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McKewon court hearing rescheduled for Jan. 9

Original post made on Nov 20, 2007

Judge Hugh Walker granted the driver involved in a head-on collision that killed 19-year-old Laurel Williams a continuation this morning, scheduling her next hearing for Jan. 9.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, November 20, 2007, 12:10 PM

Comments (79)

Posted by Stephanie
a resident of Happy Valley
on Nov 20, 2007 at 12:16 pm

Can you tell us is she out on bail?

Posted by Melissa
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Nov 20, 2007 at 12:30 pm

can someone tell me what time the next court
hearing is?

this just sucks! laurel was an amazing girl!
katie deserves to be locked up!

Posted by Janet Pelletier, editor of the Pleasanton Weekly
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 20, 2007 at 1:05 pm

Katie McKewon has not posted bail, her attorney Kirk Elliot said today. Her next court date is Jan. 9 at 8:30 a.m. in Pleasanton.

Posted by Chris
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Nov 20, 2007 at 1:35 pm

Melissa, please don't start the "hating" all over again, it is almost Thanksgiving and those families are both hurting, so give it a rest please...

Posted by parent
a resident of another community
on Nov 20, 2007 at 6:04 pm


Don't post unless you want the public to have their feelings acknowledged. You have no right to state what others shouldn't be feeling. Katie is where she deserves to be.....JAIL......Katie should have thought about Thanksgiving before she decided to get so inebriated and drive. Get with it, this is pain and needs to be deserved.

Posted by speaking the truth
a resident of another community
on Nov 20, 2007 at 6:36 pm

Hey Melissa and "parent"

Katie too is an "amazing girl", and if you did not pay attention she is locked up and guess what the whole situation sucks. However if you read what Chris wrote then you would see his comment to you had nothing to do with Katie - it was the families involved. I am not sure anyone was thinking about Thanksgiving that day so I think that the analogy of what she should have been thinking about is way off base. And if you really were close enough to anyone involved in this then you would not need to ask on a blog what time court is because you would already know.

Thanks for having compassion for both FAMILIES who are hurting that were not there the night that Katie AND Laurel (BOTH amazing girls) were drinking the alcohol that was provided to them at an all night party.

It amazes me that people put themselves on such a pedestal as if they NEVER did anything wrong in their lives. Reality is they just did not get caught or have anything tragic happen to them, but I can guarantee they are not perfect.

Again people this is called an ACCIDENT for a reason.


Posted by Chris
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Nov 20, 2007 at 7:29 pm

To speaking the truth - It amazes me too the people that place themselves above it all...I suppose if it was my child killed, my feeligs would certainly be different, but I know this, I would still pray for Katie and compassion for all the families...There is no room for hate, there is so much on this planet...Pain..yes, time to greive, yes...but not to hate on anyone..Chris

Posted by human being
a resident of Foothill High School
on Nov 20, 2007 at 10:19 pm

Just remember we are all human and we all make could have been anyone that morning driving....we need to remember that. They just happen to be the ones it effected.

God teaches us not to hate and to accept faults as well as not to be afraid of death. If we are going with God's beliefs then we need to follow his wishes. Laurel is with him, and I believe she is trying to support all involved.
Katie is also hurting and also needs support. If you are or were her FRIEND, then you are still there for her now. She needs her FRIENDS to let her know they are there for her too.
My prayers and hope for healing goes to both families and friends involved.
Hopefully this incident has affected some, and that is all the good we can get from it.

Posted by aaronw
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Nov 21, 2007 at 12:14 pm

aaronw is a registered user.

good luck.... please people have a great thanksgiving, you all have much to greatful for, even through this tough time. my prayers go to laurel williams family, and to katies family. she is a first time offender, so hopefully they will show some leniencey for her. chris you sound like you have a good head on your shoulders. i wish others could take a page from your book. good luck to all, and happy thanksgiving.

Posted by Another parent
a resident of Castlewood Heights
on Nov 21, 2007 at 12:25 pm

Katie absolutely deserves to be locked up just the same as anyone in the same situation...... This is not about hate, its about the law. To say that no one is perfect does not mean we are not supposed to be glad she is no longer a menace to ourselves, our families and our friends...

Posted by Cali
a resident of Foothill Place
on Nov 21, 2007 at 12:29 pm

aaron, she is not a first time offender and why should there be any leniency? (portion removed by PW staff)

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 21, 2007 at 2:29 pm

To "speaking the truth":

This statement <<< for both FAMILIES who are hurting that were not there the night that Katie AND Laurel were drinking the alcohol that was provided to them at an all night party.>>> makes a complete mochery of accountability. In one breath you subtly insert a pointed finger by saying "the alcohol that was provided. More accurately it might read "the alcohol that they sought" or "the alcohol that they acquired".

Your next breath is about having the Weekly put an end to this thread.

So you want to slip in your opinion (though subtle) and then shut down all others? Shame on you.

Posted by Another teen
a resident of Country Fair
on Nov 21, 2007 at 3:15 pm

the driver was out on bail due to another alcohol related offense when the fatal accident occurred-basically it shows complete and utter disregard and hopefully the jury will take this in to account at the trial.

Posted by aaron
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Nov 21, 2007 at 3:28 pm

i'm sure they will take everything into count. i'd say a plea bargin is her best bet. i wasn't aware there where previous incidents. regardless, of that, i'm sure she is messed up emotionally right now, and hope she doesn't just be made an example out of. true she committed a crime, true it was an accident, true if she could take it back she would, true they were great friends, true life choices aren't always fair, and true she needs help. she won't recieve help in jail. she will come out worse if she is in there too long. chances are she will go to prison, not jail. much tougher place to be. so i still wish her good luck. it's going to be tough. but i hope this life lesson teaches the right things out of this. not just for her but for everyone. no-one wants to lose family, friends, or even aquaintences. i know i have, and would love for it to never happen again. that is unrealistic. charish the people your with, the ones you want to be with, and those you can't be with any longer. life is hard sometimes, but nothing can change that. focus on the good things from the past, present , and hopefully future. it's the only way to heal. anger keeps negative feelings alive. good memories bring out the happiness i know we all want to feel. best wishes, happy thanksgiving.

Posted by Ace
a resident of San Ramon
on Nov 21, 2007 at 8:49 pm

Nobody said Katie wasn't troubled. Nobody said she shouldn't do her time.

That doesn't change the fact that it was an accident and it doesn't make Katie a bad person.

Please show some compassion.

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 21, 2007 at 10:54 pm

Ace - Have you read any of the long blogs that have gone before? Many statements have been made that Katie wasn't troubled and Katie shouldn't do her time. In fact, one claim was that Katie shouldn't have to go to jail because she is already punished enough having caused the death of and lost her best friend. It was rediculous reasoning but stated, nonetheless.

Yes, it was an accident, but you must acknowledge the many specific comments that fly in the face of your claims.

Posted by speaking the truth
a resident of another community
on Nov 21, 2007 at 10:56 pm


Here is part of the report from the Contra Costa Times:

A police investigation of the crash determined that prior to the accident, McKewon and Williams attended an all-night party where alcohol was served. - ATTENDED - WHERE ALCOHOL WAS SERVED

A 21-year-old Brentwood man was arrested this week on suspicion of supplying the alcohol at that party. -SUPPLYING - NOT ACQUIRING OR SEEKING OUT

The supplier was identified as Paul Stonebarger. If convicted, he could be sentenced to a year in Alameda County jail.


Police say Pleasanton residents Laurel Williams, 19, and Katie Amanda McKewon, 19, were among the guests of an all-night party that started on Oct. 19 and was fueled by alcohol purchased and supplied by Paul Stonebarger.


Brentwood man arrested as suspect in providing 19-year-old driver liquor
Crimes & Incidents, posted by Editor, Pleasanton Weekly Online, on Nov 13, 2007 at 10:33 am

E-mail this topic.
Print this topic.
A 21-year-old Brentwood man was arrested Monday for allegedly providing the alcohol a 19-year-old woman drank before she was involved in a fatal collision in Pleasanton, police have announced.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 9:23 AM

And since you apparently read into it what you wanted in the beginning. The reason to stop this thread was due to the HATEFUL OPINIONS about Katie and to have compassion for the FAMILIES that are having to live with all of this. My response as you have now been PROVIDED shows the reason that I did not say "the alcohol that they sought" or "the alcohol that they acquired". In all the reports they use the words "provided", "supplier", "supplied", and "supplying". And that was not my way to "slip in" my opinion, that was just the public information that has been released. There are so many people accountable for this horrible situation as in most drunk driving ACCIDENTS that happen with underage drinkers. I point the finger at no one in particular.

Oh and by the way you statement "makes a complete mochery of accountability". HHmm I guess that means you think the families were accountable? I really don't understand you now, that is just wrong. Maybe you should read that whole thing again because you got twisted somewhere.

Now Mac go enjoy Thanksgiving with your family. I hope that you have a wonderful holiday weekend. I dislike the fact that you attempted to make it seem as if I was playing the double standard "shame on you" game, but that was apparently your clouded perception, certainly not my message. I personally will have a hard time enjoying my holiday as I think about the FAMILIES that are currently affected by aftermath of this ACCIDENT.

Did anyone think about the fact that the Williams Family, the Mckewon Family, and the Stonebarger Family will ALL have one open chair at their dinner tables for the Holiday's. Why don't we all just say a prayer for them and wish them strength as they all go through the Holiday's to come?

Posted by only support
a resident of Mohr Park
on Nov 22, 2007 at 2:08 am

To the families suffering the pain of the consequences of this horrible event...My heart and prayers go out to you on this Thankgiving. My son, also a graduate of 06 was involved in a near fatal accident. His vehicle rolled 3 to 5 times on the freeway going 60 miles per hour after bieng "cut off" by another driver. That driver had no liscence, no insurence, and is in this country ilegally. Her "bad" choice directly affect our family now. My son has permanent injuries, but he is alive. I am so grateful this Thanksgiving to have him home from college...alive.

I am so sorry that Laurel did not survive and will not be with her family on Thanksgiving as well. I am saddened by her families pain. Unfortanely,I am aware at this point, that this could just have easily been my child. I'm so very sorry.

Our children are at a very vulerable age. These families who have suffered this tradegy need our heart felt love and support. No judgement, just a caring message of support.

Posted by Been there
a resident of another community
on Nov 22, 2007 at 8:41 am

Let's get a few things straight-
This tragic event was not an ACCIDENT. Accident is defined as: an unexpected happening causing loss or injury which is not due to any fault or misconduct on the part of the person injured. Katie chose to drink (illegially I might add), and she chose to get behind the wheel of the car and drive, this was a crash. Entirely and easily avoidable.

The fact that Katie was able to function at all with a BAC of .23 is amazing (portion removed by PW staaff).

Katie's lawyer knows the facts of this case, and knows that she is going to prison. He is stalling since any jail time she serves now will be deducted from her sentance as 'time served'. Jail time is much easier than state prison! You can expect for this to drag on for as long as he can get away with it, causing continued pain for all the victims.

Paul Stonebarger deserves the maximum sentence available if convicted. His conviction should send a message to the community that this action will not be tolorated. Hopefully the DA and the judge understand the result of his actions. He is lucky he isn't charged with being an accessory to manslaughter as he should be.

Drinking and driving is an epedemic in this country which is basically ignored! Over 17,000 people die each year in alcohol related incidents. That's 5 times more EACH YEAR than have died in the entire Iraq war! Many, many more than the highly publisized SARS, bird flu, Mad Cow disease, flesh eating bacteria, etc. The equivalent of a jumbo jet crashing EVERY week of the year! Why don't we see headlines daily in all media???? Why do people basically ignore this until it hits them personally?

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 22, 2007 at 10:16 am

I'd always thought an accident also had to do with being "unintentional" in addition to your definition above, so I looked it up.

Merriam-Webster defines accident as follows:

1 a- an unforeseen and unplanned event or circumstance b: lack of intention or necessity : chance (met by accident rather than by design)
2 a- an unfortunate event resulting especially from carelessness or ignorance b: an unexpected and medically important bodily event especially when injurious (a cerebrovascular accident) c: an unexpected happening causing loss or injury which is not due to any fault or misconduct on the part of the person injured but for which legal relief may be sought.

It appears that under this definition it 'would' be called an accident, meeting the "unintentional" nature yet including "carelessness or ignorance".

Clearly this was unintentional yet fraught with carelessness.

Been There: You are so right about the magnitude of this problem. Thanks for reaffirming a proper perspective on the subject of alcoholism. A jetliner a day??? Definitely something our society is in denial of.

Posted by speaking the truth
a resident of another community
on Nov 22, 2007 at 11:28 am

The lawyer is doing his job and what he is paid to do. Like any good defense attorney would do. If you were paying for his service you would hope he would do the same for your family. Reguardless of what the charge was.

The BAC of Katie was the same as the BAC of the man who was driving with his child in the car and struck another which that child is still in the hospital. It is unfortunate that anyone would get behind the wheel of a car in this state, but it happens far too often. We see it everyday in the news. Does that mean that all of those people are worthless. NO, it means possibly they have a problem. If you were to attend AA you would find that thousands of people have alcohol addictions, but as stopping any addiction the first step is to realize and accept you have a problem.

"Accident is defined as: an unexpected happening causing loss or injury which is not due to any fault or misconduct on the part of the person injured." 3 people were injured that day - one fatitally. Only one person would fall under the "not due to any misconduct on the part of the person injured". Lets not play the blame game again. NONE of the many people involved woke up that morning and said - today would be a good day to cause this horrific accident. If they had then you could say that this was NOT an accident, but reguardless of anyones past history to say that this was anything but an accident is wrong.

The examples that should be made in this world would be the ones that would get the most exposure nationwide. The Britney Spears, Lindsey Lohans, the people who provide them the alcohol and the places who allow them to drink it. What about the guy from 24 that just killed someone while DUI? David Hasselhoff's drunk video was all over the news -why? What was the purpose of that? We live in a world that the news constantly shows people in the public eye breaking the law, but they also show how there are no consiquences for thier actions. This our children watch and believe that thier fate would be the same. It would be nice if someone could figure out a way to get a message to all - young and old - that would make it where thier were not so many senseless deaths and accidents in this world, but until then we will continue to see sad situations like this over and over.

I woke up this morning and prayed for all the families involved that they would have the strength to make it through all of this. You better believe I will add them in my blessings at my dinner table tonight along with Katie and Paul who currently are dealing with the consiquences of thier bad decisions. This does not make them bad people nor does it give anyone the right to hate them or wish bad things for them. Let the courts do thier job and keep the bashing to yourselves.

Posted by close friend - the reality
a resident of Foothill High School
on Nov 22, 2007 at 2:35 pm

If you think you have the power of changing someone's opinion through simple text, you are mistaken. Let's quit the bashing and let people think what they want.
However, I would like to make a few suggestions/give a few tips for the parents. Your kids are not angel childs, they do engage themselves in unlawful activities whether you like it or not or whether you choose to believe so. Our society nowadays is so absurd compared to other cultures with all the sex, drugs, and alcohol that is so widely accepted. In the long run, it is up to the individual himself, not the parents, to regulate his/her actions and this is where responsibility/maturity shows. Before going off to college, my parents chose not to believe that i drank causing me to build a life of secrecy, hiding my drinking from them, even drinking and driving at times because I had no other way home. Now, if i am in town, they ask me to call them when im drinking so they can pick me up. I'm sorry, parents, if you feel helpless controlling your kid, but grounding's simply build up hatred and will not stop a teen from drinking, it will cause them to hide it better. Please, bolster your relationship with your kids as i wish my parents had done with me while i was in high school because you never know when an "accident" will happen. Let's face it, teens will be teens: driving without a license? it doesn't matter. Drinking underage? who cares. Drinking and driving? psh, home isn't that far.

Posted by Chris
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Nov 22, 2007 at 9:22 pm

To Speaking the Truth...Thank you, that was right on...It's so true, looking at the news and the people in hollywood, they get away with it, do a few minutes of time, show up in their "best jogging oufit" to do a little community service...what a joke...and their buts should be doing hard time! But wait Lindsey might have a movie set she needs to be on SICKENING!!! Yes, prayer for all, today Thanksgiving surely was hell for all families especially Laurel's and to her mom and dad I am sorry and prayer was said for you specifically at our dinner table tonight..Laurel is in His grace now, if there is any comfort in that, safe from the harms of this world anymore..god bless to all on this Thanksgiving day....

Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 23, 2007 at 8:25 pm

Close Friend...It sounds like you are a former Foothill High student, thanks for your posting. I have a son that is a junior at Foothill, we recently moved here from the South. And while I do agree with you that in high schools everywhere, kids are less than angels, yes, including mine. I also have to tell you that I am one of those parents who can have a frank discussion with my kids without being their best friend. My son tells me that your former high school is out of control. He told me that drinking and having drunk sex is the primary focus of the students there, I am thankful that I have a son, your parents must have had a tough time. (portion removed by PW staff)

It is my understanding that there have been several Foothill students in the last several years that have been killed or severly injured due to drunk driving as well as a disproportonate number of suicides. While I agree with you, that the students should take responsibility for their own actions and hopefully party in moderation, I have to tell you that the parents I have met in this town are pathetic. They think this is Housewives of Orange County here, adults in white bread Pleasanton are doing drugs and drinking themselves into a stupor and then they wonder why there kids do the same. They are so focused on themselves they have no idea what there kids are really doing and the sad thing is they really don't care. They think because they by their kids nice cars, give them money to party and sometimes even the place to do so, they can be the "cool" parents instead of being "good" parents.

Katie lived in an enviroment where the adults closest to her where her best drinking buddies, this I know to be an absolute fact. I have personaly been around parties before high school football games where adults then went to the game at least as drunk as Katie was that morning. This community is completly inbreed and blind, shielded by the lack of diversity and the passion to one up their neighbors. We will be here at least 2 years, we are looking forward to when we can put Pleasanton in the rearview mirror.

Posted by Treated unfairly by Pleasanton
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 8:12 am

To Resident, last comment. I have lived here for 14 years. Both my children when to school here. I am a single mom, work very hard, and I am a good mom. I have been treated so badly by so many white bread Pleasanton moms, who put themselves on a peddestool and look down on me, because I am single, don't own a home I am less them to them. My youngest has one more year and I to can't wait to leave. If you are not rich in this town, wearing the right clothes or fitting in with the "jones" you are pretty much a no name. Those people in Ruby Hills and other neighborhoods building their big fancy houses and sporting their fancy cars and spoiling their children to look good make me sick. I hope they wake up to these facts. And the kids, bless their hearts, if you don't have the right car,the right clothes you are looked down on....Sad, sad little Main Street town it is....Wonder how many of these rich people donate to "one warm coat" like I have, but I am getting off topic, and the truth is they spoil and ignore their children so they can feel good about their self centered selfs...I will be happy to go.

Posted by Robert
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 9:40 am

A young 19 year old girl was killed and her best friend is in jail and this blog is talking about being treated unfairly. My how we digress. Resident and Treated unfairly, it's not all about you.

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 10:26 am


Both of those responses were about the perception of parenting in this town...not about themselves. It is a relief of sorts to have someone address the parenting issues. It is very much about how ppl treat their own children (the spoiling and being their friend) and equally about the respect they show towards others. All of this is passed on to and absorbed by the teens.

Offering up this consideration is merely another dynamic of what may be adding to the subject of this blog (drinking and driving & partying at a home where no parents apparently were).

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 10:40 am

Drinking has always been an issue in America, yet maybe just maybe, this new age parenting of riches, excesses, privilege and snobishness has given our more recent generations an even more omnipotent, callous and "aren't I just the bees knees" attitude, lending to such tragic consequences.

I don't know...just something to consider.

Posted by "wealthy" pleasanton parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 12:35 pm

The stereotyping and bashing of the Pleasanton Parents in this town has gotten out of control. This is who you wish to blame for this horrible incident?

I've lived here for 18 years and I live in a "big house" with "fancy" cars. My husband and I put ourselves through college and with much sweat and tears managed to raise two "priveleged" and incredibly great sons.

One son is going into law enforcement, the other into emergency medicine. They may very well be the people busting and treating affenders and victims of accidents such as this. Like me, they will dedicate their careers to helping others. We raised our sons well, and so have many, many other Pleasanton parents.

You people have got a lot of nerve trying to blame the Pleasanton parents for this. If you compare the high school kids in this town to the rest of the country you will find that the Pleasanton parents are not doing so badly. There are stats available for our kid's level of eduacation, college acceptance, drug incidence and other crimes. I would look it all up for you, but I'll be busy spending time with my husband and sons. The boys have brought their girlfriends home from college and we're working on a puzzle. We arent' providing alcohol or getting drunk.

I know several families who have left Pleasanton to try to raise kids in other communities. Every single one either returned or wished they could because other communites had lousy school systems and negative influences that were much worse for their kids.

We are not perfect, but the majority of us are working very hard to make this a great community for our youth. Some of you people are so judgemental and really are not accurate in all of your assumptions.

Posted by chris
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Nov 24, 2007 at 1:23 pm

To wealthy: you are right, there are alot of good people in this town wealthy or not...hard work and values pay off...I would like to add though, there are those too that do tend to look down on others, because of their status, or whatever...but that happens everywhere..but I agree with you that we are lucky to live in a small community, others are a lot worse off..we should quit bashing parents, the whole thing has turned around now to other issues, not the original one of the tragedy of Laurel's passing...thanks for the insight.

Posted by New Parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 6:58 pm

I don't know how this became a forum for Pleasanton parenting, we are new to Pleasanton and although it is a bit "quiet" for us, so far it's been pretty good. I have two sons in the school district and we have been very impressed by the dedication of the professionals who teach our kids, I would say it is the single best thing about living here.

This horrible tragedy has brought to light a problem that is not unique to Pleasanton. Unfortunatly the three young people involved, two arrested and one dead, were closley tied to the community, this has magnifed the incident as many people in town new both the driver and her victim. In Miami, where we recently moved from, these types of stories were so routine that we were numb to them. Here, since they hit so close to home, they become personel and can bring out both the best and worst in people.

To "resident"; like you we are new to Pleasanton. While I have met a few of the "obnoxious" people you write about, most folks we have met have been helpful and nice. There are deep roots here and it takes a while for folks to warm up. Coming from the South Florida Latino community, my sons feel a little "browner" than most kids, but they have made a big splash on the local soccer clubs!

To "Wealthy"; I think its nice you had a chance to tell everyone here how "rich you are", I'm sure it made you feel a lot better and that all of your friends are probably "wealthy" too, how nice for you, we are all so proud. Congratulations too on your great kids. I can appreciate the "sweat & tears" it took for you and your hubby to put yourselves through college and how great all the parents in Pleasanton are, while we have met many great folks in Pleasanton, we have met our share of snobs like you too. You probably wouldn't have much time for us, see, we live in one of those great houses in a great neighborhood too...but we made it by first washing those fancy cars of yours and mowing your lwans. Most here would like to see us move on, but we are going to stay a while and bring some much needed flavor and salsa to your boring town.

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 11:04 pm

:) Viva la differance!

Posted by Wake up, smell the cat food
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 24, 2007 at 11:24 pm

I'd like to be like everyone else and comment on this blog by saying that "my heart goes out to the families" and "my prayers are with you" but the fact is I can't. I can't because this so-called tragedy is completely irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. There are at least 6 billion people on this planet and way more serious problems arising (hrrmm, need I say global warming, or the ever-so-politically-correct "climate change?"), and I simply cannot feel any sorrow for the death of one 19-year old and the overall situation at hand.

Posted by "wealthy" pleasanton parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 24, 2007 at 11:35 pm

WOW.....the judgments and the stereotyping are even worse than I thought!!! New parent, bringing "salsa to this boring town", I do work for the school district, so thank you for your acknowlegment for my dedication. I truly am dedicated to all children. All of our children are precious gifts. The adults in this community need to work together, help one another, keep our kids safe, be positive role models, and help advise and give our kids direction with every opportunity that arises.

I live in a big house and have a nice car, so YOU may judge me to be one of those "snob parents of Pleasanton". My true wealth comes from the family and friends that I have. And by the way, my friends all fall within a wide range of the financial spectrum. Most do have a common goal with us however, and that is to raise healthy kids, with good values. We all are painfully aware of the rough world they face and that one bad choice could very well be their last.

You really should get over the stereotyping. I think the large majority of parents dedicated to this community have a common goal. WE ALL wish to prevent a tradegy like this from happening again.
WE ALL want our children to be safe, and happy, and successful.
WE ALL do whatever we can to keep our kids from drinking and driving and putting themselves in harms way. This tradegy is ALL parents worse nightmare.

And by the way, new parent, I don't feel sorry for you. Personally, I've done everything from waiting tables to cleaning houses to get where I am. Most of us have. You aren't special for having to work to get where you are.

Last, I think your also egocentric to think anyone else in your neighborhood cares about you living there. That is, unless your one of those parents providing booze and parties for under age kids in our "boring" town. That would be unacceptable to any of the parents of Pleasanton that I know.

Posted by somewhere here
a resident of Apperson Ridge
on Nov 25, 2007 at 12:33 pm

To last comment - Yes, I too have done everything I can to make ends meet and worked 2 jobs many, many times...Thank you for your comments about us all doing what WE ALL do to keep our children safe...Thought what happened to Laurel has changed these forums to looking at Laurel, you can't even know how I think this has opened so many eyes...bless you are in His loving arms now...

Posted by New Parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 25, 2007 at 6:24 pm

Hmm...I think I touched a nerve Ms. Wealthy, thats good, folks of color seem to do that around here. Again, I just find the demographics in Pleasanton very unique and yes, quite boring. Please, don't feel sorry for me, it is I who feel sorry for you. You seem a bit narrow minded and perhaps typical of the folks who have lived her for a couple of decades, guarding against our "bad influence" in the community. This is a great country, full of opportunites, you will never understand, that it is more difficult for someone of color either Latino or black to get were we are now. How could you? By the way, are there any African American's living here? What have you done with them. I have met a few of my brothers here but not very many.

I am sure you are comfortable with folks like me mowing your lawn or cleaing your house, but as an equal??? Yeah right. We have worked hard, have made a ton of money and the reason we are here is to make more and provide the best education we can for our kids. Again, I also stated that 90% of the people here have been great, it is the 10% like you that keep us laughing.

Posted by 40 year Pleasanton resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 25, 2007 at 8:17 pm

New Parent, Are you serious?

Posted by native californian
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Nov 25, 2007 at 11:55 pm

New parent, this blog is about a very sad loss in our community. We are hit very hard by this because we care, thus all of the comments on how to better deal with our kids in the future.

Basically it sounds like your here in the "boring" town of Pleasanton to TAKE what you CAN GET? A little inside scoop, our schools and town are great, in large part, for the amount of time volunteers of the community are willing to GIVE BACK.

Also, here in California, we are one of the most ethnically diverse states in the country. You can take that chip off of your shoulder now. Maybe you should start a different blog where you can address some of your issues. Seriously, you seem to come here with many, and you've also gotten way off topic.

Posted by Paula
a resident of Foothill High School
on Nov 26, 2007 at 5:18 am

Wake up and smell the cat food....your comments about this death being nothing in the "grand scheme of things" are hurtful and mean. Why did you even bother to contribute to this comment board that was directly related to the death of Laurel if it was so totally unimportant to you? The few minutes that you used to contribute your "profound" thoughts could have been spent much more productively; perhaps you should move to Berekley or some other more liberal minded community where Global causes are more importan than the death of someone's beloved child...shame on you!
Posted by Paula, a member of the Foothill High School community, 0 minutes ago

Posted by A Tired Parent
a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2007 at 11:05 am

I parented three children in a wealthy Pleasanton community. I, too, am tired of the way Pleasanton turns a blind eye to the problems of their youth - spouting test scores and college entrance statistics. If your child is on the right track, you don't see a lot of what goes on.....but if your child chooses a path different than you would like for him or her, there are many "adult-supervised" activities that they can attend and party right along with adults. Adults and parents who smoke daily, who give their children the master bedroom in the house (along with a refrigerator in that bedroom with vodka and orange juice inside) and have kids "hang out" in their home every single night of the week. Boy's town. It's a party every night in Pleasanton, and if your children hide that FACT from you, then maybe they are participating much more than you might be aware of.

Posted by Latina
a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2007 at 11:35 am

"NEW PARENT" Wow!!! Please do not throw your ethnicty into this. You being BROWN has nothing to do with how hard you work. My family works just as hard, and we too consider ourselves to be "wealthy" You choose to wash, "their cars" and mow" their lawns" How dare you degrate our culture because your bitter. I don't live in Pleasanton, so I would have to consider you the SNOB in the town, because of your poor attitude.

This is an extreamly tight knit community, and I know for a fact that these girls are loved and cared for, and that the people in this community work hard to keep up the image that it is portrayed to be.

Do not knock someone becuase they live a certain lifestyle. You shoudl try to bring some of that "Salsa" to a neighbors house and get to know them before you judge them.

Welcome to California, and the new neighborhood.

Posted by LATINA
a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2007 at 11:57 am

Oh and by the way, that image is one of being very close and caring. not snobish and hateful as you seem to think.

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 26, 2007 at 1:16 pm

Native California,

I wasn't going to go with this "off topic" discussion until I read what you wrote. How can you possibly compare Pleasanton to the rest of California?

California is very ethnically diverse.
Pleasanton is Wonder Bread White.

California is rated 49th in the nation in grades 1-12.
Pleasanton's school scores show much higher than that.

There are many other disparate comparisons we can discuss later.

The person who posted was referring to Pleasanton, not the state. I'm really surprised you responded the way you did. We're white. We almost chose not to move to P-town because it was too white and I'd prefer to raise my kids in a more 'normal' representative environment. We chose this town, nonetheless, for other wonderful reasons and have loved living here.

Recommending another blog was the only good comment offered. It clearly is a topic that some feel passionate about.

Posted by native californian
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Nov 26, 2007 at 5:04 pm

Mac, again off topic, the 2005 ACS consensus puts california at 60.9 percent white and pleasanton at 71.7. Get out and experience your community. We are pretty rich culturaly speaking.

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 27, 2007 at 1:06 pm

(comment removed by PW staff)

Posted by amber
a resident of Danbury Park
on Nov 27, 2007 at 1:40 pm

(comment removed by PW staff)

Posted by TORTILLA
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 27, 2007 at 1:44 pm

(comment removed by PW staff)

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 27, 2007 at 2:01 pm

The way I understand it is that some people are genitically predisposed to becoming alcoholic. They inherit the ability to become drunks. It's a predictive course, the more you drink, the worse it gets. I've heard that bedroom communities like Pleasanton are full of drunks and addicts; secret sippers/seniors, folks self-medicating to smother their feelings and of course, the youth with tons of problems they can't shake. The good news about drinking in excess is that alcohol doesn't discriminate. It is willing to destroy all colors, sizes and shapes of people.

My advice is that Pleasantonians do something about all the drunks in your town. It's bad for you and we all have to suffer because of your selfish addictions. As an immigrant, I expect better from my American neighbors. You keep violating our laws and there will be consequences.

Posted by chris
a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Nov 27, 2007 at 2:57 pm

To Cholo: Obviously, you have nothing positive to say and alcoholism is everywhere my poor confused soul...Look in your own backyard and clean your own house before you clean everyone else's....Your obvious resentments and jelousies need to be dealt with.....tsk tsk my dear!

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 27, 2007 at 3:04 pm


I've always enjoyed your posts and have agreed with most of them...until now. gave me the best grin today. OUR community? Like Livermore is any different? Give me a break. It's happening in all the affluent 'bedroom' communities and even those lacking in affluence. It is pretty much everywhere. We just happen to be highly involved in this open public discussion about the problems. My son lives in Livermore and so do many friends. Dont' fool yourself into believing you can point that silly finger of yours! :) It's near you, too, my dear! ;

(Don't even get us started about you immigrants worrying about our laws...)

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 27, 2007 at 3:06 pm

I just wonder what the makeup of the Livermore gangs might be? Hmmm...tough one, I know...but...

Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Nov 27, 2007 at 3:15 pm

Anyone notice Pleasanton's Aug-Oct Community of Character trait when this accident occurred?

August - October

* Doing what I am supposed to do
* Always doing my best
* Being accountable for my choices

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 27, 2007 at 3:25 pm

Hi Stacey, Cholo here! Drunk & addicts don't follow the rules! they say, mi casa su casa! Your community is my community, after all, we are all Americans my petites!

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 27, 2007 at 5:00 pm

Hey Chis...immigrants never had it so good. I love living here; learned to speak English and never looked back. Political refugees from Latin America disappear all the time. If my family had stayed, we would have joined the disappeared.

Alcohol & drug abuse is pervasive in the US. You brought you addictions upon yourselves. Like the first lady said, just say STOP!
As immigrants, my family never broke American laws. So why are you Americans doing it and blaming us?

This thread is supposed to be about what happened to the young woman.
That is tragic. It is too depressing to think about. I don't understand who broke what law? I don't know the details of the case or I would come up with some kind of judgement, which is something I enjoy doing. That's why we had to flee to the US, because the fascists thought that we would disappear without a trace. NOT!

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 27, 2007 at 5:04 pm

Correction: the fascist government had targeted us for our activities with a local newspaper that was anti-government. We split like FAST!
We just walked across the border and made ourselves at home. We didn't drink and drug because the first lady said not to. We obeyed her advice and we all successful and we are all alive and enjoying this country.

Posted by mom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 27, 2007 at 11:46 pm

Cholo, don't EVEN get me started on immigrants "Not Breaking the Law". An illegal immigrant caused high speed and nearly fatal accident with my child 4 months ago.

Needless to say, the immigrant had no insurence, no drivers liscence, and is not being held accountable AT ALL. I have a child who is seriously injured, possibly for life, a totalled vehicle, and mounting medical bills.

I am very angry that Americans are held accountalbe to the law, but this immigrant is not!!! The prosecuter's office won't go after the "responsible party because they will just likely up and move". My kid would never, ever, get away with that.

Posted by laura
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Nov 28, 2007 at 10:19 am

Rest in Peace Laurel, you are in His loving arms....God watch over Katy and show her your amazing Grace.....

a resident of another community
on Nov 28, 2007 at 12:02 pm


Posted by it's about time
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 28, 2007 at 5:44 pm

AMEN! very well said.

Posted by mac
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 28, 2007 at 6:59 pm

Mom, from another neighborhood,

My heart aches for you and what you've gone through. My dear friend was in a similar situation. She will remain changed for life due to a similar accident and the police merely told the car full of illegals to drive off, that they'd never be able to know their real names and that it was not worth holding them for anything.

She remains in recovery (6 years later) and still full of anger that her own country allows that immigrant gets off scott free.

Posted by LATINA
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2007 at 10:44 am


This forum is not about the latin community, this is about Laurel and Katie.

I myself am Mexican and Spanish, and I don't want to read about how your so pure of all evil.

If you don't like the way the US is then leave. My family works hard and has fought in all the major wars since this country was developed. That is how long we have been around.

Anyways. Laurel and Katie, one who's suffering has ended and the other's has just begun. I feel sorry for both.

Laurel your loved and missed by so many.

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 29, 2007 at 12:49 pm

This blog is not about how long your familia has been hanging around the fort or your questionable ethnicity. No my dear, it's about how you fly around trying to get attention for yourself and squeezing in a few selfish thoughts about how you feel sorry for them. Sheeeeeeesh...go find you little moist rock and hide!

There are so many drunks in Pleasanton I can't even count that high. I don't think that this would have ever happened if responsible parents had been around helping their daughters understand the dangers of drunk driving. Too many parents allow their children to get drunk or high and try to pass it off as experimentation.

Don't come crying to me if you're a drunk or an addict, when you break the law, there are consequences.

Posted by Chris
a resident of Castlewood
on Nov 29, 2007 at 12:56 pm

Cholo...Obviously you are uneducated, stupid and biased....take a look in your backyard...Livermore is a cesspool of losers like yourself....have you thought about going back to school to learn to speak and might want to think about that one obviously have nothing to do but sit around a post because you are probably on welfare, sucking from the state eating too many twinkies!!!!

Posted by LATINA
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2007 at 1:37 pm


I am apart of this family for reasons that are non of your concern. We lost her because of a senseless accident. No I am not an addict of any sort, neither is anyone in this family. I have to agree with Chris 100%

You don't know that families, or the situations, SO HOW DARE YOU SPEAK ON SOMETHING YOU HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE ON. Laurel was an only child, she made a horrible decision. This does not mean that the parents failed. She was 19. You can't hold your child's hand forever. You give them the tools to become a person of their own and PRAY TO GOD that they make the right decisions.

Its kind of funny, because I can pretty much say that the only reason why your being rude and getting brave is because no sees your face, and no one ever will. Your probably a good person, and feel bad, but really, all your talking about is being an addict and how Pleasanton is to blame.

Have some kind of compassion for a mother that lost her only child. Have some compassion for a child that had no family to tell her she could have received help.

This is not about a city ands its crutches, its about two families that have forever been changed, and will never be the same because of bad decisions mad.

I hope you have kids, and I hope that your parenting skills are tested. Because you obviously have no idea what your talking about.

Posted by question
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2007 at 2:06 pm

does anyone know when Paul Stonebarger's, the man who bought these girls the alcohol and dropped them off at their car drunk, court date is?

Posted by LATINA
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2007 at 2:18 pm

At this point I think that he is jsut in Santa Rita awaiting a court date. I think because of the connection that he has with Katie's case they have to wait to receive all eveidence before they are able to give him a sentence of any sort.

The Pleasanton Weekly is pretty good about updating though.

Posted by question
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2007 at 3:34 pm

He's not in Santa Rita, he bailed out the same day or the day after he was arrested. He got to spend Thanksgiving with his family. I know that they are not going to sentence him yet but he should have a court date to enter a plea. He was arrested already so they already have enough evidence against him to charge him.

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 29, 2007 at 4:01 pm

Native Americans say that if you're Mexican, then you are INDIAN. Too ashamed to claim that part of your identity Latina? Understandable.

Millions of parents have lost their children in accidents and they don't hang out on blogs telling everybody over and over and over. Give it a rest Chris. Nothing that can do or say is going to make it easier for anybody....right? So butt out, there is nothing you can do or say to change what happened. Drunks harm themselves all the time.

How come a person who gives a gal booze over the age of 18 is being held for anything, she made an adult decision and it cost her big time! They chose to drink and the rest is history. I am happy that the drunks didn't kill other innocent drivers. They could have caused a pileup and killed dozens of innocent drivers. I don't care that one more drunk is dead. As long as she took no innocent citizens with her.

They could have at least served their country in Iraq and died honorably. But drunk and risking the lives of innocent other, no mercy here.

Posted by LATINA
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2007 at 4:37 pm


AGAIN, YOU SPEAK OF WHAT YOU DO NOT KNOW!! And again I say, I hope you have children, and your parenting skills are tested. You are truly ignorant, hateful, and I see with your ethnicity comment, RACIST as well.

If you knew what you were ranting about, which you cleary do not, you would know that Laurel was not driving, and you wuold know the history of the driver,and the history of Laurel.

But its because of your blissful ignorance, that I am not offended by what comes out of your words.

And not that this has anything to do with anything, but I am Arabian, and Native American Indian. Proud of it all. I used the word Latina to hopefully relate to you in some way as you seem to be using CHOLO as claiming your roots. Its sad though, because your doing it a huge injustice by talking the way you are.



Try to make some type of sense with your meaningless babble.

The only true offense that I feel is your ignorance.

But speaking intelligently to someone like you goes no where. Your not the only one in this world that is angry about drunk drivers and addicts, so stop acting like it.

We need support at this time, not HATE!!

If you have no positive comments other then Laurel desrves to die and Katie deserves whatever she gets, to leave on this forum. Then just stop where your at.

Posted by a tired parent
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Nov 29, 2007 at 4:57 pm

Mac, I have read your blogs over the past few weeks, and I must say,, do you have a life? If not, you need to get one. Your ranting serves no purpose, you seem to have a lot of anger and hostility, maybe you should address that. Forgiveness is close to Godliness, don't think that is in your nature. You only seem to find fault in everything around you. I have lived in Pleasanton for 19 years, Ihave raised my children here, they have gone to school here and graduated and have attended great colleges. They thought Pleasanton was boring and I worried every time they l eft the house, I still do when they are home. But kids make stupid choices with out thinking and Katie and Laurel, both were making those choices. No one held them down and poured the alcohol down their throat. They certainly weren't doing it in a 2007 Mercedes or Range Rover. They were both at fault, they both made bad choices that day and they suffered terrible consequences because of it. And we here have to live with it. Let Laurel rest in peace and let Katie deal with what she has to deal with for the rest of her life. She made a bad choice, it could have easily been the reverse, if it had been Laurels' car it could have been Katie that died.. Stop assuming you are so much better than anyone else and get a life.!

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 29, 2007 at 7:29 pm

Are you ready for you closeup pretend Latina? Don't you just take the cake?

This hummy tune reminds me of you: coo-coo bird sits on the ole gum tree...tee hee hee, tee hee hee...

Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Nov 29, 2007 at 9:20 pm


That'd be "Kookaburra sits on the old gum tree". Famous little Australian tune...

Posted by question
a resident of another community
on Nov 30, 2007 at 8:57 am

CHOLO - you are very harsh and hateful with your words. You, your family or your close friends must never have done anything wrong ever! Nobody that is close to you ever made a bad decision, or have they and they just were lucky that nothing happened.

The MAN who provided them the alcohol is in trouble because it is AGAINST THE LAW for someone over the age of 21 to provide alcohol to anyone under the age of 21. Do you not know the law or are you really as ignorant as you sound.

Both girls also made horrible decisions that morning and nobody is saying that he poured the alcohol down their throat but he did something ILLEGAL and should pay the consequences for his actions as both girls have done and are continuing to do.

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 30, 2007 at 10:30 am

MADD/Mothers Against Drunk Driving: Please consider speaking with MADD. They are not in denial about the consequences of drunk driving. Drunk driving is dangerous and it's a leading cause of death. Thousands and thousands of Americans have lost their lives because of drunk drivers.

If you continue to pretend that that is not the primary issue, then others will think that it's OK to make a bad decision and hop into cars and drive off drunk.

During this holiday season, there will be lots of free alcohol available. Keep it simple, don't drink and drive!

If pretend Latina and question need a few safety tips, just ask and I'll do my best to steer you in the right direction.

As for my family, we love living in the US and it's the best country in the whole ifs ands or buts!

We all speak English and we do whatever we can to make the US a better country for everybody. HOORAY for the ole RED WHITE & BLUE! We are committed to never drink 'n drive.

Posted by Enough
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 30, 2007 at 11:06 am

Cholo, as a resident of Livermore, I am begging you to either stop posting your ignorant self righteous rants, or claim to live in a different town. I'm embarrassed to associate myself with you as a Livermore resident. I feel bad for all of the intelligent Latin Americans on this board as well, because I'm sure they cringe every time they see you've posted.

My heart goes out to the Williams family. I can't imagine your loss. You're in my prayers.

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 30, 2007 at 11:29 am

It's best to speak only for yourself Enough.

Google: MADD,It's highly educational.

Don't hold your breath Enough. Many Americans are not born in the US and some of us were forced to flee dictatorships. That's why we value free speech. Also, I don't appreciate beggars so get a job, pay your taxes and don't violate our laws. Got it?

If you need a few tips on how to manage stress, let me know I'll do my best to help you out.

I guess it's not in me to feel sorry for drunk drivers. It takes what it takes to educate the public. Tip: If you gotta drink, find a sober person to drive you home!

Read the MADD web page, it will help you understand why drunk drivers are BAD NEWS.

Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Nov 30, 2007 at 1:18 pm

Dear Enough: "Latin Americans" can speak for themselves." This nothing new. You need not feel bad or cringe for the Latinos on this board.
Like I said, I don't appreciate beggars so get a job and keep your nose clean.

Posted by Chris
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Dec 1, 2007 at 6:59 am

God bless you Laurel, you are in his Loving Arms now...away from the harms of this are up there on our side girl....Lord guide Katy and show her your path...Amen.

Posted by Jeb Bing
editor of the Pleasanton Weekly
on Dec 1, 2007 at 9:42 am

Jeb Bing is a registered user.

This topic has run its course. Thanks for posting. Jeb Bing

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