SF Pride 2011 was "Best Pride Ever" on Sunday
Lesbians, gays, elected officials, celebrities and visitors from around the world gathered Sunday in downtown San Francisco for the 41st Pride Parade and Celebration.
Kicking off the parade at 10:30 a.m. in the Embarcadero and making its way down Market Street to the Civic Center, about 200 groups waved, threw plastic necklaces and cheered at hundreds of thousands of people gathered along the route.
A lesbian group on motorcycles known as "Dykes on Bikes" led the parade, followed by many bicyclists, part of an AIDS ride group.
LGBTQ-friendly police, deputies and firefighters honked horns and flashed their lights for the brightly colored and creatively dressed crowd.
San Franciscan Caitlin Roach decided "this is going to be the best Pride ever" and noticed that there was "a lot of love" throughout the streets.
"My favorite thing about Pride is how unbelievably gay it is," said the 23-year-old with her girlfriend standing along the parade route.
Local celebrities and officials supporting the gay community rode down Market Street including San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, former San Francisco Supervisors Bevan Dufty and Fiona Ma and Assemblyman Tom Ammiano.
The parade's celebrity grand marshals -- actress Olympia Dukakis, transgender activist Chaz Bono and television show "Top Chef: Just Desserts" winner Yigit Pura -- garnered cheers and waves.
As COLAGE, PFLAG and other groups supporting same-sex families marched the streets with many strollers in tow, El Cerrito resident Joseph Tinner, 45, commented on the political vibe at this year's Pride celebration. "There's a lot on the plate," he said. "This Pride is a little more emotional." Nearby same-sex marriage supporters held foam fingers that said, "Go marriage equality!"
For Nyisha Carson, Pride 2011 was her first. She came down from Sacramento to see how San Francisco celebrated the gay community, sporting a handmade feather-decorated umbrella. "So far I like it. There are lots of people, lots of different people," she said about the parade and nearby Civic Center festival. "Everybody is friendly."
Police said Pride events have not been violent or out of control as of Sunday afternoon.
Downtown San Francisco BART stations along the parade route and at Civic Center have not had any problems, according to BART officials.
6 People Die in Accident with Amtrak Train, Semi Tractor-Trailer
Six people have been confirmed dead in an accident involving an Emeryville-bound Amtrak train and a semi tractor-trailer, the Churchill County Sheriff's Office said Saturday night.
The deaths include a conductor on the California Zephyr train, the driver of the truck that struck the train Friday, and at least some passengers, according to Amtrak officials.
No names of the victims are being released yet, according to the Churchill County Sheriff's Office.
The crash occurred around 11:20 a.m. Friday in a rural area east of Reno, Nev., when the truck struck the train at a crossing.
The truck driver apparently tried to brake before striking the train, leaving brake marks in the roadway, said Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Dan Lopez.
A witness said signals and lights at the railroad crossing were working prior to the crash.
Most passengers have now continued their travel west on chartered motor coaches obtained by Amtrak or chosen to make their own arrangements, Amtrak said.
The train, which originated in Chicago, was carrying approximately 204 passengers and 14 crew members at the time of the accident.
Amtrak customer service employees and crew supervisors are working to assist customers and employees.
Anyone with questions about friends or family aboard the train can call (800) 523-9101.
"We are saddened by any injury or loss of life and appreciate the emergency response by local and state agencies," Amtrak President and CEO Joseph Boardman said in a prepared statement.
SF Police Arrest 2 Teens after Saturday Shooting, 4 Victims in Hospital
San Francisco police arrested two teenagers after a Saturday evening shooting near Seventh and Market streets that sent five victims, including four bystanders, to the hospital, a police lieutenant said.
The 18-year-old and 16-year-old suspects have been arrested on suspicion of several felonies including assault with a deadly weapon and other gang-related offenses, Lt. Troy Dangerfield said.
The two suspects allegedly opened fire in the 1000 block of Market Street at about 6:15 p.m., Dangerfield said. Two people were shot in the leg and one was shot in the buttocks, while two other victims were shot in the torso, he said.
None of the injuries were life threatening and all victims are being treated at San Francisco General Hospital, Dangerfield said. Four of the five injured were bystanders, he said.
The unintended victims were a 17-year-old boy from El Cerrito, a 22-year-old man from Santa Cruz, a 45-year-old man visiting from England, and a 74-year-old man from San Francisco. Information about the intended victim and the names of the two suspects are not being released by police.
Witnesses said they saw two groups of people involved in some type of fight before the shooting, Dangerfield said.
The case is being investigated by the San Francisco Police Department's Gang Task Force, he said.
The shooting was not related to the San Francisco Pride Celebration taking place at nearby Civic Center, Dangerfield said.
100-Year-Old Woman Killed by Car Crash into SJ Convalescent Home
A 100-year-old woman has died from injuries suffered when a woman crashed her car into a San Jose convalescent home on Saturday morning.
Suzanne Infante was the second resident to die as a result of the crash at Amberwood Gardens in the 1600 block of Peterson Avenue, according to the Santa Clara County medical examiner's office.
Esther Bocanegra, 88, died Saturday from her injuries. Infante, Bocanegra and 10 or 12 other residents were in a common room at the home when a 90-year-old visitor parking her car hit the gas pedal instead of the brakes, and crashed through a large window, according to San Jose police Sgt. Jason Dwyer.
Seven people were injured and taken to hospitals, Dwyer said. The crash remains under investigation.
2.4-Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Contra Costa County
A 2.4-magnitude earthquake struck Contra Costa County on Sunday morning, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
The quake had a depth of 6.3 miles, according to the USGS.
The earthquake was recorded in an area two miles east of San Ramon and 3 miles north of Dublin at 7:48 a.m.
NOPA 2-Alarm Fire Burns 3-Story Building
A fire that burned a three-story building in San Francisco's North of Panhandle, or Nopa, neighborhood reached a second alarm Saturday afternoon, according to a fire captain.
More than sixty firefighters responded to the 1300 block of Hayes Street when the first alarm went off at 5:24 p.m. for an apartment fire.
A second alarm was called at 5:30 p.m. The fire was under control by 6 p.m., according to the fire department.
Six adults were displaced from four units on two floors of the building, according to the fire department.
The captain said there was considerable damage to the rear of the building and moderate damage in the front.
The total property damage was estimated to be $250,000. No residents or firefighters were injured and the fire did not affect any nearby buildings, he said.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Tubing Accident on Sonoma County Lake Injures 7-Year-Old Boy
A tubing accident on a lake in Sonoma County severely injured a 7-year-old boy on Saturday, the sheriff's office reported.
A 7-year-old San Francisco boy, his father and other people were tubing on Lake Sonoma when the boat's towline that was pulling the child on a tube was caught on a different boat's propeller. The moving propeller pulled the towline and the child toward the boat.
The propellers hit the boy's legs, severely cutting them, which led to significant bleeding, according to Sgt. Ed Hoener. Due to the boy's severe injuries and the remote location in a restricted area of the lake, a sheriff's helicopter was brought in. The boy was treated where the helicopter landed on the lake and then transported to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, Hoener said.
At the hospital the boy was sent to the trauma unit to undergo surgery. Further details concerning the accident are under investigation, according to the sheriff's office.
Decomposed Body Found in Alameda Creek
A man's decomposed body was found Saturday afternoon in a creek in Fremont, a deputy coroner said.
A passerby spotted the body in Alameda Creek near Interstate Highway 880 at around 1:30 p.m., according to the Alameda County coroner's bureau.
The man has not been identified, nor has it been determined how he died.
Martinez Mother Runs Over 4-Year-Old Son
A 4-year-old boy was critically injured Saturday morning when his mother drove over him in the driveway of their Martinez home, police said.
Officers and paramedics responded to a call from a woman who said she ran over her child in the 200 block Vista Way at about 10:05 a.m., according to Martinez police.
The boy, whose injuries were considered life threatening, was still under the vehicle when ifted the boy to Children's Hospital of Oakland, where he underwent extensive surgery.
A preliminary investigation revealed the mother had pulled her car on to the street to provide a battery jump to a commercial vehicle, police said.
When she pulled back into the driveway, she did not notice that her son had moved from the front yard into the path of her car.
Drugs or alcohol were not a factor in the collision, police said.
As of Sunday morning, the boy was on life support in an intensive care unit of the hospital, police said.
Santa Rosa Man Arrested on Suspicion of Murder After Freeway Chase, Manhunt, Attempted Carjacking
A Santa Rosa man was arrested Saturday morning on suspicion of murder following a freeway pursuit and manhunt that ended with an attempted carjacking in Marin County.
The chase began around 2:08 a.m. when police were called to Cumberland Street and Homestead Lane on a report of a disturbance.
Santa Rosa resident Oscar Valencia, 23, was found lying dead in the street with a gunshot wound to his head, Santa Rosa police Sgt. Rainer Navarro said. Officers noticed a white van driven by a suspect leaving the scene.
By 2:16 a.m., California Highway Patrol officers had spotted a vehicle matching the description driving south on U.S. Highway 101 near Pepper Road, Navarro said.
Attempts to pull the vehicle over failed and the pursuit continued from Petaluma south into Marin County, where officers used a spike strip to stop the van, he said.
The driver, however, fled the van on foot and ran across the freeway into a field near St. Vincent Drive in San Rafael.
After a search using dogs and helicopters, a man matching the suspect's description was seen around 6:30 a.m. running across the freeway and attempting to stop cars, Navarro said.
The suspect was seen allegedly trying to force his way into a vehicle that had stopped to avoid hitting him, but police were able to take him into custody before he gained entry into any vehicles, he said.
Latroy Clinton, Sr., 39, was arrested and booked into Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of murder, Navarro said.
Santa Rosa police are investigating Valencia's murder, while the California Highway Patrol is investigating the vehicle pursuit. CHP officers found a firearm believed to be related to the shooting about 1400 feet north of the Marinwood overcrossing on U.S. 101, he said.
The Marin County Sheriff's Office is also investigating a carjacking involving Clinton. Anyone with information about Valencia's murder is asked to call the Santa Rosa Police Department Violent Crimes Team at (707) 543-3590.
Oakland Police Investigating Saturday Shooting
Oakland police are investigating a shooting that injured a man Saturday afternoon, a police officer said.
The victim was shot in the 2200 block of E. 27th Avenue at about 2:20 p.m., Officer Kevin McDonald said. He drove himself to a hospital, and is in stable condition, McDonald said.
Oakland police have not arrested any suspects in connection with the shooting.
Firefighters Rescue Hercules Woman from 2-Alarm Fire
A Hercules woman was airlifted to a hospital after firefighters rescued her from a blaze in her home early Saturday morning, a fire dispatcher said.
Firefighters responded to a one-alarm fire at 475 Falcon Way just after 1 a.m., according to the Rodeo-Hercules Fire Protection District.
Crews were able to rescue the woman, who was trapped inside the single-story home, the dispatcher said. The fire was under control within about 30 minutes, she said.
The Pinole Fire Department, the Contra Costa Fire Protection District, and the Crockett-Carquinez Fire Department also provided assistance.
The woman's condition and the extent of her injuries were not known, the dispatcher said.
The estimated damage to the house is being evaluated, and the cause of the fire is under investigation by the Contra Costa Fire Protection District.
3 Suspicious Vegetation Fires Burn in San Rafael - Sources, Cause Under Investigation
Three suspicious vegetation fires were found burning in San Rafael on Sunday evening, the latest in a string of such fires in the city.
A vegetation fire was reported at 9:20 p.m. near 600 Francisco Blvd. West, fire officials said.
Firefighters arriving on the scene found three separate fires by the railroad tracks behind R.A.B. Motors, Inc. and an old Borders store, near a possible homeless encampment.
The fires, which are considered suspicious in nature, were extinguished quickly.
The source and cause remain under investigation.
San Rafael has suffered several similar fires in the past month.
On June 14, 38-year-old transient Hope Teresa Windom was arrested on suspicion of starting two fires near a homeless encampment behind the Falkirk Cultural Center at 1408 Mission Ave. the previous day.
On May 22, several suspicious fires were started around 10:15 p.m. near 675 Anderson Drive, not far from the most recent fire.
No injuries were reported in any of the fires.