The year 2012 proved to be some watershed moments as news stories shocked, dismayed and saddened many in the Bay Area. The following is a list of news stories that demonstrated some of the low points of the human condition that tested the moral fiber of some big players in the world of business and politics.
Oikos Korean Christian School Shooting- Disgruntled One Goh walked into an East Bay Christian School and began shooting students that left 7 dead and three wounded in another demonstration of gun violence that stunned the Bay Area. The mass shooting placed emphasis on shooting deaths that have plagued certain cities in the Bay Area.
Homicides in San Jose/Oakland highest in a decade- Usually quiet San Jose ended 2012 on a troubling note with the highest reported number of homicides in a decade at 46. The city of Oakland claimed the dubious distinction of setting a record 131 murders during the year.
Fantasy Sex League warned by school officials-Moraga School District officials warned parents of a “fantasy sex league” that had apparently been operating at a nearby high school for 5-6 years. Points and scores were kept for sexual conquests and unsuspecting females were coerced to participate by peer pressure, alcohol and other intimidation.
William Lynch acquitted of beating priest-In a clear moral victory for sexual abuse victims, William Lynch was found not guilty in the beating of a priest who had molested Lynch and his brother decades earlier.
Alameda County Supervisor Nadia Lockyer quits in disgrace- In the backdrop to substance abuse and scandalous love affair, Alameda County Supervisor Nadia Lockyer resigned from her supervisor position. The ongoing soap opera scenario proved to much for Lockyer to overcome. The status of her marriage to California State Treasurer Bill Lockyer is unknown.
The Sierra LaMar disappearance in Morgan Hill-The kidnapping of 15-year old Morgan Hill Sierra LaMar grabbed national attention as the South Bay authorities consolidated one of the largest search parties in history. To date nothing has been found of the young teen, however her DNA was discovered in a suspect’s car belonging to 21-year old Antolin Garcia-Torres also of Morgan Hill.
Church allows registered sex offender to volunteer at festival-In a gross oversight that later infuriated parents of a San Jose parish, a St. Frances Cabrini official authorized a registered sex offender to volunteer at a church festival where hundreds of children were present. The official responsible for allowing this outrage quickly resigned rather than face the heat of their action.
Boy Scouts of America produces extensive files on sexual abuse by scout leaders- The Boy Scouts including the Bay Area organization suffered the embarrassment of having extensive files detailing the sexual abuse of many of its scout leaders. This included records detailing some of the most prolific sexual predators that appeared to have sexually abused scores of young boy scouts over the years.
San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi arrested for spousal abuse-One of the leading police officials in San Francisco, Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, was accused of the crime of domestic battery on his wife, Elana Lopez. The controversy is far from over as there may be a effort to remove Sheriff Mirkarimi from his position as sheriff.
Bay Area resident Chris Stevens slain in Libya-Bay Area resident and ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, who attended Piedmont High School and University of California Hastings College of the Law, and UC Berkeley, was brutally murdered by a mob which was later classified as a terrorist attack. The lack of security at this foreign mission was the focus of a scathing report by a government investigating committee.