San Diego Man Sentenced for Killing Spouse in Execution-Fashion Taking pictures – NBC 7 San Diego

A man accused of killing the mother of his two children on the day she was about to deliver divorce papers to him learned of his fate in court on Monday.

Julia Maria Serrano Avila, 29, was murdered in a shooting in December 2019. Her husband, 28-year-old Fernando Avila, was arrested as the sole suspect.

Avila later pleaded guilty to first degree murder charges and firearm charges on the case.

On Monday, Avila was sentenced to 35 years in prison by a district judge in San Diego.

During the verdict on Monday, Avila apologized to Julia’s family “for having suffered so much pain” and her children “for taking their mother away from them.”

Julia Avila was shot dead on the street outside a pawn shop in City Heights, the prosecutor said, just blocks from the house where she lived with the couple’s two children.

The victim’s father described her alleged killer as lazy and not good. NBC 7’s Jackie Crea has the story.

San Diego police said at least three people watched the shooting. Violeta Marquez, who lives next to the family, told NBC 7 the first time she heard screams and called 911. Then she saw Avila fire two shots at his wife

“She was sitting on the sidewalk and I don’t know what he told her,” said Marquez. “And just like seconds he shot her again.”

Avila stayed and held her before running away on foot, Marquez said.

Witnesses said the couple quarreled prior to the shooting, which took place just blocks from Rosa Parks Elementary School and the neighborhood’s city center.

Sgt. Michelle Velovich said the argument started at her home and spread to the street and eventually outside the pawn shop, which is unrelated to the suspect or the victim.

The national domestic violence hotline is 1-800-799-7233. NBC 7’s Catherine Garcia sits down with District Attorney Summer Stephan to discuss domestic violence resources available to victims.

It was not clear how many, if any, of the shots the children witnessed, but they were in the house at the time. The children, identified by neighbors as between 8 and 12 years old, were brought to live with family members, SDPD said.

NBC 7 learned that Julia filed for divorce in November 2019. She intended to serve Avila with these papers, her father Pablo Serrano told NBC 7.

UC San Diego Well being Earns Excessive High quality Marks, Saves Medicare Cash

The UC San Diego Health Accountable Care Network improved the care of more than 32,000 Medicare beneficiaries in San Diego, Riverside, and Imperial Counties, and saved Medicare nearly $ 7 million by leveraging advanced population health technologies and processes to help Beat quality and cost targets in 2020 based on recently released performance data from the federal agency that administers Medicare.

UC San Diego’s Health Accountable Care Network achieved a 97 percent quality rating on performance measurements ranging from preventive health checks to the use of computerized health records to preventing avoidable hospital stays, Medicare data shows.

Parag Agnihotri, MD, Chief Medical Officer, UC San Diego Health Accountable Care Network.

“Realizing shared savings working with our network of community providers means we can reinvest those dollars in care coordination, information technology, and other care improvements to further improve quality and reduce costs,” said Parag Agnihotri, MD, Chief Medical Officer, UC San Diego Health Accountable Care Network.

“Our success in the Accountable Care Organization (ACO) program is another achievement in addition to our national and regional awards and rankings,” said Duncan Campbell, chief operating officer of the UC San Diego Health Accountable Care Network. “Our success is driven by our incredible providers who work closely with their patients to ensure smooth transitions from the clinic to the hospital, home – or, if necessary, a nursing home.”

The ACO is also focused on increasing the number of Medicare beneficiaries who take advantage of annual wellness visits, including recommended checkups and preventative measures. Integrating performance data into our network enables providers to share best practices and improve care coordination to avoid health problems and repeated hospitalizations.

Duncan Campbell, Chief Operating Officer, UC San Diego Health Accountable Care Network.

As a market-based solution to fragmented and costly care, responsible care organizations enable local doctors, hospitals and other providers to work together and take responsibility for improving quality, improving the patient experience and making care affordable. The Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) creates incentives for ACOs to invest in public health initiatives by enabling them to participate in savings that they generate after reaching defined quality and cost targets.

In 2020, 517 ACOs serving over 11 million beneficiaries nationwide participated in the MSSP and achieved gross savings of $ 1 billion based on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ methodology for setting financial benchmarks.

“Medicare ACO’s joint austerity program is the country’s largest value-based payment model and a critical tool in moving the healthcare system to better value,” said Agnihotri.

A fact sheet with more information on MSSP ACOs is available online along with other resources.

UC San Diego Health Accountable Care Network includes Perlman Medical Offices, San Diego Sports Medicine, North Coast Family Medicine, Rancho Family Medical Group, Imperial Valley Family Care, and dozens of other groups serving San Diego, Riverside, and Imperial Counties.

UC San Diego Health is the only academic health care system in the San Diego area, providing cutting-edge care in patient care, biomedical research, education, and community service. Our facilities include two university hospitals, a National Cancer Institute designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Shiley Eye Institute, the Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center, and several outpatient departments. UC San Diego Medical Center in Hillcrest is a designated Level I trauma center and has the county’s only burn center.

New Orleans-Impressed Restaurant in San Diego Goals to Increase Cash for Hurricane Ida Reduction – NBC 7 San Diego

San Diego is a long way from Louisiana, but a Hillcrest restaurant keeps the New Orleans community up for victims through a fundraiser Hurricane Ida.

NOLA On 5. – located at 3683 5th Ave., south of Pennsylvania Avenue – is working with the American Red Cross Thursday to raise funds for Ida relief efforts. From September 2nd to 5th, daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., the restaurant will donate 50% of sales of its New Orleans Comfort Food menu to the American red cross.

A Hurricane Katrina survivor who now lives in San Diego recalls the storm and worries about the aftermath of Hurricane Ida. Allie Raffa from NBC 7 reports.

You see, the co-owner of the New Orleans-inspired restaurant – Andrew Boyer – is a retired New Orleans resident and wants to do what he can to help after Ida’s devastation.

“Our thoughts go with those affected by Ida and the entire Louisiana community,” said a message posted on Restaurant Instagram feed.

Hurricane Ida left a lot of damage in Lafourche Parish, Louisiana – devastating buildings and roads.

On Saturday, a local chapter of Louisiana State University alumni will participate in the restaurant’s fundraiser; the alumni will also collect money for Ida aid during the LSU vs. UCLA soccer game from 5:30 p.m.

NOLA On 5th specializes in Louisiana dishes such as catfish, po’boys, Mediterranean style lobster and chicken. Jambalaya, Gumbo, red beans, and rice are also on the menu.

Ida swept through Louisiana on Sunday, leaving New Orleans without power.

To learn more about how to donate directly through the American Red Cross to Hurricane Ida relief efforts, Click here.

Hurricane Ida: What You Should Know

Hurricane Ida landed on August 29th – the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. A few days later hundreds of thousands of Louisians were braising with no electricity, no tap water and little gasoline.

Ida was the fifth strongest hurricane hit the US and its devastation continues to be widespread. More than 1 million Homes and businesses in Louisiana and Mississippi were left without power. At some point New Orleans fell into complete darkness.

The death toll rose dramatically through Thursday as remains of the Hurricane Ida devastated the northeastern United States with record-breaking rains and floods.

Police said nine people died in New York City and 14 confirmed deaths in New Jersey. Check out the latest updates on Ida-related deaths Here.

In the meantime, President Joe Biden will visit Louisiana on Friday to assess the aftermath and speak to local and state leaders.

On Thursday, the president spoke about his administration’s efforts to protect the areas hit by Hurricane Ida (as well as those affected by Caldor fire in the Sierra Nevada near Lake Tahoe).

“We’re all sticking together,” said Bide. “The nation is here to help.”

President Joe Biden described his administration’s efforts to provide federal aid to competing climate crises in the United States, including historic floods from Hurricane Ida in the southern and eastern states and the devastating Caldor Fire in Sierra Nevada. “We’re all in the same boat. The nation is here to help.”

For subscribers: Proposal goals to spend tens of millions in San Diego arts cash extra broadly, extra pretty

San Diego officials are proposing big changes to the way the city spends millions in art funding after a recent equity assessment showed low-income neighborhoods earn far less than Balboa Park, downtown, and La Jolla.

The proposal would increase eligibility in several ways, make the process more transparent and ease the audit requirements for small organizations. It would also remove the city’s “refund only” policy so that some art events could be funded upfront.

Eligibility would extend beyond nonprofits to individual artists and campaigns targeting goals such as promoting the inclusion of underrepresented groups.

City officials said the main goal of the revised guidelines is to expand the preservation of city arts funding and strengthen the city’s creative industries by better encouraging the growth of young artists and arts organizations.

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“There are so many young and new organizations out there eager to get funding to get started,” said Theresa Kosen, co-chair of the San Diego Regional Arts and Culture Coalition. “It will provide impact and justice.”

Many small organizations do not apply for city funding because they cannot afford to meet city requirements for extensive audits, or because they do not have enough capital to prepay an event and then spend months on city reimbursement wait .

The proposal would also cut the time a recipient must have been or worked in the arts to qualify for a grant from three to two years, which city officials say is more in line with other government agencies that support the arts.

Heads of local arts organizations praise the proposed changes, which the city council is expected to consider this fall.

Thus, by giving money to more groups and shifting some of the money to smaller groups, the proposal would reduce funding for many other arts organizations, most likely larger and long-standing groups that benefit from the existing system.

That’s because the proposal doesn’t include a general increase in city arts funding, which is typically anywhere from $ 8 million to $ 12 million annually.

However, there doesn’t seem to be an immediate backlash from the city’s most prominent arts organizations.

Peter Comiskey, Executive Director of the Balboa Park Cultural Partnership with 26 organizations, praised the changes as an important step in improving opportunities for those who currently do not have access to city funds.

One way the proposal would likely increase the size of the funding pool is to ban organizations outside of the city from receiving city grants for day-to-day operations.

That change would immediately affect half a dozen arts organizations in Chula Vista, Lemon Grove, and Poway that are receiving money from San Diego for showing more than half of the people attending their events live in San Diego.

These groups could still apply for grants to fund events, but those events would have to be within the city of San Diego. And they could no longer apply for money for ongoing operations.

The proposed revisions come in response to an equity assessment that showed Balboa Park and downtown received nearly 70 percent of the $ 11.4 million the city donated to arts organizations in both fiscal years 2019 and 2020.

The analysis showed that District 3, which includes Balboa Park, downtown, and the surrounding areas, received more than 200 times as much annual arts funding as District 8, which includes San Ysidro and Barrio Logan.

But the differences go beyond that.

Districts 1 and 2 – which are more affluent and ethnically less diverse than most other parts of the city – also received far more than any other place except District 3.

District 1, which includes La Jolla and its numerous theater and arts programs, received $ 1.42 million in fiscal year 2019 and $ 1.22 million in fiscal year 2020. District 2, which includes the Liberty Station arts district, received just over $ 1 million in fiscal 2019 and $ 904,000 in fiscal 2020.

If the art funding of districts 1, 2 and 3 for the 2020 financial year is added together, it makes up 87.3 percent of the total city art funding. In the 2019 financial year, this proportion was even higher at 91.4 percent.

Meanwhile, District 8 received $ 35,000 in fiscal 2020 and $ 25,000 in fiscal 2019. District 4, which includes much of southeastern San Diego, received $ 130,000 in fiscal 2020 and US $ 145,000 in fiscal 2019 -Dollar.

Almost all cities divert significant resources to large venues such as the San Diego Civic Theater and Balboa Park institutions as they are designed to serve an entire region. However, some critics question the possibility that San Diego is spending too much money on these types of venues.

City council member Vivian Moreno, who represents District 8, is one of those critics. Last spring, she called equity valuation a call to action.

Moreno this week praised the proposed revisions made by the city’s Arts and Culture Commission after many months of analyzing and collecting community feedback.

“This will make it easier for arts organizations of all sizes to benefit from city funding,” Moreno said Wednesday during a meeting of the council’s economic development committee. “We are taking the necessary steps to support inclusive growth and development.”

Councilor Sean Elo-Rivera said the proposal could be a model for how San Diego officials can change city policies to increase equity in other areas.

“A world-class city requires a world-class art community, and I think we have what it takes here,” said Elo-Rivera. “It’s about giving this talent the opportunity to breathe and realize its potential. That is definitely a step in that direction. “

Bea Zamora Aguilar, director of an Aztec dance group in Barrio Logan, said this week that she was particularly optimistic about the proposal to soften audit requirements and abolish the exclusive reimbursement policy.

She said most small arts organizations couldn’t afford a full audit. When making the refund, she found that she was still waiting for a $ 5,000 scholarship she had received for a photo exhibition that had already opened and closed.

Aguilar said she would have to carefully consider the proposal before she could declare her full support, but was optimistic.

“It sounds like it really is a step in the right direction,” she said. “As a small business, it is difficult to get visibility into your programming, so we all need the help.”

For audit organizations receiving grants, the proposal would create a medium level of disclosure. Large organizations receiving larger grants would still have to conduct audits. But groups with operating budgets less than $ 2 million and receiving grants of $ 75,000 or less could file a less stringent financial audit instead of an audit.

If the council approves the policy changes this fall, they will be used for arts grants in the new city budget, which will be approved next June.

COVID rental help cash nonetheless accessible in San Diego

The authorities expect an increase in requests as the eviction moratorium expires.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, California – A state eviction moratorium is set to expire this weekend, but the state eviction moratorium in California will last at least two months.

COVID Rental Assistance Allowance continues to be available for qualified applicants in San Diego County.

“Help is there. It is available. We encourage people to apply, ”said Jose Dorado, senior management analyst for the City of Chula Vista.

If you are behind with your rental payments, go to first There you can enter your address to find out where to apply for rental assistance.

“People need to know that they can apply. So if they are having trouble paying their rent, be it overdue rent or future rent, they can apply for this rent support, ”said Dorado.

Three agencies cover all of San Diego County when it comes to rental assistance.

Chula Vista is one area, the second is the city of San Diego and the rest is covered by San Diego County.

The money is available to low-income applicants, but if you’ve recently lost your job there is a chance that you could qualify as last month’s income level can be calculated.

“Suppose you were recently laid off, or you had a reduction in hours, or perhaps you had a health problem. Then you could use your income from the last 30 days to qualify for this program, ”said Dorado.

The COVID rental support now covers 100 percent of past and future rent through April 2020.

The money goes to the landlord and either the tenant or the landlord can submit an application.

“A lot of people are happy that they can focus on other responsibilities they have towards their families rather than how they pay their rent or whether they are evicted,” Dorado said.

Even if you live in a government home, you can still apply for rental assistance in San Diego County, according to Dorado.

CONNECTED TO WATCH: Applications open for San Diego County’s Rental Assistance Program (March 2021)

San Diego photographer accused of taking shoppers’ cash and never offering photographs

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – Several women accuse a San Diego photographer of failing to provide promised services despite receiving initial payments.

Lisa is an East County mother of three searching for new photos of her family. She stumbled upon a Facebook post from Lexie Cruz promoting her photography business.

“I hadn’t had pictures of my kids in several years, so I thought it would be a good idea to give my business to someone in the area and young and emerging people,” said Lisa, who refused to use her last name.

The bail was only $ 40, but she said after paying, Cruz’s communication became infrequent. “I asked her to confirm the time and place to make sure we were going to the right park at the right time,” Lisa said. “It took her a week to finally reply and she replied less than 24 hours in advance.”

Cruz never showed up on the day of the photo shoot. “We waited almost an hour,” said Lisa.

Another mom from San Diego, Jennifer, said she booked Cruz for a pregnancy photo shoot last summer. After spending hours getting ready, she said Cruz told her at the last minute that she had a family emergency and couldn’t make it. Cruz tried to reschedule the appointment later that night – something Jennifer couldn’t do.

“I’m not the one who canceled her, she canceled me,” said Jennifer, who also refused to use her last name. “I asked to get my deposit back … and it kind of got dark.”

She assumed she’d lost her $ 20 – not a huge sum – and let go of it. It was only after hearing more stories about Cruz from other mothers that Jennifer decided to take action.

“Back then, in December, I started filing a police report just to do my part,” said Jennifer.

Christine also hired Cruz for a photo shoot as a Mother’s Day present. She paid $ 45 on her bail. Christine, who only wanted to share her first name, said Cruz claimed she mixed up the dates. “I sent her a message at 8 a.m. and said … are we good for tomorrow? We meet in Balboa Park. Is that okay with you? And she didn’t write to me until midnight that she couldn’t, “said Christine.

When Christine said she was going to report her to the San Diego Police Department, Cruz eventually gave her money back.

An online Facebook group where people share their stories has nearly 300 people.

One bride in the group named Meagan told Team 10 that she signed a contract with Cruz for their wedding in North Carolina in August. Meagan said she paid $ 1,000 through a banking app and Cruz was due to be shooting engagement photos in North Carolina on May 29. After hearing nothing from her for 11 days and receiving no confirmation that Cruz had ever bought a plane ticket to North Carolina, she asked for her money back. Cruz said their deposits are non-refundable.

Meagan said she had to hire another photographer and didn’t get any money back.

Cruz sent Team 10 a video with her explanation. In the 14-minute video, she said, “Every story has two sides.”

Cruz claimed that people were spreading false information about her.

“I have families that I’ve worked with. I did photo shoots, ”said Cruz. “Yes, there have been cancellations, no deposit was refunded and I take responsibility for what I did. But I also can’t say that I’ve done a lot of things that people say I am. “

Cruz told Team 10 they had a lawyer but wouldn’t give a name. Cruz doesn’t name specific customers in her video, but she said she wanted to be transparent.

“The last thing I want to do is tell mothers and brides that I’m stealing their money and running,” said Cruz.

Cruz wouldn’t do a one-on-one interview with Team 10. She was not charged with any crimes by the San Diego Police Department. A San Diego police spokesman confirmed that the “case is still active and is being investigated by detectives.”

The Better Business Bureau recommends anyone hiring a photographer for references, having a contract with all the details, and paying by credit card if possible. The BBB also does not recommend paying the entire fee in advance.

Team 10 women interviewed said they had learned a valuable lesson working with Cruz.

“Notice some of the red flags because she originally sent me a link to every cash app available,” Lisa said.

“Be sure to do your due diligence to review someone’s business,” added Jennifer. “Everyone wants a lot, but sometimes you get what you pay for.”

Save Cash Getting a Cell-Cellphone Plan From Your Cable Firm – NBC 7 San Diego

You may have seen advertisements for cell phone services from companies that you normally don’t think of when it comes to cell phones. More and more cable and broadband companies are offering wireless service plans, and as Consumer Reports shows, these plans can often save you money.

Approximately 5 million people today get their cellular service from a cable or broadband provider who leases wireless capacities from large network operators and uses WLAN for provisioning whenever possible. It is a solution that can save consumers money in some cases.

If you already have Internet service from Spectrum or Xfinity, or one of Altice’s Optimum or Suddenlink brands, adding a cellular plan to the package can lower your cellular bill.

All three companies offer a phone line with unlimited call, text, and data for just $ 45 per month. And they offer flexibility so that you can sign up for individual data plans for each family member.

There are a few drawbacks to be aware of: Your service can be slowed down when network traffic is high, fees or taxes may not be included in advertised plans, and automatic monthly payments are required.

If money is tight, this could be a way to afford both cellular service and wired broadband connection in your home.

Tips on how to Earn Cash as a Native Tour Information – NBC 7 San Diego

If you were asked to give someone a tour of San Diego, where would you take them? The beach? Balboa Park? A secret place?

That’s the idea behind a website that allows locals to act as tour guides in their cities. Tours by locals is a Canada-based company that connects travelers with private tour guides in more than 190 countries around the world, including San Diego.

For the past four years, Marcus Peoples has shared his favorite San Diego spots with travelers.

“I take families, I take individuals,” said Peoples. “There is something about being with a local person. You know all the pros and cons. They know where to eat. You lived here. They know about secret places. “

Sara Cooke with Tours By Locals said that some people prefer to skip the large tour groups and personalize their travel experience.

“They love to go at their own pace,” said Cooke. “They love to be able to stay longer if they enjoy it, or they leave a place when they are not interested.”

Tourists can choose the tour guide they want to hire and they can follow the guide’s suggestions or help create their own tour.

Would you like to become a guide? Tours By Locals told us that they are picky about who to choose.

“They tell us a little bit about themselves, their background, they share some testimonials with us,” said Cooke. “They tell us what kind of tours they want to do. They then go through a video interview process. ”

The company said it is checking references and the guides are going through a background check.

Tours can last half a day or full day, and the guide often drives visitors in the guide’s vehicle. The price for a tour can range from $ 300 to $ 600.

For peoples, it’s a fun way to make money and celebrate the city they love.

“You get what San Diego really is like and how it’s being released now,” said Peoples.

Misplaced Cash to Fraud through MoneyGram? You Would possibly Be In a position to Get It Again – NBC 7 San Diego

Criminals use many different ways to steal your money. Bank transfers are a common method of asking you to send them money that is almost impossible to reclaim. Now, a new MoneyGram agreement with the FTC gives people a chance to try and get some of their money back.

“It has allowed people to get their money quickly and remain anonymous,” said Todd Kossow, the FTC regional director.

In 2009, MoneyGram reached a settlement with the FTC to make it more difficult for criminals to use its services.

“It required a comprehensive anti-fraud program,” said Kossow.

The company should do more scrutiny of its agents, train them on signs of fraud, and try to catch agents involved in the fraud. In 2018, the FTC and other federal agencies thought MoneyGram had failed to comply with the 2009 order. Kossow says known scammers are still allowed to collect money.

Now there’s a new $ 125 million deal with the FTC and MoneyGram. The commission alleged that MoneyGram did not do what it agreed to do to fight fraud. If you are a victim of a fraud and sent money through MoneyGram, here are some steps you can take to get your money back.

If you didn’t receive a pre-filled form in the mail but still lost money between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2017, please visit

To qualify, you must have made the transfer from the United States and used your own name to make the transfer.

You will also need to provide your Social Security number to confirm to the Department of Justice and the Treasury Offset Program that you do not owe any money to the federal government. If you do this, your eligibility may be reduced by the amount you owe.

The process is also slow as they confirm that people who apply will qualify. The FTC says it will take at least a year to review and verify these claims.

“We want to make sure that the people who get the money back really made these transfers,” said Kossow.

Here is a list of frequently asked questions about the program Here.

San Diego Considers Eliminating Parking House Necessities to Save Companies Cash, Scale back Air pollution – NBC 7 San Diego

If you think finding parking space outside of your favorite store is difficult, it could get even harder. That’s because the city of San Diego is considering letting some companies use their existing parking lots for something else.

Freshly Faded Barber Shop was full of customers on Wednesday; likewise their parking lot in North Park.

“We call it ‘No Park’, not North Park,” said Freshly Faded owner Derrick Banks. “Because there is hardly any space left to park.”

To make matters worse, the city is considering abolishing a certain number of parking spaces for companies. The city’s proposal will ease the burden of new developments, which currently cost up to $ 25,000 per booth and must have at least one space per 1,000 square feet.

The city is also pushing for more pedestrian, bicycle and traffic use.

With approval, companies can provide as much parking space as their customers need, or use the space to expand their showrooms or for al fresco dining.

Café Madeline hasn’t eaten indoors in over a year and benefited from additional outdoor seating.

“If this parklet didn’t take up two spaces, we essentially couldn’t have stayed open, so it makes a difference for small businesses,” said Café Madeline owner Christine Perez.

Perez also calls the parking space proposal complicated.

“We have some people in the community who actually park their cars there overnight because they don’t have parking in the neighborhood, so it’s kind of a double-edged sword,” said Perez.

For the time being, the proposal only applies to companies in priority transit areas that are within 800 meters of an important stop.

This does not apply to public paths that fall under the city’s open-air restaurant ordinance – now extended to July 2022.

The proposal to eliminate parking spaces will be presented to the planning commission on Thursday and is expected to be presented to the city council in July.

The city council approved a similar change two years ago, repealing parking regulations for multi-family housing developments built within half a mile of a tram or bus stop.