Haze for him
show due to debut soon.
From staff reports. Press-Telegram
|Aspiring disc jockey David
Valdez is a 21-year-old entrepreneur.
He has already logged a year- and-a-half of air time in Albuquerque, N.M., and is trying to bolster his resume while looking for a radio job in the competitive Los Angeles market ... in the Wayne and Garth field ... Or the Keenen Ivory Wayans field ... or the Howard Stern field depending on how you look at it.
So goes his soon-to-be-aired cable-access television show, "Hollywood Haze," which recently taped its first episode. "I wanted to pitch it to a different crowd, the crowd that wanted to party every week," Valdez said. "The underground crowd."
|TO GET ON THE SHOW
An audition (of sorts) for "Hollywood Haze" can be had by attending Club Jump on Friday. If you shun the Hollywood scene and prefer Just to dance, well, that's OK, too. You can get the location of the all-ages party by calling (310) 923-JUMP.
If you can't wait till Fri- day, you can leave a message at that number describing your talent, along with your name and where you can be reached.
But first the concept had to be pitched to the Downey Continental Cablevision people, who gave the Downey resident the go- ahead to tape his self-described half-hour mix of television's "In Living Color" and radio's "The Howard Stern Show."
|So you have Fly Girl-like
dancers (Vanessa Alcaret, Jessica Mageno and Laura Reyna)
and Sternlike obnoxious skits (courtesy of Valdez and
co-writer Oscar Macias, a senior at Nor- walk High
School). Valdez's brother, Steve, stays behind the camera
to direct him hosting the "Haze."
The talent comes from another of Valdez's ventures, Club Jump, a weekly teen dance party he promotes that moves from venue to venue for the sum- mer. Valdez and his crew scan the crowd, home in on talented toe-tappers and teens teeming with talent and offer them "stardom." Today Downey, tomorrow the world.
The next installment of "Hollywood Haze" is already planned, but Valdez said he is looking for' still more aspiring Rosie Perezes and Homie the Clowns. Episodes of the series are as yet unscheduled, but will begin airing next month on Continental Cablevision's Channel 51.
tries to save Downey club plan
Staff writer, Press-Telegram, October 7, 1992
zoning spoil promoter's party?
|DOWNEY Teen-agers just
"wanna have fun," their parents just want them
to do it safely, and David Valdez just wants to earn a
Valdez, who promotes teen dances, says all of the above are possible if he can get his hands on Skate-O-Rama.
"It's the only place in all of Downey and the surrounding area that can hold the capacity I need," Valdez said.
The former disc jockey said he has his eye on the aging, 20,000-square-foot roller rink because it's the perfect place for his roving teen club, Club Jump.
Valdez said his club, which is open only to 13- to 20-year-olds, offers all the entertainment benefits of the teen party scene music, fog machines and dance contests in an atmosphere free of drugs and alcohol.
What stands between Valdez and opening night? City Hall's blessing some- thing, it seems, the city just isn't going to give.
"It's a simple zoning issue," said City Planner Ron Yoshiki.
Tonight at 7:30, Valdez will appear before the Planning Commission to appeal the city's finding that the roller rink at 12'310 S. Woodruff Ave. isn't zoned for a dance club. The city cannot issue the permits that Valdez needs to operate the club at that location, Yoshiki said.
|The block is zoned for
manufacturing and industrial uses, which include the
roll- er rink but don't allow for a club, the city
Skate-0-Rama's owner, Hans Oertel, said he would consider renting the space to Valdez if the teen club organizer gets the proper permits. Whatever happens, skating will continue as long as he owns it,, said Oertel, who has been trying to sell the rink.
"Skating has the first priority," he said.
The city's position leaves Valdez three options: asking the City Council to amend the zoning codes; looking for another site in a commercial zone; or fighting City Hall. At this point, Valdez would rather fight than switch.
"What's the difference between skating and dancing? When you really think about it, dancing is really the same thing except you don't have skates on your feet," he said.
Yoshiki cited insufficient parking as a secondary problem. To remedy this, Valdez has sought to use a neighboring lot at Columbus High School.
|The school district has
agreed to make the lot available, said Downey schools
Superintendent Ed Sussman. School Board President Mary
Tesoriero said The district is willing to work with
Valdez because he's attempting to offer youth a safe
"There's a great need for kids to have something to do in this town. There really isn't much," she said.
Local students believe the market Is there. Warren High School Students Estimate that half of the school's 2,400 students Have gone to at least one "rave," an underground, all-night party. Valdez Is trying to recreate a rave atmosphere at his club in Downey.
Many teens go to raves every weekend, said 18-year-old senior Joleen Leonard, who has been to several such parties. "It's cool. It's a different mix of people not segregated in groups," she said.
|Teens say they travel to
South Central Los Angeles, Hollywood and Los Angeles for
the parties, "We go just to get away, dance and get
out on our own," said Robert Oganesian, a 14-
Party locations are usually a secret, and people have to drive around searching for word-of- mouth clues to find them.
Valdez, who lives in Downey, has been operating Club Jump since June. The weekly teen dance club moves from one venue to another and has been held at restaurant banquet rooms in Bellflower, Norwalk, Paramount and Santa Fe Springs.
Attendance at Club Jump dances averages 300 to 400 teens, said Valdez, who charges $10 per person.
A permanent location would cut costs and also would boost the club's legitimacy in parents' eyes, Valdez said. Skate-O-Rama is ideal because the rink holds up to 650 people and is located in a safe area, he said.
board OKs plan for teen club
Luis Monteagudo Jr.
Staff writer, Press-Telegram, October 22, 1992
must file permit to use roller rink
|DOWNEY A plan to start
a teen dance club at a roller-skating- rink in the city
cleared a key hurdle Wednesday, but it also kicked up a
The Downey Planning Com- mission agreed that the dance club can go into a light-manufacturing zone. But the approval is not final.
The commission also said applicant David Valdez has to file a conditional-use permit to put the club in the Skate-0- Rama rink at 12320 Woodruff Ave., next to Columbus High School.
Valdez said after the meeting that he will file an application for the permit and return to the Planning Commission for final Approval, bringing with him 500 teen-agers who support the club.
|"There is a need for a
place to go." he said.
Valdez, 22, proposed his idea to the city and the Downey Unified School District last month. The former disc jockey has promoted teen parties and has said he wants to establish a permanent club. called Club Jump, at the 20,000-square-foot roller- skating rink.
Valdez said his club would give 13- to 20-year-olds from Downey and nearby areas a place to hang out.
The atmosphere. replete with music and fog machines, would try to recreate the popular teen rave parties that are held in warehouses. But there would be no alcohol or drugs.
Despite Valdez's assurances, four residents complained to the planning commission Wednesday.
|Terry Patterson, owner of a
construction equipment-rental company near the club, said
the area already has problems from nearby Frisco's, a
He said youths get drunk and litter the streets with beer bottles. Yolanda Henley submitted a petition signed by 40 South Downey residents who said they opposed the club.
Henley said people were worried about loud noise, graffiti and excess traffic. She also said the idea of mixing 13- and 20-year- olds is inappropriate.
Valdez said his club would attract a clientele that "wants to have fun."
Downey does not have a club for teen-agers, and if his club is not allowed, he added, youths will continue going to parties in Los Angeles, where the potential for them to get into trouble is higher.
Fame May Have Landed Suspect in Court
Cable TV host and his Father are charged with trying to arrange slaying of girl
who accused him of rape. Young man's lawyer says he is the victim.
By Emily Adams
Special to The Times, December 10, 1993
|On the small screen of cable
access television, Tito David Valdez Jr. was a rising
star. He was recognized on the Eastside nightclub circuit
as host of a local Teen-age party and music show. He
seemed To be on his way up.
But behind the party guy image, Valdez was in trouble. Charged with the rape of a 13-year-old girl who applied for a job with his cable show, he faced a trial Monday that could have derailed his dreams. And now, Valdez, 23, and his father are in jail, accused of trying to hire a hit man to silence the girl.
According to prosecutors, the younger Valdez offered an undercover Downey police officer $250 to shoot the girl in the head and make it look like a carjacking. His father, Tito David Valdez, 56, bought a gun for the officer to use, police said. But Valdez's attorney said no rape took place, nor was there any murder solicitation. Instead, the 'very recognition that Valdez sought may have been his downfall, his attorney says.
"This is a clean-cut kid. A tremendous talent," attorney Alfredo M. Amecuza said. "Somehow, the Downey Police Department is very interested in this case because he is so visible." Certainly, the younger Valdez courted media attention, For months, he sent tapes of his nearly year-old cable access show, "Hollywood Haze," to newspapers and television stations. That generated a trickle of publicity but nothing like the coverage he received this week as he appeared beside his father in matching blue, jail-issued jumpsuits in Downey Municipal Court.
After pleading not guilty to conspiracy and murder solicitation charges earlier in the week, the Valdezes on Thursday requested bail which had been denied them since their Dec. 2 arrest.
|Both father and son offered
to place themselves under house arrest in their Downey
home. But Municipal Judge John David Lord rejected their
proposal, noting that the alleged murder plot was hatched
in their house, and denied bail for the younger Valdez.
His father was granted $1 million bail, but will remain
in jail because he is unable to raise the money, said his
attorney, Richard R. Leonard.
If convicted, the men face sentences of 25 years to life in prison.
According to police, the younger Valdez's downfall began in April after he advertised for office help on his cable show. A 13-year-old girl answered the ad, telling Valdez she was 16. She told police that Valdez picked her up, brought her home, and, while his father and brother watched television down- stairs, raped her in his room, Detective Stephen Garza said.
Amezcua offers a different scenario, one in which the TV host became a victim of his own limited celebrity.
"We are dealing with a very impressionable young lady, one who was mesmerized by David and his TV show," Amezcua said. "She thought that by seeing and being seen with David she could be part of this culture his show portrayed."
Amezcua denied that any sex took place, and said the girl was just seeking attention from the cable access host, and later from authorities.
Rape charges were filed, but Valdez remained free on $25,000 bail. While awaiting his December trial, Valdez landed a job as host of a weekly radio show and continued to produce his cable program a freewheeling mixture of music videos and interviews with partying teen-agers and rap musicians. Most footage focused on teen-age girls dancing at underground parties and nightclubs.
|As the rape trial approached
Amezcua said, a death threat note was left on the
windshield of Valdez's convertible.
Police say they never heard about any death threats against Valdez, and contend that his real problem was his making,
In the last six weeks, they said Valdez had begun complaining in nightclubs about the pending rape case against him. One of the people he confided in was an FBI informant, who reported to authorities that Valdez wanted the girl scared. About two weeks ago, the informant said Valdez had changed his mind: Now he wanted the girl killed. FBI agents contacted Downey police, who set up a sting, Garza said.
On Dec. 2, an undercover officer met with Valdez and his father at their house and agreed to kill the girl for $250. Police said the older Valdez, a Rockwell mechanic for 33 years, was sent out to buy a gun." - He walked down the block, bought a .38-caliber handgun for $200 and gave it to the purported hit man, Garza said. The gun was purchased, Amezcua said, but only for the son's protection.
Valdez was arrested as he drove from his house with the undercover officer to show him where the girl lived, Garza said. His father' was arrested that night.
Although the younger Valdez is still scheduled to face his rape trial Monday, prosecutors and defense attorneys said the trial may be delayed. Both men are scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing in the conspiracy case Dec. 20.
Sr., Jr. trial Nov. 28
Staff writer, Press-Telegram
son charged with conspiracy to kill
|NORWALK A former
Downey cable-TV host and his father are set to go to
trial Nov. 28 on charges of conspiring to kill a teen-age
Norwalk Superior Court Judge Dewey L. Falcone set the date Monday after denying two motions made by Tito David Valdez Jr. that would have delayed the trial
It's been nearly a year since Valdez Jr. and his father, Tito David Valdez Sr., were arrested on suspicion of hiring a hit man to kill a 13-year-old girl who had accused the younger Valdez of raping her. Since then, the 23-year-old Valdez has been convicted of raping the girl at his parent's home after he had interviewed her for a job. He is serving a 14-year prison term and has appealed the conviction. Valdez hosted a youth-oriented local cable-TV dance show, "Hollywood Haze," and had planned to open an under-21 dance club in Downey.
The trial has been put off to allow defense attorneys to work in other trials and to consider the competency of Valdez Sr. to stand trial.
On Monday, Falcone rejected Valdez Jr.'s request for a new attorney, saying it wasn't timely. Then, the younger Valdez asked to act as his own attorney.
|Falcone found Valdez Jr.
competent to represent himself, but balked at the three
months Valdez Jr. said he needed to prepare for the case.
"The court finds it would unjusttifiably delay trial and severely interfere with justice," Falcone said.
Karen Filipi, an attorney with the lead firm in O.J. Simpson's murder defense, will remain as Valdez Jr.'s attorney.
Meanwhile, Tito David Valdez Sr., 57, has visibly deteriorated in the year he has been in jail awaiting trial. He has not been able to post bail, set at $500,000. Valdez Jr., dressed in an orange jail uniform, rolled his hospital- gown-clad father into the court- room in a wheelchair. The older Valdez has lost more than 70 pounds, grown a gray beard and much of his previously dark hair has turned white or fallen out. He feebly waved to his wife and youngest son who were in the public seating area.
His attorney Richard Leonard, said he has been continuously treated in the jail ward at County- USC Medical Center for the last several months.
If convicted, the two men face terms of 25 years to life on the conspiracy charge and nine years on the solicitation charge.