SF News

First Lady Michelle Obama Visit To SF This Weekend Postponed As Shutdown Continues

A fundraiser brunch with First Lady Michelle Obama and other democratic leaders scheduled for this weekend has been postponed in the wake of the partial federal shutdown.

The Women's Brunch with U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, on Sunday at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco has been postponed to an undetermined date, according to Adam Russell from Rep. Sam Farr's office.

Farr, D-Monterey, had planned to host a bus to take 40 women from his district to the event, Russell said.

The theme of the event at the hotel, located at 950 Mason St., was women empowerment.

With Congress unable to pass a budget by the end of September, dozens of federal agencies and programs deemed "non-essential" have been closed for a week and a half.

Obama's stop in San Francisco was part of a fundraising effort for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

 

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Assemblyman Ting Launches Health Care Enrollment Campaign

State Assemblyman Phil Ting today launched a campaign aimed at helping people enroll in a health plan as required by the federal Affordable Care Act.

Ting, D-San Francisco, organized a health and wellness fair today on the San Francisco State University campus to help the uninsured get started with the enrollment process, the assemblyman's spokesman Anthony Matthews said.

With Ting today were representatives from Covered California, San Francisco State University and Young Invincibles, a group dedicated to assisting young uninsured adults in getting health care coverage, Matthews said.

"Millions of our fellow citizens are now eligible for health insurance but they won't be covered unless we seize the moment and help each other," Ting said in a statement.

A central focus in the campaign of the Mandarin-speaking Ting is to help clarify things for those who don't speak English as a first language, according to Matthews.

There will be translators helping in several languages, including Chinese and Spanish, to assist in the pre-enrollment process so no one will be overlooked, Matthews said.

"My passion is to ensure that limited English skills are never an obstacle," added Ting.

Two additional events are scheduled for later this month.

The first is at 6 p.m. on Oct. 23 at the West Bay Conference Center at 1290 Fillmore St., and the second is at 10 a.m. on Oct. 26 at the San Francisco County Fair Building at 1199 Ninth Ave.

Matthews said Ting is working with other legislators to schedule similar events in the future.

Open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act began Oct. 1.

Anyone uninsured has until March 31, 2014, to enroll in a health plan.

 

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State AG Sues Career Colleges Chain For Alleged Deceptive Advertising

California Attorney General Kamala Harris sued Corinthian Colleges Inc., the parent company of a chain of career-preparation colleges, in San Francisco Superior Court today for alleged false advertising and marketing about its job placement rates.

The lawsuit alleges that Corinthian, a for-profit company based in Santa Ana, deliberately targets low-income, vulnerable Californians with deceptive and untrue advertisements about its job placement success.

"CCI is selling these expensive programs to students throughout California, many of whom head single-parent families and have annual incomes that are near the federal poverty line," the lawsuit alleges.

The defendants in the lawsuit are both Corinthian and several of its subsidiaries, including Heald College, which is based in San Francisco and operates in Concord, Hayward, San Jose and other Northern California cities.

The colleges offer career training in areas such as business, medical assisting, criminal justice and transportation.

Harris said that about 26,000 of the company's 80,000 students nationwide are Californians.

The lawsuit is based on claims of unfair business practices toward students as well securities fraud in connection with alleged deception of investors.

It also alleges that Corinthian is violating a 2007 injunction issued in Los Angeles County Superior Court that prohibited the company from making false or misleading statements about its program and job placement record.

The suit asks for a new injunction, civil financial penalties and restitution to stock purchasers.

A spokesman for Corinthian was not immediately available for comment.

 

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Thursday Midday News Roundup

BART Talks Expected To Resume Later Today As Strike Looms

BART management and its labor unions are expected to return to the bargaining table later today to try to avoid a possible strike that could potentially begin as soon as midnight tonight, BART spokesman Jim Allison said.

BART management negotiators were briefing the transit agency's directors on the contract talks at their board meeting this morning.

Cecille Isidro, a spokeswoman for Service Employees International Union Local 1021, which represents 1,430 mechanics, custodians and clerical workers, said union leaders hope that BART General Manager Grace Crunican will participate in the contract talks today.

"We need to reach an agreement as soon as possible, and she needs to be at the table," Isidro said.

Crunican previously has said she doesn't need to be at the bargaining table because BART's negotiators know what management's position is.

BART management began negotiating with SEIU Local 1021 and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555, which represents 945 station agents, train operators and clerical workers, on April 1.

The workers previously went on strike for four and a half days at the beginning of July but finally agreed to Gov. Jerry Brown's request that they return to the bargaining table for another 30 days.

When the second round of talks failed, Brown asked for a 60-day cooling-off period, and that period ends at midnight tonight.

Union leaders said Monday evening that they weren't ready to give their customary 72-hour strike notice, but also said they were keeping all of their options on the table, including going on strike.

The notice is a courtesy but is not mandatory.

According to Allison, BART and the unions remain split on issues such as wages and employees' contributions to health care and pension costs.

SEIU Local 1021 and ATU Local 1555 alleged in a joint statement Wednesday night that BART negotiators "pulled the rug from underneath the unions as well as the entire Bay Area" by withdrawing an offer that had brought the parties close to an agreement.

But Allison said "any suggestion that BART offered a proposal and withdrew it is categorically untrue" and blamed the confusion on "a miscommunication that wasn't on BART's part."

SJSU Lockdown Lifted After Police Investigate Report Of Gunman On Campus

A lockdown at San Jose State University ended late this morning after police investigated a report of a gunman and came up empty-handed, a university spokeswoman said.

University police received a call around 9 a.m. from a student who reported seeing a gunman at Sweeney Hall, in the southern part of the campus near San Salvador Street.

University spokeswoman Pat Lopes Harris said police considered it a credible tip and closed down Sweeney Hall, and advised the entire campus about the sighting, Harris said.

She said 300 students and faculty members were on lockdown inside Sweeney Hall until just before 11 a.m.

Police did not find the alleged gunman, who was described as a white male with a handgun dressed in dark attire, Lopes Harris said.

Just before police gave the "all-clear" around 11 a.m., 22-year-old student Katie Herr's father, Gerry Jensen, arrived at the campus.

Jensen said he had received a text message from his daughter that said there was a gunman in her building and that her classroom was locked.

"I came down as a concerned parent," Jensen said.

Harris said police had some difficulty searching buildings because of the lockdown, with students and faculty refusing to open doors.

Oakland A's Fans, Pink Concertgoers Expected To Clog Roadways

Hordes of fans clad in green and yellow are expected to fill the O.co Coliseum this evening for the deciding game in the American League Division Series between the Oakland A's and the Detroit Tigers.

The series is tied 2-2 going into today's game, with the winner of tonight's game advancing to American League Championship Series against the Boston Red Sox.

The first pitch is scheduled for 5:07 p.m., which means there will be extra crowds on BART during the afternoon commute, BART spokesman Jim Allison said.

He said there will be special-event trains to accommodate the anticipated crowds at the Coliseum station.

Last Friday, when the A's played the first game of the series at O.co Coliseum, there were approximately 440,000 trips made on the system -- one of BART's busiest days this year, Allison said.

Today should be even busier, he said.

For one, there is also a 7:30 p.m. P!nk concert at the Oracle Arena, next to the O.co Coliseum.

And Thursdays are always one of the busiest days of the week, Allison said.

P!nk is performing with Danish rock band New Politics as part of her "The Truth About Love Tour."

"We encourage riders to not linger too long at the Arena," Allison said.

BART trains will run during normal hours and not extend beyond closing time, even if the show runs late.

Metropolitan Transportation Commission spokesman John Goodwin said regional transit officials are encouraging people to ride BART today.

"BART is going to be the best way to go," he said.

The Bay Bridge will be congested, and with this combination of events, there were "will be a lot of people descending at the intersection of (Interstate Highway) 880 and 66th Avenue," he said.

The Alameda-Contra Costa Transit will be operating normal bus service, he said.

Today's A's game will be nerve-wracking for fans, who last saw their team advance to the American League Championship Series in 2006.

"My stomach's churning," A's blogger and longtime fan Rhamesis Muncada, 37, said this morning.

He noted that the game feels like déjà vu, with the A's facing Detroit pitcher Justin Verlander -- just like in the fifth game in the ALDS in 2012.

Oakland Anniversary Celebration To Mark 2 Years Since 'Occupy Oakland' Formation

Today marks two years since the Occupy movement set up camp in downtown Oakland, and an anniversary event this afternoon will honor the political activism spurred by the movement.

Occupy Oakland built a camp at Frank H. Ogawa Plaza the afternoon of Oct. 10, 2011 as part of the then-burgeoning Occupy Wall Street campaign.

One of the group's first actions was to dub the site "Oscar Grant Plaza."

The camp was officially dismantled about a month later after several violent confrontations between police and protesters.

"Occupy" began in New York City and spread across the country and world as a way to protest economic disparity and the plight of the so-called "99 percent."

In the years since, its members have taken on various issues from environmental degradation to immigrants' rights and beyond.

At today's anniversary event, the theme will revolve around the California prisoners' hunger strike that started in July and related issues, organizer JP Massar said.

Starting at 2 p.m., music will entertain attendees, followed by a series of guest speakers.

Sarah Shourd, a UC Berkeley graduate who was detained in Iran with her now-husband and friend after they crossed the border while hiking in Iraq on July 31, 2009, will address the crowd.

Shourd will speak about her work as an activist since her return.

She and the rest of the trio were accused of espionage and entering the country illegally.

Shourd was held for more than a year in an Iranian prison.

Massar said the Occupy anniversary event will be a chance to review the work done by activists, who have continued to meet at the plaza every Sunday.

There will be an hour devoted to various "spin-off" committees to report what they have been working on and what they are planning for future action.

The groups include those advocating for the family of 18-year-old Alan Blueford, who was fatally shot by Oakland police in May 2012, and those protesting the closure of the Berkeley post office.

The anniversary event will also be an opportunity for attendees to "reaffirm our solidarity with the BART workers," event organizers Mike Wilson said.

Once the sun goes down, documentaries about Occupy Oakland and other groups will be screened.

There will be donated food provided at the celebration.

"It's not to wax nostalgic but to have a good time and come together," Massar said.

Family Of Missing Toddler Daphne Webb To Hold Vigil For Her In Oakland

The family of missing Oakland toddler Daphne Webb will hold a candlelight prayer vigil today to mark her second birthday as well as the three-month anniversary of the day she was reported missing.

Daphne's father, 49-year-old John Anthony Webb of Oakland, reported her missing shortly after 11 a.m. on July 10, telling police that she had been abducted by a stranger shortly after 11 a.m. that day while she sat in a parked car with his 87-year-old mother while he went inside the Gazza Supermarket at 7838 International Blvd. to buy something.

She remains missing, despite numerous searches by Oakland police and a $20,000 reward for information that helps authorities find her.

Daphne's maternal grandfather, Kevin Davis, said in a statement, "We still have the Oakland police and the FBI doing all that they can do. It's still a priority. We still have our hopes up."

The vigil will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. today at the corner of International Boulevard and 79th Avenue, the location where John Webb reported Daphne was missing.

Oakland police spokeswoman Johnna Watson wasn't immediately available for comment today.

She has previously said that the Police Department's primary focus is finding Daphne alive but that they're also looking into the possibility that foul play was involved.

Watson has said the Police Department's missing persons and homicide units are both investigating the disappearance.

Oakland police arrested John Webb on suspicion of felony child endangerment the day of her disappearance because he had left her in the care of his mother, who suffers from dementia.

But Webb was released from custody two days later, after the Alameda County District Attorney's Office declined to file charges against him.

Watson has said that Webb remains a person of interest in the case but isn't a suspect.

Daphne is described by police as 2 feet tall and 30 pounds.

She is black with short, curly black hair and a deformity in her left ear.

She was last seen wearing orange two-piece pajamas with pink hearts.

Suspect Arrested At Nearby Residence After Overnight Standoff In Santa Rosa

A lengthy standoff in northeast Santa Rosa ended this morning when a man believed to have barricaded himself inside his home was found outside nearby residence and was arrested, a police sergeant said.

The man was found around 10:15 a.m., Sgt. John Snetsinger said.

"He's in custody and everybody's safe," Snetsinger said.

Officers responded to the man's home at about 11:20 p.m. Wednesday after a woman called to report that her husband had fired shots at her and a locksmith she had hired to help her get back into her home after her husband locked her out, police said.

No one was hit by the gunfire, but the bullets struck a nearby vehicle, police said.

A SWAT team and a hostage negotiating team were sent to the home, located in the 3800 block of Sedgemore Drive near Rincon Ridge Park.

Overnight, negotiators attempted to communicate with the 43-year-old man, police said.

It was finally discovered late this morning that he was in the backyard of a nearby home, and he was taken into custody.

His name has not yet been released.

Fatality Reported In Highway 12 Head-On Crash East Of Rio Vista

At least one person died in a head-on crash this morning on state Highway 12 near Isleton, just east of the Solano County border, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The crash, which involved a big-rig and car, was reported at 7:48 a.m. on Highway 12 near the Mokelumne River Bridge, east of Rio Vista, according to the CHP.

The accident had the entire two-lane highway shut down. 

Man Arrested For Fatal Tenderloin Shooting In July

Police have arrested a man in connection with a fatal shooting in San Francisco's Tenderloin neighborhood this July, a police spokesman said today.

Leonard Colvin, 41, of San Francisco, was arrested Monday for the murder of 39-year-old Emmett Byron, Officer Gordon Shyy said.

Colvin is believed to have shot Byron in the 200 block of Turk Street, near Leavenworth Street, at about 11:40 p.m. on July 20, according to police.

Byron was transported to San Francisco General Hospital.

He succumbed to his injuries about a month later, on Aug. 19, police said.

Although an arrest has now been made in the slaying, police are continuing to investigate the shooting.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at (415) 553-1145 or anonymously at (415) 575-4444.

Anonymous texts can also be sent to TIP411 with SFPD at the beginning of the message.

Infant Who Died Suspicious Death Early Tuesday Identified

A 7-month-old infant who died in what police are calling a suspicious death early Tuesday morning has been identified by San Francisco medical examiner's office as Julian Martinez.

Julian was brought to San Francisco General Hospital by his mother and another family member around 12:30 a.m. Tuesday, police said.

He was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Investigators have not determined the cause of the death or released any information about why it is considered suspicious.

The car used to take Julian to the hospital has been confiscated as part of the investigation, Shyy said.

Police have also searched the house the baby was at in the first block of Monterey Boulevard, and have interviewed family members.

As of this morning, no arrest had been made in connection with the death, Shyy said.

Light-Rail Vehicle Involved In Crash, No Injuries Or Delays Reported

A San Francisco Municipal Railway light-rail vehicle was involved in a minor collision this morning, a railway spokesman said.

The collision, between an outbound N-Judah light-rail vehicle and a car, was reported at 8:07 a.m. in the area of Judah Street and 24th Avenue, spokesman Paul Rose said.

Witnesses to the crash told investigators that the driver of the car, which was traveling on 24th Avenue, ran a stop sign while crossing Judah Street, causing the collision, according to Rose.

No injuries or delays were reported, Rose said.

All passengers on the light-rail vehicle were taken by bus shuttle to 19th Avenue, according to Rose.

Rose said the crash was cleared at about 9 a.m.

The incident remains under investigation.

Santa Cruz Man In Critical Condition Following Explosion Linked To Butane Hash Oil Production

A man was severely burned in an explosion that occurred during the manufacturing of hash oil at a home in Santa Cruz on Wednesday afternoon, police and fire officials said.

At 1:24 p.m. on Wednesday, fire crews responded to a report of an explosion in the 100 block of Walk Circle, near Delaware Avenue.

Witnesses told police they saw a badly burned male occupant drive away from the home, police said.

Upon arrival, firefighters found light smoke coming from the residence and the front windows blown out.

Fire crews turned off all electricity and gas to the building before making entry.

According to fire officials, there was no fire inside the building, but remnants of a large explosion were evident.

Signs of intense heat were found in the bathroom.

Damage to walls, doors and windows were also evident, fire officials said.

The building was not occupied when firefighters arrived on scene.

According to fire officials, a 29-year-old male occupant of the residence had already left the scene and was headed to Dominican Hospital with his girlfriend prior to the arrival of firefighters.

The occupant had suffered significant burns and was flown to a Bay Area trauma center for medical treatment, fire officials said.

Two dogs with burns from the explosion were removed from the property, police said.

The cause of the explosion was determined to be a result of the use of butane while manufacturing hash oil inside the bathroom of the residence, according to fire officials.

Police found a large quantity of marijuana and over a dozen butane canisters in the bathroom.

Santa Cruz police are continuing to investigate the explosion.

According to the Santa Cruz Police Department, this explosion is the second caused by butane hash oil production in Santa Cruz in the last 10 days.

Hundreds To Dance West Coast Swing 'Til Dawn At 'Boogie By The Bay' In Burlingame

Dancers from all over the world are flocking to the Bay Area this weekend for Boogie by the Bay, a West Coast swing dance convention taking place in Burlingame.

Event organizer Andy Bouman said about 1,500 dancers from as far away as France, England, Australia, Singapore, Korea and Brazil will fill the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport beginning tonight.

Top West Coast swing dancers will be performing and teaching workshops at the event, including Benji Schwimmer, who won the second season of the Fox TV show "So You Think You Can Dance" in 2006.

The term "swing dancing" conjures images of World War II-era Lindy hop and girls in polka-dot dresses being tossed in the air by their partners.

West Coast swing is different.

It is danced in a slot, mostly to contemporary music and blues, and is smooth rather than bouncy.

Bouman said there are a number of tales as to how West Coast swing evolved, but the one he feels is most likely is that after WWII, when the big band era wrapped up, the music changed.

Clubs started hiring smaller, bluesy bands and the change carried over to the music, he said.

"I think the dance is driven by the music," Bouman said.

While West Coast swing is not as popular as a dance like salsa, those who dance it are fiercely devoted and describe the hobby as an addiction.

At a convention like Boogie by the Bay, there are workshops and competitions during the day, followed by performances and social dancing at night.

The social dancing can go until 7 a.m. or beyond.

"People will dance until they can't move, and sometimes they will stay up even later," Bouman said.

He said he thinks part of the appeal of West Coast swing is that it is a partner dance that can be danced to "a lot of what people are hearing on the radio these days."

Popular songs include Top 40 hits by Rihanna, Jason Mraz and Usher, as well as timeless classics by Aretha Franklin and Michael Jackson.

People also like that they can bring creativity to the dance, Bouman said.

He invited those interested in trying West Coast swing to take some classes at the convention on Saturday and Sunday mornings, when there will be free beginners' workshops from 9 a.m. to noon taught by champions.

"These workshops are designed for anybody who is new to West Coast Swing or wanting to review the basics," he said.

The full schedule can be found online at www.boogiebythebay.org.

Oktoberun This Saturday In Redwood City

Hundreds will lace up their sneakers to either run a race or run for a beer at Redwood City's Old Courthouse Square this weekend, as the third annual Oktoberfest gets under way early Saturday morning.

Runners can participate in one of three races -- a half-marathon, a 5K or a 5Kolor Run midday, which is new this year, according to race director Rick Hunter.

The half marathon course is flat and scenic, Hunter said.

The mostly off-road course runs from downtown to the Bay Trail near Bair Island, and has runners traveling next to Steinberger Slough in Redwood Shores before it turns around.

The 5Ks take runners along city streets.

Race organizers are expecting more than 2,200 participants in the three events, and all race proceeds will benefit the Redwood City Education Foundation and the Redwood City Rotary Club's water purification project, H2OpenDoors.

Both Redwood City rotary clubs work together to put on these events, Hunter said.

Last year, the races raised about $50,000, he said.

The 5Kolor Run, is an un-timed race in which runners are blasted with paint along the route.

This race begins at 11 a.m., after the end of the other two races, which start at 8 a.m. and 8:15 a.m.

"It's a great race -- once you run, you can cool off and then have a beer and brats while you listen to German music," Hunter said.

Oktoberfest will continue throughout the day, with booths open until 9 p.m.

Patrons can stroll throughout the cordoned-off downtown, tasting strudels, bratwurst and pretzels while sipping on a variety of beers.

The Golden Gate Bavarian Club will perform, and The Internationals will play traditional music between noon and 6 p.m., according to organizers.

Throughout the day there will be side performances and entertainment.

An after-party begins at 9 at the Fox Theatre.

Runners have until race day to purchase a bib.

More information can be found online at www.oktoberfestandrun.com.

 

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Man Arrested For Fatal Tenderloin Shooting In July

Police have arrested a man in connection with a fatal shooting in San Francisco's Tenderloin neighborhood this July, a police spokesman said today.

Leonard Colvin, 41, of San Francisco, was arrested Monday for the murder of 39-year-old Emmett Byron, Officer Gordon Shyy said.

Colvin is believed to have shot Byron in the 200 block of Turk Street, near Leavenworth Street, at about 11:40 p.m. on July 20, according to police.

Byron was transported to San Francisco General Hospital.

He succumbed to his injuries about a month later, on Aug. 19, police said.

Although an arrest has now been made in the slaying, police are continuing to investigate the shooting.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at (415) 553-1145 or anonymously at (415) 575-4444.

Anonymous texts can also be sent to TIP411 with SFPD at the beginning of the message.

 

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BART Talks Expected To Resume Later Today As Strike Looms

BART management and its labor unions are expected to return to the bargaining table later today to try to avoid a possible strike that could potentially begin as soon as midnight tonight, BART spokesman Jim Allison said.

BART management negotiators were briefing the transit agency's directors on the contract talks at their board meeting this morning.

Cecille Isidro, a spokeswoman for Service Employees International Union Local 1021, which represents 1,430 mechanics, custodians and clerical workers, said union leaders hope that BART General Manager Grace Crunican will participate in the contract talks today.

"We need to reach an agreement as soon as possible, and she needs to be at the table," Isidro said.

Crunican previously has said she doesn't need to be at the bargaining table because BART's negotiators know what management's position is.

BART management began negotiating with SEIU Local 1021 and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555, which represents 945 station agents, train operators and clerical workers, on April 1.

The workers previously went on strike for four and a half days at the beginning of July but finally agreed to Gov. Jerry Brown's request that they return to the bargaining table for another 30 days.

When the second round of talks failed, Brown asked for a 60-day cooling-off period, and that period ends at midnight tonight.

Union leaders said Monday evening that they weren't ready to give their customary 72-hour strike notice, but also said they were keeping all of their options on the table, including going on strike.

The notice is a courtesy but is not mandatory.

According to Allison, BART and the unions remain split on issues such as wages and employees' contributions to health care and pension costs.

SEIU Local 1021 and ATU Local 1555 alleged in a joint statement Wednesday night that BART negotiators "pulled the rug from underneath the unions as well as the entire Bay Area" by withdrawing an offer that had brought the parties close to an agreement.

But Allison said "any suggestion that BART offered a proposal and withdrew it is categorically untrue" and blamed the confusion on "a miscommunication that wasn't on BART's part."

 

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Infant Who Died Suspicious Death Early Tuesday Identified

A 7-month-old infant who died in what police are calling a suspicious death early Tuesday morning has been identified by San Francisco medical examiner's office as Julian Martinez.

Julian was brought to San Francisco General Hospital by his mother and another family member around 12:30 a.m. Tuesday, police said.

He was pronounced dead at the hospital. Investigators have not determined the cause of the death or released any information about why it is considered suspicious.

The car used to take Julian to the hospital has been confiscated as part of the investigation, Shyy said.

Police have also searched the house the baby was at in the first block of Monterey Boulevard, and have interviewed family members.

As of this morning, no arrest had been made in connection with the death, Shyy said.

 

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Light-Rail Vehicle Involved In Crash, No Injuries Or Delays Reported

A San Francisco Municipal Railway light-rail vehicle was involved in a minor collision this morning, a railway spokesman said.

The collision, between an outbound N-Judah light-rail vehicle and a car, was reported at 8:07 a.m. in the area of Judah Street and 24th Avenue, spokesman Paul Rose said.

Witnesses to the crash told investigators that the driver of the car, which was traveling on 24th Avenue, ran a stop sign while crossing Judah Street, causing the collision, according to Rose.

No injuries or delays were reported, Rose said.

All passengers on the light-rail vehicle were taken by bus shuttle to 19th Avenue, according to Rose.

Rose said the crash was cleared at about 9 a.m.

The incident remains under investigation.

 

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Thursday Morning News Roundup

Aldon Smith Charged With Three Felonies, Two Misdemeanors In San Jose

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith was charged Wednesday with three felony counts of illegal possession of an assault weapon and two misdemeanor counts of DUI for two separate cases in 2012 and last month, according to the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office.

Smith, 24, is expected to surrender on an arrest warrant for the gun charges later this month.

If convicted of the felonies, he could face up to four years and four months in custody, prosecutors said.

The 49ers star faces the weapons charges after they were found by Santa Clara County sheriff's deputies in his home in unincorporated San Jose after a June 29, 2012, party that turned violent when gang members showed up and paid a $10 admission fee, prosecutors said.

Deputies recovered two rifles in Smith's bedroom, including an Armalite AR-10(T) rifle, and a subsequent search of the home two weeks later found three other firearms, including two Bushmaster assault rifles, Deputy District Attorney Brian Buckelew said.

None of the five rifles had been registered with the California Department of Justice, prosecutors said.

Deputies also located several large capacity ammunition magazines lying on the floor of Smith's bedroom and a cache of bullets of several different calibers, expended and unexpended, in his bedside table, prosecutors said.

Sheriff's officials submitted the case to the district attorney's office in July and prosecutors began a secondary investigation that determined three of the firearms were illegal assault weapons under California law, Buckelew said.

Smith bought three assault weapons on two separate occasions in Arizona in 2011, including two in Phoenix from a gun dealer on Dec. 10, 2011, a day before the 49ers played the Arizona Cardinals, prosecutors said.

The assault rifles are legal to own in Arizona but cannot be purchased or even possessed in California, according to Buckelew.

According to prosecutors, during a confrontation with guests at the 2012 party, Smith fired his .45-caliber handgun twice from his home's balcony and later fired several more times in the air.

Another guest shot and injured two people and Smith himself was later stabbed, prosecutors said.

Another person went into Smith's bedroom, removed one of his assault weapons and then walked around with it during the party, prosecutors said.

Stanford Professor Chalks Up Nobel Prize Win To 'Hard Work,' 'Perseverance'

Michael Levitt, a professor at the Stanford University in Palo Alto named a winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry Wednesday, said he attributed his success "to a lot of hard work and perseverance."

Levitt won the Nobel Prize with two others for using computers to analyze the structures of biological molecules to understand how they work as a first step in designing drugs, according to Stanford Report, a university online news magazine.

Levitt, 66, said he heard about winning the prize during a surprise 1 a.m. phone call from a Nobel award official Wednesday morning to his Skype account that was forwarded to his cellphone.

"What has really excited me about my scientific career is that you get to do what you really like," Levitt said at a news conference held Wednesday morning at Stanford, where he is a researcher and teacher.

"You work with people who get younger and every year," Levitt said.

Levitt, a professor of structural biology at Stanford University's School of Medicine, shared the prize and its $1.2 million purse with Marvin Karplus of Harvard and the University of Strasbourg in France and Arieh Warshel of the University of Southern California.

He recalled his early work with computers in the 1960s at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and other research he did in Israel and at Cambridge, England, where received his doctorate.

While studying at Cambridge and in trips to Israel, he and others "laid out the basis for computational biology," he said.

"Computers have not been sufficiently appreciated in biology," Levitt said.

He credited his winning the prize to "like many things, a lot of hard work and perseverance, and its really important not to give up, it's really important to be stubborn."

Antioch Man Killed In Tuesday Night Shooing Identified

A man who was shot and killed in the front yard of an Antioch home Tuesday night has been identified.

Antioch resident Andrew Walker, 27, was killed in a shooting reported around 8:05 p.m. Tuesday in the 2200 block of Lopez Drive, near Mission Elementary School, according to a Contra Costa County coroner's deputy.

Officers arriving on the scene found Walker in a residential front yard suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, according to police.

He was taken to a hospital where he died from his injuries a short time later.

Information about possible suspects or a motive for the killing was not available and police said the investigation is ongoing.

Cal Chancellor Urges Richmond High Students To 'Achieve UC'

"Something great is going on here. Be part of it."

Those were the instructions given to a roomful of Richmond High School upperclassmen during a visit to the campus Wednesday morning from University of California at Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks and other university leaders.

The school, located on 23rd Street in a gritty neighborhood near the Richmond-San Pablo border, is the first of a handful of high schools in low-income communities statewide to receive a visit from the new UC Berkeley chancellor as part of an initiative called Achieve UC.

Richmond High's large percentage of low-income students was only one factor in university officials' decision to kick off the series of visits there.

Impressive academic statistics, like students' 90 percent acceptance rate into UCs over the past three years, also made the campus a likely choice.

"Every year, thousands of students just like you come to the University of California," Dirks told the audience of about 200 of the school's highest academic achievers Wednesday morning.

Dirks said some 30 to 40 percent of UC students represent the first generation in their families to attend college.

About a third of UC students transfer to one of the university's nine campuses from a community college, he added.

The chancellor told students not to worry about finances, citing the wide variety of scholarships available to attend UC Berkeley and other UC campuses.

Families earning less than $80,000 per year pay nothing in tuition at a UC, he said.

"This is a dream that you can make real and we are here today to help you make it real," Dirks said.

University officials said UC enrolls a greater share of low-income students that any other top public or private university in the nation, and more than half of UC undergraduate students receive some type of grant or scholarship.

Dirks and other UC officials Wednesday morning urged students to take advantage of the half-dozen college access and advising programs at the school, many of which are funded through the UC Berkeley Center for Educational Partnerships.

2-Alarm Fire Contained At Dried Fruit Packing Company In Vacaville

Firefighters responded to a 2-alarm fire at the Mariani Packing Company in Vacaville Wednesday afternoon, fire officials said.

Vacaville Fire Chief John Jansen said the fire was reported at 4:10 p.m. and burned cardboard and boxes in the middle of the company's warehouse, in the 500 block of Crocker Drive.

The blaze activated the sprinkler system and has been contained, Jansen said around 4:50 p.m.

Firefighters from Vacaville, Dixon, Fairfield and the Vacaville Fire Protection District responded to the blaze, Jansen said.

The company grows, dries, processes and packages dried fruit snacks.

Woman Ordered To Stand Trial In Oakland On Charge She Murdered Father

A judge ruled Wednesday that prosecutors presented sufficient evidence to have a Hayward woman stand trial on a murder charge for the stabbing death of her 73-year-old father during a violent struggle at his Fremont home in April.

At the end of a preliminary hearing for 29-year-old Megan Desiree O'Connell that spanned parts of two days, Alameda County Superior Court Judge Jon Rolefson also ordered her to stand trial on a felony elder abuse charge and a misdemeanor charge that she disobeyed an order to stay away from her father.

O'Connell was arrested on the night of April 4 after officers responded to a disturbance at the home of Navarro Esguerra, her father, in the 37800 block of Argyle Road at about 7:15 p.m. that evening.

They found him lying on the kitchen floor in a pool of blood, Fremont police spokeswoman Geneva Bosques said.

Esguerra was pronounced dead at a hospital a short time later.

Police said the initial indication is that Esguerra died of blunt force trauma to his head but authorities later ruled that he died from stab wounds.

Officers found O'Connell in a bathroom inside the home and took her into custody after a short but violent struggle, Bosques said.

She said O'Connell fought "viciously" by swinging her arms and legs, even after she had been restrained, so eventually officers put her in a wrap and a protective hood to stop her from spitting at them.

Fremont police said their investigation indicates that O'Connell arrived at her father's home in violation of a restraining order and got into a violent argument with her father, prompting her mother to call police.

O'Connell's lawyer, Frank Lang, said at the end of her hearing Wednesday that, "I don't think the evidence shows that this was a first- or second-degree murder. If anything, it may show that there was mutual combat or she acted in self-defense."

Lang said, "At best, there was a sudden flare of argument and the decedent (Esguerra) pushed the defendant (O'Connell) and the defendant pushed back."

The defense attorney said, "There was no premeditation or malice aforethought and at best you have a manslaughter charge."

Lang urged Rolefson to only order O'Connell to stand trial on a manslaughter charge but Rolefson said he believes prosecutors produced enough evidence against her to have her stand trial for murder.

Lang also asked Rolefson not to have O'Connell stand trial on an enhancement allegation that she used a knife to kill her father, arguing that "there was no direct testimony that there was the use of a knife and no indication of how it was used."

But Rolefson said he believes it's clear that "a knife or a similar weapon was used" because Esguerra died of multiple incise stab wounds and there was evidence that there were knives in the kitchen of his home.

O'Connell, who was dressed in a red jail jumpsuit and was shackled at her hearing Wednesday, remains in custody at the Santa Rita Jail in Dublin without bail.

Two Victims Of Alleged Sex Abuse At Sunnyvale Daycare Were Under 9 Years Old

Two alleged victims of sexual abuse at a childcare facility in Sunnyvale were of elementary school age at the time, including one who was 5 years old, according to the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office.

The girls had been at the facility, Belen's Childcare Home at 790 S. Wolfe Road in Sunnyvale, at the time of the alleged abuse and eventually told their parents about it, Deputy District Attorney Murat Ozgur said.

One of the victims reported being abused at the daycare between Oct. 2, 2010, and Oct. 1, 2011, when she was 5, and the other said she was abused between May 1, 2012, and this past Sept. 20 when she was 6 to 8 years old, Ozgur said.

The district attorney's office has charged Jose Cristobal Velandria, 68, with five felony counts of lewd and lascivious acts by force on a child under age 14 in connection with the abuse allegations, Ozgur said.

Velandria is accused of abusing the children while he himself lived at the daycare facility, a business operated by a relative of his from out of the relative's home, Ozgur said.

Velandria was arraigned on the charges last Friday and is scheduled to appear at a plea hearing in Department 88 in Superior Court in Palo Alto on Monday, Ozgur said.

He is being held without bail at the Santa Clara County Main Jail, according to the jail's website.

The charges against Velandria include one count of lewd and lascivious acts on a child under 14 involving the girl who was at the daycare from 2010 to 2011 and four counts involving the second child there from 2012 to this year, Ozgur said.

Petaluma Man Charged With Pipe Bomb Possession

A Petaluma man was charged in Sonoma County Superior Court Wednesday afternoon with felony pipe bomb possession charges.

Ismail Moylan, 30, of Petaluma, did not appear in court for an arraignment Wednesday afternoon because of medical reasons.

He is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon.

Moylan is charged with possession of an explosive device, possession of an explosive device in an inhabited area and possession of materials used to make an explosive device, Chief Deputy District Attorney Bud McMahon said.

He is being held under $1 million bail in the Sonoma County jail. McMahon said.

Moylan faces six years in prison on the charges.

Four plastic pipe bombs were found Monday and Tuesday in the garage of the home Moylan shares with his mother in the 900 block of Quarry Street in north Petaluma, McMahon said.

Petaluma police went to the two-story residence around 5:30 p.m. Monday after a family member said Moylan was despondent and might have a gun, police Lt. Tim Lyons said.

Moylan called a friend and said he was going to kill himself with a gun, McMahon said.

Moylan had legal possession of a gun that was found in his vehicle. Moylan also was in possession of drugs without a prescription, McMahon said.

Moylan gave himself up to police and was initially arrested on the drug charge and for possession of a pipe bomb and was booked in the Sonoma County jail under $25,000 bail.

His bail was raised to $1 million when the other pipe bombs were found.

The Sonoma County Sheriff's Office's bomb squad and the FBI remained at the scene Tuesday investigating the pipe bombs and materials used to make them, Lyons said.

Defense attorney Michael Li, who met privately with Moylan's family after the brief court hearing Wednesday, said Moylan "has had suicidal ideations."

Li said Moylan is unemployed and is being held in the jail in a "security cell" because of his suicide threat Monday.

Driver Killed In Early Morning HWY 80 Crash In Richmond Identified 

The driver of a minivan killed in a crash on Interstate Highway 80 in Richmond early Wednesday morning has been identified as a 50-year-old San Jose resident.

A Contra Costa County coroner's deputy identified Manuel Garcia as the man killed in the solo collision on westbound Highway 80 near Central Avenue around 1:40 a.m.

A short time before the crash, California Highway Patrol officers working in a construction zone on westbound Highway 80 between Potrero Avenue and Carlson Boulevard heard a grinding sound and saw Garcia's Kia Sedona minivan driving with a flat tire, according to the CHP.

Concerned for the safety of the driver and surrounding motorists, the officers tried to stop the minivan, CHP officials said.

During their attempt, the minivan veered left and crashed into a concrete median wall, then headed across lanes of traffic and down an embankment adjacent to the Central Avenue exit, according to the CHP.

Garcia, the minivan's sole occupant, suffered fatal injuries in the crash and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The crash is under investigation, and anyone with further information is asked to call the CHP at (510) 450-3821 or (800) TELL-CHP.

Cal Professor's Colleagues Celebrate Her Nomination To Lead Federal Reserve

Janet Yellen's colleagues and friends at the University of California at Berkeley Wednesday celebrated her nomination by President Obama to be the next chair of the Federal Reserve.

If Yellen, 67, is confirmed by the U.S. Senate, she would be the first woman to head the central bank, which manages the nation's money supply and sets economic policy to promote the twin goals of stable prices and maximum sustainable output and employment.

She would succeed Ben Bernanke, who will step down in January.

Yellen is an emeritus professor at the UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, where she taught macroeconomics from 1980 to 2006.

She's also a former president and chief executive of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.

Yellen, a native of Brooklyn, is married to George Akerlof, a UC Berkeley economist and emeritus professor who won the Nobel Prize in economics in 2001, along with Joseph Stiglitz, who had been one of her professors when she earned her Ph.D. at Yale University.

Berkeley-Haas Dean Rich Lyons said of Yellen in a statement Wednesday, "I could not think of a sharper mind or a more thoughtful citizen to lead the world's most influential central bank in its effort to regain the economy's full potential. She is part of a rich and proud history of Haas faculty who continue to serve the nation at the highest levels of government."

James Wilcox, a Haas-Berkeley professor and former senior economist at the Federal Reserve, said "Janet Yellen has the knowledge, the experience inside and outside the Fed, the experience inside and outside of Washington, and the temperament to lead the Fed effectively, especially in the conditions that the economy faces and will perhaps face over the next few years."

Wilcox added, "By force of her arguments, openness to those of others, and record of accomplishments, Yellen has earned great credibility with and the respect of central bankers here and abroad, of economists, of business, of legislators, and of policy analysts."

Earl Cheit, dean emeritus of Berkeley-Haas, said, "I hired her and have been pleased ever since. At the Haas School, her colleagues and students admired her scholarship and her teaching."

Cheit said, "As a dean, I especially admired her willingness to be an institution builder. To me, her defining characteristic is quiet competence."

Berkeley-Haas officials said much of Yellen's research at the university focused on unemployment and labor markets, monetary and fiscal policies, and international trade and investment policy.

Earlier this year, she was named a Berkeley Fellow, joining an honorific society of friends of UC Berkeley who have been chosen in recognition of their contributions to the campus.

Yellen is known for being an "easy money" advocate who favors low interest rates to try to help boost the economy and reduce unemployment.

Yellen said the Fed is actively promoting a faster economic recovery by large-scale purchases of assets such as government bonds, also known as quantitative easing, and communications about the future course of monetary policy, known as forward guidance.

Parole Granted For Man Who Killed His Accomplice In 1985 Jewelry Heist

A convicted bank robber who killed his accomplice while struggling with a San Mateo jewelry storeowner during an armed robbery in 1985 was found suitable for parole on Tuesday, his fifth attempt at freedom.

At a parole hearing at San Quentin State Prison, the board of Parole Hearings Panel found Larry Ray Williams, 60, suitable for parole, amid opposition from the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office.

The case will now proceed to administrative review and to the governor's office for further examination.

Williams was one of two armed robbers who scuffled with a Third Avenue jewelry storeowner before William's gun fired, killing his accomplice, according to the district attorney's office.

Williams was convicted of first-degree murder with firearm use and robbery with a firearm on Jan. 30, 1987, after a two-week jury trial, according to the district attorney's office.

He was sentenced to 28 years to life in prison on Feb. 23, 1987.

Weather Forecast For The San Francisco Bay Area

Partly cloudy skies are likely in the Bay Area this morning becoming sunny later in the day.

Highs are likely to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with winds up to 15 mph.

Mostly clear skies are expected this evening. Lows are likely to be in the lower to mid 50s, with southwest winds up to 15 mph.

Partly cloudy skies are likely Friday morning.

Highs are expected to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with southwest winds up to 15 mph.

 

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Weather Forecast For The San Francisco Bay Area

Partly cloudy skies are likely in the Bay Area this morning becoming sunny later in the day.

Highs are likely to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with winds up to 15 mph.

Mostly clear skies are expected this evening.

Lows are likely to be in the lower to mid 50s, with southwest winds up to 15 mph.

Partly cloudy skies are likely Friday morning.

Highs are expected to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with southwest winds up to 15 mph.

 

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Weather Forecast For The San Francisco Bay Area

Sunny skies are likely in the Bay Area this morning.

Highs are likely to be in the lower 60s to mid 70s, with northwest winds up to 20 mph.

Clear skies are expected this evening.

Lows are likely to be in the mid 50s, with winds up to 20 mph.

Sunny skies are likely Friday morning.

Highs are expected to be in the upper 70s, with winds up to 20 mph.

 

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Police Identify Man Arrested On Suspicion Of Fatal Stabbing Of Dodgers Fan

San Francisco police have identified 21-year-old Michael Montgomery as the man arrested for allegedly fatally stabbing a Los Angeles Dodgers fan near AT&T Park on Wednesday night.

Montgomery, a Lodi resident, was arrested on suspicion of killing Jonathan Denver, 24, around 11:35 p.m. Wednesday near Third and Harrison streets, four blocks from where Denver and his family members had watched a game between the Giants and Dodgers earlier in the night.

No other information about the suspect was immediately released by police.

Denver, who was wearing Dodgers clothing and whose father is a security guard for the team, was apparently stabbed after an argument related to the rivalry between the Dodgers and Giants, San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr said today.

Suhr said Denver was with his father, brother and two other people at the Giants-Dodgers game but had left with them in the eighth inning and gone to a nearby bar.

After exiting the bar, the group encountered a group of Giants fans and there was "a back-and-forth" about the teams' rivalry, Suhr said.

A minor fight erupted but was quickly broken up, the chief said. Suhr said that what happened next remains unclear, but that one of the groups followed the other group and a second altercation ensued minutes later, during which Denver was stabbed.

He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where he died.

Suhr said two people were detained a short time later at Second and Howard streets and, during questioning by police, one "made incriminating statements" about the case.

The death of Denver, who worked as a plumber's apprentice for North Coast Plumbing, Heating & Sheet Metal Inc. in Fort Bragg, is the latest violent incident to mar the Giants-Dodgers rivalry.

In 2011, Giants fan Bryan Stow was beaten after the team's season opener at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, and suffered severe brain injuries.

Two people have been charged in the beating and are awaiting trial.

The Dodgers issued a statement this afternoon about the death.

"There is no rational explanation for this senseless act which resulted in Jonathan's death," team officials wrote. "The pain that this has caused his family and friends is unimaginable. Words are not enough to describe our sadness."

The Giants also released a statement about the killing.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time," the Giants' statement said. "While details are still emerging, we want to be clear that there is absolutely no place in our community for this type of senseless violence."

The Giants said they would observe a moment of silence in honor of Denver before today's 7:15 p.m. game.

The team is also holding a fundraiser for Stow after holding an earlier one on Tuesday.

Another is also planned for the team's season finale on Sunday against the San Diego Padres.

Suhr said police will continue sending undercover officers wearing Dodgers gear to tonight's game, along with other plainclothes officers, to ensure safety in and around the ballpark.

"There's no place at these games for violence," he said. "Nobody's life should be at stake."

 

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Police Find Cache Of Firearms At Home Of Suspect In Murder Of SFSU Student

A cache of assault rifles and other weapons were found at the home of a suspect arrested for an apparently unprovoked fatal shooting in San Francisco's Ingleside Heights neighborhood on Monday, the city's police chief said today.

Nikhom Thephakaysone, 30, was arrested on Tuesday outside his home in the city's Oceanview neighborhood on suspicion of the fatal shooting of 20-year-old Justin Valdez at about 9:50 p.m. Monday near Randolph and Bright streets.

Valdez was shot in the back as he was getting off a San Francisco Municipal Railway M-Ocean View light-rail vehicle, police Chief Greg Suhr said at a news conference this afternoon.

Investigators found surveillance footage from the Muni vehicle and were eventually able to identify Thephakaysone as the suspect.

When they went to his home in the 200 block of Lobos Street and arrested Thephakaysone, police found two assault rifles, knives, survival gear and about $20,000 in cash in his possession, Suhr said.

Suhr said the suspect lived at the home with his mother, stepfather and sister.

The chief said he did not know what Thephakaysone may have had planned with the various weapons, which included a Ruger .223-caliber rifle and a M+M M10-762 rifle.

"You'd be hard-pressed to understand why somebody would possess this sort of firepower," he said. "We're just glad nothing played out other than it did" with the death of Valdez.

The chief said both the victim and the suspect were students at San Francisco State University but did not know each other.

He said they both got onto the Muni vehicle at 19th and Holloway avenues but did not interact while onboard.

The Muni surveillance video captured Thephakaysone allegedly pulling out a .45-caliber weapon a couple of times then putting it away, and apparently no one onboard saw the firearm, Suhr said.

Police found the gun at the scene after Valdez was shot, he said.

Suhr said Thephakaysone apparently also pulled out the gun and threatened two other people prior to getting onto the Muni train, but no one called police to report either incident.

"That has to be a 911 call immediately," he said. "This could well have been averted."

Valdez's sister attended this afternoon's news conference but did not speak to reporters.

Suhr said the victim's family is asking for the public's help in raising money to transport him back to Southern California to be buried.

Valdez, who lived in San Francisco, grew up in Garden Grove in Southern California.

People interested in donating can visit www.giveforward.com/fundraiser/c253/justin-valdez-memorial-fund.

SFSU officials said Valdez was a sophomore at the school and had not yet declared a major.

School spokeswoman Ellen Griffin said Thephakaysone was admitted to SFSU as a transfer student in 2008 as a dietetics major and was a full-time student for a year, but has since been taking classes off-and-on, including this semester.

District attorney's office spokesman Alex Bastian said Thephakaysone is being charged with murder and is scheduled to be arraigned on Friday afternoon in San Francisco Superior Court.

 

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Red-Flag Warning In Place For Parts Of Bay Area Through Friday Afternoon

Fire danger remains high in parts of the Bay Area, with a red-flag warning in place until Friday afternoon, according to the National Weather Service.

The warning is in effect until 3 p.m. Friday for the North Bay, East Bay and the Contra Costa County hills because of gusty winds and low humidity, forecasters said.

Areas above 1,000 feet -- including Mt. Tamalpais in Marin County, Mount Diablo in Contra Costa County and Mount Saint Helena in Sonoma and Napa counties -- are also in the warning zone.

Residents of fire-prone areas are urged to be cautious in their activities to avoid igniting a blaze.

The dry weather combined with wind gusts reaching 35 mph at high elevations makes some areas particularly vulnerable to wildfires, weather officials said.

 

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Man Killed After Giants Game Was Son Of Dodgers Security Guard

A Los Angeles Dodgers fan who was stabbed to death after his team played the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on Wednesday night was the son of a Dodgers security guard, team officials said today.

Jonathan Denver, 24, was stabbed around 11:35 p.m. near Third and Harrison streets, four blocks from the ballpark where the Giants and Dodgers had played earlier in the night, with the Giants winning 6-4.

Denver, who was wearing Dodgers clothing, was apparently stabbed after an argument related to the teams' rivalry, San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr said today.

Suhr said this afternoon that one person is being arrested on suspicion of murder for the killing.

One other person was detained for questioning, and two others are still being sought, he said.

The Dodgers issued a statement this afternoon saying that Denver was the son of a team security guard.

"There is no rational explanation for this senseless act which resulted in Jonathan's death," team officials wrote. "The pain that this has caused his family and friends is unimaginable. Words are not enough to describe our sadness."

The Giants also released a statement about the killing.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time," the Giants' statement said. "While details are still emerging, we want to be clear that there is absolutely no place in our community for this type of senseless violence."

Chief Suhr said earlier that Denver was with his father, brother and two other people at the Giants-Dodgers game but had left with them in the eighth inning and gone to a nearby bar.

After exiting the bar, the group encountered a group of Giants fans and there was "a back-and-forth" about the teams' rivalry, Suhr said.

A minor fight erupted but was quickly broken up, the chief said.

Suhr said that what happened next remains unclear, but that one of the groups followed the other group and a second altercation ensued minutes later, during which Denver was stabbed.

He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where he died.

Suhr said two people were detained a short time later at Second and Howard streets and, during questioning by police, one "made incriminating statements" and will be arrested later today.

The name of the suspect was has not yet been released.

Suhr did not release any other information about the suspects except that they were in San Francisco in a vehicle registered in Lodi.

The death of Denver, who worked as a plumber's apprentice for North Coast Plumbing, Heating & Sheet Metal Inc. in Fort Bragg, is the latest violent incident to mar the Giants-Dodgers rivalry.

In 2011, Giants fan Bryan Stow was beaten after the team's season opener at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, and suffered severe brain injuries.

Two people have been charged in the beating and are awaiting trial.

The Giants held a fundraiser for Stow at Tuesday's game against the Dodgers and have two more planned at tonight's game and during their season finale against the San Diego Padres.

Suhr said police will continue sending undercover officers wearing Dodgers gear to tonight's game, along with other plainclothes officers, to ensure safety in and around the ballpark.

"There's no place at these games for violence," he said. "Nobody's life should be at stake."

 

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Public Warned Of People Impersonating Police In Phone Scams

San Francisco police are warning the public about a telephone scam in which people are impersonating police officers and demanding payments for overdue loan debts or traffic tickets.

Police say they never contact citizens for payment for outstanding citations or civil debt, and are asking people to report any phony requests.

In some cases, a caller identifies himself as a police officer acting on behalf of "Mark Rothman and Associates" and demands an interim payment on a loan debt, threatening that otherwise a bench warrant will be issued, police said.

The caller instructs the victim to purchase a $500 Green Dot MoneyPak or Vanilla gift card or similar cash-load card and to call back with the card information, according to police.

In the scam involving unpaid traffic tickets, callers make a similar threat regarding bench warrants if the money is not received through the cash-load card process.

Other similar scam attempts have occurred via email or a pre-recorded phone call, and some calls often show a legitimate Police Department number on the victim's caller ID, police said.

The cash-load cards have been the focus of scam artists nationwide, according to police.

San Francisco police spokesman Officer Gordon Shyy said there have been numerous victims of the scam and they want to warn the public, "especially since they're using the premise of being associated with the SFPD."

 

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Thursday Midday News Roundup

Dodgers Fan's Stabbing Preceded By Argument Over Team Rivalry

A Los Angeles Dodgers fan was stabbed to death after his team played the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on Wednesday night, and police said today it appears the killing was preceded by an argument over the teams' rivalry.

Jonathan Denver, 24, was stabbed around 11:35 p.m. near Third and Harrison streets, four blocks from the ballpark where the Giants and Dodgers had played earlier in the night, with the Giants winning 6-4.

Denver, who was wearing Dodgers clothing, was with his father, brother and two other people at the time.

They had left the game in the eighth inning and had gone to a nearby bar, San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr said at a news conference this morning.

After leaving the bar, the victim's group crossed paths with a group of Giants fans and "there was a back-and-forth about the Giants-Dodgers rivalry," Suhr said.

The argument deteriorated into a fight in which no one was seriously hurt, he said.

Suhr said what happened next remains unclear, but that one of the groups followed the other group and a second altercation ensued minutes later, during which Denver was stabbed.

He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where he died.

Two people were detained at Second and Howard streets and were being interviewed this morning, but have not been arrested, Suhr said.

He said police are still seeking two other people believed to be connected to the case.

Suhr did not release any information about the suspects except that they had come to San Francisco in a vehicle registered in Lodi.

Denver worked as a plumber's apprentice for North Coast Plumbing, Heating & Sheet Metal Inc. in Fort Bragg, according to an employee at the company.

Suhr said the Police Department has been assigning extra officers to this week's games between the Giants and Dodgers, two National League West division teams with a long and storied rivalry.

Denver's death is the latest violent incident to mar the rivalry.

In 2011, Giants fan Bryan Stow was beaten after the team's season opener at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, and suffered severe brain injuries.

The Giants held a fundraiser for Stow at Tuesday's game against the Dodgers and have two more planned at tonight's game and during their season finale against the San Diego Padres.

Suhr said police will continue sending undercover officers wearing Dodgers gear to tonight's game, along with other plainclothes officers, to ensure safety in and around the ballpark.

"There's no place at these games for violence," he said. "Nobody's life should be at stake."

Civic Center-Area Employees Participating In Evacuation Drill

Several buildings in San Francisco's Civic Center neighborhood were evacuated this morning as part of a drill to prepare for a large-scale disaster.

Occupants of City Hall, San Francisco Superior Court's Civic Center Courthouse, the University of California's Hastings College of the Law and the city's Department of Public Health and Public Utilities Commission offices were participating in the drill, which was scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m.

This is the fourth year that the evacuation exercise has taken place in the Civic Center area, UC Hastings and drill spokesman Alex A.G. Shapiro said.

"It's really so the neighborhood can learn to work better together and prepare in case anything occurs," Shapiro said. "It gives us an opportunity to reconnect and update on who our colleagues are in the different buildings."

He said that this year, drill organizers are focusing on assisting disabled people who may be most in need of help during a crisis.

Shapiro said the drill was expected to wrap up by 11:30 a.m.

Professor Who Died In Berkeley Apartment Fire To Be Remembered At USF Today

A memorial service will be held this afternoon for a University of San Francisco professor who died in a fire at his Berkeley home earlier this month.

The service for Andrew Goodwin, 56, will be held at 4:30 p.m. at Xavier Hall at the Fromm Institute on Parker Avenue near St. Ignatius Church.

A reception will follow.

The event is open to the public.

Friends and family have been asked to share and photographs and other mementos of the media studies professor, who had worked at USF for more than two decades.

Goodwin was killed in a two-alarm fire at an apartment building at 2431 Oregon St. in Berkeley on Sept. 10.

Fire crews pulled him from a third-floor unit and took him to a hospital, where he died.

He was known on campus for his course on the band Led Zeppelin and other classes about media theory, popular culture and communications.

According to the school, Goodwin received a Ph.D. in cultural studies from the Birmingham University Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies in the U.K. and was the author of the 1992 cultural theory book, "Dancing in the Distraction Factory: Music Television and Popular Culture."

He leaves behind an adult son and a sister who lives in England.

Oakland Airport Terminal Loses Power In Morning Outage

Oakland International Airport's Terminal 1 lost power this morning, but the outage has not caused any flight delays, an airport spokeswoman said.

Power went out in the terminal around 10 a.m., causing airport officials to brace for possible delays to flights departing from that terminal, spokeswoman Kim Domerofski said.

However, no flights have been delayed and no delays are expected.

The terminal was back up and running on generator power a short time after the outage began, Domerofski said.

She said around 11:15 a.m. that power was expected to be restored shortly.

Former High School Football Star Charged As Adult For Casual Carpool Robberies

A 22-year-old man and a teenager who was a former high school football star have been charged for allegedly robbing a line of casual carpool riders near the Rockridge BART station on Monday.

Alameda County prosecutors on Wednesday charged Dajon Laron Ford, 17, as an adult in the case, along with 22-year-old Delante Marsean Johnson.

Both have been charged with 12 counts of robbery and weapons enhancements, district attorney's office spokeswoman Teresa Drenick said.

Johnson faces two additional felony counts of carrying a loaded firearm and carrying a concealed firearm, she said.

Ford, who will turn 18 next month, played for several years on the football team for McClymonds High School in West Oakland, and was named to multiple all-star teams, according to online records.

Police said Johnson and Ford robbed commuters at gunpoint around 9 a.m. Monday as the victims waited near the intersection of Hudson Street and Claremont Avenue in the casual carpool pickup line for rides to San Francisco.

The pair made off with victims' bags and electronics, according to police.

Witness accounts led investigators to Johnson, Ford and a third suspect, who was later released.

Officers seized three guns during searches of the suspects' homes, according to police.

Johnson is being held at the Santa Rita Jail in Dublin, and Ford is in custody at the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center in San Leandro.

Both are being held on $1.7 million bail, according to jail records.

The suspects were scheduled to appear in court in Oakland for plea hearings this morning.

Berkeley Chef Alice Waters And Other Chefs Launch Petition Seeking Fracking Moratorium

Berkeley chef Alice Waters was joined by dozens of other chefs and food experts on Wednesday in the launch of a petition asking Gov. Jerry Brown to declare a moratorium on fracking in California.

Potential future fracking is "putting California's scarce and precious water resources and most prized farmland at serious risk," the organic food pioneer said in a letter inviting fellow chefs to sign.

Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is the practice of directing large high-pressure streams of water, sand and chemicals at underground rock in order to fracture the rock and release oil and natural gas.

The petition contends the practice hurts farmers and agriculture by depleting water supplies, increasing water costs and polluting groundwater.

By the end of the day today, 92 chefs, restaurant owners, winemakers and authors had signed the petition, according to Food & Water Watch spokeswoman Anna Ghosh.

Signers thus far include chef and author Joyce Goldstein of San Francisco and chefs Annie Somerville of Greens in San Francisco, Robert Klein of Oliveto in Oakland and Bruce Hill of Picco in Larkspur.

The environmental watch group is helping Waters, the founder of the Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley, and Panisse executive chef Jerome Waag collect signatures and increase chefs' awareness of fracking issues.

The petition asks Brown to declare a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing until the state conducts a comprehensive study of its impacts on California water, air and soil.

The chefs' concerns center on possible fracking in the Monterey Shale Formation, a huge tract of 1,750 square miles in the Central Valley and Southern California that has been estimated to contain 15 billion barrels of shale oil.

The petition follows two recent developments on the part of the state and federal governments regarding fracking.

Last week, Brown signed a law that regulates fracking on private and public land in the state by requiring oil companies to obtain a permit from a state agency for hydraulic fracturing, notify neighbors and disclose the chemicals that will be used.

In the federal realm, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management announced this summer that it will conduct a full environmental impact study of the effects of oil and gas development, including fracking, on federal land in Central California that could be leased to energy companies.

Public Invited To Test-Drive Electric Vehicles At Santana Row Today In San Jose 

"EV Week" continues today at San Jose's Santana Row, where Mayor Chuck Reed and members of the City Council will tout the value of driving all-electric cars.

At the event, which takes place from noon to 7 p.m., members of the public are invited to test-drive one of 11 different plug-in cars around Santana Row's Chess Plaza, said Deborah Schneider, spokeswoman for the nonprofit Charge Across Town.

The cars available for test-driving include the Tesla Model S, Toyota Prius Plug-in, Honda Fit EV, Ford Fusion C-Max Energi and GM Chevy Volt, Schneider said.

There will also be interactive exhibits from Tesla, Honda, Toyota, Ford, Nissan, Zipcar, City CarShare, SunPower and other companies.

At a separate EV Week event held Wednesday in Palo Alto, about 300 test drives were done, according to Maureen Blanc, director of San Francisco-based Charge Across Town, which is sponsoring the event.

The nonprofit was formed to educate the public about the latest developments in all-electric vehicles and get people to give the cars a try, Blanc said.

"Our goal is to educate about what's available," Blanc said. "The only way to do that is to get in and drive them."

So far, there have been about 1,000 test drives of the plug-in vehicles during EV Week events in San Francisco and Palo Alto, Blanc said.

Another goal of the event is to counter some of the concerns people tend to have about electric vehicles, such as how far they can drive on a charge, Blanc said.

Many of the cars can go from 75 to 100 miles on a single, overnight charge while the car is parked in the owner's garage at home, Blanc said.

More test drives will be offered Friday at Santana Row.

Additional information on EV Week is available on Charge Across Town's website at www.chargeacrosstown.com/ev-week-silicon-valley/.

Santa Clara High School Math Teacher Charged With Statutory Rape

A Santa Clara High School math teacher has been charged with statutory rape for allegedly having sex with a female student, and will be arraigned today in San Jose, according to the district attorney's office.

Hugo Cortes Guzman, 32, will face four felony charges of unlawful sex with a minor, Santa Clara County Supervising Deputy District Attorney Stacey Capps said.

The victim is a 17-year-old girl who had been a student in one of Guzman's classes, Capps said.

Guzman allegedly engaged in sexual activity with the girl off of the school campus between September 2012 and this month, Capps said.

Guzman was still teaching at Santa Clara High School up until the day of his arrest on Tuesday, Capps said.

According to the school's website, he taught algebra and AP statistics.

He will be arraigned at about 1:30 p.m. today, Capps said.

Santa Clara police arrested Guzman on Tuesday after investigators learned of the alleged sexual relationship, Santa Clara police Lt. Kurt Clarke said.

Santa Cruz Police Arrest Man Suspected Of Stalking High School Girls

A 31-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of stalking and photographing female students near Santa Cruz high schools, police said.

Detectives arrested Santa Cruz resident Joshua Paul James on Tuesday after two student athletes at Santa Cruz High School told them that a suspicious person had followed them in a car as they ran through the neighborhood as part of their training on Monday, Santa Cruz police said.

On Tuesday, detectives were following up on the previous day's report when more suspicious activity was reported near Pacific Collegiate School on Swift Street, according to police.

A male suspect appeared to be photographing or filming female students on or near school grounds, police said.

Descriptions of the suspect in both incidents were similar, police said.

Detectives looked for the suspect's vehicle and found his car parked in a lot near Front and Laurel streets.

James got into the car and officers initiated a vehicle stop, police said.

He was interviewed and then arrested for possessing obscene matter depicting children, annoying children and stalking.

Police allege that James was filming and photographing the teen girls, who are between the ages of 13 and 15, for the purpose of sexual gratification.

Detectives served a search warrant at James' home in the 300 block of Buena Vista Avenue and searched his car, a white 2007 Toyota Yaris.

Detectives seized photography equipment, storage cards and computer equipment.

Police said they are in the process of going the through the images and hard drives to identify any additional victims.

James was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail and was being held on $250,000 bail.

Marin County Parks Worker Saves Richmond Man From Drowing At McNears Beach In San Rafael

A Marin County Parks employee helped save an East Bay man from drowning at McNears Beach Park on Wednesday evening, a San Rafael fire captain said.

A passerby saw a man struggling in the water in the San Pablo Bay about 500 feet from the pier and called 911 around 6:30 p.m., fire Capt. Ryan Goodwin said this morning.

Marin County Parks seasonal maintenance worker Louis Hernandez was working at the park when heard a radio dispatch about a possible drowning, Goodwin said.

When Goodwin, a paramedic and a fire engineer arrived about four minutes later, Hernandez had already thrown a ring buoy tied to a rope to the 29-year-old Richmond man and was pulling him to shore, Goodwin said.

The fire department crew helped Hernandez get the man out of the water, and an ambulance took him to Marin General Hospital, Goodwin said.

Goodwin said the victim had been standing on the pier when he dropped his keys in the water.

"The passerby saw him jump in, struggle and go underwater a couple times," Goodwin said.

The victim was suffering from hypothermia, and Goodwin said he asked emergency responders to warm up the back of the ambulance for him.

"We helped bring him up the embankment and took off his clothes," Goodwin said, adding that the man was "extremely tired, lethargic and cold."

"When he got to the hospital, his core temperature was 95 degrees. He was pretty hypothermic," Goodwin said.

He said he has since been told that the man is doing well.

Marin County Parks Chief Park Ranger Rob Ruiz said Hernandez has worked as a general park maintenance worker on and off for six years.

Goodwin said he would like San Rafael and Marin County government officials to hold a ceremony recognizing Hernandez's heroism.

10 Displaced By Fire That Destroyed East Santa Rosa Apartment

The Santa Rosa Fire Department is investigating what caused a fire that destroyed an apartment and displaced 10 people on Wednesday afternoon.

The fire was reported at 3:40 p.m. at 880 Yulupa Ave. in east Santa Rosa, Battalion Chief Mark Basque said.

One of the four apartments in the single-story building was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived three minutes later, Basque said.

Eighteen firefighters controlled the fire in 15 minutes, but the blaze destroyed the apartment where it started and caused moderate heat and smoke damage to units on either side of it, Basque said.

The occupants of the apartment that caught fire escaped before fire crews arrived.

Firefighters revived a cat that was overcome by smoke in one of the adjacent apartments, Basque said.

Ten people from four families were displaced by the fire, which caused an estimated $50,000 in damage, Basque said.

 

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Dodgers Fan's Stabbing Preceded By Argument Over Team Rivalry

A Los Angeles Dodgers fan was stabbed to death after his team played the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on Wednesday night, and police said today it appears the killing was preceded by an argument over the teams' rivalry.

Jonathan Denver, 24, was stabbed around 11:35 p.m. near Third and Harrison streets, four blocks from the ballpark where the Giants and Dodgers had played earlier in the night, with the Giants winning 6-4.

Denver, who was wearing Dodgers clothing, was with his father, brother and two other people at the time.

They had left the game in the eighth inning and had gone to a nearby bar, San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr said at a news conference this morning.

After leaving the bar, the victim's group crossed paths with a group of Giants fans and "there was a back-and-forth about the Giants-Dodgers rivalry," Suhr said.

The argument deteriorated into a fight in which no one was seriously hurt, he said.

Suhr said what happened next remains unclear, but that one of the groups followed the other group and a second altercation ensued minutes later, during which Denver was stabbed.

He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where he died.

Two people were detained at Second and Howard streets and were being interviewed this morning, but have not been arrested, Suhr said.

He said police are still seeking two other people believed to be connected to the case.

Suhr did not release any information about the suspects except that they had come to San Francisco in a vehicle registered in Lodi.

Denver worked as a plumber's apprentice for North Coast Plumbing, Heating & Sheet Metal Inc. in Fort Bragg, according to an employee at the company.

Suhr said the Police Department has been assigning extra officers to this week's games between the Giants and Dodgers, two National League West division teams with a long and storied rivalry.

Denver's death is the latest violent incident to mar the rivalry.

In 2011, Giants fan Bryan Stow was beaten after the team's season opener at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, and suffered severe brain injuries.

The Giants held a fundraiser for Stow at Tuesday's game against the Dodgers and have two more planned at tonight's game and during their season finale against the San Diego Padres.

Suhr said police will continue sending undercover officers wearing Dodgers gear to tonight's game, along with other plainclothes officers, to ensure safety in and around the ballpark.

"There's no place at these games for violence," he said. "Nobody's life should be at stake."

 

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     We Built a Stronger SF Economy on Smart Government Investments

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Professor Who Died In Berkeley Apartment Fire To Be Remembered At USF Today

A memorial service will be held this afternoon for a University of San Francisco professor who died in a fire at his Berkeley home earlier this month.

The service for Andrew Goodwin, 56, will be held at 4:30 p.m. at Xavier Hall at the Fromm Institute on Parker Avenue near St. Ignatius Church.

A reception will follow.

The event is open to the public.

Friends and family have been asked to share and photographs and other mementos of the media studies professor, who had worked at USF for more than two decades.

Goodwin was killed in a two-alarm fire at an apartment building at 2431 Oregon St. in Berkeley on Sept. 10.

Fire crews pulled him from a third-floor unit and took him to a hospital, where he died.

He was known on campus for his course on the band Led Zeppelin and other classes about media theory, popular culture and communications.

According to the school, Goodwin received a Ph.D. in cultural studies from the Birmingham University Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies in the U.K. and was the author of the 1992 cultural theory book, "Dancing in the Distraction Factory: Music Television and Popular Culture."

He leaves behind an adult son and a sister who lives in England.

 

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Civic Center-Area Employees Participating In Evacuation Drill

Several buildings in San Francisco's Civic Center neighborhood are being evacuated this morning as part of a drill to prepare for a large-scale disaster.

Occupants of City Hall, San Francisco Superior Court's Civic Center Courthouse, the University of California's Hastings College of the Law and the city's Department of Public Health and Public Utilities Commission offices are participating in the drill, which was scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m.

This is the fourth year that the evacuation exercise has taken place in the Civic Center area, UC Hastings and drill spokesman Alex A.G. Shapiro said.

"It's really so the neighborhood can learn to work better together and prepare in case anything occurs," Shapiro said. "It gives us an opportunity to reconnect and update on who our colleagues are in the different buildings."

He said that this year, drill organizers are focusing on assisting disabled people who may be most in need of help during a crisis.

No streets are being closed, but there may be some traffic delays, organizers said.

Shapiro said the drill is expected to wrap up by 11:30 a.m.

 

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Check out some of our most popular blogs:

     We Built a Stronger SF Economy on Smart Government Investments

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Paid for by Phil Ting for Assembly 2012. FPPC ID# 1343137