SF News

Home Burglarized In Bernal Heights Saturday Afternoon

Several expensive items were taken in a home burglary in San Francisco's Bernal Heights neighborhood on Saturday afternoon, police said.

The burglary was reported at about 12:15 p.m. at a home in the 900 block of Ellsworth Street.

The victim tried to enter his home but felt resistance to the door, as if someone behind it were holding it shut, according to police.

The man then heard footsteps running down stairs in his home, and when he was finally able to open the door, he saw two people running out the back door, police said. The suspects had not been found as of this morning, according to police.

Anyone with information about the burglary is asked to call the Police Department's anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or send a tip by text message to TIP411.

 

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Supreme Court Overturns CA Law Banning Sale of Violent Video Games to Minors

Video Games Protected by 1st Amendment Freedom of Speech

The U.S. Supreme Court by a 7-2 vote today struck down a California law that banned the sale or rental of violent video games to children under the age of 18.

The court majority said the games are protected by the First Amendment right of free speech.

Justice Antonin Scalia wrote, "Like protected books, plays and movies that preceded them, video games communicate ideas -- and even social messages. 

"That suffices to confer First Amendment protection," Scalia wrote.

The court ruled in a lawsuit filed in federal court in San Jose in 2005 by two industry groups, the Entertainment Merchants Association and the Entertainment Software Association.

The high court upheld rulings by U.S. District Judge Ronald Whyte of San Jose in 2007 and the 9th U.S. Circuit of Appeals in San Francisco in 2009 that struck down the law.

The 2005 law was authored by state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco/San Mateo, who was then an assemblyman.

It was blocked from going into effect by an injunction issued by Whyte.

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BART Reports Delays of Up to 15 Minutes from SF to East Bay

BART trains headed from San Francisco to the East Bay are delayed by 10 to 15 minutes this morning because of a track problem in Daly City, a BART employee said. The employee did not have an estimate for when trains would be back on schedule.

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California Cable Car Line is Back On Track This Morning

The California cable car line will be back on track this morning after a six-month shutdown for repairs, according to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee will welcome the return of the California line, which has been undergoing maintenance since January, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony scheduled for 10 a.m., SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose said.

The repairs were part of the California Street Infrastructure Improvement Project, which involved improvements on the 17 blocks of California Street between Drumm Street and Van Ness Avenue.

The project replaced electrical and mechanical components that support the cable car system, reconstructed streets, installed curb ramps, repaired sidewalk curbs and replaced sewers, Rose said.

Today's ceremony also recognizes the completion of the Powell Cable Car Improvement Project, which involved three separate five-day shutdowns of the Powell-Mason and Powell-Hyde cable car lines, he said.

Although narrower in scope, the project involved replacing the propulsion systems on the cable car lines and the control console in the cable car barn at Washington and Mason streets.

It was completed earlier this month. It took years of planning and coordination between city agencies to perform the maintenance on the 27-year-old lines, Rose said.

The ribbon-cutting event will take place at the end of the California line at California and Drumm streets.

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Mechanical Problems Cause Southbound Caltrain Delays

Southbound Caltrain service has been slowed by mechanical problems this morning, Caltrain spokeswoman Christine Dunn said. As of 7:45 a.m., southbound train No. 210 was 23 minutes behind schedule. Train No. 208 was 15 minutes late, and train No. 312 was delayed by 10 minutes.

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San Francisco Bay Area Monday News Roundup

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.

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San Francisco Pride Parade Hits the Streets This Morning, Followed by Civic Center Celebration

The 41st annual Pride Parade will make its way through downtown San Francisco this morning to celebrate the gay community of the Bay Area and worldwide.

At 10:30 a.m., the parade kicks off at Market and Beale streets and ends at Market and Eighth streets. This year's parade theme is "In Pride We Trust."

Event organizers estimate at least one million parade-goers to attend along with revelers joining post-parade festivities around the Civic Center until 6:30 p.m.

San Francisco police Lt. Troy Dangerfield said during the parade there will be a noticeable police presence.

"There's going to be a lot of cops along the parade route because so many people come out," he said.

Last night's "Pink Saturday" celebrations, organized by the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, saw few incidents in the Castro District, according to Dangerfield.

Event organizers set up entrance checkpoints following last year's shooting during the Saturday night street party. At event entrances security personnel searched bags for weapons and alcohol.

Today's pride activities will close streets, affecting Muni and other transit routes throughout the day and evening, said SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose.

Golden Gate Bridge District spokeswoman Mary Currie said ferry service would be added from Larkspur into the city for the parade on Sunday.

Bus service through Golden Gate Transit will be disrupted through Monday, she said.

In anticipation of large crowds at downtown San Francisco BART stations, there will be three extra Sunday trains and all trains will have more cars, a BART communications specialist Berta Villalva said.

At the Civic Center BART station the elevator is out of service, but all escalators are working. People needing elevator service should use the Powell Street station to access the downtown and Civic Center area, according to Villalva.

Weather Forecast for the San Francisco Bay Area

The Bay Area is expected to be cloudy with patches of fog this morning, before becoming sunny later today. Highs in the upper 50s to mid 60s are anticipated. Southwest winds are expected to be around 10 mph, before becoming west 15 to 20 mph in the afternoon.

Clear skies are expected tonight, before becoming cloudy with patchy fog after midnight. Lows in the lower 50s are predicted. West winds 15 to 20 mph are also expected.

Monday is expected to be cloudy in the morning with patchy fog, before becoming sunny. West winds 10 to 15 mph are anticipated, with highs in the upper 50s to mid 60s.

San Francisco Police Arrest Two Teens After Five Injured in Market Street Shooting

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 is 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.

San Francisco police do not anticipate any similar incidents at today's Pride Parade, which starts at Market and Beale streets and ends at Market and Eighth streets, he said.

San Francisco Bay Area Saturday News Roundup

Semi-Trailer Truck Collides with Amtrak Train

At least two people were killed in Nevada on Friday morning when a semi-trailer truck collided with an Amtrak train headed for Emeryville, according to the rail service. The truck driver was killed when he ran into the side of Train 5 at about 11:20 a.m. at a public crossing east of Reno, Nev., according to Amtrak. An Amtrak train crew member also was killed. Numerous other people were taken to area hospitals.

The rest of the passengers were transported to local schools for shelter and food, according to Amtrak. The train originated in Chicago and was carrying 204 passengers and 14 crew members at the time of the crash. "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. Anyone with questions about friends or family aboard the train can call (800) 523-9101.

Innapropriate Murals at San Francisco Schools 

Murals at San Francisco schools are being looked at more closely after the discovery of inappropriate images contained in some that were created by a local artist who was recently accused of possession of child porn, police and school officials said. Anthony Josef Norris, 46, was the founder of the nonprofit children's art organization Kid Serve, which worked with school children to create outdoor murals at schools and other sites around the city. Norris was arrested June 2 after an investigation by the FBI allegedly found child porn videos posted on the Internet that were traced to his home address. A search of his computer also uncovered at least 600 images of sexual exploitation of pre-pubescent children, according to the FBI.

After his arrest, San Francisco Unified School District officials discovered that at least three of the murals he created at schools and other sites around the city contained inappropriate images, district spokeswoman Gentle Blythe said. The murals are mosaics containing small tiles, and the offensive images "are imperceptible to someone who might just be looking at the mural as a whole," Blythe said. School officials notified San Francisco police about the images June 15, and police have collected evidence to hand over to the FBI, which is handling the child porn case, police spokesman Lt. Troy Dangerfield said. Dangerfield said some of the questionable paintings and sketchings that were part of the mural involved children, but he declined to elaborate. Authorities are continuing to investigate whether there are more offensive images in other murals Norris created around the city. Police Chief Greg Suhr joined other officers and school district officials at a news conference at the San Francisco Hall of Justice Friday morning to announce the information about the murals. Norris faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison if he is convicted of the federal child porn charge. -

World's Ugliest Dog Winner - Yoda!

A 1.8-pound scruffy mutt named Yoda who has been mistaken for a rat has won the World's Ugliest Dog title for 2011 at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma. Yoda won a trophy 15 times her size and $1,000. The beady-eyed pooch also gets a photo shoot and an overnight stay in the Loft Suite at the Sheraton Sonoma County, according to fair officials. Her owner, Terry Devine Schumacher, said her daughter found Yoga in a field 14 years ago when the pup was 2. "I told her to put it down because I thought it was a rat," Schumacher said. Fair officials allowed the audience to vote this year via text. Other favorites in the 23rd annual contest were Icky, Cuda, Handsome Hector and Ratdog.

58-Year-Old Woman Drives Car into San Leandro Marina, Apparent Suicide

Police officers pulled a 58-year-old woman from the San Leandro Marina on Friday morning after she drove her car into the water in an apparent suicide attempt, the department said. The woman sat in the car as it filled with water but then decided to escape through the front driver's side window as officers arrived, police Lt. Jeff Tudor said. Officer Louie Guillen took off his duty belt and entered the water to grab the woman and pull her to shore, Tudor said. Guillen held one end of a K9 leash and his colleagues on the shore held the other end to ensure his and the woman's safety. The rescue began at about 8:45 a.m. when several people saw the vehicle go into the water and called 911, police said. The Alameda County Fire Department dispatched a rescue boat, and responding police officers found the vehicle partially submerged near El Torito restaurant. The U.S. Coast Guard also sent a rescue team. Nobody was injured during the rescue, and the woman was taken to a local hospital, Tudor said. -

Couple Steals Car with 1-month-old Baby - Video Released

A new surveillance video has been released showing a couple suspected of stealing a car with a 1-month-old baby in the backseat outside a Morgan Hill food bank last month. The video shows a vehicle that police believe is still being driven by Maribel Mejia and Enrique Rocha, the couple suspected in the car theft and kidnapping, Morgan Hill police said. The vehicle has been described by witnesses as a dark blue late-model Toyota Camry, with a license plate number of 2HJD721. The driver-side rear passenger window is shattered. Mejia and Rocha were seen walking out of the Reach Out food bank at St. Catherine's Church the afternoon of May 31 as the infant's mother was walking in, police said.

The mother, Maribel Corona, had left her baby in her white Infiniti Q45 with the keys in the ignition as she briefly ducked into the food bank, police said. When she came out, the car and her daughter were gone. Several hours later, the car was found at Toro Park near Salinas by a hiker. The baby was safe inside and was reunited with her mother. Corona's purse was in the car when it was taken, and her credit card was used at a Walmart and a gas station in Los Banos on June 1, police said. Surveillance video from several locations where the card was used show Mejia using the credit card with Rocha and Mejia's 4-year-old son, police said. Police have obtained a $120,000 arrest warrant for Mejia, a 33-year-old Chualar resident, on charges of auto theft, kidnapping, child endangerment and possession of stolen property. She is described as 5 feet 2 inches tall and weighing 200 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.

CHP Talked to 2 Would-Be Jumpers Off Golden Gate Bridge This Week

California Highway Patrol officers talked two would-be jumpers off the eastern ledge of the Golden Gate Bridge on two consecutive days this week. The bike patrol officers stopped a 29-year-old man Wednesday and a 49-year-old man Thursday from jumping, the agency said.

A KRON4 news reporter captured the second encounter on film during a media ride-along, according to the CHP. CHP Sgt. Gilbert Osuna said the bicycle patrol unit members take four-day critical-incident training classes to prepare them to identify and interact with people suffering from depression or mental health issues. The bike patrols were implemented in 2001, Osuna said, and have made it much easier for officers to see and contact people trying to commit suicide on the bridge.

"The Golden Gate Bridge gets millions of people a year," he said. "We have lots of people to look at." The number of suicide threats varies, Osuna said. Some days officers won't encounter any, and other days multiple contacts are made.

On Wednesday, a CHP bike patrol officer received a call at about 2:40 p.m. about a man over the railing on the east walkway of the bridge. The officer talked to the man for about 10 minutes and was able to convince him to come back onto the sidewalk, the CHP said. He was taken to a hospital for a mental health evaluation. The next day, a CHP bike patrol officer who had just transitioned to a patrol car for the KRON4 ride-along received a call at about 11:30 a.m. about a possibly suicidal person sitting on the east walkway railing.

The officer found the man over the railing near the south tower, and after about 40 minutes the man agreed to come back to the sidewalk, the CHP said. He was taken to a hospital for psychiatric evaluation. The officers' critical-incident training includes overviews of schizophrenia, mood disorders, depression, bipolar disorder, cognitive disorders such as dementia and delirium, suicide by cop, and intervention strategies, Osuna said.

Vallejo Man Killed in 1000 Block of Porter Street Identified

Vallejo police have identified 22-year-old Michael Ross as the Vallejo man who was killed in the 1000 block of Porter Street around 4 p.m. Thursday. Police also identified 21-year-old Johnathan Walker, of Vallejo and San Francisco, as the homicide suspect. Walker is also wanted by San Francisco police in connection with an unrelated homicide and by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for a parole violation, Sgt. Jeff Bassett said. Walker, who should be considered armed and dangerous, may be associated with a 1980s, four-door, light brown or tan Honda Accord with a partial California license plate of 6FB_802, Bassett said. The shooting was Vallejo's ninth homicide this year.

Man Arressted in Santa Rosa on Possession of Firearm

Santa Rosa police arrested a Healdsburg man on suspicion of being a felon in possession of a firearm after a pursuit Thursday morning. Lance Gregory Janssen, 45, failed to yield to an emergency vehicle around 3 a.m. at Bicentennial Way and Ventura Avenue, Sgt. Michael Clark said. Janssen sped away on his motorcycle with the officer in pursuit, Clark said. He drove on Bicentennial Way as fast as 65 mph before he lost control of his motorcycle and left the road near Lake Park Drive. Janssen, who was in possession of a loaded handgun, was injured in the collision and admitted in a hospital, Clark said. Police say they plan to ask the Sonoma County District Attorney's Office to file felony evasion, felon in possession of a firearm and possession of a firearm charges against Janssen.

Alameda Board of Sups Approve $2.5 Billion Budget

The Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted to approve a $2.5 billion budget for the 2011-2012 fiscal year that closes a $138 million funding gap through a variety of measures. Among those steps are eliminating 111 positions and making some cuts to programs in health care, public assistance and public protection. However, county officials hope that there won't be any layoffs, as most of the jobs slated to be eliminated are unfilled and the county will try to shift employees who are in positions that will be eliminated to other jobs.

The budget for the new fiscal year beginning July 1 represents a 1 percent, or $25 million, increase over the current budget. The job cuts leave the county with a workforce of 9,049 fulltime employees.

County Administrator Susan Muranishi said although the budget is balanced, the county probably will have to revise it later this year to deal with likely funding cuts by the state and federal governments, which are both dealing with serious budget problems. Muranishi said that although this is the third consecutive year the county has had to deal with a funding gap of more than $100 million, the county has still been able to maintain vital services for its residents.

"This is a prudent, responsible budget that doesn't rely on gimmicks and instead is based on savings that are in the bank," Muranishi said. Supervisor Keith Carson, who chairs the county's budget work group, said the likely cutbacks in state and funding could impact county programs. "We are continuing on a downward slide in terms of our ability to fund services that are vital to county residents," Carson said.

Salinas Man Facing Attempted Murder Chargers Gets Life in Prison

A Salinas man faces life in prison after being convicted of attempted murder in the gang-related shooting of two high school students, prosecutors said. A Monterey County Superior Court jury on Thursday found Jorge Sanchez guilty of two counts of premeditated attempted murder, two counts of assault with a semiautomatic firearm and being an active participant in a street gang, Deputy District Attorney David Rabow said in a statement. The jury also found true the allegations that the crimes were committed for the benefit of the Norteno street gang, and that Sanchez personally discharged a firearm, causing great bodily harm to both victims, Rabow said.

The shooting occurred Feb. 15, 2008, as the two victims, two boys ages 14 and 15, were leaving Alisal High School, according to prosecutors. Sanchez, 19, was riding with another alleged gang member on Williams Road when he saw the boys, whom he believed were Sureno gang members. Sanchez and his driver waited for the boys in the neighborhood where they expected them to walk. When he spotted the boys, Sanchez challenged them about their gang affiliation, then shouted out his gang's name and fired at them with a 9mm semi-automatic handgun. Two shots struck one boy and two struck the other, while four other shots went through the unoccupied house the boys were standing in front of. Sanchez was identified by a witness and one of the victims, Rabow said. The driver ultimately confessed, entered a plea agreement and agreed to testify against Sanchez.

The jury trial began June 6. Jurors deliberated for several hours. Sanchez is set to be sentenced Aug. 2 by Judge Adrienne Grover. The maximum sentence he faces is life in prison.

Concord Police Search for Home-Invasion Suspects

Concord police are searching for two males and two females in connection with a home-invasion robbery Thursday evening, Lt. Tim Runyon said. Police received a call shortly before 6:45 p.m. reporting a home invasion robbery in the 1100 block of Virginia Lane. Investigators were told that two males and two females had entered the home by force and stole property, Runyon said. They fled before police arrived and were still outstanding Friday afternoon, Runyon said.

Crockett Crash Victim Identfied 

A man who was killed Thursday in a crash in Crockett that started a 4-acre grass fire has been identified as 49-year-old Vallejo resident Albert Kurson, a Contra Costa County coroner's deputy said. The crash was reported at 12:51 p.m. at Winslow and Pomona streets in the unincorporated town of Crockett. Kurson's vehicle reportedly hit a power pole and then caught fire. The flames spread to the surrounding grass, according to the California Highway Patrol. East Bay Regional Park District firefighters received help from the Crockett Carquinez Fire Association, the Contra Costa Fire Protection District, and a helicopter from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. They had the two-alarm fire under control in a little more than two hours, an assistant fire chief said.

Tire-Slashing Suspect Arrested

A man suspected in a 2009 tire-slashing spree that triggered the formation of a neighborhood watch group in San Carlos has been arrested, according to the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office. Ian Anthony Mitchell, 20, was arrested on four outstanding arrest warrants after he was found riding with two other suspects in a vehicle in the 400 block of Walnut Street around 4 a.m., Lt. Ray Lunny said. One of the warrants dates back to a Feb. 21, 2009 "Tire Slash" case in San Carlos, in which the tires were slashed on around 50 vehicles in one night.

The case caused sufficient concern at the time, and it triggered the formation of the White Oaks Neighborhood Watch Program, Lunny said. Mitchell, a transient, was identified as a suspect after a blood sample taken from the rim of one of the victim vehicles was matched to him, and a $100,000 warrant was issued for his arrest. He is 6 feet 5 inches tall, 175 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. Investigators are still trying to determine why Mitchell and the two others in the vehicle, none of whom are San Carlos residents, were driving around the city at 4 a.m.

Ice Cream Pushcart Vender Robbed in Concord

An ice cream pushcart vendor was robbed Thursday evening in Concord, police Lt. Tim Runyon said. Shortly after 6:30 p.m., two armed men reportedly robbed the vendor in Meadow Homes Park. The suspects fled before police arrived and remain at large, Runyon said.

San Francisco Bay Area Weather Report

The San Francisco Bay Area is expected to be mostly cloudy today, with patchy fog and drizzle this morning. Highs in the upper 50s to mid 60s are predicted. Southwest winds 15 to 20 mph are anticipated.

Forecasters predict partly cloudy weather tonight, with patchy fog after midnight and lows in the lower 50s. West winds 15 to 20 mph are expected. Cloudy skies and patches of fog are expected on Sunday morning, before becoming sunny in the afternoon. Highs in the 50s to upper 60s are predicted, with west winds 10 to 15 mph.

Update: Power Restored To All But 233 Customers In Outage

Power has been restored this afternoon to all but 233 PG&E customers in an outage that affected thousands earlier today when a car struck a power pole in San Francisco, a utility spokeswoman said.

Around 6,700 customers lost power shortly before noon when a vehicle struck a pole at Leavenworth and Filbert streets.

PG&E estimates the remaining customers will have their power restored by early this evening, probably a little after 5 p.m., spokeswoman Tamar Sarkissian said.

The city's Nob Hill, Telegraph Hill and Russian Hill neighborhoods were affected, as well as Pier 39.

 

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Football Player's Arrest In Saggy Pants Incident Called Racist

The removal of a black college football player from a U.S. Airways flight and subsequent arrest in connection with his sagging pants was decried as racist today by his mother and local NAACP officials.

The fact that college football player Deshon Marman was asked to pull up his pants and ejected from a flight from San Francisco to New Mexico on June 15 is "unconscionable" given recent news reports that another white passenger has been allowed to travel regularly in women's lingerie, said Amos Brown, president of the San Francisco chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

The airline clearly targeted Marman because of his race, Brown said at a news conference Friday in San Francisco.

"He's been a victim of racial injustice and U.S. Airways owes him and his mother an apology," he said.

Brown said the NAACP will be seeking an apology from U.S. Airways and action including sensitivity training for employees.

San Francisco police and U.S. Airways officials have said that Marman, a San Francisco resident attending the University of New Mexico on a scholarship, was arrested not because of his clothing, but because he refused requests from airline crew to pull his pants up and then refused to leave the plane when told to do so by the pilot.

But Marman's mother, Donna Doyle, called the charges "bogus," and said the dispute originated with a ticket agent who did not like the way her son looked.

She said Marman was not a threat or exposing any underwear once he was seated, but the pilot chose to "escalate" the situation.

"You don't judge a book by its cover, and that's what they did, they judged him by his appearance," Doyle said.

Marman was not even sporting the "saggy pants" look but was instead wearing pajama pants with a drawstring waist for comfort, she said.

He tried to pull them up when the ticket agent first mentioned them, but had bags in his hands at the time and they fell back down.

"It wasn't a fashion statement, it was pajama pants with a tie on them," Doyle said.

When she saw photos published in newspapers recently of another passenger allowed to travel in women's underwear, Doyle said she was "appalled" that the man was allowed to fly while her son was arrested.

U.S. Airways has said it does not have a dress code for passengers but asks that they "dress in an appropriate manner to ensure the safety and comfort of all our passengers."

A call to the airline requesting a response to today's news conference has not yet been returned.

Brown said he did not approve of the baggy pants look, which has its roots in prison culture, but Marman should not be singled out for sporting it.

Doyle, who said she had four sons, likewise expressed reservations about the look. "I don't condone my son's attire, but that's his choice," she said.

Marman was arrested on suspicion of a felony count of battery of a police officer and misdemeanor counts of resisting arrest and trespassing.

Police said an officer was injured in a scuffle after Marman was escorted off Flight 488 to Albuquerque.

He posted bail and was released from custody the next day.

He is due to appear in court July 18 and the district attorney's office has until July 16 to decide whether to file charges.

 

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About 3,300 PG&E Customers Without Power After Car Hits Pole

About 3,300 PG&E customers are without power in San Francisco this afternoon after a car struck a power pole, a utility spokesman said.

The outage started shortly before noon when a vehicle struck a pole at the intersection of Leavenworth and Filbert streets, spokesman Andrew Souvall said.

The city's Nob Hill, Telegraph Hill and Russian Hill neighborhoods are affected, as well as Pier 39, Souvall said.

About 6,700 customers were originally affected, but power has been restored to 3,400 of them, he said.

Souvall did not know when power would be restored to the remaining customers.

 

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New Security Measures In Place For Pink Saturday Celebration

New security measures will be in place at this weekend's Pink Saturday pride celebration in an effort to prevent another incident such as the fatal shooting that rocked last year's event, a San Francisco police spokesman said.

Attendees of the unofficial Castro District street party will not be allowed to bring alcohol this year, police Officer Albie Esparza said. Security officers will also be checking bags and using wands to search individuals for weapons after 19-year-old Stephen Powell was killed last year when an unidentified man opened fire into a crowd, Esparza said.

"We want to provide a safe environment," he said. "You don't come to Pride expecting to be caught in the crossfire.

It's a celebration -- come enjoy it -- but we don't want any crime." Esparza said the Police Department will have a zero-tolerance policy for alcohol consumption at Pink Saturday, which will be held on Castro Street between 19th and Market streets; 18th Street between Diamond and Noe streets; and Market Street between Diamond and Noe streets.

Officers will also be citing at their discretion any intoxicated or aggressive individuals, and patrols were increased starting today to cover the weekend revelers, Esparza said.

SF Pride official celebrations begin on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the city's Civic Center Plaza with music, booths and large crowds and will continue with the parade on Sunday.

This year's theme is "In Pride We Trust." Tonight the "Trans March" will begin from San Francisco's Dolores Park at 6:30 p.m. to United Nations Plaza near City Hall.

The march intends to "inspire all trans and gender non-conforming people to realize a world where we are safe, loved, and empowered," according to group organizers.

At 8 p.m. the 33rd annual pride concert kicks off at the Everett Auditorium at Church and 16th streets, pride concert spokeswoman Heidi Beeler said.

The concert features the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony, Golden Gate Men's Chorus and other local groups. Commander Zoe Dunning, the first openly gay naval officer, will be honored at the concert.

The Pride Parade is then expected to attract 1 million people onto the streets of San Francisco on Sunday morning, starting in the Embarcadero and ending at Civic Center Plaza, but the celebration of the lesbian, gay, transgender, queer and bisexual community goes beyond the annual parade.

Another visible sign of pride weekend will be the pink triangle displayed on the hillside of Twin Peaks.

The triangle has 200-foot-long sides and is made with 175 pink-painted tarps, said organizer and co-founder Patrick Carney.

This year marks the triangle's 16th year and represents the pink triangle German Nazis forced homosexuals to wear during World War II, Carney explained.

After 120 volunteers install the triangle on Saturday from 6 to 10 a.m., city officials and SF Pride marshals will christen the homemade flag.

Mayor Ed Lee, Supervisor Scott Weiner and other city officials are expected to attend the ceremony at the top of Twin Peaks.

Carney said the triangle can be seen from 20 miles away.

On Saturday night spotlights will illuminate the triangle.

On Saturday afternoon the annual Dyke March will head from Dolores Park into the Castro District where the Pink Saturday party takes place, shutting down the heart of the famously "gay" neighborhood.

The pride activities will close streets, affecting Muni and other transit routes tonight through Sunday night, said SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose.

Golden Gate Bridge District spokeswoman Mary Currie said ferry service would be added from Larkspur into the city for the parade on Sunday.

Bus service through Golden Gate Transit will be disrupted today through Monday, she said.

 

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Big-Rig Overturns On Highway 101 Off-Ramp

A big-rig overturned on an off-ramp from southbound U.S. Highway 101 in San Francisco this morning, a California Highway Patrol officer said.

The solo-vehicle crash was reported at about 9:40 a.m. on the eastbound Cesar Chavez Street off-ramp from southbound Highway 101, CHP Officer Eric Anderson said.

The big-rig driver suffered minor injuries in the crash, Anderson said.

The overturned 16-wheeler was still blocking the off-ramp as of 10:05 a.m., he said.

Tow trucks responded to get the big-rig upright, but Anderson did not know when the off-ramp would be reopened.

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Man Carjacks Friend After They Get Into An Argument In Mission District

A man allegedly stole his friend's car after they got into an argument in San Francisco's Mission District late Thursday night, police said.

The carjacking was reported at about 11:30 p.m. near the intersection of Cesar Chavez and Shotwell streets.

The victim, an 18-year-old woman, is friends with the suspect and the pair were driving in the woman's car, a 2005 gold Chevrolet Malibu, according to police.

When the woman pulled over during the argument, the suspect forced her out of the vehicle and into the street, then got into the driver's seat and drove away, police said.

He had not been found as of this morning, according to police.

Anyone with information about the case is encouraged to call the Police Department's anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or send a tip by text message to TIP411.

 

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June 25, 2011

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It’s 5:10 a.m, 53° and headed to 62°. Details are here. It’s all about Pride this weekend. And despite the renovations going on at Dolores Park, you’ll safely see most of it if you hang out at the park. Last night it started with the Transgender Parade, tonight is the Dyke Parade, which starts gathering...

@MLNow: VIDEO: Beer, Flowers, Music as the Tamale Lady Turns 60, http://t.co/Ve6LDmW … More @MLNow: SFPD Recap: Man Jacks Friend’s Car. Woman left stranded in the middle of the night. http… More @MLNow: SNAP: La Geografía del Dolor http://ow.ly/5pS7a … More @MLNow: Mission High Math Teacher Finalist for Nation’s Highest Teaching Award http://ow.ly/5pUGm… More @MLNow:...

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