BART Officials Still Unsure Of Cause Of Computer Glitch
It could take weeks to determine what caused a computer glitch that brought BART service to a halt on Monday evening, a BART spokesman said Tuesday.
BART service was back to normal Tuesday morning after the problem forced BART to stop trains in service and let passengers off.
BART spokesman Linton Johnson explained Tuesday afternoon that the problem occurred when a network router failed. Normally when that happens, the router is supposed to communicate the problem to another router, but for some reason that did not happen Monday, he said.
As a result, information was not getting to BART's Operations Control Center, and personnel at the center were unable to monitor trains.
It is still unclear what caused the problem, which began shortly after 7:30 p.m. The system was rebooted at 9:50 p.m., and service was fully restored around 11:15 p.m.
It took a while to address the problem because computer engineers had gone home for the day, Johnson said. Now, he said, a staff member will be on duty to monitor the data intake during all of BART's operating hours until the cause has been pinpointed.
"We need to get to the root cause," Johnson said.
He said Monday evening was "miserable" for many BART riders and called it an "embarrassing moment" for BART.
"We can't apologize enough," he said.
Johnson said that although the glitch created a major inconvenience, it did not put BART riders in any danger.
"We have a lot of redundancies in place so that when things fail, they fail safely," he said.
Oakland Deputy Police Chief Confident Arrests Will Be Made In Connection With Drive-By Shooting
Oakland Deputy Police Chief Eric Breshears said Tuesday that he is confident arrests will be made soon in a drive-by shooting that killed a 3-year-old boy in East Oakland on Monday.
"We have investigative leads and expect that we will have closure to this," Breshears said.
He was speaking to reporters at a briefing outside a Little Caesars pizza restaurant at 6447 International Blvd. near where the toddler was shot at about 1:10 p.m. on Monday.
"We're hoping that having the crime being quickly solved will bring some closure to the family, although it won't compensate for losing the boy," Breshears said.
Police said they believe the targets of the shooting were two men who had no connection to the young boy and his family. The men were struck by bullets but survived.
The 3-year-old was pronounced dead at Children's Hospital Oakland shortly after the shooting.
Oakland police have not yet released the boy's name, but according to a T-shirt with his photo that is displayed at a memorial for him on the sidewalk near where the shooting happened, his name is Carlos Fernandez Nava.
The T-shirt says, "Rest in God's Hands, Precious Angel" and "Gone Too Soon."
Mourners have dropped off stuffed animals, candles, and a large baby bottle. There is also a large poster on which community members have written condolence messages.
Among the messages are, "May you rest in peace Little Guy" and "God bless you Little Baby Boy."
Woman Arrested In Connection With Santa Cruz Hit-And-Run
A 33-year-old Soquel woman was arrested Tuesday in connection with a fatal hit-and-run collision in Santa Cruz two months ago, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Sundara Wertz was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and hit-and-run, the CHP said.
She is suspected of driving a white 1999 Infiniti QX4 that struck and killed Noel Hamilton, 31, as he was riding his bicycle on June 27, according to the CHP.
At about 10:10 p.m. that evening, Wertz's Infiniti was going south on Soquel-San Jose Road when it allegedly collided with Hamilton, who was also traveling south on his bike.
Hamilton, a Soquel resident, was pronounced dead on the road.
Wertz initially fled the scene and then returned to provide a statement to CHP officers.
She surrendered to officers at about 4 p.m. at Santa Cruz County Jail following a CHP investigation that found she was responsible for the crash.
SOMA Hit-And-Run Victim Upgraded From Critical To Serious Condition
A 9-year-old boy who was injured during a hit-and-run in San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood Thursday has been upgraded from critical to serious condition, a San Francisco General Hospital spokeswoman said.
Ryan White was visiting from Philadelphia and had recently left the evening baseball game between the San Francisco Giants and the Philadelphia Phillies when he was struck by a white pickup truck while crossing Mission Street at around 10:30 p.m.
White was walking ahead of a family member when he was struck by the truck, which was turning left onto Mission Street. The truck had been driving north on New Montgomery Street, which is a one-way southbound street, police said.
Hayward resident Andrew Vargas, 21, was stopped in Hayward at around 11:30 p.m. when local police spotted his truck.
He was booked into jail on suspicion of felony hit-and-run and driving under the influence in connection with the incident, police Lt. Troy Dangerfield said.
White suffered a traumatic brain injury, which is slowly improving, as well as fractures to his pelvis, left leg and ankle, and a laceration to his liver, according to a statement that his family released Tuesday.
"Ryan has a long road ahead of him, but he is young and strong and we expect steady improvement especially when he can engage in rehabilitation full time," the statement read.
The family also expressed their gratitude for the outpouring of support they have received from the city's police and fire departments, the mayor, and the Giants and Phillies organizations.
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee visited the boy and his family Tuesday at the hospital. "I will continue to keep Ryan and his family in my prayers as he recovers," he said in a statement.
Representatives from both the Phillies and the Giants went to the hospital to visit Ryan and his family, and Giants players sent Ryan and his 11-year-old brother Kevin signed baseball bats and jerseys, a team spokeswoman said.
San Jose Family Learn Of Death Of Navy SEAL Kevin Houston
Navy SEAL Kevin Houston's family in San Jose has been left heartbroken by news that he was killed along with 37 others when his helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan Saturday.
Houston, 36, lived in San Jose until he was 9 years old and still visited family there frequently. He moved to Cape Cod, Mass., when his parents divorced when he was a child.
Houston's aunt, Catherine Mann, of San Jose, said she is making preparations to travel to Houston's home in Virginia so she can be with his family for upcoming services.
Houston's primary home was in Virginia with his wife, Meiling, and their three children, a 2-year-old boy, an 11-year-old girl, and 17-year-old son who just graduated from high school and is preparing to go to college.
Mann said that Houston's duties as a Navy SEAL made him travel frequently, and he had completed tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, but that when he was home he was a loving husband and father.
"I could tell when I was around them that he was a good husband and father," Mann said.
Mann said that Houston knew he wanted to be a SEAL when he was only 8 or 9 years old. She speculated that might be because of his uncle, who was in the Navy.
Living on Cape Cod, Houston swam frequently, she said, and would emerge from the water with a knife between his teeth. "What are you doing?" his family would ask him, and he would respond, "I'm training."
"That's a big deal, to know what he wanted to do as a kid and aspire to do it, and to be really good at it," Mann said.
She said that in his time off, he loved riding motorcycles, and that he had a fun-loving personality but that he took his work very seriously.
"He loved what he was doing, and did it well obviously because he rose in the ranks so quickly," she said.
Man Convicted Of Trying To Kill Wife With Hammer In 2008
A man was convicted Tuesday of trying to kill his estranged wife with a hammer in 2008 at her home near San Francisco's Twin Peaks.
Steve Acosta, 59, faced 22 separate charges in the case, including attempted murder, torture, mayhem, stalking, making criminal threats, burglary and violating a restraining order.
His estranged wife, Kimberly Celoni, was attacked with a hammer on April 16, 2008, at her home on Glenview Drive, where Acosta had also repeatedly threatened and vandalized her property in the days leading up to the attack, prosecutors said.
Celoni was left with permanent cognitive and physical injuries from the attack.
A San Francisco Superior Court jury found Acosta guilty of 20 of the 22 counts, acquitting him of two of the criminal threats charges.
Acosta also had two prior convictions for assault in 1974 and 1986, and could face a life sentence under the state's three strikes law.
His defense attorney, Floyd Andrews, said outside of court that Acosta was a recovering addict who began using drugs again after having back surgery and getting painkillers.
He and Celoni had been married for 11 years, but after using drugs again, Acosta began accusing her of having affairs, even one with a man who had been dead for years, Andrews said.
He said the jury's verdict was "not unexpected" since he had acknowledged Acosta was guilty of the attack during the trial.
Acosta will return to court today for a trial to affirm his two previous convictions and likely to set a date for sentencing.
Charges Filed Against Woman Who Enlisted Two Boys' Help In Attempted Murder
Prosecutors filed charges Monday against a 36-year-old Vallejo woman who allegedly enlisted two teenage boys to help her try to kill her ex-boyfriend's wife twice in San Pablo in May, Contra Costa County Deputy District Attorney Kate DeFerrari said Tuesday.
Darlene McDade has been charged with conspiracy, two counts of attempted murder, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, stalking in violation of a restraining order, first-degree residential burglary and enhancements for using a gun and causing great bodily injury, DeFerrari said.
The first attack came on May 4 after McDade allegedly told two teenage boys to meet her in San Pablo and bring their guns, DeFerrari said.
According to San Pablo police Sgt. Scott Cook, the boys were 15- and 16-year-old Vallejo residents who McDade allegedly offered to compensate for carrying out the shootings.
When she met up with the boys, McDade allegedly drove them to a gated community in San Pablo where her ex-boyfriend lived with his 31-year-old wife. The group allegedly waited at the gate until the victim came home and then followed her inside, DeFerrari said.
According to Cook, the victim told police that a male suspect threatened her and fired one shot from a shotgun as she fled into her home, striking her in the leg.
The second attack came nine days later, on May 13, as the victim was driving on Rumrill Boulevard near the border between San Pablo and Richmond, DeFerrari said.
The victim immediately reported both incidents to the police.
McDade quickly became a suspect because she had previously violated a restraining order her ex-boyfriend had filed against her and was involved in a bitter custody battle with him over their 2-year-old daughter, Cook said.
According to Cook, the 15-year-old boy had been arrested by Vallejo police about a month after the shootings and found to be in possession of a shotgun.
During a search of McDade's residence, police allegedly found property belonging to McDade's ex-boyfriend that had been taken in a residential burglary earlier this year, Cook said.
The 15-year-old boy has been charged in juvenile court with assault with a deadly weapon, but the other boy has been released without charges.
McDade remained in county jail Tuesday afternoon on $2.4 million bail.
San Mateo County Takes Further Steps Toward Bicycle Share Program
San Mateo County took another step Tuesday morning toward implementing a bicycle share program that will connect Caltrain commuters to bike kiosks at stations in five cities.
The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors Tuesday voted to join a partnership of local agencies participating in the Regional Bicycle Share Pilot Project, which will be administered by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.
The program aims to put up to 1,000 bikes in more than 100 kiosks along Caltrain's Peninsula corridor, air district spokesman Aaron Richardson said.
"The idea is that one of the ways these bikes could be most valuable is as commute extenders," Richardson said.
Caltrain commuters could essentially deboard Caltrain, check out a bicycle from one of the kiosks and ride to work or a final destination, where the bike could be left in another nearby kiosk, Richardson said.
The pilot program will establish bike kiosks in San Francisco, Redwood City, Mountain View, Palo Alto and San Jose.
Among the agencies that have agreed to take part in the pilot program are the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, the San Mateo County Transportation District, the city of Redwood City and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority.
By joining the partnership, San Mateo County has agreed to provide staff to promote the program locally and designate sites on county-owned properties as possible locations for bike kiosks.
"Bike sharing is an innovative way to improve our community's health and air quality by replacing short car trips with zero-emission bikes," Air District executive director Jack Broadbent said in a statement.
The pilot program is being funded by $4.29 million in grant funds awarded to the air district by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, Richardson said.
The air district hopes to have the pilot program up and running in the summer of 2012, Richardson said.
Man Convicted Of Running Over Pedestrian
A man convicted of intentionally running down and killing a pedestrian in San Francisco's Mission District in 2007 was sentenced Tuesday to 14 years in state prison.
Hamilton Diaz, 30, struck Randal Gross, 24, with his red Toyota Tercel near the intersection of 16th and Valencia streets early the morning of March 20, 2007.
Diaz and Gross had gotten into an argument, after which Gross allegedly smashed Diaz's windshield and walked away north on Valencia Street, prosecutors said.
Diaz drove onto the sidewalk and allegedly struck Gross from behind with his car, then sped off. Gross died at the scene, and Diaz was arrested a short distance away after ditching his car and fleeing on foot.
He was charged with murder and hit-and-run, but on June 23, a San Francisco Superior Court jury convicted him of a lesser charge, voluntary manslaughter, with a special allegation of the use of a deadly weapon: the car used to fatally strike Gross.
Gross' mother Janet Miley spoke at Diaz's sentencing hearing Tuesday, telling him, "You ended my family's lineage," because her only other child has cerebral palsy and other health issues.
Miley criticized the justice system for not deporting Diaz, an undocumented immigrant, after he was released from custody following a prior conviction on a 2006 arson charge. The incident in the Mission District happened seven months after his release.
Miley and other family friends who spoke at the hearing asked for Diaz to be sentenced to the maximum prison term allowable.
His defense attorney, Mark Goldrosen, argued for a shorter term of eight years, saying Diaz had been provoked into an "explosion of violence that happened in an instant."
After arguments from both sides, Judge Jerome Benson decided on the longer term of 14 years, which included 11 years for the manslaughter charge, one for use of the deadly weapon, one for hit-and-run, and one for a prior conviction on a 2006 arson charge.
San Francisco Bay Area Weather Forecast
Mostly cloudy weather is expected in the Bay Area this morning with patchy fog before becoming mostly sunny. Highs in the 50s to upper 60s are anticipated.
Tonight is expected to be partly cloudy becoming mostly cloudy with patches of fog after midnight. Lows in the lower 50s are expected.
Forecasters predict mostly cloudy skies Thursday with patchy fog in the morning becoming mostly sunny. Highs in the 50s to upper 60s are anticipated.
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