Red Bucket Equine Rescue Moves Horses out of Huntington Central Park Equestrian Center

: Susan Peirce of Red Bucket Equine Rescue walks Harlow from Huntington Central Park Equestrian Center in Huntington Beach to the trailer that would take her to her new home in Chino Hills. (STEVEN GEORGES, HB Independent / June 14, 2012)

The married couple apparently plied the young man with alcohol when they repeatedly invited him to their home for board games, movies and hot tubbing.

A plea deal with Judge John S. Adams in August comprised three years' formal probation, counseling and 60 days of community service. Shepard faces two years and Davidson-Shepard four years in prison if they violate probation.

That deal did not sit well with the district attorney or the victim's mother.

"If my son's life is only worth 60 hours of community service, Lord help everybody," the mother said.

Despite a delay in sentencing requested by the district attorney in order to get some jail time for the couple, they ultimately got the deal they worked out with the judge to serve no jail time.


City Atty. Not Outsourced

It didn't matter how popular the idea of outsourcing got around the country, or across the border in Costa Mesa — the Huntington Beach city attorney was having none of it.

In September, after the city compiled a list of firms that offered to take on the city attorney's office's work, Jennifer McGrath told the City Council that it had no authority to outsource her office and even if it could, it would cost the city $1 million each year.

McGrath is an elected official, but the outsourcing would have meant the termination of her staff. She said there is case law stating that one government body cannot tamper with or dismantle the authority of an elected office.

When an independent attorney hired by the city told officials that if McGrath sued, she would likely win, they opted not to try to outsource the position after all.


Nike Pulls Out of U.S. Open

It may seem like a bad joke, or a bad dream, but it's been a while since the announcement in September, so it seems clear that Hurley, Converse and Nike, their parent company, really are pulling out of sponsoring the U.S. Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach.

They will be focusing on "other initiatives." Hurley and Nike sponsored the surf portion of the competition and Converse was the title sponsor of Coastal Carnage, a skateboarding competition at the Open.

Originally called the West Coast Surfing Championship, the event started in 1959. Nike, Hurley and Converse have been credited with turning the contest into the best attended contest in the world. It brings an estimated 1 million spectators to the beach throughout the nine-day event.

In a column from that time, Joe Haakenson wrote:

"The decision to move on had to do with a sense of accomplishment about the U.S. Open. [Bob] Hurley said attracting nearly all of the best surfers in the world to compete — as well as an audience of more than half a million over the course of the event — made the four-year Nike-Hurley-Converse era an overwhelming success.

"In many ways, we achieved the goals we set for ourselves at the U.S. Open," Hurley said in Haakenson's column. "Now it's time to export the magic created at the U.S. Open and invest it into other aspects of our business, like a renewed athlete focus and new and exciting ways of connecting with millions of kids."

According to that column, IMG jumped into getting a new title sponsor right away.