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California

Beach fort erected by ‘Bay Boys’ surfer gang will be demolished, Palos Verdes Estates officials say

The illegal shelter at Lunada Bay will be demolished

An illegal stone-and-wood shelter built by a group of territorial surfers at Lunada Bay on the Palos Verdes Peninsula is set to be demolished soon.

The Palos Verdes Estates Planning Commission on Tuesday night approved a permit to raze the structure used by the notorious Bay Boys, a self-appointed gang of enforcers who people from outside the upscale community have, for decades, accused of using violence and intimidation to keep them away from the famous surf spot.

For the record:
8:30 AM, Sep. 21, 2016 An earlier version of this article referred to the “Bay Boys” as the “Bad Boys” in the headline.

The commission approved the motion unanimously and without comment. No one from the public spoke on the matter. 

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In July, after initially seeking delays, the City Council unanimously approved a plan to dismantle the shelter despite strong opposition by residents of the relatively isolated enclave, who urged  their elected officials not to honor a request by the California Coastal Commission to remove the shelter or take harassment charges seriously.

Witnesses and pending lawsuits accuse the Bay Boys of congregating at the 30-year-old structure and bombarding outsiders with dirt clods, slashing their tires and assaulting them in the water. The attacks, witnesses said, were sometimes coordinated with small radios and group text messages.

Police reports over the years also show that the shelter, which was constructed without permits near the water’s edge at Rocky Point, has repeatedly been the scene of drug and alcohol use. 

The so-called “fort” was built at Rocky Point on the northwestern part of Lunada Bay. It consists of cemented stone retaining walls and a cemented patio with a stone table, fire pit, a stone bench and a wooden canopy. An adjacent seating area contains a wooden bench covered by a wood-frame with palm fronds. 

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The permit will allow a contractor to take jackhammers to the shelter and cart away the pieces. City officials estimate the job will cost about $50,000.

During the investigation of the Bay Boys’ shelter, the city found smaller rock structures at Resort Point on the bay’s south side and the Via Bandini storm water outfall in the middle of the bay’s crescent-shaped beach..

Planning officials say the removal of the fort and two other illegal structures will return the Lunada Bay shoreline to its natural condition.

dan.weikel@latimes.com

Twitter: @ladeadline16

dan.weikel@latimes.com

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