At least two men were arrested early Monday morning following a high-speed chase that started in Landers and ended in a residential neighborhood in Yucca Valley. Just after 10 p.m. Sunday night, a man called deputies to report he had been robbed by an armed suspect. The man said his car had broken down on the side of Old Woman Springs Road near New Dixie Mine Road. According to a police report, a car containing Michael Riddle, 19, and Albert Villareal, 23, both of Landers, and possibly one other man, stopped to offer their help. The victim told deputies that one of the men lifted his shirt to show a gun in his waistband, and then the suspect took the victim’s car’s battery, along with two tool bags. The suspects then sped off southbound on Old Woman Springs Road. Deputies and CHP officers located the vehicle and began a pursuit that went into Yucca Valley onto Yucca Trail, Navajo, Pueblo, Santa Fe Trails, before ending in the Apache Mobile Home Park. Riddle and Villareal fled the vehicle, but deputies later apprehended them in the 7000 block of Mohawk Trail about 10:30 p.m. Albert Villareal was arrested on suspicion of robbery, burglary, and bringing a controlled substance into jail when he was booked into the Morongo Basin Jail. His bail is set at $225,000. Michael Riddle was arrested for investigation of armed robbery, felony evading with disregard for public safety, and violating the terms of his probation, booked into the Morongo Basin Jail, and is being held on a no-bail warrant. In May 2016, Michael Riddle pleaded guilty to an armed robbery of the Flyers Gas Station in Yucca Valley and was sentenced to one year in county jail.


The Twentynine Palms City Council tonight will consider a variety of issues ranging from wastewater management to unruly canines. Here with the story is reporter David Haldane…
Shared sewers and barking dogs.
Those are two of the subjects likely to dominate tonight’s Twentynine Palms City Council agenda. The sewers relate to a resolution urging the adjacent Marine base to expand its aging wastewater treatment facility to serve the city as well. And barking dogs is one of the issues addressed in a list of rules proposed for a new dog park at the south end of Knott’s Sky Park on El Sol Avenue.
Other doggie issues include leashes, licenses, biting and doo doo.
Tonight’s meeting gets underway 6 p.m. in the Council Chambers on Adobe Road.


As we enter a new year, we conclude our look at new laws that took effect January 1.
Employers are prohibited from paying women less than male colleagues, based on prior salary.
Companies, including Uber and Lyft, can no longer hire drivers who are registered sex offenders, have been convicted of violent felonies or who have had a DUI conviction within the last seven years.
The statute of limitations for rape and some other sex crimes has been eliminated. That means if a crime happens after December 31, 2016, the victim can report it at any point in the future and see it prosecuted; previous law generally limited prosecution to within 10 years.
Public schools can now expel students for bullying through video or sexting.
Licenses to carry a concealed weapon will no longer vary from county to county. State justice department officials will create a uniform license.
Smoking or use of electronic cigarettes within 250 feet of any Little League baseball game or other youth sports event is now illegal.
Every autographed collectible sold in California must come with a certificate that verifies it’s not a forgery.
Patients who go to their insurance’s in-network hospital, lab or other health facility will not face a surprise bigger bill if the doctor or health worker who treated them is not in their network.
Women can pick up an entire year’s worth of birth control pills at once, and health plans must cover the cost.
To counter a spike in opioid overdose deaths, prescribers must check a state database to see whether their patients also have received drugs from other physicians.
Want to save an animal trapped in a car in heat or cold? If you call authorities first, you won’t be held legally liable for breaking into the car.


The Soroptimists of Twentynine Palms will host the gala opening night of the tail-wagging comedy “Sylvia” at Theatre 29. Managing editor Tami Roleff has your invitation…
The comedy “Sylvia” will open at Theatre 29 Friday, January 13, with a gala benefit, hosted by the Twentynine Palms Soroptimists. The gala event includes a silent auction, heavy appetizers, and dessert at intermission. Doors open at 6 p.m.; the curtain rises at 7.
“Sylvia” tells the tale of Greg, played by Jeremy Volsteadt, who adopts a stray dog he names “Sylvia,” played by Amy Fangmeyer. His wife Kate, played by Ann Van Haney, does not approve. A trio of eccentric characters join the mix, all played by Theatre 29 veteran Kurt Schauppner. The production is directed by Eddie Tucker. Tickets for opening night ONLY are $25 and can be purchased from all Twentynine Palms Soroptimists.
“Sylvia” will run through January 29. Performances on Friday and Saturday nights are at 7 p.m. with 2:30 Sunday matinees. Tickets after opening night are $8 to $15 and are available at or by calling 760-361-4151. Due to strong language, “Sylvia” is not recommended for children under 13.


Free HIV testing will be available in Yucca Valley next week. The Yucca Valley Family Health Clinic, is partnering with the County’s Public Health HIV Prevention program to bring their mobile HIV testing vehicle to the clinic, Wednesday, January 18, from 11:45 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. The clinic is located at 58375 Twentynine Palms Highway in Yucca Valley. Free, rapid HIV testing will be available onsite. Morongo Basin Healthcare District services include the Hi-Desert Family Health Clinics with offices in Twentynine Palms and Yucca Valley; and LIFT Transportation Services, providing free, non-emergency transportation to medical appointments.
For more information, call 760-820-9229 or visit


The Morongo Basin Historical Society continues its second Wednesday lecture series. With all the details here’s reporter Rebecca Havely…
“The Antiquities Act and Our New Desert National Monuments” is the next lecture scheduled for Wednesday, January 11. Many of our nation’s stunning landscapes and archaeological sites have been protected through the President’s use of the 1906 Antiquities Act. The lecture takes place at the Hi-Desert Nature Museum at 57116 29 Palms Hwy in Yucca Valley. The lecture begins at 5:30 p.m. and donation are $5 each.


The Morongo Unified School District Board of Education will deal with a smorgasbord of issues at its regular meeting tonight. Here with the details is reporter David Haldane…
The fate of an abandoned high school is on the agenda at tonight’s meeting of the Morongo Unified School District Board of Education.
Specifically, Twentynine Palms’ Monument High School in the 72000 block of Hatch Road. On the table: leasing the unused campus to the Adult Education Block Grant Consortium for use in adult education programs.
Other items up for discussion will be revising the district’s nondiscrimination policy to reflect new laws prohibiting racially derogatory names for schools, athletic teams or mascots; updating its charter school oversight policy; and examining its relationship to such school-connected groups as booster clubs and parent-teacher organizations.
Tonight’s meeting gets underway 7 p.m. at Joshua Tree Elementary School on Sunburst Avenue.
When Ronald Palmer died shortly after being re-elected to the Morongo Unified School District board of trustees, the board voted to fill his seat by appointing a new board member. Tomorrow morning (Wednesday, January 11), the board will review the applications and determine questions to ask the candidates, followed by interviews. The discussion part of the meeting will start at 8 a.m., followed by the interviews at 9:40 a.m., in the Sportsman’s Club on Sunburst Avenue in Joshua Tree.


The Joshua Tree Clean Team invites you to join them and volunteer in the New Year. They spend one short hour helping to make our desert beautiful by picking up trash in our local area. Their next regular pickup is scheduled for tomorrow morning, Wednesday, January 11, from 8:00 9:00 a.m. The hard-working Clean Team volunteers will meet at the northwest corner of Hwy 62 and Sunburst. Grabbers, gloves, safety vest, and trash bags will be provided to make the job easier. Afterwards you are invited to the Park Rock Cafe for coffee and conversation. 
For more information:, or 909-224-8740.


The Morongo Basin Chapter of The Compassionate Friends, a support group for parents who have experienced the death of a child, meets tomorrow and every second Wednesday of the month from 4:30 pm to 6:00 p.m. at the Helen Gray Education Center on the campus of Hi Desert Medical Center at 6601 White Feather Road, Joshua Tree. 
The group is facilitated by Kristin Martin. For more information, contact Martin at 760-250-7295 or visit the Hi Desert Medical website at


Cookbook author and noted vegan chef Mark Anthony will come to Yucca Valley for one night only tonight. Managing editor Tami Roleff says the event will include a free vegan meal and presentation…
Noted vegan chef Mark Anthony will present a free dinner and presentation Tuesday, January 10 in Yucca Valley. Anthony will cover how a vegan diet can result in losing weight, lowering your cholesterol, and increasing your energy. Seating is limited, so come early. The event will be held at 6 p.m. at the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, 8035 Church Street in Yucca Valley. Admission is free, but donations will be accepted.


Yucca Valley teen athlete Sequoia Barrera is on her way to Miami Wodapalooza Fitness Festival this weekend to compete among 1,500 elite athletes representing 30 countries from around the world. She placed fifth worldwide in her age division and will go on to represent the town of Yucca Valley and the Southern California region. She thanks the many friends, family, and local businesses that helped raise money for her trip. If you’d like to watch her live, go to for the livestream link and heat schedule.


The Twentynine Palms High School boys’ basketball team defeated the visiting Xavier Prep Saints with an 81-47 score. Coach T.J. Stanford said a great defensive effort in the third quarter saw the ’Cats hold the Saints to 4 points while scoring 32 of their own. This brings the fifth-ranked ’Cats record to 13-1.
Leading the ’Cats was D’Shaun Barrett with 22 points. Abraham Bell had 16 points and 11 rebounds. Adam Bell chipped in with 11 points and seven rebounds. Javier Soriano had 10 points.
In high school sports, today, the Yucca Valley boys’ and girls’ basketball teams and boys’ and girls’ soccer teams will play Coachella Valley High School. The boys’ basketball and soccer teams will play at home; soccer starts at 5, basketball at 6. The girls’ teams will travel away to Thermal; soccer starts at 5, basketball at 6.
The Twentynine Palms High School boys’ and girls’ basketball teams and the boys’ and girls’ soccer teams will play Desert Mirage High School. The basketball games will be in Twentynine Palms. The girls start at 6 p.m., tip-off for the boys is at 7:30. The boys’ soccer match will be in Thermal starting at 5 p.m.; the girls will play at home, also at 5 p.m.
The Joshua Springs Christian School boys’ and girls’ basketball teams will play Desert Christian Academy at home. The girls start at 5; the boys at 6:30.