grown quickly, the city is a mix of old and new.

Using...

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Stepping Out

TheatreWorks jumps into ‘Lake’

TheatreWorks jumps into ‘Lake’


Kevin Berne/Special to the Town Crier
Jason Bowen, from left, Adam Poss and Nilanjana Bose star in “The Lake Effect,” opening this weekend at the Lucie Stern Theatre in Palo Alto and running through March 29.

The TheatreWorks production ...

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Spiritual Life

Is your thought life sabotaging your spiritual journey?

My computer started having problems – there seemed to be some sort of malware running in the background. At first it was just annoying, then it began to slow down my computer, interfering with its basic operations. What is it doing? Why can...

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Magazine

Local events serve up family fun

Local events serve up family fun


Courtesy of Peninsula Youth Theatre
Peninsula Youth Theatre’s production of “Pecos Bill: A Tall Tale” is slated to open March 20 in Mountain View.

For families seeking a break from the daily routine, events abound this month and next in Los Alto...

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More trouble for suspected bank robber


The man believed to be responsible for a string of Los Altos robberies earlier this year has now been charged with an identical crime in neighboring Mountain View.

According to Cindy Hendrickson, Santa Clara County supervising deputy district attorney, 26-year-old Thomas Andrew Cronin was arraigned July 10 for the May 22 robbery of a Wells Fargo Bank branch at Cuesta Drive and Miramonte Avenue in Mountain View.

Los Altos police arrested Cronin seven days later, the same day he allegedly robbed the U.S. Bank at 1001 Fremont Ave. The additional Mountain View charge comes after Cronin’s May 31 arraignment for allegedly committing eight robberies in Los Altos, beginning in February. He is accused of twice targeting Standard Liquors on First Street and Co- merica Bank on Third Street.

Hendrickson said they were not able to charge Cronin for a second Mountain View robbery that occurred several days before the Wells Fargo incident – May 11 at China Café. The restaurant is located in the same shopping center as the bank.

“There just isn’t enough evidence at this point to be able to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt,” she said of the restaurant robbery.

The ninth robbery charge for the Wells Fargo heist, Hendrickson said, means Cronin now faces a maximum of 13 years in state prison. He would have to serve at least 85 percent of that sentence if convicted, according to Hendrickson.

She added that Cronin – who remains jailed in lieu of $800,000 bail – would not be eligible to serve time in county jail as part of the state’s prison realignment efforts. Hendrickson noted that Cronin could possibly receive a lesser sentence if he chooses to settle his case without a trial.

“Generally, a defendant who resolves the case before trial usually serves less than the maximum sentence,” she said.

Suspect doctors fake gun

Hendrickson told the Town Crier that a search of Cronin’s home turned up an Airsoft BB gun that police and prosecutors believe he used in some of the robberies. She said that while Airsoft guns typically include a red tip to differ from actual guns, Cronin went to extra lengths to ensure that his nonlethal gun looked like a Glock pistol.

“It had the red tip colored (black) so that it looked like a real gun,” said Hendrickson, who has prosecuted cases involving robbery suspects using BB guns. “Everyone who saw it thought it was a real gun.”

But Hendrickson said Cronin would not face an enhanced weapons charge, which carries an additional 10-year sentence under California law, because he used a nonlethal weapon to commit the crimes.

Hendrickson added that the case remains in the discovery phase – which includes the introduction and exchange of evidence between sides – and that Cronin likely won’t enter a plea “for some time.” His next court appearance is scheduled Aug. 7.

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