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September 26, 2006 | John Spano and Michael Muskal, Times Staff Writers
More than an hour after he drove through the Santa Monica Farmers' Market, leaving 10 people dead, George Russell Weller sat in a stark room at the police station shrouded in misery and frustration. "In that course of that one block, I knocked over those stands and hit those people," Weller, then 86, said the day of the 2003 tragedy. "When I finally came to a rest, [I said,] my God, what have I done?"
September 21, 2006 | John Spano, Times Staff Writer
George Russell Weller felt he was lucky that he didn't have to pass a driving test the last time his California license was renewed, he told police after he drove through the Santa Monica Farmers' Market, killing 10 people and injuring more than 60 three years ago. Weller, now 89, told police that he took a written test, but wasn't required to show that he could drive safely. "I lucked out," Weller said.
August 2, 2006 | Russ Parsons, Times Staff Writer
NORMALLY, those big ads on the sides of city buses are given over to new movies or TV shows. But for the next couple of months in Santa Monica, farmers are the new drive-by celebrities. As part of the Santa Monica Farmers Market's summer-long 25th anniversary celebration, Santa Monica city buses will be adorned with portraits of farmers market stalwarts, bearing the title, "This Is the Face of California Farming."
July 4, 2006 | Tanya Caldwell, Times Staff Writer
Lindsay Strachan hurried through the stalls at the Santa Monica Farmers' Market on a recent Wednesday, hoping to find some premium Rainier cherries before they sold out. A regular at the market, which occupies several Santa Monica streets twice a week, Strachan says his routine has changed since an old Buick LeSabre slammed into shoppers and toppled farm stands, killing 10 people and injuring 63 others. "I look around a lot more," he said.
March 15, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Authorities called off the search Tuesday for a third victim in a plane crash off the coast of Santa Monica this week that killed game show host Peter Tomarken. U.S. Coast Guard officials said they now believe only two people -- Tomarken and his wife, Kathleen -- were on board the six-seat Beechcraft A36. The plane developed engine trouble and plunged into Santa Monica Bay early Monday shortly after takeoff.
March 11, 2006 | Lisa Richardson, Times Staff Writer
Los Angeles police were searching Friday for the driver of a taxicab that struck and killed a 34-year-old man in a wheelchair. Jose Laboy, on his way home from classes at Santa Monica College, was hit about 8:45 p.m. Thursday while crossing Adams Boulevard at Palm Grove Avenue, police said. Witnesses told police that the driver of the taxi, described as a green and white car, possibly a mid-'90s Ford Crown Victoria, fled the scene after striking Laboy.
October 23, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Two small earthquakes rattled the city Saturday, but there were no reports of injuries or damage. A magnitude 3.1 temblor struck at 1:18 p.m. and was centered five miles west-northwest of Santa Monica, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. It was followed by a magnitude 3.0 quake that hit at 8:42 p.m. and was centered about two miles east of the city. Authorities said they received no reports of injuries or damage.
July 19, 2005 | Martha Groves, Times Staff Writer
Victor Fresco had high hopes when he attended a community workshop in March to sound off about the proposed redevelopment of Santa Monica Place, the quarter-century-old enclosed mall at the foot of the Third Street Promenade. But he was alarmed when he was handed some color-coded building blocks and encouraged to become a mall designer. For nearly an hour, he and nine other Santa Monica residents kept adding shops, housing, offices and parks. "Blocks never came off," the TV writer said.
July 3, 2005 | Cecilia Rasmussen, Times Staff Writer
When 17-year-old Verna Deckard and her fiance, 21-year-old Arthur Lewis, visited Santa Monica in 1924, Inkwell Beach was the only place they could spread a blanket. "All the rest of the beach ... you couldn't go there unless you belonged to a club, and we couldn't belong to a club" because of racial restrictions, she recalled in a four-hour interview for the Los Angeles Public Library's Shades of L.A.
March 19, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A judge Friday refused to dismiss manslaughter charges against an 88-year-old man whose car barreled through a farmers market in Santa Monica, killing 10 people and injuring 63. George Russell Weller stepped on the gas rather than the brake during the July 16, 2003, accident, according to federal safety investigators who ruled out mechanical failure. His attorneys argued Friday that he was not grossly negligent because he panicked.
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