Jurors in bubble wrap trial reject insanity plea

An insanity plea failed for Los Altos resident Laura Jean Wenke this week during the final days of her jury trial.

The 53-year-old Los Altos resident was charged with attempting to murder her husband three years ago. She armored herself in bubble wrap, used a stun gun to incapacitate him and stabbed him multiple times with a knife. Wenke and her husband were in the midst of a divorce and she attacked him at his workplace in Redwood City.


Giddy grads: Class of 2014 prepares to enter next phase of life

Photo by Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High students celebrate the milestone at the conclusion of their commencement ceremony Friday, right.

There were speeches with Harry Potter comparisons and references to Chutes and Ladders. There were plenty of selfies and the usual metaphors about journeys, lessons learned and the road ahead. But it was all good for the Class of 2014 as they said goodbye to one phase of their lives and prepared to take on the future. Following are summaries of commencement ceremonies held last week in Los Altos and Mountain View.

To view and purchase Town Crier photographs from local ceremonies, click here.

Los Altos High School

Families, friends and loved ones packed Tom Burt Field at Los Altos High School Friday to celebrate the Class of 2014.


Boardwalk bids farewell: Los Altos staple closes after 38 years

Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Patrons party at The Boardwalk on the Los Altos’ mainstay’s final night in business.

Los Altos’ go-to spot for children’s birthday parties, postgame celebrations and the late-night crowd is no more. After 38 years of operation, The Boardwalk closed its doors June 4.


Roads and sewers weigh heavy in proposed budget for Los Altos Hills

Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos Hills’ 2014-2015 budget focuses on roads and sewers and allocates funds to clean up O’Keefe Preserve, above.

During a four-hour joint meeting of the Los Altos Hills City Council and the Finance and Investment Committee June 4, the council reviewed a tentative budget proposal of approximately $8 million in expenditures.

“Overall, it’s a good-news budget, but the devil is in the details,” City Manager Carl Cahill said.


Chamber of Commerce seeks parking discussion with city

The Los Altos Chamber of Commerce wants to talk to the city about parking – or lack thereof – in the downtown area.

According to Julie Rose, chamber president, the organization aims to present at a future city council study session its own downtown parking report that calls for the construction of a multilevel parking structure. A chamber subcommittee unveiled the report at a meeting last week. The subcommittee includes Rose, former Councilman Ron Packard, property owner Jeff Morris and Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District Superintendent Barry Groves.


Jury finds 'Bubble Wrap' attacker guilty of murder attempt

A jury last week found Laura Jean Wenke, known as the “Bubble Wrap” attacker, guilty of four charges, including attempted murder.

According to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office, the jury deliberated for four hours over two days before returning guilty verdicts on four charges levied against the 53-year-old Los Altos resident. Wenke was also found guilty of domestic violence, assault with a deadly weapon and assault with a stun gun in the first of a two-phase trial.


LA Council Brief

Council authorizes civic center survey

The Los Altos City Council voted 4-1 May 27 to enter into consultant service contracts to conduct a public survey on and funding analysis for the potential construction of a new community center.

Councilmembers voted to grant a $25,855 contract to Godbe Research to conduct a survey that gauges public support for financing a new community center via a bond.


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