DEPUTIES SHOOT 13-YEAR-OLD
Calif. sheriff's deputies shoot, kill 13-year-old
SANTA ROSA, Calif. (AP) — Police in California say a 13-year-old boy who was killed by sheriff's deputies raised a pellet gun that looked like a high-powered rifle before sheriff's deputies opened fire.
Santa Rosa police said Wednesday that the deputies were on patrol Tuesday when they spotted the boy with the gun and repeatedly asked him to lower it. Instead, he raised it in their direction.
After shooting the teen, the Sonoma County deputies found that the gun was a replica that looked similar to a real AK-47 assault rifle.
The boy, Andy Lopez, is described as a popular eighth-grade student who played trumpet in his school band.
Some residents of Santa Rosa, about 50 miles northwest of San Francisco, wonder whether the deputies acted appropriately when they decided to fire on such a young person.
Sheriff Steve Freitas said in a statement that the shooting was a "tragedy."
SCHOOL GUN ACCIDENT
Calif. elementary student fires police gun, 3 hurt
CHINO, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say a child pulled the trigger on a police assault rifle at a Southern California elementary school, firing a bullet and creating shrapnel that injured three kids.
Chino police spokeswoman Tamrin Olden says the AR-15 was on a rack attached to a motorcycle on display during a drug prevention assembly Wednesday at Newman Elementary School.
Olden says a child managed to fire the rifle. The bullet hit a protective metal plate and shattered, making metal debris that apparently hit the children and left them with minor injuries.
Fire officials say two students were treated at hospitals and one was treated at school for cuts and scrapes.
Olden says all rifles have now been removed from department motorcycles and the incident is under investigation.
SF transit workers get raise, higher benefit costs
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Bay Area Rapid Transit officials have stopped a practice of making employees responsible for their own safety after two BART workers were killed Saturday in an accident at the Walnut Creek station.
BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost confirmed Wednesday evening that BART is suspending the practice, called simple approval, in what she called an abundance of caution until federal investigators are able to complete their inquiry into the accident.
The Contra Costa Times reported that suspension of the practice was announced in an interoffice memo Sunday.
Under BART's rules, when workers received simple approval to go onto the tracks, they were responsible for their own safety. One worker was to be designated a lookout and to warn the other of an oncoming train.
Track workers are required to obtain work orders, which she said provided more protections and usually required trains to be rerouted.
BART TRAIN FIRE
Fire forces evacuation of BART train at Orinda
(Information in the following story is from: KTVU-TV.)
ORINDA, Calif. (AP) — A fire erupted under a commuter train in the East Bay during the evening commute, sending smoke throughout a Bay Area Rapid Transit station and forcing train passengers to evacuate.
No one was injured, and train traffic was continuing through the Orinda station.
KTVU reports that the fire began about 6 p.m. Commuters driving by the station soon began posting pictures of the fire online.
BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost said in a tweet Wednesday evening that technicians were on the scene working to determine the cause.
STRANGLED OVER CELLPHONE
Man says he strangled neighbor over cellphone
(Information in the following story is from: The Tribune, http://www.sanluisobispo.com)
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (AP) — A California man who strangled his neighbor last fall said the woman had refused to return his cellphone.
The San Luis Obispo Tribune says Edmund Nungaray also apologized for the killing on Wednesday as he was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison.
Crowley pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in June for killing 46-year-old Deirdre Crowley.
At his sentencing, the 61-year-old Nungaray said he was in frail health from a heart condition when he loaned the cellphone to his neighbor. Nungaray said he became anxious when she didn't return it because he was afraid he might need it to call for help in a medical emergency.
Prosecutors say he strangled her during an argument.
MILITARY ADMINISTRATOR ARREST
Ex-military school head denies student sex abuse
(Information in the following story is from: U-T San Diego, http://www.utsandiego.com)
VISTA, Calif. (AP) — A former top administrator at California's lone military boarding school has pleaded not guilty to sexually abusing students.
U-T San Diego says Jeffrey Barton, former head of schools at the Army and Navy Academy in Carlsbad, entered the plea in a Vista courtroom Wednesday to two counts of sodomy by force and 14 counts of oral copulation by force.
The judge also lowered Barton's bail from $6 million to $3 million.
Juvenile hall guard suspected of sex with boy
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say a 30-year-old female correctional officer has been arrested on suspicion of having sex with a boy being held in a San Bernardino County juvenile hall.
San Bernardino police Lt. Paul Williams says Latavia Clarice Davis of Menifee was arrested when she arrived to work at the juvenile hall Wednesday morning.
Jail records show she was booked for investigation of forcible sexual penetration and is being held in county jail on $1 million bail.
Williams tells the Riverside Press-Enterprise that Davis was reported by the boy and the two had apparently developed a personal relationship.
Authorities have not released the boy's age, and his name is being withheld because he is a minor.
Dawdling robber nabbed easily at San Diego bank
SAN DIEGO (AP) — You never count your money when you're sitting at the table. Or when you're sitting at the scene of a bank robbery, apparently.
The FBI says a 60-year-old man sat down in the lobby of a Chase bank branch he'd just robbed and looked through the bag of money he had just taken from a teller.
That gave a security guard time to walk outside and summon a police officer, who promptly and peacefully arrested the robber as he walked out.
An FBI statement says the suspect is Kevin Blair Grattan of San Diego.
The statement says he had demanded money from a teller, who filled a grocery bag he gave her.
Grattan is expected to make his first court appearance Thursday. It's not clear whether he's hired an attorney.
HOSPITAL COMPUTERS STOLEN
Arrest made for theft of laptops with patient info
ALHAMBRA, Calif. (AP) — Police have arrested a homeless man they believe stole two laptop computers from a Southern California hospital chain that contained personal information on more than 700,000 patients.
City News Service says 36-year-old Christopher Lee Brown, also known as Allen Marcous, was arrested Wednesday in a homeless camp near a freeway in Alhambra. He remains jailed on $20,000 bail.
The laptops were taken on Oct. 12 from a sixth-floor office in Alhambra. Officials say the computers contained Social Security numbers, health insurance information and other data on patients who were treated at six AHMC Healthcare hospitals.
Police used surveillance video to help identify a suspect. The computers remain missing.
Hospital officials say the computers were password-protected and there's no evidence the information was accessed.
LA council moves to ban spiked elephant poker
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles City Council has voted to begin the process of banning bullhooks — the spike-tipped pokers used to train and control elephants.
The council on Wednesday unanimously asked the city attorney's office to prepare an ordinance outlawing the use of bullhooks, pitchforks, baseball bats and other prods.
The law would take effect in three years and make LA the largest city in the U.S. to ban the goads.
Critics say bullhooks are inhumane.
The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus says the decision wasn't supported by any evidence of local elephant abuse and won't affect the animals' welfare — but it might mean the end of elephants at the circus in LA.
STELLER SEA LIONS
NOAA takes Steller sea lions off threatened list
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A federal agency is taking the eastern population of Steller sea lion off the threatened species list.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration spokeswoman Julie Speegle says the eastern population has met recovery criteria the agency set out in 2008.
In 1979, the agency estimated there were about 18,000 sea lions in the eastern population, which stretches from Alaska's Panhandle to California's Channel Islands. That number rose to more than 70,000 by 2010, the most recent year a count was available.
The western population of Steller sea lions, stretching from Cape Suckling, Alaska, west to Russian waters, remains listed as endangered.
The last species NOAA delisted was in 1994, when the eastern North Pacific gray whale was taken off the threatened species list.
Yahoo buys image-recognition startup for Flickr
SUNNYVALE, Calif. (AP) — Yahoo's latest acquisition will bring image-recognition technology to its Flickr service for sharing photos.
The Internet company is getting the new tools and expertise through its purchase of a startup called LookFlow. Financial terms of the deal announced Wednesday weren't disclosed.
It's a small acquisition, as have been most of the more than 20 deals that Yahoo has completed since hiring Marissa Mayer as its CEO 15 months ago. The one exception was the Internet blogging service Tumblr, which cost Yahoo Inc. $1.1 billion earlier this year.
Yahoo is picking up five LookFlow engineers in its latest deal.
Mayer, a former Google Inc. executive, has been particularly interesting in snapping up startups with expertise in making applications for smartphones and tablets.
Clint Eastwood's wife, Dina, files for divorce
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Clint Eastwood's second wife is ending their marriage.
Dina Eastwood cites irreconcilable differences in divorce papers filed Tuesday in Monterey County, Calif. The 48-year-old journalist and reality TV star is seeking spousal support and full physical custody of the couple's 16-year-old daughter.
Dina Eastwood filed for legal separation from the Oscar winner last month.
The Eastwoods have been married since March 1996 and lived in Carmel. They met when she was assigned to interview the 83-year-old actor for her TV news station.
Clint Eastwood was previously married to Maggie Johnson from 1953 to 1984.