It’s been a roller coaster year for Culver City and for Culver City Patch. From heartbreaking murders and suicides to a new ice skating rink and celebrity guitar recoveries, here are the Top 12 must-read articles that appeared on Culver City Patch in 2012.
1. Decapitated Man Who Hanged Himself Identified
The headless body of 56-year-old Mark James Hateley was discovered at around 3 p.m. on Dec. 3 at a parking structure at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center at 12001 Washington Blvd. in Culver City. That same night Culver City Police Lt. Randy Vickrey said the investigator determined the death was a suicide by hanging.
2. Tom Petty's Guitars Recovered by Culver City Police
Officers charged 51-year-old Daryl Washington - a private security guard at Culver Studios - with grand theft, for stealing five of Tom Petty's guitars from the studio on April 14. Petty offered a $7,500 reward for the guitars that his band had been rehearsing with at the studios for an upcoming tour. Washington was tracked down after he sold one of the guitars to a pawn shop.
3. Suspect in Custody in Jack in the Box Death
Robert Perez Soria, 29, was arrested fter a man in his 60s died following an altercation with Soria on Jun. 29 inside the Jack in the Box at 5400 Sepulveda Blvd. in Culver City.
4. Robert Rainey May Have Been Killed During a Robbery
Chiropractor Robert Rainey’s body was discovered by one of his patients who arrived at Rainey’s office at 9225 Venice Boulevard on the Culver City border for a scheduled appointment shortly after 8 a.m. on May 31. Rainey's wallet was missing when he was found. Rainey, 54, was the brother of Los Angeles Times media critic James Rainey and son of the late actor Ford Rainey.
5. Expo Line Offers Free Parking Spaces for Cars and Facilities for Bikes
Along with providing the highly anticipated commuter trains, Metro is also offering several free parking facilities and bike spaces and racks to help commuters travel to and from work and leisure activities along the line. The La Cienega/Jefferson station has 576 parking spaces and 12 bike rack spaces and the Culver City station has 586 parking spaces, numerous bike racks and 8 bike lockers.
6. Amateurs Guide to the 2012 Perseid Meteor Shower
The Perseid meteor shower took place primarily Aug. 11 through Sunday morning Aug. 12, and according to NASA, stargazers could see upward of 100 meteorites flash before them per hour.
7. Coroner ID’s Body Found on Santa Monica Beach
The body that washed ashore Jun. 5 on the beach in Santa Monica was that of 49-year-old homeless man Paul William Nolder. The body was found by harbor patrol officers face down, partially buried in sand on the water's edge. Nolder was wearing a cycling jersey or rash guard and board shorts, and foul play was not suspected.
8. Downtown Culver City Holiday Ice Rink Debuts Nov. 20
Downtown Culver City probably isn’t the first place that comes to mind when you think of a winter wonderland, but thanks to MelroseMAC, the Culver City Downtown Business Association and Willy Bietak productions, 9300 Culver Boulevard – in what will eventually become Parcel B - will be turned into an ice skating rink, open to all. The 50 x 90 ice rink will debut on Nov. 20 and run through Jan. 7, 2013. Admission is just $10 and kids 12 and under, $6. Skate rental is $4.
9. Car Chase Suspects Surrender in Culver City
LAPD officers took into custody Jun 1 two suspects who allegedly stole a car and crashed into another on Venice Boulevard before fleeing on foot. The pursuit started in Santa Monica, with Santa Monica College Police Department officers following the suspects, who allegedly stole the vehicle in North Hollywood.
10. Make a Pinhole Projector to View Transit of Venus
Public Relations Manager of the American Academy of Ophthalmology Christine Douglass recommended watching the Jun. 5 transit at a planetarium or a program by a university astronomy department or by visiting NASA's website for the live-streaming broadcast. However, if you wanted to go the do-it-yourself route, you could make a pinhole camera. Los Altos Patch editor L.A. Chung explainedhow she made the following, simple pinhole projector:
11. Public School 310 Restaurant Opening this Fall in Culver City
Public School 310, a full-service restaurant/bar concept focusing on “an education in the art of beer and food,” opened Dec. 10 in downtown Culver City, replacing Fraiche.
12. Who Has Culver City’s Best Burger?
We compiled readers' nominations and put together a poll and asked you to vote.